Former White House adviser Fiona Hill severely criticized the Republican members of the Congress. The impeachment inquiry against U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday was where Hill stated that the GOP were promoting a "fictional narrative" that Ukraine meddled in the 2016 election.
Hill is a former specialist on Russia for the National Security Council. In a report by The Globe and Mail, she detailed the pressure campaign that the president orchestrated to get Kyiv to investigate both this conspiracy theory of Ukraine helping the Democratic Party and Joe Biden in a bid to beat his political rivals ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
She warns that these "falsehoods" that the Republican members of the House intelligence committee continue to repeat are only helping the Kremlin.
In her statement, Hill said "This is a fictional narrative that has been perpetrated and propagated by the Russian security services themselves. I would ask that you please not promote politically driven falsehoods that so clearly advance Russian interests."
The session includes a testimony from a U.S. diplomat who claims it was common knowledge in the U.S. embassy in Kyiv that the president was holding onto $400-million in military aid to Ukraine with an invitation to the White House for its President to make them agree to the probes he was demanding.
David Holmes, a staffer at the mission in Kyiv, said "Of course, the President is pushing for a Biden investigation before he'll do these things the Ukrainians want. It was obvious what the President was pushing for."
Holmes and Hill both focus on the president's appointed ambassador Gordon Sondland who was said to be the central to the pressure campaign. In her testimony, Hill told the jury that she confronted Sondland on his meeting Ukrainian officials, not following regular diplomatic protocols. She said that he replied how he only reports directly under the president, White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. She stated "He was being involved in a domestic political errand, and we were being involved in national security foreign policy, and those two things had just diverged. Id did say to him... 'Gordon, I think this is all going to blow up.' And here we are."
Hill also relayed another occasion where Sondland told her that he had a deal with Mulvaney to trade an Oval Office invitation for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for the investigations. She said this took place in the Mess Room, in front of two senior Ukrainan officials, presidential adviser Andrey Yermak and then-security adviser Alex Danylyuk. She also quoted then-national security adviser John Bolton replying to her report "Tell them I am not part of whatever drug deal Mulvaney and Sondland are cooking up."
Holmes on the other hand recants Sondland shutting him out of a meeting with Yerak at the U.S. embassy in Kyiv last July 26 as he did not want anyone in the room taking notes.
Republican Devin Nunes responds at Hill's open criticism "It's entirely possible for two separate nations to engage in election meddling at the same time."