Tuesday, December 28, 2010

US Slams Azeri First Lady for Comestic Surgery

If Azerbaijan is so bad then why does the US government turn a blind eye and waste time travel to the US and a bit of cosmetic surgery?S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 03 BAKU 000054 SIPDIS COMMERCE FOR D.STARKS EEB/CBA FOR T.GILMAN DEPT PLEASE PASS TO USTR FOR C. MORROW AND P. BURKHEAD E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/27/2030 TAGS: ECON EINV EIND ETRD KCOR PINR PGOV AJSUBJECT: AZERBAIJAN: WHO OWNS WHAT? PART 1 - THE FIRST LADY'S FAMILY (C-RE9-02493; C-RE9-02492) REF: 08 BAKU 93 Classified By: XXXXXXXXXXXXX, for reasons 1.4 b and d. ¶1. (S) SUMMARY: This cable is the first in a series that will highlight the most powerful families in Azerbaijan, both in terms of economic and political power. In this opening issue, we profile the family of First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva (born Mehriban Pashayeva), and her uncle, former Azerbaijani Ambassador to the United States and current Deputy Foreign Minister Hafiz Pashayev. Mehriban Aliyeva, besides being the wife of the President, is a Member of Parliament and head of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, a non-transparent organization that bills itself as a vehicle for charitable works. Other members of the Pashayev family hold powerful positions in government and academia, and are associated with powerful business groups outside the energy sector. The Pashayevs are known to operate extensively in Baku's rapidly expanding construction/real estate market, and are well invested in the financial and telecommunications sectors. End Summary. ¶2. (C) Observers in Baku often note that today's Azerbaijan is run in a manner similar to the feudalism found in Europe during the Middle Ages: a handful of well-connected families control certain geographic areas, as well as certain sectors of the economy. By and large, this seems to be the case, with general agreement among leading families to divide the spoils and not disturb one another's areas of business or geographic control. The families also collude, using government mechanisms, to keep out foreign competitors, and entities such as the State Border Services, State Customs and tax authorities create barriers that only the best connected can clear. As a result, an economy already burgeoning with oil and gas revenues produces enormous opportunity and wealth for a small handful of players that form Azerbaijan's elite. This series of reports will describe the businesses they run, the regions they control, and the ministries they keep under their thumbs. ¶3. (U) Biographical note: Similar to Russian tradition, many Azeris still utilize the Slavic naming convention where the last letter(s) of a person's last name indicates gender. Example: Pashayev (male) / Pashayeva (female). Mehriban's Heydar Aliyev Fund ----------------------------- ¶4. (S) First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva (born Mehriban Pashayeva) is no doubt the most famous member of this clan, playing multiple roles and holding multiple titles. Aside from being the President's wife, she is President of the Heydar Aliyev Fund, which proclaims to be a humanitarian organization constructing schools, hospitals, and youth centers, among other projects. These projects provide a constant array of goodwill photo opportunities and advertisements for the First Lady, as she cuts ribbons on new schools and cultural centers. The Fund has its critics, however, who claim that it often fails to provide continued financing for the operation of these projects. Much funding seems to be geared towards efforts to explain Azerbaijan's side of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, for example in the form of books, brochures and other materials describing what they call a "genocide by Armenia" in the town of Khojali. ¶5. (S) Moreover, the organization tends to be non-transparent. It is unclear where the money for the Heydar Aliyev Fund's activities comes from, though many assume that oil revenues fill the coffers. There are multiple anecdotal reports of employees of government ministries being forced to make contributions to the Fund. The Fund is located in one of the largest historical buildings in downtown Baku, towering even over the SOCAR (State Oil Company) Headquarters. One opposition politician recently told poloff that receipts of donations to the Foundation are a type of "get out of jail free card" for local officials, meaning that if these officials can show that they donate regularly, higher level officials will allow them to operate businesses and other activities locally without interference. BAKU 00000054 002 OF 003 ¶6. (C) Aliyeva is also a Member of Parliament and Goodwill Ambassador for UNESCO and ISESCO (the Organization of the Islamic Conference cultural organization). A recent survey of journalists accredited to Parliament declared her "the Most Active MP of 2009 in making legislative initiatives." Embassy monitors, who have attended nearly every session over the past year, have never seen her present in Parliament, an institution that in general is not known for working independently outside the realm of the Presidential Apparat. When she received Members of Congress in 2008, she appeared poorly informed about political issues and could only respond knowledgeably about issues relating to the Heydar Aliyev Fund (reftel). Academics and Other Endeavors ----------------------------- ¶7. (S) Other notable Pashayevs include the First Lady's sister Nargiz Pashayeva, who heads the branch of Moscow State University located in Azerbaijan; the First Lady's father Arif Pashayev, who leads the National Aviation Academy; and the First Lady's uncle Hafiz Pashayev (brother of Arif Pashayev), who is a Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Director of the Azerbaijan Diplomatic Academy. Hafiz Pashayev was also Azerbaijan's first Ambassador to the United States, serving in Washington DC for over 13 years. The Deputy Foreign Minister these days spends much time focusing on his Diplomatic Academy, which is constructing an elaborate new compound (modeled after NFATC Arlington) in central Baku. As a whole, the family, which generally speaks Russian better than Azeri, is considered the single most powerful family in Azerbaijan. ¶8. (S) The Pashayev family's center of power is considered to be Baku, where Mehriban Aliyeva's parents were born, and the Absheron peninsula, with Aliyeva "representing" in parliament a constituency that surrounds Heydar Aliyev International Airport. Aliyeva has also arranged for the building of the Shuvelan designer shopping center in her constituency, which stands out among the crumbling houses in the area. The family is believed to exert control over the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the Ministry of Youth and Sport, the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Education, simply because these ministries fall under the areas traditionally of interest for a First Lady. In that regard, the Pashayevs have been active in promoting the construction of museums and other cultural sites in Baku, and at a time were associated with an effort to open a branch of the Guggenheim museum along Baku's waterfront. Mehriban Aliyeva's collection of contemporary art also provided the foundation for Baku's new Museum of Modern Art, which opened quietly last fall. The museum was designed by Altay Sadikhzade, a local artist/designer married to Nargiz Pashayeva. No expense was spared in the construction of the museum, which highlights Soviet-era Azerbaijani artists, including Altay (whose portraits of Mehriban, Nargiz and Arif are at the center of the galleries). A Vast Empire ------------- ¶9. (S) The Pashayev family controls Pasha Holding, a conglomerate that includes Pasha Bank, Pasha Insurance, Pasha Construction, and Pasha Travel. The family owns local TV station Lider TV as well as cosmetics producer "Nargiz." The family is believed to control several of the top ten banks in Azerbaijan, including Bank Standard and Kapital Bank, in addition to the newest, Pasha Bank. In November 2009, Pasha Holding opened Baku's first, and so far only, Bentley dealership. ¶10. (S) Nar Mobile (which is officially registered as Azerfon) is also linked to this family, and speculation is that the company is named "Nar" not only after the Azeri word for pomegranate but also after the First Lady's sister Nargiz. According to XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX, when President Aliyev visited the Azercell booth recently at the Baku telecom expo, he said, "So this is what the BAKU 00000054 003 OF 003 competition looks like." Nar Mobile/Azerfon has been growing rapidly and was recently awarded the only 3G license in Azerbaijan. Market leader Azercell had its license application denied for reasons that remain unclear. There have also been commercial disputes between Azercell and Nar Mobile/Azerfon. XXXXXXXXXXXX says that while Azercell always pays its interconnection fee responsibilities (for passing a call from one network to the other) to Nar Mobile/Azerfon, the latter does not reciprocate. In protest, Azercell blocked its subscribers (who form roughly 60 percent of the lucrative Baku market) from making calls to or receiving calls from Nar Mobile/Azerfon users (who make up 8 percent of the Baku market). Pashayev-controlled Nar Mobile/Azerfon went to court and not surprisingly received a verdict within hours that ordered Azercell to restore interconnectivity. ¶11. (S) Construction projects in Baku are generally beset by a number of government-imposed delays, such as the tax man, the fire marshal, and safety engineers battling for their own slices of the corruption pie. This is particularly true of smaller scale projects that do not have a "krysha" (Russian criminal slang for an official "roof," or protector), such as a government minister. Not surprisingly, projects by Pasha Construction face few, if any, of these setbacks and are generally among the fastest to be built in Azerbaijan. Examples include the Shuvelan Shopping Center, the Port Baku Towers and Residences, The Four Seasons Hotel, the Absheron J.W. Marriott Hotel and Residences, and the Amburan Marriott Beach Resort. Three workers were killed on January 11 when they fell from a building under construction on high-rent Neftchiler Prospect. Initial media reports said this was a Pasha Construction site; within hours, retractions appeared and said it was in fact a "Geygapi Construction" site. A First Lady, Too, in Fashion ----------------------------- ¶12. (S) The Pashayev women are known to be fashion-conscious and daring, far more so than the average woman in majority- Muslim Azerbaijan. First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva appears to have had substantial cosmetic surgery, presumably overseas, and wears dresses that would be considered provocative even in the Western world (reftel). On television, in photos, and in person, she appears unable to show a full range of facial expression. The First Lady and her two daughters hosted Second Lady Lynne Cheney for dinner in September 2008. Prior to the Second Lady's arrival, while the three ladies were waiting for Mrs. Cheney's car, one Secret Service agent asked "which one of those is the mother?" Emboffs and White House staff studied the three for several moments, and then Emboff said, "Well, logically the mother would probably stand in the middle." Comment: Pashayevs Worth Talking to ----------------------------------- By any measure, the Pashayevs are a family to be reckoned with in Azerbaijan. First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva has traveled to the United States on multiple occasions, with her husband and separately, and been the celebrated guest at events hosted by the U.S.-Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce and other organizations. XXXXXXXXXXXXXX has been an important interlocutor for the U.S. Embassy in Baku and official Americans traveling to Azerbaijan. He has not always been able to deliver outcomes that we promote -- such as on difficult issues like the jailed bloggers -- but has been wlling to hear us out and relay those messages appopriately. End Comment. ¶14. (C) The next report on "Who Owns What" will profile the Heydarov family. Patriarch Kemaladdin Heydarov is the Minister of Emergency Situations and the former Chairman of the State Customs Committee. A wealthy monopolist, he has been called "the most powerful man in Azerbaijan," although Post believes his family is actually second in power to that of the President and First Lady.


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Monday, December 27, 2010

US supports terrorism, fact or fiction? Pankisi Gorge

What proof do you have of the U.S. funding Chechen Fighters?

Unleash the dawgs!

Joni Simonishvili

As a reader wrote, "what proof do you have of the US funding Chechen fighters, this is what the American people need to know, if it can be written to their understanding, and if the word can get out to them.

What was the Chechnya war about?  Who was the good guy, who was the bad - Russia or Chechnya, and why?   Americans are confused about this and would not know who to 'root' for.  Then again, most could care less anyway since it's the other side of the world and whoever wins the war won't change their entertainment needs one way or another.... which is pretty much all they care about.

It is not what your right that is important but the timing, as that is the only thing that can make a real difference."

Response:

It takes a few volumes to cover what you ask but I will give it a go, you can google the Chechen war for the sake of brevity. My understanding of the story starts out with intentionally making the Pankisi Valley (gorge) of Georgia into a no-go area back in 2000-2001. This was a time when the gorge was surviving a base camp for Chechen fighters, little ever made it into the mainstream media as what was going on – as access was denied to foreign reporters, and the international media, including the Washington Post and others were eating up the official line – hook-line-and-sinker

To make a long story short, steps were taken to claim Pankisi was a lawless place, no-go zone and that Georgia needed help. The US State Department was engaged, such as Richard Boucher, a State Department Spokesperson, who came out in a daily press briefing discussing the Georgian border and the need to beef up the ability to control the situation.

The scars were still around my  around my wrists after being abducted and beaten several years ago, the price for going public with what I know about America's secret games in the strategically important Caucasus.  With a degree in the diplomacy he came here right after independence in 1991 to drive the tobacco exports, decided to stay there and soon became editor of an English language newspaper. He made good contact with the young generation of Georgians with education from the West who would later assume the leadership of the country, and used to have Mikhail Saakashvili over for dinner. This was before he became Minister of Justice  for President Eduard Shevardnadze. 

In some years because of close relations with power circuits in Tbilisi and with average people, I was able to gained insight into many of America's secret affairs. Even the International Crisis Group took notice of my work, and contracted me on a few occasions to carry out "due diligence" - to investigate a company or organization and find out if it is up to something it shouldn't have been. I have also been contacted to find out what has happened to some foreign citizens either killed or went missing in Georgia.

My trouble started when he wrote a report from Pankisi - a valley in northeast Georgia on the border with Chechnya, which was filled with thousands of refugees after the onset of the second Chechen war in 1999, and eventually became an important base for resistance against Russia, and the Russian even bomb the place several times.

It's since become clear that the Georgian authorities allowed the Chechens to use the Pankisi as base.  There is little doubt that the U.S. supported the rebels there, and that it later used the presence of mujaheddin there as justification to go in militarily, in so called mop up operations - but it was really a damage control operation after the terrible events of 9/11.

I first started suspecting when I went there in 2002. Everyone knew what was going on, and how money was there but no one could say for sure at the time where the money came from. Part of my work was to find out where the money came from, the money came from ACDI-VOCA, a rural credit association funded by the United States Department of Agriculture.

The money should have gone to investments in agriculture but it actually went right in the pocket of the Chechen rebel leaders along with representatives of Georgian intelligence services. One former CIA agent shared insight and assisted me in putting together the full story.  The same arrangement was used in Afghanistan with the Northern Alliance and with USAID funded alternative livelihood projects, also under the same NGO, ACDI/VOCA and with some of the same staff that had worked in Georgia.

The Chechens were helped by visiting mujaheddin from the Middle East, and I am convinced that the United States brought them in, even provided them with fake Georgian passports for traveling to Turkey and elsewhere. One Chechen leader was even flying to the UK on a regular basis, and this was the most wanted Chechen fighter by Russian Special Services.

I met a group of Saudis, who had false passports and said they had 300 USD days to take travel by Pankisi and fight against the Russians. The the group of three all had newly issued Georgian passports.

Officially there were only refugees in Pankisi, but after the terrorist attacks 11 September 2001  the U.S. changed its strategy and defined it as a base for Al-Qaida.

One of the consequences was that President Bush could more easily get Congressional approval to go in militarily in Georgia, a strategically important country after it was chosen as the routes for oil and gas pipelines from Azerbaijan to Turkey, and this was done under the cover of the 64 million dollar train and equip program.

Already in early 2002 American military sent advisers to train Georgians to clean up the Pankisi gorge.  Now the opportunity was presented for  the U.S. to enter its trainers, something Russia protested strongly against. By the end of 2002, Georgian president Shevardnadze had declared the place cleared of terrorists.

It was the middle of this operation that Silverman visited the area, and working with a British freelance journalist named Roddy Scott, who told him that he had compromising material that would really lift the lid on what was happening in Pankisi.

Right after, Scott joined a Chechen unit of soldiers on their raids over the mountains to Ingushetia and was killed by Russian soldiers in an ambush. Three days after his death, I was stopped by security police in Azerbaijan and beaten up. There is no doubt in my mind that is there is a connection, and especially when the US Embassy in Baku refused to provide assistance to me in the hospital.

What has been written to support the pattern and proof of US funding Chechens is found in Georgian Credit Unions set up by ACDI/VOCA under a US food for Peace Program where US Agriculture Commodities are sold to provide funding for rural credit unions, and these credit unions were to make loans to worthwhile agriculture projects. These were looted and the proceeds used to support the Chechen fighters.

Much of the actionable intelligence at the time was provided to Roddy Scott by an American Freelance journalist living in Georgia, and that email likely got him killed. Before he set out for Georgia he had written me these words, "I personally think it is a great story, it's about the first time I have ever seen the possibility for someone to really lift the lid on everything, rather than the usual journo-grasping-at-straws-with-no-good-sources which seems to emanate from the region. And what really gives it the boost is that it is tied into US policy, which gives it the international rather than local/parochial flavor."

Roddy's correspondence was in response to having reviewed an unedited draft of an article, which was later published on Eurasianet (Internet site), which addressed regional geopolitical events and the larger repercussions of breaking news related to the war in Chechnya. Time is passing but there are still many questions left unanswered as to the unofficial political, economic and security networks in the region. It is especially interesting how events are portrayed in the United States and the Russian Federation in terms of the war on international "terrorism" and how a small enclave has such far-reaching geopolitical implications. There was also a nexus with Chechen fighters in the valleys (Kodori and Pankisi) and unofficial Georgian links to larger operational and financial support in Turkey, Azerbaijan and the Middle East.

Fast Forward, Afghanistan

http://www2.acdivoca.org/acdivoca/PortalHub.nsf/ID/afghanistanARIES

After leaving here the person on the point for funding Pankisi, Rusty Shultz, was in soon in charge of another rural credit program, ended up working in Afghanistan with the same kind of mechanism. I am sure you will understand that he is just a small fish in all of this, and the real corruption goes to the top in USAID and other international organizations. Rusty was subsequently fired in Afghaistan for again allowing things to get out of control and for others having learned that the ARIES project was a model of the Georgian operations.

Here is the basic scheme of things: However, these are old notes and it would take a PhD to describe how all these programs have since development and transformed. Jeffrey Silverman wrote in one of his emails to a trusted source, "I collected this together, and it will be time before I can neatly package things in micro units to get you started. My main source is out of Kabul for the time being and it is hard to network from a distance.

Based on what I know, it might be best to start out with this person,  as who is center-stage to the investment fund (ARF), [different than ACDI/VOCA, check out Kavkhaz Center about two years back], my NGO article;  in the meantime I am still networking for specific NGO corruption stuff to get a good start with. However, I think this person can give you the oversight on things and I am networking with my media friends who are gunning for a good US government corruption scandal and cover-up.

The Russian Embassy might share the history of Pankisi and its nexus to terrorism – provided you tell them you are interested in Imram Akhmadov and what brothers may still be alive, that as it relates to the history of leakage of ACDI/VOCA funds via rural credit unions (there were or 8 brothers in total and open sources claim they were practically all eliminated. However, it is highly suspect in the intelligence community that some are still alive and living out of the country on fake passports, and these passports were provided by Georgian intelligence around 2001, and paid for with USG money.

Another question to ask is: "Who is this Randall Spears, ex-special services, (he was here in Georgia with Rusty Shultz), It appears that this [mechanism] the same thing that was going on in Georgia with some New Zealander (as noted in), and he was part of Rusty virtual world.

 Tamara Tiffany is another colorful person who can give you lots of information on Gerry Anderson, USAID Economic Development, and who was involved with the dirty mechanisms, not only involving Pankisi but regional plays, and Rusty Shultz.  Tamara has a rather sorted history in the case files of USAID OIG and most likely DEA too – as her first husband is alleged to have been involved in international drug trade out of South America.

Leon Waskins, USAID Mission Director, and get with her to find out who is who and what is going on with ARF, Pierre Van Hoeylandt, ARIES, AED

Next research ACDI/VOCA

Especially in terms of management turnover, how they have been near bankruptcy many times, and dive into the history or their projects (Georgia, Azerbaijan and what is going on in Afghanistan). I have also been trying to get all the contacts and it takes time.

As I wrote some years ago to a friend from the Patterson School, University of Kentucky: "Can you help me with a mailing list of key contacts to send information?" My friend who was with NSA and now head of a political science program suggested that:

I can contact the democrats directly and not waste my time. See quotes below: USAID is appears to be investigating the information that my sources provided but time will tell. Anyway, I sent this across: "Will be sending some stuff to the incoming Democratic chair of some relevant subcommittee (government operations committee, foreign relations, even appropriations).  The Administration won't care, but the Dems might."

There is no need to discuss anything until you have spoken to your own people in USAID/OIG – and networked with Embassies in the mentioned countries. A few emails and phone calls will bring you up to speed. Those involved in the ACDI/VOCA corruption think that they have a get out of jail card.

Bad Chechens 

Finally, check out who is Zura Otiashvili, connected with Georgian intelligence and Pankisi, and with Russian Embassy, as who were the Akhadadov Brothers (and you will find connections to the rural credit unions). One of the persons that were involved in the weapons for drug swaps, Imram Akhmadov (and in now in Turkey under a fake passport purchased with US government money (the family name on the false Georgian passport is Kavtarashvili).

This information comes directly from Chechens and Kist living in Pankisi, including two of his ex-wives (one working for a NGO in Pankisi and later as a refugee in Norway, and the other living with her brother who spent time in Afghanistan (was a translator for Northern Alliance).

About five years back he was working for Georgian intelligence but if some kind of deal could be made to help him out of Georgia then you would have a very good source of information as to the connections between these various countries and routes, especially with the ACDI/VOCA funding mechanism.

However, this is playing with a very hot fire.

Bigger Projects in Afghanistan to look at:

As a question asked about ARIES information [responding to my request]: "The project is $80 million to do both microfinance and SME lending in certain areas where USAID is trying to get people to shift away from opium cultivation (another project, the Alternative Livelihood project, is working there). So, it includes a North area near Tajik border, an area east of Kabul centered around the city of Jalalabad, the southern war region of Kandahar and Helmand, and the area around the city of Herat.

There are four main subcontractors doing the work as follows:

               1) FINCA is getting a $10 million grant to do microfinance.

               2) WOCCU gets about $15 million grant to make about 20 credit unions.

               The ex-Green Beret Special ops type Randall Spears heads up this operation,

               (and this should be the target for your corruption investigation)

               3) ACDIVOCA is getting something like $12 million grant to set up its usual credit cooperatives, headed by Rusty Shultz in [cohorts with Gerry Anderson].

4) About $30 million goes to an apex organization called MISFA. $15 million is to make SME loans through banks, and ShoreBank manages that as advisors to MISFA. The other $15 is for micro finance loans.

5) The rest is for administration.

The prime contractor, overseeing all the subcontractors is AED, which has no institutional expertise in rural credit (that is a can of worms to be opened as well). My deep throat at the time had excellent relations to the project leadership, so he will let you know once things start happening. But for now, Rusty Shultz is getting OK marks, lying low, making friends, nothing unusual has happened. His close buddy Gerry Anderson, USAID, looks more and more taking oversight of the ARIES project (which by the way is pretty much the biggest project in town). It appears that Gerry has taken a big fall, because he is now only deputy department head, whereas in Georgia he was department head.

As he wrote me many years ago, "Yeah, that Leon Waskins was the Mission Director.  Yeah, keeping digging on ARF, that is a very interesting story and you will better understand what went on in Pankisi and ACDI/VOCA.  

Ok, take care,

Unleash the dawgs!


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Saturday, December 25, 2010

More allegations about corruption in USAID, ACDI/VOCA Azerbaijan

Dear Trusted Source,

I have been investigating ACDI/VOCA for more than 10 years. I need documents and not more allegations, and that is the request that I am writing and sharing with various sources in Azerbaijan and the United States.

I need to know what you know about the connection with Azerbaijan and top people in USAID and the US Embassy, and just why are they protecting the locals in Azerbaijan - what are their real motives.  

My very best,

Jeffrey K. Silverman

Here is what I am sharing with a larger audience.

"I am in the middle of a new fire fight, and this all about material support from the "American People" for state sponsored terrorism, and even in the most recent case - funding certain Azeri government officials."

http://joninews.wordpress.com/2010/12/25/norwegian-and-us-credit-scandals-lar... />
I need to increase the reading audience to keep something really bad from happening to me. Having my US nationality and passport revoked is small potatoes to what they can do to me for digging into the wholesale mechanism for the material support of international terrorism.

The person that I think should be called before a grand jury is Patrick R. Wingate. He refuses to assist me in obtaining medical records or take a statement when I was kidnapped off the street tied with ropes with tar, and he saw nothing when I showed him the rope burns on my arms.

I am onto something big - and I just received this:

"I would like share with you regarding to one feedback from  22 November, 2010 to  your article about the ACDI/VOCA funded micro-finance institution as "CredAgro".  By the reading feedback at first impressions I could not find any extraordinaire in this  response. However, late this  feedback  dawned me for one issue. Having being  familiar with skills of  CEO of "CredAgro"  -  I suppose that it could be that,  this feedback was organized by the CEO  himself in order to make confusion among  the readers  and draw your  attention  away from raised issue  from CredAgro  and turn to other area,  along with an effort and attempt  for blackmail by the  sentence as:

"Please be warned of what you are dealing with." Of course, there  are also other MicroFinance Institutions in same and other other countries with  problems.  However, first of all needs to think about the motivation of the "writer". 

In our example what is the motivation of writer who tried draw you attention to  other MFI? . Suppose you  can find answer yourself .    Having been provide sufficient money and opportunities, CredAgro, and its CEO could  hire some "writers"  to make confusion and draw your  attention, and make a pressure by blackmail as mentioned above. I think there is reason to consider this,  and you should be prepared to meet surprises by the actors, and by  their  talented producer."

Second email on same day and from same source, same day, December 25, 2010

Please keep below mentioned information confidential for both yours and my security, they are willing to kill to protect themselves, to block the investigative process, as huge money is being collected in the hands of a very few people.

You need to access detailed  documents, which may be enough to submit as evidence.  Just start looking at the range of players, former employees who have been fired or force to resign over the years, what were their real motivations. It is also interesting to consider their efforts in trying to find out why they were fired from the top management in ACDI/VOCA, (the founder), and to be reinstated to their former positions.

In most cases they were pressured to resign and not be fired, and in case they would not give in to the pressure,  evidence would be fabricated.  

Many former employees made sincere efforts to warn USAID and other responsible authorities of what was going on - regardless, this was to no avail. I can tell you that such warning signal were given more than two years back, and what was predicated has come true.

It is the founder, ACDI/VOCA that bears most of the responsibility for what is now happening (for what all has transpired). It is no wonder that the reputation of the US government and ACDI/VOCA has suffered as a consequence, it has "negatively impacted ACDI/VOCA's image and reputation."

In addition, quoting "And one of  more serious issue is that one of former member of Supervisory Board involved illegal processes, receiving  kickbacks for this, and still they continued receive benefits in keeping up such violations. You should be warned  in terms of confidentiality, and because the  head of the IT department, has managed to spy on all information, and on those persons who may have information that may be damaging to the private interests of the CEO.

I would suggest that you make all effort to obtain substantial information in way of documentation as evidence, which will speak much louder than words."

Very interesting, I must change my hobbies in investigating corruption in US government sponsored programs.

Jeffrey K. Silverman


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Norwegian and US Credit Scandals Larger than Expected in Azerbaijan

"Everyone looks bad, so everyone looks the other way.'

RE: Based on documents received December 25, 2010

Corruption in ACDI/VOCA programs,  Azerbaijan and Georgia

Dear Norwegian Embassy, USAID:

RE:  Normicro's vision is to be a sustainable and leading organization in alleviating poverty through providing broad access to credit in Azerbaijan. Normicro promotes viable enterprises for internally displaced and low-income Azerbaijanis by providing sustainable lending services.

URGENT REQUEST:

I think we need to compare some notes as there is "organized looting" of credit associations in Azerbaijan. It also seems that several Norwegian banks have also been involved, and some suspect that this corruption was a joint venture with locals (and there was some kind of inside collaboration with foreign representatives).

As shared with investigators, US, Norwegian government and the US State Department.  A package of document was shared with Jeffrey K. Silverman, December 25, 2010.

Nb. Jeffrey is the former editor in chief of Azerbaijan Today and Georgian Times, and who now resides in Georgia.

The letter is part of the package of documents which outlines allegations of corruption, as addressed to USAID, United States Agency for International Development, Office of Inspector General.  However, no date was on this letter but it appears to be very recent.

Key elements – and allegations are as follows:

You are being approached by a group of former employees of CreditAgro, a NGO based Credit Organization set up under a US government funded grant … and notwithstanding the [apparent] indifference of the organization that set up this association, ACDI/VOCA, which we have applied to several times in written form, no measures have been taken in response. Now you can take the facts listed below into consideration and provide assistance to CredAgro and its former employees (a total of 6 were listed at the end of the correspondence, and their many years of service to the association).

Screaming Foul or NOT?

These contentions and allegations go beyond what appears to be a group of disgruntled former employees screaming foul:

"Everybody is fully aware that Credit Agro was set up with funding provided by the US taxpayer, [in USAID doublespeak, the American People]. Hence we request that the various organizations that we have applied to assist in bringing about justice with fairness, both for CredAgro and its employees."

Claims made:
1)    Falsification of reports (ones addressed to the incorporator, investors, AMFA and the Central Bank of Azerbaijan).
2)    International exposure of credit risks on a massive scale, and their removal (writing off) from the balance and the [subsequent] misappropriation of such credits, a list of provided of the amounts involved and the years involved. Moreover, the main culprit-perpetrator is listed as J. Jafavrov, the head of the network of credit unions.
3)    Description of how big rigging and amounts for land purchases were exaggerated, jacked up for the "cash purchase of land plots for the construction of branch offices, and even how one construction company may have had unfair advantage in the process
4)    "Transferring of 6 to 7 branch buildings to a single construction company as an entity, which participated in rigged tenders for the construction of branch offices." NB. Special notice in the correspondence is made of how this person, who was the president of the construction company, hanged himself, or at least that is what it may be officially claimed in the police report.
5)    More mundane, "agreements/contacts for various things were concluded outside the tender process. Moreover, other mechanisms were used to misappropriate funding and many organizations were involved "tenders" in the sphere of Information Technologies;
6)    Furthermore, it is alleged that that the actual costs of repairs and construction was at least doubled, and examples given:
7)    Two hundred and eighty thousand USD allocated for the construction of an administrative building in Guba, a branch office for that city, and how this amount was fully prepaid. Another example is the cost for the purchase of the administrative building for the Khachmaz branch, and exact amounts provided. In total, 242,000 AZN, 320, 000 AZN for the building and 100,000 for the land plot.  The former employees claim that this is an unheard of amount in the history of Khachmaz.
8)    Eldar Jafar, director, established several micro credit organizations [keeping it in the family] directly on his mother's name with the mother that he had misappropriated (for example, "Invest Credit" and BOKT).
9)    Not in keeping with acting legislation, transport facilities were [confiscated, foreclosed] … taken back from clients and then sold illegally at bargain prices "too cheaply" to others for what is referred to as "front money."
10)    Moreover, and perhaps some of the most serious of charges made by this group of former employees: " E. Jafarov, used a "pyramid" scheme in order to artificially decrease credit risks and used a variety of tricky schemes to cover such activities.  Also, human resources, at least those on the books were used as a way to siphon off money, and payments were diverted to cover debts and these were not done in accordance with normal operating procedures.  Specifics are given and these are not provided here as so not to hinder any possible investigation, so not to give the opportunity to cook the books in light a criminal investigation.
11)    It is also charged that there is a great disparity between the salaries, as for those on administrative boards and regular employees, which indicates a possible kickback scheme with salaries.
12)    The diversity of employees is also worth mentioning:  each and every month. 8,000 (eight-thousand) was paid to one Vusal Eynullayev, acting in the capacity of the supervisory board, vice director and current employed as consultant to CredAgro.  Nobody, at least those who shared this information, understand what this person actually does and why he is being paid for doing nothing.  As the commentary provides. "it is a riddle for all of us, paying a person who does not assist the organization … and we note another case in regard to this person, [more about how Eldar Jafarov uses people in realizing his 'dirty purposes' and how loans are made with 12 percent APR, and how can you provide loans to a person working as a consultant, and this is [but the tip of the iceberg] – and the same person is working on the books as an assistant accountant to the Abseheron Brach, and the highest salary is paid, even higher than what is paid to others.  Moreover, it is claim that these benefits are attributed to having "rightly" supported the director when he was a member of the supervisory board.
13)    Perhaps the most central theme to various chain of correspondence, including this most recent one, is that of how employees are fired from their jobs under various excuses and with penalties and keep from being able to freely get on with their lives. They are blacklisted and prevented from finding other suitable employment.
14)    Much is written between the lines of the listed recriminations and criminal charges, and the central theme is how the director acts unprofessionally and not in accordance with local or higher permitted authority, especially in terms of dealing with the head office, and these things are discussed among those working in the organization as common knowledge – and one question is how best to make the responsible management aware of what is going on?
15)    It is in the opinion of those that shared this letter, that those working for E. Jafarov, and based on this "cadre policy" are in their positions illegally, and they are those closest to him. Even the qualification of employees is highly suspect, and for instance, AzruAsqerov who acts as the director of the Absheron branch was given a position and his diploma was a fake.  Employees state that one only needs to look at his pay stubs to fully understand.  Moreover, you briefly determine how this person without any experience is paid such a high salary. Another example is given how a person with only a high school diploma is appointed as a top employee in one branch.
16)    Other more local and administrative rules are listed among the complaints.  That the labor books of some of the terminated employees are not being returned to their rightful owners and outstanding legal payment of their wages not being paid out, as in the case of (ex-directors of Lankaran and Zagatala branches).
17)    All and all, and the bottom line: using such a combination of schemes and circumventing the law, the network of the director of the credit association has increased his personal wealth by millions of dollars, which was looted from not only those that provided grants and seed money for the association. How the money is spent is rather specific with details.
•    All these properties are registered under the mother's name (for instance) … 4 to 5 Mercedes with license number 10 AA 315, two flats in a new building with more than 300 square meters each, and located in the Yasamal district,  also under the mother's name – and these examples is just  a partial listing of what the employees are aware of.
•    Much more can be listed and discussed but for the sake of brevity, not in the form of this letter, as to the falsification/fraud committed by E. Jafarov, and we have the facts to support such claims. All that is needed is the opportunity to meet with the persons that this letter and early statements and documentation has been provided, and we believe that we will be in the position to present such facts.
•    As the letter concludes, "Dear Persons, which we apply to, we beg you to consider the above-mentioned circumstances and help the organization carryout a full-fledged "strong" audit … and if this unbridled "out-of-control" person is not soon brought under control, he will continue to pervert the lives of many individuals."

Sincerely,

A list of six employees with many years of professional experience,

Listed and years of experience actually provided:

Commentary and History:

In the meantime, I am providing some information that may be useful for your investigators, as I suspect the same mechanism and players are involved as with Normico, especially on higher levels, as to what has gone before with US Government money. It is highly suspected that all efforts to reform the rural and micro credit sector on the policy level have been stonewalled at the higher levels of government.

This may be our smoking gun. I  have been investigating this for some years, dating back to 1991, when ACDI/VOCA, a US funded development organization appears to have covertly used funneled financial support to support Chechen and foreign fighters holed up in the Pankisi Valley of Georgia. Similar mechanisms have been used for years in Azerbaijan, as with MEGA oil and Taliban fighters. It is interesting how the same players (aid workers) and funding mechanisms have been used in other parts of the world, including Georgia and Afghanistan.

Most recently, aside from the squandering of about six million from one USG program, I have heard from several confidential sources that at least 10 million of Norwegian funds have been siphoned off in another credit scheme. Moreover, the corruption may reach to official levels of the Azeri government, and out of expediency, perhaps because of Statoil, a "blind eye" is being turned by the Norwegian government.

Please find some related information as how such mechanisms work, as reported to USAID OIG, Office of the Inspector General, and Criminal Investigative Wing of United States Agency for International Development.

Credit Agri, the same organization, on the American side has been implicated in providing material support to Chechen terrorists, and has been involved in high level corruption in Azerbaijan, and this too was never investigated by USAID and other USG organizations.

To make a long story short, there also appears to be a massive cover up in process, and not only involving the USG but other providers of funding for what would have been otherwise worthwhile credit activities - and EU  countries are also involved, and even money provided by IFC, the financial arm of the World Bank.

I am willing to set up meetings with those involved, who can provide insight and actionable intelligence as to these schemes. I think this can lead to criminal convictions and the cleaning up of the rural credit sector in Azerbaijan.

I will be looking forward to hearing from you as soon as possible. Incidentally, Roddy Scott, a British Journalist and I were investigating funding mechanisms via Azerbaijan some years back, he ended up dead, and coincidence or not, a few days later I was beaten and ended up with a brain concussion in Baku.

I was chasing the money via Azerbaijan that was being used to support Chechen fighters in Georgia, and learning the routes that Chechens were using to carry out operations against the RF, and how the Georgian government was a state-sponsor of terrorism, providing them weapons and transport - and the bulk of the funding came from the US government during the period of former president Eduard Shevardnadze. This process was in close connection with a group of Afghan War Veterans, Javi - a NGO set up by the Georgian National Security Council in order to help justify the 64 million dollars US train and equip program and to carry out a war of destabilization in various regions of the Russian Federation.


History of ACDI/VOCA in Azerbaijan

ACDI started a rural credit SME program funded by USAID about 2001 in Azerbaijan. It was the largest of the USAID funded credit projects. About $4 million was in loans. They made loans to rural enterprises, farmers, etc. They had offices in most areas of the country (Lenkoran, Imishli, Ganja, etc.) ACDI/VOCA, an international development organization dedicated to empowering people worldwide, and it has had its problems in a number of countries.

The ACDI system in Azerbaijan was established to provide local control and a local company was set up to run all the local offices. The company was called CreditAgro This system was unlike that in Georgia, where credit associations were formed. This was more centralized, with offices reporting to a central office in Baku. However, the same propensity to hand the operation over to corrupt locals was observed. In this case, ACDI/VOCA hired a man called Eldar Jafarov, initially as credit officer, but he eventually became head of CreditAgro. Soon problems developed between Eldar and the ACDI/VOCA Chief of Party and other expatriates, who considered that Eldar was taking too much power and hiring cronies for every position in CreditAgro. Despite numerous attempts by ACDI/VOCA expatriate staff to remove Eldar Jafarov these attempts were consistently blocked by ACDIVOCA Washington. An internal audit proved many allegations against Eldar.
Still, ACDI/VOCA refused to fire Eldar or change human resource personnel practices. In 2005, however, enough was enough and ACDI decided to fire Eldar. Then Eldar told all managers of Creditagro to go on strike in his support. As a result, ACDI/VOCA Washington completely caved in (ACDI's VP Dennis DeSantis), and gave the position back to Eldar. The fallout was immediate and the ACDI/VOCA Country Director resigned in disgust, [check out this source] and Eldar, now much more powerful, personally fired the other principal expatriate himself, cleaning up loose ends. The impression was that Creditagro was now a private enterprise of Eldar.

The United States Agency for International Development, USAID was well aware of this scandal but decided to turn a blind eye, and often sided with Eldar in subsequent criticism of ACDI/VOCA. However, they still made a grant of the USAID funds (about $4 million) to ACDI/VOCA/Credit Agro. ACDI continues to be the owner of CreditAgro, yet it forced into a curious position where they are telling all potential investors and lenders to stay clear of CreditAgro because of the above-mentioned shenanigans, and not to taint their reputation more than it is already.

It was obvious that ACDI/VOCA had really mishandled the project, setting up a private company serving one individual. Still, even though USAID was for a very long time aware of the problems, never penalized ACDI/VOCA, but instead, in 2005, rewarded ACDI/VOCA with a major rural enterprise development project in Azerbaijan, which is now employing the old second in command fired by Eldar.

Sordid track Record, Georgia

This is not the first incidence of ACDI/VOCA incompetence in running credit projects. The Georgia ACDI rural credit project was a well-known complete disaster, as local credit associations created by ADCI and funded fully by USAID and USDA were taken over by the local managers selected by ACDI/VOCA and turned into a private money making racket with accountability to none. A later USAID project to assist these entities found out later that the managers had illegally fleeced the associations of most of their funds. Most of the funds disappeared as "dividends" to the local project managers, who normally had been selected due to their power within the local community (for example, some of them were heads of the local tax inspectorate and well known bandits, including members of state security, and not because of any credit or relevant knowledge.

Professional skills are not the decisive factor. The result is that senior local bureaucrats, politicians, and businessmen gain positions. This was part of the problem with the credit unions set up by ACDI/VOCA in 1993 and funded by the US government.

ACDI/VOCA hired these people ostensibly because their muscle could be used to guarantee repayment from poorer farmers. Even as far back as 1998 the then Georgian Agriculture Deputy Minister Nugzar Duchidze had remarked that ACDI/VOCA's setup was a "rich farmer's club designed to help these well connected individuals. The Georgia operation was obviously even worse than the Azerbaijan setup. Still, USAID encouraged the Azerbaijan operation was to be patterned after Georgia by the USAID program officers who controlled aid programs in both countries. However, now it appears that Azerbaijan has exceeded all levels of fraud and corruption that was demonstrated by the Georgian project.

One International TV network producer wrote an email dealing with accountability in international organizations 'Ahh – there is the problem. Nobody is interested in corruption. Western agencies would be very embarrassed to be seen dealing with a bunch of second-rate crooks. After all, you must remember that it looks bad if your program which is funded by the US or Europe has no correct oversight. "
"Everyone looks bad, so everyone looks the other way.'

The "total" lack of accountability NGOs (including a host of international organizations) continues when receiving grants and cooperative agreements from international organizations. These NGOs can do what they want, and are "assumed" to be doing well, because they are "fellow travelers" with USAID.

They all claim to be helping in improving the livelihood of local farmers, small business, etc.

Best regards,

Joni Simonshvili, Jeffrey K. Silverman, Tbilisi Georgia 


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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Georgia Responsible for 2008 Attack on South Ossetia

WikiLeaks exposes US cover-up of Georgian attack on South Ossetia

By Niall Green
6 December 2010

Leaked State Department documents provide further evidence that United States authorities knew that the ex-Soviet republic of Georgia, a key ally of Washington in the Caucasus region, initiated the August 2008 war with Russia.

Cables from US diplomats in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, were released through the whistleblower website WikiLeaks. They show that Washington was well aware that the Georgian government was intensifying its military build-up near the breakaway province of South Ossetia in the weeks before the outbreak of full-scale hostilities.

South Ossetia has refused to acknowledge Tbilisi's authority since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, and Russian peacekeepers have been stationed in the province since then.

Prior to the attack on South Ossetia by Georgian forces, a cease-fire was in place between Tbilisi and South Ossetian separatist militants.

The diplomatic reports from the American embassy record that the US was aware that Georgia's armed forces were "deploying troops to positions in Georgian territory to the south of the Zone of Conflict [the disputed boundary between Georgia proper and the secessionist territory]" and that Tbilisi's forces were operating on "a heightened state of readiness in order to show their resolve."

A cable records that US embassy observers witnessed 30 government buses "carrying uniformed men heading north" towards South Ossetia the day of the Georgian attack.

The Georgian assault on South Ossetia, launched August 7, involved the shelling of the main city of Tskhinvali followed by a ground invasion by 1,500 troops. The operation destroyed hundreds of civilian properties and claimed the lives of an estimated 160 South Ossetians and 48 Russian military personnel.

Despite this knowledge of Georgian military preparations, once the war began, US ambassador John Tefft simply relayed the claims of Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili that Russia was the aggressor.

The New York Times, which has received the State Department documents so far released by WikiLeaks, commented on Wednesday that these reports by the US embassy in Tbilisi were not based on any field intelligence but rather solely relied on information from sources within the Georgian government.

"The cable contained no evidence that the Ossetian attacks after the cease-fire had actually occurred and played down the only independent account, which came from military observers in Tskhinvali from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe," the Times reported.

In a subsequent statement to an international inquiry into the conflict, former British army officer Ryan Grist, the senior OSCE representative in Georgia when the war broke out, said that the Georgian attack was "completely indiscriminate and disproportionate to any, if indeed there had been any, provocation" by the South Ossetians.

Aware that the August 7 attack on South Ossetia, with its Russian garrison, would trigger a major conflagration, Tefft counseled Georgia's foreign and defense ministers "to remain calm, not overreact, and to de-escalate the situation," the documents on WikiLeaks record.

The extent to which Washington was forewarned or even complicit in the attack on South Ossetia ordered by Saakashvili remains unknown, though WikiLeaks has only issued a fraction of the State Department documents in its possession. A Russian magazine has claimed it has information indicating that many of the leaked US State Department files still to be released relate to the 2008 Russia-Georgia war.

The Georgian government enjoyed very close ties to Washington leading up to the 2008 war. Saakashvili came to power on the back of the so-called "Rose Revolution" in 2003, a US-backed coup that ousted Georgia's long-time president Eduard Sheverdnadze and ushered in a staunchly pro-Washington and pro-NATO regime in Tbilisi.

Under Saakashvili, Georgia received billions of dollars in US military and civilian aid, and American armed forces were heavily engaged in training their Georgian counterparts as a prelude to proposed membership of NATO for the ex-Soviet state.

When Moscow reacted to the attack on its forces in South Ossetia with an overwhelming armed response on August 9, Washington swung into full propaganda mode in an effort to portray Russia as the aggressor and Georgia as an innocent victim.

Another cable from the US embassy in Tbilisi, sent shortly after the Russian counterattack, reported, "President Saakashvili told the Ambassador in a late morning phone call that the Russians are out to take over Georgia and install a new regime." The report, again, provided no independent verification of this claim.

Based solely on accounts from the Georgian side, the US embassy cabled back to Washington a series of reports describing "bombed hospitals," Russians "shooting local Georgians and raping women/girls," Moscow's helicopters "dropping flares on the Borjomi national forest to start fires," and Russian troops targeting "civilians in Gori."

The only acknowledgment by the embassy of the unreliability of their Georgian sources came in a cable, issued days after the war broke out, stating, "It is increasingly difficult to get an accurate analysis of the military situation because of the fog of war and the fact that the Georgian command and control system has broken down."

Documents allegedly given to the magazine Russian Reporter by a WikiLeaks volunteer may provide further evidence that there was a deliberate policy of deception coming from the US embassy. According to the Moscow-based weekly, a cable from Ambassador Tefft to the State Department after the war broke out insisted that a coordinated position should be prepared to respond to those unsure of "Georgia's absolute innocence."

The pro-Saakashvili position of Ambassador Tefft was of a piece with the stance adopted by the Bush administration. Following Russia's August 9 counterattack, then Vice President Richard Cheney warned that, "Russian aggression must not go unanswered," adding that Moscow's actions would have "serious consequences" for relations with the United States.

A few days later a US Navy detachment sailed for the Black Sea coast of Georgia in a clear effort to deter the Kremlin from capturing Tbilisi and toppling Washington's placeman, Saakashvili.

Chiming in, then-Senator Barrack Obama, campaigning for the presidency, denounced Russian "aggression" and parroted the claims of the Bush administration that Georgia had only acted in self-defense.

The US press corps and the television news outlets quickly adopted the official line, denouncing the Russian invasion of Georgia while studiously ignoring claims of Tbilisi's initiation of the conflict.

This unified position on the war, flowing from the Saakashvili regime, through the US embassy in Tbilisi to Washington, stands in stark contrast to the one thousand pages of evidence amassed by the European Union's Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on the Conflict in Georgia.

That investigation, headed by Swiss diplomat Heidi Tagliavini, issued its report in September 2009–-to near complete silence from the US government and its media allies. It stated that "None of the explanations given by the Georgian authorities in order to provide some form of legal justification for the attack" were valid.

"In particular, there was no massive Russian military invasion under way, which had to be stopped by Georgian military forces," Tagliavini confirmed.

"The shelling of Tskhinvali by the Georgian armed forces during the night of 7 to 8 August 2008 marked the beginning of the large-scale armed conflict in Georgia," the EU report stated.

"There is the question of whether the force by Georgia during the night of 7/8 August was justifiable under international law. It was not … it is not possible to accept that the shelling of Tskhinvali with Grad multiple rocket launchers and heavy artillery would satisfy the requirements of having been necessary and proportionate," the investigators found.

The further release by WikiLeaks of many more State Department cables on the US role in the Russia-Georgia War can only confirm the dishonest and conspiratorial character of Washington's role in that conflict. This, and the other crimes of US imperialism recorded by its diplomats, is why the Obama administration is so determined to silence the whistleblower website.


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Friday, December 17, 2010

ACDI/VOCA USAID Corruption in Azerbaijan Rural Credit Programs

Loan officer was a colonel, but unfortunately BLACK.


ACDI/Corruption in Azerbaijan

 

Dear Mr. Smith,

I am acquainted with the charges of Mr. Geoffrey Silverman, a journalist, against ACDİ / VOCA and affiliated with it Cred Agro in Azerbaijan.  I fully support his conclusions. I will briefly explain why.

Beginning with the 2007-2008 year, some employees of the central apparatus of Cred Agro began writing to the administration of the ACDİ / VOCA (Mr. Fred, Bill, and others) about the shortcomings in the work of the manager of Cred Agro, Mr Eldar Jafarov, namely: incorrect credit policy, illegal financial and business operations etc.  Reaction of ACDİ / VOCA was confusing or not demonstrated whatsoever, not at all.  "Master" Eldar began getting rid of such employees in different ways (these individuals were pioneers of Cred Agro).

From the old team remained only Eyubov Shahid, the manager of the Zakatala branch. Shahid had a great reputation not only in the region, but throughout the whole Cred Agro.  Since mid 2009, Eldar and Shahid began to clash.  As a result, Eldar dismissed Shahid accusing him as if he would not be able to handle his responsibilities (obviously he was able to cope 8 years prior to that).

 Shahid began writing to the ACDI / VOCA USAİD branch in Azerbaijan, organized a meeting with a representative of the USAİD in Azerbaijan and reported about ongoing negative processes in Cred Agro.  Being informed about it, Eldar repeatedly warned Shahid that he should stop disturbing his (Eldar's)"life". 

In the end, Eldar arranged with prosecutors Shahid's illegal criminal prosecution (as was done in Soviet times). As evidence I am sending you:

1.       Letter and Shahid's correspondence with ACDİ / VOCA

2.       My two letters to the ACDİ / VOCA, which still remain unanswered.

You are the person how may do all conclusions.  I would just like to emphasize one thing: As I read the accusations of Mr. Silverman it was very clear that a  man named Eldar Jafarov and the administrative managers of the ACDİ / VOCA became gradually corrupt (as we say: they  are eating from one plate). 

Since 2008 and till now many employees of the Cred Agro in Azerbaijan are waiting for the possibility to provide detailed information about Eldar Jafarov's private enterprise (Cred Agro), precisely:

1.      Why is the credit policy of Cred Agro failing?

2.      About financial fraud

3.      Describe the mess prevailing in the human recourses management.

I am Shahid Eyubov's wife and I realized that it is meaningless to write and pass the facts about Eldar's fraud to the ACDİ / VOCA management (one of the former foreign principal executives was right that Eldar is a black colonel. He will make even more mess).

My husband and two borrowers (my relatives) remain under arrest in the investigation unit.  I'm sure soon Eldar will change places with them.

 God bless you! And us!


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Friday, December 10, 2010

Respected Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies: Potomac Institute?

Respected Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies, what a joke!!

Potomac Institute?http://wikileaks.enzym.su/cable/2007/07/07TBILISI1732.html

It is especially difficult to nail down the origin of any of the multitude of rumors, conspiracy theories, and political speculation in Georgia, but Georgian officials are convinced that Russian services are making an active effort to spread false information designed to undercut the Saakashvili government and to deflect responsibility for provocative actions away from Russia onto other alleged culprits. One particularly tangible example of disinformation serving Russian interests was a "Psychological Study" of Saakashvili widely disseminated by e-mail in January 2007 from an address purporting to be the "Georgian Association for Strategic and International Studies." The study makes a number of highly prejudicial judgments about TBILISI 00001732 004 OF 004 Saakashvili, and diagnoses him as suffering from an "expansive type of paranoid dysfunction...combined with narcissist type of hysteroid personality."

Post had never heard of the organization that distributed the study -- many recipients likely confused it with the respected Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies, which receives support from the U.S. Embassy -- and a check of the Tbilisi street where it was supposedly located revealed that its address did not exist.

TEFFT


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Thursday, December 9, 2010

Holbrooke - why was John Bass Appointed as Ambassador to Georgia?

Why was Bass appointed as Ambassador to Georgia?

Memo to Holbrooke, and what else is new?

S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 04 TBILISI 000203 NOFORN SIPDIS E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/17/2020 TAGS: PREL, PGOV, MOPS, MARR, OTRA, OVIP, AF, RS, GG SUBJECT: GEORGIA: SCENESETTER FOR SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE HOLBROOKE'S VISIT Classified By: Ambassador John R. Bass for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)

"Our challenge is to convince President Saakashvili that he risks losing the enormous goodwill generated by Georgia's extraordinary contributions in Afghanistan if he fails to combine them with a new push to deepen Georgia's democratic development. Your visit gives us a chance to thank Georgia publicly for its contribution, providing reassurance of our support, and thereby creating space for Saakashvili to feel secure enough to do the right thing", John Bass writes.

Commentary

There is much history here, including and the nexus to Iraq, and it is surprising that more of this is not being openly discussed, especially in the Georgian free and open media.  Let's first take a look back and connect a few of the dots, and it will start to come together.
On June 19, 2009, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate John R. Bass to be Ambassador to Georgia. One only needs to look closely at the official bio released by the White House as below:

  • John Bass has led the Provincial Reconstruction Team-Baghdad, a joint team of civilians and military personnel supporting the government and citizens of Baghdad province, since July 2008.
  • Prior to serving in Iraq, Mr. Bass served as Director of the State Department Operations Center for three years, coordinating the State Department's response to crises threatening American embassies, personnel and citizens.
  • A career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Mr. Bass also has served in Italy, Belgium and Chad. In Washington, his assignments include a detail to the Office of the Vice President as Special Advisor for Europe and Eurasia, Chief of Staff to Deputy Secretary Strobe Talbott and special assistant to the Deputy Secretary for Europe and Eurasia. Other assignments at the State Department include work on Turkey, Cyprus, NATO-Russia relations and conventional arms reductions in Europe.
  • On February 22, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke arrived in Georgia after visiting the former Soviet states of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan to expand American and NATO military equipment transport, troop transit, over flights and other logistics for the deepening war in Afghanistan. Speaking of Kyrgyzstan, Holbrooke said, "the United States would soon renew an agreement to use the Manas airbase, where he said 35,000 US troops were transiting each month on their way in and out of Afghanistan."
  •  That is 420,000 American soldiers a year at that rate. (Agence France-Presse, March 4, 2010
Georgia as transit country for Afghanistan

 

http://stevenjohnhibbs.wordpress.com/2010/05/22/u-s-and-nato-accelerate-a-mil...

 "The Marine Corps and Norway have developed a unique relationship for the storage and care of prepositioned equipment and supplies. The method of storage to support the pre-positioned assets for a MAGTF is a series of six caves in the Trondheim region of central Norway."

More dots to connect, "Norway relies on the Marine's prepositioning program as a major cornerstone of that nation's internal defence plan. With deep-water ports in close proximity to the storage caves, equipment can quickly be loaded aboard available shipping for operations in threatened parts of Europe, Africa or the Middle East. This capability was demonstrated by the supplying of equipment and ammunition in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom."

U.S. Marines will be occupied "working in the Black Sea, Balkan and Caucasus regions" to "build enduring partnerships and build the capacity of partner nation's military forces" until the end of July, by which time NATO's largest military offensive of the nearly nine-year-old Afghan war – the assault on Kandahar province – will be underway.The U.S. Sixth Fleet, headquartered in Italy, has deployed warships to the Black Sea with an increased frequency over the past few years, visiting and conducting joint drills with the navies of Bulgaria, Romania and Georgia.

  • Last autumn it was revealed that the Pentagon planned to spend $110 million dollars to upgrade and modernize a base in Bulgaria and another in Romania, two of seven such newly-acquired installations in the two nations.
  • The air, naval and infantry bases in Bulgaria and Romania have been employed for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and, although not publicly acknowledged, doubtlessly for arming Georgia before, during and since its five-day war with Russia in August of 2008.

On the eastern shore of the Black Sea, senior Georgian military officials met with the permanent representatives of all 28 NATO member states at a sitting of the NATO-Georgia Commission (created the month after Georgia's war with Russia in 2008) on May 5. A week later NATO's South Caucasus liaison officer Zbigniew Ribatski announced that the military bloc will open a representative's office in Georgia this summer. (someone that might be interested to speak with).

On May 14 the Georgian press reported the launching of a U.S.-funded military training simulation facility in the country: "The Simulation Training Centre has been formed through the framework of US-Georgia cooperation. The United States, under the ongoing collaboration, donated the Center with the cutting-edge technical equipment and developed special training programs for it." The inauguration was attended by new U.S. ambassador John Bass and NATO nations' military attaches.

There is no coincidence that John Bass was appointed based on his close connections with KBR, Halliburton and Black Water, not to mention on a local level such companies as CUBIC a) and ARCHANGEL b), two American Defence Contractors working in Georgia and the region.

http://www.cubic.com/ b) http://www.archangelgroup.org/content_main/


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Sunday, December 5, 2010

Money Laundering in Tbilisi Georgia, Waterworld

Money Laundering in Tbilisi Georgia, Waterworld

Just another shell company set up by some of Meesha's pals... Russian mafia.

Multiplex Solutions - another mysterious company which was set up in 2005 with capital of $85k and now owns Tbilisi water; they've just put the water tariff up to higher than they said they would originally be holding it to, till 2014.... You will find Eastern European investors - and Russian - money laundering operation.

The French Embassy went crazy over this deal ... need I say more, and it was suppose to be an open tender.

http://www.civil.ge/eng/article.php?id=22890

That's for residences with a "24 hour" water supply - ours is generally ok but sometimes goes off, so how do they differentiate? should everyone be bombarding them with phone calls if they pay the higher tariff and their water goes off?

Make money while the sun shines, Vano and  Meesha's pals... Russian mafia, are making money while the American Chamber of Commerce eats Crow.

It seems that Misha is planning his exit strategy, and that the Potomac Institute, Ambassador David Smith, will not help him in the last days, and will screw him over to save his own reputation.

Poor Meesha and his last days!




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John F. Teff, NewSpeak and Gullible, WikiLeaks

http://www.abkhazworld.com/headlines/603-revelations-from-tbilisi.html

Some commentators have concluded from the content of the release of US diplomatic cables on WikiLeaks that American ambassadors around the world seem to be well-informed about the countries to which they are posted. A glaring exception to this was the US ambassador to Georgia at the time of the 5-day war in August 2008, John F. Tefft. Whilst Georgian observers have concluded that the WikiLeaks' data support the Georgian version of the events of 2008, others have pointed out that, since Tefft was gullibly reporting as fact to the State Department only the propagandistic assertions that he was being fed by President Mikhail Saakashvili or other Georgian spokesmen, this is hardly surprising. However, though 'going native' has seemed to be a curse of America's representatives in Georgia since the first ambassadorial appointee, Kent Brown, in 1992, not all Americans display such lack of discrimination in their reporting from that country.

On 19 May 2008, a report 'Georgian War Footing Takes Concrete Form — Literally' by Ian Carver and Joni Simonishvili appeared at http://www.humanrights.ge/index. php?a= main&pid=7164&lang=eng, the website of the NGO Human Rights in Georgia. The article, accompanied by Carver's photograph of a newly constructed concrete ramp beside the railway-track in Mingrelia, close to the Georgian border with Abkhazia, explained that the ramp had been built by foreign construction-workers and could have but one purpose, namely to facilitate the unloading of tanks for an assault on Abkhazia, something which the Abkhazian authorities feared in that spring.

'Joni Simonishvili' was/is the pen-name of Jeffrey K. Silverman, and this is not the only revelation to come from the pen of this investigative journalist, as can be seen in the link above, which has recently come into the possession of Abkhaz World. It begins with an explanation of how this particular observer was able to recognise at a glance the reason for the construction of the concrete ramp in Mingrelia.



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Friday, December 3, 2010

Real information on EXIM BANK, Robbing Blind the American People

Tbilisi - "Georgia, U.S. Export-Import Bank in Talks on $200 Million Green Car Plan"

Georgia is in talks with the US EXPORT-IMPORT BANK on plans to spend as much as $200 million on electric and hybrid cars in a bid to create the first "green government" in the former Soviet republics. The government plans to buy about 4,000 cars in the next three to four years from producers such as General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp., says the Georgian Economy Minister, Vera Kobalia.

Well, YES, well yes if it is carried out under the direction of the Department of Defence [DOD] through the Federal Finance Bank [FFB]. A lot of this business is done through loans to buy our weapons hardware and software over in foreign countries, with GIANT loans handed out like regime savers by our Export-Import Bank [Exim] so they can afford our death-delivery manufactured goods. These loans are guaranteed by our FFB and there is ABSOLUTELY NO ACCOUNTABILITY!!!  And then you wonder why some people with little if any education, who cannot even speak their own language, are being placed in high positions in the Georgian government, such as Minister of Economy.

Meanwhile, American taxpayers are being ROBBED BLIND and Georgians being forced to flee their own country out of fear or inability to survive. A major broker of Exim deals in Europe is the consultancy agency MCKINSEY COMPANY [much like Goldman Sachs but about power more than money], which has close CIA and DOD connections in Azerbaijan and other countries, especially Afghanistan. Aircraft, aerospace, satellites, telecommunications and its infrastructure, weapons, nuclear power plants, hydroelectric dams, jet fuel production [especially in the world king of high quality hi-speed jet fuel for aerospace and commercial jet planes, NIGERIA, the king of kings of jet fuel], aluminum processing complexes, etc., are the domain of Exim loans.

How CBOs [Certificates of Beneficial Ownership] play a role in this dreadful sacrifice of our national treasury: [1982], and that is yet another can of worms to open up [to be continued].

http://ftp.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/53xx/doc5329/doc01b-Entire.pdf

"Financing - To finance its purchases of agency debt and loan assets and its direct loans to guaranteed borrowers, the FFB may either sell its own securities directly to the public or it may borrow from the Treasury. Although, according to the bank's charter, the FFB may borrow only $15 billion from the public at any time, it may, with the Secretary's approval, borrow without limit from the Treasury. Originally, it was thought that the FFB would borrow from the Treasury on an interim basis, repaying these borrowings periodically through the sale of its own securities in the market. It was assumed that the bank's securities would pay the same low interest rates paid by the Treasury on its own obligations."

Consider the following two examples. The Export-Import Bank (Eximbank) has the authority to borrow to finance direct loans to promote exports of American goods. Eximbank may borrow from the FFB, by selling a bond to it, and then use the funds to make a direct loan to the national airline of a foreign country to help it buy a U.S.-built commercial jetliner. The loan from the FFB to Eximbank is treated as a means of financing, and has no effects on the unified budget. The direct loan by Eximbank to the foreign airline, however, is recorded as outlay in the Eximbank budget and in the unified budget totals.

Contrast that transaction with the following one:

The Department of Defence issues a guarantee to the same foreign government for a loan to finance the purchase by that nation's armed forces of U.S.-made military equipment. The loan is financed by the FFB. In this case no outlays are recorded in the unified budget, although the transaction was initiated by the Defence Department." Since the FFB borrows all its funds from the Treasury, it has practically unlimited available funds. This has enabled the FFB to increase greatly the scope of its operations without having to seek Congressional approval for increases in borrowing authority. For example, at the end of fiscal year 1981, all but $10,000 of the FFB's total holdings of $107.3 billion of agency debt, loan assets, and direct loans to guaranteed borrowers had been financed by borrowing from the Treasury. This is over seven times what the FFB could have financed if it had been limited to its initial $15 billion of authority to borrow from the public."

My, how the FFB-Exim Bank matrix has grown! Far back in 2001 the following was written:

http://www.ncseonline.org/nle/crsreports/economics/econ-114.pdf

"When it was initially established, the Bank was capitalized by an appropriation of $1 billion from the U.S. Treasury. The Bank also is authorized to borrow up to $6 billion directly from the Treasury, and it may draw upon a substantial line of credit with the Federal Financing Bank (FFB). (The Federal Financing Bank is a part of the Department of the Treasury and obtains its funds from regular Treasury issues.)

Eximbank uses its Treasury borrowings to finance its short-term needs, and repays the Treasury quarterly from loan repayments and by borrowing from the FFB on a medium- and long-term basis. The Bank's authority to lend, guarantee, and insure is limited to a total of $75 billion. Eximbank's direct loans are charged at their full value against the $75 billion limitation. When it was initially established, the Bank was capitalized by an appropriation of $1billion from the U.S. Treasury. The Bank also is authorized to borrow up to $6 billion directly from the Treasury, and it may draw upon a substantial [unlimited] line of credit with the Federal Financing Bank (FFB). (The Federal Financing Bank is a part of the Department of the Treasury and obtains its funds from regular Treasury issues.)

"As part of its direct lending program, the Bank has a tied aid "war chest" it uses to counter specific projects that are receiving foreign officially subsidized export financing. Tied aid credits and mixed credits are two of the primary methods whereby governments provide their exporters with official assistance to promote exports. Tied aid credits include loans and grants which reduce financing costs below market rates for exporters and which are tied to the procurement of goods and services from the donor country.  Mixed credits combine concessional government financing (funds at below market rates or terms) with commercial or near-commercial funds to produce an overall rate that is lower than market-based interest rates and carries more lenient loan terms. The United States does tie substantial amounts of its agricultural and military aid to U.S. goods, but it generally has avoided using such financing to promote American capital goods exports."

How much of the British arms race and British Aerospace [BAE] military global trading focus is part of this slush fund of FFB Bank goodies funnelled through the Exim Bank loans? THE GUARDIAN newspaper of London has written much on the export certification and bank loan scandals which have had the misfortune of bringing heaps of attention upon themselves. BAE is now more of a presence near the Pentagon in the weapons loop around Washington DC than a member of the Airbus Consortium of Europe!
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2006/mar/17/politics.armstrade

The Exim Bank and the FFB can drain our Treasury with no checks or balances, and without virtually any public accountability, if they deem it necessary to do so. Of course, they have many methods of putting their inconsequential loans on the public record for their integrity to appear intact. The FFB, aka Federal Finance Bank, is the best darned tool the Department of Defence could ever have wished for, it is like weapons of war paradise for the killer class!  Good reading material, Becker & McClenahan, two experts on the Exim Bank, about the EXPORT IMPORT BANK 1934-2000, published by Cambridge Books in 2000.


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Thursday, December 2, 2010

McCain Dangerously Wrong on Georgia, Reckless?

http://cablegate.wikileaks.org/origin/13_0.html

McCain Dangerously Wrong on Georgia

As the New York Times revealed, http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/02/world/europe/02wikile...  on the former Soviet republic of Georgia the Bush administration abandoned the skepticism and indirect sourcing that defined U.S. diplomacy during the Cold War. The Tblisi cables, the Times reported, "display some of the perils of a close relationship":
A 2008 batch of American cables from another country once in the cold war's grip -- Georgia -- showed a much different sort of access. In Tbilisi, Georgia's capital, American officials had all but constant contact and an open door to President Mikheil Saakashvili and his young and militarily inexperienced advisers, who hoped the United States would help Georgia shake off its Soviet past and stand up to Russia's regional influence...

The cables show that for several years, as Georgia entered an escalating contest with the Kremlin for the future of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, two breakaway enclaves out of Georgian control that received Russian support, Washington relied heavily on the Saakashvili government's accounts of its own behavior. In neighboring countries, American diplomats often maintained their professional distance, and privately detailed their misgivings of their host governments. In Georgia, diplomats appeared to set aside skepticism and embrace Georgian versions of important and disputed events.

By 2008, as the region slipped toward war, sources outside the Georgian government were played down or not included in important cables. Official Georgian versions of events were passed to Washington largely unchallenged.

The last cables before the eruption of the brief Russian-Georgian war showed an embassy relaying statements that would with time be proved wrong.

But for John McCain, honored this year by President Saakashvili as a "National Hero of Georgia", all that mattered was U.S. presidential politics.

By the time hostilities commenced in South Ossetia in August 2008, McCain's animus towards Russia, which he repeatedly pledged to eject from the G-8, was already the stuff of legend. But seeing an opportunity to capitalize on his perceived advantage over Barack Obama on national security issues, McCain moved quickly and aggressively to commit the United States to Georgia's defense.

On his campaign bus in Pennsylvania, McCain told reporters, "I think it's very clear that Russian ambitions are to restore the old Russian empire." Three days later on August 14, 2008, McCain penned the now-famous Wall Street Journal op-ed

"We Are All Georgians" which opportunistically appropriated global sentiment towards the United States after the horror of 9/11:

"As I told President Saakashvili on the day the cease-fire was declared, today we are all Georgians. We mustn't forget it."

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/12/2/924931/-Wikileaks-Confirms-McCain...


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Georgian Wikileaks cables

Wikileaks have released many new cables now about Georgia, also there may be a nexus here:

Go to Google and search for site: cablegate.wikileaks.org georgia


http://cablegate.wikileaks.org/cable/2009/08/09BANGKOK1998.html

Embracing Georgia, U.S. Misread Signs of Rifts
 
But first from one of the readers as to earlier postings:Just is what one reader of posting noted - Again, your over-criticism of the Georgian government blinds you to what really happened. In another Wikileaks cable John Teft makes it clear that even on August 7th, a few hours before the fighting started, the Georgian leaders and the army were not prepared to wage a war. They were all "on vacation," dispatched Taft!! The Russians ordered the evacuation of Tkhinvali and South Ossetia three days before THEIR war plans and sent dozens of "journalists" (the propaganda machine) in. I am sorry to say that but your John McCain argument is ridiculous; coming out of nowhere, not supported by any twinkle of evidence.

 How come you cannot see that Russia started to boost the presence of its troops on April 15, almost four months before the planned operations? From that date on Saakashvili started to warn the US and, especially, the Europeans. During these four months the Georgian moves were basically reactive, not active and offensive. They brought in troops here and there on the Georgian territory because they felt what was coming or what could possibly happen. On August 7th, at 7pm, Iakobashvili was in Tskhinvali to negotiate a cease-fire but Russian representatives fooled him by pretending that they could not reach the Russian generals and the peacekeepers commandment. This simple fact is key: it tell that the Russian were on something (war) and that they did not want to change their plans. You will reply to me that this was all staged by the Georgian authorities? Get back to your senses


By C. J. CHIVERS Published: December 1, 2010 [snip]

Throughout the cold war and often in the years since, Western diplomats covering the Kremlin routinely relied on indirect and secondhand or third hand sources. Their cables were frequently laden with skepticism, reflecting the authors' understanding of the limits of their knowledge and suspicion of official Russian statements. A 2008 batch of American cables from another country once in the cold war's grip -- Georgia -- showed a much different sort of access.

In Tbilisi, Georgia's capital, American officials had all but constant contact and an open door to President Mikheil Saakashvili and his young and militarily inexperienced advisers, who hoped the United States would help Georgia shake off its Soviet past and stand up to Russia's regional influence.

NB - and now we are starting to understand the rest of the story.



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