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Hunter Biden’s Murky Dealings In Ukraine And Trump’s Show Trial – OpEd

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Despite Hunter Biden’s publicly acknowledged despicable vices, including substance abuse, extramarital affairs and financial corruption, the mainstream media seems to be giving credit to Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden for helping his son get through rough phases of life. Had Eric or Donald Trump Jr. been in his place, would the media still have been as sparing and sympathetic or would it have crucified Donald Trump for being a bad influence over his children?

An excerpt from the New Yorker’s detailed biographical account [1] of Hunter Biden in July last year serves as an indictment of his moral depravity: “Hunter Biden has struggled for decades with alcohol addiction and drug abuse; he went through an acrimonious divorce from his first wife, Kathleen Buhle Biden; and he had a subsequent relationship with Beau’s widow, Hallie. He was recently sued for child support by an Arkansas woman, Lunden Alexis Roberts, who claims that he is the father of her child.”

An August 21 article [2] from the Business Insider further illustrates how former Vice President Joe Biden used his official appointment and political influence to shield his son from indefensible allegations of financial corruption:

“As his father found his place at the top of Washington, Hunter Biden launched several new business efforts that raised eyebrows. In September 2008, Hunter Biden launched a consulting firm, Seneca Global Advisors, and in June 2009, Hunter cofounded the private-equity firm Rosemont Seneca Partners. The aforementioned New Yorker report described that through his companies and his partners, Hunter Biden established various business connections to figures in China and Russia.

“Hunter Biden’s tumultuous personal life became tabloid fodder during and after his father’s time with the administration. He sparked confusion when he, then 44 years old, enlisted in the Navy Reserves in 2012, less than two years before reports broke that the Reserve discharged him in 2014 after he tested positive for cocaine.

“Within one month of his term on the board of Burisma Holdings of Ukraine expiring, a bombshell New York Times story published on May 1, 2019, detailed Joe and Hunter Biden’s ties to Ukraine and said the former vice president had successfully gotten a Ukrainian prosecutor removed from office.

“The move raised questions about a possible conflict of interest and if Joe Biden was trying to shield his son from an investigation into the company, whose founder faced multiple investigations into allegations of tax evasion and money laundering. Joe Biden has since publicly detailed his threat to withhold $1 billion in loan guarantees from the country if the Ukrainian prosecutor investigating Burisma Holdings money-laundering and corrupt practices wasn’t fired.”

The May 2019 New York Times report [3] was far from a “bombshell,” as alluded to in the aforementioned excerpts, nevertheless it set in motion a series of events that eventually culminated in the initiation of impeachment proceedings against President Trump in September last year:

“In 2014, Mr. Archer, the Kerry family friend, and Hunter Biden were part of a wave of Americans who would come from across the Atlantic to help Burisma both with its substantive legal issues and its image. Their support allowed Burisma to create the perception that it was backed by powerful Americans at a time when Ukraine was especially dependent on aid and strategic backing from the United States and its allies, according to people who worked in Ukraine at the time.

“Hunter Biden’s work in Ukraine appears to have been well compensated. Burisma paid $3.4 million to a company called Rosemont Seneca Bohai LLC from mid-April 2014, when Hunter Biden and Mr. Archer joined the board, to late 2015, according to the financial data provided by the Ukrainian deputy prosecutor. The payments continued after that, according to people familiar with the arrangement.

“Rosemont Seneca Bohai was controlled by Mr. Archer, who left Burisma’s board after he was charged in connection with a scheme to defraud pension funds and an Indian tribe of tens of millions of dollars. Bank records submitted in that case — which resulted in a conviction for Mr. Archer that was overturned in November — show that Rosemont Seneca Bohai made regular payments to Mr. Biden that totaled as much as $50,000 in some months.”

After reading between the lines, it becomes abundantly clear that the impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump were nothing more than a show trial. The Democrats initiated the impeachment inquiry against Trump in September 2019 as a diversionary tactic to cover up the sleazy dealings of Hunter Biden with Burisma Holdings of Ukraine, and consequent discrediting of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

Although the Democrats had the requisite majority in the House of Representatives to impeach Donald Trump, the Senate was controlled by the Republicans. Besides, convicting a president of impeachment requires two-third majority in the Senate that the Democrats never had. Then what was the purpose of initiating the proceedings if not to distract attention from the media trial of Hunter Biden, which was bringing damning press coverage not only to the Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden but to the Democratic Party as a whole?

Leaving partisan interpretations of the US Constitution aside, an accused is presumed innocent until proved guilty, according to a fundamental axiom of modern jurisprudence. Then how can it be said that Trump is an “impeached president”? By such paradoxical legal interpretations, if a mala fide litigator maliciously accuses an innocent person of murder, could it be said that the person is a murderer simply because he was indicted of the offense but was never convicted of having committed a murder?

Lastly, Donald Trump’s unorthodox approach to the conduct of diplomatic relations has been a persistent thorn in the side of America’s national security establishment for the last four years, and mainstream shills often wonder why Washington’s relations with traditional allies, including Britain, France, Germany and Canada, have soured during the tenure of the Trump administration.

The fact is that like a typical American, Trump regards America’s allies, such as Boris Johnson, Emmanuel Macron, Angela Merkel and Justin Trudeau, as subordinates beholden to him personally; whereas he treats adversaries, such as Russian President Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, as independent leaders deserving equal treatment and respect. Nevertheless, it’s an inconsequential matter of interpersonal attitude and etiquette than anything having diplomatic repercussions.

The conspiracy theories perpetuated by the establishment-controlled media that Trump is Putin’s “useful idiot” and alleged Russian interference in America’s domestic politics are sheer fabrications reminiscent of the McCarthyism of the fifties.

Russian netizens indeed lent moral support to the Trump campaign in the run-up to the 2016 US presidential race but simply because they despised Hillary Clinton, who the Russians regarded as an interventionist hawk responsible for initiating proxy wars in Libya and Syria in 2011 as Obama’s secretary of state, and also because she was the wife of former Democratic President Bill Clinton who was responsible for the break-up of former Yugoslavia in the nineties.

Despite the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 US elections, Trump lost the popular vote to Hillary by a margin of 2.87 million votes. Had it not been for the archaic electoral college system and James Comey, then the director of FBI, opening last-minute investigation into Hillary Clinton using personal computers for official communications, she was the favorite to win the elections.

According to Washington’s own intelligence estimates, three powers are currently vying for interference in upcoming presidential elections slated for November 3. Two of those, China and Iran, favor Joe Biden because Trump initiated trade war with China and unilaterally annulled Iran nuclear deal in May 2018, whereas Russia allegedly supports Trump because Putin apparently has an unmistakable crush on Slovenian beauty pageant Melania.

Trump is reputed to be a staunch conservative, and it’s a known empirical observation that conservatives typically are considerably more patriotic than liberals. Collaborating with foreign powers to undermine one’s national interest doesn’t appeal to the conservative mindset.

Throughout its four-year tenure, the Trump administration has continued with the policy of its predecessors. If anything, diplomatic relations between Washington and Moscow have significantly worsened during Trump’s tumultuous four-year tenure and a New Cold War has begun between the arch-rivals.

Nauman Sadiq

Nauman Sadiq

Nauman Sadiq is an Islamabad-based attorney, columnist and geopolitical analyst focused on the politics of Af-Pak and MENA regions, neocolonialism and Petroimperialism.

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