I had the idea that the whistleblower complaint filed by the unidentified intelligence official who had concerns about the deal that Donald Trump was negotiating with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky was of a general nature, expressing misgivings about a single phone call. But the complaint itself that was filed with the inspector general has been released and it is very detailed and covers events over a period of time and involves multiple sources expressing concerns. It contains even more damaging information than the quasi-transcript of the phone call between Trump and Zelensky. It describes a concerted pattern of pressure applied to Zelensky even before he was sworn into office.
Andy Kroll, Ryan Bort, Tessa Stuart, and Tim Dickinson of Rolling Stone provide the full text of the complaint and, after looking closely at it, list all the problematic aspects that paint a pretty damning picture.
They start by saying that “Trump’s efforts to solicit foreign election interference is at the heart of the complaint”.
On the first page of the complaint, the anonymous whistleblower writes he or she decided to speak out after receiving a pile of evidence that Trump was “using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country in the 2020 US election.” The whistleblower says he or she learned of these efforts by Trump and his allies from more than half a dozen US officials over a period of four months, and that the allegations constituted “a serious or flagrant problem, abuse, or violation of law or Executive Order.” The whistleblower, who was not a direct witness to the incidents outlined in the complaint, goes on to write he or she was “concerned that these actions pose risks to US national security and undermine the US Government’s efforts to deter and counter foreign interference in US elections.”
The authors summarize the other damaging contents under the following headings:
- The White House tried to bury records of Trump’s July 25th call with Zelensky
- The call was part of a broader, months-long campaign to pressure Zelensky
- This wasn’t the first time the White House has tried to suppress a transcript of one of Trump’s calls for political reasons
- Attorney General William Barr appears to have been “involved”
- Officials were concerned about Rudy Giuliani’s efforts to pressure Ukraine into investigating the Bidens
This looks pretty bad. The Trump cult will have to work pretty hard to shut this one down.