Thanks to some interesting research by a reader who wishes to remain anonymous, I’ve pieced together some interesting speculative conjectures about relationships between Aish HaTorah and the McCain campaign. The reason I’ve done so is for several weeks I’ve been trying to figure out why Aish HaTorah and its anti-Muslim political front group, Clarion Fund would be using their films, Obsession and Third Jihad in thinly veiled attempts to help John McCain’s presidential campaign.
Here are some of the interesting relationships I’ve uncovered:
Several months ago Huffington Post reported that Rick Davis, McCain’s campaign manager and lobbyist at Davis-Manafort, not only consulted for the pro-Russian Ukrainian political party, but that he also had substantial real estate holdings in Ukraine which had done very well for him.
One of Aish HaTorah’s founders is Rabbi Irwin Katsof, a billionaire international business consultant who also has substantial real estate holdings in Ukraine. Katsof runs several companies–the Doheny Global Group, AVest Ukraine, Dohenyavest, and Global Capital Associates. I have not yet been able to discover under what company name/s Davis has been investing in Ukraine or whether there is any overlap between his interests and those of Katsof. If there is, this would be an obvious reason for Katsof/Aish/Clarion to be advancing Davis’ and McCain’s political interests.
The Doheny website publicizes a tour of Israel and the Ukraine to mark Israel’s 60th anniversary. “Special guests” on the trip that took place June-July, 2008 were Republican luminaries Tom Ridge, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and others. Clearly, Katsof-Doheny’s business dealings with Republicans are long and deep.
John McCain and Joe Lieberman are honorary co-chairs of Katsof’s charity, Words Can Heal. In his book, Powerful Prayers, for which he collaborated with Larry King, John McCain was one of those noted Americans who contributed an “intimate prayer” which the authors explored. Clearly, Katsof’s relationship with McCain specifically is also “special.”
Sarah Posner reports at American Prospect that a new group called the National Republican Trust PAC has been trumpeting the mendacious claim that Barack Obama has no right to run for president since his supposedly unfound birth certificate would show he was not born in the U.S. Also, it claims Obama would provide driver’s licenses to terrorists and illegal aliens. What’s interesting here is that a co-founder of this group is Peter Leitner, a long time Republican bioterror specialist at the Pentagon. Leitner, through his company, MaxWell Biocorporation, sits on the board of the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council. Also, on this board is Katsof business partner (at Doheny), Jacob Rheuban.
Will Evans has reported in greater detail on Leitner’s group at NPR.