Sunday, October 24, 2021
Miles from the Mainstream
D. R. ZUKERMAN, proprietor

An Open Letter to Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky

September 10, 2021 --

Excellency:

This is to request an interview on your next visit to the United States, perhaps should  you come back later this month to speak at the opening session of the United Nations, when world leaders address this international organization.  I make this request because some questions come to mind concerning your meeting …

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… at the White House with President Biden, on matters not mentioned in media coverage of your visit, and also because questions linger over your well-known phone conversation with President Trump, in July 2019, when Mr. Trump called you to congratulate you on your Servant of the People Party's great success in parliamentary elections --  success that followed by three months your overwhelming win over the incumbent, Petro Poroshenko, in the presidential election where your received 73% of the vote compared to his 25%.

First, concerning your meeting with President Biden.  I saw a report online, I cannot relocate it, that you were disappointed he said you must deal with corruption in your country before he can consider your request for NATO membership.  Is this accurate?  Are you making advances in dealing with corruption that Mr. Biden is overlooking.

The transcript of your phone conversation with President Trump indicated that you would indeed look into corruption issues in Ukraine, and, more specifically, concerning the involvement of Mr. Biden's son Hunter, who famously got a reported $83,000 a month from the Burisma gas company, just for sitting as a director on the board.  President Trump pointed out that Mr. Biden bragged about threatening to withhold $1 billion of aid for Ukraine if the prosecutor looking into Burisma-related issues was not replaced.  Do you believe President Biden is again pressuring you not to look into Ukraine corruption issues if the strike Mr, Biden to close to his home?

I note that in remarks to the press, before you had your closed-door session with Biden, he said he hoped you would make advances in democratic reforms.  Why didn't you point out that you are the democratically-elected head of state of Ukraine, and your political party won a parliamentary majority in democratic elections -- or did you correct Biden on this, privately?

You heard Biden say that he supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.  He said this on September 1 -- the 82nd anniversary, by the way, of the start of World War II, in which Ukraine suffered terribly from invasion by Nazi Germany -- two days after he acted, against the advice of military advisers and to the dismay of NATO members, to quit Afghanistan totally, leaving the country in the hands of the Taliban enemy.  Do you really take seriously assurances you get from a man who has left the people of Afghanistan to the not-so-tender mercies of the Taliban?

I was struck by a casual comment from Biden, meeting with you and the press before your closed-door talks.  He said that he had the opportunity to talk with you in Ukraine "years ago."  Could you tell us about any conversation, or conversations, you had in Ukraine with Biden?  When did they take place?  What did you talk about?  Was that before you decided to run for president, when you were playing a fictional Ukraine president on the "Servant of the People" show -- which is where your party gets its name?  I don't know if you are aware that Biden has a reputation of exaggerating things,  Was he likewise exaggerating when he said he talked with you in Ukraine?   For example, was he visiting your tv studio and simply congratulated you as star of your popular show? 

You told President Trump that you have friends in New York City and visited the city, even staying at a Trump hotel.  Did you mention this to Biden?

About Mr. Trump, you knew that he was impeached based on a false slant on your phone call with him.  Let m, step back.  Do you think there was anything wrong about your phone call with Mr. Trump.. Did you think he was seeking your help in discrediting the Biden family based on false charges, or did you believe he asked for your help out of genuine concern that the Bidens were up to no good in Ukraine?   Did you ever offer to give a statement to the impeachment investigation setting forth your view of the phone conversation with Mr. Trump that was a key element in the impeachment proceeding.  After all, American diplomats testified about their  biased view of the phone call and Mr. Trump's Ukraine policy. They even suggested that they, not the president, are in charge of foreign policy. Did you agree with their testimony that certainly was used by Democrats to attack President Trump?

Specifically, one of the witnesses against Mr. Trump was Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, who was mentioned  by Mr.Trump in a disparaging context.  What the Democrats succeeded in keeping under wraps was that in that same conversation, you agreed with the president, going so far to say that she preferred your predecessor over you.  Did you ever think of contacting Mr. Trump to help correct the false view presented by Democrats against the legitimately-elected American president?  

And now, with Biden and you discussing the shipment to Ukraine of Javelin missiles, couldn't you have pointed out that Biden is merely following Mr. Trump's policy, which included sending Javelins to you during his presidency, a subject mentioned in passing in your famous July 2019 phone conversation with President Trump, made public two years ago this month.

These are some of the issues I would appreciate discussing with you on your next visit to the United States.

Before I forget, let me wish you a happy, healthy, successful 5782 -- Shana Tovah and allow one further question.   Prior to the start of successive elections leading to his defeat as prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu visited you in Ukraine. Are you considering  an official visit, now, to Israel?  As I recall you and Mr. Netanyahu spoke of the historic  ties between Ukraine and the Jewish people. (For one thing, the great Jewish leaer Ze'ev Jabotinsky was born in Odessa,  He died too young, in 1940, age 60. Perhaps G-d did not want Jabo to see the Holocaust that he warned Europe's Jews was to come.)  As alternative to joining NATO, have you given thought to an  official military,  economic and strategic relationship with Israel?

Accept, Excellency, assurances of my highest consideration,

David Zukernan

With assuranxes of my highest consideration.