Bush/Cheney Trade with
Bush Appoints Bank Exec who Financed Iraq,
Iran and Cuba as Homeland Security Council Chairman.
of the nation's Homeland Security Advisory Council was helping to
guide America's security strategy at the
same time he was a top executive
[Chairman and CEO, UBS PaineWebber, USA] with an international banking
firm that was investigated and eventually fined more than $100 million
for cash transfers to rogue nations, including Iraq, Iran, Libya and
Cuba. . .With access to intelligence and other sensitive security
information, Grano's panel has been urged to analyze all of the
nation's Homeland Security efforts. . . .At the council's first
meeting in June 2002, Bush sat next to Grano and praised the
government's efforts to stop international money laundering to terror
groups. . . Authorities later discovered phony records and a cover-up
scheme by UBS officials in its main Zurich office, concealing up to $5
billion that was sent from UBS to Iran, Libya. . .from 1996 to 2003, .
. .In January  . . .Grano stepped down from UBS
Maier, Newsday, 10/15/04
Halluburton Traded with Iraq While
Cheney was CEO
During last year's presidential campaign,
Richard B. Cheney acknowledged that the oil-field supply corporation
he headed, Halliburton Co., did business with Libya and Iran through
foreign subsidiaries. But he insisted that he had imposed a "firm
policy" against trading with Iraq.
"Iraq's different," he said.
According to oil industry executives and confidential United Nations
records, however, Halliburton held stakes in two firms that signed
contracts to sell more than $73 million in oil production equipment
and spare parts to Iraq while Cheney was chairman and chief executive
officer of the Dallas-based company.
Two former senior executives of the Halliburton subsidiaries say that,
as far as they knew, there was no policy against doing business with
Iraq. One of the executives also says that although he never spoke
directly to Cheney about the Iraqi contracts, he is certain Cheney
knew about them.
Colum Lynch, Washington
Halliburton Traded with Iran While
Cheney was CEO
Halliburton is the company that
Vice President Dick Cheney used to run. He was CEO in
1995 to 2000, during which time Halliburton Products
and Services set up shop in Iran. Today, it sells about $40 million a
year worth of oil field services to the Iranian Government.
60 Minutes, 1/25/04. UPDATE:
oil services company [Halliburton] said it had received a letter from
the US treasury department, informing it that an inquiry into
allegations that Halliburton might have broken trade embargoes had
The investigation relates to when Mr. Cheney was running the company.
He was chief executive between 1995 and 2000 before quitting to run
for office with George Bush, taking with him a $36m (£19m) severance
& Gonzales *
Once the New
York newspapers began digging, it became clear that Mr. Kerik is,
professionally and personally, a real piece of work.. . .
And Alberto Gonzales must be hoping that senators don't bring up the
subject. The principal objection to making Mr. Gonzales attorney
general is that doing so will tell the world that America thinks it's
acceptable to torture people. But his confirmation will also be a
statement about ethics. As White House counsel, Mr. Gonzales was
charged with vetting Mr. Kerik. He must have realized what kind of man
he was dealing with - yet he declared Mr. Kerik fit to oversee
homeland security. Did Mr. Gonzales defer to the wishes of a
president who wanted Mr. Kerik anyway, or did he decide that his boss
wouldn't want to know? (The Nelson Report,. . .reports that Mr. Bush
has made it clear to his subordinates that he doesn't want to hear bad
news about Iraq.).
Sleaze among Bush's Friends*
dealings of Jack Abramoff, a Republican power lobbyist, and Michael
Scanlon, Mr. DeLay's former spokesman, are coming to light as Senate
and Justice Department investigators follow leads from nouveau-riche
tribes . . .Even as the two fast-talking political brokers banked
large profits for three years of minimal labor, it was found, they
were exchanging gleeful private messages mocking tribal leaders as
"morons," "troglodytes" and "monkeys." "I want all their MONEY!!!" Mr.
Scanlon exuberantly e-mailed in the midst of one deal. . . Mr.
Abramoff was found to have prodded the tribes to pay for his luxury
skyboxes at Washington sports arenas. . . so he could impress Capitol
politicians, staff members and fund-raisers . . . A colleague
pronounced Mr. Abramoff a master of schmooze, but sleaze seems a far
NY Times Editorial 1/1/05
Chooses Profits from Heart Attacks *
Furberg, a member of the FDA's drug safety advisory committee, was
told Thursday that an invitation to participate in the panel's key
February meeting had to be rescinded because of an "intellectual
conflict of interest." Furberg, an acknowledged expert on
assessing the risks of drug side effects, had commented earlier this
week on an analysis he had just completed on possible cardiovascular
risks from the arthritis drug Bextra. The drug is a COX-2 inhibitor
such as Vioxx, which Merck & Co. took off the market in September
because of a study showing that it increased the risk of heart attacks
and strokes. . . "I think they're trying to control criticism at the
[Furberg] said. Marc
Kaufman, Washington Post, 11/13/04
Reconstruction or Corruption*
close, reconstruction in Iraq looks less like a mission of mercy or a
sophisticated pacification program and more like a criminal racket. .
. "Bechtel got angry at me when I talked to Azzaman," he says,
referring to a major Iraqi newspaper. "We were supposed to be back on
line in June, then September. Now it's January. Every day we send
untreated sewage into the river, thousands of people downstream become
sick." He pauses. "This work is more important than schools. . . .This
is about preventing problems." . . ."You need to have the people who
spent twenty years running these irrigation canals or power plants to
be there. They know the tricks; they know the quirks. But the foreign
contracts ignore Iraqis, and as a result they get nowhere!" . .
."Living near a river of shit--that would definitely suck," says [a
GI] "No wonder these people are pissed."
Christian Parenti, The
Bush, House of Saud: The Secret Relationship Between the World's Two
Most Powerful Dynasties
Insider Trading *
Jordan became Bush's attorney long before Bush became president. As a
corporate defense lawyer in the Houston law firm of Baker Botts
("Baker" as in James Baker, George H.W. Bush's close friend and
secretary of state), Jordan personally represented the younger Bush in
1991-93. The Securities and Exchange Commission was investigating Bush
on insider-trading violations involving stock of his company, Harken
Energy. Jordan's obstructive tactics in that case are noteworthy. One
key Harken memo in Jordan's hands would have gone far toward
establishing Bush's guilty intent. Disobeying rightful SEC demands for
documents, however, Jordan withheld this memo from the SEC until the
week after the SEC sent its 1993 letter suspending the case,
Tiefer, Salon, 7/23/04
Enron, Delay & Election Theft*
[Washington] Post says it has "at least a dozen" documents showing
that Mr. DeLay and his associates directed money from corporate donors
and lobbyists to an effort to win control of the Texas Legislature . .
. Enron. . .was happy to oblige, especially because Mr. DeLay was
helping the firm's effort to secure energy deregulation legislation,
even as . . . they were rigging California's deregulated market and
stealing millions each day. . .
however, one problem: a 100-year-old Texas law bars corporate
financing of State Legislature campaigns. . . .Mr. DeLay has hired two
criminal defense lawyers.
.The larger picture is this: Mr. DeLay and his fellow hard-liners, . .
. have forged an immensely effective alliance with corporate
interests. And they may be just one election away from achieving a
long-term lock on power.
Krugman, NY Times
Just last week
Baker said, "I fixed the election in Florida for George Bush.". . . .our
President isn't going to let something as meaningless as international
law stand in the way of a quick buck for Mr. Baker. To get around the
wee issue that Bush has no legal authority to mess with Iraq's debt, the
White House has crafted a neat little subterfuge. . . Much of the
so-called debt to Saudi Arabia was given to Saddam Hussein to fight a
proxy war for the Saudis against their hated foe, the Shi'ia of Iran. .
. .the kingdom's sheiks handed about $7 billion to Saddam under the
table in the 1980's to build an "Islamic bomb." . . . .
Bush has rushed Baker in to pre-empt
the debt write-off the World Bank would have certainly promoted.
Palast, Working for Change, 12/9/03
Baker, the Carlyle
Group and Saudi Clients*
officials said Mr. Baker would retain his positions at
Baker Botts and the Carlyle Group while serving as the president's personal
envoy, and added that he had been vetted by the White House counsel's office
for potential conflicts of interest.
The Carlyle Group, which has $17.5 billion in gross
assets under management, invests money for 550 investors in 55 countries,
and has investors in the Middle East. It has no investors or investments in
Chris Ullman, a Carlyle spokesman, said Mr. Baker had
not personally raised money from overseas investors, and therefore would not
be in the position of negotiating with his business clients on behalf of the
White House. But Mr. Ullman said Mr. Baker did speak at Carlyle events
intended to attract investors. ELISABETH
BUMILLER, NY Times, 12/12/03
Bush Brother and
Friends Profit at New Bridge Strategies
in setting up New Bridge Strategies, a well-connected
Washington firm designed to help clients win contracts in Iraq, have
previously used an association with the younger brother of President George
W. Bush to seek business in the Middle East, an FT investigation has found.
New Bridge was established in May and came to public
attention because of the Republican heavyweights on its board - most linked
to one or other Bush administration or the to family itself. Those include
Joe Allbaugh, George W. Bush's presidential campaign manager, and Ed Rogers
and Lanny Griffith, former George H.W. Bush aids.
Fidler and Thomas Catán, The Financial Times, 12 /11/03
The year 1986 was very good for George W. Bush.
After a decade of striking Texas brown dust
instead of oil, his luck finally turned that year when go-for-broke Harken
Energy Corp. bought his failing oil exploration firm for stock. Four years
later the company concealed large losses just before the GOP presidential
hopeful unloaded those securities for a nice profit. That, in turn, helped
finance his stake in the Texas Rangers baseball club and catapult him into
the ranks of multimillionaires.
And it was in 1986, too, that Harken’s CEO
introduced Bush, the company’s new director and consultant—as well as son of
then-Vice President George Bush--to a little startup health-care company. He
put in a modest investment, and a few years later walked away with a
There also was a little benefit on the
side. In 1994, when Bush was running for Texas governor, and scrambling for
campaign cash, insiders in that health-care company, now known as Advance
Paradigm, contributed $23,700.
Knut Royce, The Center for Public Integrity, 4/4/03