A source close to the Trump administration informs Breitbart News that Army Lt. Col. Yevgeny Vindman, a senior ethics lawyer for the National Security Council (NSC), is in charge of reviewing all publications by current and former NSC officials.
The official added that Yevgeny Vindman could have seen former National Security Advisor John Bolton’s draft manuscript after it was submitted for prepublication review at the end of December.
The review is a standard process that allows the NSC to review book manuscripts, op-eds, or any other material for any classified material to be eliminated before publication.
The New York Times reported Sunday evening that Bolton’s draft book manuscript, which had been submitted to the NSC for prepublication review on Dec. 30, alleged that President Trump told Bolton in August 2019 that he wanted to withhold security assistance to Ukraine until it agreed to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, among others.
It was not clear if the Times had seen the Bolton manuscript; its sources were “multiple people” who “described Mr. Bolton’s account of the Ukraine affair.”
Bolton’s lawyer, Chuck Cooper, issued a statement in which he said: “It is clear, regrettably, from The New York Times article published today that the prepublication review process has been corrupted.” He did not confirm or deny the Times‘ reporting on the content of the manuscript.
Yevegeny Vindman is the identical twin brother of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, who is one of Democrats’ key witnesses in the impeachment of President Donald Trump. The brothers have offices across from each other.
Alexander Vindman told the House Intelligence Committee in his closed-door deposition that he told his brother, Yevgeny, about President Trump’s July 25th call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
In November, Yevgeny Vindman attended his brother’s public testimony at the House impeachment inquiry.
The Wall Street Journal described Vindman as “an NSC lawyer handling ethics issues.” Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman described his brother as the “lead ethics official” at the NSC. A U.S. Office of Government Ethics web page, updated on Friday, identifies Yevegeny Vindman as the “Alternate Designated Agency Ethics Official” for the NSC.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.