Op-Ed: Zelenskyy and Trump Always Agreed on a Very Powerful Point


During the Obama era, corruption in Ukraine had become an issue of national (and even international) concern. So much so, in fact, that the people of Ukraine had finally had enough.

In May 2019, they elected Volodymyr Zelenskyy, an anti-corruption figure and political outsider, as president by a landslide margin of 73.2 percent, with a similar legislative snap victory immediately following.

Zelenskyy was a Jewish comedian and actor who, ironically, became famous by starring as the fictitious president of Ukraine in a popular television series. As promised during his campaign, he immediately got to work to clean up Ukraine and eradicate the widespread corruption. He sought to “restart the justice system,” remove legal immunity for parliament members and break up the oligarchs.

President Donald J. Trump noticed. Trump reached out to Zelenskyy to congratulate him on his party’s victories and discuss the efforts to combat corruption in what the 45th American president described as a “perfect call.” Zelenskyy shared how much he had learned from Trump and how he too was now “trying to work hard … to ‘drain the swamp’ here in our country [of Ukraine].”

Trump praised the new Ukrainian president’s ambitions and mentioned the corruption of the Biden family and the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch. He encouraged Zelenskyy to reopen an investigation that had been shut down by then-Vice President Joe Biden. (Biden himself bragged shamelessly that he had had the Ukrainian prosecutor fired by threatening to withhold billions in aid money).

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Zelenskyy heartily agreed, emphasizing that he sought to “administer justice.” He also complained about Yovanovitch’s attitude toward him, describing her as an ally and admirer of former President Barack Obama.

Upon hearing that the prosecution of members of the Biden family and their business associates might be reinstated during the Trump administration, the Democratic political machine in America went into overdrive to stop both Trump and Zelenskyy. Not long after the phone call, Democrats voted to impeach Trump for the alleged crime and corruption of exposing and prosecuting crime and corruption.

But is that where the story ends? Is it a mere coincidence that about a year after Trump exited the White House and with Zelenskyy still in office, Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine with the goal of a regime change?

What did Biden initially say about Putin’s assault on Ukraine? He indicated that a “minor incursion” (i.e. a small invasion) could bring a soft response from the U.S.

Putin gleefully pounced after getting the partial green light from Biden, and now Russian troops have poured across the border in a vicious attack against Ukraine’s civilian population and its vital infrastructure. Biden, in turn, offered to evacuate the Ukrainian president, an action ostensibly for Zelenskyy’s safety that no doubt would have also undermined his power and loosened his grip on the government.

As the Durham investigation into Hillary Clinton’s nefarious ties to Russia plods along, is it really a surprise that the Democratic establishment that impeached Trump for encouraging Zelenskyy to investigate illegal activity has all but abandoned our strategic ally in its hour of greatest need? Is it a surprise that Biden, the very same political figure who put Ukraine’s defense in jeopardy by threatening to cut vital aid to ensure that his son and his business buddies were not prosecuted for corruption, would now once again endanger Ukraine?

Is it a coincidence that that endangerment is at the expense of Zelenskyy, who — “coincidentally” — had promised Trump that he would take action against bad actors in Ukraine, including the Biden family and other American elites?

While we continue to speculate on the likelihood of these “coincidences,” Trump himself has chimed in on the war in Ukraine, saying, “They laid down the welcome mat and gave Russia the opening, now Putin may be getting everything he wanted, with Ukraine and the rest of the world suffering the consequences. It’s terrible, but this is what you get with Biden, the Democrats, and RINO warmongers!”

As we watch gut-wrenching videos of the Putin-led devastation in Ukraine while Zelenskyy dons a military uniform and leads the defense of his nation, it’s hard to disagree with Trump. And it’s difficult to ignore the ramifications of the ongoing “coincidental” efforts to undermine Trump and Zelenskyy.

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Ben Kerido is an American-Israeli special forces operator and former U.S. Department of Defense contractor focusing on psychological warfare training and now serving in the Israel Defense Force reserves. He and his wife Sarai live in Jerusalem and are writers for Intrepid Tower Publishing and hosts of the "From Israel with Love" podcast. They are also the authors of five books, including "The American Holocaust: Early Tomorrow Morning," an Orwell-style thriller and satirical parody of the American and Middle Eastern political and military arenas.