Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Chalabi's daughter will write for Slate!!!

From :

By Gabriel Sherman
As of this week, the pundit class has a new and well-connected member: Tamara Chalabi, the daughter of Iraq’s deputy prime minister, Ahmad Chalabi.

Ms. Chalabi, fresh off a Harvard Ph.D. in history, has a book due out next month, The Shi’is of Jabal ‘Amil and the New Lebanon, from Palgrave Macmillan. On Dec. 12, Slate began publishing a daily diary of her reports on her father’s campaign for prime minister.

Besides her family ties, Ms. Chalabi has some powerful help on the launching pad. Washington über-hostess Juleanna Glover Weiss, a registered lobbyist at the Ashcroft Group and a former spokeswoman for Vice President Dick Cheney, has set out to introduce Ms. Chalabi to editors.

Ms. Glover Weiss—whose soirées draw media and political figures from Campbell Brown to Paul Wolfowitz—met with Ms. Chalabi two weeks ago at a Caribou Coffee in downtown D.C. The get-together was the suggestion of mutual friends at Black, Kelly, Scruggs & Healey, the lobbying firm that employs Jeffrey Weiss, Ms. Glover Weiss’ husband.

Mr. Weiss currently represents Mr. Chalabi and the Iraqi National Congress.

Since the meeting, staffers at The New York Times, The Atlantic and The Hotline have received entreaties from Ms. Glover Weiss on her new protégée’s behalf.

Ms. Glover Weiss said the advisory arrangement is informal, and that Ms. Chalabi isn’t paying for her networking services.

“She clearly has a strong academic background and has interesting things to say about the role of religion in Middle Eastern society,” Ms. Glover Weiss said by phone on Dec. 13. “I was happy to help her get to know folks.”

On Nov. 15, Ms. Chalabi’s father attended a party that the couple hosted for Entifadh Qanbar, the deputy military attaché to the Iraqi Embassy, at their $1.5 million Washington home; other guests included Richard Perle, former C.I.A. director James Woolsey and Christopher Hitchens.

Ms. Glover Weiss said she had not read the Slate diary and had not contacted editors at the online magazine.

“There is clearly a dearth of female commentators on the Middle East,” said Ms. Glover Weiss. “That, combined with her intellect and access—I thought someone would find that very useful.”


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