Top Ukraine expert describes his shock at hearing phone call

Updated: November 19, 2019 05:02 PM
Created: November 19, 2019 10:49 AM

(NBC News) Two witnesses who were on the July 25th phone call with President Trump and Ukraine's President Zelenskiy took center stage at impeachment hearings Tuesday.

Lt. Colonel Alexander Vindman, a top expert on Ukraine with the National Security Council and Jennifer Williams, an aide to Vice President Mike Pence, testified publicly for the first time.


Vindman, a decorated combat veteran, says he was so concerned the president made military aid to Ukraine contingent on that country investigating Joe Biden, he reported his concerns to the National Security Council'S top lawyer.

"My intent was to raise these concerns because they had significant national security concerns for our country," Lt. Colonel Vindman said.

Williams said she was also alarmed.

"I found the July 25th unusual because, and in contrast, it involved discussion of what appeared to be a domestic political matter," she said.

Their testimony came as President Trump dismissed the hearing as a kangaroo court.

"What's going one is a disgrace and it is an embarrassment to our nation," Mr. Trump said.

The president has previously labeled both witnesses "Never Trumpers," without evidence.

House Republicans, meanwhile, sought to discredit Lt. Colonel Vindman, casting doubt on his judgment and trustworthiness, and pressured him to identify an intelligence official he spoke to about the July call.  Democrats criticized that line of questioning as another attempt to unveil the whistleblower who first raised concerned over the call. 

Read more:

(Copyright 2019 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Comment on Facebook
Rensselaer Co. lawmakers defeat resolution to recognize Black Lives Matter movement

First COVID-19 vaccine tested in US poised for final testing

Trump signs bill, order rebuking China, and slams Biden

Man charged with arson for Gloversville mill fire

Gov. Cuomo adds 4 new states to travel advisory