by Anton Chaitkin and Jeffrey Steinberg
October 22, 2008 (LPAC)--With less than three weeks to go before the Nov. 4 elections, it is fair to say that a wide segment of concerned American voters, along with many foreign leaders, continue to ask the question: Is George Soros still running Barack Obama's Presidential campaign?
- Soros's Latest Hostile Takeover -
Soros had been bragging for years about his longstanding scheme to stage a "hostile takeover'' of the Democratic Party. It was Soros money that catapulted Howard Dean into the chairmanship of the Democratic Party, following his failed bid for the 2004 Democratic Presidential nomination. After the defeat of Sen. John Kerry in November 2004, Soros launched the Democracy Alliance, a behind-closed-doors cartel of billionaires, who pooled their funds to establish a parallel Democratic Party structure, modelled on the Soros-bankrolled "civil society'' revolutions in such locations as Ukraine, Georgia, and Serbia.
Soros's bankrolling of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili's "Rose Revolution'' has drawn recent media attention, after Saakashvili's murderous attack on South Ossetia, which nearly triggered war between Russia and NATO this Summer. What was largely ignored in the fog of the Russia-Georgia war was the role of British Foreign Office figure Mark Malloch-Brown--Soros's longtime British partner and "handler.'' First, as head of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and later as vice chairman of both Soros's offshore Quantum Fund and his Open Society Institute, Malloch-Brown was Soros's full partner in all the filthy Caucasus endeavors. It was only at the point that Soros was about to take a lead role in launching Obama's Presidential campaign, that Malloch-Brown went home to "Mother'' and became the number two man in the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
But until that moment, in mid-2007, Malloch-Brown was Soros's 24-7 link to the British Crown for more than 20 years, a role that earned the Foreign Office mandarin his British knighthood.
- Rainbow Revolution, American Style -
Through billions of dollars in donations to a select group of Democratic Party-linked organizations, such as MoveOn and ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), and through his longstanding links to Service Employees International Union (SEIU) corporatist president, Andy Stern, Soros has established his financial and political control over the very grassroots apparatus that is supposed to give Obama the margin of victory on Nov. 4.
Indeed, Soros's Democracy Alliance is led by two leading figures in the SEIU/ACORN nexus. Anna Burger, the secretary-treasurer of the SEIU and chair of the "Change to Win Federation,'' Stern's labor-busting split-out from the AFL-CIO, is vice chairman of the Democracy Alliance. And Drummond Pike, the head of the Tides Foundation, and the longtime sponsor of former ACORN boss Wade Rathke, is the treasurer of Democracy Alliance. The Tides Foundation is an $80-million-a-year conduit of funds from wealthy donors, who wish to conceal their contributions to many of the very organizations now principally bankrolled by the Soros funding cartel.
While the Republican Party and the right-wing media have recently had a field day, highlighting criminal probes into ACORN's alleged voter registration and subprime mortgage fraud schemes, hardly a word has been reported on ACORN's links to the Tides Foundation and the larger Soros Democracy Alliance nexus, which both pour an undisclosed fortune into ACORN annually.
ACORN founder and longtime SEIU organizer Wade Rathke left ACORN in the last year, after the New York Times revealed a decade-long ACORN/Tides coverup of a million-dollar theft from the group's treasury by Rathke's brother. Rathke was recruited in 1972 by none other than Tides Foundation head Drummond Pike, who simultaneously launched Tides, as a conduit for radical environmental and "civil society'' groups, largely manned by radical flotsam and jetsam from the 1960s New Left--an apparatus that Lyndon LaRouche labelled at the time as "New Left local control fascists.'' At the time of his recruitment by Pike, Rathke was running a local community control organization in Arkansas, and with Tides money, backed by a later flow of Federal funds from the Carter Administration, ACORN went national.
But the Soros-Obama links, so frequently cited in news accounts, run much deeper and more personally than Soros's bankrolling of a network of aging New Left radicals, now swept up in a string of corruption scandals, second only to Obama's links to convicted Chicago fixer Tony Rezko.
From public accounts, Soros met Obama for the first time in March 2004, when Obama was an Illinois state senator, running for a vacant U.S. Senate seat. Obama was the only state elected official and the only U.S. Senate candidate that the high-profile billionaire speculator met with during that election cycle. On July 27, 2004, Soros held a fundraiser at his New York home for Obama, which raised at least $60,000, mostly from Soros's family members, according to news accounts.
Slightly more than two years later, on Dec. 4, 2006, then U.S. Sen. Barack Obama traveled to New York City, to privately confer with Soros about a possible Presidential run in 2008. After a widely publicized closed-door meeting, Soros escorted Obama into an adjacent conference room, where a group of wealthy donors was waiting for Soros's imprimatur to begin seriously bankrolling Obama's drive for the highest office in the land. Among the billionaires who participated in that soire were Union Bank of Switzerland USA chief Robert Wolf and hedge fund manager Orin Kramer, both of whom would emerge as major "bundlers'' of cash for the Illinois Senator's Presidential run.
Weeks after the New York City session with Soros, Obama formally launched his campaign for the Presidency. On April 7, 2007, one of the biggest early fundraising events for Obama took place at the home of Steven Gluckstern, who had headed Soros's Democracy Alliance. Soros was a prominent participant in that event. Three weeks later, on May 18, 2007, Soros was again host to an Obama fundraiser, this time at the Greenwich, Conn. home of fellow hedge fund manager Paul Tudor Jones of Tudor Investment Corp. According to the Greenwich Times, the 300 guests each kicked in $2,300 to the Obama campaign.
- Soros Hedges His Bet -
Soros's early-and-often backing for Obama did not deter him from hedging London's bet. Soon after John Kerry lost the 2004 election to President George W. Bush, Soros not only launched his hostile takeover move on the Democratic Party through Democracy Alliance. He also unleashed his grassroots dupes in MoveOn to assail Halliburton, the mercenary firm formerly headed by Vice President Dick Cheney, which had been handed a lion's share of contracts in Anglo-American-occupied Iraq. After the public assaults drove down Halliburton stock to $26 a share, from a peak of $40, Soros quietly bought 2 million shares in the company, called off his attack dogs, and made a quick $40 million profit, when share prices shot back up to $50.
And Soros had already been bankrolling some leading Republican neoconservatives, who shared his zeal for "rainbow revolutions'' on Moscow's doorsteps. Randy Scheunemann, now the chief foreign policy advisor to Sen. John McCain's Presidential campaign, and a leading figure in the neocon Project for a New American Century (PNAC), went onto Soros's Open Society Policy Center payroll in 2003, as part of the Soros sponsorship of Saakashvili's "Rose Revolution.'' During 2003-05, Scheunemann's Orion Strategies lobbying firm got $140,000 from the Open Society Policy Center to back the Georgian insurgent movement.
Soros's Open Society Insitute has also been one of the largest funders of the Reform Institute, a Washington think-tank headed by McCain's campaign strategist and longtime aide, Rick Davis.
When it comes to investing London's political capital in foreign hostile takeovers, Soros always hedges his bets.