Former Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton recently appeared in an interview on C-SPAN and said the latest attention given to the Russian uranium deals under her watch as Secretary of State is “baloney,” and that she is merely a target of President Donald Trump and his associates.
“I would say it’s the same baloney they’ve been peddling for years, and there’s no credible evidence by anyone. In fact, it’s been debunked repeatedly and will continue to be debunked,” she told C-SPAN, The Hill reported Monday.
The Hill had exclusively reported last week that the FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) knew about a Russian bribery scheme to control more U.S. uranium before the deal was even finalized.
And, The Hill’s report revealed that Russian nuclear industry officials bribed and funneled money to key players in the United States – including the Clinton Foundation – in order to push two uranium deals through under the Obama Administration, all reportedly while there was an ongoing investigation about the scheme within the U.S. Department of Justice and FBI. The Obama Administration and the Clintons have denied any knowledge of the bribes
These deals were approved by the U.S. State Department, where Hillary Clinton then served as Secretary of State, and they gave Russia significant control over a lot of American uranium. Uranium can yield a great deal of energy, and it generates heat in nuclear power reactors and produces the easily-split material for nuclear weapons.
While the U.S. DOJ investigated the case for four years, the Obama Administration continued to push through two key deals that would greatly benefit Russian President Vladimir Putin. The Hill had the exclusive scoop about this investigation and claims the administration knew about it while the deals were taking place – in short, before the deal was sealed.
“The Obama administration and the Clintons defended their actions at the time, insisting there was no evidence that any Russians or donors engaged in wrongdoing and there was no national security reason for any member of the committee [on Foreign Investment] to oppose the Uranium One deal,” The Hill had reported.
Vadim Mikerin was the main Russian operative in the U.S., and The Hill reported that he “engaged in wrongdoing starting in 2009,” according to FBI, Energy Department and court documents.
Since that report, there have been efforts by congressional committees to investigate the case and speak to Mikerin, who is under a gag order.
“I think the real story is how nervous they are about these continuing investigations,” Hillary Clinton told C-SPAN.
“But here is what they are doing, and I have to give them credit,” she continued, The Hill reported. “[President] Trump and his allies, including Fox News, are really experts at distraction and diversion. So the closer the investigation about real Russian ties between Trump associates and real Russians, as we heard [Attorney General] Jeff Sessions finally admit to in his testimony the other day, the more they want to just throw mud on the wall.”
Clinton also said: “I’m their favorite target. Me and President Obama, we are the ones they like to put in the crosshairs,” The Hill reported.
The first uranium deal was approved in Oct. 2010. The State Department and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. approved the partial sale of Canadian mining company Uranium One to Russia by way of nuclear company Rosatom, which then gave Moscow control of more than 20 percent of the U.S. uranium supply, The Hill reported.
And then in 2011, the Obama Administration approved Rosatom’s Tenex subsidiary to sell commercial uranium to U.S. power plants in partnership with the U.S. Enrichment Corp, where Tenex previously had only been permitted to sell reprocessed uranium from dismantled nuclear weapons.
The Hill reported that the FBI had gathered evidence that Russian officials were involved in bribery before the first deal was even approved in 2010; the Hill cited government documents and interviews.
“Federal agents used a confidential U.S. witness working inside the Russian nuclear industry to gather extensive financial records, make secret recordings and intercept emails as early as 2009 that showed Moscow had compromised an American uranium trucking firm with bribes and kickbacks in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FBI and court documents show,” The Hill reported.
“They also obtained an eyewitness account — backed by documents — indicating Russian nuclear officials had routed millions of dollars to the U.S. designed to benefit former President Bill Clinton’s charitable foundation during the time Secretary of State Hillary Clinton served on a government body that provided a favorable decision to Moscow, sources told The Hill,” it reported.