Nearly half of ‘foreign policy experts’ who signed letter seeking more weapons for Ukraine are tied to lucrative defense industry
07/20/2023 // JD Heyes // Views

The Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft has noted that POLITICO has published an open letter, signed by "46 foreign policy experts" who called for increased arms shipments to Ukraine, without acknowledging the defense industry connections of nearly half the signatories, raising new concerns about potential conflicts of interest.

On June 5th, the news website POLITICO published an open letter titled "Ukraine Needs a Roadmap to NATO Membership ASAP," advocating for Western leaders attending the NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, to pledge their support in providing Ukraine with an ample supply of weapons, fighter jets, and tanks in “sufficient quantities to prevail on the battlefield," as reported by Breitbart News.

The letter pushed Western leaders to help facilitate a “comprehensive transition” of weapons and systems being utilized in the war against Russia to “NATO standards."

“The focus should be on the transition to Western weapons systems; creation of a modern, NATO-compatible air and missile defense system; creation of a medical rehabilitation system for wounded soldiers, as well as a system for soldier reintegration into civilian life and a comprehensive demining effort,” the letter said.

While POLITICO provided a list of the 46 'foreign policy experts' who signed the open letter and claimed to have mentioned their "affiliations," the institute, which advocates for a less interventionist U.S. foreign policy, alleged that at least 21 of the signatories have undisclosed connections to the military-industrial complex and that POLITICO failed to note that.

The institute's Senior Advisor Eli Clifton, writing for Reasonable Statecraft, noted that “support for increasing Western military aid to Ukraine is not a view exclusively held by those with direct or indirect links to the weapons industry, but signatories of the letter are noticeably embedded in the financial umbrella of institutions and businesses with direct financial ties to some of the world’s largest weapons firms.”

Breitbart News added:

The very first signatory of the letter was Stephen E. Biegun, which the POLITICO website described only as a “former U.S. deputy secretary of state,” while failing to mention that he also currently serves as a senior vice president of global public policy at Boeing, one of the largest weapons and military hardware producers in the world.

Boeing’s website lists Beigun’s role as being “responsible for advising and executing on Boeing’s global public policy matters in support of the company’s priorities and optimizing relationships with key stakeholders in the U.S. and around the world. He is also a member of the company’s Executive Council.”

Ret. Gen. Wesley Clark, who commanded the NATO bombing campaign of Yugoslavia during the Kosovo War, known as Operation Allied Force, was another signatory whose defense industry connections were reportedly disregarded.

The article describes Clark as a “U.S. Army, 12th Supreme Allied Commander, Europe; senior fellow at the UCLA Burkle Center” while leaving out the fact that he is a senior board and company adviser at Vaya Space, which said that the retired four-star general was hired to “support investment in and expansion of Vaya Space’s new technologies to the highly attractive Space (launch) and Defense (strategic and tactical missile) landscape.”

The think tank's investigation further pointed out that several signatories hold positions at the Atlantic Council think tank, which receives partial funding from major American arms manufacturers such as Boeing, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Raytheon.

"One such example noted by the publication was ex-George W. Bush diplomat Paula Dobriansky, who was merely described by POLITICO as 'Former under-secretary of state for global affairs,' despite her now serving as the Vice Chair of the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security," Breitbart News reported.

The American power elite are not going to be happy until Russia and the U.S. are at war.

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