George Soros and his plan for Greece

Posted by Dimitris Rapidis on 15/11/12
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Between real estate, lucrative strikes, and repurchase deals, George Soros has built the profile of a mysterious man. He is considered amid the very few people that pull the strings of those controlling the market trends and the fate of people globally. He is also frequently mentioned as distinguished guest in secret dinners, and as notorious handler of the so-called CDS, i.e. the risk premiums dealing with debt gumbling.

Magyar in origin but US citizen, George Soros is born in 1930 and is considered an exceptionally successful entrepreneur, while his personal fortune is estimated around $ 21,1 billions. Meanwhile and along with his occupation with the global market, Soros is also involved in political activism through the direction of Open Society, a worldwide network dealing with funding reasearch programs worldwide, but especially in the most deprived regions of the earth.  In addition to that , it is widely said that Soros, via his foundation, has been financially involved in the preparation of the “Rose Revolution” in 2003 in Georgia while playing a definite role in the reconstruction process of post-war Sarajevo after the Dayton Treatment of 1996.

Few months ago he has openly warned the EU leaders that Eurozone has entered a fatal phase that might possibly lead to its final breakup. In this respect, George Soros presented last week his new plan for the creation of a “Solidarity Fund” destined especially for immigrants in Greece. His announcement was made during a speech he gave in Berlin and dealing with the future of Europe.

Soro’s plan for the Solidarity Fund entails the financing of building constructions which are destined to refugees being sheltered in Greece. The first installments have been made by Soros himself, while a significant amount is already gathered and administered under the auspices of Raul Wallemberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, established in Sweden. As he pointed out in his speeech in Berlin, this effort is intended to urge Europeans to show solidarity to Greeks, and Greeks to show solidarity to immigrants. He also stressed out that Greece is captured and incapable of coping with the waves of immigrants crossing its borders, mainly due to the Dublin II Agreement which impedes the free pass of immigrants from one EU country to another. Therefore, as he underlines, Greece is obliged to cope with tens of thousands of immigrants, an issue that is not manageable.

Soros’s intention to finance the construction of solidarity houses and apartments in Greece can be commonly considered as a philanthropic gesture and a great endeavor to fulfill the gap left by the absence of public-led social responsibility and alleviation programs. Nonetheless, there are two additional elements in this process that are worth mentioning: 1) the way through which money will come and start liquiding the program in Greece; 2) the wider implication from Soro’s move vis-à-vis the global status of Greece.

With reference to the first one, its is expected that all money gathered will be transferred to selected NGOs in Greece that in their part will manage them accordingly. This is a common and globally-accepted way of working, but especially in Greece there is lately a growing mistrust over NGOs funding and money laundering. It is reported that during the last 10 years about 500 NGOs have been established in Greece with most of them exerting tax evasion, whereas a considerable part of them has no fundamental reasoning of existence and no specific field of activity. Therefore, it comes up a logically justified concern over the money flow process and whether any amount received will finally reach its destination.

With reference to the second one, in his speech in Berlin Soros put special emphasis on the fact that Greece is a country “in humanitarian need”. I personally reckon that while this statement is not abstaining from reality, it creates a unique precedent for the status of Greece globally. And this because “humanitarian” is a term commonly used to express a situation where a state, a region or a group of people are completely deprived from any means and the state or any other party involved with direct or indirect manner can do nothing to prevent  and deal with it. In the Greek case, while poverty rates are increasing dramatically, if extreme conditions press for it, Greece is in place to establish a safety net or mobilize mechanisms of social care in order to deal with deprived people. Therefore, it is a matter of politics whether the Greek government decides not to mobilize the very crucial mechanism of poverty prevention and control (e.g. food supplies, intervention of the army, broad collectivities) which is mainly activated during war conditions. From this point to the point that Greece is in need of humanitarian aid, there is some significant distance -practical and theoretical.

Soro’s plan while being ambitious and pro-poverty, lacks cohesion and trust in terms of some of its very basic elements of implementation. But except for what I previously advocated as some of the major drawbacks or contestable sides of the funding process, there is another set of questions that has to be answered. First, why Soros is putting emphasis especially on the immigrants and ignores locals that are equally encountered with similar poverty issues? Second, why Soros is not establishing his foundation in Greece to self-monitor developments, but decides to keep its siege in Sweden?

In this respect, it goes without saying that the “Solidarity Fund” has its contesters and supporters. But at the end of the day, is someone else other than Soros carrying about poverty in Greece or are there any other large-scale initiatives, public or private, to strike poverty before it is to late?

10 Responses to George Soros and his plan for Greece »»

  1. Comment by Karel | 2012/11/16 at 15:06:49

    Mr Soros is indeed a very influential gentleman.

    It is a pity that he cannot assist in the developments that we see needing to be carried out in the general trends to assist Greece in its obligations to the Environmental Programmes which I saw very much needed and for which the traditional routes are too costly for the country. Such was the case of incineration of wastes for which the obvious was so costly as to be untennable but the Government was so directed that they failed to observe the trends in making Bioethanol from its waste and in the process save billions as well as create thousands of jobs. A friend of mine has expressed interest here but cannot get a look in and with the current melee and financial malday it is almost unbankable.

  2. Comment by Elin | 2012/11/29 at 21:16:29

    Let me guess this straight.

    Golden dawn helps only starving Greek people = NAZISM
    George Soros helps only brown people = Solidarity.

    Leftist logic, the most racist logic on this planet.

  3. Comment by Dimitris Rapidis | 2012/11/29 at 23:38:30

    Dear Elin,

    I did not understand your comment. Please be more eloquent.

    Thank you.

  4. Comment by claire costom | 2013/07/10 at 18:29:11

    I believe the Solidarity project in Greece ,is a brillante humanitarian initiative
    from Monsieur Soros…it could become an example to apply in many other
    territories in urgent need of such generous support….as i know the philosophy
    of the Open Society Foundations….i am convinced that the same emphasis and consideration is put equally as much for immigrants and desperate poverty for
    locals in Greece…..i would be very proud to be part of the team from
    Open Society Initiative for Europe (OSIFE) going to Athens to establish
    Solidarity Houses for the helpless people in Greece…
    if i had anything to say in the Greek Government ..
    i would organize a red carpet reception to Monsieur Soros and his very efficient
    team knowledgeable in many important fields in development of humanitarian
    sustainable communities,Claire Costom

  5. Comment by ioanna | 2013/10/10 at 23:19:16

    1993
    5/1: The Foundation of George Soros announces humanitarian aid worth $ 25 million in FYROM.
    http://www.sansimera.gr/articles/419/133

  6. Comment by claire costom | 2013/10/12 at 00:52:29

    If Monsieur Soros is not establishing his foundation in Greece its because the government does not facilitate procedures and possibilities of permanent residence…from what i know about the Greek policy of immigration…Its time for Greece to face the reality that more than one thing is out of control in Greece…its total chaos within the Greek government
    itself…..who can Monsieur Sorros trust with his generous philanthropic intentions…
    there is an aspect of important considerations when investment propositions of the scope
    of Monsieur Sorros are offered in the interest of all the people in need with no consideration
    if they are immigrants or Greeks….its the lack of openness from the part of Greece that
    oblige Monsieur Sorros to establish his Foundation in Sweden…
    Monsieur Sorros has a universal approach for his heartfelt philanthropy,and of course
    immigrants and Greeks are considered equally with no discrimination on his part.
    I say again if i may advise the government of Greece to open wide their doors
    and make an intelligent Alliance with Monsieur Sorros in the interest of Greece itself
    and all the poor helpless people.I would be very willing to accept this mission
    of negociating such an Alliance with Greece and the Open Society Foundations of
    Monsieur Sorros including of course His “Solidarity Fund”. with a development plan in practicle locations to be determined locally by both parties.
    Claire Costom.

  7. Comment by Dimitris Rapidis | 2013/10/14 at 20:53:09

    Dear Claire,

    Thank you for your comment. I like your proposition on this issue.
    Would you like to be more specific on that? And, additionally, are you already involved in Open Foundation activities?

    Looking forward to your reply.

    Sincerely,
    Dimitris

  8. Comment by claire costom | 2013/10/14 at 23:38:59

    Dear Dimitris,
    For many years now i follow all the lectures and ideas of Monsieur Soros
    i admire his heartfelt sincerity in his philanthropic undertaking..i also respect his intelligence,
    and his knowledge in macroeconomy which is a must for development projects,yet i
    realize that unless response for his wish of Solidarity is echoed with the same
    enthousiasme and humanitarian motivation….we shall be” blocked” in advancing
    in an efficient way…Greece has to accept an Alliance with Monsieur Soros and
    his Open Society Foundations….if any important “Solidarity Fund” have to be available.
    Because of the political situation….it creates a certain instability…and danger of
    extreme reactions….this is why rules have to be agreed and negociated…but what is most
    important is the choice of an acceptable location given by the government of Greece
    for the purpose of development of Solidarity houses or sustainable communities…
    in fact….if Greece does not cooperate…i am sure Macedonia would not miss this
    fantastic oppotunity of humanitarian development.
    i am a humaniste myself…a free spirit indepedent thinker with no strings attached
    whether religious or political…economy and social issues are my main preocupation,
    unless important funds are attached to a development project..attached with a fair negociated alliance in the interest of all parties………i do not see a
    possibility of success in any field if we have to be realistic.Best Regards ,Claire

  9. Comment by george | 2014/03/06 at 01:27:11

    soros.another profit seeking vulture.the poor of this world do not need soros.they need us.to stop racism,exploitation,stealing of resources.They need all of humans in order to redistribute the wealth equally to all people.the rich have stolen too much for too long.now its time they pay.and they go to prison for their crimes against humans too….
    soros …..no thank you.dont even think to try to come to greece…we do not want your kind.

  10. Comment by claire costom | 2014/03/07 at 23:45:09

    George…what kind of statement is that???
    nothing constructive i am afraid….we are not doing any reform or any political
    statement….we are just talking of helping…..HELPLESS people…..
    taking advantage of the philantropic generosity of MONSIEUR SOROS….
    please do not mix matters here…..people are hungry or sick with no roof or work
    they need support which is offered by the solidarity fund of Monsieur Soros..
    and until Greece understands with its heart and not with its own greed manipulation
    the poor people will continue to suffer….the reform has to come from within Greece
    itself to allow more openess for refugies and poor greek people equally….for this project to be a success….durable success….and sustainable on long term…Greece should consider
    to allow so generous Monsieur Soros to build on a determined location with irrivocable
    agreements from a valid governement in place…other wise…of course it would be crazy
    to just hand out funds….to such unstable governance and complicated economic
    situation….plus i advise who ever in Greece has some commen sens…to facilitate
    this fantastic project…before a total collapse and bust of the whole situation which
    will then be out of control..putting poor people in deeper despair…Claire Costom


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