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Thread: Who Is John F. Lehman?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Who Is John F. Lehman?

    Who Is John F. Lehman?

    Thanks to

    December 16, 2002: Members of 9/11 Commission Have Potential Conflicts of Interest
    The ten members of the new 9/11 Commission are appointed by this date, and are: Republicans Thomas Kean (Chairman), Slade Gorton, James Thompson, Fred Fielding, and John Lehman, and Democrats Lee Hamilton (Vice Chairman), Max Cleland, Tim Roemer, Richard Ben-Veniste, and Jamie Gorelick. [Chicago Tribune, 12/12/2002; Associated Press, 12/16/2002; New York Times, 12/17/2002] Senators Richard Shelby (R) and John McCain (R) had a say in the choice of one of the Republican positions. They and many 9/11 victims’ relatives wanted former Senator Warren Rudman (R), who cowrote an acclaimed report about terrorism before 9/11. But Senate Republican leader Trent Lott blocks Rudman’s appointment and chooses John Lehman instead. [St. Petersburg Times, 12/12/2002; Associated Press, 12/13/2002; Reuters, 12/16/2002] It slowly emerges over the next several months that at least six of the ten commissioners have ties to the airline industry. [CBS News, 3/5/2003] Henry Kissinger (see December 13, 2002) and his replacement Thomas Kean (see December 16, 2002) both caused controversy when they were named. In addition, the other nine members of the commission are later shown to all have potential conflicts of interest. Republican commissioners:
    • Fred Fielding also works for a law firm lobbying for Spirit Airlines and United Airlines. [Associated Press, 2/14/2003; CBS News, 3/5/2003]
    • Slade Gorton has close ties to Boeing, which built all the planes destroyed on 9/11, and his law firm represents several major airlines, including Delta Airlines. [Associated Press, 12/12/2002; CBS News, 3/5/2003]
    • John Lehman, former secretary of the Navy, has large investments in Ball Corp., which has many US military contracts. [Associated Press, 3/27/2003]
    • James Thompson, former Illinois governor, is the head of a law firm that lobbies for American Airlines, and he has previously represented United Airlines. [Associated Press, 1/31/2003; CBS News, 3/5/2003] Democratic commissioners:
    • Richard Ben-Veniste represents Boeing and United Airlines. [CBS News, 3/5/2003] Ben-Veniste also has other curious connections, according to a 2001 book on CIA ties to drug running written by Daniel Hopsicker, which has an entire chapter called “Who is Richard Ben-Veniste?” Lawyer Ben-Veniste, Hopsicker says, “has made a career of defending political crooks, specializing in cases that involve drugs and politics.” Ben-Veniste has been referred to in print as a “Mob lawyer,” and was a long-time lawyer for Barry Seal, one of the most famous drug dealers in US history who also is alleged to have had CIA connections. [Hopsicker, 2001, pp. 325-30]
    • Max Cleland, former US senator, has received $300,000 from the airline industry. [CBS News, 3/5/2003]
    • James Gorelick is a director of United Technologies, one of the Pentagon’s biggest defense contractors and a supplier of engines to airline manufacturers. [Associated Press, 3/27/2003]
    • Lee Hamilton sits on many advisory boards, including those to the CIA, the president’s Homeland Security Advisory Council, and the US Army. [Associated Press, 3/27/2003]
    • Tim Roemer represents Boeing and Lockheed Martin. [CBS News, 3/5/2003]

    May 19, 2004: 9/11 Commission Reaches Self-Confessed ‘Low Point’ in Giuliani Questioning
    The first day of the 9/11 Commission’s eleventh public hearing in New York produces an adverse reaction in the New York press, due to questioning of former city officials by Commissioner John Lehman. The second day is begun by former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, whose opening statement draws considerable applause from the audience and who won Time magazine’s Person of the Year award for 2001. [Time, 12/22/2001; Kean and Hamilton, 2006, pp. 226-228] According to Commission Chairman Thomas Kean and Co-chairman Lee Hamilton, “Each commissioner opens his or her questioning with lavish praise.” For instance, Richard Ben-Veniste: “Your leadership on that day and in the days following gave the rest of the nation, and indeed the world, an unvarnished view of the indomitable spirit and the humanity of this great city, and for that I salute you.” Jim Thompson thanks him for “setting an example to us all.” John Lehman: “There was no question the captain was on the bridge.” Kean: “New York City on that terrible day in a sense was blessed because it had you as a leader.” This draws a mixed reaction from the audience, some of whom support Giuliani and some of whom want “real questions.” Kean and Hamilton will later say that: “The questioning of Mayor Giuliani was a low point in terms of the commission’s questioning of witnesses at our public hearings. We did not ask tough questions, nor did we get all of the information we needed to put on the public record. We were affected by the controversy over Lehman’s comments, and by the excellent quality of the mayor’s presentation.” [Kean and Hamilton, 2006, pp. 228-231]
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG

  2. #2
    simuvac Guest
    I prefer this profile:

    Former Secretary of the Navy John Lehman served as a member of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, the "independent, bipartisan commission" that was "chartered to prepare a full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, including preparedness for and the immediate response to the attacks." (16) As was often apparent during the committee hearings, Lehman is a right-wing ideologue and militarist, who as a commissioner was the most dependable supporter of the Bush administration.

    During his four decades in government and in the military-industrial complex, Lehman has established himself as a threat escalator who has ignored the facts and resorted to fear-mongering and alarmism in the interest of bolstering military spending and increasing U.S. military overseas operations to raise alarms about threats to U.S. national security. In the late 1970s, Lehman joined the Committee on the Present Danger, a coalition of liberal hawks, neoconservatives, and militarists who called for an end to the politics of détente and a major increase in the U.S. military budget. The Committee on the Present Danger relied on the threat assessments of Team B, an independent group of militarists who disputed the CIA's National Intelligence Estimates, which were regarded as being naïve with regard to Soviet imperial ambitions and imminent threats to U.S. national security.

    At a time when the staff reports from the 9/11 commission and most of the media were dismissing the Bush administration's continuing assertions about the links between al Qaeda and the Saddam Hussein government, Lehman told NBC's "Meet the Press" on June 20 that the commission had documents captured in Iraq that "indicate that there is at least one officer of Saddam's Fedayeen, a lieutenant colonel, who was a very prominent member of al-Qaeda." Lehman succeeded in giving new life to the administration's claims, although the CIA quickly dismissed the assertion saying that the documents did not support Lehman's allegation. In fact, the CIA had investigated this alleged link "a long time ago" and concluded that one officer in Hussein's militia merely had a name that was similar to an al-Qaeda operative. However, Lehman claimed on national television that it was new information, as yet unexamined by the commission or other government entities. (17) (18) (22)

    On the day that the 9-11 terrorism commission heard testimony on the allegations that a group of Saudi nationals, including members of the Bin Laden family, were granted special permission to leave the United States for Saudi Arabia immediately following the terrorist attacks, Lehman had no questions. However, he did aggressively question former counterterrorism chief Richard Clarke at the hearings, winning favor with the administration and its supporters. (9) (14)

    Since his days as a member of the Committee on the Present Danger and as a high official in the Reagan administration, Lehman has long been a critic of the CIA. Like other right-wing critics of the CIA, Lehman has long believed that the CIA has consistently underestimated national security threats and, like the State Department, preferred diplomacy over direct U.S. military action. During the commission hearings, Lehman repeatedly sided with the Bush administration's interpretations of events before and after the 9/11 attacks and called for an overhaul of the U.S. intelligence system, presumably along the lines advocated by neoconservative critics of the CIA who believe that liberals and "Arabists" form the core of the CIA and State Department. (19) (20) Closely associated with the neoconservatives, Lehman signed what were perhaps the two most influential statements produced by the Project for the New American Century-the one sent to President Bush nine days after the 9/11 attacks outlining their agenda for the war on terrorism and the one produced in April 2003 that sketched out a post-Iraq invasion plan for the Middle East with Israel at its center. (23)

    Before joining the Reagan team, Lehman was president of the Abington Corporation, a lobbying firm that once employed a fellow neocon, Richard Perle. In his later role as assistant secretary of defense, Perle was able to lobby for an Israeli arms manufacturer and receive close to $90,000 for his efforts. (14) Abington Corporation received subcontracts from such large defense contractors as Northrop Corporation, Boeing, and TRW. (15) As Secretary of the Navy during the Reagan administration, Lehman advocated an expansionist policy for the Navy, and he was a strong advocate of a more aggressive nuclear weapons policy. In 1982, as the nuclear freeze movement gained force, the hawkish Lehman wrote an article in the Conservative Digest, tiled "Bishops' Nuclear Stance Encourages War," which criticized the religious community's implicit support of the nuclear freeze movement. (15) At the time Lehman was Navy secretary, his brother, Christopher Lehman, also an arch-conservative, served as an aide to National Security Adviser William P. Clark, Jr. (15)

    Lehman, an aggressive proponent of an expanded military-including his goal of having the Navy deploy 600 ships, made numerous enemies within the Reagan administration because of his uncompromising positions. Although serving as deputy director of the arms control agency and representing the U.S. government in critical arms control negotiations, Lehman was a critic of international arms control agreements that restricted U.S. military build-ups and nuclear weapons options.

    Under pressure, he resigned his post in the Reagan administration in 1987, and took a job as managing director of Paine Weber. (15) Lehman is the chairman of J.F. Lehman & Co., an investment firm specializing in aerospace, weapons, and marine sectors. The company has a majority or controlling interest in McCormick Selph, Inc., which manufactures systems and components for military aircraft and tactical missiles, and in Accudyne Corporation, which manufactures marine munitions for the U.S. military. Lehman is also chairman of OAO Technology Solutions, which describes itself as "a subcontractor to global outsourcers." (23)

    Lehman, a former member of the Committee on the Present Danger, also sits on the board of the Center for Security Policy and is a signatory for the Project for the New American Century. (7) (8) (10) Lehman has also been associated with other right-wing or conservative organizations, including Foreign Policy Research Institute, Heritage Foundation, and Center for Strategic and International Studies. (15) Lehman's ties to the right wing date back to his student days when he was a member of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI), which was founded in 1952 by William Buckley. As a graduate student at Georgetown University, Lehman roomed with Edwin Feulner, another ISI member, who became the president of the Heritage Foundation. (21)

    In 2001 Lehman edited the Foreign Policy Research Institute book, America the Vulnerable, along with FPRI President Harvey Sicherman. In it they cautioned against weakening U.S. military capacity and portraying the military as the "linchpin of security" for both Europe and Asia. (11) (12) (13) Lehman has authored several books, including Command of the Seas, Making War, and On Seas of Glory. Lehman has been an outspoken proponent of U.S military supremacy and preemptive military strikes on "violent, Islamic fundamentalism." (22)

  3. #3
    simuvac Guest
    Institutional Affiliations
    Center for Security Policy: National Security Advisory Council Member (8)
    Foreign Policy Research Institute (University of Pennsylvania): Member of Board of Trustees (5); Co-Chairman of Defense Task Force (1996-2000) (6); Staff Member (1967-1969); former vice-president (3) (15)
    Project for the New American Century Letter on War on Terrorism: Signatory (2001) (7)
    Project for the New American Century Letter on Israel, Arafat, and War on Terrorism: Signatory (2002) (7)
    Committee on the Present Danger: Member (10)
    Cambridge University Gonville and Caius College: Honorary Fellow (1)
    Princess Grace Foundation USA: Chairman (1)
    OpSail Foundation: Director (1)
    University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering: Member of Board of Overseers (1)
    LaSalle College High School: Trustee (1)
    Heritage Foundation: Washington Policy Roundtable Meetings, participant; Resource Bank, alumnus (15)
    Government Posts/Panels/Commissions

    National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States: Commissioner (2002-current) (1, 2)
    U.S. Department of Defense: Secretary of the Navy (1981-1987) (1); National Security Council: Special Counsel and Senior Staff Member to Kissinger (1969-1974) (1, 3)
    Force Reductions Negotiations: Delegate (1974-1975) (1, 3)
    U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency: Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer (1975-1977) (1, 3)
    National Security Council: Member (1969-74) (15)
    Corporate Connections/Business Interests
    J.F.Lehman and Company: Founding Partner, Managing Principal and Chairman (1, 4)
    OAO Technology Solutions: Chairman (1)
    Ball Corporation: Director (1987-current) (1, 3)
    Sperry Marine, Inc.: Former Chairman (1993-1996) (3)
    Insurance Services Office: Director (1)
    SDI Inc.: Director (1)
    Elgar Inc.: Director (1)
    Racal Instruments, Inc.: Director (1)
    Paribas Affaires Industrielles: Advisory Board Member (1)
    Paine Webber Inc.: Investment Banker (1)
    Abington Corporation: President (1977-1981) (1)
    St. Joseph's University: B.S. (1)
    Cambridge University: B.A.; M.A. (1)
    University of Pennsylvania: Ph.D. (1)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    As I said... not the end all/be all...
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG

  5. #5
    simuvac Guest
    Also, and notably:

    From 1974 to 1975, Mr. Lehman served as counsel and senior staff member to Dr. Henry Kissinger and the National Security Council. He was a staff member between 1969 and 1971. From 1967 to 1969, Mr. Lehman was a staff member to the Foreign Policy Research Institute at the University of Pennsylvania.

    So, Kissinger wasn't the executive director of the 9/11 Commission, but his former senior staffer was a commissioner.

  6. #6
    simuvac Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Gold9472
    As I said... not the end all/be all...
    I just don't like this guy, so I thought I would add some.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Quote Originally Posted by simuvac
    I just don't like this guy, so I thought I would add some.
    That's what it's here for. I'm just trying to give people a foundation from which to build upon.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG

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