Aargauer Zeitung, Switzerland

The Bilderbergers and the Myth of Global Domination


"Critics have denounced the Bilderberg meetings for decades, conjuring up fanciful images of profit-hungry capitalists who, holed-up in five star hotels, plot their next global moves. Conspiracy theorists call them 'kings of the night' and a 'shadow government' that secretly rules the world. … Others speak of networking at the highest level."


By Christian Nünlist



Translated By Ulf Behncke


June 8, 2011


Germany - Aargauer Zeitung - Original Article (Germany)

Bilderberg conferences are legendary. Under normal circumstances, the public only learns after the fact of the secret annual conference of the world's most influential politicians, senior military officers, industrialists and bankers - meetings that have been held since 1954, and always at a different venue. Every year, the "Globocrats" (as the Economist calls them) take three days out of their busy schedules to chat about current global issues with other power brokers.


Ninety-five-year-old world banker and billionaire David Rockefeller will make it to Switzerland in his wheelchair for this year's meeting at the Suvretta House Hotel in St. Moritz, the 58th Bilderberg conference. Graubünden authorities have confirmed that the meeting will go ahead between the 9th and 12th of June.


Kings of the Night


Critics have denounced the Bilderberg meetings for decades, conjuring up fanciful images of profit-hungry capitalists who, holed-up in five star hotels, plot their next global moves. Conspiracy theorists call them "kings of the night" and a "shadow government" that secretly rules the world. The Bilderbergers have been credited with just about everything: the founding of the European Union, the introduction of the euro and the invasion of Iraq. The Internet is littered with plenty of absurd allegations: The Bilderbergers have connections with al-Qaeda, were hiding a cure for cancer or want the U.S. to merge with Mexico.


Journalistic contributions have so far come exclusively from two investigative reporters who, based on hearsay, have written speculative books about this elite circle: Jim Tucker and Daniel Estulin. Although today, it is no longer necessary to rely on speculation in regard to what is discussed at these meetings. The official minutes of Bilderberg meetings are subject to a 50-year secrecy period, so are currently available only up until 1961. Neither are audio recordings of the meetings publicly available.




Tages Anzeiger, Switzerland: Bilderbergers; The Ugly Truth - No One is in Control

Suedostschweiz, Switzerland: Call for Kissinger's Arrest at Bilderberg

Guardian, U.K.: Bilderbergers Go on a Nature Walk

BBC News, U.K.: Bilderberg Mystery - Why do People Believe in Cabals?


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But numerous reports from regular participants as well as their handwritten notes can be reviewed in private archives in the U.S. and Europe. Even the archives of the Ford Foundation in New York are a gold mine for Bilderberg historians. In addition, last December, WikiLeaks made available for download minutes of meetings from 1955 through to 1962 as well as from 1980.


Handwritten Notes


Based on these new sources, historian Thomas Gijswijtw wrote an eminently readable dissertation on the Bilderbergers in 2007, which analyzes this transatlantic elite network [Beyond NATO: Transatlantic Elite Networks and the Atlantic Alliance]. "Based on the available notes from the archives, I was able to gain a good overview of who said what and when," says Gijswijt. Thanks to the handwritten notes of individual participants, the Dutch historian was able to reconstruct in great detail the Bilderberg discussions for the years 1954 through 1966, although the official conference reports identify only the nationalities of the otherwise anonymous participants. Gijswijtw's detective work has once and for all removed the source of speculation for conspiracy theorists.


This elite club was founded in 1952 at the height of the Cold War, in order to strengthen relations between the U.S. and Western Europe. In essence, after World War II through the Marshall Plan and NATO, the meetings centered on America's role in Europe  as the U.S. effectively evolved into a "European Power." Bilderberg was an exclusively European initiative, at first funded exclusively by Europeans. Its spiritual father was Pole Józef Retinger, a close friend of Winston Churchill. In May 1954, under the aegis of Prince Bernhard of Holland, the very first meeting was held at the Hotel de Bilderberg in Oosterbeek. The principle of confidentiality has since helped create the "Bilderberger" myth, which greatly exaggerates the true meaning of the annual event.



Nevertheless, during the Cold War, the Bilderbergers did succeed in synchronizing the views of U.S. and West European elites. The three-day dialogue on the most important global issues and close personal contacts strengthened the unity of the West.   


Transatlantic Policies Influenced


In his 344-page book, Gijswijt quotes numerous examples of how the Bilderberg debates influenced transatlantic policies. The Bilderbergers called for a strong NATO and large defense budgets. In the 1960s, they isolated the Gaullists in France and strengthened relations between the U.S. and Germany, in order to keep Germany firmly anchored within NATO and prevent an anti-American Berlin-Paris-axis from being formed. They managed to turn West German Social Democrats into fans of the United States.


Who is permitted to attend is decided by a 32-member steering committee under the direction of Belgian Étienne Davignon. Amongst others, elder statesmen Henry Kissinger, Madeleine Albright and Joschka Fischer are expected in St. Moritz. There are strict rules: The handpicked guests must attend on their own, without partners. None of the participants, including many editors-in-chief, may write about the discussions. Nothing said during any of the Bilderberg meetings can be cited or published. This allows for open, honest discussions.


Networking at the Highest Level


Past participants rave about the effectiveness of the meetings, spared as they are of unnecessary bureaucratic detours. Several years ago, Die Zeit's Matthias Nass said, "You learn a lot and hone your discretionary skills. This is like a crash course in global politics." Others speak of networking at the highest level.



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[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US June 14, 3:58pm]


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