The Soros Thread (Retitled)

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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby Luther Blissett » Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:23 pm

1 out of every 100 U.S. citizens protested on January 21. I can't believe so many of us made so much money. I mean, it's hard to fathom.
The Rich and the Corporate remain in their hundred-year fever visions of Bolsheviks taking their stuff - JackRiddler
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby Iamwhomiam » Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:34 pm

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You should hook up with my old crowd in Chicago, Luther.
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby Luther Blissett » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:18 am

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The Rich and the Corporate remain in their hundred-year fever visions of Bolsheviks taking their stuff - JackRiddler
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby stefano » Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:26 am

Weird little one. Sounds like Obiang is holding some sort of sword over Mann's head, or has bought him. Not that it's necessarily false though. Bourdon hates Obiang, and it's the kind of place Soros would consider in need of intervention. But on the other hand Obiang certainly knows that just using the name 'Soros' will get a lot of woke morons on his side.

George Soros 'plotted to oust Equatorial Guinea's leader'
27 June 2017

Former British mercenary Simon Mann, who led a failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea in 2004, has accused US billionaire George Soros of plotting to overthrow the country's government.

He said he had warned President Teodoro Obiang Nguema, Africa's longest serving leader, of the alleged plan in 2011.

But he said he did not have any proof, and Mr Soros has not yet commented.

Simon Mann made the remarks as he was testifying on behalf of Mr Obiang's son at a high-profile trial in Paris.

Teodorin Obiang Nguema is accused of using public money to fund his jetset lifestyle in France.

Simon Mann, 65, a former commando and businessman, was arrested in Zimbabwe in 2004 and extradited four years later to Equatorial Guinea, where he was sentenced to 34 years in prison.

But one year later he was released after being pardoned by Mr Obiang.

In his testimony in a Paris court, he also accused William Bourdon, a lawyer for the anti-corruption NGO Transparency International, of being part of the alleged plot, as well as exiled opposition leader Severo Moto Nsa and Lebanese businessman Ely Khalil.

Both Mr Moto and Mr Khalil were involved in the failed coup attempt of 2004, which sought to install Mr Moto as president of the oil-rich West African country.
"I explained to the president it [the coup] could be by any means," he told the court. "They were looking at all options, including legal."

However, he said he could not "prove" his claim, saying: "I don't have written evidence."

When he was asked if he had been paid to give his testimony, he said he only had his expenses covered.

Mr Bourdon, who is representing civil plaintiffs in the case against the president's son on behalf of Transparency International France, said the allegations were "extremely grave", saying that Simon Mann "had plumbed the depths of filth."

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Simon Mann led an attempt to oust Equatorial Guinea's president

Outside the court, Simon Mann said that the high-profile trial of Teodorin Obiang Nguema was an attempt to "destabilise and overthrow" the "recognised and legitimate regime" of Equatorial Guinea.

Teodorin Obiang Nguema, who is also the country's vice-president, is accused of buying a mansion and sports cars in France with a fortune amassed from public funds.

His six-storey Paris villa, estimated to be worth more than $100m (£80m), is located on Avenue Foch, in one the most prestigious neighbourhoods of the French capital. It reportedly boasts a cinema, spa, hair salon and taps covered in gold leaf.

Mr Obiang, who was not in court, denies the allegations. Equatorial Guinea has questioned France's right to put him on trial, arguing Mr Obiang has diplomatic immunity.
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby cptmarginal » Wed Jun 28, 2017 9:35 am

I find the competing narratives interesting:

Financial speculation behind smear campaign - Pravda

Clan Obiang: The Eastern European Network of an African Dictator - OCCRP (Open Society Institute/USAID)

I picked two sources that are approximately equivalent in credibility on the topic :)

Stefanov’s most important Panamanian connection is to Glomar Supplies S.A., a company that is managing a fleet of cargo ships tied to Equatorial Guinea’s regime. One of those ships is known to be owned by Obiang, and others may be as well. Glomar is also a shareholder in a Lithuanian company, Minijos Salos, together with Stefanov’s daughter.

Stefanov received a power of attorney for Glomar Supplies which granted him the right to manage its bank accounts, conclude business deals and register movable or immovable property, including ships.

In an interview with 15min, Stefanov confirmed having the power of attorney for Glomar Supplies, but said it was exclusively for performing his duties as a director. He refused to disclose Glomar’s ownership. “It’s a commercial secret. Maybe I know [the owners], maybe I don’t,” said Stefanov.


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It's got to be tough operating a company with a name like that; was it founded by Howard Hughes, or what? Might as well just put out a sign advertising yourselves as spooks...
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby cptmarginal » Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:57 pm

Found some relevant info while doing news archive searches and reading more about Ely Calil, the alleged coup plot leader (both times)

Under fire: Lebanese millionaire who seems to know everybody - 26 August 2004

Mr Calil is no stranger to controversy or, indeed, the legal process. He has been investigated over illegal payments allegedly made in connection with contracts between the French state-owned oil giant Elf-Aquitaine and the Nigerian government.

The Elf scandal spawned France's biggest ever corruption trial. Last year, the former chairman of Elf, Loik Le Floch-Prigent, who was appointed by President Mitterrand, was jailed for five years after an eight-year investigation into the siphoning off of some £200m before the company was privatised in 1994. Mr Calil was arrested in Paris in connection with the probe but released on appeal. The allegations are still under review by the French authorities.

Mr Calil has been rarely photographed over the last 30 years, and friends remain loyal and discreet. A former financial adviser to Lord Archer, Mr Calil is said to be part of the disgraced peer's inner coterie.

Mr Calil's world even drew in Peter Mandelson, the European Commissioner for Trade. The former Labour MP rented a luxury flat in Holland Park from Mr Calil after he lost his cabinet post in the wake of revelations of an undeclared home loan from fellow minister Geoffrey Robinson.

Last year, Mr Calil's eldest son, George, was arrested following the death of his girlfriend, the actress Laura Sadler, who played nurse Sandy Harper in the popular medical drama Holby City. Ms Sadler died while "watching the sunrise" after falling 40ft from the balcony of George Calil's Holland Park flat. The toxicology report at the inquest revealed large amounts of alcohol, derivatives of cocaine and a trace of diazepam in her body. Also an actor, George had played alongside her in Holby City. He was later released without charge.


The mystery of Lord Mandelson's finances - 11 Jul 2010

The man in the velvet smoking-jacket and black cravat, holding a giant storybook on his lap, looks straight at the camera, shifting slightly in his leather armchair.

"Once upon a time," he says, confidentially, "there was a kingdom, and for many years it was ruled by two powerful kings. But they wouldn't have been in power without a third man.

"They called him the Prince of Darkness," he says, adding with a smirk: "Don't know why."

Peter Mandelson's TV advert for his about-to-be-published memoirs may be a magnificent new landmark in ex-ministerial camp.

But from the king of spin, it would probably be unwise to expect full disclosure.

An investigation has uncovered several alleged aspects of the Mandelson story which seem most unlikely to feature in the pages of this week's authorised version.

It is a tale of a rich friend, inside information, allegations – denied – of a dubious oil connection and the apparent concealment of financial interests in breach of Parliamentary rules.

It starts in one of London's most expensive streets, at the heart of the Nash terraces around Regent's Park. On it lies a beautiful peach-stucco villa, and a long-standing mystery.

There is no puzzle about the owner of the house: Lord Mandelson. There is no secret about its value: Land Registry records show that in 2006 he bought the place for £2.5 million, including stamp duty.

The mystery has always been how he could possibly have afforded it.

The price was around 16 times his then-income as a European Commissioner, a mortgage which, even in pre-credit crunch days, no lender would have contemplated.

Sources close to the then Mr Mandelson suggested at the time that he used a bequest from his late mother, Mary, and sold his shares in an advertising agency.

But probate files show he received only £452,000 from his mother's estate; a search at Companies House disclosed he sold the shares a year after buying the house; and Land Registry records of his previous property dealings in London and his former constituency of Hartlepool show that he could have amassed no more than around £1.15 million in equity to put towards the purchase.

Added together, all that would still have left Mr Mandelson at least £1 million short. He did take out a mortgage – reportedly for £750,000 – to cover most of the gap.

But in a 2009 interview he let slip that he had paid it off completely after just one year.

The normal place to look for politicians' earnings is the declarations of interests they are obliged, under the rules, to make.

Mr Mandelson's declarations list only modestly-paid work for newspapers and magazines, and a number of speaking engagements.

The Telegraph has been told, however, that Mr Mandelson had at least one paid interest which he has not declared, or not declared fully. The most important, it is alleged, was with a company called Medley Global Advisors (MGA), founded by Richard Medley, the former chief adviser to the financier George Soros.

Mr Medley, an American, met Mr Mandelson in 1993/4 when they both attended the "global transatlantic young leaders' programme" of the Aspen Institute, a think-tank.


"We've been good friends since the early nineties," said Mr Medley from New York last night. "He was here at my house probably three weeks ago, and he and I have met many times."

But according to nearly a dozen current or former employees of MGA, spoken to by The Sunday Telegraph, the relationship was more than personal.

Mr Mandelson, they say, was paid by the company, whose job is to provide "inside information" for its clients, principally hedge funds – information they can act on before it becomes public.

Mr Mandelson, according to the MGA sources, delivered "intelligence" on the plans of the British Government.

"It was on economic policy, fiscal policy, what they were planning with Europe – and what the Bank of England were telling them internally," said one source.

That much, if usually from people at lower levels, was the firm's bread and butter – they had, according to Mr Medley, hundreds of "consultants," including journalists, academics and policy-makers, on the books – and there is no evidence that Mr Mandelson disclosed official secrets, or information acquired in his on-off role as a minister.

But the atmosphere of secrecy rang alarm bells in the company. Mr Mandelson, said one MGA source, was referred to internally by a code word.

"What distressed me about it was that he was very cagey," the person said. "It was the behaviour of a man who wanted to hide what he was doing.

"One time I was in the office he came in and did a conference call," where clients were invited to call in to speak to him.

"He was absolutely paranoid about knowing who was on the call. He wanted all the names of the people who had been invited to call in.

"Richard would tell us: 'Peter's very sensitive about this and you've got to be very sensitive about this.' I was truly disgusted – it just felt wrong."

The company was based in New York and London. Another MGA source said: "He said he didn't want to talk to any British employees, presumably because he was worried his relationship with the company would get out."

Mr Mandelson's relationship with the company, the sources said, extended over a number of years, and he was paid over at least two years.

Some of the sources with access to the records say that there is documentation relating to discussions and meetings with him in March, June and July 1999, three in June 2001, and two in February and June 2002.

Mr Mandelson, who twice had to resign from office, was not in government on any of those dates. He served as a minister from May 1997 to December 1998, and again from October 1999 to January 2001.

However, some of the sources say his relationship, though not necessarily the payments, continued during his periods of ministerial office.

Even if he was only paid while a backbench MP, Mr Mandelson would have been obliged to record any payments in the Commons' register of members' interests.

However, Mr Mandelson's register entry shows no payments from MGA, apart from a single one-off fee for a "speaking engagement" in New York on 30 January 2002. The amount was not disclosed.

"His relationship was much more extensive than that," said an MGA source.

Another, who had access to the company's financial records, said: "I can confirm he was paid. I cannot remember the specific amounts, but the normal fee to consultants was one to two thousand dollars a month."

Mr Medley, who sold MGA in 2005 and now runs another business, said last night: "I am absolutely not saying I didn't pay him, I'm just saying I can't remember."

After also initially saying that Lord Mandelson "could not remember" any payment from MGA, his spokesman issued a statement last night saying: "Peter has known Richard Medley and his family for nearly twenty years.

"He has seen and spoken to him on countless occasions during that time at home, on the phone and in his office. But he has never acted as a paid consultant to Richard or his company."

The Sunday Telegraph investigation has also raised questions about whether Mr Mandelson had an undeclared relationship with Friedhelm Eronat, a secretive millionaire oil-industry fixer then based in London.

Mr Eronat's former company, Cliveden Group, was awarded a concession to drill for oil in the Darfur region of Sudan.

He was also named by US federal prosecutors as an alleged conduit for bribes in the 1990s between Mobil Oil and the then prime minister of Kazakhstan, Nurlan Balgimbayev. Eronat was never prosecuted for any alleged offence.

In 2005, Cliveden's former chairman, Peter Felter, took Mr Eronat to an employment tribunal in London. The alleged link with Mr Mandelson, hitherto undisclosed, emerged in the context of those tribunal proceedings.

Dr Felter stated during the case that Mr Mandelson had been hired by Mr Eronat in part because of his "very good contacts" with another oil firm, BP.

"Eronat told me we've got Peter Mandelson as a consultant," Dr Felter said, in remarks not reported at the time. "He was hired while he was out of office, later in 2001 or the beginning of 2002."

Dr Felter also stated at the time that Mr Mandelson was paid, though he did not know how much. "Eronat took pride in having this connection," he said.

The employment tribunal was settled. Dr Felter, who has now signed a confidentiality agreement as part of the settlement, yesterday refused to comment further.

It is not clear what, if anything, Mr Mandelson did for Mr Eronat. There is no suggestion that he was involved in the Sudan or Kazakhstan deals.

At around the time Mr Mandelson was hired, Mr Eronat, an American, renounced his citizenship to avoid being caught by a US ban on its nationals doing business with the Sudan regime. He subsequently acquired a British passport.

Lord Mandelson insisted last night that the reason he had not declared a relationship was that he had no relationship to declare.

"He has never acted as a consultant to Friedhelm Eronat and has no knowledge of the man in question," his spokesman said.

There is one last, potentially very lucrative, paid interest which Mr Mandelson did declare: his work for the French business "fixer," Alain Minc.

Minc's firm, AM Conseil, employs only three staff. But in the last year Mr Mandelson declares a relationship with it, 2004, the company turned over £5.5 million.

According to Mr Minc's biographer, Stephane Marchand, Mr Minc charges up to £150,000 per consultation to favoured clients and "earns his money selling intelligence and influence".

It has never been clear what Mr Mandelson, who does not speak French, did for AM Conseil, or how much he earned.

But both Mr Minc and Mr Mandelson, as a Euro-commissioner, spoke out strongly in favour of the hugely controversial takeover of the French steelmaker, Arcelor.

The successful bidder was Lakshmi Mittal, a friend of Mr Mandelson's and a major donor to the Labour Party. Also involved in the deal was Nat Rothschild, a close Mandelson friend on whose yacht the former business secretary has famously sailed.

Yesterday, in an interview to promote his memoirs, Lord Mandelson defended himself against the charge that he was too keen on the company of rich people.

"Do you know what I say to that?" he said. "Good for me. I mean, I'm not going to be governed by Labour Party political correctness about who I should meet or talk to or where I should spend my time."

With its disclosures about Messrs Brown, Blair and Campbell, the Mandelson book may be working Westminster into a lather over the settling of political scores.

But the former business secretary knows some rather more obscure power-brokers, too, and the story of his money is just as interesting as the story of his politics.


See this long article for more on Ely Calil and Friedhelm Eronat:

Invisible Hands - The secret world of the oil fixer (Harper's, March 2009)
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby barracuda » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:43 pm

politico.com/playbook

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DDwMeO9W0AA9nDL.jpg-large.jpg (307.53 KiB) Viewed 2980 times
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby Elvis » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:33 pm

Someone at the Open Society Institute bought a Gamora "Guardians of the Galaxy" makeup kit. :shock2:
"Frankly, I don't think it's a good idea but the sums proposed are enormous."
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby Elvis » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:34 pm

Re: Lalla Weymouth's party...Jeff Bezos...not invited?
"Frankly, I don't think it's a good idea but the sums proposed are enormous."
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby American Dream » Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:50 am

Congressman suggests Charlottesville was George Soros–backed conspiracy

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VICE News: In fairness, antifa is in the news because of a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville.

GOSAR: Well, isn’t that interesting. Maybe that was created by the Left.

VICE News: Why do you say that?

GOSAR: Because let’s look at the person that actually started the rally. It’s come to our attention that this is a person from Occupy Wall Street that was an Obama sympathizer. So, wait a minute, be careful where you start taking these people to.

And look at the background. You know, you know George Soros is one of those people that actually helps back these individuals. Who is he? I think he’s from Hungary. I think he was Jewish. And I think he turned in his own people to the Nazis. Better be careful where we go with those.

VICE News: Do you think George Soros funded the neo-Nazis who marched in Charlottesville?

GOSAR: Wouldn’t it be interesting to find out?


https://news.vice.com/story/paul-glosar ... e=vicefbus
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby American Dream » Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:30 am

The antifa apocalypse is coming this weekend, if you believe the hype

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“On their website, they are calling for an open civil war that they will start here in the United States in November,” a YouTuber named Jordan Peltz said in a clip that went viral. “They are fundraising for weapons, training, ammunition, suppliers. They are not hiding this. They are openly fundraising so they can attack.”

“The end game here is martial law,” one video warns, “is provoking Republicans, patriots, whatever, you and me, into this huge battle, whether it’s just fighting or whether it’s guns. What they will do is they will throw up their arms and say, ‘I told you so, they’re violent’ . . . They want us out there, with our weapons so the government will commence with martial law. And then, I believe, serious gun control-slash-confiscation.”

“Make sure you got enough ammo, make sure your guns are ready,” another poster advised in a clip with more than 110,000 views. “You have to understand these are vicious, vicious people. Your life means nothing to them. In fact, if you’re a white man, you don’t deserve to live.”

Infowars provocateur Alex Jones announced in a video that antifa was “going to lose on November 4 and every day after that, because they’re a bunch of meth-head pieces of crap.”
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby American Dream » Fri Nov 17, 2017 11:24 pm

Soros Slander Reveals Anti-Semitism at the Heart of the Far Right

Dinesh D’Souza’s book smearing George Soros is factually false, morally reprehensible, and nothing new.

By Eric Alterman SEPTEMBER 7, 2017

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Hungarian government poster portraying financier George Soros and saying "Don't let George Soros have the last laugh" is seen at an underground stop in Budapest.


On August 31, convicted felon and right-wing provocateur Dinesh D’Souza tweeted that he thought it would be “interesting to see” the liberal financier and philanthropist George Soros “extradited to Israel & tried for his complicity in Nazi atrocities against Jews.”

As he hawks his most recent book, The Big Lie—ironically, a near-perfect description of its contents, which claim to reveal the Nazi roots of the American left—D’Souza has tweeted countless versions of this particular big lie. With childish faux cleverness, he refers to Soros as “Hitler’s collection boy” and claims that Soros “literally worked for Hitler.” Right-wing talk-radio shows, websites, and even a Republican gubernatorial candidate from Pennsylvania have parroted lines from his anti-Soros campaign.

D’Souza told a right-wing talk-show host that he was “delighted to uncover” Soros’s history. But, as with almost every alleged discovery made by pro-Trump partisans, it is not only factually false and morally reprehensible; it is also old news. The charge has already been made by such far-right luminaries as Glenn Beck, David Horowitz, Ann Coulter, Alex Jones, and Tony Blankley (who retracted it after I asked him to back it up). Perhaps most shamefully of all, former New Republic owner and editor Marty Peretz smeared Soros, calling him “a young cog in the Hitlerite wheel.”

Anti-Semitism has become a key element in exciting the passions of ‘populist’ conservatives here and abroad.


The microscopic kernel of truth in the accusation lies in the fact that Soros survived the Holocaust as a 14-year-old child in Budapest because he was hidden by a Ministry of Agriculture official who had a Jewish wife. Soros’s father, Tivadar Soros, helped protect her, and in return the official agreed to let George pretend to be his Christian godson. On one occasion, rather than be left alone in Budapest for three days, the young teen accompanied the official, who was sent to inventory the estate of a Jewish family that had fled the country. That’s it. The details of this episode are readily available and were covered in Michael Kaufman’s 2002 book Soros: The Life and Times of a Messianic Billionaire. (I have also written about it in the past.)

The Soros slander appears to derive from a bizarre 60 Minutes interview conducted by Steve Kroft nearly 20 years ago. In his introduction, Kroft intoned: “While hundreds of thousands of Jews were being shipped off to the death camps, George Soros accompanied his phony godfather on his appointed rounds, confiscating property from the Jews.” The accompanying footage showed masses of Hungarian Jews being led away at gunpoint as Kroft spoke. Then he turned to Soros accusingly: “My understanding is you went out with this protector of yours, who swore you were his adopted godson…went out, in fact, and helped in the confiscation of property from Jews.” Clearly flummoxed by the moral and intellectual imbecility of the inquiry, Soros offered a stumbling response that failed to clarify the truth.

Soros is a critic of Israeli policies, so the government that claims to represent the Jewish people excused an anti-Semitic campaign against him.


Soros, as is well-known, is a billionaire banker and major funder of liberal causes. As such, he represents a near-perfect target for anti-Semites seeking to purvey the same sort of poison that has historically characterized propaganda like The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. The fact that anti-Semitism has become a key element in exciting the passions of “populist” conservatives both here and abroad explains why so many far-right figures are willing to embrace it, regardless of the degree to which it stirs sleeping hatreds and imperils vulnerable Jewish communities. The most worrisome recent manifestation comes from the Hungarian government, which launched a poster campaign featuring a photograph of a smiling Soros with the warning “Don’t let Soros have the last laugh” beneath the words: 99 percent reject illegal 
immigration.

Aware of Hungary’s history in the Holocaust and the fears of its remaining Jewish community, the Israeli ambassador, Yossi Amrani, complained to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán: “The campaign not only evokes sad memories but also sows hatred and fear…. It’s our moral responsibility to raise a voice and call on the relevant authorities to exert their power and put an end to this cycle.” Incredibly, Amrani’s own government implicitly rebuked him by having his statement “clarified.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had a visit to Hungary scheduled, and he shares with Orbán—and, of course, with Donald Trump—a commitment to xenophobic fearmongering as a means of shunting aside accusations of corruption, dishonesty, and dysfunction. The Israeli Foreign Ministry immediately issued a statement accusing Soros of “continuously undermining Israel’s democratically elected governments” by funding organizations “that defame the Jewish state and seek to deny it the right to defend itself.” Thus, because Soros is a critic of Israeli policies, the government that claims to represent the Jewish people excused an anti-Semitic campaign against a Holocaust refugee conducted by the leader of a nation that participated in the Holocaust. Let that one sink in for a minute.

As with almost everything in American politics today, the charges against Soros are not really about Soros, much less what a 14-year-old boy did on one day during the German occupation of Hungary. D’Souza thinks that “former Nazi collaborator George Soros should be investigated as a sponsor of domestic terrorism” for his alleged sponsorship of antifa. Neither Soros nor his foundations support antifa in any way, but never mind that: At last count, more than 138,000 idiots had signed a petition at whitehouse.gov demanding that President Trump “declare George Soros a terrorist and seize all of his related organizations’ assets under RICO and NDAA law.” Incredibly, this is where our politics has taken us in 2017, a time when the murderous madness that seized so much of Europe in the 1930s and ’40s appears to be repeating itself—farcically, perhaps, but dangerously nevertheless.


https://www.thenation.com/article/soros ... far-right/
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Re: The Soros Thread (Retitled)

Postby American Dream » Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:16 am

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How Putin’s Using Hungary to Destroy Europe

The Kremlin seeks out ideologues who embrace its xenophobic message and share its enemies list. Hungary’s alt-right government—and its rivals—fit that profile perfectly.


In June, hundreds of extreme far-right militants—muscled up and heads shaved—demonstrated against Muslim immigrants at the launch of a new extreme-right group called Force and Determination that emerged to compete with the biggest far-right party, Jobbik.

Militants from Force and Determination subscribe to Nazi ideology, calling for a “fight to hold on to living space” (Lebensraum, as Hitler used to say) and hope to use their racist narrative to win votes in next year’s parliamentary elections.

Walk around the streets of Budapest today and you will hardly meet any refugees from the Middle East or Africa. What you will see is the face of George Soros on every bus stop brilliantly illuminated day and night next to seven questions addressed to the people of Hungary about a so-called Soros Plan, which allegedly entails opening European borders to millions of refugees.

Orban called for the Hungarian spy agencies to investigate the “Soros empire” of NGOs criticizing his policies. In Orban’s recent statement on national radio he told listeners that Soros wanted to see Hungary “condemned, stigmatized, and forced to change its migration policy.”

“The fear of foreigners is pathological here, and the fear inspires ugly incidents.”


Xenophobia, the fear of foreigners, is pathological here, and the fear inspires ugly incidents.

The news that a few refugee children might be coming to stay in a local guesthouse angered residents of Ocseny, a village in southwestern Hungary this fall.

Crowds of local people gathered to condemn Zoltan Fenyvesi, the owner of the guesthouse. The protesters called refugees “animals” who were about to come and kill their own children, and rape their women.

Later, Fenyvesi discovered that somebody had slashed the tires of his car in evident retaliation for his cooperation with Migration Aid, an NGO helping refugees.

“I cried with shame when I saw what paranoia had done to the people in Ocseny village,” Viktor Szigetvari, an opposition leader, told The Daily Beast.

What happened in Ocseny would sound familiar to Russian ears. Year after year, thousands of Nazi groups march in the streets of Russian cities chanting “Sieg heil!” Poverty, unemployment, and disillusionment have fed the hate for foreigners, who are seen as potential competition on the employment market and even in sexual relationships.

The Kremlin, for its part, has flirted with far-right groups on the one hand and arrested ultranationalist leaders on the other. Last week Russian special forces arrested more than 400 supporters of nationalist leader Vyacheslav Maltsev for their alleged revolutionary plans to overthrow President Putin.

But arrests do not stop violent crimes. At least nine people were killed and 72 injured as a result of xenophobic hate in 2016, a Moscow-based NGO, the Sova Center of Information and Analyses reported.

To understand Hungarian Prime Minister Orban and his supporters, meet András Bencsik, chief editor of right-wing magazine Demokrata. In a recent interview in Budapest, Benscik said he had been waiting for such a policy for years.

“Soros is dangerous, anti-Christian, not only is he dangerous for Hungary, he is threatening to destroy all of Europe,” Benscik told The Daily Beast in his office, which is decorated with swords, armor, and an old map of the Kingdom of Hungary.

Why was Soros smiling in the pictures on billboards all over Budapest? “He is laughing at us, we have to stop him,” the editor insisted.

Benscik said his country’s leader, Orban, and his Fidesz party were “bravely” using alt-right rhetoric even though only 44 percent of registered voters turned out in last year’s anti-immigrant referendum.

A devoted Hungarian nationalist, Benscik speaks good Russian, often attending events at the Russian embassy and especially the Russian cultural center, which is located just next door to Demokrata magazine’s office. The editor recently traveled to Moscow together with his son and a friend, also members of the ruling Fidesz party, to participate in a conference dedicated to international security issues.

“Putin has been here twice this year.”


“I am happy to see that Vladimir Putin likes to visit Budapest,” Benscik said with a big smile. Putin has been here twice this year.

And Orban seems to like to visit Moscow as well. In 2014 he signed a $12 billion loan deal with the Kremlin to expand the Soviet-era nuclear plant in Paks.

Jozsef Peter Martin, executive director of Transparency International in Hungary, says that potential corruption around that deal is a concern: “Nobody gives us any details about the loan for the nuclear plant, which is officially a state secret.”

What sort of political regime is Orban creating in Hungary? “The regime is not as severe as in Azerbaijan or even Russia,” says Martin. “But it is somewhere in between liberal democracy and dictatorship, a kind of a hybrid regime, in which nominally we have independent institutions and free elections but in action the elections are not fair and most of the institutions have been captured by power.”

In the beginning of the anti-Soros campaign, Viktor Szigetvári, who is chairman of the National Political Council of Egyutt, an opposition party, participated in televised debates with Szilard Nemeth, deputy leader of the ruling Fidesz party. Szigetvári asked the official about Hungary’s anti-Semitic attack on the world’s most famous philanthropist.

“I said in a live interview that at the end of the day the attack was all about Jews, that the narrative and symbolic context of the campaign resembles the narrative of the 1930s, that the campaign inspires violence, and alt-right aggression,” Szigetvári recalled. “But the Fidesz deputy leader just stood up and walked out of the live show.”

Hungarian liberals struggled to put an end to hate speech against Soros and refugees that is unacceptable for Europe. Many young people in Hungary, who came out to rallies in support of Soros, want to see the philanthropist remembered for his help, for billions of dollars he donated for decades to develop education, culture, and science in Hungary.

The attack [on Soros] was all about Jews... the narrative and symbolic context of the campaign resembles the narrative of the 1930s.
— Viktor Szigetvári, chairman of the National Political Council of Egyutt


But the government is unmoved. “Look at the world around you: It is not liberal; We are here to stop liberals from monopolizing everything, as if they alone created the rule of law and the elections,” Zoltan Kovacs, a government spokesman, told The Daily Beast.

So militant is Hungary’s anti-liberal stand that it may even have inspired the Kremlin’s agents, both in Europe and at home. “We take Orban’s right-wing party as an example for our ideal policy,” says Leonid Reshetnikov, a retired lieutenant general of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service. “Unlike Hungary, Russia still has not created a strong right-wing party.”

These days Reshetnikov is chairman of the board of Tsargrad TV, a channel created in 2015 by Russian far-right nationalist Alexander Dugin and Russian oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev (both currently under U.S. sanctions). Tsargrad’s mission is to support the anti-Kiev and anti-Western rebel movement in Donbas. The channel now claims more than 10 million viewers.

“In our Orthodox circles, Soros is also considered Satan,” Reshetnikov said with a little laughter. “Tsargrad is happy to cover the brave and thoughtful Hungarian policy, it is a beacon in the largely failing European Union.”


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