Niccolò Machiavelli, often called the founder of modern political science, but best known as a purveyor of the notion that the ends justify the means, is often quoted as saying, “Politics have no relation to morals.” The Clintons would agree with him.
A new collection of emails released by Judicial Watch from a State Department Freedom of Information Act request, shows just how Machiavellian the Clintons were willing to be. For instance, one email chain appears to show Doug Band—the former “body man” to President Bill Clinton—asked then-State Department aides Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mill to “take care of” a Clinton Foundation associate as “a favor.” Judging by the response, the “favor” appears to be a job.
“We have all had him on our radar,” Abedin responded, noting that “Personnel has been sending him options.”
A second chain shows Band asking the same clinton aides for the State Department’s “substance person” in Lebanon to contact Gilbert Chagoury, a Lebanese-Nigerian billionaire who just happened to be one of the Clinton Foundation’s top donors.
“As you know, he’s key guy there and to us and is loved in Lebanon,” Band wrote in an email, adding that it was “Very imp.” Abedin responded, saying she would talk to Jeff Feltman, a former U.S. ambassador. But Band shot back: “Better if you call” Chagoury and “now preferable.
The Gilbert Chagoury rabbit hole is deep and has ties back to one of President Bill Clinton’s most controversial actions in the White House. On his last day in office, Clinton issued a full pardon for Marc Rich, a mainstay on the FBI’s Ten-Most Wanted List for his dealings with Ayatollah Khomeini’s Iran during the hostage crisis. His other notable exploits included selling oil to apartheid South Africa, Muamar Qaddafi’s Libya, Slobodan Milosevic’s Yugoslavia, Kim Il Sung’s North Korea, and helping Russian oligarchs plunder the Soviet Union.
Even Clinton-friendly media jumped on Clinton’s decision, calling it a “shocking abuse of presidential power and a reminder of why George W. Bush’s vow to restore integrity to the Oval Office resonates…” The reason for such harsh language was simple: Rich’s pardon appeared to have been bought for the price of a $1 million donation to the Democratic Party and a $450,000 gift to the Clinton Library.
That’s not the end of the trail when it came to the bribery though, and that’s where Gilbert Chagoury’s involvement becomes questionable. The New York Post reports:
Rich died in 2013. But his business partners, lawyers, advise
Little wonder then that Chagoury was receiving personalized service from the Clinton State Department, as the just-released emails (which, coincidentally were not provided to the State Department).
“That the Clinton Foundation was calling in favors barely 3 months into Hillary Clinton’s tenure at the State Department is deeply troubling, and it is yet another reminder of the conflicts of interest and unethical wheeling and dealing she’d bring to the White House,” Michael Short, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee said earlier this week.
Politics, as Clinton would say, has no relation to morals. Machiavelli would be proud.