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Another Letter Sent to the Inspector General

11:22 AM, Mar 10, 2009 • By MICHAEL GOLDFARB
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Reps. Israel and Kirk who first requested an investigation into Freeman's financial ties to Saudi Arabia and the People's Republic of China have sent another letter to the inspector general in response to a letter Dennis Blair sent to members of Congress last Friday. The Blair letter apparently sought to soothe concerns about Freeman by offering some additional information on how much he'd been paid by the Saudis and Chinese. Kirk and Israel aren't satisfied. Note also the discussion of Projects International, a consulting firm which Freeman chaired and which did a great deal of business with unsavory regimes.

Mr. Edward Maguire
Inspector General
Office of the Director of National Intelligence
Washington, DC 20511

Dear Mr. Maguire:

On Friday, we received the attached letter from the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) admitting that Ambassador Freeman received indirect salary from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia through his Middle East Policy Council. While the DNI continues to conceal a complete list of contributors to the Council across the years Ambassador Freeman received a salary, we maintain grave concerns that the new editor-in-chief of our nation's most important intelligence estimates has recently received indirect salary from a foreign government.

In addition, the DNI admitted in the attached letter that Ambassador Freeman received a $10,000 annual salary directly from Chinese National Offshore Oil Company - a company owned by the People's Republic of China with significant investment in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This appears to present Ambassador Freeman with a serious conflict of interest.

Furthermore, the DNI left open the possibility that Ambassador Freeman, as Chairman of "Projects International," may have direct or indirect financial ties to foreign entities and individuals. According to its Web site, Ambassador Freeman became Chairman of "Projects International" in 1995. The firm lists operations in Saudi Arabia, the Middle East, Africa and China. Unfortunately, its Web site does not disclose a complete foreign client list. We ask you to obtain and publicly disclose all foreign entities and individuals that paid consulting fees to Projects International since 1995.

In the wake of the November 30, 2006 report by the Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General (Case Number: H06L101153224), we know the Director of National Intelligence takes the issue of "conflict of interest" seriously. That is why we were surprised to learn in his attached letter that he appointed Ambassador Freeman without first obtaining any financial disclosure information.

Thank you for your continued investigation into this matter. We remain confident in your ability to conduct an independent investigation.