Zelensky Felt He Needed to Make An Announcement, Even Though He “Knew It Was A Bad Idea”
November 13, 2019
Trump and Republicans keep claiming Ukraine felt no pressure from the United States to announce the opening of investigations into Trump’s political opponents. That’s false. As Taylor just testified, Zelensky felt he needed to announce the investigations that Trump wanted on CNN, even though he knew it was a bad idea — the stakes of losing military aid were too high.
Taylor testified that the Ukrainian president “knew it was a bad idea to interfere in other people’s elections.”
Taylor testimony: “His staff was making plans to have him make some kind of announcement… even though he knew it was a bad idea to interfere in other people’s elections.”
Despite that, Zelensky felt he needed to make an announcement on CNN of the investigations that Trump wanted.
New York Times: “Finally bending to the White House request, Mr. Zelensky’s staff planned for him to make an announcement in an interview on Sept. 13 with Fareed Zakaria, the host of a weekly news show on CNN.”
Zelensky had no other choice. Ukraine needs U.S. support and military aid to defend itself from Russian aggression. Withholding it endangers Ukrainian lives.
Bill Taylor testimony: “Over 13,000 Ukrainians had been killed in the war, one or two a week. More Ukrainians would undoubtedly die without the U.S. assistance.”
Taylor and Vindman previously testified that “more Ukrainians would undoubtedly die without the U.S. assistance.”
Taylor Deposition: “Ambassador Volker and I could see the armed and hostile Russian-led forces on the other side of the damaged bridge across the line of contact. Over 13,000 Ukrainians had been killed in the war, one or two a week. More Ukrainians would undoubtedly die without U.S. assistance.”
Vindman Deposition: “U.S. aid would amount to a fairly significant portion of their GDP. And in order to undertake even the basic things like reforms, developing the kinds of skills that they need to more effectively defend themselves against Russian aggression, it was critical.”