Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Malaysian PM to Abramoff to Rove To Bush: Republican $1.2 Million Touchdown

WaPo: Ex-Malaysia PM: Abramoff Was Paid $1.2M

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia -- Former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said disgraced U.S. lobbyist Jack Abramoff was paid $1.2 million to organize a meeting between him and President Bush in 2002, but denied the money came from the Malaysian government.


In a report last week, The Los Angeles Times said that Abramoff received $1.2 million from the Malaysian government for his lobbying services in 2001 and 2002.

According to the Times, which cited an unnamed former Abramoff associate who attended meetings with the Malaysian ambassador and the lobbyist, Abramoff allegedly contacted presidential adviser Karl Rove at least four times to help arrange a meeting between Mahathir and Bush, which took place in May 2002 in the Oval Office.

Mahathir visited the White House at a time when Malaysia had emerged as a key U.S. ally in the war on terror, following Mahathir's crackdown on suspected Islamic militants. However, Mahathir had been consistently critical of Bush's foreign policies, and chastised by the West for his anti-Semitic comments and human rights record.

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