Who Really Runs the World?
Conspiracies, Hidden Agendas & the Plan for World Government
By Andrew Gavin Marshall
So, who runs the world? It’s a question that people have struggled with since people began to struggle. It’s certainly a question with many interpretations, and incites answers of many varied perspectives.
Often, it is relegated to the realm of “conspiracy theory,” in that, those who discuss this question or propose answers to it, are purveyors of a conspiratorial view of the world. However, it is my intention to discard the labels, which seek to disprove a position without actually proving anything to the contrary. One of these labels – “conspiracy theorist” – does just that: it’s very application to a particular perspective or viewpoint has the intention of “disproving without proof;” all that is needed is to simply apply the label.
What I intend to do is analyse the social structure of the transnational ruling class, the international elite, who together run the world. This is not a conspiratorial opinion piece, but is an examination of the socially constructed elite class of people; what is the nature of power, how does it get used, and who holds it?
A Historical Understanding of Power
In answering the question “Who Runs the World?” we must understand what positions within society hold the most power, and thus, the answer becomes clear. If we simply understand this as heads of state, the answer will be flawed and inaccurate. We must examine the globe as a whole, and the power structures of the global political economy.
The greatest position of power within the global capitalist system lies in the authority of money-creation: the central banking system. The central banking system, originating in 1694 in England, consists of an international network of central banks that are privately owned by wealthy shareholders and are granted governmental authority to print and issue a nation’s currency, and set interest rates, collecting revenue and making profit through the interest charged. Central banks give loans to both governments and industries, controlling both simultaneously. The ultimate centre of power in the central banking system is at the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), in Basle, Switzerland; which is the central bank to the world’s central banks, and is also a private bank owned by the world’s central banks.
As Georgetown University history professor Carroll Quigley wrote:
[T]he powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent private meetings and conferences. The apex of the system was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basle, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world’s central banks which were themselves private corporations.
The central banks, and thus the central banking system as a whole, is a privately owned system in which the major shareholders are powerful international banking houses. These international banking houses emerged in tandem with the evolution of the central banking system. The central banking system first emerged in London, and expanded across Europe with time. With that expansion, the European banking houses also rose and expanded across the continent.
The French Revolution resulted with Napoleon coming to power, who granted the French bankers a central bank of France, which they privately controlled. It was also out of the French Revolution that one of the major banking houses of the world emerged, the Rothschilds. Emerging out of a European Jewish ghetto, the Rothschilds quickly rose to the forefront in banking, and established banking houses in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Vienna and Naples, allowing them to profit off of all sides in the Napoleonic wars.
As Carroll Quigley wrote in his monumental Tragedy and Hope, “The merchant bankers of London had already at hand in 1810-1850 the Stock Exchange, the Bank of England, and the London money market,” and that:
In time they brought into their financial network the provincial banking centres, organised as commercial banks and savings banks, as well as insurance companies, to form all of these into a single financial system on an international scale which manipulated the quantity and flow of money so that they were able to influence, if not control, governments on one side and industries on the other.
At the same time, in the United States, we saw the emergence of a powerful group of bankers and industrialists, such as the Morgans, Astors, Vanderbilts, Rockefellers, and Carnegies, and they created massive industrial monopolies and oligopolies throughout the 19th century. These banking interests were very close to and allied with the powerful European banking houses.
The European, and particularly the British elites of the time, were beginning to organise their power in an effort to properly exert their influence internationally. At this time, European empires were engaging in the Scramble for Africa, in which nearly the entire continent of Africa, save Ethiopia, was colonised and carved up by European nations. One notable imperialist was Cecil Rhodes who made his fortune from diamond and gold mining in Africa with financial support from the Rothschilds, and “at that time [had] the biggest concentration of financial capital in the world.”
Cecil Rhodes was also known for his radical views regarding America, particularly in that he would “talk with total seriousness of ‘the ultimate recovery of the United States of America as an integral part of the British Empire’.” Rhodes saw himself not simply as a moneymaker, but primarily as an “empire builder.”
As Carroll Quigley explained, in 1891 three British elites met with the intent to create a secret society. The three men were Cecil Rhodes, William T. Stead, a prominent journalist of the day, and Reginald Baliol Brett, a “friend and confidant of Queen Victoria, and later to be the most influential adviser of King Edward VII and King George V.” Within this secret society, “real power was to be exercised by the leader, and a ‘Junta of Three.’ The leader was to be Rhodes, and the Junta was to be Stead, Brett, and Alfred Milner.”
The purpose of this secret society, which was later headed by Alfred Milner, was: “The extension of British rule throughout the world, the perfecting of a system of emigration from the United Kingdom and of colonisation by British subjects of all lands wherein the means of livelihood are attainable by energy, labour, and enterprise… [with] the ultimate recovery of the United States of America as an integral part of a British Empire.” [Emphasis added] Essentially, it outlined a British-led cosmopolitical world order, one global system of governance under British hegemony. Among key players within this group were the Rothschilds and other banking interests.
After the 1907 banking panic in the US, instigated by JP Morgan, pressure was placed upon the American political establishment to create a “stable” banking system. In 1910, a secret meeting of financiers was held on Jekyll Island, where they planned for the “creation of a National Reserve Association with fifteen major regions, controlled by a board of commercial bankers but empowered by the federal government to act like a central bank – creating money and lending reserves to private banks.”
It was largely Paul M. Warburg, a Wall Street investment banker, who “had come up with a design for a single central bank [in 1910]. He called it the United Reserve Bank. From this and his later service on the first Federal Reserve Board, Warburg has, with some justice, been called the father of the System.” President Woodrow Wilson followed the plan almost exactly as outlined by the Wall Street financiers, and added to it the creation of a Federal Reserve Board in Washington, which the President would appoint.
Thus, true power in the world order was held by international banking houses, which privately owned the global central banking system, allowing them to control the credit of nations, and finance and control governments and industry.
However, though the economic system was firmly in their control, allowing them to establish influence over finance, they needed to shape elite ideology accordingly. In effect, what was required was to socially construct a ruling class, internationally, which would serve their interests. To do this, these bankers set out to undertake a project of establishing think tanks to organise elites from politics, economics, academia, media, and the military into a generally cohesive and controllable ideology.
Constructing a Ruling Class: Rise of the Think Tanks
During World War I, a group of American scholars were tasked with briefing “Woodrow Wilson about options for the postwar world once the Kaiser and imperial Germany fell to defeat.” This group was called, “The Inquiry.” The group advised Wilson mostly through his trusted aide, Col. Edward M. House, who was Wilson’s “unofficial envoy to Europe during the period between the outbreak of World War I in 1914 and the intervention by the United States in 1917,” and was the prime driving force in the Wilson administration behind the establishment of the Federal Reserve System.
“The Inquiry” laid the foundations for the creation of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the most powerful think tank in the US and, “The scholars of the Inquiry helped draw the borders of post World War I central Europe.” On May 30, 1919, a group of scholars and diplomats from Britain and the US met at the Hotel Majestic, where they “proposed a permanent Anglo-American Institute of International Affairs, with one branch in London, the other in New York.” When the scholars returned from Paris, they were met with open arms by New York lawyers and financiers, and together they formed the Council on Foreign Relations in 1921. The “British diplomats returning from Paris had made great headway in founding their Royal Institute of International Affairs.” The Anglo-American Institute envisioned in Paris, with two branches and combined membership was not feasible, so both the British and American branches retained national membership, however, they would cooperate closely with one another. They were referred to, and still are, as “Sister Institutes.”
The Milner Group, the secret society formed by Cecil Rhodes, “dominated the British delegation to the Peace Conference of 1919; it had a great deal to do with the formation and management of the League of Nations and of the system of mandates; it founded the Royal Institute of International Affairs in 1919 and still controls it.”