The Seedy History of Joe Biden and Russia
Although Joe Biden's Burisma scandal has gotten attention, Republicans have glossed over it, accepting superficial explanations for what happened.
Few are looking at the serious questions. Whom, exactly, has Biden been a friend to? Is it a coincidence that this scandal is based around Ukraine, Russia's neighbor? Who is behind Burisma?
Things are not always as they seem in international geopolitics. The first-glance and facile explanation that this was a simple pay-to-play scheme between Ukraine and Biden doesn't hold up.
Biden has had a long and public career. If he were an ardent advocate for Ukraine, it would be clear for all to see. But he has not been.
In fact, he has consistently sided with Ukraine's arch-nemesis, Russia. Biden was the vice president in an administration that pushed for a "reset" with Russia and oversaw Russia's entry into the WTO. Biden even advocated for a Biden-Putin Commission to bolster ties.
The defining moment came when Russia invaded Ukraine. Obama and Biden did nothing.
Looking back, it's easy to shrug the moment off, to accept Obama-Biden's non-action as the only path that could have been taken. But far from it, America had previously given "security assurances" to Ukraine.
To put the incident in context, this is what a Ukrainian friend of mine, who lives in Ukraine, wrote me:
"When the Crimea was in a process of occupation, everyone was like 'Are those Russians idiots? World power balance, Budapest Memorandum, and so on, America will [expletive deleted] you up, like any time now.' Ukrainian marines in Crimea were marching with a flag up towards sieging and firing Russian troops, shouting at Russians, 'America will help us.' Basically, they were ready to bet their lives on it."
Not only did Obama-Biden refuse to get actively involved, but they wouldn't even sell defensive weapons to Ukraine.
Why would Ukraine give money to Biden, of all people?
The question becomes even harder to answer when one digs into Biden's past. His career, it turns out, was sponsored by Russia-linked entities, as documented in detail here by Trevor Loudon.
Biden got his start with heavy aid, right from the very beginning of his career, from both Al Gore, Sr. and the Council for a Livable World (CLW). The CLW advocated for Russian interests and was founded by communist-supporting Leo Szilard, who was later outed as a conspirator with Moscow. Al Gore, Sr., for his part, was sponsored by Armand Hammer, who had a personal relationship with none other than Lenin.
None of this is a secret. Here is Biden himself lauding the CLW: "my ties to the Council go long and deep stretching way back to my first campaign for the United States Senate. I'll never forget the faith you showed and the help you gave to a young man making a long shot bid ... because of you, we won."
Any explanation of the Burisma-Biden deal has to explain why Burisma would give money to a guy whose entire career was advanced by Kremlin-linked sponsors. This contradictory situation, however, makes perfect sense if we just shift the perspective slightly. Perhaps Kremlin interests were using this ostensibly Ukrainian energy company as a cutout.
To understand this hypothesis, it's important to remember: if America is drowning in the swamp, Ukraine is buried two miles deep in Russian swamp.
Russia has been all over Ukraine for centuries. While many assume that in 1991 Ukraine made a clean break with the past, that wasn't the case at all. There were never any Nuremberg-style trials to hold the Russia-approved communists to account. Instead, those communists often retained quite a bit of power.
Ukraine's first "post-USSR" president was Leonid Kravchuk, a longtime member of the Communist Party and Soviet apparatchik. So too his successor, Leonid Kuchma.
This is where Biden begins to intersect with Ukrainian-Russian history. Burisma got started back in 2002 under the Kuchma administration.
Ukraine's next president, Viktor Yushchenko, pushed for a cleaner break with both the past and Russia. He was poisoned.
Finally comes the infamous Viktor Yanukovych, first serving as prime minister under Kuchma, then taking over the presidency in 2010, now hiding out in Russia and wanted for treason by Ukrainian nationalists. It was under Yanukovych that the owner of Burisma, Mykola Zlochevsky, who belonged to Yanukovych's political party, was appointed minister of ecology and natural resources.
Burisma's history and success are tied to questionable characters linked with Russia and not necessarily Ukrainian national interest.
Burisma isn't even owned in Ukraine. It's actually based in Cyprus. Here is how the renowned expert Joseph Douglass explained the significance of Cyprus: "Russian crooks now own Cyprus"; it is one of Russia's top "money-laundering and sequestering locations."
Zlochevsky, for his part, reportedly lives no longer in Ukraine, but in Monaco.
The idea that Russia would work through cutouts isn't without precedence. Russia-backed Joule energy brought John Podesta aboard. Then there was the uranium deal, which took place through Kazakhstan, another longtime client state of Russia, that upon close examination seems to have been a scheme to move Russian wealth to Hillary Clinton.
This theory also explains the "coincidence" that American politics has moved from Russia to Ukraine. These weren't two disparate actions, but all part of one overarching Kremlin scheme to destroy Trump and American nationalists while advancing their allies in the Democratic Party.
The Kremlin hates Trump. Remember, the anti-Trump Steele Dossier originated with Kremlin sources. Then you tie in Russia's support for the Clintons, documented in Russian Agents: The Clintons' Attack Against America, and the Russian support of Biden is totally logical and even expected.
Could the Burisma-Biden operation be nothing more than a cynical short-term play that really does start and end with Ukraine? It's possible. But being understood as a Russian operation to move money to Biden is arguably far more congruent with known facts as well as the deep historical background.
Republicans have an unsettling habit of minimizing the machinations of the enemy. Even now, as Republicans try to take Biden down, they still seem to try to box his misdeeds down into some mere short-term corruption for cash scheme, where nothing ideological or truly serious took place.
But why? Is America really up against nothing more than bumbling clowns out for money, or is it something deeper than that? And how much longer can we afford to be myopic?