Related: https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2018/08/16/craig_unger_untold_story_of_trump_russia_partnership_laundered_money_via_his_real_estate.html – 8/16/2018. Craig Unger: “Trump says he has no contacts with Russia. I found 59 people who were intermediaries between Trump and Russia, and I traced them over the years and found not just hundreds of millions, perhaps, but billions of dollars in money laundering from the Russian mafia using Trump properties. But you had criminals living in Trump Towers, and the FBI was chasing mobsters and found they weren’t living in Brooklyn. They were living in Trump Tower.”
Also related: https://newrepublic.com/article/143586/trumps-russian-laundromat-trump-tower-luxury-high-rises-dirty-money-international-crime-syndicate – Craig Unger, 7/13/2017.
Take one big step back to get the larger picture.
According to Karen Dawisha, recently deceased, the Soviet as administered by the Party Nomenklatura had in place in the mid-1980s a contingency plan for its own dissolution (just in case) — source: Putin’s Kleptocracy — so when the state dissolved (Dec. 25, 1991), the assets it had controlled were released to the “privileged of the The Party”. While the state transitioned into its federated form, the state was essentially lawless and without power to impose order on the chaos that ensued. (Aside: the power of the sovereign to police Russia has been always weak in terms of recognized police assets x area x population — the space has been historically underserved in that regard). The “Vory” coming out of the Gulag would present an especially egregious challenge to the new state and, so BackChannels believes, would be incorporated into the “mafia state“, effectively centralizing organized crime in the shadows beneath Vladimir Putin’s full sweep of power.
Now take in Craig Unger’s observations and blend with Russia’s Soviet / post-Soviet obligations and relationships involving all but support for Communism, which ideology was effectively neutralized by the official disempowerment of “The Party” at the end of the Cold War: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria | PLFP, PLO, Hezbollah, et al. | other former Communist Party alignments and former Loyalist (White Russian) extensions from the Imperial Period.
Add, perhaps, al Qaeda: http://www.businessinsider.com/exploring-al-qaedas-murky-connection-to-russian-intelligence-2014-6 | John Schinder – “Exploring Al Qaeda’s Murky Connection To Russian Intelligence” – 6-10/2014
Russia’s mafia state, narcoterrorism, integration with big “transnational crime organizations (TCOs)” . . . — Oh! Add a few other states with their active criminal and terrorist funding portions and then imagine the money sloshing about in the pockets of the middlemen — the facilitators, the smugglers — who can’t spend all that dirty loot without cleaning it up some.
NOW, good civic minded citizen (who knows not to ask too many questions), imagine receiving it clean.
What would you do with it?
What if it stopped arriving?
In recent years and now weeks, money laundering scandals have surfaced in various ways: “Panama Papers”; HSBC; Danske Bank; Norde Bank.
The gum shoes and journos do their investigative things; we get the information and the infotainment; and we cluck: “How awful!
Wait a minute — that cash, indecipherable from other cash — is in someone’s economy serving as capital or reserves or as loose dough attractive to business, charity, labor . . . everyone for everything.
Is there a price? A benefit?
One generation does the crime — and behold: Las Vegas.
And the next: good educations; good businesses; good jobs; decent enough rule of law.
Delivered every which way: America’s Addicted: 2.5 million souls.
In the pipeline and driven by corporeal and financial insecurity associated with corruption, crime, and related impoverishment and violence: Central and South American mass migration.
Reference for Adam Schiff’s (D-CA) diatribe: https://www.c-span.org/video/?459258-1/house-intelligence-committee-examines-russian-election-interference-tactics (13:07)
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