The Corporate Media will certainly be talking about scandals at tomorrow night's debate: mostly nonsensical sex scandals, with careful avoidance of any mention of Wiki Leaks ever-expanding exposes of Clinton corruption. What might arguably be one of the biggest scandals of all won't be mentioned---it's been passed largely in silence by the Corporate Media so far---but tip of a big political iceberg has been emerging in Southeast Asia. This is probably underreported story of 2016; but its implications are devastating.
The scandal to which we refer is commonly called The Fat Leonard Scandal, unknown to most Americans unless they read military or Southeast Asian news. Here's what it is, and why it is important.
The story broke in Singapore during Hilary Clinton's tenure as Secretary of State. A company called Glenn Defense Marine Asia was a defense contractor servicing US Navy ships in Singapore while in transit to and from the Middle East via the South China Sea. GDMA got its contract during the 1991 Gulf War under Bush Senior. Since then, the company CEO went to one Alex Wisidagama, who put the contracting operations into the hands of his cousin, an American expat (now a Malaysian national) known as 'Fat Leonard' Francis.
Fat Leonard was under suspicion already in Singapore, by local authorities investigating narcotics and sex-slave trafficking through the country. In 2010, the Singaporean authorities were approached by some US Naval personnel who, distrusting Obama's LGBTQ-friendly Pentagon, reported that they had reason to suspect that Fat Leonard was overcharging and fabricating accounts to the USN. The Singaporean authorities found truth to the allegations and conducted a sting operation with the FBI. Wisidagama and Francis were lured to San Diego and arrested for fraud in 2013. Wisidagama has since been sentenced to five years in prison. Francis is facing 35 years, but has not yet been sentenced. Singapore arrested two more officials of GDMA last month.
Once on trial, Fat Leonard began confessing, and his confessions are the subject of the scandal. Not only was Francis overcharging the Government, he was actively bribing high-ranking US Navy officers, and paying them with drugs, sex-slaves, and cash to look the other way. Thus far, 14 officers have been indicted. These include:
Rear Admiral David Gilbeau, Supply Officer on the USS Nimitz. Gilbeau pled guilty in August to perjury. The Pentagon has since 'reassigned' Gilbeau to an office job with a reprimand.
Rear Admiral Terry Kraft, former commander of the USS Ronald Reagan and commander of US Naval forces in Japan. Kraft was found guilty of bribery, but allowed to retire with full pension and retention of all Naval citations.
Rear Admiral David Pimpo, also of the USS Ronald Reagan, was found guilty of bribery and several other charges. He was reduced in rank to Captain and allowed to retire.
Vice Admiral Michael Miller, another distinguished officer of the USS Reagan. Miller was the head of the Navy's Office of Legislative Affairs under Obama and was appointed to head the US Naval Academy. Miller was found guilty along with Pimpo but was censured and quietly allowed to retire.
Captain Daniel Dusek, who oversaw logistics for the 7th Fleet, was once referred to by Fat Leonard as "Our Golden Asset". Dusek was found guilty of bribery and passing classified information to Francis. He was sentenced to 4 years with loss of rank and pension.
NCIS Supervisor John Belieavu, pled guilty to bribery and other charges, and faces 20 years. In exchange for implicating others, Belieavu is cooperating and has testified against Admirals Ted Branch and Bruce Loveless of US Naval Intelligence. The two admirals have since been suspended.
Eight other officers are currently on trial, and an unknown number of others under investigation. As we see, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus is doing his best to cover up the scandal.
Now why won't this be mentioned at the debate tomorrow? Well, aside from the fact that much of the Corporate Media are subsidiaries of government contractors who likely don't wish to be investigated themselves, there's this unfortunate matter of following this money trail. If we look at a map, all of the Naval fleets whose officers were involved in the Fat Leonard Scandal also are based in the Middle East. To wit,
We know that opiates are being shipped to the US from Afghanistan and that meth and hash are being trafficked via the Wahhabi-run Gulf States where the US has bases. We know that illegal weapons are being trafficked through the area, ending up in the hands of US street gangs and Mexican drug cartels. We know that thousands of women and children have been kidnapped by Wahhabi gangs in the Middle East and Africa and sold into slavery (like the prostitutes these officials were paid with). These women and children have never been found, but they evidently also go in the same direction as the drugs and weapons. We know that ISIS was selling oil and other contraband on the Black Market.
And somehow, despite the high presence of the US military in all these countries, none of these activities seem to get stopped. It's strange when we consider that the Syrian Army manages to break up terrorist drug labs and the Iranian Navy seizes ships carrying contraband on a regular basis, that our military is unable to stop any of this.
Maybe it's not that they're unable---but that they're unwilling. And that's one reason that the Fat Leonard Scandal is being hushed up. But there's also this to consider: the indictments in the scandal started coming down in 2013, the same time Obama began his ill-fated Pivot to Asia. Recall that the whole controversy in the South China Sea began when China laid claim to some uninhabited reefs; upon which they constructed artificial islands. Now China stated in 2013 that their purpose was to suppress smuggling and piracy, as part of Xi Jinping's New Silk Road Project. Obama objected on the grounds that US military vessels had a right of passage through the South China Sea. China agreed on the condition that US vessels would be subject to search. Obama rejected that proposal.
In light of the Fat Leonard Scandal, why do we suppose Obama would object to China monitoring shipments going through the area? Connect all these dots, and we see why the Fat Leonard Scandal may well be the tip of an iceberg.
For obvious reasons, Clinton would rather not talk about Fat Leonard, but Trump isn't likely to either. Given Trump's endorsements from military officers and personnel, corruption in the military is probably not something that Trump is eager to address. But it ignoring it isn't going to make it go away.
The fact is that our military has, under the last four administration, sunk under the general corruption and effete political correctness as the rest of our so-called 'elite institutions'. Nobody should believe at this point that the Fat Leonard Scandal is some isolated incident. Our Military is in need of a serious overhaul; even more so than the post-Vietnam military that Ronald Reagan rebuilt.
And that's a little more important than something Trump said about a hot babe 10 years ago.