House Oversight Committee Announces Thursday Kushner Investigation

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For anyone keeping track: saying that not all Muslims were responsible for the events of 9/11 is “bad for our country,” but the transfer of highly sensitive nuclear tech to the country from which 15 of the 9/11 terrorists came is patriotic and good policy. Such is the upside-down world of President Donald Trump.

On Thursday, the House Oversight Committee announced an investigation into whistleblower accounts that members of the Trump administration, including White House advisor Jared Kushner and former White House Security Advisor Michael Flynn attempted those transfers illegally and in secret.

In a letter to the White House, the committee stated that:

‘The whistleblowers who came forward have expressed significant concerns about the potential procedural and legal violations connected with rushing through a plan to transfer nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia.  They have warned of conflicts of interest among top White House advisers that could implicate federal criminal statutes.  They have also warned about a working environment inside the White House marked by chaos, dysfunction, and backbiting.  And they have warned about political appointees ignoring directives from top ethics advisors at the White House who repeatedly and unsuccessfully ordered senior Trump Administration officials to halt their efforts’

Numerous instances of shady behavior on the part of Trump and his administrators are already public knowledge. Trump, after all, refused to react to a foreign government responsible for earlier attacks against the United States and its allies when they murdered American resident and Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi. At the time, Trump gave the excuse that he didn’t want to give up all the money that the Saudis spend on military contracts, which is alarming enough on its own. Whistleblowers indicate that the reasons may be much more sinister than that.

‘The Committee’s investigation is particularly critical because the Administration’s efforts to transfer sensitive U.S. nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia appear to be ongoing.  On February 12, 2019, the President met with nuclear power developers at the White House about sharing nuclear technology with countries in the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia.  In addition, next week Mr. Kushner will be embarking on a tour of Middle Eastern capitals—including Riyadh—to discuss the economic portion of the Administration’s Middle East peace plan.’

Democrats are not the only members of Congress concerned about these reports. Republican lawmakers have also written letters to the Trump administration warning of the dangers of any transfer of nuclear tech to Saudi Arabia.

‘The report indicates that there is now serious, bipartisan concern with the Trump Administration’s efforts to transfer sensitive U.S. nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia.  For example, on October 31, 2018, Republican Senators Marco Rubio, Todd Young, Cory Gardner, Rand Paul, and Dean Heller sent a letter to President Trump urging him to “suspend talks related to a potential civil nuclear cooperation agreement between the United States and Saudi Arabia” due to “serious concerns about the transparency, accountability, and judgment of current decisionmakers in Saudi Arabia.”’

In addition to what is already known, the investigation intends to uncover documents that have not yet been released to them.

‘The report describes new documents and communications between White House officials, including former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, former Deputy National Security Advisor K.T. McFarland, and former NSC Senior Director for Middle East and North African Affairs Derek Harvey, as well as with Thomas Barrack, President Trump’s personal friend of several decades and the Chairman of his Inaugural Committee, and Rick Gates, President Trump’s former Deputy Campaign Manager and Deputy Chairman of the Inaugural Committee who has now pleaded guilty to financial fraud and lying to investigators.’

Featured image via Flickr by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under a Creative Commons license