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Is Jared Kushner Literally in Bed with the Saudis?

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From Informed Comment

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The Guardian's Jon Swain broke the story on Monday that Cadre, a real estate investment firm in which Jared Kushner has as much as a $50 million stake, has received a mysterious $90 million infusion of cash from unknown and possibly foreign sources. At least $1 million came in from Saudi Arabia, according to Swain.

Goldman Sachs transferred the investments through the Turks & Caicos islands, the Switzerland of the Caribbean.

Kushner at first neglected to declare his Cadre investment, when he was put forward for a government position. Later he did so, saying that the failure to declare had been a simple oversight.

He reduced his shares in Cadre to 25%, keeping $25-$50 million as an active investment rather than a blind trust.

In 2017, he kept being denied a security clearance until a Trump political appointee made DHS accept his application. The issue had been that the intel agencies could not rule out foreign influence through their investments with Kushner.

It is not the first time such doubts were raised by Kushner. On the eve of the Trumps' visit to Israel last year, his family real estate firm received a $30 million investment from the Israeli forum Menora Mevtachim.

In office as the president's special envoy to the Middle East, Kushner has helped cultivate strong administration ties to Saudi Arabia and Israel, and to lobby both of them for Kushner's "Deal of a Century" on the Palestine issue. Some Palestinians are calling it the "steal of a century." It is troubling that Kushner is dealing that part of the world using his own money.

Bonus video:

Channel 4 News: "Jared Kushner: power hungry and intent on enriching himself?"

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Juan Cole is an American academic and commentator on the modern Middle East and South Asia.  He is Richard P. Mitchell Collegiate Professor of History at the University of Michigan. Since 2002, he has written a weblog, Informed Comment (more...)

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