Dennis Ross Chairmanship of Israeli Government Funded Think Tank Could Torpedo Iran...

Thu Jan 29, 2009 12:43pm EST

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

Dennis Ross Chairmanship of Israeli Government Funded Think Tank Could Torpedo
Iran Envoy Job

Israel Lobby Archive releases new DOJ Foreign Agent files
http://www.IRmep.org/ila/ja

WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Former Clinton Administration
Middle East diplomat Dennis Ross is under consideration as US State Department
envoy to Iran.   Ross is currently the chairman of the Jewish People Policy
Planning Institute (JPPPI) in Jerusalem, established by the Jewish Agency in
2002.  Ross could face legal challenges under the 1938 Foreign Agents
Registration Act, or FARA, if he enters US government service.

FARA protects the American people and Congress from stealth propaganda and
foreign lobbying through strict public disclosure filings.  The Jewish Agency
has repeatedly surfaced during investigations in the US.  In the 1960s the
Senate Foreign Relations Committee uncovered a network of stealth Jewish
Agency "conduits" financing grassroots Israel lobby startup groups through the
American Zionist Council (AZC).   During 1963 hearings the Senate revealed the
equivalent of $35 million went toward US lobbying, including $38,000 to
American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) founder Isaiah Kenen between
1960-1961.

Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy ordered the AZC to register as the Jewish
Agency's foreign agent in November of 1962.  The AZC shifted lobbying
activities over to AIPAC and shut down.  In 1969 the Department of Justice
ordered the Jewish Agency to file its secret 1953 Covenant Agreement with the
Israeli government.  The Covenant agreement reveals the Jewish Agency's
ongoing receipt of Israeli government funds for operations and powers such as
executive review of legislative matters before they go to the Knesset. The
Jewish Agency New York office, like the AZC, quickly shut down only to
reorganize under a new US shell corporation in 1971.  

Since 2002 former American diplomat Dennis Ross has filed no FARA activity
declarations.  This could be a problem according to IRmep director Grant F.
Smith. "The US Department of Justice has always asked US recipients of Jewish
Agency funding -- whether the American Zionist Council and its US executives,
or the Jewish Agency's New York office -- to register as agents of a foreign
principal.  With US-Iran diplomacy and restoration of productive relations
looming so urgently, now is certainly not the time to resurrect foreign agent
registration battles."

Researchers may view newly released documents about the Jewish Agency and the
US Department of Justice Foreign Registration Act at
http://www.IRmep.org/ila/ja. The Israel Lobby Archive is a unit of the
Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy (IRmep) in Washington.   


SOURCE  Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy

Grant Smith of the Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy,
+1-202-342-7325
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