When the subject is Burisma in Ukraine, Hunter Biden's been a bad boy.
The U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance published "Hunter Biden, Burisma, and Corruption: The Impact on U.S. Government Policy and Related Concerns." The short version is that Joe Biden coddled bad actors in Ukraine in exchange for profitable deals for Hunter, his drug-addled son, who then spent some of that money on hookers. The long version is 87 single-spaced pages. The post will strike a middle ground, giving you the essential details.
Preliminarily, it's important to point out that this investigation began in August 2019, before Biden was the Democrats' nominee. The trigger was a request to look into a decision during the Obama administration to sell militarily useful technology to a Chinese-based investment firm with ties to the communist Chinese government. One of the companies involved in the deal had ties to Hunter and Chris Heinz, the stepson of the then–secretary of state, John Kerry. Kerry, incidentally, knew what was going on but later falsely denied knowledge.
In 2014, Ukraine's then-president abdicated following massive protests. Fifty-four days later, Hunter's business partner, Devon Archer, met at the White House with Joe, who was then vice president. Five days later, Joe went to Ukraine and became the public face for Ukraine in the Obama administration.
The next day, Archer joined the board of Burisma, an ostensible energy exploration company but, in reality, a place to hold ill gotten gains for its corrupt owner, Mykola Zlochevsky. Six days after Archer joined Burisma, the British government seized $23 million that Zlochevsky had parked in London. This ought to have scared off both Joe and his son. It did not. Two weeks later, Hunter joined Burisma's board, for which he had no qualifications, and began to collect massive sums from Burisma.
Why did Burisma want this useless man? Ukraine's new leadership, which ran on an anti-corruption platform, needed American support to establish its position. While we do not have confessions from any Burisma executives, we can guess what was happening: Burisma needed Joe to tell the new Ukraine government that, if it wanted American support, it had better leave Burisma out of its anti-corruption efforts.
The bribe Burisma selected was a bucketload of cash to Hunter. This was very clever because it gave Joe plausible deniability. After all, Joe did not get any money from the deal, and Hunter did not represent a family business.
It was immediately apparent that Hunter's role created a conflict of interest. However, when two administration officials asked the vice president's office about the issue, they were fobbed off. Joe's other son, Beau, was dying from cancer, and it was too crass to bother him with minor issues such as the fact that his surviving son had a faked up job for one of the entities at the center of corruption in Ukraine.
The Obama administration knew or should have known precisely what was going on — that Burisma was deeply corrupt, that Hunter had no business there, that it interfered with the U.S.'s abilities to deal appropriately with Ukraine, that it allowed Russia to get involved in American foreign policy regarding Ukraine, and that more Biden family members than Hunter were cashing in. (In other words, while Trump had nothing to do with Russia collusion, the Biden family was welcoming it.)
And here's the critical part: Biden did what Burisma was hoping he would do. He consistently kept the heat off Burisma, including conditioning U.S. aid to Ukraine on the president's firing a prosecutor who was investigating Burisma — something about which Biden proudly boasted after leaving the White House.
Hunter got additional benefits as well. While traveling around the world, ostensibly to lobby for deals for Burisma, we taxpayers paid for his Secret Service protection. Hunter also took advantage of access to women who were likely victims of an Eastern European human-trafficking ring. (Yes, he is that sleazy.)
Those are the big details. Everything else is about lots of money flowing between myriad corrupt entities and people, with Chinese, Ukrainian, and Russian nationals involved. The people benefiting from these wealth transfers were Hunter, James Biden (Joe's brother), and Sara (James's wife). Like prize-winners on a daytime TV show, the latter two got the benefit of a $100,000 worldwide shopping spree with their debauched nephew.
The Senate committees' report has the evidence and pulls no punches. The whole Burisma deal was deeply corrupt, Joe's position as vice president was the necessary fulcrum to make it happen, and it exposed the U.S. to the risk of dangerous foreign intervention in U.S. domestic and foreign policies.
Image: Hunter Biden at the DNC. YouTube screen grab.