- The Duran Quick Take: Episode 167.
The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s stunning revelation that he will not be going to Ukraine, to follow up on Ukraine-DNC election collusion, after receiving information that he was walking into a trap set up by Ukrainian oligarchs and corrupt officials close to the new Ukrainian President Zelensky.
After a full day of media hysteria, Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani announced Friday evening that he has canceled his trip to Ukraine. “I’ve decided I’m not going to go to Ukraine, Giuliani told Fox News’ Shannon Bream. He said that the reason he bailed is because he has discovered that the president of Ukraine is surrounded by political enemies and is convinced that he was about to walk into a trap.
Giuliani had planned “to visit Kiev and meet with president-elect Volodymyr Zelensky to ask that Ukraine pursue investigations into two matters,” the Washington Examiner reported:
… the origin of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and the involvement of Joe Biden’s son in an energy company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch. Last week Giuliani called for Biden to be investigated for a trip he made in 2016 when he threatened to withhold $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees if Ukraine did not dismiss Viktor Shokin, the country’s then-prosecutor general. Biden’s son, Hunter, stood to gain financially from having Shokin removed.
The New York Times opined on Thursday that “Mr. Giuliani’s plans create the remarkable scene of a lawyer for the president of the United States pressing a foreign government to pursue investigations that Mr. Trump’s allies hope could help him in his reelection campaign and it comes after Mr. Trump spent more than half of his term facing questions about whether his 2016 campaign conspired with a foreign power.
What the Times forgot to mention is that the reason Mr. Trump has been facing questions is because his team was set up by foreign spies. Giuliani was traveling to Ukraine to encourage the government there to get to the bottom of it.
Giuliani told Bream, “I wasn’t going to start an investigation — they already have an investigation of how Ukrainians helped the DNC and Hillary operatives to get, in some cases false, dirty information about the Trump campaign.” He also said he believes that parts of the Steele dossier were written in Ukraine.
Giuliani said that there were fears that the Ukrainian president-elect “would be surrounded by literally enemies of the president” who were involved in the 2016 Russia collusion hoax.
“And people who were involved with other Democratic operatives and one particular oligarch who is quite corrupt and that they would influence him,” he continued. “And I’m convinced from what I’ve heard from two very reliable people tonight, that the president is surrounded by people who are enemies of the president and people who are, at least in one case, clearly corrupt and involved in this scheme. And it’s really a shame.”
Giuliani insisted that his trip had “nothing to do with 2020,” because if he wanted to meddle in that election, he would have waited a year and “dropped it right before the convention.”
He explained that he came across the information by investigating Ukrainian collusion with Democrats to create to create the false narrative against Trump and affect the election.
He added enticingly: “In the next three to four months, you’re going to find out all about that, including the corruption that went on with the Steele dossier and the corruption that went on with Papadopoulos and the way he was set up. It’s all part of one large conspiracy that has two or three parts to it.”
Giuliani said he decided not to go to Ukraine because he would have been “walking into a group of people who are enemies of the president, in some cases enemies of the United States, and in one case, an already convicted person who has been found to be involved in assisting the Democrats with the 2016 presidential election — a gentleman by the name of Leshchenko who supplied a black book that was found to be fraudulent.”
Giuliani was referring to Serhiy Leshchenko, a member of the Ukrainian parliament who was accused in his home country of interfering in the 2016 U.S. election.
According to Chuck Ross at The Daily Caller:
Leshchenko was the leading force behind the release of the so-called ‘black ledger,’ which accused Paul Manafort of receiving illicit payments from the Ukrainian government. The ledger led to Manafort’s firing from the Trump campaign, but its validity remains in dispute.
Leshchenko also appears to have tried to blackmail Manafort by contacting his daughter with information about Manafort’s Ukraine dealings.
When Bream mentioned that Senator Chris Murphy was talking about opening an investigation in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to examine Giuliani’s plans to go to Ukraine, Giuliani shot back, “I wish they would actually because I would then be able to lay out the unbelievably incriminating evidence about members of the DNC, members of the Clinton campaign who were involved in gathering information there that was negative to the Trump campaign.”
The attorney added that the evidence includes “a meeting at the National Security Council in January of 2016 in which people in the Obama administration asked [Ukrainian officials] for negative information about Trump.”
He said all of this information is a matter of record in the Ukrainian investigation, but there are forces in Ukraine that are trying to get it quashed.
Giuliani said that the corruption allegedly involving the Bidens “stinks” and will “eventually have to be investigated.”
But in the meantime, he said, “I will get out of it — in order to remove any political suggestion I will step back and I’ll just watch it unfold.”
Giuliani stressed again that he believed he was walking into a trap. “No trip because I believe I was walking into a bunch of people, one of whom was already found to be involved in this — that I wasn’t aware of — and I think this was a setup. The whole thing, by the way, is a setup. From the very beginning,” he added.
Giuliani told Bream that he may get involved in the Ukraine matter sometime in the future.
“I don’t know, I will play it by ear. I will see what is going on. I am actually quite confident that the facts with regard to former Vice President Joe Biden are so compelling there is no way he gets from here to the election without this being investigated,” he said.
“Your son doesn’t pull millions of dollars out of a crooked country that you’re overseeing, you get the prosecutor dismissed, his case gets dismissed,” the attorney said, adding that a similar thing “happened in China with even more money being taken down by the Bidens.”
Giuliani argued that corruption this blatant doesn’t go uninvestigated “unless we live in a country that’s so dominated by Democrats, that we have two different sets of rules.”
“Tell me if this wouldn’t be major news if it were the Trumps. If this were Donald Trump and Donald Trump Jr. with the same allegations. Do you think they would be putting the focus on me?!” he asked.
According to the Examiner, Trump mentioned that he was “curious” to hear from Giuliani about the trip. “Certainly it would be an appropriate thing” to speak to Attorney General William Barr about, Trump said in an interview that was published before Giuliani backed out of the excursion. “It could be a very big situation.”
But that was before he backed out.
The Trump Justice Department has thus far been uninterested in the evidence being offered by the Ukrainians, and it’s not clear why. Part of the problem, a top Ukrainian official told The Hill’s John Solomon, could be that the U.S. embassy in Kiev has been refusing to provide Ukrainian law enforcement officials with visas so they can deliver their evidence to Washington.