Rudy Giuliani barnstormed into Kyiv this week, doubling down on the campaign for dirt on Joe Biden and the 2016 election which will likely lead to the impeachment of his client, President Donald Trump.
Giuliani’s movements, pieced together from news reports and social media posts in Ukraine, show that he’s meeting with a hodgepodge of conspiracists, rank opportunists, and compromised former prosecutors (takes one to know one!).
Among the meetings the former U.S. attorney and New York mayor has taken:
- two former Ukrainian prosecutors who have proffered extensively debunked theories about Ukrainian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and supposed pressure by Democratic frontrunner Joe Biden to block an investigation into the gas company on whose board his son sat.
- current and former members of Ukrainian parliament who have, in some cases, made newly unfounded corruption allegations against Democratic officials in the U.S.
Below is a rundown of the people known to have met with Giuliani so far on his venture into Ukraine.
Giuliani met Thursday with Andrii Derkach, a member of Ukrainian parliament formerly with the party of Russia-friendly ex-President Viktor Yanukovych.
Since 2017, Derkach has played a public role in alleging that Ukraine interfered in the 2016 election. More recently, he has held a series of press conferences in the Ukrainian capital about “international corruption,” accusing Biden and others of money laundering.
He’s been a leading figure in Ukraine in spreading the allegations. Giuliani’s meeting with him further highlights the extent to which Trump’s personal attorney is continuing his “investigation.”
Derkach announced the meeting in a Facebook post, where he said that he and Giuliani discussed Giuliani participating in the creation of a new international interparliamentary group styling itself as “Friends of Ukraine STOP Corruption.”
Derkach added that Giuliani’s help would be “useful” in that he could provide “international experts, analysts, journalist, and all those” could help expose “facts of the ineffective use of US taxpayer dollars by representatives of Ukraine government agencies.”
Derkach also appears to be using Giuliani as a platform to attempt to interest other GOP bigwigs in his allegations.
The Ukrainian parliament member released letters he had sent trying to expose the “corruption” to Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), OMB director Mick Mulvaney, and Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA).
Written in broken English, the letters outline misuse of U.S. assistance funds delivered to Ukraine under the Obama administration, while advocating for Republican involvement in the “Friends of Ukraine STOP Corruption group.”
“This format may minimize obstruction in our fair and good efforts for the benefit of citizens and prosperity of Ukraine and the United States of America,” reads a representative portion of the letter to Nunes. “Such obstruction may arise due to the fact that the key positions relating to the international activity in the Ukrainian Parliament are being filled by either representatives of grant-eaters also known as “Children of Soros”, or representatives of oligarch Victor Pinchuk which follows up Soros in Ukraine.”
Giuliani met on Wednesday with Viktor Shokin, the country’s former prosecutor general.
The former prosecutor has featured at the center of debunked allegations that Biden used his power as vice president to have Shokin fired for investigating the gas company on whose board Hunter Biden sat.
The problem with that allegation is that Shokin was fired amid massive international pressure on Ukraine to do so. The criticism was not that Shokin was too aggressive, but rather that his purpose seemed to be to sit on grand corruption cases without investigating them, either dismissing the cases or waiting for the statue of limitations to run out on the underlying allegations.
Since his dismissal in March 2016, Shokin has gone on the offensive against Biden and apparently teamed up with Giuliani to do so.
He filed an affidavit with two pro-Trump TV talking head lawyers – Victoria Toensing and Joe DiGenova – laying out his allegations against Biden, which also served to paint indicted Ukrainian oligarch Dmytro Firtash as another victim of the former vice president.
Shokin, reports suggest, will feature in the documentary film about the allegations that brought Giuliani to Kyiv.
While in Kyiv, Giuliani also met with Konstantin Kulyk, another former prosecutor.
Dogged by various graft allegations throughout his career as an assistant to former prosecutor general Yuriy Lutsenko, he came into focus in the scandal as a person that former US Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch reportedly asked to be fired.
Kulyk reportedly created a seven-page dossier on Hunter Biden about his work for Burisma, the Ukrainian gas company on whose board Biden sat.
Kolomoisky denied Wednesday to TPM that he knew Kulyk.
“They are quite close,” said Volodymyr Fesenko, a Kyiv-based political analyst.
Kulyk lasted as a prosecutor until last month, when he was fired for failing to show up for a mandatory exam for all employees of the country’s prosecution office.
“If Kulyk has some information on Burisma or Hunter Biden, he’s an odd and adventurous enough person to spread it,” Fesenko added.