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After President John F. Kennedy appointed his brother as Attorney General, Republicans freaked out and passed an anti-nepotism law against presidents hiring family members.

After Kushner met in secret with MBS, America's ally and the ruler of Saudi Arabia MBN was arrested and thrown into prison where he remains to this day.

When Donald Trump put Jared Kushner into the White House (even after he failed a security clearance), his Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel ruled, essentially, that Trump could ignore the law.

Saudi Arabia was then run by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef (MBN), the grandson of the nation's founder, King Abdulaziz; MBN's father, Nayef bin Abdulaziz, had run the country before him.

Like his father and grandfather, MBN was tight with US intelligence agencies and committed to a stable long-term relationship with the United States and Europe.

When Trump came into office in 2017, MBN's cousin, Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) was merely one of many Saudi princes jockeying for position and power in the kingdom.

At the time Trump appointed Kushner in 2017, US intelligence and the State Department were concerned that if MBS were to overthrow MBN the consequences could be unpredictable for the United States. Kushner, with his new security clearance in hand, would have had access to that information.

Things were getting wild in the kingdom.

MBS wanted to overthrow MBN, and, according to some extraordinary reporting from Vicki Ward (who's Substack newsletter is worth subscribing to), Jared saw an opportunity to go around US interests and help MBS overthrow and imprison his cousin so MBS could seize control of the Kingdom and its more than $700 billion:

"Four well-placed sources," she reports, "say that the primary reason Kushner has now received $2 billion is that he helped MBS depose MBN, knowing that this went directly against what U.S. intelligence wanted or thought was good for national security. (Kushner has always said he did not give U.S. intelligence to the Saudis.)"

Suddenly, the news was full of stories about members of the Saudi royal family who were being held by security forces in fancy hotels, some being tortured and a few even "vanished."

After Kushner met in secret with MBS, America's ally and the ruler of Saudi Arabia MBN was arrested and thrown into prison where he remains to this day.

As a result, Jared's buddy MBS now runs the kingdom and controls its money.

David Ignatius of the Washington Post noted a few weeks after MBS began arresting his royal political foes, apparently using information from inside US intelligence agencies:

"It was probably no accident that last month, Jared Kushner, Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law, made a personal visit to Riyadh. The two princes are said to have stayed up until nearly 4 a.m. several nights, swapping stories and planning strategy."

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Did Jared sell out American interests for $2 billion?

  • It was with MBS that President Trump negotiated a 2.2 million-barrels-a-day production cut in 2020, when the pandemic had crashed demand for oil.
  • It was MBS who reportedly said he had Jared "in his pocket."
  • It was MBS who reportedly had Washington Post writer Jamal Khashoggi murdered and dismembered by an assassination squad when visiting a Saudi embassy to get a visa to marry his fiancé.
  • And, the New York Times notes, it was Jared who was there for MBS when he needed a friend on the inside: "As the killing set off a firestorm around the world and American intelligence agencies concluded that it was ordered by Prince Mohammed [MBS], Mr. Kushner became the prince's most important defender inside the White House…"
  • It's MBS who The Wall Street Journal reports is now moving his country "closer" to Russia and China to "punish" President Joe Biden.
  • It's also MBS who's today refusing to take President Biden's calls about restoring that oil production, which would reduce oil prices and relieve much of the political pressure now on Biden and Democrats as we head toward the 2022 and 2024 elections.

Have we all been witnessing a young con-man walk away with billions after selling out Yemen, Khashoggi, and the United States? With virtually no questions from the mainstream media or Congress?

The son of a professional grifter (Charles Kushner, who was pardoned by Trump) and a minor slumlord, Jared is said to have gotten advice from a PR professional when his father went to prison. Ben Walsh noted for Huffington Post that Jared's dad tells the story that his PR friend advised Jared:

"Step one: Buy a New York newspaper. Don't be too particular…. Any newspaper will do. Step two: Buy a big Manhattan building. Any building will do. Step three: Marry the daughter of a rich New York family. Anyone will do."

Jared, the story goes, then purchased the New York Observer newspaper, overpaid for the 666 Fifth Avenue office building just down the street from Trump Tower, and, now impressively credentialed as a Serious Guy, hooked up with Donald Trump's daughter, Ivanka.

From there it was a straight shot to the White House and then cashing in with $2 billion from Saudi Arabia, authorized by MBS, who had to override his investment advisors to hand the cash to Jared.

Which is a crime.

Our Constitution contains two emoluments clauses, both forbidding officials from taking gifts from foreign governments. The most well-known one (in Article II) forbids presidents from taking what could be bribes; the second, from Article I of the Constitution, forbids such behavior by anybody working in the federal government without the explicit permission of Congress:

"[N]o Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under [the United States], shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State."

As the Congressional Research Service (CRS) notes:

"The purpose of the Foreign Emoluments Clause is to prevent corruption and limit foreign influence on federal officers. The Clause grew out of the Framers' experience with the European custom of gift-giving to foreign diplomats, which the Articles of Confederation prohibited. Following that precedent, the Foreign Emoluments Clause prohibits federal officers from accepting foreign emoluments without congressional consent."

History will tell us if Jared Kushner sold out his country and damaged prospects for peace in the world by helping MBS rise to power and then push Saudi Arabia toward Russia, just to get his hands on a few billion dollars.

But that history is being written today, and if there was ever a scandal more worthy of a DOJ and congressional investigation than Benghazi or Hillary's emails, this is it.

Common Dreams