resim 769
resim 769

(New York) Legendary speculator, self-made philanthropist and destroyer of ultra-liberal capitalism, George Soros, who is about to cede control of his empire to one of his sons, has become the target of ultraconservatives and conspirators, quick to attacks with anti-Semitic overtones.

The 92-year-old billionaire will hand over the reins of his organization to Alexander (37), one of his sons, he told the Wall Street Journal.

Alex, his diminutive, will succeed a character hated by part of the hard right, protesters and conspirators, who accused him, among other things, of having financed violent demonstrations, worked to overthrow governments or create a crisis. migration to Europe.

Just last month, Elon Musk took aim at him in a tweet, claiming gratuitously, “He wants to erode the very fabric of civilization. Soros hates humanity.”

At issue: the billions he has contributed through his organization Open Society Foundations (OSF) in favor of economic and justice reforms, the rights of minorities and refugees, freedom of expression.

It was after becoming an eminence of finance that he devoted his money to defending his ideas.

His biggest stock market stunt will remain his bet on the fall of the pound sterling in 1992, as England sank into the economic crisis.

After this raid, which allowed him to pocket a billion dollars in profits, he became a reference in financial circles, adored by many investors and feared by the ministers of the economy of the greatest powers.

George Soros was born on August 12, 1930 to a Jewish family in Budapest. Thanks to false papers, he and his family escaped the Nazis during the occupation of the city in 1944-1945.

After the establishment of communism in Hungary, he moved to London in 1947 where he studied at the prestigious London School of Economics, before emigrating to New York in 1956.

He prospered in the world of finance and in 1970 created his own hedge fund, which was the source of his fortune. The latter is valued by Forbes at $6.7 billion, but it does not include the $18 billion transferred to its foundations in 2017.

He embarked on philanthropy in 1979 by granting scholarships to black South African students, in the midst of apartheid. He then helped dissidents to communist regimes in central Europe.

After the end of the Cold War, its action extended to all continents and to other areas of activity.

In the United States, for example, he supports programs to help drug addicts and reform the prison system and speaks out in favor of same-sex marriage and the decriminalization of cannabis.

This father of five is a disciple of the Austrian philosopher Karl Popper and his vision of the “open society”, which involves progressive democratic regimes.

The defense of these values ​​quickly earned him criticism, but the denigration became more virulent from the 2010s, with a number of attacks reminiscent, more or less ostensibly, of anti-Semitic caricatures.

Hungarian nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orban in particular accused him of encouraging immigration and plotting against his government through the NGOs he funded. His organization had been pressured to leave the country in 2018.

Shortly after, Georges Soros was named “Person of the Year” by the Financial Times, which then called him “the father of the hedge fund industry”, but especially praised his role as “flag bearer of democracy”. progressive” and his fights against “authoritarianism, racism and intolerance”.

This business genius did not only experience success, suffering severe losses during the stock market crash of 1987 or the Russian crisis of 1998.

He was also caught by the courts, convicted in France in 2002 for insider trading in an attempted takeover of Société Générale and in Hungary in 2009 for market manipulation.

His fund continues to speculate, investing in new technologies, real estate and commodities. But this paradoxical wolf of Wall Street also regularly denounces the misdeeds of capitalism, pleading for greater market regulation.

In a 2011 essay, he wrote, “My success in the financial markets has given me a greater degree of independence than most people. It forces me to take a stand on controversial issues that others cannot express themselves on. »