by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
More foreign influence peddling is alleged to be ocurring in Washington DC. Anne Applebaum writes, “three Iran experts who have worked closely with Robert Malley, the Biden administration’s special envoy on Iran, were members of an influence network formed and guided by Tehran”. The Atlantic says:
“According to reports by Semafor and Iran International, Iranian foreign-policy bigwigs such as Mohammad Javad Zarif identified think-tank staffers of Iranian origin, sponsored meetings with them, and used the group to coordinate and spread messages helpful to Iran. …
“A few of them ended up in and near positions of prominence in the U.S. government through connections to Robert Malley, a veteran Middle East hand in Democratic administrations.” …
… This follows reports that “the FBI is investigating whether Egypt’s intelligence services might have been involved in the alleged bribery scheme described in the indictment of Sen. Bob Menendez and his wife”. Recently ABC News reported that a congressional panel “obtained bank records showing Hunter Biden received wires originating from Beijing that listed Joe Biden’s Wilmington, Delaware, home as the beneficiary address”.
Republicans in both the House and Senate on Tuesday called for an investigation of the alleged Tehran-backed influence operation believed to have placed several of its protégés in the Biden administration, including officials close to Iran envoy Robert Malley. “The communications reveal the access Rouhani’s diplomats have had to Washington’s and Europe’s policy circles, particularly during the final years of the Obama administration, through this network,” according to published reports.
Menendez was supposed to be working for Egypt and the recent influence peddlers alleged to be operating for Iran. But Iran and Egypt are bit players. Missing from the board are the big boys, China, Russia and the Kingdom, of which nothing has yet been publicly disclosed.