RINF Alternative News
…while the gains of the orange-bedecked “chestnut revolution” are Ukraine’s, the campaign is an American creation, a sophisticated and brilliantly conceived exercise in western branding and mass marketing that, in four countries in four years, has been used to try to salvage rigged elections and topple unsavoury regimes.
Funded and organised by the US government, deploying US consultancies, pollsters, diplomats, the two big American parties and US non-government organisations, the campaign was first used in Europe in Belgrade in 2000 to beat Slobodan Milosevic at the ballot box.
Amid the more recent unrest in Ukraine, Washington’s role was less subtle, with US Senator John McCain of IRI literally flying to Kievand taking to the stage side-by-side literal Neo-Nazis to lend the movement political legitimacy it desperately lacked.
“A number of the groups and individuals directly involved in the revolts and reforms sweeping the region, including the April 6 Youth Movement in Egypt, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and grass-roots activists like Entsar Qadhi, a youth leader in Yemen, received training and financing from groups like the International Republican Institute, the National Democratic Institute and Freedom House, a nonprofit human rights organization based in Washington.”
The article would also add, regarding the US National Endowment for Democracy (NED):
“The Republican and Democratic institutes are loosely affiliated with the Republican and Democratic Parties. They were created by Congress and are financed through the National Endowment for Democracy, which was set up in 1983 to channel grants for promoting democracy in developing nations. The National Endowment receives about $100 million annually from Congress. Freedom House also gets the bulk of its money from the American government, mainly from the State Department. “
The New York Times minces no words – the US put those protesters out on the streets after years of careful planning with some of the training and preparations taking place as early as 2008 – however, it should be remembered that initially the United States disavowed any connection at all with the protests and at first attempted to feign surprise regarding the uprisings. In fact, it was US President Barack Obama himself who would disingenuously claim during a speech in May 2011 that:
The question before us is what role America will play as this story unfolds.
Of course, that role was already being fulfilled in the form of millions being channeled into political subversion years before President Obama would even take office. He would also claim:
…we must proceed with a sense of humility. It’s not America that put people into the streets of Tunis or Cairo -– it was the people themselves who launched these movements, and it’s the people themselves that must ultimately determine their outcome.
In the wake of recent pro-democracy demonstrations in Hong Kong, state controlled Chinese news outlets have published erroneous reports that the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) has played a central role in the protests.
Reports that NED Vice President Louisa Greve met with organizers of the Hong Kong protests are inaccurate, and while the National Endowment for Democracy is supportive of the goals of universal suffrage and genuine democracy, no leader of the current protests has sought assistance or counsel from the NED. On April 2, 2014 Ms. Greve moderated a panel hosted by NED featuring prominent democracy advocates Martin Lee and Anson Chan, and the full video of that event is available online. This was one of many appearances and meetings Lee and Chan scheduled during their trip to the U.S. in the spring of 2014 to discuss Hong Kong’s future. While Mr. Lee and Ms. Chan are leading democratic figures in Hong Kong, they are neither leaders nor organizers of the current protests; neither are they grantees of the NED. Lee was honored with NED’s annual Democracy Award in 1997 in recognition of his work to support freedom of the press, full democratic elections, the rule of law, and human rights in Hong Kong.
Civic Party chairwoman Audrey Eu Yuet-mee, in addition to speaking at CCPL-NDI functions side-by-side with Benny Tai, is entwined with the US State Department and its NDI elsewhere. She regularly attends forums sponsored by NED and its subsidiary NDI. In 2009 she was a featured speaker at an NDI sponsored public policy forumhosted by “SynergyNet,” also funded by NDI. In 2012 she was a guest speaker at the NDI-funded Women’s Centre “International Women’s Day” event, hosted by the Hong Kong Council of Women (HKCW) which is also annually funded by the NDI.