Shocking. UK trying to influence a US election.
The US would never try to influence a foreign election now would it?
[quote]Congress routinely appropriates tens of millions of dollars in covert and overt money to use in influencing domestic politics abroad.
The National Endowment for Democracy, created 15 years ago to do in the open what the CIA has done surreptitiously for decades, spends $30 million a year to support things like political parties, labor unions, dissident movements and the news media in dozens of countries, including China.
The endowment has financed unions in France, Paraguay, the Philippines and Panama. In the mid-1980s, it provided $5 million to Polish emigres to keep the Solidarity movement alive. It has underwritten moderate political parties in Portugal, Costa Rica, Bolivia and Northern Ireland. It provided a $400,000 grant for political groups in Czechoslovakia that backed the election of Vaclav Havel as president in 1990. For the Nicaraguan election of 1990, it provided more than $3 million in “technical” assistance, some of which was used to bolster Violeta Barrios de Chamorro, the presidential candidate favored by the United States.
And the endowment spent $1.6 million last year for political “institution building” programs in China, said Louisa Coan, the endowment’s program officer for East Asia. That was in addition to millions of dollars spent on Chinese-language broadcasts by the Voice of America and cultural exchanges designed to improve the image of the United States in Asia.
Those are among the more benign American efforts to intervene in the domestic politics of nations around the globe, activities that have been revealed in declassified documents, memoirs and records of congressional hearings.
Since the end of World War II, the United States, usually acting covertly through the CIA, has installed or toppled leaders on every continent, secretly supported political parties of close allies like Japan, fomented coups, spread false rumors, bribed political figures and spent countless billions of dollars to sway public opinion. [/quote]
[quote] MR. BLITZER: There is a story in the new issue of Time Magazine suggesting that there was an intelligence finding, a recommendation that the U.S. take overt or covert measures to help certain politicians in Iraq get elected in these upcoming elections. It came under some resistance from some members of the intelligence committees up on the Hill. What can you tell us about this?
SECRETARY POWELL: Well, obviously, we never discuss covert programs, but in this instance I will say that we have a record of overtly supporting candidates for government, candidates for office in governments that are going through the process of transitioning to democracy.[/quote]