Book Summary and Analysis |

History, Philosophy, Politics and Society



A Summary and Critique of
Peter Schweizer’s
Clinton Cash
The Untold Story of How and Why
Foreign Governments and Businesses
Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich

by I.K. Mullins

Copyright©2015 I.K. Mullins. All Rights Reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or retransmitted in any form or by any means without the written permission of the author.

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1. The Clinton Foundation

Hillary Clinton officially joined the Clinton Foundation in 2013 after she left the U.S. State Department. In the same year, the foundation was renamed the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation. The Clinton Foundation, which accepts financial support from foreign governments, became a political challenge for Hillary Clinton at the time she entered her second presidential campaign.

Schweizer’s Clinton Cash investigates donations made to the Clinton Foundation by foreign entities. Schweizer writes in his book that he can see a pattern of financial transactions that involved the Clinton Foundation, as well as the Clintons, and took place concurrently with U.S. policy decisions favoring the entities who provided the funds for the transactions.

In his book, Schweizer refers to a controversial story of how during Bill Clinton’s final days in office, Clinton pardoned Marc Rich, a billionaire, oil trader and financier, who was on the FBI’s Most Wanted List. This story drew public attention and criticism because the pardon was announced after Denise, Rich’s ex-wife, donated 450,000 dollars to the Clinton Library, 109,000 dollars to the Senate campaign of Hillary Clinton, and 1 million dollars to the Democratic Party.

Schweizer reports in his book that Bill Clinton’s biggest payments after he left office came from foreign governments, businesses and investors. He uses a free-trade agreement in Colombia as an example, arguing that the agreement profited the investments of a major donor of the Clinton Foundation. Schweizer also investigates the development projects in the period immediately following the Haitian earthquake in 2010 and the payments in a total amount exceeding 1 million dollars that were made to Bill Clinton by a Canadian bank and major shareholder in the Keystone XL oil pipeline when the project was debated in the State Department.

According to Schweizer’s research, the Clinton Foundation hid a foreign donation in the form of 2 million shares of stock that was made by a mining executive with business before the U.S. State Department when Hilary Clinton was Secretary of State. This incident is a violation of the Memorandum of Understanding with the Obama Administration.

Schweizer also emphasizes that the Clinton Foundation has been forced to re-file at least 5 years of tax returns.



2. Six-Figure Speaking Fees

Schweizer’s Clinton Cash alleges that foreign entities made payments to the Clinton Foundation and to Bill Clinton in the form of six-figure speaking fees in order to receive favors from the U.S. State Department when Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State. Schweizer finds it very disconcerting that there is an apparent correlation between the decisions made by Hillary Clinton during her four-year tenure as Secretary of State and 48 million dollars in speaking fees that were paid for Bill Clinton’s speeches over the same period.

Many of the speeches were paid for by individuals and corporations that had business pending before the U.S. State Department; more than half of this money was paid by companies from other countries, such as Canada, Russia, China, Japan, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and the Cayman Islands. For example, Schweizer observes that in 2011, Bill Clinton was paid half a million dollars to deliver a speech in Abu Dhabi one day before the United Arab Emirates’ foreign minister met with Hillary Clinton in the US.

Schweizer points out that Bill Clinton’s earnings from his appearance fees (in the US and abroad) went as high as 17 million dollars in 2012, when Hillary served her last year as Secretary of State.  (Bill Clinton’s speaking fees earned him 105 million dollars between 2001 and 2013.) Schweizer also observes that of all the 13 speeches that earned Bill Clinton half a million dollars and more (per speech), 11 speeches occurred when Hillary Clinton was serving as Secretary of State. For example, Schweizer finds that a Kremlin-linked bank paid Bill Clinton half a million dollars for a speech made in Moscow.

Former U.S. presidents are known for increasing their income through paid speeches and lectures. For example, Bill Clinton delivered speeches in front of groups of people who previously invited former president George W. Bush and/or his father, former president George H.W. Bush, to deliver speeches as well. However, Schweizer argues that the question of “post-presidential” income is different in the Clintons’ case because of the extent of their donor network and their personal and political activities.


3. Foreign Donations

One of the most troubling aspects discussed in Schweizer’s book is foreign donations to the Clinton Foundation. Schweizer argues that some of these donations may have put U.S. national security at risk.

Schweizer proposes in his book that Hillary Clinton changed her position with regards to an India-U.S. nuclear deal after receiving donations from several Indian influential people. Schweizer points out that Hillary Clinton had not been a supporter of the deal. [Actually, in June 2006, Clinton issued a press release where she announced her plan to support the legislation with restrictions that did not suit the Indian government’s position.] Schweizer tells that, in September 2008, Amar Singh met with Hillary Clinton in New York. In the days following that meeting, Singh said that he became confident the deal would go through.

Schweizer writes that Clinton foreign-policy adviser Joseph Wilson joined a company known for making deals with Sudanese warlords. Schweizer proposes that, in 2009, Stephen Dattels, a Canadian investor and a donor of the Clinton Foundation, got help from the State Department for a mining project in Bangladesh (the proof is in a cable posted on WikiLeaks). Schweizer alleges that Lukas Lundin, a Swedish mining magnate, who donated 100 million dollars to the Clinton Foundation in 2007, ran a profitable operation in the Democratic Republic of Congo because State Secretary Hillary Clinton did not implement reforms to promote Congolese democracy.

Schweizer also states that, in 2005, the Clinton Foundation received a 31 million dollars donation from the Uranium One chairman’s foundation after Bill Clinton aided them in acquiring uranium mines in Kazakhstan.  Schweizer writes in his book that, in 2005, Bill Clinton stepped up as an ambassador for low-cost treatment of HIV/AIDS in Kazakhstan, where infection rates are relatively low. Schweizer further informs readers that Kazakhstan has plenty of uranium and that a Canadian company led by a large donor of the Clinton Foundation acquired lucrative stakes in Kazakhstan’s uranium mines.

After a series of deals, Uranium One, the company that controlled uranium mines a few countries, was sold to Rosatom (the Russian atomic energy agency). Uranium One’s last deal involved uranium mines in Wyoming and required the approval of a U.S. government committee, which included Hillary Clinton’s State Department. The deal was approved, giving Rosatom control of a portion of uranium supplies in the US.

Uranium is considered a U.S. strategic asset of importance for national security. This is why several U.S. government agencies, including the U.S. State Department, had to approve Uranium One deal. However, Schweizer further alleges that Hillary Clinton was responsible for the approval of acquisition of a few U.S. uranium mines by Uranium One.

Schweizer also emphasizes that Frank Giustra, who sits on the board of the Clinton Foundation, had shares in Giustra’s Pacific Rubiales, a petroleum company in Colombia, at about the same time as the Obama administration was working on a free-trade agreement that would benefit Pacific Rubiales. Schweizer alleges in his book that Hillary Clinton was under the influence of Pacific Rubiales when she pushed for the Colombian free trade agreement. [Meanwhile, Giustra argues that he sold his shares in the company in Colombia before the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement was signed.]

Schweizer’s book points out that Hillary’s brother, Tony Rodham, was a member of the board of a North Carolina mining company when, in 2012, the company obtained a very rare “gold exploitation permit” (the first permit issued in more than 50 years) from the government of Haiti. During that period, billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars has been spent in Haiti, following the Haitian earthquake in 2010.

Schweizer further reveals in his book that Bill Clinton was paid by Laureate Education, Inc., a for-profit education company, while the company received an increased funding from Hillary Clinton’s State Department. The article, “Author Alleges Bill Clinton Just Quit Education Company Because of ‘Clinton Cash’,” published  by Bloomberg on April 25, 2015, has confirmed that Bill Clinton was paid by Laureate International Universities, part of Laureate Education, Inc.  In 2009, when he joined Laureate, the nonprofit received 11 grants for 9 million dollars from the State Department or the USAID. From 2010 to 2013, the nonprofit received even more grants.

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