UKIP Uncovered
What motivates the leaders of the United Kingdom Independence Party?

Wednesday, September 03, 2003 

A Winding Trail

What follows is a long and in many ways quite extraordinarily tortuous trail that will eventually lead us, probably quite co-incidentally, but nevertheless surely and certainly back to the Clinton White House.

That White House was for most of the time of the Clinton's occupancy involved in controversy and scandals. Those in which UKIP's newly recruited political strategist and advisor, Dick Morris, became notorious involved sex. The threads we will follow on this post almost exclusively concern mankind's other great weakness - money.

On 7th March 1990 Mr John Browne Member of Parliament for Winchester rose in the House of Commons and made a statement of apology. Column 889 at 4.31 pm "I rise to apologise most sincerely........ " In the course of that statement and debate which was to lead to his suspension from Parliament and deselection from his constituency two facts stand out:-

First, there is the matter of the Saudi Arabian monetary agency. Some eight years ago my company, Falcon, in which I had declared an interest as a director, had a contract with the Saudi agency........

The second matter concerns Selco East and Mr. Charles Chidiac.

The link provided above allows the full debate to be read but we will highlight only one further aspect from Column 917

Sir William Shelton........The Committee received a letter from Mr. Charles Chidiac from Hawaii which exonerated my hon. Friend in every way. We, the Committee, did not accept that letter. We chose to disbelieve it. We thought that Mr. Chidiac was trying to help my hon. Friend, which he probably was. However, we were unable to question Mr. Chidiac. We were unable to bring him as a witness to the United Kingdom. First, we had no money to pay his fare. Secondly, we had no way of obliging him to come. We suggested that he might wish to come but he did not wish to do so. Mr. Chidiac, as I have said, wrote a letter exonerating my hon. Friend and we were unable to question him. As I have said also, I think that the Committee took the right decision. I signed its findings. This was a difficulty in my mind, however, and I was unhappy.

We shall now follow the affairs of Mr Charles Chidiac whose company Selco East paid the fee to Browne's Company Falcon, and whose attempt to exonerate his business associate was so apparently arbitrarily rejected by the Conservative dominated committee (an interesting point not to be overlooked and even more significant when recalling that this was the beginning of the cash for questions scandals and the sleaze lable being applied to the Tories, which many consider they carry to this day!)

Background on Charles Chidiac is available from this link, The London-Hawaii-Bermuda Triangle written in July 1991 but referring to the events of the early nineteen eighties which was also the period when Browne had his dealings with Chidiac.

Now believe it or not we must turn to the situation regarding the supply of arms to Iraq before Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait. It is in documentation from the US Congress that clues are available as to why the Conservative dominated Members Interests Committee in the House of Commons were probably unwilling to accept Mr Chidiac's letter of exoneration for Mr Browne at face value. (Those who took the time to read the full item from the Hawaiian link above will already be unsurprised I imagine!).

Those with the time, interest and inclination might be interested in reading the entire report US Congress on Arms to Iraq and the BNL Scandal, for it is quite fascinating not least for its relevance today, but the key content for our purposes only comes at the end, where in the list of the co-conspirators in the scandal is the one and the same: Charles C. el-Chidiac, Selco East Consultants

None of this could have been helpful to Chidiac's plans for a luxury hotel complex in Hawaii already running into difficulties among accusations of corruption Chidiac's Lawyers join queue of creditors.

By 1995 Chidiacs development plans in Hawaii appeared hopeless but he briefly returned to the island as can be read in this 30th November1995 Developer Refuses to give up on Mega-Resort

We are fortunate to have a link from these more distant events to the recent past in the form of an interview Chidiac gave to the US Public Broadcasting TV channel in a series of programmes called "The Fixers" The full interview is again available from this link
Charles Chidiac and the Lunns

The Lunns were involved in money-raising for the US Democratic Party first in Hawaii and later in California, but it is to Oklahoma that we must now turn. The story turns from corruption in the Hawaiian Land Use Commission to similar problems involving the regulation of Natural Gas and a complex arrangement that resulted in the Lunns apparently acquiring an energy company for nothing. There is much complicated testimony and background available on this matter and Chidiac is of course involved.

For those wanting only a brief overview we recommend reading from this link Testimony of Nolanda Butler Hill and Stephen P. Dresch Implicating Thomas F. McLarty III and Hillary Rodham Clinton in the matter of Dynamic Energy Resourse Inc., ....

More detailed background material is available in pdf format Volume Two and similarly Volume One.

As a result of all these events, Chidiac, in fear of his life applied for eventual entry to the Federal Witness Protection Program. Permission was denied by the Department of Justice and Chidiac was placed under the protection of a foreign government.

As we said at the outset, a tortuous trail indeed. What does it explain? Very little, other than the unsuitability of John Browne's choice of business associates and the wisdom of the Westminster Member's Interests Committee to treat Chidiac's letter with some suspicion.

We found it strange that John Browne linked as he is to Chidiac should have reappeared in UKIP's internal political manipulations at almost the same time Dick Morris arrived upon the scene. Browne was first pushed by Farage upon London and subsequently on the North West as candidate MEP for June next year, where as a rank outsider and with his checkered past he did remarkably well to come in third place with a healthy 11.5 per cent of the vote only just behind the winner at 14.2 per cent. Of course there are many many questions regarding the manner in which that election was run 22 of which we put to Returning Officer Michael Harvey on this blog on 17th July None of which have yet been answered

Where was John Browne while these events took place? We have heard he was in the USA; indeed a UKIP member from the North West on hearing of his candidature for that region reported he was in fact an American.... how rumours fly!

posted by Martin |8:31 AM
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