Could it be more embarrassing?
, the hawkish, pro-Israel California Democrat, tells a suspected Israeli spy that she’ll do what she can to quash an espionage trial for two former officials of the
American Israel Public Affairs Committee
(AIPAC) and then ends the conversation with the 24-ish: “This conversation doesn’t exist.” But it does. And it’s been caught on tape by a court-sanctioned, legal
wiretap that got leaked to and published by Congressional Quarterly‘s
About four years ago, the FBI and the Justice Department began investigating Harman. The charge? That she’d told AIPAC she would help kill the indictment of the ex-AIPAC officials,
, if AIPAC would help her get appointed as chair of the House Intelligence Committee.
According to Stein, the FBI investigation of Harman was halted by none other than
, who did Harman a favor in order to secure her support for the illegal, warrantless NSA surveillance program. In particular, Gonzales wanted Harman to help suppress a New York Times report on the program. Harman denies any wrongdoing, and exactly what she did–whether she intervened with the Justice Department on behalf of Rosen and Weissman, whether she talked to the Bush White House, and what she did vis-à-vis the Times on behalf of Gonzales– is murky, though the Times does report that she called the paper’s Washington bureau chief and urged him not to run the story. Mixed up in all of it is
, the billionaire mogul and Democratic funder, who reportedly lobbied Harman to kill the AIPAC investigation.
It’s messy, and like anything involving the Israel lobby, politicians don’t want to touch it with a ten-foot pole. But the whole thing–Harman, Saban, AIPAC, Rosen and Weissman, Gonzales, etc.–needs a thorough investigation. ROBERT DREYFUSS
HUGO’S BOOK CLUB:
The jury may be out on Chavismo as a political ideology, but there can be no doubt of
‘s salutary impact on the beleaguered world of book publishing. After the Venezuelan president gifted
with a copy of
‘s Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent, the book, first published in 1971, shot up to No. 2 on
‘s bestseller list. In 2006, Chávez mentioned
‘s Hegemony or Survival in a speech at the United Nations, promptly sending Chomsky to Amazon’s top spot.
is publishing Galeano’s Mirrors: Stories of Almost Everyone in June–a month in which UN Secretary General
celebrates a birthday (hint, hint).