- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 20, 2017

George Soros, the self-declared billionaire philanthropist who amuses himself by capsizing and upsetting national economies and by pressing all-things-progressive in politics, has a curious expenditure of taxpayer cash in the amount of $4.8 million — and Judicial Watch is demanding answers.

So should Americans. The money’s been sent to Macedonia — a country that leans conservative, in direct contrast to Soros’ own personal political interests.

Specifically, the $4.8 million reportedly went from the U.S. Agency for International Development, which is overseen by the State Department, to the Macedonian branch of Soros’ Open Society Foundations. And this, of course, is a clear What the Freak moment. Why are tax dollars helping Soros and his minion groups on anything — on anything at all?

Judicial Watch filed a Freedom of Information Act suit against the State Department and against USAID, demanding records related to the payments and communications that flowed between the two agencies and Open Society.

As Fox News noted, Judicial Watch also requested copies of messages sent from Barack Obama-appointee Jess Baily — who was a former U.S. ambassador to Macedonia — to the Open Society Foundation’s Macedonia offices.

The FOIA suit comes as USAID reported on its own website the gifting of $4.8 million in tax dollars to Soros’ Open Society groups to help Macedonians learn “topics such as freedom of association, youth policies, citizen initiatives, persuasive argumentation and use of new media.”

Or, in a word: activism. In two words, one might say: political activism.

Sounds like an Obama-fueled endeavor, doesn’t it? And my, how curious Macedonia just happens to lean ideologically to the right. Enter Judicial Watch’s lawsuit.

USAID won’t comment, citing pending litigation and the need to keep tight-lipped for legal reasons. But an Open Society spokesperson justified the money, saying Soros already spends through his foundation almost a billion dollars on pro-democracy efforts the world over, and by comparison, “our local foundations administer a minuscule amount of U.S. aid.”

Right. What’s a few million to a billionaire, but “minuscule.” Surely, U.S. taxpayers would disagree — particularly if their hard-earned dollars were being used to fund endeavors that countered their political wills.

Some in Congress have expressed outrage. Rep. Chris Smith, New Jersey Republican, for example, has led an effort in the House to get Bailey to explain the seeming use of taxpayer dollars for Soros projects in Macedonia. Sen. Mike Lee, Republican from Utah, meanwhile, has also expressed dismay that tax dollars funding USAID have been funneled into Soros operations — particularly when those Soros operations seemed political in nature.

“I have received credible reports that, over the past few years, the U.S. mission to Macedonia has actively intervened in the party politics of Macedonia, as well as the shaping of its media environment and civil society, often favoring groups of one political persuasion over another,” Lee said, in a letter in January, reported by Fox News.

Judicial Watch also thinks the Soros group has indeed interfered in political affairs on the Macedonia scene — a violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

And logic would suggest: Where there’s a Soros thumbprint, there’s a Soros influence. It’s time to audit USAID and see what’s been going on behind the scenes — see what taxpayers have really been funding.

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