…Nicki Kelly Writes
Published in The Punch 5/26/2011
On Monday, one of the dailies published the contents of cables exchanged between the U.S. embassy in Nassau and the State Department in Washington, covering the years 2003 to 2010.
The Bahamas cashe is part of some 250,000 State Department cables released by Wikileaks, and includes an interview of Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham by Brian Bachman, chief of the embassy’s political/economic section.
The interview took place at Mr. Ingraham’s office on April 8th, 2003, a year after the FNM’s defeat in the 2002 general elections.
What astounds me is that Mr. Ingraham would allow himself to be questioned by the representative of a foreign power on confidential matters relating to Bahamas government policy, and the internal affairs of his party.
At the time, Mr. Ingraham was a former head of state and a sitting Member of Parliament. Even more alarming is the frankness of the Ingraham responses, and the highly personal views expressed regarding members of the Opposition and its leader Perry Christie.
This speaks to a degree of intimacy between Mr Ingraham and the U.S. government that should be cause for concern by all Bahamians. In other countries such behaviour would be viewed as a threat to national security.
It is on thing to entertain questions from a reporter, and another to “spill your guts” to the emissary of a foreign power. Inevitably, one has to ask what other governments have been the recipients of Mr Ingraham’s confidences, and what has he been saying.