Former NSC official Fiona Hill blasted sexist attitudes about women's anger in her impeachment testimony, and people love her for it

Fiona HillFiona HillLoren Elliot/Reuters

  • At a hearing in the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, former National Security Council senior director Dr. Fiona Hill won an outpouring of support for her powerful testimony slamming sexist double standards.
  • In particular, Hill testified to how officials, including Gordon Sondland, the US Ambassador to the European Union, completely circumvented and sidestepped her. 
  • "I was actually, to be honest, angry with him. And I hate to say it, but often when women show anger it's not fully appreciated. It's often pushed off onto emotional issues, perhaps, or deflected on other people," Hill said of confronting Sondland.
  • Hill's measured, confident demeanor before the committee and her powerful testimony of being pushed aside and outflanked by a far less qualified male diplomat resonated with women all across the internet.
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At a Thursday hearing in the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, former National Security Council senior director Dr. Fiona Hill won an outpouring of support for her powerful testimony slamming sexist double standards.

Hill, one of the nation's leading experts on Russian and Eastern European issues, left the White House on July 19 and testified to the efforts of certain members of the Trump administration to leverage the release of a $400 million military aid package to Ukraine in exchange for the Ukrainian government announcing investigations that would be favorable to Trump. 

In particular, Hill testified to how officials including Gordon Sondland, the US Ambassador to the European Union, completely circumvented the established interagency processes for conducting diplomacy with Ukraine, and got in the way of the NSC's efforts, sidestepping the Council completely and leaving its staff in the dark.

While Hill holds multiple degrees in foreign affairs and history from Harvard University and has worked on Russian and Eastern European issues for decades, Sondland is a wealthy hotel executive who has no significant diplomatic experience and was appointed to his position in 2018 after donating $1 million to Trump's inaugural committee.

Hill recounted how in a July 10 meeting at the White House, she had to intercept Sondland and make clear to him there should be no discussion of investigations with Ukrainian officials without first going through the proper diplomatic channels.

"I was actually, to be honest, angry with him. And I hate to say it but often when women show anger it's not fully appreciated, it's often pushed off onto emotional issues, perhaps, or deflected on other people," Hill said of confronting Sondland. 

Both Hill's measured, confident demeanor before the committee and her powerful testimony of being pushed aside and outflanked by a far less qualified male diplomat resonated with women all across the Internet, who tweeted their support for Hill and made her name a trending topic. 

Later in her testimony, Hill said she believed the smear campaign and eventual ouster of former US ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanotich were also motivated by sexism, and Yovanovitch's gender made her a target for attacks. 

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