Conyers Heeds the Call on Perle Investigation
"I would submit that it is a conflict of interest for a high-ranking government official to be proffering advice on how to profit from the war."
– Rep. John Conyers [D - MI]
On March 31, CounterPunch ran an article I wrote entitled "Has Richard Perle Committed Treason?". My piece urged readers to contact their Representatives and Senators in Washington to demand that Richard Perle be investigated for what amounts to a career of profiteering off of his conflicts of interest. In the days after this piece a succession of emails came in, in which the writers indicated that they thought a Congressional investigation of Mr. Perle’s foreign entanglements was a fine idea indeed.
Over the last week, the notion that Richard Perle’s actions merit closer scrutiny has gained momentum. So much momentum that Reuters reports that Michigan’s "Rep. John Conyers, the top Democrat on the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, asked the Pentagon’s inspector general to probe Perle’s work as a paid adviser to bankrupt telecommunications company Global Crossing Ltd. and his guidance on investment opportunities resulting from the Iraq conflict." Among Conyers’ concerns are "reports that Perle participated in a conference call sponsored by Goldman Sachs to discuss investment opportunities emerging from the war in Iraq", Perle’s receipt of "stock options from a company doing business with the U.S. military", and Perle’s recent actions on behalf of Global Crossing, which were discussed at some length in my 3/31 piece.
One should not underestimate the importance of this action by Representative Conyers. Until recently, Richard Perle has not been a figure to be trifled with by Washington insiders. His appearances on cable talk shows were infused with all the drama and suspense of a Catholic mass, as it was a given that the Chairman of the Defense Policy Board held the admissible, correct view on everything he discussed.
Perle has been close to power since before the Berlin Wall fell, but he has never been so vulnerable as he is now. This vulnerability is bad news for those in our government who have embraced what now appears to be his terminally compromised counsel. Bad news for the war planners who bankrupt us and tell us what fine conservatives and Christians they are. Damned fine news for those of us who want to take our country back. To loosen the grip of the vipers who have spent America’s treasure on the destruction of nations around the globe, and to finally allow America to fulfill its promise.
I implore you, again, to contact your Congressmen and Senators, to urge them to join Representative Conyers in demanding that Richard Perle’s actions and business ties receive a thorough examination. Both the present and the future of our nation may depend upon it.
ANTHONY GANCARSKI is a regular columnist for CounterPunch. He would appreciate any emails from those planning to or who have contacted Congress regarding this matter; these can be sent to Anthony.Gancarski@attbi.com