We can have no '50-50' allegiance in this country. Either a man is an American and nothing else, or he is not an American at all. ~~ Theodore Roosevelt
The Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) is a United States law passed in 1938 requiring that agents representing the interests of foreign powers in a "political or quasi-political capacity" disclose their relationship with the foreign government and information about related activities and finances. Members of our U.S. congress and their staff as well as those occupying high positions in the various cabinets and think tanks, have enriched themselves off American largess leaving America in shambles. Those members of congress should be required to register as foreign agents so American voters know to whom and where their loyalty lies before we allow them to write and enforce our laws.
Those unregistered foreign agents in congress have passed laws that conflict with American interests and benefit foreign nations. Every war that has been waged since the overthrow of the American government in 2000 have been launched for the benefit of the right wing genocidal government of Israel and detrimental to America. Those same members of congress were elected after they pledged their allegiance to AIPAC, The America Israeli Public Affairs Committee. So it is natural to ask “should AIPAC be required to register as a foreign agent?” From The American Conservative:
Should AIPAC Register as a Foreign Agent?
Pro-Israel organization should not get a pass.
Last week the Senate Judiciary Committee postponed a meeting ostensibly convened to discuss the failure to enforce the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938 (FARA). Originally rescheduled for this week, the postponed meeting would have featured Donald Trump Jr. and former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort testifying about their controversial Trump Tower meeting, but their subpoenas were canceled at the last minute after they arranged to turn over documents…
The Judiciary Committee hearing was originally set up to look at the possible Russian links of former journalist and head of the research firm Fusion GPS Glenn Simpson, who was behind the infamous Trump dossier that appeared in January…
FARA was created in the lead up to World War II to help monitor the activity of Italian, German and Japanese agent-lobbyists who were believed to be working hard in the U.S. to influence opinion as well as congressional votes in favor of their respective sponsoring nations. The intention was to force the “foreign agents” to register with the Department of the Treasury so they would have to identify their government sponsors and be required to reveal their sources of income…
Ironically, the most powerful and effective foreign-government lobby in Washington is so dominant that it has been able to avoid registering for the past 55 years. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) was last confronted by FARA when its predecessor organization the American Zionist Council was pressured by John F. Kennedy’s Justice Department in 1962 and 1963. Kennedy’s death stopped that effort—and ended White House attempts to hold Israel accountable for the development of its secret nuclear weapons program (which depended on nuclear material removed illegally from the United States with the connivance of a company located in Pennsylvania called NUMEC).
AIPAC’s website declares that it is “America’s Pro-Israel Lobby,” so by its own admission it functions pretty clearly as Israel’s proxy. It spent $102 million in 2015, had 396 employees in 2013, and claims to have 100,000 members, many of whom are organized into state and city chapters. It also benefits from being a tax exempt 501(c)4 organization classified as promoting “international understanding…”
The last U.S. President to challenge the lobbying efforts by AIPAC was John F. Kennedy who was assassinated, ensuring no other President would dare confront AIPAC who enjoys tax exempt status.
Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it. ~~ Mark Twain
Our American congress is on a month-long vacation so that they may return home to face their constituents. But are members of congress meeting with their constituents? Or maybe the better question is “who are their constituents?” From Information Clearing House:
Bought and Paid For 53 Congressional Reps On All Expense Paid Trips To Israel
At least 53 Congressional representatives are on a week-long trip to Israel, paid for by the American Israel Education Foundation (AIEF), an arm of the powerful lobbying group AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee).
AIEF’s budget is approximately $80 million, which it uses to take diverse groups to Israel. More than a dozen Latino leaders from the Southwest U.S. have just returned from an AIEF funded five-day trip to Israel that ended Aug 6, and a trip for top political operatives was conducted in June.
The Tampa Bay Times reports about the Congressional trips: “AIPAC gets around restrictions on privately paid travel by using the educational arm, an arrangement government watchdogs have criticized.” “A decade ago, the House banned groups from paying for extended trips as part of the fallout from the scandal over lobbyist Jack Abramoff. But a loophole allowed educational foundations to pick up the tab. The Israel trips are estimated at $10,000 per person.
“Members of Congress feel indebted to someone who provides them with a week’s long vacation. It’s lobbying and it’s more effective than direct lobbying on Capitol Hill,” Craig Holman of the watchdog group Public Citizen, who helped draft the 2007 laws, told the Tampa Bay Times in 2013. He said the loophole has been steadily abused and privately-paid travel is back to pre-reform levels.
“This is not what lobbying should be about,” Holman said. “It should be about providing information and expertise so lawmakers can make better decisions, not trying to buy their favors with gifts and travel junkets.”
Hmmm, lobbing should not be about “trying to buy favors with gifts and travel junkets” and yet that is exactly what is being done by these unregistered foreign agents. Time and again the unregistered foreign agents in our congress reward those who pay for those perks. From The Independent:
45 senators support bill that makes boycotting Israel a crime
A bill that would criminalise boycotts against Israel has been signed by 45 US senators and 237 congressman. The so-called “Israel Anti-Boycott Act” would impose fines of up to $250,000 (£192,000) on any US citizen “engaged in interstate or foreign commerce” who supports a boycott of Israeli goods and services.
However, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has argued that the bill would “impose civil and criminal punishment on individuals solely because of their political beliefs about Israel and its policies”, in a letter sent to members of the Senate. “In short, the bill would punish businesses and individuals solely based on their point of view,” it wrote. “Such a penalty is in direct violation of the First Amendment…”
Still, the bill – reportedly drafted with the help of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) – has received widespread bipartisan support…
Even liberal-leaning senators like Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and Maria Cantwell of Washington, and representatives like Adam Schiff of Massachusetts, have signed on to the legislation. Conservatives like Senators Ted Cruz of Texas and Marco Rubio of Florida also support it.
Not all of congressional unregistered foreign agents went to Israel on an all-expenses paid vacation, some remained at home and faced the scorn of the American people. From TheIntercept:
SENATORS PROMISE TO AMEND ISRAEL BOYCOTT BILL AFTER BACKLASH
THE LEAD AUTHOR of the controversial Israel Anti-Boycott Act, Democratic Sen. Ben Cardin of Maryland, is open to amending the legislation to address concerns raised by the American Civil Liberties Union, he told The Intercept Monday evening.
The ACLU warned last week that the measure, which targets the BDS movement, was unconstitutional and would have a chilling effect on free speech. In the wake of that warning, and a subsequent article by The Intercept, co-sponsors of the bill have begun to re-examine their support for it.
Cardin said that the ACLU had misinterpreted his legislation, but if it needed to be clarified, he would take the steps to do so. “A lot of the co-sponsors are pretty strongly committed to the freedom of speech,” Cardin said. “We’re certainly sensitive to the issues they raise. If we have to make it clearer, we’ll make it clearer…”
One issue of contention is whether criminal penalties such as a 20-year prison sentence would apply to those who violate the law…
On Monday night, in an op-ed in the Washington Post, two top officials at the ACLU stood by their legal interpretation. “Violations would be punishable by civil and criminal penalties of up to $1 million and 20 years in prison,” write David Cole and Faiz Shakir, the ACLU’s legal and political directors, respectively…
“We thought we only dealt with civil penalties, not criminal penalties,” Cardin told The Intercept… If the bill were amended to clarify that no criminal penalties could be applied, violators would still face a $250,000 civil fine or more...
Co-sponsors of the bill have faced pressure at home to explain support for a bill with such language in it. Rep. Joe Kennedy III, D-Mass., is reviewing the bill in the light of the ACLU’s concerns, as are Democratic Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Maria Cantwell of Washington, Ron Wyden of Oregon, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut.
Well isn’t that special, our unregistered foreign agents in congress didn’t understand what was in the AIPAC written bill before they passed it. The tragic part of this is that it’s not just Israel, they put the interests of other nations before America all the time. You might say that our congress is for sale to the highest bidder.
After accepting lavish gifts and trips, congress has stripped our public schools of funds to endow Turkish terrorist Fathullah Gülen with H1B visas to man his American taxpayer funded charter schools across America. ~~ Down the Rabbit Hole
When reading about the AIPAC all-expenses paid trip to Israel that members of congress are taking on their August vacation it brought to mind another foreign based group that paid for all-expenses paid trips that resulted in a deluge of H1B visas in return for the perks. From USA Today:
Turkish faith movement secretly funded 200 trips for lawmakers and staff
A Turkish religious movement has secretly funded as many as 200 trips to Turkey for members of Congress and staff since 2008, apparently repeatedly violating House rules and possibly federal law, a USA TODAY investigation has found.
The group — a worldwide moderate Islamic movement led by a religious scholar named Fethullah Gülen… A dozen different Gülen groups have sponsored congressional travel since 2008 and have filed forms with the House certifying that they were paying for the trips. The House Ethics Committee approved all the trips in advance based on the forms the Gülen groups submitted…
Congressional disclosures show the Gülen-backed trips totaled more than $800,000 in free travel for lawmakers and staff. That number likely underestimates the costs since many of the in-country expenses were not reported…
One Gülen group, the Texas-based Turquoise Council of Americans and Eurasians, sponsored trips for three lawmakers and seven staff members in 2011, filing disclosures claiming it was the sole sponsor of the trips at a total cost of about $54,000. But the same organization filed an IRS tax form that year claiming it spent only $33,000 on travel with no expenditures for the travel of public officials.
In August 2013, Rep. Mike Honda, D-Calif., took an eight-day trip to Turkey sponsored by the Pacifica Institute, which claimed on congressional disclosure forms to be an IRS-recognized non-profit covering the $5,700 cost of the trip. But the IRS has no record of Pacifica being a recognized non-profit…
The House Office of Congressional Ethics issued a report earlier this month finding that BAKIAD had secretly funded the Turkish leg of a trip to Azerbaijan taken by 10 members of Congress and 32 staff…
In June 2012, a Gülen organization called the Istanbul Center sponsored a nine-day, four-city Turkish visit for Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., his wife, Martha, and four staff members for a total of about $23,000…
USA TODAY identified 214 congressional trips sponsored by Gülen organizations that appear to be improperly disclosed…
And the movement has clearly benefited from making friends in Congress.
In February 2015, Rep. Matt Salmon, R-Ariz., organized colleagues to send a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry seeking his help in defending Gülenist journalists who had been arrested by the Turkish government as part of the battle between Gülen and Erdogan…
Salmon had taken a Gülen-funded trip to Turkey in 2014; Honda, Brooks and five other lawmakers who had taken Gülen-funded trips also signed the letter, as did 23 members who had approved Gülen-backed trips for their staff…
My, my. Yes, our unregistered foreign agents in our government, do not abide by any of the laws they pass. And, while the movement benefitted from their bribes in getting congress to intervene with the Secretary of State on Gulen’s behalf, that is just a drop in the bucket of what Gulen received from congress. From Center for Immigration Studies.
Are the H-1B-Using Gulen Charter Schools About to Face Hard Times?
Off in a small corner of the immigration policy world there is an intriguing side-show – it is a battle which pits one group of conservatives against another in a fascinating contest that the mainstream media has all but ignored.
In one corner there is a player as reactionary as they come, the Islamic president/dictator of Turkey; in the other is a conservative Islamic religious leader, another Turk, and his allies in the American charter school movement…
Gulen's followers in the U.S. have created a series of charter schools which use public school moneys, via staff extortions, to support the cult's activities. The Gulen schools, which have also used political contributions to shore up their position, are charters, and, as such, are sheltered by conservatives promoting charters generally…
In spite of the presence of tens, perhaps hundreds, of thousands of unemployed U.S.-trained teachers, Gulen's schools continue to use local tax funds to secure H-1B visas for, and to provide wages for, teachers from Turkey, including in a few cases English teachers, as we have reported previously.
Why are the Gulen schools so interested in recruiting Turkish teachers (and often paying them more than U.S. teachers in the same schools)? To some extent it is a Tammany Hall sort of nepotism – let's use public funds to help our landsmen – but there is another apparent motive. According to a long, detailed, and stinging report by LA Weekly, there is a highly organized, systematic shake-down of Turkish teachers to benefit Gulen cult organizations…
Here you have members of congress engorging Fathullah Gulen with H1B visas to supply teachers from Turkey to teach in his American taxpayer funded charter schools. While thousands of American teachers are unemployed, the Turkish teachers are paid more than American teachers because they have to pay a kickbacks to Gulen to fund his cult organizations with American taxpayer dollars.
Congress, in their furor to remove Donald Trump from office planned to charge Donald Jr. and Paul Manafort for being in violation of the Foreign Agent Registration Act. What a joke. But this is all connected because Donald Trump along with General Flynn were about to shut down the Gulen gravy train.
According to the previous article:
All of this may be about to change because of one of President-elect Trump's appointments. According to the Daily Caller:
An intelligence consulting firm founded by retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, Donald Trump's top military adviser, was recently hired as a lobbyist by an obscure Dutch company with ties to Turkey's government and its president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Further, we know that President Erdogan has joined Donald Trump at one or more hotel opening ceremonies in Turkey; this was well before the presidential campaign. So Gen. Flynn, who is known to be opposed to Gulen, and who is soon to be the National Security Adviser to the President, might well let it be known in government circles that he has no opposition at all to Gulen school administrators being indicted.
That, combined with the wealth of evidence on these schools' finances, might just change matters.
Well, well, well. Now we know why General Flynn had to go. Not only was he a threat to the Gulen terror network, he was a threat to the unregistered foreign agents in our government who seek to destroy the American people while they enrich themselves.
The Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) is a United States law passed in 1938 requiring that agents representing the interests of foreign powers in a "political or quasi-political capacity" disclose their relationship with the foreign government and information about related activities and finances.
According to FARA our entire government is in violation of the FARA laws. President Trump, fire H.R. McMaster and restore General Flynn. Don’t stop there, fire Mike Pompeo, fire Jeff Sessions, fire FBI Director McCaul and drain the swamp. But most importantly Revolt America! Stand behind your president demand the cabinet resign and Trump restore his original picks.
By Patricia Baeten