From The Times
May 14, 2009
Shadowy Bilderberg group meet in Greece — and here’s their address
Roger Boyes and John Carr in Athens
Don’t tell anyone, don’t breathe a word, but the world’s most powerful men are meeting secretly again to save the planet from economic catastrophe. Oh, and their address, should you want to send them your opinions, is: c/o Nafsika Astir Palace Hotel, Apollonos Avenue 40, 16671 Vouliagmeni, Greece.
Bed space is a bit tight there for the next two days while the Bilderberg illuminati hold their private conclave in the five-star Greek hotel. Every year since 1954 a club of about 130 senior or up-and-coming politicians gather at the fireside of a secluded hotel with top bankers and a sprinkling of royalty to discuss burning issues, to trade confidences and just stay abreast of the I-know-something-you-don’t-know circuit. No lists of participants are disclosed, no press conferences are held; spill the beans and you’re out of the magic circle.
For those of us standing outside the locked gates all that is left is to hope that they will sleep well, avoid jet ski injury and solve our problems for us. For the Bilderbergers it is a little like that recent MI5 recruitment ad: “See all your best work go unnoticed!”
Each country delegates two people to the steering committee that is the intellectual hub of Bilderberg. In the past Kenneth Clarke, the Shadow Business Secretary, and Martin Taylor, formerly head of Barclays Bank, have had their hand on the British tiller.
This year the club is going to talk about depression. “According to the pre-meeting booklet sent out to attendees, Bilderberg is looking at two options,” says the Bilderberg-watcher Daniel Estulin — “either a prolonged, agonising depression that dooms the world to decades of stagnation, decline and poverty — or an intense but shorter depression that paves the way for a new sustainable economic world order, with less sovereignty but more efficiency.”
Since Bilderberg does not officially exist, it cannot deny anything and is therefore manna from heaven for the conspiracy theorist. Eurosceptics are convinced that the future development of the European Union was plotted here — EU commissioners have always been welcomed into the coven, with Peter “We are intensely relaxed about people getting filthy rich” Mandelson a particular favourite. Margaret Thatcher, it is said, was a shy debutante at a Bilderberg meeting in 1975.
Jim Tucker, veteran stalker of the Bilderberg club meetings, claims that Mrs Thatcher was ordered “to dismantle British sovereignty, but she said, ‘no way’, so they had her sacked”. Left-wing conspiracy theorists believe that Bilderbergers form a capitalist nucleus, and there is a germ of truth in this. The meetings were started in the Netherlands, in the Hotel de Bilderberg, near Arnhem, by the Polish exile Joseph Retinger. He was worried about growing anti-Americanism and the advance of Communism in Western Europe. Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands agreed to sponsor the idea, the head of the Central Intelligence Agency, Walter Bedell Smith, threw his weight behind it and so did the White House.
The Bilderberg consensus is that national problems are best solved by an internationally oriented elite, that a global network of decision-makers should have a common language and that the boundaries are fluid between the monied and the political classes.
And so there has been a natural bias towards inviting conservatives and market liberals. The only socialists invited are those who “understand money”.
Ed Balls has taken part and the most indiscreet Bilderberger of all time was Denis Healey, the former Labour Chancellor and fierce Atlanticist.
“To say we were striving for a one-world government is exaggerated, but not wholly unfair,” Lord Healey told the author Jon Ronson for his book Them: Adventures with Extremists. “Those of us in Bilderberg felt we couldn’t go on for ever fighting one another for nothing. So we felt that a single community throughout the world would be a good thing.”
Another way of viewing the club is that of Metropolitan Seraphim, the bishop of Piraeus, who said that the Bilderbergers represented a “criminal cabal of world Zionism and its efforts to set up a cruel world dictatorship under the headship of Lucifer”. This line is quite common on the blogosphere, where the club’s secrecy is taken as evidence of evil intentions.
Whether Lucifer will be down there on the sun-loungers remains to be seen. But what we have been able to establish from a World Bank spokesman, Alexis O’Brien, is that the organisation’s president, Robert Zoellick, will be in Athens on unspecified business on May 14. And that US Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner’s public schedule is mysteriously empty for the next two days. Jo Ackermann, head of Deutsche Bank, will be travelling “somewhere in Europe”. Jean-Claude Trichet, head of the European Central Bank, will not be around until the end of the week.
You get the drift. Something is going on. If only somebody would let us in on the secret.