Escalating the new Cold War with Russia
Biden’s Unprincipled Stands Involving Covert
Operations, Blackmail, Corruption, Nepotism and
By Jeremy Kuzmarov
The long suppressed facts involving
Biden and the Ukraine are clear, documented, and
undisputed, even though you will never read them
in The New York Times.
Even a broken clock is right
twice a day. And even a liar like Donald Trump can
sometimes tell the truth. During the 2020 election
campaign, Trump accused Biden of corruption with
regard to secret deals involving the Ukraine and
China, in which the Vice President venally leveraged
the power of his office and title to enrich himself
and his son in clear violation of the law.
In that charge, Trump was absolutely right. But
he did not know the half of it. Joe Biden’s history
of deceit and corruption did not begin with the 2020
election campaign, nor is it limited to his dealings
with the Ukraine and China, although they are a good
place to start unraveling the myth of Joe Biden as
secular saint, whose incorruptible honesty and
nobility of character have been so vigorously
propagated by corporate media and internalized even
by large segments of the left.
For example, let us look at “Ukrainegate” and Joe
Biden’s part in it.
On Eastern Sunday, 2014, Joe Biden boarded Air
Force 2 bound for Kyiv. Two months earlier, Ukraine
had been roiled by protests centered in Maidan
Square which resulted in the toppling of pro-Russian
President Viktor Yanukovych in a coup d’état. Biden
had known Yanukovych well, speaking to him on the
phone nine times during the crisis. The official
purpose of Biden’s trip, according to journalist
Evan Osnos, was to reassure Ukraine’s fragile new
government and “deter Vladimir Putin from moving
deeper into Ukrainian territory.”
Once in Kyiv, Biden met with Vitali Klitschko, a
6’7” former heavyweight boxing champion known as Dr.
Iron Fist before he entered politics, who was
supported by the State Department, and Petro
Poroshenko, the future president who had made his
fortune in the candy business.
Biden promised in the meeting a small aid
package—$58 million in election help, energy
expertise and nonlethal security equipment including
radios for border patrol. More importantly, Biden
wanted to convey a message for the new leaders in
Kyiv—namely that regaining legitimacy would require
change beyond just resisting Russian interference.
Addressing parliament, Biden said that “you have to
fight the cancer of corruption that is endemic in
your system right now.”
Biden’s words came to ring hollow over
time—certainly in the eyes of many Ukrainians.
A month after Biden’s speech, his youngest son,
Hunter, was appointed to the Board of Directors of
and head of legal affairs for Burisma, an oil and
gas company owned by former ecology minister Mykola
Zlochevsky, who was then under investigation for
money laundering and tax fraud.
Hunter was paid $83,000 per month for five years
(at least $3.6 million in total), even though he had
no previous experience in Ukraine or in the oil and
gas business, and
never visited Ukraine for company business
during his time on the board.
He had served on the board of Amtrak, the train
his father famously rode to work every day, became
senior vice president of MBNA, a bank that was a top
contributor to Joe Biden’s Senate campaigns, and was
appointed to the
board of the National Democratic Institute,
which pushed for regime change in Ukraine before the
Maidan Square protests.
In 2010, Lutsenko was convicted and sent to
prison for four years for
embezzlement and abuse of authority while
serving as Minister of the Interior. The abuse
included appointment of his personal driver as an
intelligence officer, illegal wiretapping and use of
state resources for his private entertainment and a
fancy holiday in the Seychelles with his wife.
Less than a week later, Biden returned to Ukraine
for his last visit as Vice President and praised the
progress in the country since the Maidan protest,
the anti-corruption prosecutor for special
Viktor Shokin provided an interview to ABC
News—which never aired—in which he stated that he
had been given
hints to stop the investigation into Zlochevsky
and Burisma, which proved to be his undoing.
Shokin noted that he had plans to
interrogate Hunter Biden and Devon Archer, a
financial adviser to John Kerry later convicted of
defrauding the Oglala Sioux tribe, who was also
appointed to Burisma’s board, and said that, if
Biden had evidence of his corruption that justified
his firing, he would have presented it—which he did
Biden claimed that he had “never spoken to my son
about his overseas business dealings.”
However, a trove of documents recovered from
Hunter’s laptop computer—which Hunter never picked
up from a repair shop in Delaware—pointed to a
meeting between Joe Biden and Vadym Pozharskiy,
an adviser to the board of Burisma in April 2017 in
Washington D.C., which Hunter had set up.
In one email, Pozharskiy wrote:
No Ordinary Company
Burisma Holdings was no ordinary company but
central to larger geopolitical intrigues playing out
in the new Cold War.
Founded in 2002 and incorporated in Cyprus in
2006, Burisma benefited from concessions granted to
Zlochevsky when he served as Minister of Ecology, a
position that was responsible for giving out
licenses for oil and gas extraction.
Journalist John Helmer found strong
circumstantial evidence that the central shareholder
of Burisma was not Zlochevsky, but
Ihor Kolomoisky, Ukraine’s most powerful
oligarch who kept a live shark in a huge tank in his
office to intimidate visitors.
The Ukrainian media had reported that Shokin’s
predecessor as Prosecutor General, Vitaly Yarema,
was ousted on February 11, 2015 because he had
reopened the Burisma investigation aiming not at
Zlochevsky, but Kolomoisky, who had him fired.
In considering all this, Biden’s corrupt actions
related to Burisma and his son appear designed to
have advanced the proxy war against the Russians in
A telling sign of Burisma’s
fronting for a CIA black operation was its
Cofer Black to its board in February 2017.
Black was a top CIA official whose experience
running clandestine wars went back to the Reagan
administration’s covert action program in Angola,
where the CIA armed anticommunist warlord Jonas
From 2005 to 2008, Black served as vice chairman
of Blackwater. He had also run the CIA’s anti-bin
Laden unit before forming his own private
Total Intelligence Solutions.
Neither Kennedy nor Dulles, however, involved
their own family members in extortion schemes.
Biden: A Bridge Between Cold War I and
Cold War II
Biden’s support for a proxy war against Russia is
not surprising given his background.
As CAM previously reported, Biden was mentored
as a “twenty-nine-year-old kid” in the Senate in the
early 1970s by W. Averell Harriman, one of the
fathers of the Cold War.
Harriman was the son of railroad tycoon E. H.
Harriman and founding partner of the top Wall Street
investment firm, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.,
which invested in
lucrative mining ventures in the Soviet Union
that were abrogated by communist nationalization
The loss of profit helped fuel Harriman’s
lifelong hatred for Soviet Russia.
He pressed for anti-Soviet policies as U.S.
ambassador to the USSR from 1943 to 1946 and
as Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and
Pacific Affairs and Undersecretary of State for
Political Affairs in the early 1960s when he
supported an escalation of the Vietnam War.
Harriman also directed the Marshall Plan—an economic
aid program targeting Western Europe that was
designed to isolate the Soviet Union, among other
Joe Biden followed his mentor by working to
advance U.S. foreign policy in the Cold War.
Biden supported the
SALT II arms control treaty signed by Jimmy
Carter and Leonid Brezhnev in June 1979, and visited
Moscow in 1988 as part of a delegation that aimed to
ratify the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty
(INF), which set limits on mid-range nuclear
Biden’s attitude toward Russia became more
hostile by the time of Cold War II.
In the 1990s, as a member of the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee, Biden championed the expansion
of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)
into Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, a
policy that angered the Russians who had been
promised in 1991 that NATO would not be expanded
eastward toward its border.
George F. Kennan, the father of the Cold War
containment doctrine who had worked under Averell
Harriman when he was ambassador to the Soviet Union,
warned that NATO expansion would amount to a
“strategic blunder of epic proportions” and the
“most fateful error of American policy in the entire
post-Cold War era.”
The reason is that it would “inflame the
nationalistic, anti-Western and militaristic
tendencies in Russian opinion,” “restore the
atmosphere of the cold war to East-West relations”
and “impel Russian foreign policy in a direction
decidedly not to our liking”—which is exactly what
When he visited Ukraine as Vice President in
2009, Biden said that he was “still inspired, as
many Americans are by what happened here less than
five years ago,
the sea of orange that flooded independence square,
the hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians demanding
peacefully that their votes be counted and that
their voices be heard is something that will not be
forgotten for a long, long time.”
Russia’s perspective has been validated by
historian Mark Tauger, whose research determined
that Ukraine’s famine had
environmental causes, which Soviet policies
aimed to overcome.
Biden’s Cold War outlook was apparent in his
sponsorship of the
Silk Road Strategy Act of 1999 and 2006, which
aimed to expand U.S. investments and influence in
the oil-rich countries of Central Asia in order to
undercut Russian power.
On the eve of the Russia-Georgia war, Biden
sponsored a resolution condemning Russia for
allegedly making provocative statements toward
Georgia and denouncing any efforts by Russia to
assert greater influence over the breakaway
provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, which Biden
claimed was a “thinly
veiled effort at annexation.”
Under this new system, major social gains
resulting from state-funded education, health care
and housing in the Soviet-era were
reversed, and state industries were sold off to
Yeltsin’s cronies for a fraction of their worth
ill-conceived privatization scheme.
In the January/February 2018 issue of Foreign
Affairs, Biden co-authored an article with his
aide Michael Carpenter, “How
to Stand Up to the Kremlin” which accused Putin
of “brazenly assaulting the foundations of Western
democracy around the world through coordinated
attacks across many domains—military, political,
These charges were part of a vendetta against
Putin who had reasserted Russian control over its
economy and begun to reverse the disastrous policies
advocated by Biden and other Clintonites in the
Biden and Carpenter called for the “forward
deployment of NATO troops and military capabilities
to Eastern Europe to deter and if necessary defeat a
Russian attack [against one of the alliance’s member
states,]” heightened efforts to “root out
disinformation, especially on social media,” and the
imposition of “greater costs on Russia for its
violations of international law and other countries’
sovereignty”—including through tougher sanctions,
which were already very harsh.
Biden followed up his Foreign Affairs
piece by attacking Donald Trump during the 2020
election campaign for his alleged “subservience”
to Putin and for being
This even though Trump had expanded sanctions on
Russia and pulled out of the INF treaty which Biden
had supported in the late 1980s.
Obama’s Point-Person on Ukraine
During his vice presidency, Biden was appointed
as the Obama administration’s point person on
Ukraine and traveled there a
record six times.
Biden’s foreign policy adviser Michael Carpenter
stated that “Ukraine was one of the top three
foreign policy issues we were concentrating on.
Biden was front and center.”
During Biden’s December 2015 visit where he
engaged in blackmail, Biden gave a
stirring speech to the Ukrainian parliament in
which he said that the world had been “transfixed”
by the “thousands of brave Ukrainians storming the
Maidan, demanding a revolution of dignity” and then
was “horrified” when the peaceful patriots were met
Biden’s assessment—representing the official U.S.
government view—left out the fact that many of the
Maidan square protesters were admirers of Stephen
Bandera, a Nazi collaborator in World War II, and
had fascist sympathies.
A percentage of the “heavenly hundred” were also
killed by snipers who were insurgents participating
in black-flag operations that were designed to
discredit Yanukovych’s security forces.
Biden left out further that 48 Yanukovych
supporters were killed after far-right activists
forced them into a trade union building in Odessa
and then burned it down.
Yanukovych for his part was willing to accept a
deal that would have restored the 2005 constitution
and power-sharing arrangement and set up elections
The Maidan protesters rejected the compromise,
although they did not amass enough signatures for
impeachment, thus necessitating the overthrow of
Yanukovych through a coup.
Biden in his December 2015 speech claimed that
Russia had started the war in Eastern Ukraine by
occupying sovereign Ukrainian territory and that the
U.S. “does not, will not, never will recognize
Russia’s attempt to annex Crimea.”
In reality, the war in the East started when the
post-Maidan government refused to recognize the
Eastern provinces vote to secede from the Ukraine.
The refusal to recognize Crimea was similarly a
political decision stemming from America’s vendetta
against the Putin government which was more
nationalistic than its predecessor.
Crimeans voted overwhelmingly to rejoin Russia,
which remembered Yuschenko’s promise to close down
its naval facility at Sevastapol by 2017.
Biden’s home town of Scranton has a large
Ukrainian-American community and Biden’s top
assistant, Michael Carpenter, was a member of the
U.S.-Ukraine Foundation’s Friends of the Ukraine
Network (FOUN), a lobby group supported by
retired military officers and Pentagon officials
which has pushed for aggressive measures directed
During the 2020 presidential campaign, Biden
benefited from the support of the mainstream and
even progressive media, which failed to properly
report on his corrupt dealings in Ukraine and
accepted Biden’s claim that any reports of
were Russian disinformation.
The few journalists who tried to discuss the
story were vilified, including Glen Greenwald, who
resigned from The Intercept because
it refused to publish his piece on the topic.
When Bernie Sanders loyalists criticize Biden’s
foreign policy, they focus on Iraq and Israel, but
The reason for all this is simple: Unlike during
the first Cold War, when there was at least some
space for reasonable debate, the political climate
has become increasingly authoritarian and
Stopping the Ukraine War or détente with Russia
is not a fashionable cause on the left because of
its current fixation with identity politics and
race; the victims of the Ukraine war are white.
Additionally, the U.S. left has been so intent on
destroying Donald Trump that they fell into line
with the rhetoric of the new Cold War since Trump
was accused of being a Russian agent.
The main beneficiary of all this has been Biden
who rivals Donald Trump and others, like Bill
Clinton and Richard Nixon, as one of the most
corrupt and unprincipled men to have been elected
U.S. President in the modern era.
Jeremy Kuzmarov is Managing Editor of CovertAction Magazine and author
of four books on U.S. foreign policy,
including Obama’s Unending Wars
(Clarity Press, 2019) and The
Russians Are Coming, Again, with
John Marciano (Monthly Review Press, 2018).
CovertAction Quarterly and
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to CovertAction, you are
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of the Magazine.
 Evan Osnos, Joe Biden: The Life, the
Run, and What Matters Now (New York: Scribner,
 Lutsenko owned shares in an underground
casino network which facilitated illegal gambling.
 Shokin was denied a visa even to travel to
the U.S. where his daughter and grandson lived.
 The two primary funders of the Javelin
anti-tank missiles, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon,
also financed the Atlantic Council.
 Cyprus was a convenient location for money
 Another Burisma board member, former Polish
Alexander Kwasniewski, was in the pay of
right-wing Ukrainian oligarch Viktor Pinchuk who
donated $13 million to the Clinton Foundation.
Hillary Clinton, as Secretary of State, was an
aggressive sponsor of the Maidan coup and dirty war
in Eastern Ukraine and wanted to take the war into
 See Rudy Abramson, Spanning the Century:
The Life of W. Averell Harriman, 1891-1986 (New
York: William Morrow, 1992).
 George F. Kennan, “A Fateful Error,” The
New York Times, February 5, 1997.
 See Garry Leech, Crude interventions:
The US, Oil and the New World (Dis)Order
(London: Zed Books, 2006), 55, 56.
 See Stewart Parker, The Last Soviet
Republic: Alexander Lukashenko’s Belarus
(London: Trafford, 2007).
 During the 2020 election, Biden criticized
Donald Trump for not speaking out about repression
of democratic protests that year in Belarus, a
country he said is being
run by a “dictator.”
 Poroshenko largely acquiesced to these
measures, passing a
pension “reform” bill, which cut back on early
retirements and increased the number of years
workers must contribute to the pension system in
order to qualify, but stopped short of raising the
retirement age or cutting payments.
 Branko Marcetic’s informed critique of
Biden, Yesterday’s Man (London: Verso,
2020) does not discuss Biden’s dealings in Ukraine
and support for the war there. Marcetic further
claims that the charges that Biden blackmailed the
Ukrainian government into firing Shokin are
“unproven,” when in fact Biden bragged about
doing so in a January 2018 speech before the Council
on Foreign Relations.
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