In an ever-widening scandal involving a Taiwanese government
secret "slush fund," the purpose of which was to covertly influence other
countries' (including the United States and Japan) politics, leaked Taiwanese
government documents name two Bush appointees as receiving money from this
"slush fund" for services, including convincing Bush to agree to $4 billion
worth of sophisticated arms sales to Taiwan.
Carl Ford, appointed by GW Bush to assistant secretary of defense
for intelligence and research, and James Kelly, appointed by GW Bush to assistant
secretary of state for East Asia, are the American officials named as being
"paid off" to covertly influence U.S. politics. Their efforts included accepting
millions from this secret slush-fund, and it appears that this money may
have been, at least in part, funneled by contributions made by Carl Ford
(while working for a Washington PR firm, Cassidy and Associates) to the GW
Bush presidential campaign and the Republican National Committee.
In eye-opening revelations which have shocked Taiwan, and set
Washington panicking over the "radioactive" political fall-out from these
covert Taiwanese efforts (aided by Bush "administration" officials) to influence
* The "slush fund" was set up by Taiwan's ex-president Lee
Teng-hui through the Taiwan National Security Bureau. Lee, although no longer
president, is still very active in Taiwanese politics.
* It is reported that there were two secret slush funds which
contained NT$3.5 billion.
* The purpose of these two slush funds was to buy political
favors overseas, including in the United States and Japan.
* Carl Ford, as a "key player" in Cassidy and Associates, was
paid from this secret slush fund, and is said to have played a "pivotal role,"
as Bush's appointed assistant secretary of defense for intelligence and research,
in convincing Bush to allow the $4billion sale of sophisticated arms to Taiwan.
He is said to have been paid "handsomely," according to leaked Taiwanese
* Carl Ford, an ex-CIA official and a former prominent defense
official in the Reagan/Bush Sr. administrations, was also a lobbyist for
General Dynamics (specifically for the sale of sophisticated arms to Taiwan).
General Dynamics stood to greatly benefit from the sale of submarines to
Taiwan; the submarines would be built in a General Dynamics' company's
* Carl Ford is noted as a Cassidy and Associates' "key player."
When Cassidy and Associates was hired by General Dynamics (owner of Bath
Iron Works where the destroyers to be sold to Taiwan would be built), Cassidy
conceived of and drafted the letter sent by U.S. Senator Trent Lott (Republican)
to President Clinton. This letter basically held hostage congressional approval
of permanent normal trade relations with China until Clinton approved the
weapons sale, to which President Clinton was strongly opposed.
* Carl Ford, as a "key player" in Cassidy and Associates, was
directly involved (in addition to the covert money they received from the
Taiwanese slush fund) in acknowledged, contracted PR work for Taiwan interests.
Again, the one of the specific goals was to influence America to sell Taiwan
$4 billion worth of sophisticated arms.
* Carl Ford, when testifying before Congress and trying to
convince it to sell arms to Taiwan, was said to be "from the Heritage
Foundation." The Heritage Foundation is a right wing group, funded in part
by Richard Mellon Scaife, and led by right wing power-broker Paul
* Carl Ford, a GW Bush appointee to a very influential position,
while a "key player" for Cassidy and Associates, had already been involved
in another lobbying scandal in Taiwan. This scandal included Cassidy's attempts
to cover up the identities of those companies and lobbyists providing
public-relations and lobbying services for Taiwan in Taiwan's efforts to
get the U.S. government to pass the bill which would allow America to sell
sophisticated arms to Taiwan.
* Carl Ford was a "key player" in the Washington PR firm, Cassidy
and Associates, which contracted with Taiwanese organizations to represent
Taiwan's interests in Washington. Cassidy and Associates also received money
from the secret Taiwanese slush fund, the purpose of which was to covertly
influence other countries' politics. It is of note, then, that the head of
Cassidy and Associates met with Taiwan's then-president Lee Teng-hui (who
started the Taiwanese slush fund) where plans were made to lobby then-Texas
Governor Bush, because Bush was seen as the most promising presidential
candidate. The purpose, again, was to convince GW Bush, if he became president,
to allow America to sell sophisticated arms to Taiwan. It is noteworthy that,
indeed, GW Bush, once in the Oval Office, was a vocal proponent for allowing
America to sell sophisticated arms to Taiwan. The Taiwanese slush-fund's
efforts paid off when American policy was changed such that sophisticated
arms are now permitted to be sold to Taiwan.
* How important was GW Bush-appointee Carl Ford to Taiwan?
Ford was said to be an important Taiwan lobbyist who was allegedly wined
and dined to the tune of NT$400,000 in late 1999 and early 2000 by the Lee
Teng-hui Taiwanese administration.
* Cassidy and Associates received millions from this Taiwanese
secret slush fund. Carl Ford, described as a "key player" at Cassidy, in
turn donated millions of dollars to the GW Bush presidential campaign and
to the Republican National Committee.
* James Kelly came directly from heading the Richard Mellon
Scaife-funded Pacific Forum (connected to the military-industry "think-tank"
Centre for Strategic and International Studies, or "CSIS") to being appointed
by GW Bush as assistant secretary of state to East Asia. While heading the
Pacific Forum, Kelly is said to have "shuffled funds" (money-laundering?)
between Taiwan's slush funds and Japan.
* In addition, Kelly is reported to have accepted donations
from Taiwan for CSIS' Pacific Forum. That's right: Kelly came directly from
being responsible to accepting money from Taiwan interests to being appointed
by GW Bush to a key government position in which Kelly would be a chief policy
maker for Asia.
* The Taiwan news publications who originally broke the Taiwanese
slush-fund story had their offices raided by Taiwanese government officials
who called the publications traitors and treasonous. After an outcry arose
from the public, the Taiwanese government has backed down and now says that
free speech must be protected.
* The three leaked Taiwanese government documents about the
secret slush fund are reported to contain: 1) Details about Taiwan's unofficial
"slush-fund" diplomatic maneuvers in the US, including the meeting between
the originator of the slush-fund, Taiwan's ex-president Lee, and the head
of Cassidy and Associates, a Washington PR group, with the goal of influencing
then-Texas Governor GW Bush in the event that Bush should he become president;
2) A second document identifies Carl W. Ford, now Bush-appointed assistant
secretary of state for intelligence and research, as an important figure
in Taiwan's lobbying efforts (covert and registered), the Sing Tao Daily
said. 3) The third document records visits by Carl Ford to Taiwan's NSB in
November 1999 and March 2000, Sing Tao said, adding that the NSB spent more
than NT$400,000 entertaining Ford during the visits.
* How bad is it going to be for America, thanks to these two
Bush appointees' covert actions on behalf of the Taiwanese government? These
Bush appointees, in the headlines of an important Taipei newspaper, are reported
to be "tainted lobbyists." Tainted. Bush-appointed American officials are
said to be tainted.
* What will be the American political fall-out from these tainted
Bush-appointed officials? Consider this: The current Taiwanese presidential
senior advisor, Yao Chia-wen, who recently came to the Washington for two
days of meetings with U.S. think tanks and congressional aides to find out
what the fallout will be from this scandal, received in these meetings the
message, "Fear what is to come." Think-tank scholars voiced concern that
as new names are made public, those who speak out in favor of Taiwan may
be suspected of having "sold out" as potential recipients of some of the
NT$3.5 billion in money allegedly set aside in two secret slush funds intended
to buy political favors overseas. The fears of the Washington congressional
aids and think-tank personnel is that if anyone in any way represents Taiwan's
agenda, they will become "radioactive" and a Washington pariah.
* How will this impact the U.S.-Taiwan relations? Terribly.
It already has. The revelations have damaged Taiwan-American relations, even
forcing Taiwan to suspend some programs: "The exposures of such secret payments
to key US politicians by the island's National Security Bureau (NSB) in the
past week by Hong Kong and Taiwan media has damaged Taiwan's image and hurt
its exchanges with the United States, according to government officials and
analysts. 'The exposure of these secret funds of the NSB has created a big
problem to our diplomatic work,' said Foreign Minister Eugene Chien yesterday.
Taiwan's deputy representative to the US, Mr Tsai Ming-hsien, admitted that
a number of semi-official and official exchange programmes between Taiwan
and the US have been suspended."
Comment: So we see that America is, once again, humiliated
by GW Bush's tainted appointees. This time, however, there appears to be
the possibility that Bush's appointees, indeed, served as money-launderers
for the Republican National Committee and the GW Bush presidential campaign.
Certainly, with Bush's tainted appointees, and their reported role as being
"pivotal" in Bush's decision to sell $4 billion worth of sophisticated arms
to Taiwan, it should bring into question whether America's best interests
were served in this decision, or were the best interests of GW Bush's Taiwanese
slush-fund contributors actually that which were being served?
It also brings under new consideration the opposition of the
Republican Party and GW Bush to any form of campaign finance reform. If they
are, indeed, receiving illegal campaign funds from a Chinese covert slush-fund,
they would hardly be likely to ever back accountability for legitimate campaign
In addition, this ugly Taiwan-U.S.-Bush-appointee campaign
finance scandal brings up another question which Americans, and Congress,
must address: What are the implications of having GW Bush in the Oval Office
if he has received such considerable illegal campaign contributions from
a covert Taiwanese slush fund? And what does his appointment of two men highly
involved in the distribution of the Taiwanese slush-fund monies have to say
about the "honor and integrity" he promised to bring to the White House?
Finally, we must consider the conflict-of-interest-laden
appointments GW Bush has made, including that of Army Secretary Thomas White,
who is now under at least three investigations for his unethical conduct
since he was appointed by GW Bush. Who is it that GW Bush is really serving:
the American people or his campaign contributors? And can America stand the
damage it will incur as GW Bush seeks to fulfill the quid pro quos he owes
to his campaign funders (both acknowledged, like Enron, and covert, like
the apparent Taiwanese secret slush fund)?