Re: President of the US clueless
Trump didn't give the Ukraine the money, Congress did through the appropriation process. The accusation is that Trump held up the delivery of the money to induce Ukraine to investigate Biden's son.
I don't see any mention of conditional funding, and Zelenskyy also mentioned they're thinking of buying more weapons. AFAIK there was an initial funding appropriation, then some curtailment due to the US not wanting money/weapons/training going to some of Ukraine's far-right groups like the 'Azov Battalion' or 'Right Sector', which started out as paramilitaries, but then got folded into Ukraine's military under Poroshenko's government. Given they're rather.. extreme, that's arguably not a good thing. But a big political challenge for Zelenskyy.
I'm no Trump fan, but the phone call transcript reads a lot more like usual international relations between a donor and a recipient, plus usual political shenanigans (The Trump Russian collusion investigation had ties to British nationals using some of their official contacts in Britain's civil service and government to gather some of the initial dossier on Trump.)
Agreed. It was also interesting to see the comments about the EU's support for Ukraine, which hasn't necessarily lived up to the hopes & dreams offered pre-coup. So it lost Russia as a trading partner, and discovered that the EU has quotas in agriculture that limit what Ukraine can trade with the rest of the EU.
As for the CrowdStrike bit, that seems a bit odd.. But the whole 'Russiagate' thing was very messy, including the alleged DNC 'hack' that CrowdStrike allegedly investigated. I also suspect Ukrainians had a hand in Steele's dossier and sourced some of the allegations in that. Ukraine wasn't & isn't exactly a fan of Russia at the moment, so probably quite happy to smear it's opponent. Plus there was also an investigation by CrowdStrike into hacking & compromising Ukrainian artillery systems. And Ukraine has quite a few skilled IT people, both developers & hackers, so the question may have been to find out more about those activities.
The transcript seems to differ from the original whistleblower allegations quite substantially though, so it'll be interesting to see if the impeachment inquiry sheds more light on whether that was a political act, or an act of conscience.. And of course whether the Biden's role(s) in Ukraine was appropriate and lawful.