What's that thing Daniel Drezner always tweets about how he'll believe Trump has grown into the presidency when Trump's own advisers stop treating him like a whiny fucking dumb baby? Looks like another one is in order, because Natasha Bertrand has new reporting from Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman's testimony, and it turns out that Vindman, the actual top Ukraine guy at the National Security Council, was excluded from a key opportunity to brief Trump on Ukraine, because Trump was really and truly under the impression that a whole 'nother guy, Devin Nunes's dumb idiot conspiracy theory guy Kash Patel, was the top NSC Ukraine expert. Vindman was excluded so as not to confuse President Good Brain.

Briefly recall: Patel used to be Fucking Devin's top guy, and wrote Fucking Devin's stupidass "RELEASE THE MEMO!" back when he worked for Fucking Devin at House Intel. He was awarded the coveted Order on Ineptitude by a federal judge in Houston in 2016, when he worked for the Justice Department. Somehow he failed upward to the NSC, where he's been bringing orders upon orders of ineptitude to Trump's foreign policy. And Trump reportedly considers Patel one of his TOP YOOKRAIN EXPURTS, even referring to Patel as the "Ukraine director" at NSC, which freaked out Fiona Hill, former Senior Director for European and Russian Affairs.

Again: Patel was not the "Ukraine director." Vindman is the Ukraine director. But Patel had some VERY IMPORTANT documents about Ukraine that he had colored with permanent markers and glitter to show Trump, so that counts obviously! What kind of documents? Fuck if we know, but we bet they featured a lot of "Ukraine facts."

So picking up with Natasha Bertrand's scoop from Vindman's testimony, we learn that VINDMAN was not allowed to debrief TRUMP after the American delegation returned from its trip to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy's inauguration in May, because TRUMP thought KASH PATEL was the official White House Director Of Ukraine-ing, not VINDMAN, even though VINDMAN was ACTUALLY THAT, and White House officials didn't want to HURT THE PRESIDENT'S BRAIN WITH NEW INFORMATION.

The decorated Army officer who testified to House investigators on Tuesday told lawmakers that a close associate of Republican Rep. Devin Nunes "misrepresented" himself to President Donald Trump in an effort to involve himself further in Ukraine policy, according to two people familiar with his closed-door deposition. [...]

Vindman was instructed "at the last second" not to attend the debriefing, he told lawmakers, because Trump's advisers were worried it might confuse the president—Trump believed at the time that Kashyap Patel, a longtime Nunes staffer who joined the White House in February and had no discernable Ukraine experience or expertise, was actually the NSC's top Ukraine expert instead of Vindman.

Vindman testified that he was told this directly by his boss at the time, NSC senior director for European and Russian affairs Fiona Hill.

Hill told Vindman that she and national security adviser John Bolton thought it best to exclude Vindman from the debriefing to avoid "an uncomfortable situation," he said.

So! This fucking moron Kash Patel, who maybe couldn't find Ukraine on a map, who came from Devin Nunes's MENSA Shop And Institute For The Study Of Erotic Mooing (ALLEGEDLY!), found his way into the NSC and proceed to trick President Dumbass into thinking he was the real expert of Ukraine.

Because of this, Fiona Hill told Alexander Vindman, the real Ukraine expert, that he should not go to the debriefing because she and other Trump advisers including John Bolton were worried Trump might get a confuse, and you wouldn't like Trump when he has a confuse!

You ready with that tweet, Daniel Drezner?

Vindman's exclusion sheds even more light on the unusual steps top NSC officials were taking as early as May to avoid angering or annoying Trump on Ukraine issues — and the unusual level of access Patel had to the president.

"It's crazy," said one person familiar with Vindman's testimony. "Vindman should have been in that meeting."

Bertrand reports Vindman testified that Patel was constantly going around the NSC to feed Trump luxurious droppings of fact-free Ukraine bullshit, which obviously made Trump madder and madder because of the imaginary things Ukraine was doing in his underpants drawer as he slept each night. "That upset Vindman, along with Hill and Bolton, he testified, because they were constantly having to counter that narrative with the president."

Bertrand further reports that Vindman wasn't too mean about Patel during his testimony, on account of how Fucking Devin was literally present in the SCIF, and you know what happens when you make fun of Fucking Devin's special best buddy pals right in front of him, well you see he moos a lot, allegedly.

As for other updates from Vindman's testimony, it was reportedly a screaming match -- no, really, an actual one -- between Eric Swalwell and dumbshit Mark Meadows, because of how hard Republicans were trying to use Vindman's testimony to out the whistleblower. Bertrand also reports that Jewish GOP Rep. Lee Zeldin was the one in the room pushing the "dual loyalty" bullshit Fox News was pushing, because of how Vindman, the NSC's Ukraine director, has "[given] the Ukrainians guidance" on how to deal with noted legal genius Rudy Giuliani.

That's right, it was Zeldin. One of two whole Jewish Republicans in the House. That is just ... holy shit shameful.

Also Liz Cheney called Alex Vindman's wife yesterday to say sorry Republicans were being such hot garbage but we're sure Cheney did something monstrous like eat a puppy or something after she hung up, just to cancel out her good deed.

You know, allegedly.

Also too, right on cue, 12 minutes before we turned this in:


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Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the managing editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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