New York Post reporter Miranda Devine has been at the center of the Hunter Biden laptop saga. In October of 2020, just weeks before Election Day, Devine and her investigative newshounds broke a story that threatened to break Joe Biden and the Democratic Party’s presidential aspirations: the Hunter Biden laptop from Hell.
Immediately, Biden’s allies in the press, Silicon Valley, and official Washington scrambled to kill the story. A Beltway cabal of 51 intelligence officials accused the veteran reporter of spreading "Russian disinformation." Social media giants, Twitter and Facebook, censored and suppressed her reporting.
Now, two years later, Devine, author of the best-selling book “Laptop from Hell” is finally getting vindication. In a publicly released letter, Hunter Biden's lawyers inadvertently confirmed that the waylaid laptop did, indeed, belong to the president’s son all along. Now, with Republicans wielding the House gavel, the Biden family business is under congressional scrutiny.
Devine tells Die Weltwoche, “The classified document scandal is now feeding into the original Hunter Biden scandal,” referring to the top secret documents recently discovered scattered about the president’s various properties, including his personal home office.
The Australian investigator reveals that she has uncovered more evidence from Hunter’s laptop that suggests the drug addled bagman traded valuable insider information from the highest levels of government.
Weltwoche: Hunter Biden was in possession of a document that may be based on classified information. What is the content of that document?
Devine: I don't know that this document comes from a classified document. All I can say is that it is a most peculiar, most uncharacteristic email written by Hunter Biden to his business partner, Devon Archer, in 2014. It's uncharacteristic because it's very long. It's 1,300 words. It is very well-informed, very well-written, very coherent. Remembering that Hunter Biden, at this point, was a crack addict with a very chaotic lifestyle. He would go missing. He would go on benders. He really couldn't even answer his own emails. But this is a very strategic email, and it talks about Ukraine. There are 22 points, and it's just very smart.
Weltwoche: It gives a strategic outlook that has very much become reality today.
Devine: It talks about Russia. It predicts that Russia is going to start invading or taking over parts of Ukraine. It predicts who is going to win the Ukrainian upcoming election. It predicts that the US — this is interesting — is going to ramp up its sanctions against Russia. It also predicts that the European Union is going to have problems, that there will be a threat to the support from the European Union (quote, "b/c they are pussies") to incur steep energy price rises. He also instructs Devon Archer to buy a burner phone, presumably to keep their conversations private. This email was sent at a time when Hunter Biden was desperately wanting to make money. He was angling to get on the board of Burisma which was going to pay him $83,000 a month. About a month after writing this email, he did go on that board.
Weltwoche: We need to backtrack to capture the magnitude of Hunter’s business in Ukraine. In February 2014, a coup ousted Moscow’s puppet, then-President Viktor Janukowic. Russia sent troops to occupy the Crimea and parts of eastern Ukraine. Obama then appointed Vice President Joe Biden as his envoy to Ukraine. As soon as Biden moves into Ukraine, his son Hunter follows suit with his business company, Rosemont Seneca Partners.
Devine: The email was written just a week before Joe Biden was traveling to Ukraine to give them millions of dollars in aid for their energy industry. Also, Joe Biden, on that visit, lectured Ukraine (ironically enough) about corruption.
Weltwoche: “You have to be whiter than snow, or the whole world will abandon you,” Biden told the country’s newly elected president, Petro Poroshenko. In the meantime, his son jumps on the board of this corrupt company, cashing in. In this email, he strategically lays out his business options.
Devine: When you look at this email, it jumps out at you. It really has, unlike anything else that Hunter wrote in the nine years covered in the laptop, the distinct flavor of an official briefing and, perhaps, even a classified briefing.
Weltwoche: In other words, Joe Biden not only facilitated business opportunities for his son, using his power as Vice President. Hunter apparently also had access to information that private entrepreneurs do not have. The question is: Where did Hunter get this information from?
Devine: We know from a leak to CNN that the first tranche of the five troves of classified documents that have been found scattered in Joe Biden's house, his garage, his office at the University of Pennsylvania, were documents to do with Ukraine, the United Kingdom, and Iran. Two of those countries — the United Kingdom and Ukraine — are covered in this email. Ron Johnson, the Republican senator who probably has done more to investigate the Hunter Biden/Joe Biden corruption, immediately saw my story about it. He said it looks very suspicious, and it looks very much like the briefings that the State Department gives to senators when they travel overseas.
They're basically called “scene setters” and, presumably, they're classified, highly detailed information. Hunter Biden certainly was not a geopolitical analyst.
Weltwoche: So, is it possible that Hunter Biden had access to documents that were unlawfully in Joe Biden private possession? Or he had access to them through other channels, due to his father’s official position: Do you see these two options in play?
Devine: Yes, exactly. Selling classified information for his own private profit. That's what it looks like. Hunter Biden had a very rocky relationship with his wife during this period. He was in the throes of a divorce. He was having an affair with his late brother's widow. He was a crack addict. He was indulging in prostitution services, and he was bouncing around between high-price hotels, fleabag hotels, and his father's home. He was living in his father's house enough that he used his father's address as his official residence on his driver's license and various other forms.
Remember, this is a middle-aged man. There's a photograph on his laptop of him driving his father's Corvette that was stored in the garage along with those classified documents. He obviously had access to every part of the house, and I don’t think it beggars belief to think that he would've seen some classified material.
You see the sloppiness of Joe Biden with his treatment of these classified documents, and we know that there were no boundaries, no ethical boundaries, that any of the Bidens had when it came to making money from foreign countries. They just had dollars in their eyes and were grifting. It would be more surprising to me if Hunter Biden did not have access to classified material than if he did. I think this is really where Joe Biden comes unstuck. He's been influence peddling for more than four decades, since his earliest days as a senator in Delaware.
I think it's interesting to note that Delaware's a very unusual state. It is a small state that doesn't really produce anything. But it is very wealthy — thanks to the fact that a vast majority of US corporations incorporate in Delaware because it has very opaque rules and it's seen as the Cayman Island of America. Very easy to open up shell companies and so on, which is what Hunter Biden did. That gave Joe Biden an enormous amount of power and a lot of wealthy donors wanting to get favors from him and wanting to press bribes upon him.
Weltwoche: Back to Ukraine. The deeply corrupt county — and now theatre of war — plays a key role in the Biden business network, and it is the place where Joe Biden used his power which benefitted his son’s private deals. [As vice president] Biden even forced the Ukrainian government to fire the chief prosecutor who investigated Burisma, the corrupt company who had Hunter on its board.
Devine: Joe Biden famously boasted on video, some years later, about having threatened to withhold US aid from Ukraine unless the chief prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, was fired.
Weltwoche: “I said, ‘You’re not getting the billion.’ I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money,’” Biden recalled at a Council on Foreign Relations event. “Well, son of a bitch, he got fired.”
Devine: The story that's been put out in European media and by American establishment media has always been that this was a legitimate thing to do. It was what the State Department wanted, what everybody wanted, because Viktor Shokin, the prosecutor, was corrupt.
The evidence does not show that. In fact, it shows the opposite. Viktor Shokin was investigating Burisma, this very corrupt energy company, that was paying Hunter Biden $1 million a year. Just before Joe Biden asked Poroshenko for him to be fired, Shokin had issued a warrant and seized all the properties of the owner of Burisma, a former Ukrainian energy minister called Mykola Zlochevsky. Shokin had seized his house in Kyiv, a plot of land, some other property, and his Rolls-Royce, and Viktor Shokin said he was about to subpoena Hunter Biden and his American business partner, Devon Archer.
That investigation was ongoing. Not only that, Shokin had been retired, and he lived in a modest house. He was not regarded as a corrupt person. Everyone in Ukraine is corrupt, and you have to pay money to get jobs and so on. He did not have any trappings of corruption. He had retired, and President Poroshenko called him back and set him to work doing what Joe Biden and the Americans were telling Ukraine to do — and that was clean up corruption.
Joe Biden managed to get away with telling everybody that Shokin had to go because of corruption. Shokin did go because Biden withheld this aid. I think that's a big quid pro quo.
Weltwoche: The key question is: What did Joe Biden know about the family business and how was he personally involved in it? What is the key evidence that points to direct involvement of President Joe Biden?
Devine: This is the most important point, because this is not a story about Hunter Biden, a washed-up, middle-aged, off-and-on drug and sex addict. It's about Joe Biden, the president of the United States. There is voluminous evidence on the laptop but also from the testimony of Hunter Biden's former business partner, Tony Bobulinski, and others who haven't gone on the record, yet, but whom I have spoken to. There's ample evidence that Joe Biden knew about his son and his brother Jim Biden’s influence peddling around the world when he was vice president.
Weltwoche: There were direct meetings between Joe Biden and his son’s business partners that are well documented.
Devine: Yes, we can see (such meetings) on the laptop at least a dozen times. He met Hunter’s business partners in Beijing, when he took his son Hunter with him to meet the top officials of the Chinese Communist Party, in 2013, on Air Force Two. He met them in Washington, DC; he invited them to his vice presidential mansion. He also had dinner with them at a restaurant called “Cafe Milano,” which is an Italian restaurant, very popular in Washington, DC, in a private room. The guest list is on the laptop, emails inviting people, emails from his Ukrainian benefactor, for instance, thanking him for introducing him to his father.
Weltwoche: Hunter Biden set up meetings with business partners with the sole purpose to meet his father, and Joe attended.
Devine: Hunter Biden set up the dinner for his business partners from the Ukraine, from Russia, and from Kazakhstan to meet his father. That was the first email that we published in the New York Post, in October of 2020, showing Hunter Biden's Ukrainian benefactor from this energy company, Burisma, that was paying him $83,000 a month to sit on its board, and he thanked Hunter for introducing him to his father in Washington, DC, when Joe Biden was vice president.
Now, when we publish that, it was three weeks before the 2020 presidential election, and Joe Biden went to ground, refused to answer questions. His surrogates from the campaign denied it.
Then, six months later, after he was ensconced in the Oval Office as president, the Washington Post decided to fact-check a story I had just written because I just found that it wasn't just a meeting with this Ukrainian, but it was this Cafe Milano dinner with Hunter's business partners from three different countries. I published that, and the Washington Post, running cover for Joe Biden, as usual, decided that they would demolish my story. But, lo and behold, when they went to the White House, the White House could not deny that this happened because I had produced evidence from the laptop. And, so, they [the Post or WH?] admitted, yes, that dinner happened, but it was nothing nefarious and Joe Biden didn't stay for very long.
I know from talking to people who were there that Joe Biden stayed for the entire meal. He didn't drink alcohol, but he was there in the room. There were about ten people there. This was a pattern of his behavior. When Hunter Biden's former business partner, Tony Bobulinski, who was organizing some of the China deals, met with Joe Biden, he said that he was instructed beforehand by Hunter Biden and his uncle Jim Biden not to say anything specific. The instructions were, "Keep the conversation at a high level." That's the way it works. You don't talk about the intricacies of the deal because, as Jim Biden told Tony Bobulinski, Joe Biden wants what he calls “plausible deniability” so that nothing sticks to him.
Weltwoche: You mentioned Hunter’s business partner, Tony Bobulinski. In an interview days before the 2020 elections, he confirmed that Joe Biden, indeed, did profit from Hunter’s business. He pointed to an email from 2017 about a liquidity breakdown according to which 10% of a lucrative Chinese energy conglomerate joint venture would be held by Hunter for "the big guy." Tony Bobulinski confirmed, "Yes, 'the big guy' is Joe Biden." What evidence did you find that "the big guy" is, indeed, Joe Biden?
Devine: There is evidence, on the laptop, by Bobulinski and the contents of his three phones that he handed over to the FBI before the election. I had that the day we published. And, so, when you put those two troves of material together, there's a lot of overlap, but there's a lot of augmentation that the Bobulinski material does because there are encrypted messages — WhatsApp messages that Hunter Biden and his business partners communicated on more freely than might have on text messages or on emails. Hunter, traditionally, was very tough in his emails, very careful.
What we see is that there are other instances on the laptop where "the big guy" is mentioned, and it's clear from the context that Joe Biden is the person being referred to. In one case, he's called "the big man." A Serbian person, who was trying to get into the United Nations as an official currying favor with Hunter to get favors from Joe, called Joe "the big man." Then, also on the WhatsApp messages that Tony Bobulinski provided, there are references, again, to “the big man,” or sometimes Hunter referred to Joe Biden as "my chairman." They were always very careful not to refer to Joe Biden by name. Occasionally, they slipped up.
At one stage, one of the business partners, who was a Biden family loyalist, reminds or tells Tony Bobulinski in a WhatsApp message, "Don't mention Joe by name. You know that they are paranoid.” Tony Bobulinski replies, "Well, they should be."
Weltwoche: Historically remarkable about your story is not only the content, but how it was treated by the mainstream and social media. The world recently has learned from Elon Musk’s publication of the “Twitter Files” that the Hunter Biden story had faced coordinated and deliberate censorship by Big Tech. Most disturbing is the involvement of intelligence operatives. Can you explain to our readers what is known about the interference of US intelligence in trying to kill your story?
Devine: Well, I think the coverup of our story on behalf of Joe Biden to ensure he became president is like Watergate. It's actually bigger than the original story of corruption, which is as old as Washington, and it is astonishing. Every day, really, we seem to learn more and more about the interference of the FBI in that 2020 election, particularly when it comes to the Hunter Biden laptop and the Joe Biden corruption story. Initially, we published our story on October 14, 2020, three weeks before the election, and we held it back until 5:00 AM from going online because we knew it would blow up.
Within a few hours, both Facebook and Twitter had censored the story, had throttled its reach, had stopped it from being shared. In fact, then-President Trump's press secretary tried to share it privately on direct messages in Twitter, and she was suspended. They were pulling out all of the stops to ensure that this story did not see the light of day. In fact, Twitter locked the New York Post account for more than two weeks until just a couple of days before the election. The New York Post is the oldest newspaper in America, and it's the third largest by circulation.
This was an enormous decision that these social media companies made, but now we know that they made them under pressure from the FBI, and we know that from, yes, the Twitter Files, but also before that from a lawsuit, a free speech lawsuit that's being brought against the Biden administration by the attorneys general of Missouri and Louisiana. What we found from both of those sources is that the FBI spent the weeks before the election pre-bunking our story, warning Twitter and Facebook to expect a dump of Russian disinformation to come. In Twitter's case, they told them that it would likely come in October and likely involve Hunter Biden.
Weltwoche: The FBI must have known that the laptop was real. They were in possession of the device since December 2019, when the laptop repair man, John Paul Mac Isaac, handed it over to them. Only much later, when Mac Isaac realized that the FBI was doing nothing, he gave a copy to Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani, who then passed a copy on to you.
Devine: There's another more sinister element of this story that I only discovered a few months ago. Mac Isaac gave the hard drive to Giuliani in August of 2020. Now, at that time, unbeknownst to Giuliani, the FBI was spying on him. They had a covert surveillance warrant on his icloud. They had access to all the emails that he had and all the messages, the iMessages. They would've had access to the email, in August of 2020, from John Paul Mac Isaac telling him [Giuliani] about what he'd found on the laptop and his concerns about national security.
This computer shop guy had done a very good job of forensically analyzing what was in the laptop. He was particularly concerned about Ukraine because, at that point (he was a Trump supporter), President Trump was being impeached. He wanted to get this material to, first of all, the FBI. He did that in December of 2019.
Eight months after Hunter Biden had abandoned the laptop, John Paul Mac Isaac realized that there was material on the laptop that was going to materially affect the impeachment process and would be helpful to Donald Trump and show that the Ukraine corruption with Biden was very real. He turned it over to the FBI, but they buried the laptop. They deliberately did not allow any investigation into the laptop. That just fell into a black hole.
Weltwoche: The FBI also talked to Bobulinski who spoke about Hunter Biden’s diverse business connections and the involvement of Joe Biden.
Devine: Just a few days before the election, Tony Bobulinski, Hunter Biden's former business partner, also was concerned about the Biden corruption and thought that the American people, or at least the FBI, ought to be aware of the nature of one of the candidates running for president. He went to the FBI, voluntarily; gave them a five-hour interview; and handed over the contents of his three devices. We know from FBI whistleblowers that his material was, again, buried. It was siloed away from prying eyes. It was basically affixed with a stamp, "Do not touch this because it's Russian disinformation."
Weltwoche: So, the FBI was in complete knowledge about the authenticity of the laptop. But they decided to kill your story with a remarkable concerted effort. 51 former high-level intelligence operatives published a letter saying that the laptop, and therefore your investigative reporting, had all the earmark of a Russian information operation.
Devine: It was published five days after our publication, October of 2020. Most of the signatories were from the CIA, including five former CIA directors or acting directors, and what they said was a lie. They had not seen any of the material. They had not asked to see any of the material. We would've been happy to show it to them, but they just used the power and the authority of their former high offices to, basically, destroy our story, demolish our story, and give Joe Biden a fig leaf.
When he went up on stage, a few days later, in the last presidential debate against Donald Trump, he used the letter to get himself off the hook. The rest of the media, after that letter came out, would not touch our story. So, that protected Joe Biden until the election.
Weltwoche: Do you have any idea who orchestrated this letter?
Devine: John Brennan — who was the former CIA director under Barack Obama, who lied to Congress, and who was involved in a lot of nefarious (activity) — I believe, orchestrated the letter. I think there were people who signed the letter, who knew and didn't care because they just didn't want Trump to win.
We have contacted them, repeatedly, since that letter was published more than two years ago, and they just refused to answer. One of them said, "Oh, well, I would've done the same thing again." Not one of them has ever said that they regret it or admitted that they did the wrong thing. It's really extraordinary. It's a blemish on all of them. I am shocked that they keep their security clearances, because they are a clear and present danger to America's national security and, really, global peace because they're liars and they have bad intentions. They interfered in a democratic election.
Weltwoche: After winning the majority in the House, Representative James Comer and Oversight Committee Republicans are investigating the Biden family's domestic and international business dealings. You are writing your second book. What will you focus on?
Devine: My deadline for the book is May, but it only will be published next year. There’s much more to the story. I think the laptop, plus the money trail, plus subpoenaing Hunter Biden's former business partners ought to ultimately show the details of the corruption of Joe Biden and his family. The classified documents also really bring home the danger to national security.
The president’s family got tens of millions of dollars from China. What we have seen, since he entered office, is that he has gone soft on China. The Trump administration had launched a so called “China Initiative” to stop the influence of China into American universities, like Stanford and Yale and the University of Pennsylvania, and so on. A few months ago, that was just stopped cold. Also on tariffs, and many other policies, you just see everything slowly unwinding.
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