Sunday, March 12, 2017

John Kerry apprentice to lead Israeli-Palestinian Portfolio at State Department

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By: Jordan Schachtel | March 08, 2017
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Jordan Schachtel is the national security correspondent for Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @JordanSchachtel 

One of John Kerry’s closest confidantes is now in charge of the Israeli-Palestinian portfolio at the State Department. 


Controversy has been ubiquitous throughout Michael Ratney’s Israel-related career.

While he served as Jerusalem consul, Ratney oversaw grants to OneVoice, a leftist non-profit that President Obama allegedly used to try to unseat Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel’s 2015 election.

About $350,000 was dumped into OneVoice to “build a voter database, train activists and hire a political consulting firm with ties to President Obama’s campaign.” The group hired a former top Obama campaign official, Jeremy Bird — described by The New York Times as “the architect” of the former president’s grassroots campaign — in efforts to oust Netanyahu.
After word of Obama potentially interfering in a foreign election was released, an investigation was opened up in the matter. However, when Congress called upon Ratney to release his emails, he claimed ignorance, saying he never saw the ones related to OneVoice. Even more suspiciously, he deleted the evidence.

Ratney’s deletion of his emails, instead of archiving them, put him in direct violation of the State Department’s policies. He claimed he was not aware of the rule at the time.

As U.S. consul to Jerusalem, Ratney was in charge of overseeing a controversial Palestinian arms training program that violated a 2011 agreement with the Israeli government, according to the Times of Israel. Ratney’s staffers were “in effect setting up an armed Palestinian militia in the consulate,” an Israeli officer said at the time. “They are being trained with weapons, in Krav Maga, and tactical driving. It’s irresponsible. Who can guarantee that such weapons in the hands of Palestinians won’t spread to terror?” he asked.