‘The best democracy that US money can buy’ - ABDULLAH MURADOĞLU

‘The best democracy that US money can buy’

In my previous column, I mentioned that the so-called Washington-based “Turkish Democracy Project” think tank boasts the same members of the United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) initiative, which began its operations in 2008. I also drew attention to how both initiatives were financed by Zionist businessmen. Besides John Bolton, both think tanks count among their members hawkish anti-Turkey and Iran politicians, diplomats, academics, ex-intelligence agents.

The activities of the "United Against Nuclear Iran" initiative afford us clues as to what kind of actions the so-called "Turkish Democracy Project" will take in the upcoming period and with whom it will do business. 

These activities included ramping up pressure on Western companies doing business with Iran, bolstering anti-Iranian sentiment in print and visual media, and indirectly lobbying to shape U.S. foreign policy in favor of imposing economic sanctions and embargoes. Members of the UANI, such as John Bolton, also make frequent appearances at Europe conferences of the "People's Mujahideen Organization of Iran," which the United States has previously listed as a terrorist organization.

The two biggest financiers of the anti-Iran initiative were Netanyahu's close friend, billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, and businessman Thomas Scott Kaplan, who made his fortune in precious metals, especially gold and silver. 

Kaplan is one of the financiers of the Turkish Democracy Project. Adelson, one of Trump's key donors, died earlier this year. It was him who persuaded Trump to appoint John Bolton as America’s National Security Advisor.

The indirect lobbying activities of the anti-Iran initiative have also long been the subject of studies in the U.S. 

American journalists Katherine Sullivan, Eli Clifton, and the director of the “Foreign Influence Transparency Initiative” at the Washington-based “Center for International Policy” (CIP) Dr. Ben Freeman's research reveals how UANI shaped U.S. foreign policy. 

Dr. Freeman also published a book called “The Foreign Policy Auction” in 2012.  According to the author, foreign meddling was a depressing issue. He also noted that lobbying funds to manipulate political processes was systematically undermining U.S. foreign policy. Clifton, on the other hand, described the UANI as a "microcosm" in terms of comprehending how foreign policy is impacted.

All these authors were dealing with the decay of political processes in which organized lobbying interests trumped public ones. The average American, on the other hand, only saw the tip of the iceberg. 

According to these authors, there was much more than meets the eye. The financial resources of so-called non-profit organizations like UANI were not exactly transparent. Indeed, it was arduous for the authors to identify its benefactors. After scrutinizing complex connections and financial networks, it was ascertained that some of the top executives of the UANI were receiving huge salaries by “working” in Thomas Kaplan's companies.

The connections between UANI and Thomas Kaplan run deeper than just the businessman’s staunch pro-Israel stance. 

Kaplan is a businessman who invested in precious metals such as gold and silver. In fact, he was accused of placing all his bets on geopolitical uncertainty, conflict and chaos. Kaplan had also long argued that the economic rise of China, the decline of the U.S. as a global power, the weakening of the dollar as a reserve currency, the increasing vulnerability of the West, as well as the political positions of Russia, Iran and Turkey would perpetually increase the prices of precious metals, thus he called on investors to buy shares in his companies. Therefore, Kaplan's only concern was not Israel but also how to make a bucketload of money. According to Kaplan, China's gold reserves were well above the officially disclosed amount.

Let us recall that the name of Trump's National Security Advisor, John Bolton, was frequently mentioned in attempts to overthrow the government in Venezuela through a coup. Bolton admitted in an interview with Fox News that the drilling of Venezuelan oil by American companies would make a very significant economic difference for the United States. Meanwhile, Venezuela does not only posssess significant oil reserves but also the world's largest gold mines. It was not for nothing that Dr. Freeman aptly named his book "Foreign Policy Auction."

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