Friday, December 8

The Fabulous Baker Boyz: the nasty is in the details...

James Baker: Split loyalties and the prospects for Israel
From The Nation:

Until now, there has been no concrete evidence that Baker’s loyalties are split, or that his power as Special Presidential Envoy–an unpaid position–has been used to benefit any of his corporate clients or employers. But according to documents obtained by The Nation, that is precisely what has happened. Carlyle has sought to secure an extraordinary $1 billion investment from the Kuwaiti government, with Baker’s influence as debt envoy being used as a crucial lever.

The secret deal involves a complex transaction to transfer ownership of as much as $57 billion in unpaid Iraqi debts. The debts, now owed to the government of Kuwait, would be assigned to a foundation created and controlled by a consortium in which the key players are the Carlyle Group, the Albright Group (headed by another former Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright) and several other well-connected firms. Under the deal, the government of Kuwait would also give the consortium $2 billion up front to invest in a private equity fund devised by the consortium, with half of it going to Carlyle.

From The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs:
While a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq will have enormous implications for the security of the Middle East as a whole, Israel and other American regional partners should not try to second-guess this decision when it involves questions about whether the U.S. should put its soldiers in harm's way. However, the specific strategy that the Baker-Hamilton report proposes for facilitating an American pullback - the use of an international support group including Iran and Syria - poses serious problems that affect vital Israeli interests.

(H-T: Yidwithlid)

Mererhetoric has more.

Oh, what the hell - why be a stingy Jew, when we can go "whole-hog" - excuse the expression - huh, Jimbo? Here's a bucketful of links for the "Baker-impaired."

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