The Atlantic Council, which is funded by Burisma, the Ukraine natural gas company at the center of the scandal involving Joe and Hunter Biden, had among its membership a staffer who works for Rep. Adam Schiff, a report said.
Other major donors to the Atlantic Council in 2016 include Google, billionaire activist George Soros’s Open Society network and a law firm integrally involved with the Russia “dossier” that led to the Mueller investigation of President Donald Trump.
The Breitbart report noted that 2016 donors to the Atlantic Council included Perkins Coie, the law firm that represented the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign, and also reportedly helped draft the Google-tied CrowdStrike firm to aid with the DNC’s allegedly hacked server to which the DNC denied the FBI access.
Google’s parent company led a funding drive to provide seed capital to CrowdStrike.
On behalf of the DNC and Clinton’s campaign, Perkins Coie also paid the controversial Fusion GPS firm to produce the infamous, largely-discredited anti-Trump dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele.
The Schiff staffer, Sean Misko, has been described as “close friends” with Eric Ciaramella, whom Real Clear Investigations suggests is the likely so-called whistleblower, Breitbart News reported on Nov. 26.
“Misko reportedly joined Schiff’s staff at the House Intelligence Committee in August – the same month the so-called whistleblower’s complaint was filed after first reportedly interfacing with a staffer for Schiff’s office,” the report said.
The Washington Examiner described Misko as having a “bro-like” friendship with Ciaramella, calling the duo “close friends.”
The Examiner reported that Misko and Ciaramella “had similarly antagonistic attitudes toward the Trump administration and were witnessed by a former National Security Council official, like Ciaramella, a nonpolitical appointee, to frequently be around one another.”
“My understanding was that they were friendly with one another,” said the former NSC official, who was described as senior to Ciaramella. “They would walk around the halls. Get lunch together and stuff like that.” He described them as “very much cut from the same cloth,” and their friendship as “bro-like.”
Misko served as a fellow at the Atlantic Council in 2015 and is also listed as providing a donation of up to $999 to the think tank in 2016.
Misko is the second Schiff staffer to have worked for the Atlantic Council.
Thomas Eager, a staffer on Schiff’s House Intelligence Committee, is currently a fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Congressional Fellowship, a bipartisan program that says it “educates congressional staff on current events in the Eurasia region.”
Burisma in January 2017 signed a “cooperative agreement” with the Council to specifically sponsor the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center, where Eager serves as a fellow.
As Breitbart News reported, itinerary for a trip to Ukraine in August organized by the Atlantic Council reveals that Eager held a meeting during the trip with acting U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bill Taylor, now a key witness for Democrats pursuing impeachment.
Breitbart News reported that Taylor himself has evidenced a close relationship with the Atlantic Council think tank, writing Ukraine policy pieces with the organization’s director and analysis articles published by the Council.
Eager’s August trip to Ukraine was billed as a bipartisan “Ukraine Study Trip” in which ten Congressional staffers participated.
A closer look at the itinerary for the Aug. 24 to Aug. 31 trip shows that the delegation’s first meeting upon arrival in Ukraine was with Taylor.
“The dates of the pre-planned trip are instructive. Eager’s visit to Ukraine sponsored by the Burisma-funded Atlantic Council began 12 days after the so-called ‘whistleblower’ officially filed his Aug. 12 complaint,” Breitbart News noted.
Schiff and his office have offered seemingly conflicting statements on the timeline of the contact between the so-called whistleblower and Schiff’s office.
Schiff told MSNBC on Sept. 17: “We have not spoken directly with the whistleblower. We would like to.”
Schiff’s spokesperson, Patrick Boland, was quoted on Oct. 2 saying, “At no point did the committee review or receive the complaint in advance.” Boland said Schiff’s committee received the complaint the night before it publicly released the document.
On Oct 2, however, The New York Times reported that Schiff received some of the contents of the complaint through an unnamed House Intelligence Committee aide initially contacted by the so-called “whistleblower,” described as a CIA officer.
The Times reported the aide “shared some of what the officer conveyed to Schiff.” The referenced officer refers to the so-called “whistleblower.”
The Times also reported: “By the time the whistle-blower filed his complaint, Schiff and his staff knew at least vaguely what it contained.”
Schiff conceded that he was not clear enough about his contact with the so-called “whistleblower.”
“I should have been much more clear,” Schiff said.