The Russia demonization is getting pretty polished these days. I've been reading the latest MSN propaganda about the Russians adopting "conspiracy" explanations for the downing of Flight 9268. It cites a group I had never heard of before -- the Legatum Institute, with a membership made up of JP Morgan, the US defense Department and Radio Free Europe, among others. It was founded by Legatum Limited, a private investment firm headquartered in Dubai which runs a fund to "help abolish modern-day slavery". (Nice touch.) They're libertarians, of course.
The UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, launched the Legatum Institute's "Prosperity for All" manifesto so they have influence.
Here's their promotion of a media event with Zhanna Nemtsova, daughter of murdered Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov. A quick review of their events and publications marks them out as Russian regime change agents.
And Legatum has a publishing deal with foreignpolicy.com. This is propaganda at its smooth, corporate best.
What do we make of the many good-willed, educated people in these groups who aren't neocons but who so gullibly subscribe to the cheap psychological caricatures of Putin as malevolent, and to the equally idiotic line that once he is deposed we will have sweetness and light? I'm reminded of that nut job Timothy Garton Ash.
I did a bit a bit more digging and I am blown away ...
Jeffrey Gedmin is a Senior Fellow, Georgetown University, and Senior Fellow, Institute for Strategic Dialogue. He was President and CEO of the Legatum Institute in London from 2011 to 2014 and the former President of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty from 2007 to 2011.
He is also listed as one of the Pollicy Council Members of the Henry Jackson Society.
And he is listed as a Forum Research Council Member at the National Endowment for Democracy.
He publishes regularly at the Atlantic Council -- especially on Ukraine regime change.
According to Rightweb -- "Gedmin was executive director of the right-leaning New Atlantic Initiative of the American Enterprise Institute. He is also a founder of Project for the New American Century, a major proponent of the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq."
And this is just too much...
"In a Nov. 20, 2006, article in the neoconservative magazine the Weekly Standard, Gedmin asks, 'Will George W. Bush ever get his due?' and writes that the president 'has forever changed the conversation about democracy and the Middle East to the benefit of humankind.'"
Here's a summary biography:
Jeffrey Gedmin is Co-Director of the Transatlantic Renewal Project at the World Affairs Institute and Journal in Washington, DC. He also serves as Chairman of the Global Politics and Security program at Georgetown University, and as Senior Advisor at Blue Star Strategies, LLC. Additionally, he is a Senior Fellow at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service Masters Program and a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Strategic Dialogue in London. From 2011 to 2014, Gedmin was President and CEO of the London-based Legatum Institute, where he was responsible for the Institute’s strategic direction, budget, board relations, fund raising, research, and programmatic agenda. Prior to joining the Legatum Institute, Gedmin served for four years as President and CEO of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. As RFE/RL President and CEO, Gedmin reported directly to the bi-partisan Broadcast Board of Governors, whose membership includes the U.S. Secretary of State. Before RFE/RL, Gedmin served as President and CEO of the Aspen Institute in Berlin. He was previously a Resident Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C and Executive Director of the New Atlantic Initiative.
He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the National Endowment for Democracy’s Research Council, the Board of Directors for the journal Turkish Policy Quarterly, and a member of the editorial board of the World Affairs Journal. In addition, he is a board member at the Institute for State Effectiveness and the Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship and Development, University of California. He has been an Honorary Professor at the University of Konstanz in Germany and currently serves on the board of the Masters Program of Georgetown University’s Foreign Service School.
In case people have missed it, Jeffrey Gedmin is an agent for regime change -- and Legatum is a polished Right wing think tank specifically designed to do so under the pretence of advancing free markets.