President Trump, Quid Pro Quos and U.S.-Ukraine Relations: Five Observations

Over the past two weeks, a CIA whistleblower’s complaint, a White House record of a July 25 telephone conversation between President Donald Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, and texts exchanged by American diplomats have dominated the news and raised questions about the president’s handling of policy toward Ukraine. Here are five observations: SECOND PARAGRAPH First, President Trump was not doing the nation’s business on July 25. Trump has described the call as “perfect,” but the memorandum of conversation shows that he did not seek to advance U.S. interests. He did not ask Zelensky about progress in ending Russia’s war against Ukraine. He did not propose steps to facilitate more American trade. He did not raise how U.S. liquified natural gas might strengthen Ukraine’s energy security (something of interest to Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, whom Trump now says instigated a call that he did not want to make).

 

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