sabato 14 gennaio 2012

Why US people can't have their President of choice


Why WE the People cannot have our President of choice i.e., Ron Paul; HE IS NOT QUALIFIED AS A MEMBER OF THE COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS "RULING CLASS" i.e., the RICH MANS CLUB which president Clinton whispered "WELCOME TO THE RICH MANS CLUB" in Boris Yeltsins ear at the breakup of the USSR..
It is that is simple.... That said; I'll remind you.. Ron Paul is not an butt kisser. Butt Kicker!? OH Yes! Butt kisser? NO WAY!
This nation has been run by Nazi and Communist Corporate "Non Governmental Agency's" called COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS which has operated notoriously, willfully, wantonly in the US Corporate House and Senate along at the Right hand of our presidents, violating their Oath of Office of Public Trust, in Conflict of Interest with the Sovereign Civil Governments of the Union of the Republics of the united States of America. read http://www.foreign.senate.gov/ a little more background:
There is a list of CFR members which you can read here
Initial List of Council on Foreign Relations Members http://www.biblebelievers.org.au/cfrall1.htm
The CFR & the Ruling Class
One of the prime characteristics of the U.S. upper class is its high level of organization. One of the central organizations, accurately called "the citadel of America's establishment," is the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Founded in 1921, the CFR is the most influential of all private policy planning groups. Its great strength is mainly exercised behind the scenes and stems from its unique position among policy groups: it is simultaneously both a think tank for foreign and economic policy and also has a large membership comprising some of the most important individuals in U.S. economic, intellectual, and political life. The Council has a yearly budget of about $30 million and a staff of over 200.
The CFR's think tank consists of three overlapping activities. One is convening an "influential forum," mainly held in New York and Washington, DC, where senior government and corporate leaders, prominent intellectuals, and foreign dignitaries meet with Council members to discuss and debate the U.S. role in the world and the strategy and tactics required to accomplish U.S. goals. Another think tank function is organizing and implementing a wide-ranging studies program where CFR fellows draw on members and others to collectively study a foreign policy issue. The result of this work is then reported and often presented to government officials as policy recommendations.
Council employees and members are often tapped to serve in the federal government in appointed positions, although a number also serve as elected officials, especially at the higher levels. Finally, the CFR publishes Foreign Affairs magazine, which often prints study group recommendations written by a prominent CFR fellow or member and in this way shapes policy debates as they emerge.
The Council's second key source of power, its membership function, is more informal, involving a network of almost 4,200 members from many backgrounds and professions. Membership in the Council is by invitation only: a potential member must be a U.S. citizen who has been nominated and seconded by other CFR members and elected by the Board of Directors. Two-thirds live in the New York and Washington, DC areas. Fully 31 percent (1,299 individuals) are from the corporate ("business") sector, with another 25 percent (1,071 individuals) coming from varied academic settings (professors, university administrators, researchers, fellows). Nonprofits contribute 15 percent (640), government 13 percent (541), law 8 percent (319), the media 6 percent (248), and "other" 2 percent (74). Members pay a yearly fee on a sliding scale, depending on age, occupation, and residence.
There is also a special category of corporate membership: executives from 200 "leading international companies representing a range of sectors" participate in special CFR programs. Corporations representing capital in its most abstract forms-the financial sector, the largest commercial and investment banks, insurance companies, and strategic planning corporations-are most heavily represented in the Council. Petroleum, military, and media companies also have fairly close connections. A review of director lists of major corporations found that the following corporations have at least three of their directors who are also CFR members:
* American Insurance Group and Citigroup: Eight directors
* J.P. Morgan Chase, Boeing: Six directors
* The Blackstone Group, Conoco, Disney/ABC: Five directors
* Kissinger-McLarty Associates, IBM, Exxon Mobil, Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal, Viacom/CBS, Time Warner: Four directors
* The Carlyle Group, Lehman Brothers, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse, First Boston. Washington Post/Newsweek, Chevron Texaco, Lockheed Martin, Halliburton, Alliance Capital: Three directors
The Council's membership network consists of people one would expect to be CFR members-David Rockefeller, Henry Kissinger, Peter G. Peterson, George Soros, Maurice Greenberg, Robert Rubin, George P. Shultz, Alan Greenspan, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Richard B. Cheney, and George Tenet-as well as individuals whose membership is more unexpected, such as John Sweeney, Jessie Jackson, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, Katrina vanden Heuvel, Richard J. Barnet, and Daniel Schorr.
Bush, Kerry, and the CFR
Both Bush and Kerry are close to the CFR, draw most of their top foreign and economic policy advisers from this elite organization, and receive significant political funding from a number of Council-related individuals. While Bush is not personally a member of the CFR, his father was a member and a director of the Council in the 1970s and a large number of key members of his Administration are members. These include the so-called "neo-conservatives" who first became prominent in the CFR in the 1980s, when Reagan was president, and who have continued to play an important role since then. One of the key neo-con groups, Project for the New American Century, established in 1997 and identified by many as being the central organization behind the Bush administration, is heavily connected to the CFR. Fully 17 of the 25 founders of the Project for the New American Century are Council members.
CFR members who support Bush include key advisers or government officials in his Administration and also some key fundraisers who have helped make the Bush campaign fund by far the largest in the history of U.S. politics. In John Kerry's case, he is not only a long-time member (over 10 years) of the CFR, Teresa Heinz-Kerry is also a member. He has an even longer list of prominent Council supporters than Bush. Many of these supporters are economic and foreign policy advisers likely to play key roles in any Kerry presidency. Five current CFR directors and one current employee are openly supporting Kerry, most of them in advisory roles.
You should go to the source and read this research at:
http://www.thirdworldtraveler.com/Foreign_Policy_Institutions/Council_Foreign_Relations.html
By Bob Chapman, January 11th, 2012.
The hand of the US elitists shows more each day in the decisions being made in Europe. Mario Draghi, ex-Goldman Sachs, Trilateralist and Bilderberg, is putting everything in place just the way the US elitists want. We are about to see full scale quantitative easing. One trillion in loans times fractional lending of 3 to 9 to whatever will give Europe the funds it needs indefinitely. Europe is going to be a rerun of what we have seen in the UK and US. In behalf of German voters who are 65% against such funding, Chancellor Merkel has refused to allow issuance of Eurobonds or an expansion of the EFSF. Draghi at the head of the ECB is now putting pressure on Mrs. Merkel to drop back to a more defensive position. The intrigue is at its height. If Frau Merkel gives into Draghi she and her party will not score well in the next election and may even lose political control. That could cause Germany to consider leaving the euro, which would destroy the euro zone. There are major dangers here and all the players are well aware of it. Agreement will take time and if it is not reached everything could short circuit, other than the fact that the Fed has put the funds in place. The other objective of getting Germany to whole-heartedly accept the bailout and stimulation is another matter. Confusion reigns even among the participants. The US, UK, France and their front men, Draghi, Monti and Papademos are all moving forward. The price will be very high from an inflationary standpoint, but ...
(full article).http://theinternationalforecaster.com/International_Forecaster_Weekly/The_Fear_That_Fed_Money_Brings
Mr Chapman further writes:
The US, UK, France and their front men, Draghi, Monti and Papademos are all moving forward. The price will be very high from an inflationary standpoint, but to the elitists that isn’t even a consideration. They could care less. That is why you want to have your assets invested in gold and silver related assets. We could be headed toward another Weimer episode.
REFRESHER ON WEIMAR REPUBLIC

venerdì 13 gennaio 2012

Why Wall Street Bankers Are Fleeing

Nate C. Hindman



Wall Street Bankers Quitting 

To Start Their Own Businesses

Wall Street Startups5
First Posted: 1/13/12 01:50 AM ET Updated: 1/13/12 11:59 AM ET



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Shane Robinson celebrated his Merrill Lynch job offer over lunch and 
cocktails at a trendy Manhattan restaurant. His bosses toasted him and 
asked what he planned to do with the $10,000 end-of-internship bonus. 
Robinson, then 24, in late 2007, said he would probably save it. "Why?" 
he recalls them asking. "Just go spend it -- you're going to make a lot more."


As the economy started to spiral downward less than six months later, bonuses dried up, layoffs ensued and the young banker was told by his superiors that he might want to begin looking for other opportunities.
"It left a bad taste in my mouth," Robinson says. "Why would I want to have my fate determined by things that are outside my control? If I'm going to fail, I would much rather fail because of my own doing."
Not long after the recession hit, Robinson decided to ditch finance. He contacted A.J. Steigman, a former Merrill Lynch colleague who had quit to start a sneaker store, and the two hashed out plans to create an urban clothing website that was part social network, part e-commerce. For months, they slept on friends' couches while fundraising in different cities. They spent countless hours online, building the core technology and a community around their streetwear blog. Finally, in 2010, the duo secured $265,000 from investors to make their startup Soletron a reality.
Soletron's founders' path from high-finance to high-tech is becoming increasingly well-trodden, according to economists, venture capitalists and startup CEOs -- especially now, as we see some contraction once again on Wall Street, not to mention the stigma Occupy Wall Street protesters have bestowed on the "1 Percent." As employee dissatisfaction spreads through the financial services industry amid waning profits, slashed bonuses and layoffs, New York's bustling world of tech startups is attracting and absorbing fed-up financiers, offering them jobs, cash and a shot at creating empires of their own.
"At the end of 2008, we started seeing more people who graduated from college three or four years before, went to work at a large bank, but became disillusioned with Wall Street and were moving on to tech and entrepreneurship," says Matt Harris, a managing partner at Village Ventures, a Manhattan-based venture-capital firm. Harris says that over each of the past three years he has seen the flow of talent from Wall Street to Silicon Alley increase.
For many Wall Street refugees, a "logical next step is technology and entrepreneurship," Harris says. That's because the world of tech startups "has some of the same elements as Wall Street," including the adrenaline, the high stakes and -- for a lucky few -- the outsized returns. Bankers "are accustomed to the prospect of being able to earn a really good living," he adds. "And while entrepreneurship is risky, when it works, it can really pay off."
According to a recent study, an average successful startup raises $25.3 million, sells for $196.8 million and gives its shareholders a 676 percent return. While those numbers represent a small percentage of all startups, they leave bankers, who have watched their salaries shrink and their colleagues get axed, squirming in their penny-loafers.
From 2008 to 2011, national employment in the financial services industry fell by 7.3 percent, while high-tech employment excluding manufacturing jumped 7.1 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
In startup hubs like New York, where large numbers of new tech companies have popped up in recent years, the trend is even more pronounced.
The number of investment bank and brokerage firm employees in New York dropped by 17 percent from 2008 to 2011, according to analysis of government data by The New York Times. The number of bankers aged 20 to 34 fell by 25 percent in the same period. Meanwhile, in New York's high-tech sector, employment shot up by 30 percent from 2005 to 2010, city officials report.
While layoffs at large Wall Street banks continue to winnow the number of employees in New York's financial services sector, the allure of starting or joining technology firms in a city whereInternet startup investments are soaring has pushed some bankers to the exits.
Glamorized media accounts of financiers turned successful startup CEOs provide added encouragement to professionally frustrated Wall Streeters.
There's the poster-boy in Silicon Valley, Mark Pincus, who began his career as a lowly stock analyst, graduated into private equity, but ultimately dumped finance to launch Zynga, the social-gaming startup that recently sold shares to the public at a $7 billion valuation.
Then there are the homegrown New York stories of Wall Street number-crunchers who started some of the city's hottest startups, including Vinicius Vacanti, the founder of Yipit, Andy Dunn of Bonobos, Alexa Von Tobel of Learnvest and Barry Silbert of SecondMarket.
Silbert, for his part, spent the early part of his career as an investment banker selling off pieces of bankrupt Enron. He soon discovered that the way people buy and sell illiquid assets was ripe for disruption, and went on to build an online marketplace that facilitated such transactions. That marketplace, now known as SecondMarket, currently employs 140 people in New York, is worth an estimated $200 million and has changed the way private-company shareholders trade their stock ahead of an initial public offering.
But for each successful startup that has grown out of a Wall Street hangover, or received a boost from ex-Wall Street talent, there are at least 100 new businesses that flop, creating and then ultimately destroying jobs. Some fear those numbers will grow as the threat of a startup credit crunch becomes more real.
As such, some experts believe established tech giants like Google and Facebook -- rather than the droves of young New York-based startups -- are the drivers of the city's rising high-tech employment numbers. Facebook, for its part, is opening a large office in New York, the social network recently announced, and Google already employs about 1,200 engineers in the city.
It's at these large technology companies, not at Goldman Sachs, where the new "status jobs" are, a former Goldman analyst recently told The New York Times.
Regardless of which group draws more people away from Wall Street -- the tech giants or the tech startups -- Google and Facebook building engineering talent in New York is a net positive for the city's startup community, according to John Frankel, a partner at ff Venture Capital, who spent 21 years at Goldman Sachs before he became a full-time venture investor in 2008.
"Google and Facebook, much like Goldman, attract a lot of very smart people to New York," Frankel says. "And many ex-Googlers end up starting their own businesses here. Much like people in finance move from big Wall Street banks to hedge funds after a few years, folks often spend two to three years at Google, get fed up with whatever aspect there, and then go off and do their own thing."
In the past week alone, Frankel says several people currently employed on Wall Street have sought him for advice on transitioning into the tech sector. One, a 55-year-old banker, told Frankel that he's thinking about creating a group that helps funnel Wall Street refugees into positions at high-growth startups. (Arguably, those mechanisms already exist in the form of New York's growing network of incubators and accelerators, many of which have seen an increase in the number of applicants with finance backgrounds.)
But perhaps the flow of talent from Wall Street to Silicon Alley, and more broadly, from financial services firms to entrepreneurial technology firms nationwide, is just a fad. After all, previous economic downturns have caused the financial services industry to shrink in the short-term. And perhaps this time around, it's just that the contraction is coinciding with a '90s-style tech startup bubble that will soon pop and send all the Zuckerberg-wannabes back to their trading desks.
Harris, of Village Ventures, who was investing in startups in the immediate aftermath of the late-'90s bubble popping, is concerned about what exactly draws the best and brightest to startups in the age of Facebook.
"I think venture capitalists have been guilty of creating a monolithic and, on average, incorrect view of what entrepreneurship means," Harris says. "If entrepreneurship means building the next Facebook, then 99.9 percent of people involved are going to be really disappointed with the outcomes.
"But I don't think this is just a phase," he adds. "Entrepreneurship is about building a career for yourself that doesn't rely on a large corporation and a boss to give you direction and give you security and give you a paycheck. Whether you should raise venture capital is an open question. Whether the outcome is an acquisition or a merger or just a lifetime job in a company that you own part of or all of is another open question. In most cases, the answer is you should not raise venture capital and you should never sell the business -- this is just how you live."
"As for going to back to a world in which people just check their own initiative at the door of a large company when they take the job there and don't reemerge until they're laid off," Harris says, "people's thinking on that has changed."
Correction: An earlier version of this report incorrectly stated that SecondMarket has 200 employees in its New York office. The company actually has 140 employees there.

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Why Washington Wants ‘Finito’ with Vladimir Putin



Regime Change in the Russian Federation? Why Washington Wants ‘Finito’ with Vladimir Putin





Global Research, January 10, 2012
Washington clearly wants ‘finito’ with Russia’s Putin as in basta! or as they said in Egypt last spring, Kefaya--enough!.  Hillary Clinton and friends have apparently decided Russia’s prospective next president, Vladimir Putin, is a major obstacle to their plans. Few however understand why. Russia today, in tandem with China and to a significant degree Iran, form the spine, however shaky, of the only effective global axis of resistance to a world dominated by one sole superpower.
On December 8 several days after election results for Russia’s parliamentary elections were announced, showing a sharp drop in popularity for Prime Minister Putin’s United Russia party, Putin accused the United States and specifically Secretary of State Hillary Clinton of fuelling the Russian opposition protesters and their election protests. Putin stated, “The (US) Secretary of State was quick to evaluate the elections, saying that they are unfair and unjust even before she received materials from the Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (the OSCE international election monitors-w.e.) observers.”[1]
Putin went on to claim that Clinton’s premature comments were the necessary signal to the waiting opposition groups that the US Government would back their protests. Clinton’s comments, the seasoned Russian intelligence pro stated, became a “signal for our activists who began active work with the US Department of State.” [2]
Major western media chose either to downplay the Putin statement or to focus almost entirely on the claims of an emerging Russian opposition movement. A little research shows that, if anything, Putin was downplaying the degree of brazen US Government interference into the political processes of  his country. In this case the country is not Tunisia or Yemen or even Egypt. It is the world’s second nuclear superpower, even if it might still be an economic lesser power. Hillary is playing with thermonuclear fire.
Democracy or something else?
No mistake, Putin is not a world champion practitioner of what most consider democracy. His announcement some months back that he and current President Medvedev had agreed to switch jobs after Russia’s March 4 Presidential vote struck even many Russians as crass power politics and backroom deal-making. That being said, what Washington is doing to interfere with that regime change is more than brazen and interventionist. The same Obama Administration which just signed into law measures effectively ripping to shreds the Bill of Rights of the US Constitution for American citizens[3] is posing as world supreme judge of others’ adherence to what they define as democracy.
Let’s examine closely Putin’s charge of US interference in the election process. If we look, we find openly stated in their August 2011 Annual Report that a Washington-based NGO with the innocuous name, National Endowment for Democracy (NED), is all over the place inside Russia.
The National Endowment for Democracy (NED) is financing an International Press Center in Moscow where some 80 international NGOs can hold press briefings on whatever they choose. They fund numerous “youth advocacy” and leadership workshops to “help youth engage in political activism.” In fact, officially they spent more than $2,783,000 in 2010 on dozens of such programs across Russia. Spending for 2011 won’t be published until later in 2012. [4]
The NED is also financing key parts of the Russian “independent” polling and election monitoring, a crucial part of being able to claim election fraud. They finance in part the Regional Civic Organization in Defense of Democratic Rights and Liberties “GOLOS.” According to the NED Annual Report the funds went “to carry out a detailed analysis of the autumn 2010 and spring 2011 election cycles in Russia, which will include press monitoring, monitoring of political agitation, activity of electoral commissions, and other aspects of the application of electoral legislation in the long-term run-up to the elections.”[5]
In September, 2011, a few weeks before the December elections the NED financed a Washington invitation-only conference featuring the Russian “independent” polling organization, the Levada Center. According to NED’s own website Levada, another recipient of NED money, [6] had done a series of opinion polls, a standard method used in the West to analyze the feelings of citizens. The polls profiled “the mood of the electorate in the run up to the Duma and presidential elections, perceptions of candidates and parties, and voter confidence in the system of ‘managed democracy’ that has been established over the last decade.”
One of the featured speakers at that Washington conference was Vladimir Kara-Murza, member of the federal council of Solidarnost (“Solidarity”), Russia’s democratic opposition movement. He is also “advisor to Duma opposition leader Boris Nemtsov” according to NED. Another speaker came from the right-wing neo-conservative Hudson Institute. [7]
Nemtsov, one of the most prominent figures of the Putin opposition today is also co-chairman of Solidarnost, a name curiously enough imitated from the Cold War days when the CIA financed the Polish Solidarnosc workers’ opposition of Lech Walesa. More on Nemtsov later.
And on December 15, 2011, again in Washington, just as the series of US-supported protests were being launched against Putin, led by Solidarnost and other organizations, the NED held another conference titled, Youth Activism in Russia: Can a New Generation Make a Difference? The featured speaker was Tamirlan Kurbanov, who according to the NED, “most recently served as a program officer at the Moscow office of the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, where he was involved in developing and expanding the capacities of political and civic organizations; promoting citizen participation in public life, youth engagement in particular.” [8] The National Democratic Institute is an arm of the NED.
The Shady History of The National Endowment for Democracy (NED)
Helping youth engage in political activism is precisely what the same NED did in Egypt over the past several years in the lead up to the toppling of Mubarak. The same NED was instrumental by informed accounts in the US-backed “Color Revolutions” in 2003-2004 in Ukraine and Georgia that brought US-backed pro-NATO surrogates to power. The same NED has been active in promoting “human rights” in Myanmar, in Tibet, and China’s oil-rich Xinjiang province. [9] 
As careful analysts of the 2004 Ukraine “Orange revolution” and the numerous other US-financed color revolutions discovered, control of polling and ability to dominate international media perceptions, especially major TV such as CNN or BBC is an essential component of the Washington destabilization agenda. The Levada Center would likely be in a crucial position in this regard to issue polls showing discontent with the regime.
By their description, the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) is a “private, nonprofit foundation dedicated to the growth and strengthening of democratic institutions around the world. Each year, with funding from the US Congress, NED supports more than 1,000 projects of non-governmental groups abroad who are working for democratic goals in more than 90 countries.”[10]
It couldn’t sound more noble or high-minded. However, they prefer to leave out their own true history. In the early 1980’s CIA director Bill Casey convinced President Ronald Reagan to create a plausibly private NGO, the NED, to advance Washington’s global agenda via other means than direct CIA action. It was a part of the process of “privatizing” US intelligence to make their work more “effective.” Allen Weinstein, who helped draft the legislation establishing NED, said in a Washington Post interview in 1991, “A lot of what we do today was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA.”[11] Interesting. The majority of funds for NED come from US taxpayers through Congress. It is in every way, shape and form a US Government intelligence community asset.
The NED was created during the Reagan Administration to function as a de facto CIA, privatized so as to allow it more freedom of action. NED board members are typically drawn from the Pentagon and US intelligence community. It has included retired NATO General Wesley Clark, the man who led the US bombing of Serbia in 1999. Key figures linked to clandestine CIA actions who served on NED’s board have included Otto Reich, John Negroponte, Henry Cisneros and Elliot Abrams. The Chairman of the NED Board of Directors in 2008 was Vin Weber, founder of the ultraconservative organization, Empower America, and campaign fundraiser for George W. Bush. Current NED chairman is John Bohn, former CEO of the controversial Moody’s rating agency which played a nefarious role in the still-unraveling US mortgage securities collapse. As well today’s NED board includes neo-conservative Bush-era ambassador to Iraq and to Afghanistan, Afghan-American Zalmay Khalilzad.[12]
Putin’s well-rehearsed opposition
It’s also instructive to look at the leading opposition figures who seem to have stepped forward in Russia in recent days. The current opposition “poster boy” favorite of Russian youth and especially western media is Russian blogger Alexei Navalny whose blog is titled LiveJournal. Navalny has featured prominently as a quasi-martyr of the protest movement after spending 15 days in Putin’s jail for partaking in a banned protest. At a large protest rally on Christmas Day December 25 in Moscow, Navalny, perhaps intoxicated by seeing too many romantic Sergei Eisenstein films of the 1917 Russian Revolution, told the crowd, “I see enough people here to take the Kremlin and the White House (Russia’s Presidential home-w.e.) right now…”[13]
Western establishment media is infatuated with Navalny. England’s BBC  described Navalny as "arguably the only major opposition figure to emerge in Russia in the past five years," and US Time magazine called him "Russia's Erin Brockovich," a curious reference to the Hollywood film starring Julie Roberts as a researcher and legal activist. However, more relevant is the fact that Navalny went to the elite American East Coast Yale University, also home to the Bush family, where he was a “Yale World Fellow.” [14] 
The charismatic Navalny however is also or has been on the payroll of Washington’s regime-destabilizing National Endowment for Democracy (NED). According to a posting on Navalny’s own blog, LiveJournal, he was supported in 2007-2008 by the NED. [15] [16]
Along with Navalny, key actors in the anti-Putin protest movement are centered around Solidarnost which was created in December 2008 by Boris Nemtsov, Vladimir Ryzhkov and others. Nemtsov is hardly one to protest corruption. According to Business Week Russia of September 23, 2007, Nemtsov introduced Russian banker Boris Brevnov to Gretchen Wilson, a US citizen and an employee of the International Finance Corporation, a financing arm of the World Bank. Wilson and Brevnov married. With the help of Nemtsov Wilson managed to privatize Balakhna Pulp and Paper mill at the giveaway price of just $7 million. The enterprise was sucked dry and then sold to the Wall Street-Swiss investment bank, CS First Boston bank. The annual turnover of the mill was reportedly $250 million. [17]
CS First Boston bank also paid for Nemtsov's trips to the very expensive Davos World Economic Forum. When Nemtsov became a member of the cabinet, his protégé Brevnov was appointed the chairman of the Unified Energy System of Russia JSC. Two years later in 2009 Boris Nemtsov, today’s “Mr anti-corruption,” used his influence reportedly to get Brevnov off the hook for charges of embezzling billions from assets of Unified Energy System. [18]
Nemtsov also took money from jailed Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky in 1999 when the latter was using his billions to try to buy the Russian parliament or Duma. In 2004 Nemtsov met with exiled billionaire oligarch Boris Berezovsky in a secret gathering with other exiled Russian tycoons. When Nemtsov was detailed by Russian authorities for allegations of foreign funding of his new political party, “For Russia without Lawlessness and Corruption,”  US Senators John McCain and Joe Liberman and Mike Hammer of the Obama National Security Council came to support of Nemtsov. [19]
Nemtsov’s close crony, Vladimir Ryzhkov of Solidarnost is also closely tied to the Swiss Davos circles, even founding a Siberian Davos. According to Russian press accounts from April 2005, Ryzhkov formed a Committee 2008 in 2003 to “draw” funds of the imprisoned Khodorkovsky along with soliciting funds from fugitive oligarchs such as Boris Berezovsky and western foundations such as the Soros Foundation. The stated aim of the effort was to rally “democratic” forces against Putin. On May 23, 2011 Ryzhkov, Nemtzov and several others filed to register a new Party of Peoples’ Freedom to ostensibly field a presidential candidate against Putin in 2012.[20] 
Another prominent face in the recent anti-Putin rallies is former world chess champion turned right-wing politician, Garry Kasparov, another founder of Solidarnost. Kasparov was identified several years ago as being a board member of a Washington neo-conservative military think-tank. In April 2007, Kasparov admitted he was a board member of the National Security Advisory Council of Center for Security Policy, a "non-profit, non-partisan national security organization that specializes in identifying policies, actions, and resource needs that are vital to American security." Inside Russia Kasparov is more infamous for his earlier financial ties to Leonid Nevzlin, former Yukos vice-president and partner of Michael Khodorokvsky. Nevzlin fled to Israel on being charged in Russia on charges of murder and hiring contract killers to eliminate “objectionable people” while Yukos vice-president. [21]
In 2009 Kasparov and Boris Nemtsov met with no less than Barack Obama to discuss Russia’s opposition to Putin at the US President’s personal invitation at Washington’s Ritz Carlton Hotel. Nemtsov had called for Obama to meet with opposition forces in Russia: “If the White House agrees to Putin’s suggestion to speak only with pro-Putin organizations… this will mean that Putin has won, but not only that: Putin will become be assured that Obama is weak,” he said. During the same 2009 US trip Nemtsov was invited to speak at the New York Council on Foreign Relations, perhaps the most influential US foreign policy think-tank. Significantly, not only has the US State Department and US-backed political NGOs such as NED poured millions into building an anti-Putin coalition inside Russia. The President personally has intervened into the process.[22]
Ryzhkov, Nemtzov, Navalty and Putin’s former Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin were all involved in organizing the December 25th Moscow Christmas anti-Putin rally which drew an estimated 120,000.[23]
Why Putin?
The salient question is why Putin at this point? We need not look far for the answer.


Washington and especially Barack Obama’s Administration don’t give a hoot about whether Russia is democratic or not. Their concern is the obstacle to Washington’s plans for Full Spectrum Dominance of the planet that a Putin Presidency will represent. According to the Russian Constitution, the President of the Russian Federation head of state, supreme commander-in-chief and holder of the highest office in the Russian Federation. He will take direct control of defense and foreign policy.
We must ask what policy? Clearly strong countermeasures against the blatant NATO encirclement of Russia with Washington’s dangerous ballistic missile installations around Russia will be high on Putin’s agenda. Hillary Clinton’s “reset” will be in the dustbin if it is not already. We can also expect a more aggressive use of Russia’s energy card with pipeline diplomacy to deepen economic ties between European NATO members such as Germany, France and Italy, ultimately weakening the EU support for aggressive NATO measures against Russia. We can expect a deepening of Russia’s turn towards Eurasia, especially with China, Iran and perhaps India to firm up the shaky spine of resistance to Washington’s New World Order plans.
It will take more than a few demonstrations in sub-freezing weather in Moscow and St. Petersburg by a gaggle of corrupt or shady opposition figures such as Nemtsov or  Kasparov to derail Russia. What is clear is that Washington is pushing on all fronts—Iran and Syria, where Russia has a vital naval port, on China, now on Russia, and on the Eurozone countries led by Germany. It has the smell of an end-game attempt by a declining superpower.
The United States today is a de facto bankrupt nuclear superpower.  The reserve currency role of the dollar is being challenged as never since Bretton Woods in 1944. That role along with maintaining the United States as the world’s unchallenged military power have been the basis of the American Century hegemony since 1945.
Weakening the role of the dollar in international trade and ultimately as reserve currency, China is now settling trade with Japan in bilateral currencies, side-stepping the dollar. Russia is implementing similar steps with her major trade partners. The primary reason Washington launched a full-scale currency war against the Euro in late 2009 was to preempt a growing threat that China and others would turn away from the dollar to the Euro as reserve currency. That is no small matter. In effect Washington finances its foreign wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya and elsewhere through the fact that China and other trade surplus nations invest their surplus trade dollars in US government Treasury debt. Were that to shift significantly, US interest rates would rise substantially and the financial pressures on Washington would become immense.
Faced with growing erosion of her unchallenged global status as sole superpower, Washington appears now to be turning increasingly to raw military force to hold that. For that to succeed Russia must be neutralized along with China and Iran. This will be the prime agenda of whoever is next US President.     

F. William Engdahl is the author of A Century of War: Anglo-American Oil Politics and the New World Order, He may be reached via his website at www.engdahl.oilgeopolitics.net 


Notes
[1] Alexei Druzhinin, Putin says US encouraging Russian opposition, RIA Novosti, Moscow, December 8, 2011
[2] Ibid.
[3] Jonathan Turley, The NDAA's historic assault on American liberty, guardian.co.uk, 2 January 2012, accessed in http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2012/jan/02/ndaa-historic-assault-american-liberty.
[4] National Endowment for Democracy, Russia, from NED Annual Report 2010, Washington, DC, published in August 2011, accessed in http://www.ned.org/where-we-work/eurasia/russia.
[5] Ibid.
[6] Ibid.
[7] NED, Elections in Russia: Polling and Perspectives, September 14, 2011, accessed in http://ned.org/events/elections-in-russia-polling-and-perspectives.
[8] NED, Youth Activism in Russia: Can a New Generation Make a Difference?, December 15, 2011, accessed in http://ned.org/events/youth-activism-in-russia-can-a-new-generation-make-a-difference.
[9] F. William Engdahl, Full Spectrum Dominance: Totalitarian Democracy in the New World Order, 2010, edition. Engdahl press. The book describes in detail the origins of the NED and various US-sponsored “human rights” NGOs and how they have been used to topple regimes not friendly to a larger USA geopolitical agenda.
[10] National Endowment for Democracy, About Us, accessed in 
www.ned.org.
[11] David Ignatius, Openness is the Secret to Democracy, Washington Post National Weekly Edition, 30 September-6 October,1991, 24-25.
[12] F. William Engdahl, Op. Cit., p.50.
[13] Yulia Ponomareva, Navalny and Kudrin boost giant opposition rally, RIA Novosti, Moscow, December 25, 2011.
[14] Yale University, Yale World Fellows: Alexey Navalny, 2010, accessed in
http://www.yale.edu/worldfellows/fellows/navalny.html.
[15] Alexey Navalny, emails between Navalny and Conatser, accessed in Russian (English summary provided to the author by www.warandpeace.ru) on 
http://alansalbiev.livejournal.com/28124.html.
[16] Ibid.
[17] Business Week Russia, Boris Nemtsov: Co-chairman of Solidarnost political movement, Business Week Russia, September 23, 2007, accessed in 
http://www.rumafia.com/person.php?id=1648.
[18] Ibid.
[19] Ibid.
[20] Russian Mafia.ru, Vladimir Ryzhkov: Co-chairman of the Party of People's Freedom, accessed in
http://www.rumafia.com/person.php?id=1713.
[21] Russian Mafia.ru, Garry Kasparov: The leader of United Civil Front, accessed in
http://www.rumafia.com/person.php?id=1518.
[22] The OtherRussia, Obama Will Meet With Russian Opposition, July 3, 2009, accessed in
http://www.theotherrussia.org/2009/07/03/obama-will-meet-with-russian-opposition/.
[23] Yulia Ponomareva, op. Cit.
 


F. William Engdahl is a frequent contributor to Global Research.  Global Research Articles by F. William Engdahl