Vail Daily column: From Russia with love |

Vail Daily column: From Russia with love

Butch Mazzuca
Butch Mazzuca |

I look forward to receiving emails after my commentaries appear in the Daily. Whether people agree or disagree with my comments, it’s always interesting and frequently enlightening to read other perspectives. Most people are thoughtful and respectful, but as one might expect, there are always a few who just want to pick a fight. In fact last week one gentleman even went so far as to make a not-so-subtle reference to my heritage — oh well, it takes all kinds.

Two people including a friend emailed a link to an American Thinker article regarding Trump’s standing in his class at Wharton, while several others focused on Trump’s sometimes very boorish behavior.

But what was conspicuously absent were any emails defending Hillary Clinton’s character vis-a-vis her untrustworthiness quotient the eyes of the American people.

So how might the Hillary campaign combat the perception that she’s untrustworthy? All is fair in love, war and politics, right? It appears then that Hillary and the Democratic National Convention are ginning up attacks on Trump for his comments about the Russians and Hillary’s emails. It makes no difference that Trump said he was being sarcastic; what’s important to much of the media is using a facetious off the cuff remark to deflect criticism of Mrs. Clinton’s missing emails and her mishandling of highly sensitive classified material.

I get it that the majority of the media is pro-Hillary and therefore will focus their attacks on Trump; nonetheless, I find it disheartening that they ignore the other Russian story — the one involving the connection between the Clinton Foundation and Russian investment bankers.

We’ll only read about or hear bits and pieces of this story because by and large it’s been relegated to the back pages of The New York Times and certainly not discussed by the liberal talking heads.

But some in Congress see it differently, and on July 15 a request was made to the FBI to formally investigate the Clinton Foundation vis-a-vis the purchase of Uranium One. For those unfamiliar with the story, Uranium One is a Russian company that acquired control of a significant percentage America’s uranium production capacity during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state.

One aspect of the matter the FBI will investigate is the series of events leading up to Uranium One’s chairman donating $2.35 million to the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation. Making the situation even more curious, the State Department must approve such transactions. And as secretary of state, Hillary Clinton was one of several administration officials who approved the sale of 20 percent of our uranium production capacity to Russia.

Further to this matter, The New York Times reported that former President Bill Clinton “received $500,000 for a Moscow speech from a Russian investment bank promoting Uranium One stock,” after the Russians declared their intent to acquire control of Uranium One.

The foregoing is not supposition, conspiracy theory, or speculation; these are facts. It’s also a fact the Clinton Foundation failed to report to the IRS almost $2.5 million in donations from a Russian investment bank, so I again ask rhetorically, why does the media focus on an off-hand remark by the Republican candidate (whether ill-advised or not) yet give the Democratic candidate a free pass regarding her very real Russian connection?

I don’t know if Bill and Hillary did anything illegal or unethical regarding Uranium One. But this much is certain. There is absolutely no evidence that Trump was anything but sarcastic when he tried to keep Hillary’s email scandal on the front page, but it’s a matter of Congressional record that there was a significant financial connection between the Clinton Foundation and Russian investment banks. Nonetheless, it should come as no surprise as to which story The New York Times and most of the media will focus its attention.

Quote of the day: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” — Albert Einstein

Butch Mazzuca, of Edwards, writes regularly for the Vail Daily. He can be reached at

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