The U.S.-based Action For Democracy foundation is funding organizations such as the radical pro-abortion Women’s Strike and several anti-government campaign groups in Poland, an investigative report by the wPolityce.pl news site has found.
The foundation alleges that anti-democratic forces have formed a group for the exchange of ideas on repression and corruption that threatens freedom. It calls for a retreat from populism and nationalism through activating citizens. The foundation’s board members include Prof. Timothy Garton Ash of Oxford University, General Wesley Clark who was NATO’s commanding officer, and Francis Fukuyama.
Twelve Polish organizations have received funding in Poland, which the foundation regards as a “battlefield.” They have funded organizations that they claim are supporting participation in democracy, support for free and fair elections, and engage in the “struggle against hate and exclusion.”
Information about the amounts of money granted is conspicuous by its absence. No figures are provided as to the individual grants or regarding the total envisaged for Poland. The foundation claims that it is in the process of negotiating the sums, while the Polish organizations receiving support have also refused to reveal such information, leading to questions about their transparency.
The scale of the foundation’s engagement has been tracked by Hungarian and Italian media, countries where Action For Democracy has also been active in recent elections. In Hungary, the media estimate that support may have been in the region of several million euros. The About Hungary news site revealed that a Hungarian intelligence report showed that the opposition’s candidate for prime minister, Peter Marki-Zay, received funding from the foundation and accused it of being involved in illegal funding of election campaigns.
Hungary Today cites the findings of the Hungarian newspaper Magyar Nemzet that claimed Action For Democracy funded at least five Italian organizations, including Progressive Acts, which specializes in digital campaigns for left-wing parties such as the Democratic Party in Italy.
The U.S. foundation denies these allegations and claims that it only supports civil society organizations that support the development of democracy. However, political activism is the defining feature of many NGOs funded by U.S.-Hungarian billionaire George Soros. In Poland, groups have also received funding from public bodies such as Norway Grants.
They have a right to do that, but why pretend that these organizations and their funders are not involved in party politics?