by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
John Schindler writes for the Washington Examiner about a Biden scandal that’s been flying under congressional Republicans’ radar.
Republicans seem not to have noticed one major foreign policy scandal that’s hiding in plain sight. …
… [T]he rising scandal surrounding retired FBI senior official Charles McGonigal is perhaps the worst in the bureau’s history. Multiple sources have told me that McGonigal, while still serving with the FBI as head of counterintelligence in New York, shook down Balkan business people, most of them Albanian, in an audacious political corruption scheme worth many millions of dollars.
McGonigal apparently pulled off this unprecedented scam in collaboration with Albania’s Prime Minister Edi Rama, whose Socialist Party has ruled that small country for a decade. Contrary to Rama’s carefully cultivated image as a pro-American NATO stalwart and even corruption fighter, during his rule, Albania has in fact become the leading narco-state in Europe. As the Washington Examiner has reported, Rama’s Albania has grown into an analog to Manuel Noriega’s Panama in the 1980s. For whatever reason, the Biden administration doesn’t appear to care.
Now others are starting to notice.
This week, the Financial Times reported on Rama’s misguided governance, dropping subtle hints of troubling events behind the scenes, noting that “Rama’s reputation overseas has also been tainted by his contacts with a disgraced U.S. law enforcement official,” i.e., McGonigal, “accused of having helped the Albanian leader persecute political rivals.” The outlet gently noted that many average Albanians “believe the government co-operates with drug traffickers.
Yes, they do. And people should start asking why Washington goes out of its way to defend Rama’s narco-friendly government against its critics.
The drug running isn’t the worst of it. Albania is a U.S. ally and valued NATO member, yet the Biden administration has repeatedly interfered in the internal politics of a friend and ally for reasons that are difficult to decipher.