Hastert did withdrawn the Armenian Genocide resolution for $ 500,000, Those who read The American Conservative has long been familiar with the saga of Sibel Edmonds. Edmonds is an FBI translator who revealed the widespread corruption throughout the government, and has received multiple orders for silence motivated by the State Secrets Act [Act status Secrets]. She still persevered even exposed to prosecution, even threatened with imprisonment. In a feature article, TAC had interviewed in 2009 and I reviewed myself the more calls she launched, particularly when the release of his book Classified Woman [A Woman Secret Classified Defence, ndt] in 2012.
While the former Speaker of the House of Representatives Dennis Hastert is preparing to plead guilty in a deal that he initiated with federal investigators, most of the media will call attention to the crimes that the FBI characterized in ‘indictment. While qu’Hastert was indicted in May, the opinion was shocked to learn that the former university instructor control spending lots of money to try to hide the sexual abuse charges against him. But one of the whistle-blowers in order did not hesitate to bring charges on the harm that Hastert was guilty for years – and the effects they may have on the federal safety.
Those who read The American Conservative has long been familiar with the saga of Sibel Edmonds. Edmonds is an FBI translator who revealed the widespread corruption throughout the government, and has received multiple orders for silence motivated by the State Secrets Act [Act status Secrets]. She still persevered even exposed to prosecution, even threatened with imprisonment. In a feature article, TAC had interviewed in 2009 and I reviewed myself the more calls she launched, particularly when the release of his book Classified Woman [A Woman Secret Classified Defence, ndt] in 2012.
Many assertions Edmonds had been brought against Turkish and Israeli front groups seeking to influence US foreign policy and indulging in illegal activities. In the list of identified illegal acts of corruption included the official high-level government and members of Congress in order to obtain licenses to export to embargoed countries, and to be made aware of information secret. Edmonds had been questioned by a congressional committee, several members of Congress and by permanent staff, and by the Inspector General of the FBI; the information she had given had been found “credible”, “serious”, and had to make “a thorough and careful check.” She also gave interviews to “60 Minutes” and Vanity Fair magazine, both able to confirm the key elements of his story.
Some critics say amounted to Edmonds exaggerated or misinterpreted what it claimed to know, but there was no reason to doubt his claims to the extent that she was quoting the documents and files that it were entrusted personally when she was in office. No one questioned his statements during investigations that had been conducted at the time. The Ministry of Justice has imposed to silence precisely because the information she revealed annoyed certain political interests or deemed to affect national security.
During one of his appearances in the media, Edmonds provides important information on Congressman Hastert, who was the subject of an FBI investigation when he was House speaker, a position to which he acceded in 1999 and remained for eight years. In his interview with TAC, Edmonds reported that in early 1997 because of information obtained by the FBI on the Turkish diplomatic community, the Ministry of Justice had already opened investigations into several Republican representatives. The first members of Congress known for its relations with the Turkish community, for the information he provided him and the favors he lavished him was Bob Livingston. Next on the list was Dan Burton, who later took the first position until Hastert became president of the House. The Attorney General Bill Clinton, Janet Reno, was made aware of these investigations, and as they were Republicans, she ordered the pursuit … In 1999, FBI agents in the Chicago section began purely and just listens on members of Congress.
In a statement in August 2009, Edmonds Hastert identified as “one of the first people in the US involved in operations and illegal actions, not in the interest of the United States but in that foreign governments and organizations foreigners “. She described in detail what she thought was the shady actions of Hastert: “This information was held in public. Business, once again, were made in various fields. The receipt by corruption, are important, issue cash or currency of money laundering, money laundering, for its election campaigns and also for personal use, with the appearance of legality, allow it distribute various favors and prepare others – preparing certain actions, make some things happen for the benefit of foreign entities and foreign governments for the benefit of the Turkish government and in the interests of certain business circles Turkish “.
When in the course of the deposition, he was asked the question “Did you have any reason to believe that Mr. Hastert, for example, killed one of the resolutions of the Armenian Genocide in exchange for money received from organizations Turkey “, she replied,” Yes, and … Okay … not only receive money, but there have been other acts, too, including reportedly being blackmailed for various reasons ” . At the time of the deposition, Hastert had left the Congress and was used for Dickstein Shapiro lobbying firm as an official lobbyist for Turkey, gaining from what we know millions of dollars in commissions.
Edmonds made a job description consisting of Turkish transcribe conversations on Hastert covering the period 1996-2003, to search for a possible blackmail operation. She recalled qu’Hastert “was using the town hall of Chicago where he was not a resident, to organize activities that morality does not accept a lot. I do not know if this could be used to blackmail, but the fact that foreign entities [Turkey and Israel] were aware, in fact, they sometimes participated in some of these activities as morally reprehensible in the City Hall, an administrative building, not a house, a private residence at certain times, on certain days, certain nights of the weekend. I do not know, therefore, if it did or not subject to blackmail, but they were involved in some of these activities. This was known “.
Under oath before the staff of the House and commissions, Edmonds reported hearing a tape recording of the conversation was monitored Turks touting their secret relations with a “Hastert.” They said giving him tens of thousands of dollars in illegal payments in exchange for political favors and information. Many transcripts involved a suspect of the Turkish consulate in the city, as well as several members of the American-Turkish Council and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations, business organizations, some FBI agents thought they served as a cover for an opportunity for organized crime. Some calls seemed to involve drug shipments and other possible crimes.
An important contact that often referred Turks in their calls was to nickname “Denny Boy”, later identified as Hastert. The listening tapes revealed that tens of thousands of dollars were paid to Hastert campaign background in small checks, because there is no obligation to register the gifts with a value below 200 dollars on public lists.
Vanity Fair has done enough to publicize the statements of Edmonds, and David Rose magazine wrote:
Hastert himself was never heard in the recordings, Edmonds told investigators, and it is possible that the payments are not covered as hollow assertions. Nevertheless, a review of federal reports Hastert reveals that the level of unreferenced payments received for his campaigns for many years is relatively high. Between April 1996 and December 2002, unreferenced personal donations to the Hastert for Congress Commiittee [Hastert committee in Congress] amounted to 483 thousand dollars.
Edmonds noted that listening to tapes contained repeated references to Hastert of volte face in the fall of 2000, during the campaign to designate the massacres of Armenians in Turkey between 1915 and 1923 under the term genocide. In August 2000, President Hastert said he would support the resolution and the whole House would pass for it to be passed. The resolution, to which the Turks are vehemently opposed, was adopted without a blow by the International Relations Committee by a large majority. Then, on October 19, shortly before the vote by the full House, Hastert withdrew.
Hastert said he decided his turnaround after reportedly received a letter from President Clinton, saying that the resolution, if passed, would be contrary to US interests. It is unclear whether a payment has not been done, but according to Edmonds, a senior official of the Turkish consulate reported in a recorded conversation that the price to convince Hastert to withdraw the resolution on the genocide amounted at least 500 000.
Hastert’s case, about to be closed these days, focuses on relatively minor federal laws on banking and pass on other facts found by the FBI on Hastert during the 20 years. One may ask, “why Hastert and why now? “But it does not seem to be a simple answer. This evokes more than just the frustration of FBI investigators demanding that something be done.
Edmonds, meanwhile, described how the case Hastert was ignored by the media and predicted that it would eventually retracted by the government. The prosecution on the charges originally were delayed, referral after referral, and recently they have gone astray in the preparation of a transaction that will allow the former member of Congress to plead guilty for acts of lesser importance, burying forever the details for blackmail.
Hastert and his lawyers have understood that they are in a position to threaten government prosecutors, knowing Hastert where many bodies were buried, to use a metaphor. In asking that the investigation reports about him – that could contain rendered accounts of illegal activities by a number of former officials – are published as defense elements, it can force the government to abandon or moderate charges against him. This is a similar method to that used in 2009 by Steven Rosen and Keith Weissman, the alleged spies AIPAC [American Israel Public Affairs Committee], which forced the resignation of President Judges of the formation responsible for the case.
Glenn Greenwald wrote: “those who have reserve policies and financial schemes are allowed to break the law without being punished. Often they do not even have to resort to brilliant lawyers because they do not even have to know what a court looks inside – even if they are stopped for the most egregious crimes. “ There is a particular irony here: the high-level criminals to avoid punishment by challenging their peers engaged in more or less the same practices, exercising at the bottom blackmail the government.
This is what seems to be the whole story of Dennis Hastert.
By Philip Giraldi
October 20, 2015
Philip Giraldi, a former CIA employee, is executive director of the Council for the National Interest [Council for the National Interest].
Translation Gilbert Béguian
Stéphane © armenews.com
The original title of the article is “Foreign Governments did they sing Denny Hastert?”
Jason Meisner and Jeff CoenContact Reporters
It was nearly 17 years ago that Dennis Hastert stood in the U.S. Capitol and was sworn in as the speaker of the House with his right hand raised.
On Wednesday in Chicago, Hastert took an oath of a different kind, swearing in a federal courtroom to tell the truth as he pleaded guilty to a felony count of illegally structuring cash withdrawals to evade bank currency-reporting requirements.
“Guilty, sir,” Hastert, 73, said in a hoarse voice as he leaned toward a microphone and acknowledged in the packed courtroom that he had made hush-money payments to cover up wrongdoing in his past.
The guilty plea marked a dramatic downfall for Hastert, one of Illinois’ most powerful Republicans who rose from humble beginnings as a small-town high school teacher to the third-highest political office in the country.
But while Hastert is now a convicted felon, the 20-minute hearing left more questions than answers. The 15-page plea agreement with prosecutors contains almost identical language as the indictment issued in May. It does not identify the person Hastert had agreed to pay $3.5 million to keep quiet or provide any new details on the wrongdoing Hastert was trying to cover up.
Under federal guidelines, Hastert faces a sentence ranging from probation to up to six months in prison. The judge, however, said that despite the agreement between parties, he is free to hand out a term of up to the statutory maximum of five years behind bars. He set sentencing for Feb. 29
Hastert’s attorney will almost certainly seek probation or possibly house arrest in lieu of prison.
In an emailed statement after the hearing, U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon hinted that more details about Hastert’s wrongdoing would come out at sentencing. Prosecutors intend to “provide the court with relevant information about (Hastert’s) background and the charged offenses” so the judge “can impose an appropriate sentence taking into account all relevant factors in the case,” Fardon said.
The bombshell indictment alleged that Hastert was making the withdrawals as part of an agreement to pay a total of $3.5 million to a longtime acquaintance, identified only as Individual A, to cover up wrongdoing from years ago.
Though the indictment only hints at the alleged wrongdoing, federal law enforcement sources have told the Tribune that Hastert was paying to cover up the sexual abuse of a student when Hastert was a wrestling coach and teacher at Yorkville High School.
This week, former House Speaker Dennis Hastert is expected to plead guilty to the charge of making secret payments to buy the silence of boys he had sexually abused when he was a high school wrestling coach. This plea deal with federal prosecutors would seal his court records, thus hiding from the public the details of the evidence against him.
Ever since 2005 when former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds exposed corruption at the highest levels of the US government, concerned citizens have been waiting impatiently for law enforcement officials to look into her shocking revelations.
Given the regrettably long silence by Washington and the mainstream US media, I believe it is time to expose once again the scandalous cover up of the claims that Turkish groups had bribed Speaker Hastert.
Philip Giraldi, former CIA officer and Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, published in The American Conservative last week the sinister details of foreign governments blackmailing Speaker Hastert.
Edmonds was fired from her FBI position after revealing to her superiors the penetration of US government entities by Turkish agents “who were seeking to influence U.S. foreign policy while sometimes engaging in illegal activity,” according to Giraldi. “The scope of the corruption allegedly involved bribery of senior government officials and congressmen, arranging for export licenses to countries that were embargoed, and the exposure of classified information,” Giraldi wrote.
In a 2009 deposition, Edmonds explained that Hastert was “one of the primary U.S. persons involved in operations and activities that are not legal, and they’re not for the interest of the United States but for the interest of foreign governments and foreign entities.” She described Hastert’s wrongdoing as: “The acceptance of large sums of bribery in forms of cash or laundered cash and laundering it to make it look legal for his campaigns, and also for his personal use, in order to do certain favors and call certain — call for certain actions, make certain things happen for foreign entities and foreign governments’ interests, Turkish government’s interest and Turkish business entities’ interests.”
During the deposition, Edmonds was asked: “Did you have reason to believe that Mr. Hastert, for example, killed one of the Armenian genocide resolutions in exchange for money from these Turkish organizations?” She responded: “Yes, I do…. Correct… and not only taking money, but other activities, too, including being blackmailed for various reasons.” After retiring from the House of Representatives, Hastert worked for the Washington firm of Dickstein Shapiro as a registered lobbyist for Turkey.
Edmonds also revealed during her deposition that Hastert “used the townhouse [in Chicago] that was not his residence for certain not very morally accepted activities. Now, whether that was being used as blackmail I don’t know, but the fact that foreign entities knew about this, in fact, they sometimes participated in some of those not maybe morally well activities in that particular townhouse that was supposed to be an office, not a house, residence, at certain hours, certain days, evenings of the week. So I can’t say if that was used as blackmail or not, but certain activities they would share. They were known.”
Edmonds told congressional investigators that on FBI phone recordings Turkish individuals boasted of their secret relationship with Hastert. “They discussed giving him tens of thousands of dollars in clandestine payments in exchange for political favors and information. Many of the transcripts involved a suspect at the city’s Turkish Consulate, as well as several members of the American-Turkish Council and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations, business entities that some FBI agents believed served as occasional covers for organized crime. Some calls appeared to be referring to drug shipments and other possible crimes,” Giraldi wrote.
“Edmonds noted that the phone taps contained repeated references to Hastert’s volte face [change of position] in the fall of 2000 over the campaign to have Congress designate the killings of Armenians in Turkey between 1915 and 1923 a genocide. In August 2000, Speaker Hastert declared that he would support the resolution and send it to the full House for a vote. The resolution, vehemently opposed by the Turks, did indeed pass in the International Relations Committee by a large majority. Then, on October 19, shortly before a full House vote, Hastert withdrew it…. A senior official at the Turkish Consulate indicated in one recorded conversation that the “price for convincing Hastert to withdraw the genocide resolution would be at least $500,000,” Giraldi reported in his article.
Fifteen years later, the American public is still waiting for the US government to investigate the serious allegations of Turkish bribery and blackmail of Speaker Hastert!
By PHILIP GIRALDI • a former CIA officer, is executive director of the Council for the National Interest.October 20, 2015
Alleged misconduct by the House speaker was well known to the FBI—and to Turkey and Israel.
As former House Speaker Dennis Hastert prepares to plead guilty in accordance with a deal he has made with federal prosecutors, most media will focus on the crimes the FBI mentioned in his indictment. Since Hastert was charged in May, the public has been shocked to learn that the former high-school wrestling coach allegedly spent large sums trying to cover up past sexual abuse. But one prominent whistleblower has been speaking up about the possible misdeeds of Hastert for years now—and the way that they may have compromised national security.
Longtime readers of The American Conservative are familiar with the Sibel Edmonds saga. Edmonds, an FBI translator who revealed large-scale corruption throughout the government, has received multiple gag orders under the State Secrets Act. She has nevertheless persevered in spite of concerns that she would be prosecuted and possibly imprisoned. TAC interviewed her for a feature article in 2009, and I also reviewed her claims multiple times over the last few years, including when her book Classified Woman came out in 2012.
Many of Edmonds’s claims involved Turkish and Israeli front groups seeking to influence U.S. policy while sometimes also engaging in illegal activity. The scope of the corruption allegedly involved bribery of senior government officials and congressmen, arranging for export licenses to countries that were embargoed, and the exposure of classified information. Edmonds has been questioned by a congressional committee, by individual congressmen and staffers, as well as by the FBI inspector general, and her information was found to be “credible,” “serious,” and “warrant[ing] a thorough and careful review.” She also provided interviews for “60 Minutes” and Vanity Fair, both of which were able to confirm key elements of her story.
Some critics have opined that Edmonds overstates or misinterprets what she claims to know, but there is no reason to doubt her veracity when she describes documents and investigative files that she personally handled during her time with the bureau. No one has challenged her accounts of the investigations that were underway at that time. She has been gagged by the Justice Department precisely because the information she revealed is damaging to certain political and purported national-security interests.
In the course of her various media appearances, Edmonds provided significant information on Congressman Hastert, who was under FBI investigation while he was speaker of the House, a role he assumed in 1999 and held for eight years. In her TAC interview, Edmonds related that “In early 1997, because of the information that the FBI was getting on the Turkish diplomatic community, the Justice Department had already started to investigate several Republican congressmen. The number-one congressman involved with the Turkish community, both in terms of providing information and doing favors, was Bob Livingston. Number-two after him was Dan Burton, and then he became number-one until Hastert became the speaker of the House. Bill Clinton’s attorney general, Janet Reno, was briefed on the investigations, and since they were Republicans, she authorized that they be continued… In 1999, [FBI agents in the Chicago field office] wiretapped the congressmen directly.”
In a deposition given in August 2009, Edmonds identified Hastert as “one of the primary U.S. persons involved in operations and activities that are not legal, and they’re not for the interest of the United States but for the interest of foreign governments and foreign entities.” She detailed what she believed to be Hastert’s wrongdoing: “This information has been public. The concerns, again would be several categories. The acceptance of large sums of bribery in forms of cash or laundered cash and laundering is to make it look legal for his campaigns, and also for his personal use, in order to do certain favors and call certain—call for certain actions, make certain things happen for foreign entities and foreign governments’ interests, Turkish government’s interest and Turkish business entities’ interests.”
When asked in the deposition, “Did you have reason to believe that Mr. Hastert, for example, killed one of the Armenian genocide resolutions in exchange for money from these Turkish organizations?” she responded, “Yes, I do… Correct… and not only taking money, but other activities, too, including being blackmailed for various reasons.” At the time of the deposition Hastert had left Congress and was working for the Washington lobbying firm Dickstein Shapiro as a registered lobbyist for Turkey, reportedly earning millions of dollars in commissions.
Edmonds described her work on Turkish-language transcripts of investigations relating to Hastert covering the period 1996 until January 2003, elaborating on the possibility of blackmail. She recalled that Hastert “used the townhouse [in Chicago] that was not his residence for certain not very morally accepted activities. Now, whether that was being used as blackmail I don’t know, but the fact that foreign entities [Turkey and Israel] knew about this, in fact, they sometimes participated in some of those not maybe morally well activities in that particular townhouse that was supposed to be an office, not a house, residence at certain hours, certain days, evenings of the week. So I can’t say if that was used as blackmail or not, but certain activities they would share. They were known.”
In testimony before congressional staffers and committees, Edmonds has reported hearing Turkish wiretap targets boast of their secret relationship with a “Hastert.” They discussed giving him tens of thousands of dollars in clandestine payments in exchange for political favors and information. Many of the transcripts involved a suspect at the city’s Turkish Consulate, as well as several members of the American-Turkish Council and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations, business entities that some FBI agents believed served as occasional covers for organized crime. Some calls appeared to be referring to drug shipments and other possible crimes.
One important contact was repeatedly referred to by Turkish callers under the nickname “Denny boy,” later identified as Hastert. The wiretaps revealed that tens of thousands of dollars were paid to Hastert’s campaign fund in small checks because donations of less than $200 need not be itemized in public filings.
Vanity Fair did its own due diligence in covering Edmonds’s claims, and the magazine’s David Rose wrote:
Hastert himself was never heard in the recordings, Edmonds told investigators, and it is possible that the claims of covert payments were hollow boasts. Nevertheless, an examination of Hastert’s federal filings shows that the level of un-itemized payments his campaigns received over many years was relatively high. Between April 1996 and December 2002, un-itemized personal donations to the Hastert for Congress Committee amounted to $483,000.
Edmonds noted that the phone taps contained repeated references to Hastert’s volte face in the fall of 2000 over the campaign to have Congress designate the killings of Armenians in Turkey between 1915 and 1923 a genocide. In August 2000, Speaker Hastert declared that he would support the resolution and send it to the full House for a vote. The resolution, vehemently opposed by the Turks, did indeed pass in the International Relations Committee by a large majority. Then, on October 19, shortly before a full House vote, Hastert withdrew it.
Hastert explained his switch as being based on a letter he had supposedly received from President Clinton arguing that the resolution, if passed, would be damaging to U.S. interests. It is not known if a payoff ever occurred but, per Edmonds, a senior official at the Turkish Consulate indicated in one recorded conversation that the price for convincing Hastert to withdraw the genocide resolution would be at least $500,000.
Fast forward to the Dennis Hastert case making the rounds today, which focuses on relatively minor federal banking laws and ignores the other evidence that has been collected by the FBI on Hastert for the past 20 years. One has to ask, “Why Hastert and why now?”, but there does not seem to be a simple answer. It might be little more than the result of frustrated FBI investigators demanding that some action be taken.
Edmonds, for her part, has described how the Hastert case has been ignored by the media and has predicted that it would eventually be made to go away by the government. Indeed, legal action following up on the original indictment has been delayed through postponement after postponement and more recently sidetracked into a plea bargain that will allow the former congressman to plead guilty to reduced charges while at the same time sealing forever the unsavory details linked to his being blackmailed.
Hastert and his lawyers understand that they are well placed to effectively threaten the government prosecutors because Hastert knows where a lot of bodies are buried, metaphorically speaking. By demanding that the investigative files on him—which could include reports of illegal activity by a broad range of former officials—be released as part of his defense, he can force the government to drop or mitigate the charges against him. It is a ploy similar to that used by alleged AIPAC spies Steven Rosen and Keith Weissman in 2009, which led to the presiding judge’s dismissal of the case.
Glenn Greenwald writes that “Those with political and financial clout are routinely allowed to break the law with no legal repercussions whatsoever. Often they need not even exploit their access to superior lawyers because they don’t see the inside of a courtroom in the first place—not even when they get caught in the most egregious criminality.” There is a particular irony here: criminals in high office may avoid punishment through their willingness to implicate their peers who are engaged in much the same practices, in effect blackmailing the government to leave them alone or face the consequences. That is what the Dennis Hastert story appears to be all about.
Philip Giraldi, a former CIA officer, is executive director of the Council for the National Interest.
A scandal too deep, too dark, and covers too many people from both sides of the political aisle for it to ever proceed in public
When former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert was first indicted, the mainstream press treated it as a story of a long-ago transgression that has long since been swept under the rug. But a series of revelations from FBI whistleblowers reveal that this story is just the tip of a very seedy iceberg, one that implicates Hastert, his top aide, other Congress members and government officials in a criminal network involved in sexual intrigue, foreign espionage, blackmail, and drug money…
*Information on Dennis Hastert and ‘others’ are also covered in my books Classified Woman & The Lone Gladio. For this campaign, until October 31, we are offering both e-books under $2. Please spread the word; for truth & integrity.
BY HARUT SASSOUNIAN
1) Lying to the FBI on why he had withdrawn nearly $1.7 million from various banks in the last four years,
2) Evading the reporting requirements of banks for large cash transactions.
Each count carries a maximum penalty of five-years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The indictment charges that in 2010 Hastert secretly met one of his former students and agreed to pay him $3.5 million to secure his silence for “past misconduct”, when he was a wrestling coach at the Yorkville High School in Illinois from 1965 to 1981. Since that meeting, Hastert, 73, paid him $1.7 million by withdrawing initially $50,000 at a time from several banks, and after being questioned by bank officials, he reduced each withdrawal to just under $10,000, to evade the banks’ reporting requirements.
In December 2014, when asked by the FBI as to why he had made such large cash withdrawals, Hastert made “materially false, fictitious and fraudulent statements,” the federal prosecutors said. Hastert was making these payments to his former student to conceal sexually abusing him decades ago, according to various news reports.
Hastert’s indictment is of particular interest to the Armenian-American community because of past accusations that he received large bribes from Turkish entities to quash pending Armenian Genocide resolutions, while serving as Speaker of the House of Representatives from 1999 to 2007. These claims were never fully investigated by the U.S. government. After retiring from Congress, Hastert worked for Dickstein Shapiro in Washington, D.C., as a lobbyist for Turkey and other clients.
Ironically, at the start of his political career, Cong. Hastert strongly supported recognition of the Armenian Genocide. He spoke on the House floor on April 19, 1984, in favor of a congressional resolution acknowledging the Genocide. On June 5, 1996, he voted for an amendment to cut U.S. aid to Turkey until that country recognized the Armenian Genocide. Furthermore, in August 2000, Speaker Hastert met with Armenian community leaders in Glendale, pledging to bring the pending Armenian Genocide resolution to a vote, despite Pres. Clinton’s vehement objections.
However, moments before the genocide resolution was to be voted upon on October 19, 2000, Speaker Hastert yanked the bill from consideration, using the excuse that Pres. Clinton had sent him a letter raising “grave national security concerns.” How is it that the Republican House Speaker, who fiercely opposed a Democrat President on almost every issue and supported his impeachment, suddenly decides to agree with him on rejecting the Armenian Genocide resolution? Four days later, the Turkish Sabah newspaper reported that Hastert had agreed to block the resolution on condition that Pres. Clinton made such a request in writing.
Could there have been a sinister reason why Speaker Hastert had a sudden change of heart on the Armenian Genocide issue?
Vanity Fair magazine revealed in its September 2005 issue that former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds had reviewed wiretaps of Turkish phone calls claiming that Speaker Hastert’s price to withdraw the Armenian Genocide resolution would be at least $500,000. The FBI overheard Turkish speakers boasting that they have “arranged for tens of thousands of dollars to be paid to Hastert’s campaign funds in small checks” because contributions less than $200 do not have to be itemized in public filings. In fact, Vanity Fair’s examination of Speaker Hastert’s federal filings from 1996 to 2002 showed that his campaign had received close to $500,000 in un-itemized payments.
Shockingly, rather than investigating Edmonds’ credible accusations, the FBI fired her, and the US government did not allow her to testify in Congress or in court, using the “state-secrets privilege” as a cover.
Not surprisingly, Speaker Hastert’s visits to Turkey in 2002 and 2004 were funded by the Turkish-US Business Council. Consequently, in July 2004, Hastert issued a blunt statement vowing to block all future Armenian Genocide resolutions — a pledge he kept until his departure from the House in November 2007!
Interestingly, Hastert’s personal wealth went from $270,000 to up to $17 million during his two decades of service in Congress, at a time when his congressional salary was $175,000 a year! Where did his millions come from?
Six months after leaving the House, Hastert began to reap the benefits of serving Turkish interests in Congress by joining the firm Dickstein Shapiro as a lobbyist representing the Turkish government, among other clients. He worked jointly with former House Majority Leader Dick Gephardt, sometimes travelling together to Turkey, and splitting millions of dollars in lucrative lobbying fees. Last week, immediately after the federal indictment was issued, Hastert resigned from the lobbying firm.
A full investigation should now be conducted of all allegations against Hastert that have been ignored for far too long. The American public needs to know if he were being bribed, or even worse, blackmailed, by Turkish entities during his tenure as Speaker, the third most powerful office in Washington after the President and Vice President!
J. Dennis Hastert, the former speaker of the House of Representatives, was paying a man to not say publicly that Mr. Hastert had sexually abused him decades ago, according to two people briefed on the evidence uncovered in an F.B.I. investigation into the payments.
Federal prosecutors on Thursday announced the indictment of Mr. Hastert on allegations that he made cash withdrawals designed to hide those payments and for lying to federal authorities about the purpose of the withdrawals.
READ MORE »
Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives J. Dennis Hastert was indicted on federal charges Thursday for allegedly structuring the withdrawal of over $950,000 in cash in a way to avoid reporting requirements, and then lying to the FBI about it. report NBCNews
Hastert allegedly took out the cash and handed it over to a Yorkville, Illinois, resident “in order to compensate and conceal his prior misconduct” against that person, according to the indictment.
Hastert, 73, of Plano, Illinois, is charged with one count each of structuring currency transactions to evade currency transaction reports and making a false statement to the FBI, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois said.
Hastert, a Republican, served as speaker of the House of Representatives from 1999 to 2007. Hastert resigned in 2007, and has been working as a lobbyist since 2008, according to the government.
The indictment alleges that Hastert withdrew $1.7 million from 2010 to 2014 and gave it to the unidentified person, referred to in the indictment as “individual A.”
The indictment does not specify what the acts were or when they happened, only that they occurred “years earlier.” The indictment says “individual A” has known Hastert for most of his or her life, but does not elaborate on the relationship. The indictment says Hastert was a high school teacher and coach in Yorkville from 1965 to 1981.
Hastert is accused of withdrawing $952,000 of that $1.7 million in increments of less than $10,000 so as to avoid regulations that require banks to report withdrawals over that amount.
Hastert agreed in 2010 to pay “individual A” a total of $3.5 million in compensation, according to the indictment.
Hastert at first made larger withdrawals, taking out $50,000 at a time on 15 occasions between June 2010 and April 2012, but scaled back the withdrawals to less than $10,000 at a time after bank officials questioned him about the larger amounts, according to the indictment.
When asked about the withdrawals by the FBI in December, Hastert allegedly told agents, “Yeah … I kept the cash. That’s what I’m doing,” when he was actually giving the money to “individual A” as part of the agreement.
Under the alleged agreement, Hastert handed over $50,000 cash payments to “individual A” every six weeks. In 2014, the former congressman began paying that person $100,000 every three months, according to the indictment.
The FBI began investigating Hastert in 2013, partly because investigators wanted to know if he was the victim of an extortion scheme, court documents said.
Each of the two criminal charges carries a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. A court date has not yet been set.
Hastert served as a U.S. Representative from 1987 until his resignation on Nov. 26, 2007.
Hastert spent 16 years as a teacher of history, economics and government at Yorkville High School, where he also coached football and wrestling, according to his biography on the Wheaton College website, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in 1964.
On Thurs., Jan. 29, a coalition of organizations representing Armenian Americans sent letters to more than 200 businesses, universities, and NGOs currently working with one of 5 firms—including those led by former congressional leaders Dick Gephardt (Gephardt Government Affairs) and Dennis Hastert (Dickstein Shapiro)—that are helping Turkey to deny the Armenian Genocide in Congress. #deturkeyfication of Washington
Despite international consensus from historians about the Armenian Genocide, Turkey is well known for its aggressive, ongoing denial of this crime, which witnessed the planned and systematic murder of more than 1.5 million Christian Armenians between 1915 and 1923. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the genocide, and Armenian Americans, along with allies nationwide, will be protesting and drawing public scrutiny on both Turkey’s primary lobbying firms and the companies and organizations that continue to do business with them.
It’s a disgrace that Dick Gephardt and Dennis Hastert—two former leaders of the U.S. House—are making millions enforcing a foreign government’s gag rule on our White House and among the Congress in which they once served,” said Aram Hamparian, executive director of the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).
“Gephardt and Hastert should drop their Turkey contract, and, if they won’t, their clients should drop them.”
According to U.S. Department of Justice Foreign Agent Registration Act records, the firms Gephardt Government Affairs, Dickstein Shapiro, Greenberg Traurig, Alpaytac, and LB International all support Turkey’s genocide denial agenda. Their clients include PepsiCo, TIME Inc., Amazon.com Inc., and Chrysler.
The letters to the client businesses requested that they—in light of their firm’s participation in genocide denial—demand that their firm end its contract with the Turkish government.
If the firm does not end its relationship with Turkey, the letter requests that the client company/organization end its own contract with the firm.
If neither occurs by Wed., Feb. 25—60 days out from April 24, the global Day of Remembrance of the genocide—Armenian Americans will start protests against these firms and their clients.
Coalition partners include four of the largest Armenian-American organizations: the ANCA, Armenian Assembly of America, and the Armenian Youth Federation of both the Eastern and Western United States.