TRAGEDY & HOPE IN THE BALKANS

Money is a strange commodity; it seems always to be in short supply, and we are reminded constantly by politicians and our over-paid economists that debts must be paid, books must be balanced, and so on. Yet when there is no option, money can be found even for the most worthy or unworthy of causes, and it can be found at a moment’s notice without anyone thinking where it came from.

As I write these words, the former Yugoslavia is being bombed by NATO. Although this is referred to by the media as a war - the first war in Europe since 1945 - it isn’t really a war any more than Operation Desert Storm was a war, because the forces massed against Iraq in the latter case and against Serbia in the former are so overwhelming that any resistance would be futile. NATO can level Serbia to the ground any time it wants, just as the United States and its allies could, and did, to much of Iraq.

The alleged purpose of the current “war” is to save lives. Notwithstanding that the NATO forces have to date killed many innocent civilians, including the Kosovans and Albanians they claim they are trying to save, most people would agree that something must be done. Even if we can’t believe everything our media tells us about Milosevic - and who does? - he is bad news; people are being “ethnically cleansed”, rounded up and driven from their homes, and in many cases, murdered simply on account of their race. Something which, incidentally, never happened even in Nazi Germany. (1)

As well as the war effort, which is costing countless millions, aid agencies are pouring money, manpower and supplies into the Balkans. Much of this is coming from ordinary people in the West and throughout the world. One man interviewed on TV recently said that he was a Ugandan Asian who had come to Britain as a refugee, (2) and was contributing his time to help others with whom he obviously empathised. Leaving that aside, the authorities in Britain and elsewhere have contributed and are contributing enormous sums of money to the Balkan crisis for humanitarian purposes as well as towards the NATO war machine. Yet again we are reminded constantly that money is forever in short supply. A recent strike of fire service workers in the South East was catalysed by spending cuts of around a million pounds, a truly paltry sum in comparison. How is it that we can afford to run a war yet not fire engines? Or that we can supply blankets for refugees yet not beds for our own hospitals? Let someone who knows about these things tell us.

In his seminal book Tragedy And Hope, Professor Quigley, a self-professed “insider”, informs us that at the outbreak of the First World War, all combatants suspended the gold standard, which was then in operation, and “each country proceeded to pay for the war by borrowing from the banks. The banks created the money which they lent by merely giving the government a deposit of any size against which the government could draw checks. The banks were no longer limited in the amount of credit they could create because they no longer had to pay out gold for checks on demand.” (3)

This was possible because “Wars, as events have proved since, are not fought with gold or even with money, but by the proper organization of real resources...The outbreak of war on August 4, 1914, found the British banking system insolvent in the sense that its funds, created by the banking system for profit and rented out to the economic system to permit it to operate...could not be liquidated rapidly. Accordingly, the bankers secretly devised a scheme by which their obligations could be met by fiat money...but, as soon as that crisis was over, they then insisted that the government must pay for the war without recourse to fiat money...but by taxation and by borrowing at high interest rates from bankers.” (4)

That is what is happening at this very moment but the majority of the people don’t realise it because in order to control the money supply “it was necessary to conceal, or even to mislead, both governments and people about the nature of money and its methods of operation.” (5)

Anyone who doubts that should ponder the fact that our banks and other financial institutions are inherently the most palatial of buildings. Recently I had cause to deliver some documents to a major bank in Central London. It was housed in a truly splendid building, like a fairy tower out of some Disney film, yet what does a bank produce? Nothing. Bankers are essentially bookkeepers because all banking is, is bookkeeping, yet banks own this coun- try, and every other by means of the manipulation of credit. In his book cited above, Professor Quigley gives a well-known quote from Reginald McKenna, a former Chancellor of the Exchequer and then chairman of the board of Midland Bank: “I am afraid the ordinary citizen will not like to be told that the banks can, and do, create money...And they who control the credit of the nation direct the policy of Governments and hold in the hollow of their hands the destiny of the people.” (6)

Extrapolating this to the current crisis means that the people who are being ethnically cleansed, expelled from their homes, even massacred, are suffering, if not directly, then certainly indirectly as a result of the machinations of those who control the credit of nations. They, and we, are nothing but pawns in the game. The American Revisionist Historian Harry Elmer Barnes wrote that we in the Twentieth Century are experiencing perpetual war for perpetual peace. Not until we as individuals and as people, irrespective of race, religion or creed, or of social or economic status, stand up and say enough is enough and take the power out of the hands of the money creators, will we control our own destinies, and curtail the faceless power brokers who direct the policies of governments and play dice with peoples’ lives.


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