Kushner Under Fire for Receiving $30M From Israeli Firm While Shaping Middle East Policy

Kushner Under Fire for Receiving $30M From Israeli Firm While Shaping Middle East Policy

“Are you comfortable with having Jared Kushner be the beneficiary of huge amounts of Israeli financing at the same time he’s overseeing U.S. foreign policy on Israel?”

(Common Dreams, by President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner is once more under intense scrutiny after new reporting revealed that his lucrative financial relationship with Israel has deepened even as his influence over U.S. Middle East policy—from his leading role in Trump’s effort to “derail” a U.N. vote against Israel to his sway over the president’s Jerusalem move—has continued to grow.

“There has indeed been clear collusion proven between pre-inaugurated Trump and a foreign power—with Israel, to sink Obama’s U.N. policy on settlements.”
—Glenn Greenwald, The Intercept

According to a report published Sunday by the New York Times, Kushner’s real estate firm received a $30 million investment from Menora Mivtachim—one of Israel’s largest financial institutions—just before he accompanied Trump on his first diplomatic trip to Israel last year.

“The deal, which was not made public, pumped significant new equity into 10 Maryland apartment complexes controlled by Mr. Kushner’s firm,” the Timesnotes. “While Mr. Kushner has sold parts of his business since taking a White House job last year, he still has stakes in most of the family empire—including the apartment buildings in and around Baltimore.”

While Menora executive Ran Markman insisted that Kushner’s role in directing America’s Middle East policy “didn’t make us do the deal,” critics raised pointed questions about the ethics of the transaction.

Describing Kushner as “the worst and most oppressive kind of slum lord,” The Intercept‘s Glenn Greenwald asked, “Are you comfortable with having Jared Kushner be the beneficiary of huge amounts of Israeli financing at the same time he’s overseeing U.S. foreign policy on Israel?”

And the Menora deal is just one component of Kushner’s sprawling and complex financial ties with Israel, the Times makes clear.

In April, the Times reported that the Kushners had teamed up with at least one member of Israel’s wealthy Steinmetz family to buy nearly $200 million of Manhattan apartment buildings, as well as to build a luxury rental tower in New Jersey…

Mr. Kushner’s company has also taken out at least four loans from Israel’s largest bank, Bank Hapoalim, which is the subject of a Justice Department investigation over allegations that it helped wealthy Americans evade taxes.

The firm also bought several floors of the former New York Times headquarters building in Manhattan from Lev Leviev, an Israeli businessman and philanthropist.

And the Kushner family’s foundation continues to donate money to a settlement group in the West Bank.

“No one could ever imagine this scale of ongoing business interests, not in a local peanut farm or a hardware store but sprawling global businesses that give the president and his top adviser personal economic stakes in an astounding number of policy interests,” said Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen.

The Times report comes just days after the Wall Street Journal revealed that the Trump transition team’s failed effort to undermine a 2016 United Nations Security Council resolution condemning illegal Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank—led in part by Kushner and encouraged by Israeli government officials—”was wider and more intense than has been reported.”

According to the Journal, Kushner “directed” former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn to pressure foreign governments—including Russia—to delay or defeat the resolution. Flynn admitted to lying to the FBI about the effort last month.

Greenwald concluded in a tweet on Sunday that the Trump transition team’s campaign to defeat the U.N. resolution at Israel’s behest lays bare a fact that is “uncomfortable for many.”

“There has indeed been clear collusion proven between pre-inaugurated Trump and a foreign power—with Israel, to sink Obama’s U.N. policy on settlements,” Greenwald wrote.

 

Related stories:

The Story Behind Jared Kushner’s Curious Acceptance into Harvard

Kushner’s Company Issued Subpoena Over Misuse of Visa Program

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  1. Hank O'Neill

    The truth of the matter is that this is pure unfettered corruption. There is no other term for it. It is the epitome of the ruling class. In most civilized countries this type of behavior would land the perpetrator in prison whilst his ill gotten gains would go to the state in a lesson to both parties. Not the USA.
    In the USA we are surrounded by tens of million of voters who have been programmed into the lifestyle of fake ‘patriotism’ in support of the de facto military dictatorship under which America truly is run. The citizen leader is in fact a mere figurehead that does the bidding of the money that is offered.
    Voters will not change the status quo as long as there is cheap gasoline to power cheap SUVs (cheap payments anyway) 30 year mortgages on houses they can barely afford and plentiful food for all.
    The masses are held hostage by a major minority of middle classes who are happy enough with their Friday night dinners and weekday little league that they never stop to consider the bigger picture because for them…the picture is complete.
    It will take a food shortage combined with a severe economic catastrophe to steer towards revolution: And without revolution, there will be no change.

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