Carter's Arab financiers-The Washington Times - Comment - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper
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    • PETER SM
    • 22.12.09 | 12:00 (IST)

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2006/dec/20/20061220-092736-3365r/ "To understand what feeds former president Jimmy Carter's anti-Israeli frenzy, look at his early links to Arab business. Between 1976-1977, the Carter family peanut business received a bailout in the form of a $4.6 million, "poorly managed" and highly irregular loan from the National Bank of Georgia (NBG). According to a July 29, 1980 Jack Anderson expose in The Washington Post, the bank's biggest borrower was Mr. Carter, and its chairman at that time was Mr. Carter's confidant, and later his director of the Office of Management and Budget, Bert Lance. At that time, Mr. Lance's mismanagement of the NBG got him and the bank into trouble. Agha Hasan Abedi, the Pakistani founder of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI), known as the bank "which would bribe God," came to Mr. Lance's rescue making him a $100,000-a-year consultant. Abedi then declared: "we would never talk about exploiting his relationship with the president." Next, he introduced Mr. Lance to Saudi billionaire Gaith Pharaon, who fronted for BCCI and the Saudi royal family. In January 1978, Abedi paid off Mr. Lance's $3.5 million debt to the NBG, and Pharaon secretly gained control over the bank. Mr. Anderson wrote: "Of course, the Saudis remained discretely silent... kept quiet about Carter's irregularities... [and] renegotiated the loan to Carter's advantage." There is no evidence that the former president received direct payment from the Saudis. But "according to... the bank files, [it] renegotiated the repayment terms... savings... $60,000 for the Carter family... The President owned 62% of the business and therefore was the largest beneficiary." Pharaon later contributed generously to the former president's library and center. When Mr. Lance introduced Mr. Carter to Abedi, the latter gave $500,000 to help the former president establish his center at Emory University. Later, Abedi contributed more than $10 million to Mr. Carter's different projects. Even after BCCI was indicted ? and convicted -? for drug money laundering, Mr. Carter accepted $1.5 million from Abedi, his "good friend." A quick survey of the major contributors to the Carter Center reveals hundreds of millions of dollars from Saudi and Gulf contributors. But it was BCCI that helped Mr. Carter established his center. BCCI's origins were primarily ideological. Abedi wanted the bank to reflect the supra-national Muslim credo and "the best bridge to help the world of Islam, and the best way to fight the evil influence of the Zionists." "-

    from the article: Jimmy Carter to U.S. Jews: Forgive me for stigmatizing Israel
    First published 09:52 22.12.09 | Last updated 10:30 22.12.09
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