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Conspiracy Nation -- Vol. 7 Num. 60

("Quid coniuratio est?")


In CN 7.58, an article by Sherman H. Skolnick ("Sabotage? The Crash of Ron Brown's Plane") mentions "jury tampering". Specifically, we have as follows:

ITEM: A couple of years prior to the crash, a Vietnamese official accused Ron Brown of soliciting a huge bribe -- like $700,000 -- to get Clinton to open up Viet Nam to American big business. A federal grand jury began hearing evidence for a possible criminal indictment. There was jury tampering by President Clinton and his Justice Department. The grand jury proceedings were supposed to be secret, yet Brown and his confederates were day by day, illegally kept informed, so they could obstruct justice by bribing or terrorizing grand jury witnesses. Brown was not indicted.

I received a long response from a CN reader, punctuated throughout with that sophisticated rejoinder "Sources? References?"

I pointed out to that reader and I point out to any others that my name is not Sherman H. Skolnick. Since I also disclaim any necessary agreement with Skolnick's material, I am not the best person to go to with your questions, arguments, etc. True, I do, at loss of time and money to myself, type in and post Skolnick's always intriguing articles. But it does not therefore follow that I am supposed to be Skolnick's personal secretary and handle his correspondence.

But still, I have in the past made efforts in that direction. I did several interviews with Mr. Skolnick in which he answered several questions from readers. These interviews were posted and are available as back issues. (Write to me on how to get back issues.) So the answer(s) to your question(s) may have already been answered.

The "highly original" reader response in which "Sources? References?" are demanded has been answered ad nauseum in previous interviews, available as back issues. And as noted, my name is not Skolnick; I don't write his articles; I neither necessarily agree nor disagree with all/some of what he says.

So if you want to argue, if you want "Sources? References?", why not call information, ask for the phone number of Sherman Skolnick in Chicago, and then politely call him with your question(s). I suggest you check that he's not busy and offer to call back if he is busy. But I personally have found that Mr. Skolnick is friendly and talkative and if you catch him at a good time he'll be happy to answer your question(s).

With that said, I will however venture out on a limb and give my own corroboration for the allegation of jury tampering connected with the grand jury investigation, mentioned above. Note again that I am just speaking on my own here, not representing anyone.

Taking considerable time from my busy day, I look through my archives. Under the old "Conspiracy for the Day" series, I find the following:

           Conspiracy for the Day -- November 17, 1993
                    ("Quid coniuratio est?")

[From "The 700 Club", November 12, 1993]

DEMONSTRATORS: We want the truth! We want the truth! We want the truth!

BOYD [Janet Boyd, CBN News]: Vietnam veterans and POW/MIA family members gathered across the street from the White House Thursday to demand the resignation of Commerce Secretary Ron Brown. They said Brown and the White House have not responded truthfully to allegations that Brown accepted a $700,000 bribe from a representative of the Vietnamese government. Brown allegedly took the money in exchange for lifting the economic trade embargo against Hanoi. He is under investigation by a federal grand jury in Miami.

Brown has denied the charges against him, calling them "preposterous." But sources say arguments from Brown and Treasury Secretary Lloyd Bentsen convinced the President to ease restrictions against Vietnam this summer.

Brown denied discussing the Vietnamese embargo with anyone in the administration. But secretary Bentsen told Congress Brown did attend administration meetings where Vietnam was discussed. Secretary of State Christopher said Brown may have been at meetings concerning Vietnam.

Though he passed an FBI polygraph test, Brown's chief accuser, Ben Ly, has not been called by the federal grand jury.

But evidence suggests someone, perhaps at the Justice Department, is leaking details of the Grand Jury investigation. That is a violation of federal law. In its October 11th issue, a source close to Brown detailed for Time magazine some of the testimony taken by the Federal Grand Jury. And officials at the White House reportedly told Time in a later issue that the Grand Jury investigation "is virtually complete and they are confident Brown will be pleased with the results."

BURTON [Congressman Dan Burton of Indiana]: I don't know how the White House, or Mr. Brown or anybody else would know what is going on in any Grand Jury room. And I don't understand why Mr. Ly is not being called. He should be called. The Grand Jury should get all of the information possible so they can make an informed decision on whether or not to indict Mr. Brown.

BOYD: Burton and other critics of the Commerce Secretary say many questions need to be answered by Brown and the administration. Like what role did the woman living in this Washington townhouse play? The house is owned by Brown but occupied by Haitian ethnic Lillian Madsen [sp?], long-time friend of Brown. Brown allegedly was going to use Madsen to acquire secret business equity in Vietnam.

Some Vietnam veterans and POW/MIA families say they will not rest until Ron Brown and Bill Clinton come clean.

DEMONSTRATOR: We will demonstrate, and keep demonstrating. We've got to have the truth! You understand? We've got to have the truth!

BOYD: Janet Boyd, CBN News, Washington.

KINCHLOW [Ben Kinchlow]: Not to worry... We know that the Democrats are absolutely bound and determined to get justice as they are trying to do with [unclear]. You know that they're going to...

MEEUWSEN [Terry Meeuwsen]: This gives new meaning to the word "vigilance," doesn't it? I mean the hearings are almost concluded and they have not yet called before the group the man who is the, the number one accuser.

KINCHLOW: It's not only that but we've also, we've already got the verdict. We already know that Mr. Brown is going to be "pleased with the results!"

So the above does indeed suggest jury tampering.


What I find is that, over the years, much of the stuff I've looked into is filed away "somewhere". So when, for example, Skolnick makes allegations of jury tampering in the Ron Brown mess, I at least have some frame of reference wherein I know I've seen that "somewhere". In this instance I was able to track down some corroboration. In other instances I just don't have the time. Like I say, it's not up to me to defend what Skolnick says. If we had an honest press in this country, Skolnick would have been given a public venue (like for example CBS' "60 Minutes") in which he could be interrogated. We ought to be seeing by now Mike Wallace, that fearless knight errant battling for the truth, quizzing Skolnick on national television. Why not? Or if not "60 Minutes", then maybe a PBS station could do an in-depth investigation. That way, both sides could be heard and the thinking public could make up their own minds. As it is, Skolnick is like the "invisible man" or something: he's there, but most of us aren't able to see him. What's the matter, "journalists"? Is Skolnick just too, too working class for your oh-so-refined lifestyles? If you want, maybe he'd wear a smiley-boy mask so he'd fit in better with you all.

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Aperi os tuum muto, et causis omnium filiorum qui pertranseunt. Aperi os tuum, decerne quod justum est, et judica inopem et pauperem. -- Liber Proverbiorum XXXI: 8-9