Elliott Abrams, Militant Zionist, Chosen for NSC Post

Article excerpt

PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH has appointed a militant Zionist, who once pleaded guilty of lying to Congress, to the important position of overseeing White House policy on the Arab-Israeli conflict. National Security Adviser Dr. Condoleezza Rice announced on Dec. 2 the appointment of Elliott Abrams as special assistant to the president and senior director for Near East and North African Affairs, includingArab/Israel relations and U.S. efforts to promote peace and security in the region.

Abrams, 54, was a major figure in the plot known as the Iran-Contra affair. As the assistant secretary of state for inter-American affairs during the 1980s under President Ronald Reagan, Abrams helped arm the Nicaraguan rebels despite a congressional prohibition. The scheme involved encouraging Israel to sell U.S.-made weapons to Iran, which in turn secretly sent weapons to the Latin American rebels. Abrams pleaded guilty in 1991 to withholding information when he testified before Congress about the secret American supply network for the Contras. Former President George Bush pardoned Abrams in December 1992, near the end of his presidency.

In the words of The New York Times Abrams is "a passionate advocate of Israel." Some of his family members live in Israel, and his wife, Rachel, is the daughter of Midge Decter and stepdaughter of Commentary editor-at-large N. …


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