It is no longer news when political donors end up with ambassadorships. We just did not know until today that political donors apparently are now also able to affect the removal or the recall of a career ambassador according to the indictment (see p.8) from the Southern District of New York. The SDNY alleged that these political donors sought assistance from “Congressman-1” in causing the U.S. Government to remove or recall the then U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine (that would be Marie Yovanovitch). The effort was conducted in part at the request of Ukrainian officials.
Congressman-1 has not been indicted nor identified in the indictment. SDNY said that investigations are ongoing.
The recall of Ambassador Yovanovich in May 2019 followed a persistent campaign for her removal among conservative media outlets in the United States. The State Department reportedly told RFE/RL on May 6, that Ambassador Yovanovitch “is concluding her 3-year diplomatic assignment in Kyiv in 2019 as planned.” And that “her confirmed departure date in May aligns with the presidential transition in Ukraine,” which elected a new president in April.
We now know that none of that is true. What other truth-sounding stuff are they telling us?
Those who are quick to point out that she was appointed United States Ambassador to Ukraine by President Obama, should know that Ambassador Yovanovitch was first appointed United States Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan by President George W. Bush. She was also appointed United States Ambassador to Armenia by President George W. Bush, but her tenure in Yerevan, as a career diplomat, spanned the Bush Administration and the Obama Administration (2008-2011). We’ve seen folks insists on calling her an Obama “holdover,” perhaps they’ll think otherwise if they realize that she was a Bush “holdover” before she became an Obama “holdover. Career people do tend to serve from one administration to the next.
We expect that we’ll hear more about this case in the days ahead. What is clear to us right now is if this could happen to Ambassador Yovanovitch who has over three decades of dedicated service, this could happen to anyone in the U.S. diplomatic service.
In 2018, "Parnas met with Congressman-1 and sought Congressman-1's assistance in causing the U.S. government to remove or recall the then-U.S. ambassadors to Ukraine." pic.twitter.com/70yQT28Dvg
— Matt Ford (@fordm) October 10, 2019
— Tom Benning (@tombenning) October 10, 2019
YESTERDAY: @lachlan reported that former Rep. Pete Sessions got $3m from this pro-Trump super PAC after he wrote a letter calling for the sacking of the Ukraine Amb. that Parnas, Fruman and Rudy wanted out. https://t.co/UkOBYS82tw https://t.co/3eghhgdmPO
— Sam Stein (@samstein) October 10, 2019
One potential disparity investigators may focus on: Sessions' statement attributes the info about Yovanovitch to "congressional colleagues." In his letter, he attributes it to "an interaction… with individuals" notifying him of concrete evidence from "close companions." pic.twitter.com/RvxFl5w1BZ
— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) October 10, 2019
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- Statements of Support For Former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch .
- Foggy Bottom’s Top ‘Champion of Diplomacy’ to Step Up, or Maybe Not
- @StateDept Recalls Amb. Marie Yovanovitch From Ukraine After Persistent Campaign For Removal) .
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