They New York Times dropped a bomb. More like a daisy cutter, actually.
The NYT’s latest exposé into the sordid world of the Clinton family suggests a direct connection between the Clinton Foundation, Russian donations (that were not publicly disclosed), and the Russian acquisition of Uranium One. The events transpired while Mrs. Clinton was serving as Secretary of State.
Point for Rand Paul who publicly predicted new, potentially disastrous revelations about the Clinton Foundation just weeks ago.
The dots connected in the NYT story, links reportedly included in the upcoming book, “Clinton Cash”, might be the most serious allegations in the litany of Clinton-family misdeeds thus far.
Beyond mines in Kazakhstan that are among the most lucrative in the world, the sale gave the Russians control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States. Since uranium is considered a strategic asset, with implications for national security, the deal had to be approved by a committee composed of representatives from a number of United States government agencies. Among the agencies that eventually signed off was the State Department, then headed by Mr. Clinton’s wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton.
As the Russians gradually assumed control of Uranium One in three separate transactions from 2009 to 2013, Canadian records show, a flow of cash made its way to the Clinton Foundation. Uranium One’s chairman used his family foundation to make four donations totaling $2.35 million. Those contributions were not publicly disclosed by the Clintons, despite an agreement Mrs. Clinton had struck with the Obama White House to publicly identify all donors. Other people with ties to the company made donations as well.
And shortly after the Russians announced their intention to acquire a majority stake in Uranium One, Mr. Clinton received $500,000 for a Moscow speech from a Russian investment bank with links to the Kremlin that was promoting Uranium One stock.
Whether the donations played any role in the approval of the uranium deal is unknown. But the episode underscores the special ethical challenges presented by the Clinton Foundation, headed by a former president who relied heavily on foreign cash to accumulate $250 million in assets even as his wife helped steer American foreign policy as secretary of state, presiding over decisions with the potential to benefit the foundation’s donors.
The article discusses the subsequent geopolitical ramifications of the deal, and boy is it nasty.
But back to Hillary’s role and the Clinton Foundation.
Before Mrs. Clinton could assume her post as secretary of state, the White House demanded that she sign a memorandum of understanding placing limits on her husband’s foundation’s activities. To avoid the perception of conflicts of interest, beyond the ban on foreign government donations, the foundation was required to publicly disclose all contributors.
To judge from those disclosures — which list the contributions in ranges rather than precise amounts — the only Uranium One official to give to the Clinton Foundation was Mr. Telfer, the chairman, and the amount was relatively small: no more than $250,000, and that was in 2007, before talk of a Rosatom deal began percolating.
But a review of tax records in Canada, where Mr. Telfer has a family charity called the Fernwood Foundation, shows that he donated millions of dollars more, during and after the critical time when the foreign investment committee was reviewing his deal with the Russians. With the Russians offering a special dividend, shareholders like Mr. Telfer stood to profit.
His donations through the Fernwood Foundation included $1 million reported in 2009, the year his company appealed to the American Embassy to help it keep its mines in Kazakhstan; $250,000 in 2010, the year the Russians sought majority control; as well as $600,000 in 2011; and $500,000 in 2012. Mr. Telfer said that his donations had nothing to do with his business dealings, and that he had never discussed Uranium One with Mr. or Mrs. Clinton. He said he had given the money because he wanted to support Mr. Giustra’s charitable endeavors with Mr. Clinton. “Frank and I have been friends and business partners for almost 20 years,” he said.
The Clinton campaign left it to the foundation to reply to questions about the Fernwood donations; the foundation did not provide a response.
Mr. Telfer’s undisclosed donations came in addition to between $1.3 million and $5.6 million in contributions, which were reported, from a constellation of people with ties to Uranium One or UrAsia, the company that originally acquired Uranium One’s most valuable asset: the Kazakhstan mines. Without those assets, the Russians would have had no interest in the deal: “It wasn’t the goal to buy the Wyoming mines. The goal was to acquire the Kazakh assets, which are very good,” Mr. Novikov, the Rosatom spokesman, said in an interview.
The plot only thickens.
Evidently, Clinton officials lied to a NYT reporter about an investor meeting that took place at the Clinton’s home, prior to the Russian acquisition of Uranium One. When Clinton officials were confronted with photographic evidence, they changed their story:
The Clintons are swatting back against the Uranium One, Russia, (UraniumGate?) allegations, but in a non-traditional way, because you know, Hills is like, so mod and edgy:
— Justin Sink (@justinsink) April 23, 2015
Main Clinton defense has been that they've disclosed everything relevant. That claim has been shredded today.
— Stephen Hayes (@stephenfhayes) April 23, 2015
And once again, access to Hillary’s private servers becomes increasingly crucial to the public’s ability to reach the truth.
Follow Kemberlee Kaye on TwitterDONATE
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.