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Published On: Thu, May 26th, 2016

Senator John McCain’s Saudi Paymasters – Wayne Madsen

john mccain john kerry saudi arabia

TND Guest Contributor:  Wayne Madsen

John McCain cannot believe the polls that show only 35 percent of his fellow Arizonan Republicans believe he is doing a good job in the US Senate. The Republican primary for McCain’s Senate seat shows him to be in real political trouble in his Republican Party contest against state Senator Kelli Ward.

McCain has mocked Ward as “Chemtraill Kelli” because she had raised questions about the US government’s activities in the area of “geo-engineering” by seeding the atmosphere with weather-altering substances.

When it comes to “conspiracies”, Ward cannot be outdone by McCain, whose non-profit institute that bears his name accepted a $1 million donation from the Saudi Arabian embassy in March of this year.

McCain was one of a few US senators to voice grave reservations over the Senate’s passage of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA), which would allow the victims of state-sponsored terrorism to sue governments involved in such acts. The legislation is clearly aimed at Saudi Arabia and the role of key members of its government in the 9/11 attacks in 2001. McCain said he feared the legislation would alienate Saudi Arabia and undermine US security alliances in the Middle East. McCain has buried his head in the Saudi sand when it comes to Saudi support for terrorists of all stripes – al-Qaeda, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the al-Nusra Front, and the Taliban factions in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

McCain has also led efforts to ensure that the Obama administration does not declassify 28 key pages from the 2002 joint congressional inquiry report on the intelligence failures that led to the 9/11 attacks. It is strongly believed that the 28 pages remain classified because they clearly implicate senior members of the Saudi government in providing support to the Arab hijackers in the United States.

In 2014, McCain actually praised one of those reportedly named in the joint congressional report as providing material assistance to the hijackers, former Saudi ambassador to the United States Prince Bandar bin Sultan. Appearing on CNN, McCain proclaimed, “Thank God for the Saudis and Prince Bandar.” Around the same time that McCain was praising the Saudis, the McCain Institute Foundation, the non-profit money fundraising arm of the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University, received a $1 million donation from the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, DC.

For Saudi Arabia, McCain is their man. As chairman of the powerful Senate Armed Services Committee, McCain is a linchpin in the sale of advanced US weaponry to the Saudis and allied Gulf states.

There is very little sunlight between McCain and the Saudis on Middle Eastern issues. McCain actively supported US military intervention in the Syrian civil war on the side of jihadist rebel forces. McCain illegally entered Syrian territory from Turkey to meet with Syrian rebel leaders, including some who were affiliated with ISIL and al-Qaeda. McCain has also praised the Saudi-led genocidal military campaign in Yemen against the Houthi rebels.

McCain actually said that Yemen would have faced an even worse fate had Saudi Arabia not intervened in its civil war. He lauded Saudi King Salman’s “efforts” in Yemen while lashing out at Syria’s President Bashar al Assad for committing “atrocities” against the Syrian people. McCain ignores the fact that the Saudis have committed a systematic campaign of genocide in Yemen, a campaign that has purposefully targeted hospitals, orphanages, crowded marketplaces, and mosques.

McCain is a strong believer that Saudi Arabia and Israel jointly secure America’s future in the Middle East. McCain essentially subscribes to the neo-conservative war hawk myth that America must stand with its problematic allies in Riyadh and Jerusalem, as well as in Turkey’s neo-Ottoman government, to ensure America’s standing in the Middle East. That stance has not only earned McCain’s «Institute» at Arizona State University a million dollars from the Saudis, but his campaign coffers have been satiated with generous contributions from such pro-Israelis as vulture fund billionaire Paul Singer and NORPAC, a notorious lobbying firm that represents Israeli government interests.

After the $1 million contribution to the McCain Institute was made public, McCain, in a typical unhinged outburst, claimed he really had nothing to do with the institute named after him. McCain knows so little about the institute that bears his name that he personally hosts an annual cookout at his Sedona, Arizona residence for those who participate in the McCain Institute’s Sedona Forum, a private conclave that has drawn in the past former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, former Secretary of State and presumptive Democratic Party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, and actress Demi Moore. McCain knows so little about his institute that in 2014, the year the institute received its million dollars from the Saudis, McCain chaired a session on the Middle East with Mrs Clinton and deputy Secretary of State William Burns.

McCain’s insistence that he has nothing to do with the McCain Institute is belied by the fact that the entity’s board of trustees is packed with McCain political cronies, including Rick Davis, the national chairman of McCain’s presidential campaigns in 2000 and 2008; Lynn Forester de Rothschild, CEO of Rothschild LLC investment company; Jeff Immelt, chairman of General Electric; former Telstra CEO Solomon Trujillo, who raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for McCain’s campaigns, much of it considered to be «dark money»; former Senator and arch-neocon Joseph Lieberman; disgraced and criminally convicted former CIA director and retired General David Petraeus; Don Brandt, the finance committee chairman for McCain’s 2016 Senate reelection campaign; and Dave Berry, Bob Diamond, Sharon Harper, all deep-pocketed members of McCain’s 2016 reelection finance committee.

The McCain institute has also received lucrative donations from corporations with vested interests in the Middle East, including Chevron and General Electric. Through the Washington-based BGR lobbying group, McCain’s “institute” has also benefited from donations from Raytheon and the Royal Saudi Center for Studies and Media Affairs.

McCain is now known as «Senator Sellout» to his Arizona constituents. McCain, however, is worse than most politicians who are «for sale». In McCain’s case, he has tailored his policies to suit those who have participated in the worst act of terrorism ever committed on American soil.

Sailors who served on board the USS Forrestal, on station in the Gulf of Tonkin in 1967 when the aircraft carrier experienced the deadliest fire on board a US Navy ship in history, claimed it was McCain performing a dangerous “wet start” of his fighter’s jet engine that caused a series of explosive chain reactions. McCain earned the nickname “Johnny Wet Start” because of his flight deck antics. Only McCain’s immediate transfer to the USS Oriskany – on the orders of his father, Admiral John McCain – saved McCain from being keelhauled by Forrestal sailors.

Some prisoners-of-war who were incarcerated with McCain in Hanoi later revealed that McCain was known as the “song bird” for singing like a canary to his North Vietnamese captors, gladly providing them with a six-month advanced schedule of American bombing runs over North Vietnam. McCain, as a senator, was one of the “Keating Five”, five US senators who accepted bribes from savings and loan owner Charles Keating in return for crafting policies that ultimately resulted in the collapse of the US savings and loan industry.

Senator “Sell Out” McCain has been a great representative in the Senate. However, he has not represented the people of Arizona, but the House of Saud, ISIL and al-Qaeda, Chevron, and every crook and gangster who has lined McCain’s pockets over several decades.

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About Wayne Madsen:

Investigative journalist, author and syndicated columnist. Has some twenty years experience in security issues. As a U.S. Naval Officer, he managed one of the first computer security programs for the U.S. Navy. He has been a frequent political and national security commentator on Fox News and has also appeared on ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera, and MS-NBC. He has been invited to testify as a witness before the US House of Representatives, the UN Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, and an terrorism investigation panel of the French government. A member of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) and the National Press Club. Lives in Washington, D.C.

This article was published at the Strategic Culture Foundation on-line journal and is reprinted with permission.

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