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Saturday, September 18, 2010

George Soros threatens to sue Sun Media after Nazi comment

Remember last week’s dust-up between Antonia Zerbisias and Ezra Levant? It was one of Levant’s columns, published in the Toronto Sun, that accused billionaire Avaaz funder George Soros of some pretty nasty stuff relating to Soros’s time living under Nazi occupation in Hungary. The ensuing argument got sour very quickly, as Twitter fights are wont to do, but the upshot of it all is that when Zerbisias counselled Levant about making libellous statements, she was being eerily prescient. Soros is now threatening to sue the pants off Sun Media.

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George Soros was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1930. His father was taken prisoner during World War I and eventually fled from captivity in Russia to reunite with his family in Budapest. Soros was thirteen years old when Hitler's Wehrmacht seized Hungary and began deporting the country's Jews to extermination camps. In 1946, as the Soviet Union was taking control of the country, Soros attended a conference in the West and defected. He emigrated in 1947 to England, supported himself by working as a railroad porter and a restaurant waiter, graduated in 1952 from the London School of Economics, and obtained an entry-level position with an investment bank.

In 1956, Soros immigrated to the United States, working as a trader and analyst until 1963. During that time, he developed his own theory of markets called 'reflexivity', which he has laid out in his recent books THE ALCHEMY OF FINANCE and THE CREDIT CRISIS OF 2008 AND WHAT IT MEANS. In 1967 he helped establish an offshore investment fund; and in 1973 he set up a private investment firm that eventually evolved into the Quantum Fund, one of the first hedge funds, through which he accumulated a vast fortune.