Iran-Contra Figure Appointed to National Security Council Position

Iran-Contra figure Elliott Abrams, who pleaded guilty to withholding information from Congress and was pardoned by the former President Bush,
now has a job under the new President Bush…Bush’s national security adviser,
Condoleezza Rice, announced Abrams’ appointment — which does not require Senate confirmation — on Thursday, June 28, three days after he started the job.

WASHINGTON — Iran-Contra figure Elliott Abrams, who pleaded guilty to withholding information from Congress and was pardoned by the former
President Bush, now has a job under the new President Bush.

"The president has confidence in Elliott Abrams, " White House press secretary Ari Fleischer said Friday, adding that Abrams is well-qualified to be senior director of the National Security Council’s office for democracy, human rights and international operations.

As for Abrams’ role in the Iran-Contra scandal during the 1980s, Fleischer told reporters: "The president thinks that’s a matter of
the past . . . and that he will do an outstanding job in this position. "

Bush’s national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, announced Abrams’ appointment — which does not require Senate confirmation — on Thursday, three days after he started the job.

Abrams, an assistant secretary of State during the Reagan administration, was a fierce advocate of armed support for Nicaraguan rebels despite
Congress’ ban on military aid to the so-called Contras.

He pleaded guilty in 1991 to two misdemeanor counts of withholding information from Congress. In court, he admitted that he kept information
from two congressional committees in 1986 when he testified about his knowledge of the secret Contra supply network and his role in soliciting a
$10 million contribution for the Contras from the Sultan of Brunei.

Former President Bush pardoned Abrams in 1992.

Abrams’ new appointment infuriated some students of U.S policy in Latin America. "It’s a cosmic joke on the part of the administration to
appoint to an office on democracy this person who has shown almost unequaled contempt for
democratic procedures, both in his own personal behavior as an office holder and in the way he treated societies in Latin America, " said Larry Birns, director of the Council on Hemispheric Affairs.

Author: Associated Press

News Service: Salt Lake Tribune

URL: http://www.egroups.com/group/antiimf2000