The chief organisers of the latest Bilderberg meeting will be circulating a report on it. Frustratingly, no one other than those affiliated with the group will see the report or gain any knowledge of its content.
More than 120 highly influential leaders attended the exclusive meeting in Lisbon, prompting the usual howls from conspiracy theorists amid silence from the participants.
Among the guests who gathered last Thursday for the start of the three-day meeting were top officials from companies such as OpenAI, Google and Microsoft. The political titans included former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. Portugal’s president and prime minister were there to greet them in the Pestana Palace Hotel.
The Bilderbergers are named after the Dutch hotel where their first private meeting was initiated by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands in 1954. They have been holding very private meetings annually in different countries ever since.
According to their severest critics on both the political left and right, the Bilderbergers are planning a new world order, a global take-over by the super-elite.
Where does the truth lie? The Bilderberg organisation says it was originally set up to prevent a third world war. Its focus has moved on to bolster free market Western capitalism.
A third of attendees at their meetings are politicians and the rest experts from business, finance and academia. Two-thirds are from Europe, one third from North America. They provide “a forum for informal discussions to foster dialogue between Europe and North America”.
The official rules of the meetings state that participants are free to use any of the information they receive provided they do not divulge either the identity or affiliation of any of the individuals they received information from. Participants do not take part in any official capacity and are not bound by the conventions of their office. As individuals, they are open to “take time to listen, reflect and gather insights”.
Furthermore, according to the Bilderbergers, “there is no detailed agenda, no resolutions are proposed, no votes are taken, and no policy statements are issued”. A private report after each meeting is circulated only to former as well as the most recent participants. Even in this report, speakers are quoted only by the country they are from.
The broad subjects under discussion in Lisbon were believed to be similar to those at last year’s meeting in Washington DC. They included AI, NATO, Ukraine, China, India, energy transition and fiscal challenges.
Prince Bernhard (1911-2004) was an enigmatic character. A formidable armed forces commander during World War II, he helped create the World Wildlife Fund but was deeply implicated in a bribery scandal involving the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation.
The many other prominent people who have attended one or more Bilderberg meetings include royalty such as the Duke of Edinburgh, King Charles III (formerly Prince Charles), Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia of Spain, the American banker David Rockefeller, British prime ministers Edward Heath, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Canadian prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau … the list goes on and on. Needless to say, each meeting demands a heavy security presence.
Most if not all attendees seem perfectly respectable, so what’s all the fuss about? Even the most moderate sceptics call the meetings “secretive”. Others regard them as “sinister”. Many critics worldwide believe the Bilderbergers represent “a shadow world government” that is seeking total domination. But is it likely that after 69 years of private or even “secretive” meetings, leading university academics would remain silent if some dreadful overall plot was being formulated?
Could it be that by those spreading hysterical disinformation about these meetings are a far greater danger to normal, rational folk than the Bilderbergers themselves?
COMMENT By Len Port
Len Port is a journalist and author based in the Algarve. Follow Len’s reflections on current affairs in Portugal on his blog: algarvenewswatch.blogspot.pt