One interesting thing from the Tony Cordesman op-ed I linked to yesterday was this disclosure statement:
Disclosure: the nonprofit organization I work for receives financing from many sources, including the United States government, Saudi Arabia and Israel. No one from any of those sources has asked me to write this article.
I often think the people who make these kind of conflict-of-interest disclosures often protest too much. It would be pretty ridiculous to think that Ehud Olmert or Crown Prince Whomever called Cordesman up on the phone and asked him to defend the Saudi/Israel arms package. The significance of looking into who funds foreign policy research in the United States is simply that funders in this field -- as in any other field -- are going to want their funds to flow toward people with congenial ideas. People with perspectives that aren't congenial to anyone who invests money in foreign policy think tanks, meanwhile, aren't going to be able to get think tank jobs.
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