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tv   NEWS LIVE - 30  Al Jazeera  November 19, 2019 8:00pm-8:34pm +03

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venom and as part of your policy portfolio in the white house you maintain a relationship with ukrainian officials do you not that is correct you explained earlier in your testimony that your job was in the white house was to coordinate. united states and ukraine policy is that right. it is to coordinate united states policy visibly ukraine correct. you testified in the spring of this year that these officials these ukrainian officials began asking you quote advice on how to respond to mr giuliani's advances in quote is that current or that is correct what do you understand they meant by mr giuliani's advances i understood that to mean both his public commentary so publicly calling for investigations into 2016. very smart and hunter biden as well as his direct overtures to the government of ukraine. directly or through proxies that's what i understand and as you understand
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it under whose authority do you think mr giuliani was acting under congresswoman i don't know. did the ukraine caney and fishes you spoke to understand that mr giuliani was telling them to investigate vice president biden's son and debunk the 2016 conspiracy theories i'm sorry consider going to do you think that the ukrainian officials that you spoke to understood the underlining meaning of. mr giuliani's advances to be both investigating the bidens as well as debunking the 2016 conspiracy theories yes i think to be clear i think you're referring to. debunking that it was a russian interference actually now was somehow implicating themselves or was ukraine interference or not exactly now was this official us foreign policy to push for investigation into the bind. it was not part of any process by participate or
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not miss williams do you agree that pressing these 2 investigations was inconsistent with official u.s. ukraine policy obviously anti-corruption reforms as a big part of our policy i understand i was not in a position to determine whether these particular investigations were purposely or colonel is it true that mr president trump directed the ukrainian president on the call on july 25th to work with mr giuliani on these investigations that is correct in fact mr giuliani has made no secret of the fact that he is acting on behalf of president trump as mr giuliani told the new york times and i'm going to put this on the screen. he told them quote my only client is the present the united states he is the one i have the obligation to report to tell him and to tell him what happens he added that the investigations will be quote very very helpful to my client and
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may turn out to be helpful to my government in quote. colonel is it fair to say the ukrainian officials that you are on a daily basis while you're in contact with given your portfolio were concerned about mr giuliani's advances yes they were in your assessment did they understand the political nature of the request being asked of them i believe they did or did they understand that it was affecting u.s. domestic policy i'm not sure what they frankly understood about us if they understood the implications yes now you testified earlier that you warned the ukrainians not to get involved in u.s. domestic policy is that right i counsel them yes counsel them in fact you testified that. that they that you felt like it was important that you were exposing not just
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what you thought but but but tradition and policy of the united states to say that it is what i knew for a fact to be a u.s. policy now why do you think it's important for foreign governments not to get involved in political affairs of a nation like united states congress from the 1st thought that comes to mind is a russian and if your interference in 2016 the input impact that had on internal politics and the consequences it had for russia itself exactly said ministration. enforced sanctions and heavy sanctions against russia for their interference that would not be in u.s. policy to end so mr mesereau was colonel and running out of time and is it is a normal for the for a private citizen a non us government official to get involved in foreign policy in foreign affairs like mr giuliani i don't know if i have the experience of say that but it certainly
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wasn't helpful and didn't help advance u.s. interests thank you mr chairman i yield back mr turner. ms williams little girl vaniman i want to thank you also for your service your knowledge and expertise is incredibly important as we look to formulating policy with both our allies and to try to counter those who are not our allies. i think we're all very concerned about european policy and how it can thwart russian aggression. ms williams and you are responsible as you said as part of your portfolio you advised the vice president about ukraine correct correct lieutenant colonel venom and you said that you were the principal in your opening you say you were the principal adviser to the president on ukraine and you coordinate you u.s. ukraine policy correct. congressman in this statement this morning i i probably ease that back i took that off my day job description that i have on my evil but i certainly spent much more time advising them basser and i did the president i do
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know about it but your statement as you submitted and read it today says at the n.s.c. i am the principal adviser to the national security adviser and the president under great pressure that is not what i read into the transcript that might have been what i had in there yesterday when i was drafting it but i chose to ease back on that language even though it was in my evaluation just because i didn't want to but you wrote in my role you wrote what i just read what congressman what i'm saying is what i read into the record this morning. didn't say that ok noted. because you know ukraine you know that we work through our allies and our multilateral relations and you know that the ukraine is aspiring member of the e.u. and nato right ms williams yes that's correct the to girvan and yes correct and you know that probably that the e.u. and the nato and nato both have offices in the ukraine and that we try to advance
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our policy. but the u.n. nato and you would agree that our ambassador kay bailey hutchinson investor sunlit would be responsible for advancing our policy interest with ukraine at the e.u. and at nato right ms williams i would say that certainly in terms of the specific relationship between nato and ukraine that would still would fall to ambassador hutchison and between the e.u. and ukraine to master saw online but obviously we have an ambassador in ukraine as well but it's a girl that even you would agree i agree with that miss williams great. now. to the colonel you said in your written statement that mayor rudolph giuliani promoted false information that undermine the united states ukraine policy have you ever met giuliani. just to be a good actor i said false narrative just because that's what i said in the records for him but i have not met him and so you've never had a conversation with him about ukraine or been in a meeting where him work with him where he's spoken to others about ukraine know
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just what i saw him. you know his comments on t.v. news or you know news yes and certainly you've never met the president i'd say it's right that is correct that you've never advised the president i'd say it's on your brain i advise them indirectly made all his preparations for the calls and the years he never spoke to the president says and told him advice on ukraine that is correct so in your written same you said in may i attended the inauguration of president selenski as part of the present delegation led by secretary perry following the visit the members of the delegation provided present trouble briefing that's not really accurate right because the members didn't because you were a member but you weren't in that meeting were you that is correct so we'll just have no there that that meeting occurred without you that you do know that this impeachment inquiry is about the present state so you live there and i do represent effects now you said that you're responsible for coordinating u.s. ukranian policy correct does the secretary of state pump a report to you. he does not ambassador volcker. he does not but we
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coordinate ambassador of ukraine e.u. nato assistant secretary for europe anyone it you report to you with respect to your responsibilities of of coordinating u.s. policy with ukraine congressman at my level i convene what's called a sub policy cordoning committee that deputy assistant secretary i coordinate with i chair those meetings and is there anybody need your approval in your role on ukraine policy to formulate ukraine policy they seek your approval according to the pm for the policy signed by the president so he can do cornered by the he does you and i see correct. do you have any information that any person who has testified as part of this impeachment inquiry either in secret or in public has either perjured themselves or lied to this committee i have not read the other testimonies and you know do you have any evidence though that they have perjured themselves or lied you know because i have not read them the general vandeman do
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you have any evidence that anyone who is testified before this committee in the impeachment inquiry has perjured themselves or lied to this committee not that i'm aware of your book scorsone thank you chairmanship to yield to the chairman i think jennifer yielding wanted to. just make one point clear for folks that are watching the hearing today bribery doesn't vava quid pro quo bribery involves the conditioning of an official act or something of value. an official act may be a white house meeting an official act maybe 400000000 in military aid and something of value to a president might include investigations of their political rival the reason we don't ask witnesses that are fact witnesses to make the judgment about whether a crime or bribery has been committed or whether more significantly the what the founders had in mind. when they itemize bribery or other high crimes and
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misdemeanors is your fact witnesses it will be our job to decide whether the impeachable act of bribery has occurred that's why we don't ask you those questions for one thing you're also not aware of all the other facts that have been duce during the investigation that you're back to mr carson thank you chairman thank you both for your service colonel boom and you were in a july 10th white house meeting and ambassador bolton offices and their rights are i'm sorry could you say that again you were in a july 10th white house meeting with embassador both correct in that meeting ukrainians ask about when they would get their oval office meeting and ambassador salim replied that they need to quote speak about ukraine delivering specific investigations in order to secure a meeting with the president in quotes is that correct sir that is correct colonel them and did you later learn why ambassador bolton cut the meeting short i did.
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after ambassador bolton into that meeting serves some of the group that attended follow one meeting in a different room in the white house called the ward room is that correct sir that is correct and ambassador simon was there with the senior ukrainian officials is that correct that is correct. that in this the lawyers tell you to come directly to them sir if you had any other concerns after july 10th they say i said that i believe the words were something to the effect of if you have any other concerns feel free to come back. and in this follow on meeting sir ambassador simon left your words no ambiguity about what specific investigations he was requesting embassador sound and made clear that he was requesting an investigation of vice president joe biden's son isn't that correct sir that is correct and he stated that he was asking these requests in coordination with chief of staff white house chief of staff made any threats or that is why herm say colonel in your
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career had you ever before witnessed an american official requests that a foreign government investigate a u.s. citizen who is related to the president's political opponent i have not. and colonel. you immediately raised concerns about this correct or that is correct what exactly happened after i reported to the i'm sorry. i'm sorry could you say that again as you raise concerns about this correct sir correct what happened to that to ambassador solomon if i understood you correctly i stated that it was inappropriate and had nothing to do with national security policy did you also raise concern that day with white house lawyers i did what did you tell them i reported the same thing that i reported the content of the conversation with a bass or someone at that point i wasn't aware that dr hill had had
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a conversation with a basketball and so i just relayed what i had what what i experienced said to the attorney the legal counsel as we are now where search and bass are both expressed his concerns and instructed dr fiona hill your supervisor to also meet with the same white house lawyers to tell them what happened. colonel denman i agree that there is no question that ambassador starman was proposing a transaction to ukrainian officials trading white house meetings for specific investigations but the full awareness of the president's chief of staff white house attorneys and his national security adviser my view sort of that's appalling thank you both for your service i yield back to the chairman thank the gentleman i would just point out as well that when the matter does move to the judiciary committee and no decision has been made about the ultimate resolution of the white house through its counsel will have the opportunity to submit or make a submission to the judiciary committee i now turn to dr webster
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thank you mr chairman lieutenant colonel dinon thank you very much for being here as an army colonel who served a year in iraq i appreciate your service and sacrifice that you made during that time and i know the environment and i understand appreciate the importance of chain of command in your deposition you emphasize the importance of chain of command you were direct report to dr fiona hill and then mr tim morrison and they were your seniors correct that is correct when you had concerns about this 725 call between the 2 presidents you didn't go to mr morrison about that did you. immediately went to john eisenberg lead legal counsel so that doesn't seem like a change of command so it was not in the deposition with ms i'm sorry or said page 50 answer the 60 understand excuse me journeys allow colonel that meant answer so i reported to dr john eisenberg i attempted to report it to mr morse and i did ok thank you but he didn't develop self and at that point i was told not to say well
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he didn't say i just often i'll get into it and he has a lot of the witness to finish for or you finish with your answer yes thank you. ok in your in the morrison deposition on page 58 to 60 is the question was do you know if anyone else on the call went to eisenberg to express concerns in your answer and the answer was i learned based on today's proceedings based on open source reporting which i have no firsthand knowledge of other personnel did raise concerns question who based on open source without firsthand knowledge alex of inman on my on. my staff question then and he reports to you correct answer he does lieutenant colonel ramon's direct report was mr morse and it didn't happen lieutenant colonel them in your deposition page 96 question was ok after the call on 725 do you have any discussions with mr morrison about your concerns answer
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after the call i heard the the exercise in the chain of command in expressing i immediately went to the senior and it's the legal counsel and share those concerns that would be mr eisenberg correct. i'm sorry my my lawyer was talking could you say that again please dr you went to mr eisenberg you've already said that so we can go on and you are not a jag officer you're not a lawyer and a page 153 of your testimony deposition and reference that meeting with mr eisenberg you said i was not making a legal judgment all i was doing is steering my concerns with my chain of command yet we've established that your direct report is to mr morrison so let's establish your role in your title in your deposition lieutenant colonel than men page 20201 and a colloquy with mr stewart you said i would say 1st of all i'm the director for ukraine i'm responsible for ukraine i'm the most knowledgeable and therefore than the
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national security council and the white house are you the only one of the entire universe of our government or otherwise that can advise the president on ukraine couldn't someone like miss williams also advise on ukraine it's in her pro folio. not typically would happen it would be for a prickly would be ambassador bolton so do other options no other people can advise on ukraine besides you. going on in your testimony said i understand all the nuances the context and so forth surrounding these issues i and my judgment went i expressed concerns within the chain of command which i think to me as a military officer is completely appropriate and i exercise that chain of command but senator levin many of deposition page to 59 you said i forwarded my concerns through the chain of command and the seniors then decide the action to take mr morris and your senior. he did know about it how can he decide in action to take
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that's what you said in mr morris deposition page 60 the question is at what point did you learn that lieutenant colonel didn't went to eisenberg you said it's about the 25th phone call he said yes in the course of your viewing for this proceeding viewing the open record so the question next question so eisenberg never came to you and relayed to the conversation no ellis never did either to the best of my religious recollection so mr morrison was skipped in your chain of command about your other concerns so mr morrison said he was the final clearing the thora to he said he saw your edits do you remember if all of the edits were incorporated and he said yes i accepted all of them at some page 6162 so he believes all your edits were excepted let me ask you were in your edits did you insist that the word demand be put into the transcription between the conversation of the 2 presidents i did not but you did say that in your opening statement today thank you no you'll be.
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the spear thank you mr chairman and thank you both for your testimony and your service colonel van then wasn't the case that mr eisenberg the attorney had said to you after the july 5th meeting that you should come to him if you have any other concerns after the july 10th meeting just members correct and it is not going outside the chain of command to speak to a lawyer within the institution is that correct no he is the senior between the 2 certainly all right our colleagues on the other side of the aisle have been complaining about other witnesses having only 2nd hand information but in both your cases you'll have firsthand information because you were on that july 25th phone call is that correct that's correct that is correct. now. colonel you and
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your comments today said i want to state that the vile character attacks on these distinguished and honorable public servants is reprehensible would you like to expand on that at all. i think they stand on their own i don't think so sir to expand on it so in both your situations since you have given depositions since those depositions have been made public have you seen your experience in your respective jobs changed or have you been treated any differently i have not know since their report on the july 25th. i stated i did notice i was i was being excluded from several meetings that would have been appropriate for my position so in some respects than there have been replies uls. i'm not sure if i could make their judgment i could say that it was
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out of the course of normal affairs to not have me participate in some of these if i think you. in preparation for the july 25th phone call it's standard for the national security council to provide talking points is that correct correct because the words of the president carry incredible weight is that not correct that is correct so it's important to ensure that everyone has carefully considered the implications of what the president might say to a foreign leader that is correct colonel binmen you are the national security council's director for ukraine did you participate in preparing the talking points for the president's call i did i prepared them so you prepared them they were then reviewed and edited by multiple senior officers the n.s.c. and the white house is that correct that is correct. did the talking points for the
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president contain any discussion of investigations into the 2016 election the bidens or charisma they did not are you aware of any written product from the national security council suggesting that investigations into the 2016 election the bidens or barisan are part of the official policy of the united states no i am not some of president trumps allies have suggested that the president requested these investigations for official policy reasons as part of some plan to root out corruption in ukraine. in your experience did the official policies of the united states include asking ukraine to specifically open investigations into the bidens and interference by ukraine in the 2016 election nothing that we prepared or had discussed up until that point included any of these elements would it ever be u.s. policy in your experience to ask a foreign leader to open
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a political investigation there are proper procedures in which to do that certainly the president is well within his right to do that. it is not something the n.s.c. certainly a director at the n.s.c. would do as a matter of fact we are prohibited from being involved in any transaction between department of justice and the farm are at a foreign. power to ensure that there is no perception of manipulation from the white house so it is not something that we will participate in this williams in your experience that the official policies of the united states include asking ukraine to open investigations into the bidens i have not seen any reference to those particular cases in our policy formulation process all right let me just say to you lieutenant colonel been men that in listening to your opening statement i had chills up and down my spine and i think most americans have recognize what an extraordinary hero you are to our country and i would say to your father. he
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did well i yield back stuart. it came miss williams lieutenant holden and thank both of you for being here today lieutenant probe and i see you're wearing your dress uniform 'd knowing that's not the uniform of the day you normally wear a suit to the white house i think it's a great reminder 'd of your military service to come from a military family these are my father's air force wings he was a pilot in world war 25 of his son served in the military so as one military family to another thank you and your brothers for your service your example here. very quickly i'm curious when ranking member noone has referred use mr binmen you quickly corrected him and wanted to be called lieutenant colonel did men do you always insist on civilians calling you by your rank. mr stewart represented stewart i'm in uniform wearing my military rank i just thought it was appropriate to stick with that well i'm sorry are you sure you know what i'll. do because i don't
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believe you did but the attacks that i've had in the press and twitter have kind of eliminated the fact that either marginalized me as a military officer or listen that i just i'm i'm just i'm just telling you the ranking member net net no disrespect to you i believe that i'd like to go back to your previous testimony earlier today much as much has been talked about as we've discussed between the president trump and present lissie and the word favor and it's being interpreted as a basis for impeachment and your interpretation of word favor and i'll paraphrase you in your feel free to correct me you said in a military culture which you and i are both on the earth when a superior august person or asks for a favor of this board and they will interpret that as a demand is is that a fair synopsis of what you previously stated. represented when a superior makes a request that's an order ok in short and you think your interpretation of
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a favor is a demand is based on your military experience and the military culture i think that is correct i think that is correct is president trump a member of the military he's not has he ever served in the military i'm not that i'm aware of is presently zelinsky a member of the military i'd answer leave so i don't know he's not it would be fair then to take a person who has never served in the military. and to take your revaluation of their words based on your military experience and your military culture and to attach that culture in that meaning of those words to someone who has never served . representative i made that judgment and i stick by that judgment i have to tell you i think it's nonsense look i was in the military i could distinguish between a favor and an order and a demand and so could my subordinates and i think president zelinsky did as well he
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never and initiated an investigation in fact he's been very clear he said i never felt any pressure at all so you interpreted the word favor but the 2 people who were speaking to each other did not interpret that as a demand it was your interpretation is that fair the context of this call consistent with the july 10th july 10th meeting with the reporting that was going on including the president's personal attorney made it clear that this was not simply a request well that's not dated at all it's not clear at all you say it makes it clear it's not clear at all and the 2 individuals who are talking to each other didn't interpret it that way i'd like to go on to discuss your reaction to the phone call and again your previous testimony and for brevity and for clarity i'm going to refer to your previous testimony page 155 you're trying to say welcome to follow on quoting you lieutenant colonel good men i did not know whether this was a crime or anything of that nature i thought it was wrong another like to keep on
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the word wrong here because we're going to come back to that in my mind did i consider this factor that could have been other implications yes but it wasn't the basis of i don't know lodging a criminal complaint or anything like that then you go on to talk about policy concerns and moral ethical judgments so your concerns regarding this phone call were not legal they were based on moral ethical and policy differences let me ask you then and you what you thought were wrong to use your word you said this was wrong not illegal but wrong. there are as i've stated previous sitting here a couple days ago there are dozens of corrupt nations in the world hundreds of corrupt government officials exactly one time did a vice president go to a nation and demand the specific firing of one individual and give a 6 hour time limit and withhold or threaten to hold a $1000000000.00 in aid if not it was the one individual who is investigating
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a company that was paying his son so i'll ask you was out also wrong i'd bet is not what i or say i frankly don't have any firsthand knowledge of that i was not a citizen a deal i've i've seen the video and i was not allowed to describe as a video everything i just said to you is in the video was that wrong as well congressman this is something i actually participated in i think i remember going to school can make it that i don't attitude at the time of genesis expired kind of and if you'd like to answer the question on a more well i frankly don't know any much more about that particular incident so i saw that snippet of the video but i know if i could make a judgement off. thank you this quickly thank mr chairman colonel it's one thing gas somebody a favor a light a go pick up my dry cleaning and it's another when the commander in chief or the most powerful army in the world ask an ally who is in a vulnerable position to do him
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a favor is it not yes let me go back to that military assistance if i could miss williams. again when did you 1st learn that the security assistance was being held up the nearly $400000000.00 that was referenced july 3rd and. were you aware of any additional or did you attend any additional means in which their military assistance being withheld was discussed i did i attended meetings on july 23rd and july 26th where the security assistance hold was discussed i believe it may have also been discussed on july 31st and. at that point did anyone provide a specific reason for the whole in those meetings the o.m.b. representative reported that the assistance was being held at the direction of the white house chief of staff and did they give reasons why beyond was being withheld
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by the white house chief of staff not specifically the reason given was that there was ongoing review whether the funding was still in line with administration priorities that anyone in any of those meetings or any other subsequent discussion you had discuss the legality of withholding that aid there were discussions i believe in the july 31st meeting and possibly prior as well in terms of defense and state department officials were looking into how they would handle a situation in which your marked funding from congress that was designated for ukraine would be resolved if the funding continued to be held as we approach the end of the fiscal year and from what you witnessed in anybody in the national security community support withholding assistance now
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colonel. again just for the record when did you 1st learn this security assistance was being with home on or about july 3rd. and what exactly had you learned from the state department i believe that prompted you to draft the notice on july 3rd i so we are about july 3rd i became aware of inquiries into. security assistance funding in general there are 2 typical pots state department and d. o. d. and i believe it was around that day that o.m.b. put a hold on congressional notification and you had any earlier indications that this might be the case prior to that they were there were some general inquiries on how the funds were being spent things of that nature nothing specific but no no hold 'd certainly we'll where anyone in the national security community.


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