Alleged Ukraine “whistleblower” Eric Ciaramella was among a handful of other Obama foreign policy officials who received a flurry of emails and phone calls from George Soros’s Open Society Foundation in 2016 offering guidance on Ukraine policy, State Department memos show.
The emails, made public in August of 2019 as part of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request by the conservative group Citizens United, reveal that left-wing mega donor George Soros had access to President Obama’s national security team and apparently had influence on the administration’s Ukraine policies
The FOIA request was unrelated to Ciaramella, who has since been identified as the anti-Trump complainant whose allegations against the president spurred congressional Democrats’ to launch an impeachment inquiry. The emails informed team Obama about Soros’s objectives and activities in Ukraine.
Ciaramella was a primary recipient of the Open Society emails in 2016, along with then-Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland, who was instrumental in disseminating the Steele dossier throughout the Obama State Department. While Nuland was working with then-special envoy Jonathan Winer to get the anti-Trump dossier in front of then–secretary of state John Kerry, she was also receiving updates on Ukraine issues from dossier author Christopher Steele and George Soros.
In June of 2016, Jeff Goldstein, the senior policy analyst for Eurasia at the Open Society Foundations, sent an email to Nuland and Ciaramella about Soros’s meeting with the European Commissioner for Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Aaron Klein of Breitbart News reported.
I wanted to let you know that Mr. Soros met with Johannes Hahn in Brussels earlier today. One of the issues he raised was concern over the decision to delay the visa liberalization for Georgia and the implications for Ukraine.
The email revealed that “GS” – meaning Soros – “is also meeting [Georgian] President [Giorgi] Margvelashvili today and speaking with PM Groyman,” referring to Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman.
The email stated that Soros told Hahn “that Ukrainian civil society is concerned that without reciprocity from the EU for steps Ukraine has taken to put in place sensitive anti-corruption and anti-discrimination legislation and institutions it will not be possible to continue to use the leverage of EU instruments and policies to maintain pressure for reforms in the future.”
Soros also “urged Hahn to advocate with member states to move ahead with visa liberalization for Ukraine,” according to the email.
“I’m sure you’ve been working this issue hard; if you have any thoughts on how this is likely to play out or where particular problems lie I’d appreciate if you could let us know,” the email concluded.
Nuland wrote in reply that she would prefer to speak by phone and they scheduled a time. Goldstein wrote that Soros specifically asked that an employee from his “personal office” join the call with Nuland.
Johannes Hahn is deeply involved with the Atlantic Council, a Washington D.C.-based think tank that works in partnership with, and is partially financed by Burisma Holdings, the notoriously corrupt Ukrainian energy firm connected to Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden.
Last August, a staffer for House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) attended a meeting in Ukraine with Bill Taylor, the Chargé d’Affaires, of the United States Embassy in Kyiv, that was organized by the Atlantic Council. Taylor was one of Schiff’s star witnesses in the impeachment inquiry. Thomas Eager, the staffer who met with Taylor, has a “close relationship” with the organization as well.
Ciaramella and Nuland reportedly worked very closely together on Ukraine policy during the Obama years.