Over the last year, The New American magazine published (online and in print) a series of articles exposing UNESCO chief Irina Bokova, a Bulgarian communist operative surrounded by corruption allegations who was being pushed by establishment forces as the “front-runner” to lead the United Nations next year. To see some of these, click here, here, or here.
Apparently the widespread dissemination of the information, along with the tireless efforts of anti-communist Bulgarians to sound the alarm, may have played a significant role in derailing Bokova's bid to serve as UN secretary-general. In the most recent straw poll at the Security Council, Bokova dropped to fifth place, despite support from powerful figures, with many governments discouraging her from continuing her candidacy.
Unsurprisingly, communist forces in Bulgaria, which remain very powerful to this day, joined with their allies in the media to libel this magazine and its parent organization, The John Birch Society, for exposing the truth. Rather than confront the well-documented facts about Bokova that The New American brought to light with the assistance of a network of sources, insiders, and researchers in Bulgaria and beyond, Bokova's minions and supporters spread lies and bizarre conspiracy theories.
From claiming that The New American has links to Turkish intelligence or the KKK to arguing that the magazine is part of an imaginary “Kochtopus” conspiracy, no discredited libel was too ludicrous for Bokova's friends.
However, one independent media outlet in Bulgaria, Faktor, offered The New American and this writer an opportunity to respond to the charges and the conspiracy theories. The translated interview was published on Friday, August 19, in Faktor.bg. What follows is the English version.
Faktor: In recent times your name was mentioned by the Bulgarian left-wing media (associated with the former communist regime) so we decided to ask you directly the following:
1. Some Bulgarian media have stated that you are the actual author of the open letter against the nomination of Irina Bokova sent by the Bulgarian film director Evgeny Mihaylov to the member states of the UN, and UNESCO. Is that true, do you know Mr. Mihaylov and do you have something to do with this letter?
This is a very bizarre accusation, and of course it is false. I am not the author of this open letter, although I support it, and I had absolutely nothing to do with it except that some of my articles were included with it. While I know of Mr. Mihaylov and think highly of him based on the information I have received, I do not know him personally. In fact, I have never spoken to him or corresponded with him in my life. Again, this is a very bizarre claim made against me and Mr. Mihaylov, and I cannot even think of a reason why it would be made. It is one of the stranger conspiracy theories I've heard coming out of Bulgaria in recent weeks.
2. You expressed your support for Evgeny Mihaylov in a statement that Faktor.bg published. Can you comment on the decision of Mr. Mihaylov to address directly the members of the UN Security council on this issue? There are voices suggesting he is the main person responsible for the bad results of Mrs. Bokova in the second straw poll.
I issued a statement in defense of Mr. Mihaylov because sources of mine in Bulgaria informed me that he was being ruthlessly attacked and demonized by communists and their supporters in the media for bringing certain facts to the attention of members of the UN Security Council. Once again, I applaud and congratulate Mr. Mihaylov for his brave and heroic efforts on behalf of the truth, made in the face of such pronounced dangers to himself and his reputation from powerful enemies of the truth. As I said in my statement, I think Mr. Mihaylov performed a valuable service not only to the people of Bulgaria, who will not have to be unfairly tainted by the presence of Bokova on the world stage, but for all of humanity, should she be appointed to lead the UN. The facts show Mrs. Bokova and the forces supporting her are a danger to freedom around the world. From what I have heard from my sources in Bulgaria, Mr. Mihaylov has recently faced threats. I hope the responsible authorities in Bulgaria will take urgent action to make sure anyone making threats against him is brought to justice immediately.
3. Media and journalists even suggest that the Ku Klux Klan is involved in the front against Irina Bokova, since they are related to The John Birch Society (JBS) that sponsors The New American. Is this a conspiracy theory?
This is an especially silly conspiracy theory that is not even remotely based in reality. In fact, the truth is almost the exact opposite of the claim. And it is very easy to show that anyone making these accusations is either totally ignorant of the facts or deliberately lying to mislead people.
The John Birch Society has always had a strict policy of expelling racists as soon as they are discovered. This information is available right on the Society's website. It has also been confirmed even by government investigations. In 1963, for example, a California Senate Fact-Finding Committee that investigated The John Birch Society found “much evidence to the effect that it [JBS] opposes racism in all forms.” The Senate Committee also said the “organization is open to people of all religions, all races, all political persuasions except those deemed subversive.” And remember, this was 1963, when racism was not only mainstream but official policy in many parts of the United States.
It's also funny that these “media” and “journalists” should cite the Ku Klux Klan and claim it is somehow related to JBS. It was Reverend Delmar Dennis, a member of The John Birch Society, who infiltrated the KKK while working with the FBI, and dealt a devastating blow to the Klan and its leadership in Mississippi. You can learn more about this and other fascinating stories in an upcoming book on the history of JBS by the Society's president emiritus, John McManus.
Racists in the United States hate The John Birch Society precisely because it opposes racism and all forms of collectivism.
To conclude, this is a very silly accusation that would be laughed at by anyone who knows the facts. Even anti-JBS voices in the United States like the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center, which claims to track “hate groups” in America, do not make these types of discredited claims against JBS, because it would only discredit the people making the claims. But I'm sure anti-communists in Bulgaria are familiar with these types of tactics. Having lived for so long under communists, I trust Bulgarians know better than to fall for these lies.
4. Can you tell us more about JBS? They are presenting it as a “right-wing extremist and openly racist organization” that targets the rights and freedoms of the citizens, operating with the “dirty money” of the Koch brothers, who are accused of “polluting the politics and environment.”
Thanks for the opportunity to again set the record straight. While I'm not an official or authorized spokesman for the Society, I'm happy to talk about my experiences with JBS. Basically, the truth is the opposite of what the critics in Bulgaria have claimed: JBS is not extreme, it is quite moderate actually. It opposes and always has opposed racism, and it works to defend the rights and freedoms of all citizens. It is true that one of the founders of the JBS was Fred Koch, a good businessman and a great patriot. It is also true that one of his sons was for some time involved with JBS. But that is it. The JBS is in no way a “puppet” of what certain media outlets in Bulgaria have dishonestly called the “Kochtopus.”
Instead, this a grassroots organization — maybe the most successful conservative grassroots organization of all time, even according to some critics — made up of wonderful people across America. The organization was founded more than 50 years ago with a goal of promoting freedom, personal responsibility, and — with God's help — a better world. As part of that, the Society has worked to oppose communism, collectivism, fascism, unconstitutional government programs, and so on, since 1958. The Society is named after Captain John Birch, a Christian missionary to China who eventually joined U.S. military intelligence during World War II and was ultimately murdered by Chinese communists after the war was officially over. His life's story is an inspiration to many Americans, and his parents, who gave permission to use his name, became honorary life members.
JBS works to first of all protect and defend the U.S. Constitution, which is a marvelous document creating our federal government, protecting our God-given rights, and outlining the few and defined powers delegated to national authorities. We pursue this goal by educating Americans about the Constitution, with an agenda of creating a more informed electorate, which will eventually lead to better politicians and policies.
This is how the JBS describes itself on its website in answering the “extreme” accusation used by some anti-JBS voices: “The JBS is dedicated to restoring the Republic according to the vision of the Founding Fathers: limited government, individual liberty, and the rule of law. Along with America's Founders, we believe that governments are instituted to protect individual rights and liberties, and are not formed to provide for the wants of individuals. To label JBS radical or extreme for agreeing with our nation's Founders is to place that same label on them.”
Another important effort of the JBS is to expose the people who work together to attack freedom around the world. This includes communists, and a group of very powerful people operating in Washington, D.C., London, Paris, and other places that we call the “Insiders” or the “establishment.” These people often talk in public about building what they call a “New World Order” under the UN. President George H.W. Bush described this new “order” as one in which “a credible United Nations can use its peacekeeping role to fulfill the promise and vision of the UN's founders.” We oppose this idea of “global governance,” using education and truth to inform Americans while organizing to help stop it.
The JBS is divided into chapters, which operate in all 50 states, working to educate opinion molders using nothing but the truth and facts. Members of JBS come from all parts of the country, all social classes, all races, all religions, and so on, and are united only in a desire to preserve freedom under God and the Constitution. As the people of Bulgaria know very well, communism is an extremely dangerous movement that has been responsible for murdering probably more than 100 million people just in the last 100 years. JBS opposes communism and all forms of collectivism, and so of course we often get attacked by communists and collectivists, and sometimes naive people who simply believe the smears.
As a side note, the then-chairman of The John Birch Society, Congressman Larry McDonald of Georgia, was even shot down in an airplane (KAL 007) by the Soviet Union in 1983 — while he was actively serving in Congress. Many of us believe, based on various sources, that the communists captured him alive. He was also on the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee, which would have given the Kremlin even more interest in him. We still hope, as many Bulgarians do, that justice will eventually be served for all the victims of communism around the world, including Congressman McDonald.
There have been some people who call themselves “conservative” who oppose The John Birch Society. Unfortunately, these people tend to be what is known as “neoconservatives.” The ideological roots of this movement, which is totally alien from traditional American conservatism, are with Irving Kristol, the founder of neoconservatism. In his own book, Kristol proudly celebrates his background as a Trotskyite. While they have held a great deal of power in the Republican Party, they in no way speak for the American conservative movement, except perhaps in their own imaginations.
One man in particular, William F. Buckley, who founded and published a magazine called National Review, attacked JBS in the 1960s. He was a member of the “establishment” I mentioned earlier, including the Council on Foreign Relations, a very influential group that helped put communists in power everywhere from Cuba to China. He was also a member of the Skull and Bones, the secret society at Yale that both George W. Bush and John Kerry belonged to. I think it's obvious why he attacked JBS, and I imagine your readers will come to a similar conclusion if they investigate the facts.
5. Is it true that JBS considers President Eisenhower a “fanatical agent of the communist conspiracy”?
No. The reality is far more subtle. Years before The John Birch Society even existed, Robert Welch, the founder of the group, circulated a letter among his close friends and associates about President Eisenhower and his actions. Over time, this grew into a full-length book, The Politician, that was published in 1963. I highly encourage all Bulgarians to read this book.
It describes, among other horrors, how Eisenhower allowed Stalin to enslave Eastern Europe after World War II. The book also focuses on Operation Keelhaul, in which Eisenhower used American military forces to deport millions of refugees, who had fled from Russia and other communist states to Western Europe to escape mass-murderer Stalin, back to the Soviet Union, where they were executed, tortured, sent to gulags, and more.
In his original letter, Welch offered several possible conclusions to explain Eisenhower's seemingly inexplicable behavior. One of those was that Eisenhower could have been an agent of the communist conspiracy. Again, I encourage all Bulgarians to read this book so that they can decide for themselves which explanation they think best explains Eisenhower's actions vis a vis communism and his close ally Stalin, the butcher of so many millions of innocent people. Eisenhower and others promoted him to Americans as “Uncle Joe.”
6. Back to the topic of Irina Bokova’s nomination. As a journalist you have published in the recents months several investigative articles related to Irina Bokova. What was the thing that provoked your interest to the Bulgarian nomination for the post of UNSG?
My first encounter with Irina Bokova was in my research on UNESCO, the UN's “education” agency. Working on an education book with my co-author Samuel Blumenfeld, we spent a lot of time examining this organization and its very troubling role in global education. Naturally, this investigation eventually led me to Bokova, who was then and is still running UNESCO. Even a very brief investigation turned up a lot of red flags, so to speak, so I decided to dig deeper.
First, I relied on publicly available information. As I began researching and publishing more, I realized she was being promoted as the “front-runner” to be the next secretary-general of the UN. Because so little was known, I felt I had a duty to expose the facts about her, so I started by writing what I knew. It did not take long for many Bulgarians to contact me with further information. Before long, I had developed a fairly extensive network of Bulgarian sources who were keeping me updated.
As you know, there are many victims of the communist regime Bokova and her father served for so long, so there was no shortage of people offering to help in exposing her record. I am very thankful to all of the wonderful Bulgarians who helped me translate news reports and documents, and who took the time to help protect humanity from Bokova and the old communist network of spies and party operatives behind her campaign. To me, they are heroes.
7. What are the main facts and arguments that make Irina Bokova not well suited for that position?
First, I should clarify that I do not support my government's participation in the United Nations, so having Bokova as UNSG would have actually been helpful to the cause. The John Birch Society has for 50 years been promoting a U.S. withdrawal from the UN, which was founded by people like Stalin on the Soviet side and Soviet spy Alger Hiss on the American side. (Hiss, who served as the first leader of the UN, was convicted in court for lying about being a Soviet spy.) There is legislation in Congress right now that we are supporting to get the U.S. out of the UN.
As I see it, the UN is a dangerous organization that is a threat to freedom and national independence worldwide. Even top U.S. officials involved in its creation, such as John Foster Dulles, who eventually became U.S. secretary of state, have admitted that the ultimate agenda is global governance. I am opposed to this idea for many reasons, not least because the UN is dominated by dictators and unfree regimes. Its founding values are incompatible with the values upon which America was founded — American values such as the idea that rights come from God, and government exists to protect those rights.
With that said, I think there are several key reasons why Bokova should not serve as UN secretary-general. For one, it would put her in a position to fill the upper ranks of the UN bureaucracy with the type of people now running her campaign — former spies for DS, communist criminals, etc. The UN is bad enough already without making the infestation of communists even more severe.
Second of all, she would be able to use the position to promote the interests of the forces supporting her campaign. These forces are a threat to freedom, and as such, should be opposed by all freedom-loving people everywhere. Bokova's communist background is extremely troubling. Some of the problems I see include her service to the communist regime, her refusal to seriously denounce the crimes perpetrated by the regime (222,000 victims murdered according to best estimates), her longtime membership from her youth in the Communist Party, the benefits she received for being from the communist elite, the fact that she is surrounded by “former” communist spies, her statements as the chief of UNESCO, and much more. A lot of this is outlined in my articles. In my opinion, anyone tied in a significant way to communist regimes or the communist parties should be permanently disqualified from service in governments or international institutions, unless they have demonstrated repentance.
Second of all, Bokova has been surrounded by corruption allegations for years. The investigations by Bivol in Bulgaria and France were especially informative. We still do not know what the explanation is for all these luxury properties she has acquired around the world. Where is this money coming from? We do know that her management of UNESCO and her abuse of taxpayer resources to benefit herself is legendary. Basically, Bokova appears to be corrupt to the core. This is not the kind of person who should be overseeing billions of American taxpayer dollars, UN “peace” armies, huge and influential bureaucracies, etc. This is unacceptable.
8. After the two preliminary straw polls, what do you think of Mrs. Bokova's chances of winning the UN secretary-general post? What are the comments of the political circles in Washington?
My understanding is that Bokova's campaign is now basically finished. I don't see how she can recover from being exposed for a career that is most notable for its ties to a murderous ideology and regime, and for widespread accusations of corruption. Her record is now well-known in Washington, D.C., and so I think it would be extremely difficult at this point to try to revive her campaign. She does have powerful supporters, though, and so nothing is impossible. People should remain on guard.