This post is not about the Madison Council per se, but does include a number of Madison Council members. As previously pointed out, the current Librarian of Congress, James Billington, is a former Princeton prof and CIA Sovietologist. As a one trick pony and one note Johnny, Billington just never leaves his comfort zone of all things Russian. This wouldn’t be a problem, except he runs the Library of Congress, which is the oldest federal American cultural institution; meaning this institution is not a Russian-American Foundation–or is it?
At the heart of the Russian Invasion, Billington arranged a symbiotic relationship between the two sleaziest Russian oligarchs, Vladimir Gusinski and Mikhail Khodorkofsky, and American businessmen and bankers. For the moment, I am going to leave aside the KGB and Russian Mafia connections these two crooks (literally, as the former is on the lam and the latter in prison). Billington, of all people, should have seen these connections. Although he insists that Library of Congress publications exclusively refer to him as “scholar” and “Dr.,” the “Dr.” title is rarely used when mentioning real visiting scholars and PhDs. The point I am making is that real scholars like Marshall Goldman, who specifically criticized the gift to Billington, and others recognize the threats these Russians pose to American business interests.
Khodorkovsky founded the Open Russia Foundation in 2001. On November 5, 2001, Khodorkovsky gave the Library of Congress a million dollars Center for the Russian Leadership Development program. Humbly taking the check, Billington had this to say:
“YUKOS Oil’s leadership gift will help realize goals I have pursued while serving as Librarian of Congress,” said Dr. Billington, who is a prominent scholar of Russian history and culture. “Congress has been very generous in its support of our effort to give Russia’s next generation of leaders a brief but intensive professional and personal experience of America. The gift from YUKOS Oil will further that support and is evidence of the program’s impact in Russia.”
See what I mean about the obligatory “prominent scholar” title? And just what are your “personal goals,” Billington? Using the Library of Congress to help friends make a boatload of money? Launder images of criminals by using the proud image of the Library of Congress to support your own vanity projects?
On September 18, 2002, the Open Russia Foundation launched in the US–at the Library of Congress, of course. This was another Washington event with over one hundred influential guests, from Congress, business, and the Madison Council. And here is one description:
“The gala evening opened with welcoming remarks from the host, Librarian of Congress Dr. James Billington, a long-time friend of Russia. Billington stressed the importance of Russia in world culture and the need for the country to be a full member of the world’s family of nations once again. Next to speak was World Bank President James Wolfensohn. He chided Billington for his modesty, saying that the Librarian, more than just about anybody else present, was personally responsible for so much that has happened in the recent past to bring Russia and the West closer together.”
Like I said in my first post, maybe this whole Russian-type American business oligarchy started in the fervid mind of Billington. Here are the five board members of the Open Russia Foundation: Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Henry Kissinger, Arthur Hartman, Mikhail Piotrovsky, and Lord Jacob Rothschild.
So here is one thing that pisses me off no end: where are the real investigative reporters regarding this event? All I can find are “court stenographers” scribbling fawning reports on this “gala” event. Nobody sees the looming disaster and how this will negatively affect US-Russian political relations. Although news organizations had reports on how sleazy American financiers like Marc Rich (see here, here, and here) helped to school these oligarchs, Congress and the Justice Department think this is all so great. We don’t even know who these other “hundred” guests are, even though there is a guest list somewhere. But we sure do know something about the five trustees. Kissinger is an indicted war criminal who has long been accused of being a KGB spy, Arthur Hartman is a former US Ambassador to Russia hired by APCO, a sleazy US company hired to clean up Khodorkovsky’s image (ergo this very event), Piotrovsky I’ll give a pass to as he is the Director of the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, and Jacob Rothschild is a British financier of the filthy rich Rothschild dynasty. Just before Khodorkovsky was arrested he quickly transferred his YUKOS oil shares to Rothschild, but Putin was not fooled by this.
And two last points about our failed journalists. Shortly after this misuse of the Library of Congress to launder the image of a Russian oligarch (including the Russian Mafia and KGB connections), the very first shipment of Russian oil arrived in TEXAS! And secondly, the indictment of Kissinger is directly tied to the Library of Congress. Kissinger tried to hide his government records as personal papers at the Library. A lawsuit–with the DoJ taking the side of the Library–finally opened the records, revealing Kissinger’s direct role in Chilean assassinations.