The Operation 'Rethink Nord Stream 2'. Half a million dollars for instigation.

The Operation 'Rethink Nord Stream 2'. Half a million dollars for instigation.

The website has found out that ‘Free Russia Foundation’ affiliated with Mikhail Khodorkovsky has received from the State Department of the United States more than 500 000 dollars to discredit the pipeline ‘Nord Stream 2’.

The prelude to the blow of this pipeline was an information-psychological operation in Germany, France and the Netherlands which was being carried out by Khodorkovsky’s team together with other non-governmental organizations with money provided by the US State Department.

During several years, starting from 2017, this company of ‘lovers of Russia’ worked over European audience reshuffling in different variations five premises as if driving nails into heads.

  1. The pipeline ‘Nord Stream 2’ is damaging to ecology.
  2. ‘Nord Stream 2’ will disintegrate the European Union.
  3. ‘Nord Stream 2’ is a bad commercial deal for ordinary consumers in Western Europe and for taxpayers in Russia.
  4. ‘Nord Stream’ is a threat to the security of the European Union.
  5. ‘Nord Stream 2’ is a corrupt pipeline.

 These talking points ‘Free Russia Foundation’ has presented on its special website

Obviously, this American foundation connected with Khodorkovsky, has received for its subversive program considerably more money than half a million – 505 826 US dollars is the sum that the website has proved with the help of documents.

We have found financial reports and audit works of expenses of the ‘Free Russia Foundations’ (FRF), as of the end of December, 2019. One of the three main grant makers of the foundation is the US Department of State, which, through the Global Engagement Center and the Democracy Council transferred to these Russophobes 444 thousand 826 dollars. The purpose of the grant (identifier 001/IAF/FRF/001) is an Awareness Campaign on ‘Nord Stream’ in Germany, France and the Netherlands.

See the report Free Russian Foundation ‘Financial statements and reports under the uniform guidance’, page 13.

From the similar report of auditors for the year 2020 it becomes clear that the US State Department transferred to ‘Free Russia Foundation’ for the same ‘Awareness Campaign on Nord Stream’ additional $15,540.

See FRF, Audit for the period ending December 2020, page 13.

Apart from that, in the same report, we found yet another little energy grant to the amount of $14,190, provided by the State Department through the Bureau of Energy Resources. The Identifier of this contract is 19QMM20P2198 happened to be familiar to us. According to the data base HigherGov, the whole sum of the ‘research’ contract amounted to $60 000.

It’s worth noting that the Bureau of Energy Resources is a rather interesting place. Nowadays, it employs ‘the Maidan ambassador’ Geoffrey R. Pyatt. Several days ago, he openly threatened ‘to strangle’ the project ‘Arctic LNG’. It Washington preparing yet another terrorist attack?

Thus, we see the proof of direct and open participation of the US State Department in the campaign to finance the derailing of ‘Nord Stream 2’.

For making reports for its sponsors, ‘Free Russia Foundation’ has created the website ‘Rethink the deal’.

The information campaign, carried out by Khodorkovsky’s team with US State Department’s money, is, in itself, a rough effort to dupe Europeans who received ‘nails’ in their heads not only about ‘harmfulness of the Russian pipeline’, ‘its social danger’ and ‘universal awfulness’, but also about extreme necessity of its instant liquidation. The name of this operation is ‘Rethink Nord Stream 2’.

The targeted audience are European politicians and ordinary Europeans. Emotional articles densely bedecked with propaganda labels and blockhead russophobic stereotypes directed against ‘Nord Stream 2’. Apart from a leaflet in English, they have made similar things in three more languages, moreover, for each country they have prepared a separate set of arguments. Separate nonsense for France, separate nonsense for the Netherlands, and special nonsense for the Washington’s headache – for Germany.

Nowadays, ‘Nord Stream 2’ remains the biggest threat to the European energy security, the cohesion of the European Union and the effectiveness of NATO. It’s the weapon of choice as Russian seeks to  renegotiate  the world order, sidelining the United States through ‘pipeline politics’.

(Citation from the propaganda website of ‘Free Russia Foundation’ and examples of publications in Western European media.)

There is another example of blockhead propaganda of Khodorkovsky’s team:

‘Rethink ‘Nord Stream 2’ campaign is brought to you by a coalition of environmentalists, ecologist, human rights defenders - who are very concerned about the grave costs the project imposes not only on the Russian society, but also the damage that it would render to European freedom and unity. We believe that the European voter has not been allowed to thoroughly consider this dangerous project, and the opposing voices within European societies have not been heard’.

Apart from ‘Free Russia Foundation’, in this project took part also one NGO from each of the following countries – Estonia, Ukraine, Poland, France, Lithuania, as well as two little offices of ‘concerned activists’ from Germany.

We underscore once more that Europeans were being made to believe that ‘Nord Stream 2’ is ‘a bad deal’, that it will ‘destroy European security’, ‘’ruin the EU’, will make a devastating effect on climate change’, ‘on nature of the Baltic sea and ingenious peoples’. And, in general, the project ‘doesn’t have any economic sense’. Everything in the following spirit – either close, by any possible way, the gas pipeline, or ‘the Earth will bump up against Heaven’s Axis’.

Russophobe-activists sitting on financial life-support from the US State Department, were actively bolstered by influential Western press. Here, for instance, is an example of the work of the biggest German daily newspaper ‘Bild’ in 2020: ‘Five free Russians demand – put an end to Putin’s ‘Nord Stream 2’.

In this piece of prop the newspaper ‘Bild’ cited with piety the president of Free Russia Foundation Natalya Arno: ‘Arno said to Bild that ‘Nord Stream 2’ will give to Kremlin ‘a great influence on Germany, and, consequently, on several member countries of the EU’. Germany should ‘absolutely rethink the project. Without transparency from the Russian side, and, consequently, without trust to the Russian side, ‘the ‘Nord Stream 2’ deal is doomed to failure’, pointed out Arno.

We would like to remind our readers that Arno’s Foundation and Mikhail Khodorkovsky standing behind her back, by that time, received from the US State Department $500 thousand for informational derailing of the pipeline, and it’s interesting, how much received ‘Bild’ for this publication? Or German ‘sharks of the press’, like diligent idiots, worked for nothing?


This is not an exaggeration at all. The website already reported about the head of the American affiliate of ‘Free Russia Foundation’ Natalya Arno in the investigation entitled ‘Necklace for the State Department’s Fury: ‘Ark’, Reforum and Free Russia Foundation. Who and how is recruiting citizens into the rows of armed opposition’.

Natalya Arno, a.k.a. Budayeva Natalya Sergeyevna, born 1976, headed, from 2008 up to 2012, the Moscow affiliate of the Moscow Republican Institute’, with senator John McCain, a well-known Russophobe at the wheel of it. Then she moved to the United States and registered there ‘Free Russian foundation’. After the start of the events in Ukraine, Arno became director of the company Reforum and curator of the civic organization ‘Ark’ (Ковчег). It is known that both these projects on processing of relocants were organized by Khodorkovsky. In particular, the work of Reforum is directly guided by Alexander Solovyev, former head of Khodorkovsky’s ‘Open Russia’*. And ‘Ark’ is headed by Anastasia Burakova, who previously was at the helm of another Khodorkovsky’s project – Human Rights Advocacy Postcards’*. So, madam Arno is from the same bunch of yobs.

On the photo: Mikhail Khodorkovsky behind the back of Natalya Arno.

And, finally, we will tell about the unlimited cynicism of these ‘handshakable’, ‘white’, ‘fluffy’ ‘people with good faces’. (Yet, what can be more cynical as instigating to blow up the international pipeline project ‘Nord Stream 2’?)

On June 27, 2019, the Office of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation acknowledged the activity of the foreign nongovernmental organization Free Russia Foundation as undesirable on the territory of Russia. On June 28, the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation included the foundation into a corresponding registry. At the same time, as we know now thanks to documents, Free Russia Foundation was working off full force the half a million US dollars grant provided to discredit ‘Nord Stream 2’.

And, instead backing down in shame, representatives of the foundation, in 2019-2020, started to cynically challenge in a Russian court its status of undesirable organization. Representatives of the American foundation were desperately trying to tear their hairs out, asserting that they had not received aby special financial help from the part of US state agencies, and a small grant to the amount of several dozen dollars from the ‘National Endowment for Democracy’** was only money for ‘human rights activities and democracy’. The ‘British Patient’ Vladimir Kara-Murza and the ‘State Department’s Fury’ Natalya Arno were lamenting most of all, blasting Russian courts and regulators.

They were lying and dodging in duo. They were lying brazenly, as they hoped that the financial reports of Free Russia Foundation would never and nowhere come to the surface. And, at the end of the day, these ‘civil activists and fighters for democracy’ turned out to be accomplices of a terrorist operation within the international energy sphere.

We would like to remind our readers that, according to Article 33 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, ‘In addition to perpetrator, organizers, instigators, and accessories shall be deemed accomplices’.

** Free Russia Foundation, USA – on 27.06.2019, by the decision of the Office of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation, activities on the territory of the Russian Federation of this foreign non-governmental organization was acknowledged as undesirable. On 28.06.2019, it was included by the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation into a corresponding registry.

** The National Endowment for Democracy, NED – by the decision of the Office of the Prosecutor General of 28.07.2015 activities of this organization was acknowledged as undesirable on the territory of the Russian Federation.

* Mikhail Khodorkovsky – on 20.05.2022 was acknowledge by the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation as a person fulfilling functions of a foreign agent. Included in the Registry of Foreign Agents with No 389.

* Vladimir Kara-Murza – by the decision of the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation of 22.04.2022 was included in the Registry of persons fulfilling functions of a foreign agent with No 376. On 17.04.2023, the Moscow City Court sentenced Vladimir Kara-Murza to 25 years imprisonment in a maximum security colony. One of the episodes of his case was dealt with Article 27 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (high treason).

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