America is in shock. In October the Washington Post reported that Forbes magazine, one of America’s oldest, most respected and influential publications, is going to be owned by a Russian billionaire Magomed Musaev. He is a notorious Kremlin ally, a man with direct ties to the Kremlin.
United States Senator Tom Cotton, Congressmen Eric Swalwell and Michael Waltz sounded the alarm and asked the US Treasury to investigate the circumstances of the sale. Based on hacked transcripts of Musaev’s conversations released to the press, Ukrainian journalists prepared a video showing Musaev’s role in buying Forbes. There is a lot more information in the ‘Musaev Archive’ than what is shown in the video, so we decided to take a look at it separately. Other angles of the story are just as shocking as the ones the other publications talked about. But first, let’s take a closer look at Magomed Musaev himself.
Who is Magomed “CASHarik” Musaev?
“Maga” Musaev is best known for his successful marriage. His father-in-law is Ramazan Abdulatipov, the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia in the government of Viktor Chernomyrdin, the Minister of National Policy in the government of Yevgeny Primakov, the Minister in the government of Sergei Stepashin and the President of the Republic of Dagestan. Magomed Musaev is also known for being the general director of the famous VDNH, a major exhibition space, for more than 10 years. In his days at the helm of VDNH, it was known throughout Moscow as a department store that sold various household appliances and computers. Russian law enforcement officers later discovered that he was charging rent of $120 per m2, but the amount recorded on the books was only $17 to $20. According to investigators, by the time the fraud was discovered, Musaev had “earned” almost a billion dollars. His powerful father-in-law saved him from prison. At that time, Magomed Musaev fell in love with cash and earned the nickname “CASHarik”.
Sunny California, the home of the iconic Silicon Valley.
After completing his “business” at VDNKh, Magomed Musaev moved to the United States and transferred money there. The Russian oligarch was granted an O1 visa, which is available to highly skilled individuals who the United States needs. He bought a luxury home for ten million dollars in San Francisco and described himself as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and philanthropist.
In one of the hacked conversations, he boasted: “All the political leaders of the world have gathered for my birthday.” Most importantly, Musaev bought real estate in San Francisco from Laird Cagan, a well-known local businessman who introduced Dagestani to the “high” circles of Silicon Valley and recommended him to others as a friend. Musaev calls him a close friend and “brother.” According to Musaev, Mr. Cagan was able to use the house even after it has been sold, and spend time with his Russian friend.
According to his official bio, Laird Cagan is the managing director and co-founder of Cagan McAfee Capital Partners, LLC (the successor to Cagan Capital, LLC), a private equity firm he founded in 1990. He helped 15 high-tech companies with investments of more than 500 million dollars. Laird Cagan’s companies have covered energy, alternative energy, health, information technology, finance, and “clean tech.” Also Cagan is known as the one of the founders of Evolution Petroleum Corporation, a company that uses advanced technology to develop oil and gas fields. Ukrainian journalists working on this story sent an official letter to Laird Cagan to talk about his acquaintance with Magomed Musaev, the sale of his house, his knowledge of Musaev’s sources of income, and why he recommended Russian oligarch to O1 visa. No response has been received.
While in California, Musaev became a close friend of John Smith, a former high-ranking official of the US Department of the Treasury. According to Musaev, he was the one who helped the Russian get an O1 visa and protected him from US and European sanctions. According to his official biography, John E. Smith is the Director of the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control and an expert in the areas of economic sanctions, enforcement, and national security. Smith says his expertise is “legal” avoidance of financial and political sanctions and defending clients in civil and criminal cases from prosecutors and regulators in the United States and elsewhere in the world. Ukrainian journalists asked the Mr. Smith about his cooperation with Magomed Musaev, whether he helped Musaev get an O1 visa for the United States, covered him from the US and European sanctions, and whether he knew the source of the Russian oligarch’s money. There was no answer.
It is not difficult to imagine that the famous American leaders and businessmen that Musaev talks about in his videos have been simply deceived by a Russian billionaire. Magomed Musaev is a unique liar who knows how to gain trust, psychological influence, persuasion, and sometimes revenge. Oleksiy Goncharenko, Deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, the party “European Union” mentioned the fact that Russia’s failures in this war at the beginning of a full-scale invasion do not mean that they will continue indefinitely. Russians are trying to find new tools to make their influence more powerful. The story of Forbes is especially important because a world-famous publication is in the hands of a pro-Putin oligarch now, and it can affect the free world with influencing US and other countries’ elections. People like Musaev should not be allowed to buy such a well-known sorce of information as Forbes, and should be limited in their actions by sanctions.
Oleg Dunda – deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, party “Servant of the People” says:
“Our partners in the West must understand that they are also at war. Their security services must act and catch all these agents of influence that exist.
Western governments and Western democracies are arranged in such a way that they are most influenced by the point of view of society. They may want or may not, but someone as president, or congressman, must listen to society because they will not be re-elected. And in this case, Forbes is used to influence public opinion. And through public opinion from below it is possible to influence the actions of congressmen, the actions of government officials, etc.”
P.S. According to US experts, the process of buying Global Forbes by Magomed Musaev has been delayed due to media attention, but it is expected to be finalized in November. According to our sources, Musaev is confident that things will go according to the plan and he is already making plans to move into his new office in Manhattan.