Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Did Hillary water down Iran sanctions because pro Iran companies paid Bill loads of money?
allegation in a new book that she watered down Iran sanctions to please a corporation that paid Bill Clinton a fortune in speaking fees.
The accusation appears in “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich,” which is due out May 5.
With an exasperated swipe at “absurd right-wing conspiracy theories,” Hillary Clinton’s campaign on Wednesday rejected the allegation in a new book that she watered down Iran sanctions to please a corporation that paid Bill Clinton a fortune in speaking fees.
The accusation appears in “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich,” which is due out May 5. Republicans hope the book will cripple her presidential bid. Democrats have underlined conservative author Peter Schweizer’s past credibility problems.
But the charges — and the Clinton team’s aggressive and systematic pushback against them — highlight once again how vulnerable the former first lady, senator, and secretary of state could prove to be to attacks centered on her family’s finances since they left the White House.
“The really troubling thing about Bill’s speeches is the apparent correlation between his fees and Hillary’s decisions during her tenure as secretary of state,” Schweizer writes.
In a chapter obtained by Yahoo News, Schweizer marshals circumstantial evidence to suggest that Sweden-based global telecommunications giant Ericsson effectively influenced Hillary to spare it from punishing economic sanctions for doing business with Iran by paying $750,000 to Bill Clinton to speak at a Nov. 12, 2011, telecom conference in Hong Kong. There is, however, no smoking gun.
“Clinton Cash” notes that Ericsson had come under pressure from the administration and Congress because the cellular communications giant makes technology, like GPS, that the Iranian regime could use to track and monitor opposition. It notes that the Obama administration, after a monthslong review, unveiled sanctions against Iran one week after Bill Clinton’s speech — sanctions that left out the telecom sector. And it points out that when Obama took aim in April 2012 at the Iranian regime’s use of high-tech equipment, he did not go after makers and sellers of that equipment, only those inside Iran and Syria who used it to hamper dissent.