AUGUST 4 2009 21:41h
In order to implement his revolutionary intention of establishing an open society in former USSR countries, Soros invested millions.
- I set up my first foundation in Hungary in 1984. The idea behind it was simple. The state dogma, promoted by the ruling communists, was false and by providing an alternative we could expose its falsehood. Accordingly we supported every cultural initiative that was not an expression of the established dogma - George Soros, world-famous investor, wrote exclusively for CNN.
In his text, Soros descrives hiw he injected hundreds of millions of dollars in Eastern Europe for the promotion of the Â“open societyÂ” idea in a region under the Moscow Communist thumb.
According to him, be became inspired with the idea of an Â“open societyÂ” reading the works of philosopher Karl Popper, seeing such a society as a more sophisticated form of a social organisation than the closed totalitarian societies of the Soviet Bloc, which was constructed around centralism.
- To make the transition from a closed to an open society would require outside help and that was what my foundations sought to provide - George Soros wrote.
Photocopying machines essential for the struggle against opressive communism
When the communist authorities in Hungary became aware of the first fund, Party heads insisted that at least one party official be present in the supervisory board, even when it comes to supplying cultural and scientific institutions.
Several photocopying machines were kept locked up in Hungary at this time, for fear that someone might spread propaganda and distribute undesired materials. After some time, when several machines were imported, the Communist Party started losing control over the spreading of information.
However, Soros and his supporters lacked direct control of th efund Â– only the civilian society had control, which warned of offences and possible irregularities with the trust`s funds. As Soros wrote, his organisation had more influence on the cultural life at this point than the ministry of culture.
- Carried away my success in Hungary, by 1988 I had set up foundations in Poland, China and the Soviet Union. As the Soviet empire collapsed, and eventually the Soviet Union and also Yugoslavia disintegrated, we continued to expand. By 1992 there were foundations in 22 countries and expenditure had reached $53 million. A year later we were spending nearly $184 million - Soros wrote.
Impossible becomes possible
The plan did not run smoothly everywhere: a board member in Bulgaria, who was famed for being a human righst activist, turned out to be a racists and a Latvian businessman tried to steal the fundation money for nationalistic goals. Still, he had most problems with the Russian branch, which had to be restructured twice. The fund experience reminded him of the golden rule, which his father taught him surviving the Russian revolutions in Siberia: Â“In revolutionary times, the impossible becomes possibleÂ”.
George Soros touched on the IMF, which disappointed him, just like the Â“open societies of the WestÂ”. Western governments did not wish to burden their budgets and shifted the task of establishing the foundation to the IMF, which is used to writing Â“letters in intentÂ” to governments, making the continuation of their programmes conditional on the governments fulfilling their obligations. Even though Eastern European countries accepted the programmes, the projects failed in the Soviet bloc countries. The consequence of this was the disregard Russian heads still have towards the West, Soros believes.
- The new order in Moscow that has emerged out of the chaos of the 1990s is very far from an open society. It is an authoritarian regime that preserves the outward appearances of democracy but derives its power from its control of Russia's national resources. It uses those resources to maintain itself in power, to personally enrich the rulers, and to exercise influence over its neighborhood, both in Europe and in the former Soviet sphere - George Soros concluded.