Did Jeffrey Epstein Blackmail Bill Gates?

There has long been speculation that Jeffrey Epstein acquired much of his murky fortune and influence through a sophisticated blackmail operation, but there has been no solid evidence reported in support of this theory. Until today.

The Wall Street Journal is out mid-day with a genuine bombshell story that Epstein attempted to exploit an affair Gates had in 2010 with a young Russian bridge player to coerce Gates into contributing at least $100 million to a foundation that Epstein was trying to launch, and from which he’d receive substantial “management” fees in the millions of dollars. The Journal somehow got access to many of Epstein’s emails, and they make for dynamite reading.

For those without a subscription to the Journal, here are some highlights:

Jeffrey Epstein discovered that Bill Gates had an affair with a Russian bridge player and later appeared to use his knowledge to threaten one of the world’s richest men, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Microsoft co-founder met the woman around 2010, when she was in her 20s. Epstein met her in 2013 and later paid for her to attend software coding school. In 2017, Epstein emailed Gates and asked to be reimbursed for the cost of the course, according to the people familiar with the matter.

The email came after the convicted sex offender had struggled and failed to convince Gates to participate in a multibillion-dollar charitable fund that Epstein tried to establish with JPMorgan Chase. The implication behind the message, according to people who have viewed it, was that Epstein could reveal the affair if Gates didn’t keep up an association between the two men. . .

Further down in the story:

In addition to the fees, the disgraced financier saw the fund as a way to rehabilitate his reputation, according to people he told of his thinking. It hinged on securing support from Gates, the documents show.

Epstein’s messages, which were peppered with typos and spelling errors, tried to give the impression that he was a close Gates adviser. Gates wasn’t included on emails reviewed by the Journal. The Gates spokeswoman has said Epstein never worked for Gates and misrepresented their ties in communications with JPMorgan and others.

“In essence this [fund] will allow Bill to have access to higher quality people , investment , allocation , governance without upsetting either his marriage or the sensitvites of the current foundation employees,” Epstein wrote on Aug. 16, 2011 to two top JPMorgan executives, Jes Staley and Mary Erdoes.

Stop right there. Gates didn’t need help from Epstein in order for Gates to “have access to higher quality people” or any need to worry about the “sensitivities of the current foundation employees.” And it seems JP Morgan saw it this way, too.

The Journal story does not explain exactly how Epstein came to know about Gates’s affair with the young Russian lady. (By the way, perhaps worth pondering just who it was who is said to have introduced Gates to bridge tournaments. . .)

But there’s a second angle to the story that also does not make Gates look very good:

While he was working on the charitable fund, Epstein met in 2013 with Gates and Norwegian officials who were visitors to Epstein’s townhouse. Epstein told one former Gates Foundation employee that he knew the Norwegians, and could help Gates win a Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to eradicate polio.

Gates and Epstein met together in March in Strasbourg, France, at the home of Thorbjørn Jagland, then chair of the Nobel Peace Prize committee. That September, Epstein scheduled a meeting with Gates, Jagland and others at his townhouse, the documents show.

Meetings in France? The townhouse? The island? Sounds like Gates was pretty thick with Epstein at least for a while. Gates’s spokesperson for this unfolding scandal is no doubt working overtime these days, and issued this statement:

Our documents show that Mr. Gates met with Norwegian officials to discuss the security situation in Afghanistan as part of Mr. Gates’ work on polio eradication,” said the Gates spokeswoman. “Mr. Gates has never been focused on or campaigned for the Nobel Peace Prize, or any other prize.” Jagland didn’t respond to requests for comment. He has previously said the prize wasn’t a topic for discussion during the Strasbourg meeting. [Emphasis added.]

Sorry, but worrying about “the security situation in Afghanistan” doesn’t pass the laugh test. Exactly what would the action steps be—hiring Blackwater to protect Gates Foundation grantees providing polio inoculations to the Taliban? Did Gates and Epstein think they could get a regiment of the Norwegian army sent in? By the way, isn’t “our documents show” a non-denial denial, as we liked to say back in the Watergate days?

One wonders whether the floodgates are about to open, not only about Bill Gates but other Epstein targets, though one can imagine that many Epstein blackmail victims might not want to come forward because of the compromising facts (videos?) that Epstein is rumored to have obtained.

Separately, another Journal story in their ongoing Epstein series a few days ago reports that Epstein arranged to move $270,000 for Noam Chomsky:

In response to questions from the Journal, Chomsky confirmed that he received a March 2018 transfer of roughly $270,000 from an Epstein-linked account. He said it was “restricted to rearrangement of my own funds, and did not involve one penny from Epstein.”

Chomsky explained that he asked Epstein for help with a “technical matter” that he said involved the disbursement of common funds related to his first marriage.

This sounds fishy at the very least. One can speculate what might really have been going on here. My range of theories mostly involve the term “cut-out,” but I’ll refrain from further suggestions for the moment. Keep your eye on the Journal. I suspect there is more to come.

Chaser, from Epstein’s art collection—I wonder what this guy knows:

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