There has been a lot of smoke and diversion put up with regards to alleged whistleblower Eric Ciaramella thanks to the work of his lawyer, Mark Zaid, and the charitable foundation supporting this effort–Whistleblower Aid. I think it is time to set the record straight and raise some serious questions about both Ciaramella and the charity backing him.
Eric Ciaramella, according to various press reports, is a CIA intelligence analyst who also has close ties to Democrats working against Donald Trump. Ciaramella worked at the National Security Council on the Ukraine issue and had repeated contacts with individuals, such as DNC operative Alexandra Chalupa, who were involved in the plot to smear Donald Trump as an agent of Russia. It also is reported that Ciaramella was suspected of being the source for a false story claiming that former FBI Director Comey was fired because Vladimir Putin told Trump to do it. And, most importantly, Ciaramella was back at CIA Headquarters when Donald Trump spoke with Ukraine's President Zelensky. He did not listen in on the call nor did he have access to the transcript.
Here's the bottomline–Ciaramella, lacking first hand information, does not qualify as a whistleblower. As a former intelligence analyst, like Ciaramella, I know that you must have first hand information. What qualifies as first hand? You listened in on the conversation. You read the transcript. Or, and no one has raised this, you have a piece of human or signals intelligence that tells a different story from the publicized transcript. ZERO evidence for any of this. Ciaramella's only qualification is that he does not like Trump and his policies towards Ukraine.
Then there is the indisputable fact that the Ukrainian President is on the record, in public, denying any pressure and denying any quid pro quo.
All of these facts justify bringing Mr. Ciaramella before Congress, putting him under oath and getting him to explain the foundation for his claims. But Democrats and anti-Trumpers are saying "no" and insisting that the identity of the whistleblower must be protected at all costs. That is bunk. There is only one legitimate reason to keep the whistleblower's identity secret–i.e., if he or she was undercover, either official or non-official. Ciaramella was not undercover. He is no different from any other civil servant who works in any other part of the Federal bureaucracy. He just happens to hold a Top Secret clearance.
I know several whistleblowers who have been vilified publicly by the very bureaucracies where they exposed wrong doing–Bill Binney (NSA), Kirk Wiebe (NSA), Ed Loomis (NSA), Russ Tice (NSA), Diane Roark (Congress), John Kiriakou (CIA) and Peter Van Buren (State). In none of these cases was there a public outcry to protect their identity. And there is one big difference between these whistleblowers and Ciaramella–they had first hand knowledge about wrongdoing in their respective organizations.
Which brings me to the not-for-profit organization that is backing Ciaramella–Whistleblower Aid. According to Wikipedia:
In September 2017, Tye and lawyer Mark Zaid cofounded Whistleblower Aid, a nonprofit law firm.
But public records tell a different story. Whistleblower Aid is a "doing-business-as" name. The incorporated name is Values United. It was incorporated in Louisiana in April 2009. The incorporation subsequently was revoked in 2013 and reinstated on 13 March 2017. Here is the Louisiana document:
Values United was granted 501 (c) (3) status on 30 March 2017 (you can find the determination letter here.)
So, it was organized in March of 2017, not September. A minor point I suppose but a key fact.
What do we find when we look at the 990 tax return required for not-for-profits? The DBA name for Values United is Whistleblower Aid:
There is another oddity revealed in the tax return for Whistleblower Aid–huge liabilities. Total assets at the end of 2017 are $133,106.00. Total liabilities? $752,823.00. Where was the money going? Who was getting paid? And how is an organization with more than $600,000 in debt able to stay afloat. True not-for-profits are supposed to operate according to strict oversight and rules. Is Whistleblower Aid doing what it is chartered to do or is it acting as a partisan political organization, something a charitable group is not allowed to do. It is worth looking at.
Andrei Martyanov (aka SmoothieX12) says
and had repeated contacts with individuals, such as DNC operative Alexandra Chalupa
So, all roads, then, lead to a criminal undercover org of Taco Bell. When I thought it couldn’t get any more tragicomic, it did. Now Taco Bell’s commercials chihuahua comes in mind with “drop the Chalupa” line. I wonder what do they mean by “drop”.
State attorney general offices provide charitable non-profit oversight and offer a complaint process. George Soros has been campaigning to buy up AG offices, since they wield so much power behind the spotlight. Someone is Louisiana needs to file an AG complaint.
Excellent investigative reporting.
Maybe Fox News will pick it up and run
Elmo Zoneball says
Liabilities are explained on the attached schedules.
It appears the bulk of the liabilities (nearly $600k) are in the form of loans made TO “Values United” by the principal officer and his father.
They appear to have financed the bulk of the activity for 2017 via the loans.
They must not have filed a tax return for 2018 (or the IRS hasn’t posted it yet.)
Note sure what is going on, but it does appear to be strange. Hard to tell what exactly they are spending the money on, other than nearly $300k for a flashy Media Strategy firm.
Whistleblower Aid isn’t listed in Charity Navigator, so much for transparency.
Is it merely coincidence that it was transformed into “Whistleblower Aid” this late Spring just when IC Inspector General Michael Atkinson was installed, the IG who changed whistle blower policies which now no longer require firsthand knowledge?
This sure seems like one of Chuck Schumer’s “6 ways from Sunday” the IC is trying, to get back at Trump. I wonder who funds this “charity”?
Larry Johnson says
That’s not right. It was September 2017.
Who backed the significant debt of this operation is an equally interesting question? . What do the minutes of the board of directors meetings disclose. How did this significant debt conform to its stated charitable intent, that allowed its IRS tax exempt status. How “charitable” will it be if this organization defaults on this amount of debt? More information, please.
Why do the names “Values United” and “Volunteers United” sound so much like a counter-punch to “Citizens United”, the anathema SCOTUS ruling to both Democrats and the big public sector unions.
blue peacock says
It seems to me that Trump is constantly on the back foot playing defense. He does not seem proactive in countering his opposition and directly taking the fight to his opponents.
He didn’t declassify initially to avoid accusations of obstruction of the Mueller special counsel. Now that Mueller didn’t lay the knockout punch, they’ve found another reason to claim obstruction with the Ukraine quid pro quo. All along he knew that Rosenstein played him by setting up Mueller, yet he did not fire him. Same with Wray. He’s now passed the buck on to Barr who has his own agenda and prerogatives.
With LTC Vindman’s testimony out there he should be all over his insubordination and as C-in-C should order his court martial.
The fact that none of the insiders in his administration have a paid any price for their acts of leaking and stories of innuendo and fanning the flames to have him impeached is only emboldening them to escalate and be even more brazen.
Yeah. Looks more like a vanity charity. Charity fraud shows up on the expenses side that go to favored parties and has a lot of income that comes from “donors” that expect something in return. Certain well known foundations by former presidents come to mind. Charitable foundations are quite a racket.
Am I mistaken or isn’t this form, so conveniently revised just this past August, 2019, the “whistleblower” form which now reflects the policy change of permitting secondhand information?
b of Moonofalabama has a recent article on the UK “charity” Institute of Statecraft:
Following a complaint, the Scottish Charity Regulator investigated and concluded that certain aspects of the IOS activities could not be classed as charitable.
For Spook aficionados, interesting commentary on the alleged biological relationship to the alleged “Whistleblower”,Eric Ciaramella, and the former head of See Eye Aye Counterintelligence, James Jesus Angleton:
”Here’s the bottomline–Ciaramella, lacking first hand information, does not qualify as a whistleblower.”
‘If’ Ciaramella is the whistleblower who set him up to be the whistleblower?
Could it be whistleblower Lt. Vindman, who was there, or his twin brother who is a lawyer in the NSC?
Currently staring in Congress Impeachment testimony against Trump
Lt. Vindman————Ukraine Jewish refugee NSC
Amb Gordon Sondland—-Russian Jewish refugee
Amb Marie Yovanovich- Russian Jewish refugee
Fiona Hill ————Dual US-UK citizen. Studied under Richard Pipes, in 1998 at Harvard, Russian expert.
Currently staring in Congress Impeachment testimony against Trump
Lt. Vindman-Russian—Ukraine Jewish refugee NSC
Amb Gordon Sondland—-Polish/Russian Jewish refugee
Amb Marie Yovanovitch – Russian Jewish refugee
Fiona Hill –Dual US-UK citizen. Studied under Richard Pipes, in 1998 at Harvard, Russian expert.
I have read the testimonies and several things jump out. All these people are outspoken anti Russia activist and pro Ukraine. According to their statements Russia is the ultimate evil. Vindman, Yovanovitch and Hill all use the same description…”Ukraine needs US aid because it is fighting for US interest and against Russian aggression’. Their testimonies were as much or more about why we should support Ukraine then about what Trump said or didn’t say.
This Trump coup is coming from the NSC and the State Department, not the CIA this time.
Sorry Larry — I see that you were correcting me for misstating the date that Values United began DBA Whistleblower Aid.
Many are hoping the Durham investigation will settle the score and that justice, while not swift, is nevertheless sure. It’ll be a huge disappointment (to say the least) if none of the malefactors pay a hefty price.
A while back, it took me 2 years and lots of legal expenses to finally get satisfaction from a flooring company, so I would expect something like SEDITIOUS CONSPIRACY to take a little longer!
Too Hot for YouTube
Calling All Patriots to Intelligence War, with Special Guest, Bill Binney
Less than 24 hours after our Nov. 7 live “fireside chat” broadcast, YouTube said our video was “was flagged for review” and they’ve made it unavailable for public viewing. While we’re in the process of appealing this, we’ve made our broadcast available in Vimeo.
Clearly we’ve struck a nerve! In this too hot for YouTube broadcast, LaRouchePAC’s Barbara Boyd is joined by William Binney (former NSA and member of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, VIPS). They give the latest in the coup attempt against President Donald Trump.
Mark Zaid, the attorney for the fake whistleblower, Eric Ciaramella, laid out the entire plot of what we now see unfolding before our eyes in a series of tweets, starting back in January of 2017. Zaid tweeted: “the coup has started” and “impeachment will follow ultimately.” In July of 2017, Ciarmella said that CNN would play a key role in the coup and that, “We will get rid of him, and this country is strong enough to survive even him and his supporters.” Zaid further promised that the coup would take place in a series of steps and that as one member of RESIST, within the Administration fell, two others would take their place.
Values United, not rated.
ex PFC Chuck says
The post-Clinton Deomcratic Party establishment has adapted to the Citizens United decision just fine, thank you very much. They just took their cue from Groucho Marx: “These are my principles! You don’t like them? I have others.”
Out West we get two standard slurs against all conservatives (aka alt right, far right, right wingers, Fox and Friends and white supremists:
Conservatives are tools of Citizen United and the Koch Bros. Boooo, hisss, booo!
Clinton swore the first thing she would do as POTUS was get a constitutional amendment against Citizens United. You report an interesting change of heart. Tell me more. Why is Citizens United now working for the Democrat Party – the post-Clinton Democrat party, soon to become the Neo-Clinton party?
Trump is always getting ahead of their game, as well as punching back defensively. He is changing the dynamics. One must listen carefully. So little of his proactive charges filter through the media – even WSJ and now Fox are playing mind games against Trump. Give Kellyanne Conway some credit – she still gets ahead of the story like no one else.
Judicial Watch just also had a youtube video yanked because Fitton talked about leaker Ciaramella. That too was too hot for youtube to handle.
jd hawkins says
“I wonder what do they mean by “drop”.
I think they were just informing us consumers not to be fooled by the Smooth-Talking Chalupa ‘sellers’.
jd hawkins says
I believe you’d make a good tracker!
Here’s some more grit regarding Eric Ciaramella, and the coup against POTUS Trump
Facebook And YouTube Erase All Mentions Of Anti-Trump Whistleblower’s Name
Not only are Facebook and YouTube’s standards a form of censorship, they are an example of partisanship on the largest social media platforms in the world.
Dershowitz Likens Dem Impeachment Obsession to Stalin’s KGB — ‘Show Me the Man, and I’ll Find You the Crime’
Nikki Haley claims top aides [Tillerson, Kelly] tried to recruit her to ‘save the country’ by undermining Trump
Impeachment Will Hit a Brick Wall in Senate If House Shields Whistleblower, Graham Says
Rand Paul: No law stops me from saying whistleblower’s name
I’m willing to bet those “loans” are forgived, meaning they weren’t in fact loans but a way to fund Values United.
Most impressive Mr. Johnson. H/t to your lurkers/readers as well –
I applaud THIS whistleblower’s effort. Great points are made in the complaint. Although, the CTH item you linked to does a good job of connecting ICIG Atkinson, the complaint’s addressee, to DOJ “insurance policy” plotters, so I fear he’ll stonewall.
I commented on another thread a few weeks ago that the trend of crowdfunding incentivizes corruption: I’ve read that the woman who smeared Judge Kavanaugh got over a million dollars in a GoFundMe effort, even though she had absolutely no proof to back up her claims and her own witnesses refuted her testimony. It’s a sinister trend that should be unlawful IMO.
Rebecca Wick says
Not likely anymore.
Eric Ciaramella Was Hosting 2016 WH Meeting Where Ukrainian Officials Were Told to Drop Investigation on Hunter Biden
[According to White House visitor logs Eric Ciaramella was hosting the January 19, 2016 White House meeting where Ukrainian officials were told to drop the investigation into Hunter Biden.]
There’s a Russian singer (one of my favorites) named Lolita. She sang a song called ‘The Titanic’ three years ago, which IMHO find relevant to today’s circus by Schiff and his brood. In one word, a cluster.
Lolita’s The Titanic
Лолита – На Титанике