Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the National Security Council’s top Ukraine expert, plans to tell House impeachment investigators on Tuesday that he was so troubled by President Donald Trump’s July phone call with Ukraine’s President that he reported his concerns to a superior, according to a copy of his opening statement obtained by CNN.
Vindman will also tell lawmakers that he felt Trump’s efforts to press Ukraine for investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son undermined American national security.
Read the statement below:
Opening Statement of Lieutenant Colonel Alexander S. Vindman
Before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and the House Committee on Oversight and Reform
October 29, 2019
Mr. Chairman and Ranking Member, thank you for the opportunity to address the Committees concerning the activities relating to Ukraine and my role in the events under investigation.
I have dedicated my entire professional life to the United States of America. For more than two decades, it has been my honor to serve as an officer in the United States Army. As an infantry officer, I served multiple overseas tours, including South Korea and Germany, and a deployment to Iraq for combat operations. In Iraq, I was wounded in an IED attack and awarded a Purple Heart.
Since 2008, I have been a Foreign Area Officer specializing in Eurasia. In this role, I have served in the United States’ embassies in Kiev, Ukraine and Moscow, Russia. In Washington, D.C., I was a politico-military affairs officer for Russia for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs where I authored the principle strategy for managing competition with Russia. In July 2018, I was asked to serve at the National Security Council.
The privilege of serving my country is not only rooted in my military service, but also in my personal history. I sit here, as a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army, an immigrant. My family fled the Soviet Union when I was three and a half years old. Upon arriving in New York City in 1979, my father worked multiple jobs to support us, all the while learning English at night. He stressed to us the importance of fully integrating into our adopted country. For many years, life was quite difficult. In spite of our challenging beginnings, my family worked to build its own American dream. I have a deep appreciation for American values and ideals and the power of freedom. I am a patriot, and it is my sacred duty and honor to advance and defend OUR country, irrespective of party or politics.