Conflict of interest revealed by the NY Times
Martin S. Indyk, friend of Bill and Hillary Clinton, who was hired by John Kerry to mediate between Israel and the Palestinians, was “outed” by the New York Times as having a major conflict of interest. Indyk is vice-president and director of the Foreign Policy Program at the Brookings Institute which received a large donation from Qatar - a nation which funds terrorist groups, including Hamas.
Indyk has been accused of being downright nasty toward Israel in public (and even worse in private). His venom may be explained by a New York Times report that revealed that Qatar, which provides funding to ISIS and Hamas (and gives sanctuary to Hamas leaders), agreed last year to make a $14.8 million, four-year donation to Brookings. The objective of the donation is to fund a Brookings affiliate in Qatar and a project on United States' relations with the Islamic world.
"Qatar, a longtime U.S. ally, has for many years openly financed Hamas, a group that continues to undermine regional stability,” Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen told the Center for New American Security on "Confronting New Threats in Terrorist Financing" in March. “Press reports indicate that the Qatari government is also supporting extremist groups operating in Syria. To say the least, this threatens to aggravate an already volatile situation in a particularly dangerous and unwelcome manner."
Terrorist-funding Qatar is bankrolling part of Indyk's salary and based on the report was doing so while he was Middle East peace negotiator.
Scholars at other Washington think tanks, who were granted anonymity to detail confidential internal discussions, described similar experiences that had a chilling effect on their research and ability to make public statements that might offend current or future foreign sponsors. At Brookings, for example, a donor with apparent ties to the Turkish government suspended its support after a scholar there made critical statements about the country, sending a message, one scholar there said.
“It is the self-censorship that really affects us over time,” the scholar said. “But the fund-raising environment is very difficult at the moment, and Brookings keeps growing and it has to support itself.”
The sensitivities are especially important when it comes to the Qatari government — the single biggest foreign donor to Brookings.
Brookings executives cited strict internal policies that they said ensure their scholars’ work is “not influenced by the views of our funders,” in Qatar or in Washington. They also pointed to several reports published at the Brookings Doha Center in recent years that, for example, questioned the Qatari government’s efforts to revamp its education system or criticized the role it has played in supporting militants in Syria.
But in 2012, when a revised agreement was signed between Brookings and the Qatari government, the Qatar Ministry of Foreign Affairs itself praised the agreement on its website, announcing that “the center will assume its role in reflecting the bright image of Qatar in the international media, especially the American ones.” Brookings officials also acknowledged that they have regular meetings with Qatari government officials about the center’s activities and budget, and that the former Qatar prime minister sits on the center’s advisory board.
Mr. Ali, who served as one of the first visiting fellows at the Brookings Doha Center after it opened in 2009, said such a policy, though unwritten, was clear.
“There was a no-go zone when it came to criticizing the Qatari government,” said Mr. Ali, who is now a professor at the University of Queensland in Australia. “It was unsettling for the academics there. But it was the price we had to pay.”
The country funding Hamas had a direct line to influence the man who supposedly was a neutral negotiator in the Israeli/PA talks.
There is no indication that the State Department was aware of this arrangement before selecting Indyk to work on the peace talks. On the other hand Kerry was a strong supporter of getting Qatar involved in the talks with Hamas, a stance that did not make Egypt, the P.A., or Israel happy.
In the end Indyk's anti-Israel stance is not much different than other progressives (including his good friend Hillary Clinton). What is difficult to discern is which came first, the hatred of Israel, or the Qatari cash. (TruthRevolt.org)