Clinton Campaign Manager Podesta Under Investigation For Russian Ties?
Despite his attempts to downplay his working relationships with Russian-owned companies, John Podesta — former presidential campaign chairman for Hillary Clinton and former White House chief of staff for her husband’s administration — could soon be the subject of a Congressional investigation for Russian ties.
According to a report in The Daily Caller Tuesday, Rep. Louie Gohmert, (R-Texas) wants to initiate a congressional investigation into Podesta’s dealings with a state-run company founded by Russian President Vladimir Putin, called Rusnano.
As vice chair of the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee on crime, terrorism and homeland security, Gohmert told the DCNF:
“This certainly needs to be reviewed to see if there really is something nefarious going on.”
Podesta Gets A Paycheck From The Russians?
Podesta has reportedly been working with the Russian firm since 2011, taking seats on the boards and executive committees of its high-tech renewable energy enterprises.
Reports speculate that the Podesta-Russia connection could re-ignite interest in the Clinton family’s relationships with foreign figures, including Russia’s deputy prime minister in the 1990s, Chubais, who “owed his personal fortunes to Bill Clinton, who embraced him as a ‘reformer’ in former President Boris Yeltsin’s government. Clinton’s ally instead created a new generation of tycoons who today rule Russia.”
Thanks to a highly-detailed report from the nonprofit Government Accountability Institute (GAI) on Russian ties to Podesta and the Clintons and an ongoing federal lawsuit, Neas Ltd, v. Rusnano, it appears as though Podesta and others “may have unwittingly assisted Rusnano in a scheme hatched to move billions of weak rubles into valuable U.S. dollars by parking them as ‘investments’ in high-tech companies in Boston and in Silicon Valley.”
Rusnano is apparently leading the Russian investment move into the United States, according to the lawsuit.
Boston-area high-tech firms were issued an “extraordinary warning” about Russian investors back in 2014, according to special agent Lucia Ziobro of the FBI’s Boston field office.
“The FBI believes the true motives of the Russian partners, who are often funded by their government, is to gain access to classified, sensitive and emerging technology from the companies.”
Rusnano was a special company formed by decree at the direction of Putin. A small group of Putin cronies called the “Kooperative Ozero” masterminded the takeover of big swaths of the Russian economy.
The Ozero group are eight men — including Putin — who owned expensive dachas on a lake outside of St. Petersburg. They now run state-owned banks, the news media and oil and gas companies.
“This group Ozero turned to occupy all the ruling positions in the country after Putin came to power,” Ponomarev told TheDCNF. He said the group represented “former KGB, organized crime and their associates.”
David Satter, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute and former Wall Street Journal reporter who covered Russia, called Chubais as “a very shady figure.”
“Chubais was in charge of the whole privatization process during the 1990’s under Yeltsin which was notoriously corrupt,” he told TheDCNF. “Billions of dollars in property changed hands under conditions that were unethical, illegal, criminal. He was in charge of that whole process,” he said.
The DCNF contacted but received no replies from Joule Unlimited, Rusnano USA or Podesta.