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Saturday, January 8, 2011

'Qaeda 7' att'y eyes NYC job

An embattled former Obama administration appointee -- who was part of a group of attorneys accused of being terrorist sympathizers for defending "enemy combatants" -- is under consideration for a post at the US Attorney's Office in Brooklyn, The Post has learned.

Tali Farhadian was one of several private attorneys who created a rift between conservatives and more-moderate Republicans last spring when President Obama assigned them to posts within the Justice Department.

Although they were handling unrelated matters in Attorney General Eric Holder's office, a political watchdog group accused Obama of overloading his office with officials sympathetic to enemy combatants.

Their appointments even prompted Liz Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, to dub them the "al Qaeda Seven."

Those siding with Cheney included prominent neo-conservative William Kristol. Other Republicans, including Sen. Lindsay Graham (SC), defended the attorneys.

Farhadian, 35, served as counsel to Holder until her departure in June. Before joining Holder's office, Farhadian worked at a law firm that wrote legal briefs for two organizations, Human Rights Watch and Human Rights First.

Jessica Smith, a spokeswoman for the Justice Department, said yesterday that Farhadian is still with the department but that she has been on unpaid personal leave since June.

Smith defended Farhadian's actions as a private attorney.

"One of the hallmarks of our nation's legal system is that attorneys provide faithful representation to all sorts of clients," Smith said.

Farhadian is a Rhodes scholar who served from 2004 to 2006 as a law clerk to US Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.

She completed her undergraduate degree at Yale and also received a master's in oriental studies from Oxford University in England.

Farhadian would not comment.

mmaddux@nypost.com



Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/brooklyn/qaeda_att_eyes_nyc_job_dZmRAU8VYuKTmNp1ju23DN#ixzz1AT5T1t5o