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View Diary: AIPAC, Treason and Israel (38 comments)

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  •  Spying not treason. (4.00)
    Treason has a legal definition.  Franklin is guilty of spying, not treason.  You may feel his actions are as bad as treason, but he still doesn't meet the legal test.

    For my part, I'm pretty impressed that he got such a significant sentence.  Here are some differences between his case and Ames:

    • Franklin was spying for a friendly power, not a hostile one.

    • Franklin apparently helped (or is helping) make the case against the two AIPAC officials who are being targeted.

    • Franklin's spying did not compromise individuals or methods, at least not to the extent that Ames did (people died in that case).

    Say what you want about AIPAC and the US / Israeli alliance, but when people get caught spying for Israel, they have a history of getting punished.

    Is America finally suffering from Idiot Fatigue?

    by LarryInNYC on Fri Jan 20, 2006 at 11:54:00 AM PST

    •  moreover, determined the court (none)
      "In sentencing Franklin, U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III said the facts of the case led him to believe that Franklin was motivated primarily by a desire to help the United States, not hurt it."
    •  Well,... (4.00)
      ....except for:

      • Stephen Bryen - Overheard in 1979 in the Madison Hotel Coffee Shop, offering classified documents to an official of the Israeli Embassy in the presence of the director of AIPAC while he was a staff member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.  The Committee refused to grant access by Justice Department officials to files which were key to the investigation, and the investigation was shut down (although Bryen was asked to resign, and he did.  Richard Perle later gave him a job in the Reagan administration in 1981).

      • Michael Ledeen - Also hired at one time by Perle in th 80's, he became involved in Iran-Contra in 1984 when he suggested to his superior, Oliver North, "that Israeli contacts might be useful in obtaining release of the U.S. hostages in Lebanon."  But, before that, Ledeen had lived in Rome and woked as a correspondent for The New Republic.  While there, the CIA had listed him as an agent of influence of a foreign government: Israel.  Michael, though, was later hired as a consultant to Doug Feith's Office of Special Plans, and still consults Karl Rove on foreign policy matters.

      • Richard Perle - In 1970, while a member of Senator Henry M. "Scoop" Jackson's staff and working for him on Senate Foreign Relations Committee matters, an FBI wiretap authorized for the Israeli Embassy picked up Perle discussing with an Embassy official classified information which he said had been supplied to him by a staff member on the National Security Council.

      • Paul Wolfowitz - In 1978, he was investigated for providing a classified document on a proposed sale of U.S. weapons to an Arab government, to an Israel Government official, through an AIPAC intermediary. An inquiry was launched and later dropped.

      • Doug Feith - In 1972, he was a Middle East analyst in the Near East and South Asian Affairs section of the National Security Council.  But, he was fired because he'd been the object of an inquiry into whether he'd provided classified material to an official of the Israeli Embassy in Washington.
    •  Franklin was using the Israelis, not the other way (none)
      This wasn't really spying. Spying implies that the Israelis asked him for classified information for their own purposes. What it sounds like is that Franklin passed the information to the Israelis because he thought the Israelis would raise enough noise that the national security council would be forced to pay attention to something he wanted them to pay attention to. Its wrong, but it more like leaking to a journalist than spying for another country.
      •  Not true (none)
        Franklin may say that, but the indictment indicates that he's full of shit.

        Specifically, AIPAC's Steve Rosen called the a DoD employee on August 5, 2002, and asked for the name of someone within the Pentagon with an expertise in Iran and was given Franklin's name.  Franklin later called Rosen on 8/15/02, saying that he had heard that Rosen was interested in issues concerning Iran.

        It was after this that Rosen, Franklin and Keith Weissman of AIPAC cultivated their relationship.   Rosen & Weissman would then pass the information they got from Franklin on to Israeli officials like Naor Gilon as well as others, including the media.

        The indictment also indicates that Rosen & Weissman cemented the relationship by getting Franklin to think they could help him get a job on the National Security Council staff (see page 10).

        Also note that the indictment shows that Franklin had a relationship with Gilon that began on August 15, the same day that Franklin returned Rosen's phone call.  Franklin met with Gilon that day at a restaurant in D.C., but the indictment doesn't indicate who called who to set up the meeting.  But, considering this is the day that Franklin called Rosen back, it doesn't take a genius to figure out that Rosen probably put Franklin in contact with Gilon.

        And Gilon worked Franklin pretty good, assuring him during their first meeting that "he was the 'policy' person at the embassy and he would be the appropriate person with whom" he should speak.  Gilon also went to the Pentagon Officers Althletic Club (POAC) on several occasions to meet up with Franklin - that takes some balls!!!

        My favorite meeting between Gilon and Franklin: 2/13/04 at the POAC, where Gilon suggested that Franklin should meet "with a person previously associated with" the Mossad.  Gilon also gave Franklin a gift card!  Franklin also met with the ex-Mossad guy in a Pentagon cafeteria! (balls!!!!)

        You see, this wasn't just a case of Franklin giving anonymous tips to Israel because he was worried about US policy.  AIPAC and Naor Gilon worked him pretty good.  

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