Monday, December 24, 2007

Kissinger Associates In The 1990s: The Confidential Consultants

Scowcroft’s old firm, Kissinger Associates ( ), had an office in Manhattan at 350 Park Avenue in 1991. According to a spokesperson at that time, Scowcroft ended his connection to Kissinger Associates “when he re-entered government service” as President Bush I’s National Security Affairs advisor. When asked by Downtown in early 1991 who some of Kissinger Associates clients were, the spokesperson replied: “That’s all confidential.”

Downtown then asked the spokesperson if there was anything the public could be told about what kind of work Kissinger Associates did.

“We’re an international consulting firm,” she replied. She then suggested that Downtown speak to another employee of the firm, named L. Paul Bremer [who was subsequently appointed to be George W. Bush II’s Presidential Envoy to Iraq on May 6, 2003], if we had any more “technical questions.” The spokesperson then added that she didn’t “see any connection” between Kuwait and the work of Kissinger Associates.

When Downtown telephoned later in the afternoon to speak to Bremer in early 1991, we were told by an English-accented spokesperson named Penny that “Ambassador Bremer left for Washington 15 minutes ago” but perhaps she “could help.” When asked who some of the clients of Kissinger Associates were in early 1991, Penny also replied that such information was “not given out” and “was confidential” but that “We don’t service any governments.”

Downtown then asked Penny why information about Kissinger Associates’ clients was not given out. “Most companies don’t give out this kind of information,” Penny answered. “I don’t really know who our clients are, myself.”

When Downtown expressed skepticism that Penny could work a few years for Kissinger Associates without knowing who its clients were, Penny replied in 1991: “Well, basically, all I do is set up appointments with the press and arrange press interviews.”

In the late 1990s, former Clinton White House Chief of Staff McLarty became a partner in Kissinger Associates and the firm’s name was changed to Kissinger McLarty Associates. ( )
One of the 2008 Democratic Party presidential candidates, Bill Richardson, was also employed by Kissinger McLarty Associates in the 21st-century.

(Downtown 1/23/91)

Next: George Philanthropist protest folk song lyrics