Thu Oct 17th, 2019 at 05:30:12 PM EST
"With you all roads lead to Putin" Nancy Pelosi to Donald Trump in White House meeting on 10/16/18
The context for this confrontation was a meeting between Congress and The White House so that Congress could be briefed on the effects on national security, military activity and foreign policy of Trump's green lighting of Ergodan's invasion of that portion of north east Syria occupied by the US Kurdish allies.
The FBI has been conducting a counterintelligence investigation of Rudy Guilaini's activities in Ukraine. It appears that Guliani's 'associates', Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, formerly small time operators, began dealing with matters of international political significance and using talking points that appear to have originated in Russia. Parnas and Furman are alleged to have funneled money from Dmitry Firtash, a Russian businessman formerly operating in Ukraine, into US campaigns and of a conspiracy to skirt campaign finance requirements as they pushed Ukrainian political interests in the US.
Two other Guilanni Ukrainian associates, David Correia and Andrey Kukushkin, have now also been arrested, and a subpoena has been issued to former Texas Republican Rep. Pete Sessions, who wrote a letter to Sec. State Pompeo to raise concerns about the then-US ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, who was later removed by Trump following complaints by Giuliani and others.
Firtash has established close ties to the former mayor of New York City in part by recruiting several of Giuliani's associates. In July the oligarch hired two lawyers who have been helping Giuliani in his campaign to discredit Trump's critics: Victoria Toensing and Joseph DiGenova, a married couple Trump considered hiring in 2018 as part of his private legal team. Best known as diehard defenders of Trump on Fox News, the couple has combed through the oligarch's case files and used some of them in the effort to defend Trump on television and in the press.
Toensing and DiGenova then hired another Giuliani associate, Lev Parnas, to serve as their interpreter in communications with Firtash in Vienna, according to a statement the lawyers sent TIME on Oct. 11. While on his way to Vienna on Oct. 9, Parnas was arrested at Dulles Airport in Washington and charged with violating campaign finance laws. The indictment against him alleges that Parnas and his business partners secretly channeled money from an unidentified Russian donor to various political causes and candidates. Parnas has not entered a plea. His colleagues in the Firtash legal team declined to comment on the arrest.
Indicted Giuliani Associate Worked on Behalf of Ukrainian Oligarch Firtash
One of the two Florida businessmen who helped U.S. President Donald Trump's personal attorney investigate his political rival, Democrat Joe Biden, also has been working for the legal team of a Ukrainian oligarch who faces bribery charges in the United States, according to attorneys for the businessmen and the oligarch.
Lev Parnas, one of the two associates of Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, served as a translator for lawyers representing oligarch Dmytro Firtash. Parnas was arrested on Thursday along with the other Florida businessman, Igor Fruman, on unrelated charges that included illegally funneling $325,000 to a political action committee supporting pro-Trump candidates.
Both men had worked in an unspecified capacity for Firtash before Parnas joined the Ukrainian's legal team, according to a person familiar with the Florida men's business dealings with Firtash. The Floridians' connection to indicted oligarch Firtash injects an intriguing new character into the rapidly unfolding drama surrounding the effort to impeach Trump.