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How the KGB took over capitalism in Russia

EastOfEden

Scout Team
10 Year Member
A Reuters writer from London recently published a stunning 500 page book (Putin's People by Catherine Belton) detailing how Putin took over the reins along with his ex KGB buddies as Russia tossed aside communism and went full bore into capitalism. At this point, according to this author (who has lots and lots of quotes from Russians in her book), everything funnels through state owned institutions to Putin's desk, and he and his buddies are making so much money they are having trouble finding places to deposit it. Real estate seems to be the easiest thing to use in most countries.

The bulk of the book is about the methods used and the successes found by Putin and his favorites to create a money machine for them to do with what they will. And what Putin seems to really want is to use that money to reestablish Russia as a dominant world power by infiltrating and influencing thought In Europe and the U.S. This means influencing through social media, investment relationships, use of the Western judicial system to their benefit, etc. They are very good at it and are having great success with it.

That's the main thrust of the book but she does add a 40 page discussion of the KGB, Putin and Trump at the end of the book.

To avoid acute dyspepsia, Trump supporters probably should skip those last 40 pages where she describes how Trump turns to these people because he has burned all his bridges with legitimate Western investors - US banks won't touch him - and is seen as a total bad investment risk. From Putin's perspective, however, getting him indebted to Russian investors is all good. Here is a classic set of lines in those last 40 or so pages

"When Trump won the presidential election in November 2016, at first the Russians couldn't believe their luck. The scenes in the Russian parliament were uproarious: when a lawmaker ran into the Parliamentary session that morning to shout the news that Trump had won, the entire hall leapt to their feet in raucous applause. That evening, champagne was poured."

"Since his first trip to Russia as they dangled before him the promise of letting him brand a huge building in Moscow, ", the KGB at least believed it had recruited Trump. Whether Trump was aware of this is another matter."

The relationship Trump forged with these operatives "would form the roots of a network of Russian intelligence operatives, tycoons and organized crime associates that has orbited Trump almost ever since."

This is a scary book, with or without the Trump chapter.
 
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