COMMENT: For many years, we’ve used Lucy Komisar’s illuminating research on the nefarious world of “Offshore” finance and business. Although many of the areas that feature businesses catering to this “Funny Money” are, in fact “offshore,” the term refers to financial repositories that permit customers to escape financial scrutiny and accountability and, thereby, taxes.
Among the most active of these havens is the Cayman Islands, where The VerMITTler has parked many millions of dollars. (“Vermittler” is the German word for “agent.” We’ve applied it as Mitt Romney’s nickname. Later in this post, we will begin to see how appropriate this term is.)
On his Cannonfire blogspot, Joseph Cannon gives us a worthy post affording an overview of several recent stories about The VerMITTler’s offshore dealings. As we have seen, “offshore” is as insidious as it gets–it is where terrorists, organized crime syndicates, transnational corporations, intelligence services and fascist conspirators park their funds in order to escape taxes and the scrutiny of law enforcement and those they victimize.
A number of articles cited by Cannon indicate that just such sinister elements lurk in the shadows of The VerMITTler’s offshore financial dealings. Readers are encouraged to examine these overlapping stories from The Nation, Vanity Fair and Skydancing.
In connection with this post, there are a number of points that come to mind, including:
- The VerMITTler continues to be paid by Bain Capital more than ten years after he left the firm. Why?
- The VerMITTler’s trusts don’t appear to be nearly as “blind” as they are represented as being.
- One of the original investors in Bain Capital was the late Robert Maxwell, who had strong connections with Israeli intelligence. (In the past, we’ve noted The VerMITTler’s links to Benjamin Netanyahu and the Israeli right-wing. The Maxwell association with Bain may be part of the same political relationship.)
- The Poma family of El Salvador also counted among the original Bain investors.
- The Pomas–one of the 14 families that owned El Salvador–were prominent backers of the late Roberto D’Aubuisson.
- Kingpin of the ARENA Party, D’Aubuisson presided over the death squads that bloodied El Salvador on behalf of that country’s fascist owners and with direction from elements of U.S. intelligence. (D’Aubuisson was nicknamed “Blowtorch Bob” by U.S. acquaintances because of his penchant for torturing captives with a blowtorch.)
- Listeners seeking background on the genesis of Latin American death squads and their links to international fascism and elements of U.S. intelligence are referred to AFA #15.
- The available evidence suggests that Bain may well have served as a money-laundering vehicle.
EXCERPT: . . . The question before us is a simple one: What is Bain? This post won’t offer a definitive answer, but it will offer a starting point to anyone who wants to research a startling possibility: Bain began life as a money laundry for the CIA. . . .
. . . Dirty money. Let’s get back to the Nation piece. Here’s where things get really weird. (I’ve added paragraph breaks to aid readability.)
“Did Bain serve as a tax haven for foreign criminals? As Shaxson explains, ‘Private equity is one channel for this secrecy-shrouded foreign money to enter the United States, and a filing for Mitt Romney’s first $37 million Bain Capital Fund, of 1984, provides a rare window into this.
One foreign investor, of $2 million, was the newspaper tycoon, tax evader, and fraudster Robert Maxwell, who fell from his yacht, and drowned, off of the Canary Islands in 1991 in strange circumstances, after looting his company’s pension fund.
The Bain filing also names Eduardo Poma, a member of one of the ‘14 families’ oligarchy that has controlled most of El Salvador’s wealth for decades; oddly, Poma is listed as sharing a Miami address with two anonymous companies that invested $1.5 million between them.
The filings also show a Geneva-based trustee overseeing a trust that invested $2.5 million, a Bahamas corporation that put in $3 million, and three corporations in the tax haven of Panama, historically a favored destination for Latin-American dirty money—’one of the filthiest money-laundering sinks in the world,’ as a US Customs official once put it.” . . .
. . . . Eventually, ARENA came to power in 1988, and instituted a murderous campaign against leftists, intellectuals, priests and nuns; the party ruled with the proverbial iron first for two decades.
According to a 1985 CIA intelligence assessment, “Behind ARENA’s legitimate exterior lies a terrorist network led by D’Aubuisson henchmen and funded by wealthy Salvadoran expatriates residing in Guatemala and the United States.” One of the powers behind ARENA was and is billionaire Ricardo Poma, a relative of Eduardo, listed above. Ricardo runs the Grupo Poma, which owns much of El Salvador. From Wikipedia:
Ricardo Poma is a close friend of Mitt Romney and was an early investor in Bain Capital.
From a speech that Romney gave in 2007:
“I owe a great deal to Americans of Latin American descent. When I was starting my business, I came to Miami to find partners that would believe in me, and that would finance my enterprise. My partners were Ricardo Poma, Miguel Duenas, Pancho Soler, Frank Kardonski, and Diego Ribandinarea. . . .”