Kazakhgate: Experts versus Politicians

The experts of the Kazakhgate com­mis­sion in the Belgian par­lia­ment deliv­ered their pre­lim­i­nary report. Their find­ings and obser­va­tions dif­fer sig­nif­i­cant­ly from what the politi­cians told us so far. In short, the experts’ con­clu­sion is this: there nev­er was any Kazakhgate.

What the experts say

The pre­lim­i­nary report writ­ten by the experts work­ing for the Kazakhgate com­mis­sion has three clear con­clu­sions, all of them dif­fer­ent from what Georges Gilkinet, the commission’s vice-pres­i­dent, repeat­ed­ly told the media in the last cou­ple of years. Here are the experts’ con­clu­sions. (http://www.lalibre.be/actu/politique-belge/les-experts-de-la-commission-kazakhgate-taclent-la-surete-de-l-etat-59c54b3dcd70a8c26d191045)

1. No indi­ca­tion of for­eign inter­ven­tion in adopt­ing the set­tle­ment law

This part of the report was writ­ten by Patrick Waeterinckx, an expert in crim­i­nal law. He men­tions noth­ing about any for­eign inter­ven­tion in draft­ing and adopt­ing the set­tle­ment law in April 2011.

This total­ly busts the wide­spread myth accord­ing to which France inter­vened on behalf of Kazakhstan in the inter­nal affairs of Belgium, by plot­ting to change the Belgian Criminal Code in order to favor the famous Trio com­prised of Chodiev, Ibragimov and Mashkevitch.

2. The set­tle­ment agreed in June 2011 by the Trio and the Brussels pros­e­cu­tors was legal

Patrick Waeterinckx also under­lines in his report that the set­tle­ment between the Brussels pros­e­cu­tors and the Trio was absolute­ly legal. Note that this con­clu­sion belongs to an expert in Belgian crim­i­nal law, and that it con­curs with what oth­er experts who tes­ti­fied before the com­mis­sion said.

3. A poor job done by the Belgian intel­li­gence services 

According to this part of the report, writ­ten by Christine Matray, Advisor to the Court of Cassation, the Belgian intel­li­gence did a poor job on inform­ing the Belgian par­lia­ment about the pos­si­ble con­nec­tions between Patokh Chodiev and Alijan Ibragmov and the Russian mafia.

If the intel­li­gence offi­cers did their job bet­ter, the two oli­garchs might have not receive Belgian nation­al­i­ty. In oth­er words, if Chodiev and Ibragimov are Belgian nation­als today, this is, in part, because of the mal­func­tions of the Belgian secu­ri­ty system.

In oth­er words, no sin­is­ter machi­na­tions, no bribes, no ille­gal­i­ties from the part of Chodiev and Ibragimov – only neg­li­gence from the part of the Belgian intel­li­gence. For this neg­li­gence, nei­ther Chodiev, nor Ibragimov are to be blamed.

To sum it up, the experts’ pre­lim­i­nary report con­tra­dicts every­thing that the politi­cians, espe­cial­ly the Flemish social­ist Dirk van der Maelen, the green (Ecolo) Georges Gilkinet and the ini­tia­tor of the Kazakhgate com­mis­sion, Olivier Maingain (DéFI) repeat­ed­ly said over the years.

What the experts are say­ing, after months of inves­ti­ga­tions, comes down to this: there nev­er was any Kazakhgate.

This, of course, puts the politi­cians – espe­cial­ly those from SP.A, from Ecolo and from DéFI – in a tight spot. For years, they tried to gain pop­u­lar­i­ty and polit­i­cal advan­tages for their par­ties by feed­ing the media with wild sce­nar­ios. For years, they sold to the pub­lic a sto­ry that the experts are now say­ing has noth­ing to do with reality.

There never was any Kazakhgate

It’s very dif­fi­cult for the Belgian pub­lic to con­tem­plate this con­clu­sion. After years in which it was exposed to the wildest “rev­e­la­tions” in the media, the real­iza­tion that the Kazakhgate scan­dal was, in fact, a pure fab­ri­ca­tion devised by politi­cians who were after polit­i­cal gains, will come as a shock.

There is lit­tle doubt that oppo­si­tion politi­cians in the com­mis­sion will try their best to water down the experts’ con­clu­sions, sim­ply because they are so damn­ing for them. This is why they are doing every­thing in their pow­er to keep the com­mis­sion going and to invent oth­er fake sto­ries to hide their lies.

The despair for SP.A, Ecolo and DéFI is almost pal­pa­ble. The pub­lic mon­ey they spent on this fake scan­dal is prob­a­bly the worst spent mon­ey in Belgium’s recent his­to­ry. And some­body will even­tu­al­ly have to pay for all this.

Kazakhgate: Experts ver­sus Politicians

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