Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

News & Supplemental  

“Sachsenhausen:” Bernie Sanders’ Neo-Liberal Buddy Jeffrey Sachs


WFMU-FM is pod­cast­ing For The Record–You can sub­scribe to the pod­cast HERE.

You can sub­scribe to e‑mail alerts from Spitfirelist.com HERE.

You can sub­scribe to RSS feed from Spitfirelist.com HERE.

You can sub­scribe to the com­ments made on pro­grams and posts–an excel­lent source of infor­ma­tion in, and of, itself HERE.

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash dri­ve that can be obtained here. The new dri­ve is a 32-giga­byte dri­ve that is cur­rent as of the pro­grams and arti­cles post­ed by late sum­mer of 2018.

COMMENT: In FTR #953, we looked at some of Bernie Sanders’ “inter­est­ing” rela­tion­ships and pol­i­cy posi­tions, this against the back­ground of the decades-long GOP strat­e­gy mar­ry­ing elec­toral pol­i­tics and covert oper­a­tions. The lat­est polit­i­cal out­crop­ping of Sanders’ polit­i­cal man­i­fes­ta­tion is The Sanders Insti­tute. In addi­tion to Tul­si Gab­bard, whom we dis­cussed in FTR #‘s941,942 and 945, Team Sanders fea­tures Jef­frey Sacks, a key finan­cial advis­er to Boris Yeltsin and among the archi­tects of the eco­nom­ic deba­cle that fol­lowed the imple­men­ta­tion of poli­cies favored by Sachs and Com­pa­ny.

A polit­i­cal ani­mal of Sachs’ neo-Lib­er­al stripe is an odd inclu­sion in the Sanders Pan­theon. We have not­ed oth­ers:

  1. Rove financed Sanders cam­paign through the Amer­i­can Cross­roads super-PAC. ” . . . Amer­i­can Crossroads—founded by for­mer Bush advis­er Karl Rove—and sev­er­al oth­er con­ser­v­a­tive-backed super PACs have spent the last month inten­tion­al­ly fuel­ing the Bern, but their zeal has more to do with an effort to weak­en Hillary Clin­ton, whom they still see as the like­ly Demo­c­ra­t­ic nom­i­nee and hard­er to defeat in the gen­er­al elec­tion. . . . Cross­roads is one of sev­er­al groups that has released ads that have been aimed at brand­ing Sanders as the only true pro­gres­sive in the race—a strat­e­gy the Ver­mont senator’s cam­paign also embraces. . . .”
  2. Gra­ham E. Fuller says that he was ” . . . . gal­va­nized at watch­ing the spec­ta­cle of Bernie Sanders pro­claim­ing issues in his cam­paign that had been vir­tu­al­ly off lim­its for polit­i­cal dis­cus­sion for decades: gap between rich and poor, rapa­cious inter­na­tion­al trade deals, a fair wage, free uni­ver­si­ty edu­ca­tion, the call for US bal­ance (gasp!) in han­dling the Arab-Israeli, issue, etc. The great thing about Bernie — even if he prob­a­bly won’t get nom­i­nat­ed — is that he has pushed hawk­ish, friend-of-Wall-Street Hillary to the left. . . .”
  3. Fuller’s actu­al views are the oppo­site of Sanders pol­i­cy points: “. . . Fuller comes from that fac­tion of CIA Cold War­riors who believed (and still appar­ently believe) that fun­da­men­tal­ist Islam, even in its rad­i­cal jiha­di form, does not pose a threat to the West, for the sim­ple rea­son that fun­da­men­tal­ist Islam is con­ser­v­a­tive, against social jus­tice, against social­ism and redis­tri­b­u­tion of wealth, and in favor of hier­ar­chi­cal socio-eco­nom­ic struc­tures. Social­ism is the com­mon ene­my to both cap­i­tal­ist Amer­ica and to Wah­habi Islam, accord­ing to Fuller. . . ‘There is no main­stream Islam­ic organization...with rad­i­cal social views,’ he wrote. Clas­si­cal Islam­ic the­ory envis­ages the role of the state as lim­ited to facil­i­tat­ing the well-being of mar­kets and mer­chants rather than con­trol­ling them. Islamists have always pow­er­fully object­ed to social­ism and communism....Islam has nev­er had prob­lems with the idea that wealth is uneven­ly dis­trib­uted.’ . . . .”
  4. Faisal Gill, a for­mer oper­a­tions direc­tor for Norquist’s Islam­ic Free Mar­ket Insti­tute and offi­cial with George W. Bush’s Depart­ment of Home­land Secu­ri­ty is now the head of Ver­mon­t’s Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty, a post he has used to join Bernie Sanders and Tul­si Gab­bard to pro­mote Kei­th Elli­son as head of the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Nation­al Com­mit­tee. Elli­son is now the deputy chair of the DNC, the post for­mer­ly held by Gab­bard. ” . . . . Yet some offi­cials remain con­cerned that Gill appar­ent­ly enjoys the polit­i­cal pro­tec­tion of Norquist, the archi­tect of the 1994 Repub­li­can elec­tion sweep that brought Geor­gia Repub­li­can Newt Gin­grich to pow­er as House speak­er. Norquist speaks of ‘crush­ing’ his polit­i­cal oppo­nents and dis­miss­es those who don’t agree with his anti-tax, anti-gov­ern­ment agen­da as ‘Bol­she­viks.’ His pow­er derives from a for­mi­da­ble coali­tion of evan­gel­i­cal, busi­ness and oth­er con­ser­v­a­tive groups that he con­trols to push favored GOP issues, as well as from his close rela­tion­ship with White House polit­i­cal chief Karl Rove. . . .”

The pro­gram also notes a num­ber of oth­er things about the Sanders cam­paign:

  1. He was pro­mot­ing open pri­maries for the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty, which would enable Karl Rove and the Repub­li­cans to choose the Demo­c­ra­t­ic nom­i­nee.
  2. Sanders was a Pres­i­den­tial elec­tor for the Social­ist Work­ers Party, embrac­ing a stance which would have made him ter­mi­nal­ly vul­ner­a­ble had he got­ten the Demo­c­ra­t­ic nom­i­na­tion. ” . . . . In 1980, Sanders served as an elec­tor for the Social­ist Work­ers Par­ty, which was found­ed on the prin­ci­ples of Leon Trot­sky. Accord­ing to the New York Times, that par­ty called for abol­ish­ing the mil­i­tary bud­get. It also called for “sol­i­dar­i­ty” with the rev­o­lu­tion­ary regimes in Iran, Nicaragua, Grena­da, and Cuba; this was in the mid­dle of the Iran­ian hostage cri­sis. . . .”
  3. The SWP was a vehi­cle for infil­tra­tion and the acqui­si­tion of a “left cov­er” by Nazis and spooks, includ­ing Lee Har­vey Oswald.
  4. The Third Reich saw Leon Trot­sky’s method­ol­o­gy as wor­thy of emu­la­tion. (The SWP is a Trot­skyite polit­i­cal par­ty.) ” . . . . ‘You should read his books,’ he [Hitler] barked. ‘We can learn a lot from him.’ . . .”
  5. To what extent have the GOP and the over­lap­ping Under­ground Reich focused on Sanders (with­out his knowl­edge) as a vehi­cle for infil­trat­ing the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty? In FTR #‘s 941, 942 and 945, we not­ed the numer­ous fas­cist con­nec­tions of Tul­si Gab­bard, one of the dri­ving forces behind Sanders’ ascent. To what extent has the Trot­skyite tem­plate served as a vehi­cle for Gab­bard, and, per­haps, Elli­son to infil­trate the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty?

It is impor­tant to note that, in effect serv­ing as an advance ele­ment or Fifth Col­umn for the neo-Lib­er­al poli­cies presided over by Yeltsin and craft­ed by Sachs & Com­pa­ny, the Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion served as an exten­sion of The Cru­sade For Free­dom and the pro­jec­tion of the ABN milieu into the GOP. This was the polit­i­cal pre­de­ces­sor to the Yeltsin poli­cies.

 Dom­i­nat­ing the Rea­gan admin­is­tra­tion, the ABN milieu was pro­ject­ed back into East­ern Europe and the for­mer Sovi­et Union by the Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion, heav­i­ly over­lapped with Las­z­lo Pasz­tor and the GOP Nazis dat­ing from the Cru­sade For Free­dom.

Heav­i­ly over­lap­ping the Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion of Paul Weyrich, the GOP “eth­nics” and the OUN/B, in par­tic­u­lar, played a lead­ing role in the polit­i­cal tutor­ing of Boris Yeltsin’s IRG orga­ni­za­tion. Ulti­mate­ly, Yeltsin’s forces were instru­men­tal in break­ing up the U.S.S.R.

We note that the head of the lib­er­a­tion sub-group of the Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion was Hun­gar­i­an Arrow Cross vet­er­an Las­z­lo Pasz­tor, the head of the GOP “eth­nics.” (This audio excerpt is from AFA #36. The text is from “The Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion Goes East” by Russ Bel­lant and Louis Wolf, from Covert Action Infor­ma­tion Bul­letin Issue #35.

“The Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion Goes East” by Russ Bel­lant and Louis Wolf; Covert Action Infor­ma­tion Bul­letin #35; Fall/1990.

With the rapid pace of polit­i­cal change sweep­ing East­ern Europe and the Union of Sovi­et Social­ist Republics, many oppor­tu­ni­ties have emerged for west­ern inter­ests to inter­vene in the pol­i­tics of  that region. In some cas­es, such a vac­u­um has been cre­at­ed that vir­tu­al strangers to the area sev­er­al years ago are now able to active­ly par­tic­i­pate in chang­ing those soci­eties from with­in.

These inter­ven­tions are not only being prac­ticed by main­stream orga­ni­za­tions. The involve­ment of the Unit­ed States Far Right brings with it the poten­tial revival of fas­cist orga­ni­za­tions in the East. One U.S. group, the Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion, has been plahy­ing a role in East­ern Euro­pean and Sovi­et pol­i­tics and has ties to Boris Yeltsin and the Inter-Region­al Deputies Group (IRG) in the U.S.S.R.

The Free Con­gress Foun­da­tion (FCF) was found­ed in 1974 by Paul Weyrich as the Com­mit­tee for the Sur­vival of a Free Con­gress. Weyrich, who had start­ed the Her­itage Foun­da­tion the year before, was heav­i­ly fund­ed by the Coors fam­i­ly for both orga­ni­za­tions.

Weyrich has kept one foot in the right wing of the Repub­li­can Par­ty while dal­ly­ing with the racist Right and the extreme Chris­t­ian Right. In 1976, for instance, he and a hand­ful of oth­er New Rights (William Rush­er, Mor­ton Black­well, Richard Viguerie) attempt­ed to take over the seg­re­ga­tion­ist  Amer­i­can Inde­pen­dent Par­ty (AIP), formed by George Wal­lace in 1968. The AIP was an amal­gam of Ku Klux Klan and John Birch Soci­ety ele­ments. . . .

. . . . The IRG was estab­lished by Andrei Sakharov, Boris Yeltsin and oth­ers in the sum­mer of 1989. By the end of that year, a train­ing school had been estab­lished for can­di­dates to put for­ward the IRG pro­gram. Their elec­toral suc­cess this year pro­pelled Yeltsin to the lead­er­ship of the Russ­ian Sovi­et Social­ist Repub­lic. He imme­di­ate­ly began forg­ing col­lab­o­ra­tive rela­tion­ships with the deeply reac­tionary lead­ers of the Lithuan­ian Sajud­is par­ty. The IRG has also served as a source of right-wing pres­sure on Gor­bachev to dis­man­tle social­ism and the Sovi­et Union itself.

One of the key dan­gers in this agen­da is the polit­i­cal vac­u­um it cre­ates, allow­ing ultra-nation­al­ist forces in a num­ber of republics to take pow­er. Such nation­al­ist and fas­cist ele­ments are already evi­dent in Lithua­nia and the Ukraine. In the lat­ter repub­lic, the pro-Nazi Orga­ni­za­tion of Ukrain­ian Nation­al­ists (OUN) has gained influ­ence in sev­er­al par­ties and has mobi­lized large demon­stra­tions that hon­or OUN lead­ers who abet­ted Hitler’s war on the East­ern Front. Sim­i­lar­ly, sev­er­al deputies Sajud­is deputies served in Ger­man mil­i­tary units in 1944, and Sajud­is has made dec­la­ra­tions against eth­nic Rus­sians liv­ing in Lithua­nia. Accord­ing to some reports, Poles have also been den­i­grat­ed.

It should also be not­ed that the “rad­i­cal reformer” Boris Yeltsin has dal­lied with Pamy­at, the fore­most Russ­ian fas­cist group to emerge in the last sev­er­al years. Pamy­at’s vir­u­lent anti-Semi­tism com­pares to the crude pro­pa­gan­da of the ear­ly Ger­man Nazi Par­ty in the 1920’s.

The FCF is not entire­ly dis­con­nect­ed from the his­to­ry of the OUN. The Trea­sur­er of the FCF board is George­town Uni­ver­si­ty Pro­fes­sor Charles Moser. Moser is also serves on the edi­to­r­i­al advi­so­ry board of the Ukrain­ian Quar­ter­ly, pub­lished by the Ukrain­ian Con­gress Com­mit­tee of Amer­i­ca, a group dom­i­nat­ed by the OUN. The Ukrain­ian Quar­ter­ly has praised mil­i­tary units of the Ger­man SS and oth­er­wise jus­ti­fied the OUN alliance with the Third Reich which reflects the fact that the OUN was polit­i­cal­ly and mil­i­tar­i­ly allied with Hitler and the Nazi occu­pa­tion of the Ukraine.

The OUN, an inter­na­tion­al semi-secret cadre orga­ni­za­tion head­quar­tered in Bavaria, has received finan­cial assis­tance from the late Franz Joseph Strauss, the right­ist head of the Bavar­i­an state. Strauss also had a work­ing rela­tion­ship with Weyrich. . . .

. . . . Final­ly, FCF’s insin­u­a­tion into the pol­i­tics of the East must be judged by their selec­tion of Las­z­lo Pasz­tor to head their Lib­er­a­tion Sup­port Alliance, “which seeks to lib­er­ate peo­ples in Cen­tral and East­ern Euro­pean Nations.”

Pasz­tor’s involve­ment in East Euro­pean pol­i­tics began in World War II when he joined the youth orga­ni­za­tion of the Arrow Cross, the Nazi par­ty of Hun­gary.

When the Arrow Cross was installed in pow­er by a Ger­man com­man­do oper­a­tion, Pasz­tor was sent to Berlin to help facil­i­tate the liai­son between the Arrow Cross and Hitler.

Pasz­tor was tried and served two years in jail for his Arrow Cross activ­i­ties after an anti­com­mu­nist gov­ern­ment was elect­ed in 1945. He even­tu­al­ly came to the U.S. and estab­lished the eth­nic arm of the Repub­li­can Nation­al Com­mit­tee for Richard Nixon. He brought oth­er Nazi col­lab­o­ra­tors from the East­ern front into the GOP. Some were lat­er found to have par­tic­i­pat­ed in mass mur­der dur­ing the war.

The dor­mant Arrow Cross has sur­faced again in Hun­gary, where there have been attempts to lift the ban on the orga­ni­za­tion. Pasz­tor spent sev­er­al months in Hun­gary. When Weyrich lat­er con­duct­ed train­ing there, he was pro­vid­ed a list of Pasz­tor’s con­tacts inside the coun­try. Weyrich reports that he con­duct­ed train­ing for the recent­ly formed and now gov­ern­ing New Demo­c­ra­t­ic Forum.

Pasz­tor claims to have assist­ed some of his friends in Hun­gary in get­ting NED funds through his advi­so­ry posi­tion with NED. In 1989 he spoke at the Her­itage Foun­da­tion under the spon­sor­ship of the Anti-Bol­she­vik Bloc of Nations (ABN), a multi­na­tion­al umbrel­la orga­ni­za­tion of emi­gre fas­cists and Nazis found­ed in alliance with Hitler in 1943. It is led by the OUN. Pasz­tor spoke for the “Hun­gar­i­an Orga­ni­za­tion” of ABN, which is the Arrow Cross. . . . .

“The Long, Strange Career of Jef­frey Sachs” by Doug Hen­wood; Left Busi­ness Observ­er; August of 2005.

. . . . Sachs was an advi­sor to the Yeltsin gov­ern­ment in Rus­sia from 1991 to 1994, and also advised Poland, Slove­nia, and Esto­nia as they were begin­ning their tran­si­tions to cap­i­tal­ism. The last three are mixed suc­cess­es — on the sur­face, Poland looks like a suc­cess to some, but with the tran­si­tion came high­er unem­ploy­ment, falling real wages, and aim­less cycles of polit­i­cal dis­con­tent. Rus­sia, though, was a thor­ough dis­as­ter, one of the worst col­laps­es in human his­to­ry. Liv­ing stan­dards fell and the pop­u­la­tion shrank, an almost unprece­dent­ed event in a coun­try not at war.

[U2 Singer] Bono’s new best friend refus­es to accept any blame for the dis­as­ter, offer­ing the defense that the Rus­sians did­n’t take his advice, and the West did­n’t come through with the big aid pack­age he insist­ed was nec­es­sary. Appar­ent­ly this is an well-prac­ticed strat­e­gy. A 1992 Euromoney pro­file notes: “Sachs is reluc­tant to acknowl­edge mis­takes, defin­ing them in terms of regret when gov­ern­ments do not take his advice.” In that case, he blamed Poland for not pri­va­tiz­ing fast enough. Con­trast­ing with Sach­s’s regrets over advice not tak­en, sev­er­al gov­ern­ments he’s con­sult­ed with have since char­ac­ter­ized the mate­r­i­al pro­duced by him and his asso­ciates as irrel­e­vant, or, as a Sloven­ian offi­cial put it at the time, “simplistic...kindergarten stuff.”

But the out­come illus­trates pre­cise­ly the dan­ger of hav­ing the likes of Sachs para­chute in bear­ing the time­less truths of neo­clas­si­cal eco­nom­ics. Any­one who knew Rus­sia knew that any rapid pri­va­ti­za­tion would imme­di­ate­ly lead to the cre­ation of a new cor­rupt elite through mas­sive theft of state prop­er­ty. Any­one who knew Wash­ing­ton knew that no big aid pack­age was ever going to come through; adding to usu­al U.S. cheap­ness, a lot of hard­lin­ers want­ed to see Rus­sia ground into the dirt. In the words of for­mer World Bank econ­o­mist David Eller­man, who fre­quent­ly col­lid­ed with Sach­s’s work in Slove­nia and has fol­lowed him intent­ly ever since, “Only the mix­ture of Amer­i­can tri­umphal­ism and the aca­d­e­m­ic arro­gance of neo­clas­si­cal eco­nom­ics could pro­duce such a lethal dose of gall.”  . . .  .

Dur­ing what offi­cial­dom called the tran­si­tion, there were divi­sions between those who want­ed to reform the exist­ing social­ist sys­tem and exper­i­ment with hybrid forms of own­er­ship, and what Eller­man calls the “clean post­so­cial­ist rev­o­lu­tion­ar­ies,” many of them with Amer­i­can eco­nom­ics PhDs, who dis­missed the reform­ers as taint­ed nomen­klatu­ra and want­ed imme­di­ate pri­va­ti­za­tion. Adding to the pres­tige of the rev­o­lu­tion­ar­ies were their trust­ed for­eign advi­sors, like those from the Har­vard Insti­tute for Inter­na­tion­al Devel­op­ment (HIID), led by Jef­frey Sachs and part­ly fund­ed by the U.S. gov­ern­ment. . . .

. . . . HIID even­tu­al­ly col­lapsed in scan­dal, when it was revealed that the prin­ci­pals of its Russ­ian project, Andrei Shleifer and Jonathan Hay, along with their wives (who hap­pened to be mutu­al fund man­agers), had been buy­ing Russ­ian stocks and dick­er­ing for the priv­i­lege of get­ting the coun­try’s first mutu­al fund license, while dis­pens­ing advice to the Russ­ian gov­ern­ment. (Shleifer was one of the trin­i­ty of so-called Har­vard Wun­derkinder who were to Rus­sia what the Chica­go Boys were to Pinochet’s Chile; the oth­er two were Lawrence Sum­mers — and Sachs.) The U.S. gov­ern­ment sued, and Har­vard shut­tered the insti­tute. Sachs, who was not involved in the scan­dal, decamped to Colum­bia (it’s said there was no going-away par­ty from his Har­vard col­leagues). At Colum­bia, he was appoint­ed to head its new Earth Insti­tute, an inter­dis­ci­pli­nary enter­prise that would bring togeth­er phys­i­cal, health, and social sci­en­tists to pro­mote sus­tain­able eco­nom­ic devel­op­ment. . . .


No comments for ““Sachsenhausen:” Bernie Sanders’ Neo-Liberal Buddy Jeffrey Sachs”

Post a comment