Cliff Notes for The New Yorker’s #Azerbaijan piece (because man

Cliff Notes for The New Yorker’s #Azerbaijan piece (because man, it ain’t an easy read.) a) Trump goes into hotel deal with corrupt businessman tied with Azeri transport minister. b) This is Azerbaijan, land of oil, where President Heydar Aliyev recently appointed his wife to be Vice-President. c)Transport Czar awards contract to Iranian construction company whose chairman became head of Raman, an Iranian construction firm controlled by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Bad hombres (or in Russian, Plokhii Cheloveki) d) MONEY GRAPH: “Alan Garten, the Trump Organization lawyer, did not deny that there was corruption involved in the project. ***“I’m not going to sit here and defend the Mammadovs,” he said. But, from a legal standpoint, he argued, the Trump Organization was blameless. In his opinion, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act doesn’t apply to the Baku deal, even if corruption occurred. “We didn’t own it,” he said of the hotel. “We had no equity. We didn’t control the project. The flow of funds is in the wrong direction.” He added, “We did not pay any money to anyone. Therefore, it could not be a violation of the F.C.P.A.” E) Trump lawyer accused of misreading federal laws. Surprise. “No, that’s just wrong,” Jessica Tillipman, an assistant dean at George Washington University Law School, who specializes in the F.C.P.A., said. “You can’t go into business deals in Azerbaijan assuming that you are immune from the F.C.P.A.” She added, “Nor can you escape liability by looking the other way.