Samantha Bee’s criticism notwithstanding, journalists have dedicated a lot of their reporting and writing to the Donald J. Trump Foundation, a supposedly charitable organization founded in 1988. Their work has discovered alleged bribes, nonexistent donations to other charities, and countless other discrepancies. Yet little has been said or done about the Trump Organization, an international business conglomerate owned and operated by the Republican nominee and his adult children. It serves as the corporate face of the Trump brand, and if Newsweek‘s new exposé is accurate, it may threaten national security in the event of Trump’s election come November.
According to Newsweek reporter Kurt Eichenwald, his investigation “reveals an enterprise with deep ties to global financiers, foreign politicians and even criminals.” He stresses “there is no evidence the Trump Organization has engaged in any illegal activities,” but stresses the frequency with which the Trump Organization’s business dealings with various international partners — many with past, current, or potential ties to U.S. foreign policy. That, and the fact that — unlike the maligned Clinton Foundation — it possess “a web of contractual entanglements that could not be just canceled.”
What results, Eichenwald argues, is the possibility of a highly problematic Trump presidency:
If Trump moves into the White House and his family continues to receive any benefit from the company, during or even after his presidency, almost every foreign policy decision he makes will raise serious conflicts of interest and ethical quagmires.
The remainder of the article meticulously surveys a litany of examples from Mumbai, South Korea, India, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. Some aspects of these stories, like Trump’s Twitter tiff with Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, were previously reported. Yet the business particulars behind the scenes — like the fact that Alwaleed is “the billionaire who aided Trump during his corporate bankruptcies in the 1990s by purchasing his yacht, which provided him with desperately needed cash” — were ignored.
Plus, the deeper Eichenwald digs into each example, the more complicated the business connections turn out to be. Like in Turkey, where the Trump Organization struck a branding deal with the Dogan Group in 2008. Since then, the Dogan family has fallen out of favor in Turkish politics, which were further agitated by a recent failed coup attempt, and Trump’s continued anti-Muslim rhetoric has only soured his image. As Eichenwald puts it, “this is no minor skirmish” since “American-Turkish relations are one of the most important national security issues for the United States” currently.
For more details, make sure to read the original article at Newsweek.