Recently released FARA documents from the United States Justice Department indicate that the world’s largest Public Relations agency, Edelman – as well as lobbying behemoth The Podesta Group – have been hired by Saudi Arabian interests to further their American interests in media and government.
Richard Edelman’s PR Firm, Edelman PR, has long had close relations with the Saudi Kingdom, including ongoing representation of the Embassy to enhance, “the Kingdom’s interests among key groups within the world body and to U.N. observers.”
This newest engagement is a project for $16,500 to “engage with opinion influencers, establish media engagement opportunities for principal, and assist in opinion editorial placement” on behalf of the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority.
The Podesta Group – owned by Tony Podesta, whose brother John Podesta is Chairman of the 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign – was hired for a $200,000 public relations engagement with the Center for Studies and Media Affairs at the Saudi Royal Court.
The Podesta Group specializes in global advocacy and strategic communications. Offering their top-level bipartisan support to organizations, governments, and individuals, earning them a title bestowed by Bloomberg Businessweek as the “Beltway Blackbelt.” They bring decades worth of experience calling on 535 members globally to give clients an e-ticket ride of focused boutique and data-driven results.
Podesta, founded in 1987 represents clients including the U.S. Aviation Industry, PGA (golf) of America, American Steelworkers, Puerto Rico, and others.
Those who have worked for the Saudi government in lobbying and PR include Hill & Knowlton (since 1982), Qorvis Communications, lobbying firm DLA Piper and others.