Arab-American Group Won’t Release Hagel Tape

February 13, 2013

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) filed for cloture on the nomination of Chuck Hagel as secretary of defense late Wednesday afternoon as Republican senators continued to call for additional disclosure of material from Hagel.

Among the requested materials: the full text and details of several speeches Hagel failed to report to the Senate Armed Services Committee that have since been uncovered.

Fox News Channel on Tuesday reported on two speeches Hagel failed to disclose as requested, including one given in 2008 to the annual conference of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC).

The ADC is a controversial nonprofit whose conference last year featured speakers prominent in the Boycott Divestment Sanctions movement targeting Israel. The 2012 conference also featured an award presentation celebrating an author whose essays include one titled, "Zionism is a form of racism."

The ADC also has not disclosed the full video of Hagel’s 2008 speech, while refusing to release its tax records as required by federal law.

A reporter for the Free Beacon went to the ADC’s office on Tuesday to request the video, as well as the organization’s most recent Form 990, which lists financial and donor information and which nonprofits must present upon in-person request.

However, ADC Vice President Nabil Mohamad told the Free Beacon that the video was in an "archive" in Maryland and not available. He also declined to provide the group’s 990.

When the Free Beacon attempted to follow up on Wednesday, phone calls and emails to the ADC were not returned and the organization refused to let a reporter enter its office.

Later, when a second reporter telephoned the ADC to inform the group of the legal requirement, he was accused of racism and bigotry, of making threats against the organization, and was told that the "authorities" had been informed of his request.

Late Wednesday afternoon on the floor of the Senate, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R., Ok.) again called on Hagel to comply with GOP disclosure requests and specifically mentioned the 2008 speech to the ADC.