Politics: Vindman ends opening statement in impeachment hearing with message to father: 'Do not worry, I will be fine for telling the truth' - - PressFrom - US
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Politics Vindman ends opening statement in impeachment hearing with message to father: 'Do not worry, I will be fine for telling the truth'

19:28  19 november  2019
19:28  19 november  2019 Source:   businessinsider.com

Pentagon chief: No penalty for officer in impeachment probe

  Pentagon chief: No penalty for officer in impeachment probe Defense Secretary Mark Esper says an Army officer has no reason to fear retribution for testifying before Congress in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump. Esper was asked about potential retribution for Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman during a trip Monday to New York. The defense secretary said the Pentagon "has protections for whistleblowers" who report waste, fraud or abuse.

Video by ABC News

    Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman concluded his opening statement in the third day of public impeachment hearings on Tuesday with an emotional message to his father that celebrated the rights and freedoms enjoyed by US citizens.

    Vindman came to the US as a child from Ukraine when it was still part of the Soviet Union. In his testimony on Tuesday, the Army Lieutenant Colonel and National Security Council (NSC) official applauded his father for making the decision to flee Ukraine in the late 1970s and settle the family in the US.

    White House: NSC Ukraine expert wrote summary of April Trump-Zelensky call that conflicts with rough transcript

      White House: NSC Ukraine expert wrote summary of April Trump-Zelensky call that conflicts with rough transcript The White House appears to be blaming Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman for misleading reporters about the contents of an April 21 phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. © Provided by MediaDC: Washington Newspaper Publishing Company, Inc.Vindman is the top Ukraine expert on the White House National Security Council. On Friday, the White House released a rough transcript of the call that appeared to conflict with a separate summary of the call sent to reporters in April.

    "Dad, my sitting here today, in the US Capitol talking to our elected officials, is proof that you made the right decision 40 years ago to leave the Soviet Union and come here to the United States of America in search of a better life for our family," Vindman said. "Do not worry, I will be fine for telling the truth."

    At another point, the former refugee reflected on the fact that he would not be able to speak so freely in many countries around the world.

    "My simple act of appearing here today ... would not be tolerated in many places around the world," Vindman said, adding that in Russia "offering public testimony involving the president would surely cost me my life."

    Alexander Vindman's lawyer is not helping him or the impeachment effort

      Alexander Vindman's lawyer is not helping him or the impeachment effort Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman is many things, including a Purple Heart recipient who took a bomb for our freedoms in Iraq, a career foreign service officer, and, we're told, a great American patriot. What Vindman is not, however, is an important witness to the impeachment inquiry against President Trump. Unlike other witnesses who have testified publicly, Vindman had extensive direct contact with Trump throughout the spring and summer. But Vindman only witnessed two disturbing events.

    Slideshow by photo services

    Vindman, the top expert on Ukraine on the NSC, was on the July 25 call between US President Donald Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that sparked a whistleblower complaint and spiraled into the impeachment inquiry. In the call, Trump urged Zelensky to launch investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, and a debunked conspiracy theory regarding the 2016 US presidential election.

    Trump's Defenders Have No Defense

      Trump's Defenders Have No Defense Witnesses were uneven, but even his closest allies don’t try to deny he did what he’s accused of doing.Look, the case has been made. Almost everything in the impeachment hearings this week fleshed out and backed up the charge that President Trump muscled Ukraine for political gain. The pending question is what precisely the House and its Democratic majority will decide to include in the articles of impeachment, what statutes or standards they will assert the president violated.

    During Tuesday's hearing, Vindman described the July 25 call as "inappropriate" and said what he had heard had

    "It is improper for the president of the United States to demand a foreign government investigate a US citizen and political opponent," Vindman said.

    Vindman, a decorated Iraq War veteran, has been attacked by the president and his allies for participating in the impeachment inquiry. Trump has sought to publicly malign multiple witnesses in the inquiry, which Vindman alluded to in scathing terms on Tuesday.

    "The vile character attacks on these distinguished and honorable public servants is reprehensible," Vindman said.

    • Read more of Insider's impeachment coverage:
    • Here's who's scheduled to testify in this week's impeachment inquiry hearings
    • Think Trump will get impeached? Gambling sites say the odds are in your favor
    • Trump could be impeached and removed from office but still win reelection in 2020
    • Over half of the House of Representatives support the impeachment inquiry against Trump - see all of them here
    • Everything you need to know about Trump's impeachment process: What's happened, who the players are, and what comes next

    Trump's Defenders Have No Defense .
    Witnesses were uneven, but even his closest allies don’t try to deny he did what he’s accused of doing.Look, the case has been made. Almost everything in the impeachment hearings this week fleshed out and backed up the charge that President Trump muscled Ukraine for political gain. The pending question is what precisely the House and its Democratic majority will decide to include in the articles of impeachment, what statutes or standards they will assert the president violated.

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