Trump’s Impeachment Revenge: Vindman Is Bullied Into Retiring
By Robin Wright
Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, in full-dress Army uniform and with a Purple Heart pinned to his chest, ended his opening statement during the impeachment hearings on President Trump last fall by addressing his father. “Dad, my sitting here today in the U.S. Capitol, talking to our elected officials, is proof that you made the right decision, forty years ago, to leave the Soviet Union and come here to the United States of America, in search of a better life for our family,” he said. “Do not worry—I will be fine for telling the truth.” It was one of the most memorable moments in the historic hearings. With only the family’s suitcases and seven hundred and fifty dollars to his name, Vindman’s father had brought his three young sons and their grandmother to the United States in 1979, shortly after his wife died. All three Vindman boys ended up serving in the U.S. military, out of a “deep sense of gratitude,” as Vindman testified. Over the next four decades, Vindman amassed impeccable credentials: a Harvard degree, a dozen medals for military valor, diplomatic posts at the U.S. Embassies in Russia and Ukraine, and positions as a Russia specialist for the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and at the National Security Council. Vindman and his twin brother, Yevgeny, were even featured in a PBS documentary by Ken Burns.