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The officer hearing Trump's Ukraine call reported concerns



WASHINGTON – A White House security officer, who is a distinguished Iraq war veteran, plans to announce to the house-busting investigators on Tuesday that he has heard President Trump appeal to the Ukrainian president to assign one of his leading political rivals Investigate American interests that he reported it to a supervisor.

Lt. Colonel Alexander S. Vindman of the Army, Ukraine's top expert in the National Security Council, has twice raised internal objections, such as Mr. Trump and his inner circle treated Ukraine for a draft of his opening statement from The New York from one of to him as designated "sense of duty". time.

He will be the first White House official to testify to overheard the telephone call of July 25 between Mr. Trump and President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, who is at the center of the impeachment investigation, in which Mr. Trump asked Mr.. Zelensky examines former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.

"I did not think it appropriate to require a foreign government to investigate a US citizen, and I was concerned about the impact on US support -Government of Ukraine " said Colonel Vindman in his statement. "I recognized that an investigation of the Biden and Burisma by Ukraine would likely be interpreted as a party example that would undoubtedly lead to Ukraine losing the bipartisan support it has maintained so far . "

Burisma Holdings is an energy company in whose board Biden's son worked as vice-president of his father.

" This would undermine US national security, "Colonel Vindman added.

The Colonel, a Ukrainian-American immigrant who received Purple Heart after being wounded in a street bomb in Iraq and whose testimony is full of references to duty and patriotism, could be more difficult to dismiss than his civilian colleagues.

"I am a patriot", Colonel Vindman plans to tell the investigators "and it is my sacred duty and honor to advance and defend our country regardless of party or politics." [19659008] He was joined on Tuesday by the Intelligence, Foreign Affairs, and Oversight and Reform Committees, disregarding a White House decree not cooperate with the impeachment investigation, privately interviewed.

The colonel, represented by Michael Volkov a former federal prosecutor, declined to comment on this article.

In his testimony, Colonel Vindman wants to say that he is not the informer who first reported on Trump's print campaign against Ukraine. However, he will present a report that reaffirms and substantiates crucial elements of this complaint and has led the Democrats to initiate their impeachment investigation.

"Because of my decades of experience and my decades of training, my sense of duty and my commitment to operate within the chain of command, I have expressed some internal concerns to the National Security Guard." He will testify that he has witnessed in an alarmed manner how "external influencers" initiated a "false narrative" about Ukraine, which contradicted the view of US national security officials and harmed the interests of the United States. According to The Times documents reviewed on the eve of his congressional testimony, Colonel Vindman was concerned when he noted that Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president's personal advocate, made an attempt to induce Kiev to examine Biden's son. and to discredit the efforts to investigate the former election campaign chairman of Mr. Trump, Paul Manafort and his business relations in Ukraine.

His report insists that he may have been among the adjutants of the whistleblower referred to in his complaint when he wrote that White House officials had told him the conversation between Mr. Trump and Mr. Zelensky , and "were deeply disturbed by what had happened in the call."

Colonel Vindman did not interact directly with the president, but was present to hold a series of talks that shed light on his pressure campaign against Ukraine.

He will also testify that he was Gordon D. Sondland (19459005), the United States Ambassador to the European Union, on the day that the Envoy met in a White House meeting with Ukrainian officials spoke, was faced Secure the meeting with the president.

Also, when he voiced alarm about the pressure campaign Colonel and other officials endeavored to maintain the United States' relations with Ukraine on track. At the direction of his supervisors in the National Security Council (1945,9005), including the then national security adviser John R. Bolton (1945,9005), Colonel Vindman wrote a memorandum in mid-August that had the restoring of the security aid aimed at detaining him from Ukraine, but Mr. Trump refused to sign it, according to documents checked by the Times. And he wrote a letter in May in which he congratulated Zelensky on his inauguration, but Mr. Trump did not sign that, according to the documents.

Colonel Vindman was concerned after hearing that the White House had been making the unusual move to withhold the 391 million dollar security support package for Ukraine approved by Congress. At least one former witness has testified that Mr. Trump has instructed to freeze the aid until he was able to obtain a commitment from Mr. Zelensky to announce an investigation of the Bidens.

While Colonel Vindman's concerns have been shared by a number of other officials, some of whom have already testified, he was in a unique position. Having emigrated as a child from Ukraine with his family and fluent in Ukrainian and Russian, the Ukrainian officials advised him on how to deal with Mr. Giuliani although they usually communicate in English ,

Twice the colonel brought his concerns to John A. Eisenberg, the chief advocate in the National Security Council. The first took place on 10th July. On this day high-ranking American officials met high-ranking Ukrainian officials in the White House in a stormy meeting with which Mr. Bolton is said to have had a tense exchange after the ambassador addressed the matter of investigations, he wanted Ukraine to do it. This meeting was described in earlier statements in the impeachment investigation.

At a debriefing session later, Colonel Sondland again called on Ukrainian officials to assist in the investigation of Trump's political rivals.

"Ambassador Sondland stressed how important it is for Ukraine to carry out the investigations into the 2016 elections, the Bidens and Burisma", Colonel Vindman said in his draft statement.

"I have told Ambassador Sondland that his statements were inappropriate" and that the request to investigate Biden and his son had nothing to do with national security and that such investigations had nothing to do with it NSC had to do. would engage or push " he added.

The Colonel's report reflected the testimony of Fiona Hill one of his superiors who had previously testified behind closed doors that she and Mr. Bolton were discussing the efforts to interact with Ukraine , were angry.

The colonel said that after his confrontation with Mr Sondland, Hill then entered the room and told Ambassador Sondland that his statements were inappropriate. "

wife. Hill, the former senior director of European and Russian affairs, also reported the incident to Mr. Eisenberg .

A few weeks later, after calling the president, the colonel went to Mr. Eisenberg with Mr. Zelensky. This time the colonel was accompanied by his twin brother Yevgeny, who is a lawyer on the National Security Council.


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