A Clinton Foundation Moment: “Unless The Saudi Sheikh Gave Us $6 Million, This Sounds Crazy To Do”
In what appears an amusing instance of the Clinton Foundation caught (with its pants down) in a glorious pay-to-play moment, in one of today’s leaked Podesta emails from November 2011, Ira Magaziner, who is Vice Chairman and CEO of the Clinton Health Access Initiative, sent an email to John Podesta and Amitabh Desai, Director of Foreign Policy at the Clinton Foundation, in which he said that “CHAI [Clinton Health Access Initiative] would like to request that President Clinton call Sheik Mohammed to thank him for offering his plane to the conference in Ethiopia and expressing regrets that President Clinton’s schedule does not permit him to attend the conference.”
He appears to be referring to Sheikh Mohammed Hussein Ali Al-‘Amoudi, a Saudi Arabian and Ethiopian billionaire businessman, whose net worth was estimated at Forbes at $8.3 billion as of 2016.
He is also a prominent donor of the Clinton Health Access Initiative.
To this the response by Desai is a very simple one: “Unless Sheikh Mo has sent us a $6 million check, this sounds crazy to do.”
At this point, Bill Clinton’s former chief advisor and current president of the infamous Teneo Holding Doug Band, chimes in that it probably is a good idea: “If he doesn’t do it Chai will say he didn’t give the money bc of wjc.”
Finally, John Podesta chimes in: “I agree with Doug and this seems rather easy and harmless and not a big time sink.”
* * *
And that is how pay-2- play, or rather pay-2-fly worked inside the Clinton foundation. Incideintally here are Bill and “Sheikh Mo” caught at just the right moment.
One can only wonder in addition to the quid-pro-quo of flying to Ethiopia but only in exchange for $6 million, just what other favors were exchanged between the Clinton Foundation and either the Saudi billionaire or other prominent foundation donors.
Date: 2011-11-22 22:07
Subject: Re: Talking points for President Clinton and the Sheik
I agree with Doug and this seems rather easy and harmless and not a big time sink.
On Tue, Nov 22, 2011 at 6:13 PM, Doug Band <email@example.com> wrote:
> If he doesn’t do it
> Chai will say he didn’t give the money bc of wjc
> From: Amitabh Desai [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
> Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2011 06:06 PM
> To: Bruce Lindsey <email@example.com>; Doug Band;
> firstname.lastname@example.org <email@example.com>
> Cc: Terry Krinvic 2
> Subject: Fw: Talking points for President Clinton and the Sheik
> Unless Sheikh Mo has sent us a $6 million check, this sounds crazy to do.
> From: Ira Magaziner
> To: John.Podesta@gmail.com <John.Podesta@gmail.com>; Doug Band – PC; Bruce
> Lindsey; Amitabh Desai; Terry Krinvic
> Sent: Tue Nov 22 18:02:33 2011
> Subject: FW: Talking points for President Clinton and the Sheik
> CHAI would like to request that President Clinton call Sheik Mohammed to
> thank him for offering his plane to the conference in Ethiopia and
> expressing regrets that President Clinton’s schedule does not permit him to
> attend the conference.
> Ed Wood has prepared a briefing memo for President Clinton about the call
> which is attached.
> Please contact either Ed or me if you have any questions or if you need
> anything else from us.
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