June - 2010

June 28, 2010 – Emails show Clinton ties to Russian oligarch under investigation

Viktor Vekselberg (Credit: Dmitry Lovetsky/The Associated Press)

“New emails show Clinton Foundation staff pushed Hillary Clinton’s State Department to approve a meeting between Bill Clinton and a powerful Russian oligarch as her agency lined up investors for a project under his purview.

The Clintons’ relationship with Viktor Vekselberg, the billionaire whose name appears in the documents, has taken on new significance amid an expanding criminal investigation into his company. Last week, authorities raided the offices of Vekselberg’s firm, Renova Group, following allegations of bribery from several of Renova’s subsidiaries.

[…] “In April of that year, Bill Clinton’s staff had submitted to the State Department ethics office a request for the former president to deliver a paid speech in Moscow on June 28, 2010, an engagement that necessitated the trip to Russia that Desai described.

Renaissance Capital, a Russian investment bank, paid Bill Clinton $500,000 for that speech, according to his wife’s financial disclosures from 2010. The State Department had given its approval for the trip just two days after Bill Clinton’s office filed its request.

The former president’s travel to Russia for the speech and potential meetings with Vekselberg and others came as Hillary Clinton’s State Department labored to drum up interest in a technology-sharing project, led by Vekselberg, called Skolkovo.

Hailed as the Russian version of Silicon Valley, Skolkovo was conceived during President Obama’s “Russia Reset” as a way to attract investors to Moscow-based technology start-ups.

Hillary Clinton, responsible for the mechanics of the Russia Reset, was tasked with finding companies to invest in and work with Skolkovo in the early months of her tenure.

Four days after Hillary Clinton met with then-Russian President Dmitri Medvedev in March 2010, Medvedev announced that Vekselberg would head up the Skolkovo project.

Just one day after Hillary Clinton had a private phone call with John Chambers, CEO of Cisco, Medvedev met with Cisco executives in California. That same day, Vekselberg announced that Cisco and Boeing would invest in Skolkovo.

Both Cisco and Boeing are major Clinton Foundation donors. Cisco paid Bill Clinton $256,000 for a speech in Oct. 2010, just three months after Vekselberg’s announcement that the firm would invest $1 billion in Skolkovo.

As Peter Schweizer, author of “Clinton Cash,” noted in his report on the technology project, 17 of the 28 companies that were ultimately listed as “key partners” in Skolkovo were also Clinton Foundation donors.” (Read more: Washington Examiner, 9/12/2016)

June 9, 2010: Giustra and the Clintons meet the Colombian President; Giustra gets big contracts in Colombia and Giustra makes big donations to the Clinton Foundation

Clinton shakes hands with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe at a press conference in Bogota, Colombia, on June 9, 2010. (Credit: Eitan Abramovich / Agence France Presse)

“While running for president in 2008, both Clinton and Senator Barack Obama (D) publicly opposed a US trade deal with Colombia, the United States–U., due to human rights violations there.

In June 2010, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, her husband former President Bill Clinton, and Canadian mining financier Frank Giustra meet with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe in Colombia. Giustra has developed business ties worth hundreds of millions of dollars in Colombia after repeated meetings with Uribe and Bill Clinton. Giustra also has donated tens of millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation. Uribe has been widely criticized for human rights abuses.

Representative Jim McGovern (D) warns Hillary in a private email that “while in Colombia, the most important thing the Secretary can do is to avoid effusive praise for President Alvaro Uribe.” But Hillary ignores this warning. After the dinner, she gives a public speech in which she praises Uribe as an “essential partner to the United States” whose “commitment to building strong democratic institutions here in Colombia” would “leave a legacy of great progress that will be viewed in historic terms.”

She also publicly supports the US trade deal, a deal which would greatly benefit Giustra and other US investors in Colombia. In 2011, workers for the Giustra-owned Pacific Rubiales company in Colombia go on strike. There are allegations they are forced to live and work in “concentration camp-like” conditions. However, the Colombian military uses force and breaks the strike. By this time, Giustra has donated $130 million to the Clinton Foundation.

Clinton’s State Department certifies that Colombia is “meeting statutory criteria related to human rights,” despite widespread evidence to the contrary, and Clinton and now President Obama decide to support the trade deal they had opposed. Later in 2011, the trade deal passes Congress and becomes law. This is followed by more donations from both Giustra and Pacific Rubiales to the Clinton Foundation.” (Read more: Thompson Timeline), (The Hill, 4/9/2015) (The New York Review of Books,1/30/2016)

June 2010 – 2013: Secret donations flow to Clinton Foundation amid Uranium One deal

Ian Telfer (Credit: Galit Rodan/Bloomberg News/Getty Images

“At the heart of the tale are several men, leaders of the Canadian mining industry, who have been major donors to the charitable endeavors of former President Bill Clinton and his family. Members of that group built, financed and eventually sold off to the Russians a company that would become known as Uranium One.

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.” (Read more: New York Times, 4/23/2015),(Thompson Timeline)