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#81 LFC

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 12:18 PM

The Office of the Special Counsel is looking into sliminess concerning Trump and the Saudi nuclear deal.

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One of the government’s top investigative agencies has looked at allegations of potential wrongdoing by individuals in the Trump administration about their planning of a nuclear deal with Saudi Arabia, according to two individuals with knowledge of the probe.

The line of inquiry is part of a broader investigation in the Office of the Special Counsel—an independent federal investigative and prosecutorial agency—into alleged politically motivated personnel decisions at government offices.

The OSC, which can seek corrective and disciplinary action, is looking at whether officials were retaliated against for raising concerns about the administration’s work related to a Saudi nuclear deal. As part of that investigation, OSC has also reviewed allegations about potentially improper dealings by senior members of the Trump administration in their attempt to map out a nuclear deal with Riyadh, according to two sources with knowledge of OSC’s work.

The details of the OSC probe, previously unreported, are the first indication that a government body other than Congress is investigating matters related to a potential nuclear deal between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia. OSC declined to comment on the record for this story.

Meanwhile, there is a growing concern among lawmakers on Capitol Hill about U.S.-Saudi relations, especially following the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Those concerns were heightened by a report issued by Rep. Elijah Cummings in February that outlined allegations about efforts inside the White House to rush the transfer of highly sensitive U.S. nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia—a potential violation of the Atomic Energy Act and without review by Congress.

The Cummings report said IP3—a firm that includes former top military officers, diplomats, and energy experts—had developed a proposal for Saudi Arabia that was simply “a scheme for these generals to make some money.” That report said former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn had ties to the firm during his time working in the Trump administration.

Sources with direct knowledge of the IP3 plans today say the firm is focused on providing security for nuclear-related projects and in finding ways to compete with Russia and China to secure those projects throughout the Middle East.

In the wake of the Cummings announcement, The Daily Beast reported that U.S. companies and officials in the administration were moving forward in their conversations with Riyadh about a nuclear deal and the transfer of nuclear technology.


I wonder how long the House of Saud will be able to keep the crazies bottled up once they have access to nuclear material. And I wonder how long the religious crazies in Saudi Arabia are going to stay away from Israel.
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#82 JackD

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 12:36 PM

And the religious or otherwise crazies in Israel staying away from Iran. Of course their preference is for us to do it.

#83 LFC

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 09:30 AM

Russia, China, and now the U.S. are all rushing to sell nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia. Our world is f***ed.

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In the race to supply nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia, U.S. companies are playing catch-up.

Executives in the industry and American officials told The Daily Beast that despite the Trump administration pushing for a deal with Riyadh, the U.S. nuclear energy sector is behind its competitors, notably Russia and China, when it comes to developing and exporting technology for major international projects.

To get ahead, U.S. companies are mulling over whether to turn a consortium of companies—which some have dubbed “Team USA”—into one that includes foreigners, namely state-run energy firms from South Korea, in an attempt to strengthen its bid in Saudi Arabia.

If the plan comes to fruition, experts say it could offer U.S. companies a greater chance of securing contracts in Saudi Arabia and beating out Russia and China—one of the administration's main economic goals. But the possibility of such a deal has raised concerns among officials in the Trump administration that it may also limit the U.S. government’s ability to ensure Saudi Arabia adheres to certain nuclear safeguards.

The Trump administration, whose officials have publicly said they are pushing Saudi Arabia to commit to the highest standards of inspection and verification—also known as the “gold standard”—have raised the question of whether the partnership with South Korea might help American companies clinch a deal without the U.S. signing a formal cooperation deal with Saudi known as a “123 Agreement.”

The U.S. Atomic Energy Act requires the U.S. sign the 123 Agreement with countries it plans to cooperate with on nuclear energy and sets forth conditions and controls to govern nuclear commercial transactions.


That's great but remember that Trump is pushing for LESS regulation on the nuclear industry. How quickly would that roll over to his friends who are going to help him build a big, fat hotel after he's out of office?
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#84 JackD

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 09:47 AM

Well, that'll discourage the Iranians from working on a weapon.

#85 D. C. Sessions

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 01:31 PM

View PostJackD, on 15 April 2019 - 09:47 AM, said:

Well, that'll discourage the Iranians from working on a weapon.

Rhetorical question?
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#86 JackD

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 02:11 PM

Rhetorical question? No, snark.

#87 pnwguy

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Posted 24 April 2019 - 05:51 PM

If only the Dear Leader could get away with the kind of rule his friends provide

Wait until after he's re-elected in 2020
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#88 LFC

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 05:10 PM

The Saudis purchased another Republican.

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A senior Republican congressman urged fellow lawmakers to continue supporting the Saudi Arabia-led war in Yemen, by reading a Saudi lobbyist’s talking points verbatim.

Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), who chaired the House Foreign Relations Committee from 2013 until earlier this year, made speech in November 2017 warning that Iran could gain a foothold in the Arabian Gulf nation through Houthi rebels, reported The Intercept.

“Part of the problem here is the leaders of the Houthi militia were indoctrinated in Qom, in Iran, as part of an Iranian attempt to construct a Hezbollah-like proxy in Yemen,” Royce said.

That controversial line, like most of his speech, had been written by a lobbyist for Saudi Arabia.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#89 LFC

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Posted 13 May 2019 - 08:27 AM

Two Saudi oil tankers were attacked as well as several UAE cargo ships. This sounds like Bolton's perfect excuse for war even though there's absolutely no reasonable "use case" for Iran to be behind these attacks.

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Saudi Arabia said on Monday that two of its oil tankers had been sabotaged off the coast of the United Arab Emirates, in attacks it described as posing a threat to the security of global oil supplies.

Tensions have risen in the oil-rich region in recent weeks amid the deployment of a growing number of United States military assets to the Middle East due to deteriorating relations with Iran.

On Thursday, the US Maritime Administration issued an advisory warning that "Iran or its proxies" could be targeting commercial vessels and oil production infrastructure in the region.

One of the two Saudi vessels was on its way to be loaded with Saudi crude oil from the port of Ras Tanura, to be delivered to customers in the US, Saudi Arabia's state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported Monday.

While the agency didn't mention casualties or oil spills, it did say there had been "significant damage to the structures of the two vessels."

On Sunday, the UAE said that four commercial cargo ships were targeted by "sabotage operations" off its eastern coast. The apparent sabotage took place near to UAE territorial waters in the Gulf of Oman, east of the emirate of Fujairah, the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said.

It is unclear if the ships mentioned by Saudi Arabia and the UAE are part of the same incident.

The UAE ministry did not elaborate on the nature of the alleged sabotage, or offer any indication as to who might be responsible, including whether it was carried out by individuals or a larger group or country.

The UAE ministry said authorities were working with local and international bodies to investigate the incident, which it described as a "dangerous development." It said there were no injuries or deaths.

"The international community (needs to) assume its responsibilities to prevent any parties trying to undermine the security and safety of maritime traffic," the ministry said.

Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Seyyed Abbas Mousavi said on Monday that the incidents were "alarming and regrettable," and requested further information on the alleged sabotage.

The Iran spokesman warned against "plots by ill-wishers to disrupt regional security" and called for "vigilance of regional states in the face of any adventurism by foreign elements."

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer





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