Former Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul on Thursday blasted President Donald Trump’s foreign policy for the pattern of furthering the political interests of Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin.
McFaul was interviewed about the latest testimony in the impeachment inquiry on MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House” by host Nicolle Wallace.
“What does that mean where on multiple occasions people in the foreign policy world go upstairs to the counsel’s office?” Wallace asked.
“It means they are worried that there is criminal, illegal, wrongful behavior,” McFaul replied. “That’s what it sounds like to me reading what has described in these testimonials.”
“But Lieutenant Colonel Vindman, he is somebody I served with, in Moscow. For him to do that — remember people are forgetting that, you are trained to obey and be part of the chain of command, two decades in the U.S. military — to go outside of that and to say, ‘Hey, I think there is something wrong here,’ It’d have to be something pretty bad. And that’s what it seemed like what happened here.“
”Can I then ask you a broader question? This isn’t just a scandal about a call with anyone. This is a scandal about a call with an American ally being deprived military aid to protect themselves against Russia,” Wallace noted. “How do you see this scandal fitting into larger questions about Donald Trump and his relationship with Russia?”
“I still want to know why, after all these years, he just goes out of his way to defend Vladimir Putin, appease him, do whatever he wants,” McFaul replied.
“And now this phone call undermines Mr. Zelensky withholding military assistance. Man, that is music to Putin’s ears. I just think it’s very damaging to our relationship with Ukraine, and of course that means that’s very good for Vladimir Putin,” he explained.
“And I also want to underscore, just to be clear, it wasn’t just one phone call. That is what we’ve really learned over the last several weeks. This was a multiple-month operation to try to use the public office of the president for his private interests and do nothing to defend Ukraine,” McFaul added.