The UAE funds dozens of pressure groups in the United States of America to penetrate the political and intelligence systems to win support for its plots and enhance its auspicious influence.
According to a classified US intelligence report, the UAE has made significant attempts to influence US political decisions using legal and illegal means.
According to the international campaign to boycott COP28, the UAE, a vital partner of the United States in the Middle East, seeks to influence US foreign policy in favor of its own interests.
The Washington Post revealed that the UAE exploited weaknesses in the US government in various departments. This included making campaign donations, using lobbying firms, and taking advantage of lax disclosure laws to meddle in American affairs.
The US Intelligence Council created the report, which has been shared with senior US lawmakers to inform their policy decisions toward the UAE and the Middle East.
According to US intelligence, Russia and China have previously interfered in US elections and political systems.
The federal government’s lack of reform in foreign influence laws and insufficient resources for the Department of Justice enabled these activities.
The UAE has spent huge sums, nearly $150 million, on lobbying and donated hundreds of millions to American universities and think tanks, which produce papers that support the interests of the UAE.
Foreign money, as evidenced by the United Arab Emirates’ enormous spending, may impact American democracy, according to a lawmaker interviewed by the newspaper.
The UAE hired three former members of the intelligence and army to spy on dissidents, politicians, journalists, and American companies.
According to the Washington Post, in an example of the UAE’s influence campaign, those officials admitted to providing sophisticated hacking technology to the UAE in court last year.
The UAE has been the third-largest buyer of US weapons since 2012. They have also fought alongside US forces in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.
According to the newspaper, Youssef Al-Otaiba, the UAE ambassador to the United States, expressed his satisfaction with the UAE’s position and strength in the United States and believes that this success is due to their strong partnership and effective diplomacy, which highlights their similar interests and values.
According to OpenSecrets, the Emirati lobby in America has received more than $157 million from the UAE since 2016, making it among the largest foreign-funded lobbyists in the United States.
This massive amount of money has allowed companies working on Emirati interests to award high-paying contracts to former defense officials and former members of Congress, who used to represent their American constituents but now work for Emirati interests. Examples include Todd Harmer, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) and Lamar Smith (R-Texas).
The Emirati lobby in America has spent a lot of money persuading Congress to establish closer military relations with the UAE. One company, Akin Gump, has provided more than $500,000 to the political campaigns of lawmakers who approached them on behalf of the UAE.
Sometimes they donated money within a few days of meeting with lawmakers, as when Sen. Todd Young held a meeting with an Akin Gump lobbyist to discuss US-UAE relations and received a $5,000 donation from Akin Gump eight days later.
In all, it can be seen that 25 lobbying organizations worked for Emirati clients and made a lot of contacts on behalf of their clients, as Emirati clients paid more than $64 million to these organizations. In addition, these organizations also made political contributions of more than $1.65 million.
More than $500,000 of these contributions were made to members of Congress who these organizations approached on behalf of their Emirati clients.