President Joe Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy walk along the Colonnade of the White House, Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022, in Washington. InternationalIndiaAfricaUkrainian whistleblower Andrii Telizhenko has sat down with Sputnik to discuss a recent US congressional hearing which discussed the censorship of Hunter Biden’s laptop and Washington’s hijacking of Ukraine’s powers.”I’m banned from coming to the United States, I’m banned from working with any banks or any foreign company. So basically, not only is my travel banned, but also my future,” former Ukrainian diplomat and whistleblower Andrii Telizhenko told Sputnik. “They came after me just because it was the son of the vice president of the United States at that time, Joe Biden, Hunter Biden (…) And not only Hunter Biden, but the [whole] Biden family is involved in this. (…) And that’s why we have chaos, not only in the United States, but throughout the world today.”
US Establishment Had Good Reasons to Bar Telizhenko
Telizhenko, then a Ukrainian Embassy official, came into the crosshairs of the US authorities in September 2020: his visa was revoked as part of a broader effort by the US Treasury Department to sanction Ukrainian whistleblowers working with Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump’s lawyer and former New York City mayor.According to the press, Telizhenko accompanied Giuliani in his 2019 trip to Kiev, where the lawyer met with former Ukrainian officials in order to bolster the Republicans’ argument that there was no “quid pro quo” in President Donald Trump’s phone call with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky. The quid-pro-quo allegation was spearheaded by House Democrats to impeach Trump. The first impeachment trial of Trump began on December 18, 2019, and concluded with his acquittal on February 5, 2020.In addition, the former New York City mayor sought to dig to the bottom of the Biden family’s ties to Ukrainian oligarchs and, in particular, Joe’s effort to fire then-Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin, who looked into Ukrainian energy firm Burisma, the one that hired Hunter Biden and paid his a hefty salary. Giuliani argued that Biden twisted the arm of then-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko into firing Shokin by threatening to withhold $1 billion in aid to Ukraine.WorldHunter Biden’s ‘Ties With Blue Star Probed By Feds’ as Explosive Burisma E-Mails Revealed22 June 2021, 15:08 GMTTelizhenko played a significant role in the Republican-led Senate probe into Ukraine and the Bidens. Then-Senate Homeland Security Chairman Ron Johnson sought to subpoena Telizhenko in 2020, but was forced to scrap the subpoena following objections from Utah Republican Senator Mitt Romney. Romney suggested at the time that Telizhenko was not trustworthy and disseminated “Russia disinformation.”Prior to that, Telizhenko’s name also popped up in the US mainstream press in 2017: at the time, he told the media about efforts by Ukrainian officials to undermine Trump’s 2016 campaign. Telizhenko revealed to Sputnik in September 2018 that while working at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington, DC during the US 2016 presidential election season, he was approached by Oksana Shulyar, an aide to the Ukrainian ambassador, and told that if he had any dirt on Trump or knew other people who did, then he should contact Alexandra Chalupa, a Democratic National Committee (DNC) operative.Furthermore, in his earlier interviews, Telizhenko also told Sputnik that trusted sources in Kiev had divulged to him that they had been paid to write salacious stories about Trump for Christopher Steele, a former MI6 agent-turned-private investigator, who was in turn hired by the DNC to dig up incriminating dirt on Trump.It appears that Telizhenko knew enough to make the US establishment panic and try to sanction him under the pretext of being involved in a “Russia-linked foreign influence network.””I begged them for two years after I got sanctioned. Show me the evidence, why I was sanctioned. I plead I want the US government to tell and show it to me because I want to know what they have on me. They have nothing,” Telizhenko said.© AP Photo / Jacquelyn MartinPresident Barack Obama speaks while meeting with members of the Task Force on 21st Century Policing at the White House on Monday.President Barack Obama speaks while meeting with members of the Task Force on 21st Century Policing at the White House on Monday.
2016 Meeting at Obama White House
According to Telizhenko, the US Intelligence Community and Obama officials deeply interfered in Ukraine’s affairs, and in many ways abused the nation’s independence and sovereignty. “So basically, they would tell us who to hire or who to fire, how to work and how to engage in investigations,” he said, referring to Obama administration officials’ pressure and the establishment of the FBI-backed National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU).
"The reforms the US imposed in Ukraine basically destroyed our government," he said, adding that these reforms, coupled with Ukraine's indebtedness, made the nation powerless, with its government coming completely under foreign rule. "So this is just a great example of how the US is working abroad, what it fought against. I fought for my country to be a powerful country, not a powerless country."
The Ukrainian whistleblower also recalled a January 2016 meeting at the White House that brought together some of Ukraine’s top corruption prosecutors and investigators as well as members of former President Obama’s National Security Council (NSC), FBI, State Department, and Department of Justice (DOJ).Even though the agenda of the meeting was meant to be training and coordination, in reality US and Ukrainian officials discussed Vice President Joe Biden’s family and American lobbyists, closely connected to the Trump campaign, who also allegedly worked for Ukraine’s Party of Regions. The FBI at that time was particularly focused on GOP lobbyist Paul Manafort.
"So basically in that meeting in the White House (…) people are talking to them, telling them, 'do you have information on any people in Ukraine, Americans who work with the former [Viktor Yanukovich] government?' Basically, there was a setup prior to the Manafort case, which came out later, eight months later, after this meeting happened. So they didn't mention any names, Manafort or anybody else for that reason. They just said we need people, Americans, [and] financial information on their work with the former government of Ukraine. At that time, it was the former government of Yanukovych who fled to Russia [after the 2014 coup d'etat in Ukraine – Sputnik]," Telizhenko said.
AmericasReport: FBI Searched University of Delaware in Hunt for Mishandled Classified Biden Docs16 February, 04:35 GMT
House GOP After the Bidens, Again
The former Ukrainian diplomat’s interview with Sputnik came after former Twitter executives appeared before the House Oversight Committee on February 8, insisting there was “no conspiracy” at the company against conservative voices as they discussed the social media network’s suppression of the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story. However, Elon Musk’s Twitter Files, analyzed by Matt Taibbi and other US investigative journalists, indicated that there had been certain collusion between Twitter and federal agencies.Telizhenko highlighted that he was glad to provide information concerning the Bidens and Ukraine-DNC collusion to Republican congressional investigators several years ago and expressed hope that they would continue to dig into this after the GOP gained the majority in the House.”[Senator Ron] Johnson got smeared for me because, I mean, meeting with me and using my information. I was a source of some sort to Senator Grassley. But basically I was proud that it was happening and I was proud that information that I gave to the US Senate is admissible and it was used and it was embarrassing. And they’re still fighting for it,” the former Ukrainian diplomat said.US Republican lawmakers launched a plethora of probes into President Joe Biden and his family, starting with the border crisis and the 2021 Afghanistan pull-out and ending with Hunter’s alleged influence peddling schemes and Biden’s classified documents.”Members of the Biden family have a pattern of peddling access to the highest levels of government to enrich themselves, often to the detriment of US interests. We are committed to following the Biden family and associates’ money trail – consisting of many complex, international transactions worth millions of dollars – and providing answers to the American people,” the House Oversight Committee’s webpage reads.Time will tell whether Republican lawmakers reach out to Telizhenko and other Ukrainian whistleblowers to make a public testimony in the US Congress and shed more light on the Bidens and Team Obama’s Ukraine adventurism.