Where in the world is Rudy Giuliani?
With news that three House Committees are investigating the Trump attorney’s efforts to pressure the Ukrainian government to look for dirt on Joe Biden, it’s a question worth asking.
While serving as President Trump’s personal lawyer, the former New York City mayor has traveled abroad to meet with Ukrainian officials. But he’s also traveled to Europe and the Middle East to carry out unrelated consulting work and attend speaking engagements.
TPM has gathered reporting on Giuliani’s foreign adventures since taking office, consolidating them in one map that reveals the extent of his global peddling.
He traveled to the capital of Yerevan in October 2018 for a pro-Russian conference there, telling reporters he was not attending in his “capacity as a private lawyer to President Trump.”
Giuliani has traveled to Ukraine multiple times over the past decade. But it was a November 2017 trip to the city of Kharkiv that raised eyebrows, in part because of the person who invited him: Russian-Ukrainian developer Pavel Fuchs, who negotiated with Trump in the 2000s to build a Trump Tower Moscow. Giuliani has said the trip was for security consulting for the city of Kharkiv.
Giuliani also planned a trip in May 2019 to dig up dirt on presidential candidate Joe Biden, but he canned that effort amid public outcry.
Most recently, his antics — which included an August meeting in Spain with a foreign policy adviser to the Ukrainian President — have caught the attention of the House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs, and Oversight Committees, which sent letters to the White House and State Department to investigate Giuliani’s work “outside legitimate law enforcement and diplomatic channels.”
Giuliani’s 2017 sojourn to Turkey has been largely forgotten amid a torrent of other scandals, but, in some ways, it set the tone for what was to come. The trip centered around a Turkish gold trader charged with conspiring to evade U.S. sanctions on Iran. Hired as a representative of the trader, Giuliani traveled to Turkey to meet with President Tayyip Recep Erdogan and with U.S. officials “to discuss a possible disposition” of the case, which reportedly would have seen the prosecution ending in a prisoner swap.
The judge in the case told Courthouse News that “had Rudy succeeded, he and [Presidents Trump and Erdogan] would have helped very significantly the country of Iran.”
Giuliani met with the King of Bahrain in the peninsular gulf state in December 2018 where, according to the country’s state news agency, “topics of joint interests” were discussed. In May, Giuliani’s security firm signed a consulting contract with Bahrain.
Relatively little is known about Giuliani’s work for Qatar. He has said that he worked for the Qataris on an investigation and, according to Reuters, traveled to Doha in April 2017, weeks before agreeing to work pro bono as President Trump’s personal attorney. Some Giuliani associates, including former Attorney General Michael Mukasey, have been hired by the gulf state to “solicit the help of U.S. government officials” in resolving its dispute with Saudi Arabia.
Giuliani has traveled to Israel multiple times during the Trump Administration, including a June 2018 voyage that led him to bust some dance moves in Jerusalem. That was part of a trip that saw him speak at a conference where he trashed both the Mueller investigation and Stormy Daniels. Giuliani also rang the opening bell at the Tel Aviv stock exchange during a June 2017 visit that was connected to his former law firm Greenberg Traurig.
The Balkan republic plays host to the Mujahedin el-Khalq, a bizarre Iranian exile group that has faced accusations of being a cult. Giuliani traveled there in July 2019 with Joe Lieberman to a conference at the socialist-Islamic group’s recently built Ashraf 3 compound. He also traveled there in March 2018 for the Iranian New Year celebration of Nowruz. MEK is reportedly no longer ruled out in Trump Administration planning as a potential successor to the current Iranian regime.
At another June 2018 MEK rally in Paris, Giuliani called for the overthrow of Iran’s government. Thought it is known that the Trump attorney accepts speaking fees for his MEK work, the exact amount remains unclear.
Giuliani’s trip to Poland in February 2019 was another MEK-sponsored appearance, at a Warsaw conference that occurred at the same time that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Vice President Mike Pence were in the country for a summit on the Middle East. Giuliani did not restrict his dealings in Warsaw to MEK: he met on the side with a Ukrainian prosecutor who later offered him dirt on the Biden family.
Josh Kovensky is an investigative reporter for Talking Points Memo, based in New York. He previously worked for the Kyiv Post in Ukraine, covering politics, business, and corruption there.
By Josh Kovensky, talkingpointsmemo