Thursday, May 14, 1998

Clinton's global crime plan

The Clinton administration this week announced a comprehensive plan to target the growing power of sophisticated international organized crime syndicates.

It's called the International Crime Control Strategy, which identifies the major global threats to the United States as drug trafficking, acquisition or sale of weapons of mass destruction by criminal, the transfer of sensitive U.S. technology to rogue foreign states and trafficking in women and children.

Drug trafficking? Transfer of sensitive technology? Trafficking in women? These are certainly areas in which the Clinton administration has expertise. He has long associated with drug dealers, even pardoning one as governor, and his connections to activity at Mena Airport in Arkansas has long been a matter of suspicion. As president he was responsible for perhaps the single most serious transfer of sensitive technology since Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, with his approval of the sale of missile guidance systems to China. And, as far as trafficking in women, does it count when it's for your own use?

Seriously, folks, if I didn't know better I would think this plan, announced at this moment, was a practical joke -- an idea worthy of "Saturday Night Live."

If the administration is serious about stamping out organized crime, it could begin by cleaning out its own house. Here's just a partial, quickie list of the felony convictions in and around Bill Clinton since he took office: Webster Hubbell, Jim McDougal, Susan McDougal, Gov. Jim Guy Tucker, David Hale, Robert W. Palmer, Chris Wade, Neal T. Ainley, Henry Espy, Michael Brown, Eugene Lum, Nora Lum and Johnny Chung.

Then there are those indicted or targeted for indictment: Ron Brown, Herby Branscum, Mike Espy, Henry Cisneros, Archie Schaefer, Charlie Trie, Maria Hsia, Nolanda Hill, Bruce Babbitt, Ron Carey, Monica Lewinsky and Webster Hubbell (again).

Then come the executive privilege claims: Bruce Lindsey, Sidney Blumenthal, Hillary Clinton, Secret Service agents and James Hamilton.

Let's not forget about Clinton's criminal associates -- from Jorge Cabrera to Dan Lasater to Wang Jun.

And, perhaps, the biggest benchmark of criminal conspiracy -- the Fifth Amendment pleadings and refusal to answer under oath: Susan McDougal, Susan Thomases, Webster Hubbell (again), Maggie Williams, Bruce Lindsey, Hillary Clinton, John Huang, Johnny Chung, David Wang, Keshi Zhan, Gin F.J. Chen, Siuw Moi Lian, Yi Chu, Mark Middleton, Seow Fong Ooi, Bin Ue Jeng, Hsiu Chu Lin, Larry Wong, Duangnet Kronenberg, Jen Chin Hsueh, Na-chi "Nancy" Lee, Chi Rung Wang, Hueutsan Huang, Jou Sheng, Yue Chu, Yogesh Ghandi, Judy Hsu, Man Ho, Steven Hwang, Jane Dewi Tahir, Manlin Foung, Gilbert Colon, Maria Mapili, Yumei Yang, Irene Wu, Jie Su Hsaio, Mike Lin, Hsiu Luan Tseng, Hsin Chen Shi, Zie Pan Huang, Mark Jiminez, Shu Jen Wu, Michael Brown, Woody Hwang, Charles Intriago, Simon Chen, Sioeng Fei Man, Jessica Elinitiarta, Kent La, Craig Livingstone.

Speaking of international criminal syndicates, there are the foreign witnesses refusing to answer: Ng Lap Seng, Stephan Riady, Roy Tirtadji, Ken Hsui, John Mucy, James Lin, Eugene Wu, Mochtar Riady, Stanley Ho, Suma Ching Hai, James Riady, Daniel Wu, Ambrose Hsuing, Lay Kweek Wie, Li Kwai Fai, Bruce Cheung.

And, of course, those avoiding testimony by fleeing the country: Elizabeth Ward Gracen, Pauline Kanchanalak, Ming Chen, Antonio Pan, John H.K. Lee, Aug Setiawan, Ted Sioeng, Dewi Tirto, Subandi Tanuwidjaja, Sorya Wiriadinata, Felix Ma, Susanto Tanuwidjaja, Suryant Tanuwidjaja, Subandi Tanuwidjaja, Yanti Ardi, Nanny Nitiarta, Yopie Elnitiarta, Maureen Elinitiarta, Sandra Elinitiarta, Sundari Elnitiarta.

Of course, there are lots more name we could add -- the suicides, the murders, the accident victims, those who have been harassed and intimidated for daring to cross the administration. ... It all begins to look suspiciously like a pattern of racketeering, organized crime, a mob-style operation.

My first thought upon reading of Clinton's plan is that the initiative sounds more like a way to rub out the competition. It sounds like there's going to be a good, old-fashioned gang war.

If I were an international organized crime figure not paying sufficient tribute to Don Clinton, I'd be nervous. It looks like the Godfather is getting ready to make a move.

Joseph Farah is editor of the Internet newspaper and executive director of the Western Journalism Center, an independent group of investigative reporters.
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