Firing Prosecutor Shokin was on Joe Biden’s To Do List When He Went to Ukraine in 2015
In 2015, Ukraine was having difficulty earning NATO membership due to governmental corruption and concerns that admitting Ukraine would provoke Russia. After deposed pro- Russian President Yanukovych fled the country, new President Petro Poroshenko appointed Yanukovych’s lackey Viktor Shokin to be Prosecutor General. Shokin’s appointment sparked off protests because of Shokin’s connections to Yanukovych.
In December 2015, then Vice President Biden traveled to Ukraine to address Ukraine’s parliament. Biden spoke about the need to reform the Office of the General Prosecutor, e.g. Shokin. In February 2016, IMF President Christine LeGarde threatened to hold back $40 billion in aid to Ukraine for the same reason. By March, 2016, Shokin was out.
Burisma Was Born Out of Corruption But Board Member Hunter Biden Kept His Hands Clean
Burisma Holdings is a Ukrainian energy development company founded by Mykola Zlochevsky in 2002. Zlochevsky was an energy minister under Viktor Yanukovych who used his position to award his own company extensive Ukrainian licenses to extract oil and natural gas. After Yanukovych was thrown out, Burisma was investigated regarding the award of licenses during the period 2010-2012. Hunter Biden did not take a position on the Burisma board until 2014. According to Nazar Kholodnitskiy, the head of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office, Joe and Hunter Biden were not, at any time, even a subject of the Burisma investigation.
Rudy Giuliani Has Gone to Great Lengths to Manufacture Dirt on Joe Biden
Last year, Rudy Giuliani began reaching out to Ukraine Prosecutor General Yuri Lutsenko in an effort to convince Lutsenko to launch an investigation into the Bidens. To Giuliani’s chagrin, Lutsenko walked back his allegations after months of supporting Giuliani’s conspiracy theories. Giuliani also had reached out to former Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin in late 2018. Shokin, who lost his job because of Biden, was more than happy to dish dirt. Rudy convinced Shokin to testify in an unrelated court case regarding Paul Manafort crony Dmytro Firtash. In the testimony, Shokin alleges that Biden interfered with Firtash’s attempts to enter Ukraine to avoid extradition to the U.S. Shokin goes on to allege that Biden stopped an investigation of Burisma and Biden’s son. There is no evidence to support any of Shokin’s testimony.
It Really is Illegal to Solicit Foreign Help in a U.S. Election
The Federal Election Commission states:
In general, foreign nationals are prohibited from the following activities:
Making any contribution or donation of money or other thing of value, or making any expenditure, independent expenditure, or disbursement in connection with any federal, state or local election in the United States;
Making any contribution or donation to any committee or organization of any national, state, district, or local political party (including donations to a party nonfederal account or office building account);
Making any disbursement for an electioneering communication;
Making any donation to a presidential inaugural committee.
The law also prohibits a U.S. citizen from soliciting or receiving such a contribution of any thing of value from a foreign national or foreign government.
Trump fired Ambassador Marie Louise Yovanovitch for No Good Reason
Marie Yovanovitch served in the U.S. foreign service since 1986. In early 2019, then Ukraine Prosecutor General Yuri Lutsenko told Giuliani, among other bogus allegations about Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden, that Ambassador Yovanovitch had given him a “no prosecute list.” But on April 17, Lutsenko walked back all of his allegations. Yovanovitch was fired by Trump April 29 – twelve days after Lutsenko said that he had lied about her.
Trump Really Did Hold Up $391 Million in Military Aid to Ukraine
For fiscal 2019, Congress approved $250 million in Pentagon military aid for Ukraine and $141 million in State Department aid. By June, Ukraine was inquiring about the status of the funding. Administration sources came up with a variety of reasons for the delay but none of the reasons were true. Ukraine did not get their funding until late September after Trump’s call where new Ukraine President Zelensky agreed to dig up dirt on the Bidens.
The Crowd Strike Conspiracy Has as Much Credibility as Obama Being Born in Wakanda
The theory that it was the Ukrainians and not the Russians that hacked the DNC server has been perpetuated by Roger Stone and Rudy Giuliani without any factual support. The principal consumer of this fantasy appears to be Donald Trump.
So Now Let’s Re-Read the Transcript of Trump’s July 25th Call with Zelenskyy
After niceties, President Zelensky references the next installment of U.S. military aid to Ukraine and Trump responds:
I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it. I would like you to find out what happened with this whole situation with Ukraine, they say Crowdstrike…
Following Zelensky’s appeal for more military aid, Trump asks for a favor and makes reference to the bogus Crowdstrike conspiracy theory that puts the hacked DNC server in Ukraine. Zelensky probably has no idea what Trump is talking about but he will agree to just about anything to get that military aid. Trump goes on:
… I heard you had a prosecutor who was very good and he was shut down and that’s really unfair. A lot of people are talking about that, the way they shut your very good prosecutor down and you had some very bad people involved.
That prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, is the one that Christine LeGarde said needed to be fired before the IMF would implement a $40 billion bailout of Ukraine. Here Trump is attempting to whitewash Shokin so that he can make Biden out to be the villain who sought to “shut down” “your very good prosecutor.” Zelensky’s head must have been spinning by now. Trump continues:
Mr. Giuliani is a highly respected man. He was the mayor of New York City, a great mayor, and I would like him to call you. I will ask him to call you along with the Attorney General.
Why, if the Bidens were doing something wrong, wasn’t the matter turned over to the FBI for proper investigation? The obvious answer is that Trump wants Giuliani to work with Zelensky to develop a case against Biden. Trump continues:
Rudy very much knows what’s happening and he is a very capable guy.
In a normal investigation, the investigators attempt to find out what is happening. Here, it seems, Giuliani already has his story and he just needs someone to pitch it. Trump offers his opinion about the recently fired US ambassador:
The former ambassador from the United States, the woman, was bad news and the people she was dealing with in the Ukraine were bad news so I just want to let you know that.
Marie Yovanovitch had a pristine reputation. Former Prosecutor General Lutsenko retracted his false accusations about Yovanovitch in April. The last thing Giuliani and Trump wanted in Ukraine was a competent, law-abiding ambassador to see what they were doing. Then Trump brings home the bacon:
The other thing, There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great.
The investigation of Burisma involved the licenses they received during 2010-2012. Hunter Biden didn’t join the board of Burisma until 2014. By the time Biden spoke before the Rada in December 2015, there was no active investigation of Burisma to be squelched. Biden sought Shokin’s ouster because Shokin was protecting corrupt pro-Russian oligarchs in Ukraine. Trump isn’t interested in what really happened. He wants a scandal that will harm Joe Biden. Trump feigns shock at Biden’s alleged behavior:
Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it… It sounds horrible to me.
There was no “prosecution” to be stopped. Biden sought the ouster of corrupt prosecutor general Viktor Shokin. But Biden did later state that the U.S. would hold up foreign aid to Ukraine if Shokin wasn’t fired. Biden’s reason for doing that had nothing to do with his son Hunter and everything to do with the fact that Shokin was a corrupt carryover from the Yanukovych years.
There you have it. The whole call was an illegal attempt to con President Zelensky into helping Trump kneecap Joe Biden’s 2020 Presidential bid.
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