The end of corruption
by the Master , through Benjamin Creme
More and more, the nations are beginning to recognize, to take seriously and to deal with, an age-old problem, namely corruption. In some parts of the world corruption has been a way of life for centuries. This has benefited the few, of course, at the expense of the many. For untold ages, corrupt leaders and powerful politicians have waxed rich on the taxes imposed on their subjects and citizens. In modern times, the large corporations of the West have been found guilty of ‘cooking the books’ on a massive scale, while in the East it is taken for granted that every transaction needs the ‘greasing’ of someone’s palm.
Corruption is endemic, and runs through some societies from the president or prime minister to the police and sport. Electoral corruption is rampant, as recent elections have demonstrated, even in countries supposedly dedicated to freedom and democracy. Such corrupt governments fail and betray their peoples and so surrender their right to govern.
In the midst of such corruption is it possible to engender trust without which the future for men would be bleak indeed? Without trust, a fairer sharing of resources would be a forlorn hope. Without trust, the global decisions required to sustain our planetary home would never be taken. Without blessed and beneficent trust, men would forfeit their right of Stewardship of Planet Earth, and would seal themselves off for aeons from further evolution.
Thus would it be, and thus should men tackle seriously, and without delay, the corrosive impact of corruption on every strata of society, and every nook and cranny of our planetary life.
To help men to do this, you may be sure that Maitreya will be at pains to demonstrate to men the eroding effect of corruption in all its many manifestations. He will show that if men would become the Gods they essentially are, they must abandon the old ways of deceit and subterfuge. To tackle the serious environmental problems, He will explain, men must work together, in trust. Without trust, Maitreya will emphasize, little can be done. So steeped in corruption themselves are the leaders of the nations, that they trust no one.
Maitreya will show that men have but one choice to create the necessary trust: to share the produce of this bounteous Earth more evenly across the world, and so end for ever the starvation and poverty of millions, dying in the midst of plenty.
Will the leaders listen to the words of Maitreya? For the most part, possibly, no, not at first. But soon the people everywhere will hear, and see the wisdom of Maitreya’s advice. They will say amen to His wise words and support His Cause. World public opinion will find its voice and its Mentor, and against its power the obstructive voices of the greedy dictators and corrupt politicians will fade. So will it be, and so will begin the cleansing and transformation of this world.
The need for trust
by the Master , through Benjamin Creme
There will come a time when men will look back on this period of travail as one of rediscovery of meaning and purpose amid a chaos of false values. For untold ages, men have set their sights on the acquisition of wealth and power, prestige and acclaim. The subtler arts of spiritual knowledge and wisdom have attracted but the few, and perforce men have walked the stormy way of warring faction, ignorance and fear.
Today, at last, a new light is bringing men to the realization of their future glory as co-workers and co-creators with God. Many are the trials which await men on the path to such a destiny, but never before have they been so ready and prepared to meet this challenge. Against all the odds, and in spite of all appearances to the contrary, mankind is about to emerge from its chrysalis of darkness, its impotence and fear. With growing boldness and assurance, the steps of men are set in the direction of unity and justice, co-operation and sharing, simplicity and trust.
That such a trust is necessary brooks no gainsaying. Naught can be achieved until the bonds of trust are set. Hitherto, the absence of trust has hampered the highest aspirations of men, cleaving the nations and placing in jeopardy the future of the race.
Trust, the reflection of love, arises spontaneously when fear subsides. Trust alone can create miracles of co-operation and lead to actions otherwise impossible.
Thus it is in the world today. Under the impress and inspiration of the Christ, the leaders of the nations are beginning to trust.
Much remains to be done but already the signs are there for all to see. A new chapter is opening in the long story of man which will set the seal on his future glory.
The growing sense of interdependence is the proof that man has not totally lost his way, that he has stepped back from the brink and is entering a new era of co-operation and realism.
In the individual sphere, the need for trust is paramount. Naught so corrupts relationships as the absence of this precious jewel. It matters not that trust is broken or betrayed; trust begets trust and allows the sweet flow of love to take its course.
Few today can envision a world in which trust truly reigns. Few there are who can visualize the calm, experience the beauty, of such a time.
Let your imagination conjure a world free from fear and crime, competition and greed. Open your mind to the concept of universal justice and peace, manifested joy.
Do this and glimpse a world in which the trust of the uncorrupted child blossoms again in the man free from fear. In that world all becomes possible. Man stands now on the threshold of its discovery.
(Read more articles by the Master)
Q. Many Lebanese are thrilled at present with what
looks like another show of popular power — the “cedar
revolution”, as it has already been dubbed. The situation
seems very complex — with Israel and the USA, Syria,
Hezbollah and possibly others all having a stake in what
happens. (1) How do you see this working out? (2) Who killed
A. The crisis in Lebanon is both complex and manipulated.
The “cedar revolution” is indeed another example of ‘people
power’ making its impact on events. But the Syrian-Lebanese
reality should not be oversimplified.
It is the current US policy to put maximum pressure on Syria
and my information is that the CIA murdered Rafiq Hariri,
thus triggering the call for Syrian troop-withdrawal from
Lebanon, implying and sowing the rumour that he was killed
by Syria despite the fact that it would not have been in
Syria’s interest to do such a thing.
There is a long-standing interdependence between these two
neighbours: Lebanon needs Syria to protect her from further
Israeli invasion, and as a huge open market for her exports,
Syria needs Lebanon’s modern financial facilities to trade
abroad. There is a genuine mutual interdependence which is,
of course, now threatened by these recent events. Syria, it
should be understood, has no weapons of mass destruction.
They do support Hezbollah and see it as a legitimate Arab
force fighting to aid its poor, oppressed, Palestinian
brothers against an aggressive Israeli regime.
Q. Was Israel involved in any way with the
assassination of Rafik Hariri, former Prime Minister of
A. They were not involved in the deed but they knew about it
in advance. My information is that the assassination was the
work of the CIA.
Q. Israel is now blaming Syria for an attack in Tel
Aviv — is this opportunism, making Syria the scapegoat and
thus creating pretexts for possible future attacks on Syria?
Q. Was the killing of Nicola Calipari, the Italian
military intelligence officer escorting the released Italian
journalist Giuliana Sgrena in Iraq, an accident — or was it
planned? If it was planned, what was the reason and who was
A. Giuliana Sgrena is a reporter for Il Manifesto, a far
left, communist daily in Italy. It is to be expected that
the US authorities in Baghdad were not enamoured of the
reports which she was sending home to Italy, in particular,
her recent investigations into the Abu Ghraib prison abuses.
The US check-point soldiers had instructions not to let her
leave Baghdad which they interpreted in the most extreme
fashion. She was lucky to escape alive, protected by Sr
Calipari who, unfortunately, was killed.
Q. If Maitreya intends making use of an opportunity to
appear on television fairly soon what would be most useful
for the groups to focus on at fairs and lectures and in
publicity material? Presumably Maitreya will be making the
case for sharing as the only lasting solution to injustice
and terrorism. If that is correct then would you advise that
we focus on His social concerns and, above all, sharing as a
A. Yes, and the urgency of making the information known.
Q. I have a question about Make Poverty History, this
enormous coalition of individuals, groups and organizations
who want to make that happen. It is very diverse and wide.
Do you think it has got the potential to speed things up in
terms of the demonstrating of the people?
A. Make Poverty History is another example of the ‘voice of
the people’ rising throughout the world, joining together
worldwide, using the internet and other means of
communication, which were not possible before, to strengthen
and make clearer and more powerful their call for justice.
Everything of that kind helps, is a step towards that
fulfilment, and every step in that direction means a step
quicker that Maitreya can take into the everyday world.
Q. Is this year  particularly significant for
the UK because of its hosting the G8 meetings as well as
holding the presidency of the European Union.
A. I hope 2005 will be very, very significant. It will be
significant in that it follows 2004 which was one of the
poorer years from one point of view, although great steps
forward have been made in 2004 towards what will be more
fully realized in 2005. The ‘voice of the people’ is growing
in power all the time and also the skill of the groups who
work through the ‘voice of the people’. It is their voice
after all. There is a growing ability of the groups to work
together, and to find means of contact and action. This will
gather momentum and very soon something really extraordinary
will happen, beyond your expectations; in the beginning
surprising, because people do not on the whole look forward
to the good amidst all the noise of the bad.
Q. Why do we not hear anybody talk about the causes of
A. Because the cause is not understood. I am not surprised,
because it is quite a sophisticated view to see that there
is a cause even behind terrorism. People are so frightened
of terrorism, especially in the United States since the 9/11
attack on the World Trade Center. The Americans are
psychologically shocked to the core. It has transformed the
thinking and feeling in America more than any other action
since the World War. It is as if something terrible,
absolutely unbearable, an affront to their ascendancy, their
invincibility, had happened, instead of saying, “that was a
terrorist attack and we must build up our defences against
terrorism” and move onto the next thing. Not vengeance on
the people of Afghanistan, who were not, on the whole,
terrorists; and not against the people of Iraq, who were not
terrorists and who have not invaded anyone for a decade
(then it was against their neighbours and not America).
It is a very difficult concept for people to grasp, that
there is a cause for terrorism. It is to do with the
injustice which prevails in the world. That is a very
difficult concept for Americans above all, and even for
people of other nations, to take on board — the concept that
justice is as real and important as freedom.
Q. Is Maitreya’s message going to Africa?
A. Maitreya lives in London in various Hindu temples. He
goes to the mosque and to churches, but He lives in temples.
He lives for a few years in one temple and a few years in
another. While He is in those temples, He teaches the swamis
about His ideas for world transformation, then He sends them
out around the world, giving people part of their
experience, and the teachings of Maitreya. Maitreya’s
teachings are going out through many swamis, educated,
intelligent men, brought up in the Hindu tradition.
Swami Nirliptananda has written a number of articles for
Share International. He is the senior swami in a temple
where Maitreya lived for years. A lot go to Asia and parts
of Africa where there are Hindu communities who will need
swamis in the temples.
For the full-length and fascinating insight provided by Benjamin Creme into the working of the great Law of Cause and Effect we refer you to Share International magazine April 2005.
Below is a fragment presented for your interest.
Karma the Law of Cause and Effect
Questions and Answers with Benjamin Creme from the Transmission Meditation Conference held at San Francisco, USA, in August 2004.
Q. Do we experience lives in which we receive the results of our previous action?
A. Of course. Your previous actions make your existing lives. That is exactly what karma does. The way our lives are led now is the result of the actions we have made in the past and make today. It is not only the past. Karma is a dynamic law that pertains to every action we make. We do not stop making actions just because we are reborn. We start all over again, and do it very assiduously. If they are good actions, they bring about good karma. If they are destructive actions, they bring about pain and suffering.
Will these people [murderers] suffer? The suffering that they caused, they will suffer. The suffering that someone else suffered as a result of their action, they will suffer in one way or another. It is not a mechanical law, but it is an exact law. It is as if the Lords of Karma weigh the quality of the energy expended from thought or action, and it comes back to you in like manner. Many of the people who are murdered in the world are working through a karmic situation.
Q. Can it be resolved through forgiveness?
A. Forgiveness is one of the major laws that mitigate and lessen the force of karma. Karma is a Law and it acts impersonally. There are four great Lords of Karma Who manipulate that Law. It is an impersonal Law, but if forgiveness is present in the person who has been harmed, that can mitigate tremendously the result of the Law. Maybe not totally, but it depends on the totality of the forgiveness. We are not all Jesus.
Q. What about the person forgiving themselves?
A. That is a different thing. Forgiving yourself has nothing to do with karma. It is guilt.
One of the major tasks of Maitreya is to remove guilt from humanity. People are guilty for no reason at all. They are guilty because they are too serious, or because they take on other people's problems, other people's hate, other people's lack of love, or whatever it happens to be. People feel guilty, especially children. Children whose families break up, their father and mother divorce, often feel personally to blame for the break-up of their parents, so traumatic is it for them
(More questions and answers)
Letters to the editor
Over a number of years, some of the Masters, in particular Maitreya and the Master Jesus, have appeared, in different guises, to large numbers of people around the world. They also appear at Benjamin Creme's lectures and meditations, giving people in the audience the opportunity to intuitively recognise Them. Some people recount their experiences to Share International magazine. If the encounters are authenticated by Benjamin Creme's Master, the letters are published. These experiences are given to inspire, to guide or teach, often to heal and uplift. Very often, too, the Masters draw attention to, or comment on, in an amusing way, some fixed intolerance (for example against smoking or drinking). Many times They act as saving 'angels' in accidents, during wartime, earthquakes and other disasters. The following letters, previously published in Share International magazine, are examples of this means of communication by the Masters.
Dressed for battle
In November 2004, I was travelling back home by train after our monthly lecture about the Reappearance. I was completely alone in the carriage because it was late in the evening. Some minutes later, two young women got on the train. They wore leather jackets, boots with metal ends, chains all around, piercings, bracelets with studs, and all the paraphernalia of a ‘heavy metal’ style. Their look was so martial that I couldn’t help feeling anxious when one of them sat on my right side and the other just in front of me. However, when they started talking to each other I realized they were harmless.
I was reading a book and had a bunch of Emerger Mundial [Spanish Emergence Quarterly] and Share International magazines on my lap. After a while, and in a very sudden way, the woman beside me who had jet-black hair and eyes, and sported a small razor in her belt asked, while pointing to the magazine: Can I take one of these booklets? Of course, I replied, and I also gave her and the other woman two more magazines and other materials, which they accepted eagerly.
This was the beginning of a very long (more than half an hour) and interesting conversation about Masters and the political/economic situation in the world. Their opinions on current affairs were informed and not at all superficial, and when one of them said, literally, that without sharing there cannot be justice, a chord struck within me. I replied that I agreed with them, but that I also thought these changes in the world were related to energies and events of a spiritual and ‘esoteric’ nature. And then the names Maitreya and Benjamin Creme came into the conversation. Oh, yes! We have heard about Mr Creme. Actually, interrupted the other woman, we are very interested in healing. That’s our concern, although we work in the educational field. Ah! Sometimes we wonder whether humanity is learning its way!
There was something very weird about them, although pleasurable, and I didn’t dare inquire into their educational activities. Besides, the train was approaching my stop, so I got up to put on my coat and leave. The woman beside me added: Most people don’t take us seriously because we dress like this. To which I replied: Dressing in such a provocative style can be a way of showing you don’t comply with our society. That’s fine, although that’s definitely not my style! The three of us started laughing, and laughing we said goodbye. When I was crossing the door to the platform, I heard the black-eyed woman calling out quickly: I’m sure we will see each other soon, and I bet it won’t be in this unpunctual train! (Unusually, the train had stopped in one place for a very long time).
Were these two women ordinary people?
CF, Barcelona, Spain.
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that the ‘young woman’ sitting beside the writer was Maitreya and the ‘young woman’ sitting in front of her was the Master Jesus.)
Two letters from the same person:
(1) On Saturday 12 February 2005 at 8.30 pm I was walking to a bus stop after work. It was my first day back at nursing after a long break and I was tired, but relieved the day had gone well. A tall black woman came towards me and asked where the White House hotel was. I explained it was right by my bus stop, so we could walk together.
She had a lovely, strong face and looked around 35 years old and was very energetic with a booming voice full of exuberance and joie de vivre. She wore a knee-length coat over a skirt, high-heels, and had a large flower in her lapel. She had a heavy accent so I asked where she came from Nigeria she said. I said I’d love to go to Africa and she replied that some of the governments were corrupt. I said governments were corrupt nearly everywhere, especially in America and the UK, and we both laughed.
By the time we arrived at the bus stop it felt like we were old friends and we talked about what a strange state the world was in. I said that people with jobs and money were stressed out and had none of the most important thing time and that people with no job and no money had all the time in the world. If we could share, then we could all have a balance of the things we needed.
She began describing life in Nigeria and talked about a relative’s family: they had a scrap car from the UK that always broke down. The husband worked so hard so that the children could go to school and came back so late he never saw them. The mother had to walk the children miles to school every day. While she spoke it seemed so real I felt like I was there, going through it.
She said that without money you cannot plan your life and that everyone should be able to plan their lives. This really struck a chord with me as I’d recently been low on money and couldn’t plan ahead.
She explained that many of her relatives rely on her sending them money to survive. She laughed and said that sometimes she knows they exaggerate what they need: that through asking for help from her they can become dishonest. She explained the same happens with African governments: they exaggerate what they need and it corrupts the relationship with Western governments. Without fairness and justice, there will always be corruption on both sides: corruption exists everywhere, and we need to clean it all up, she said.
Then she told me an old African saying: The rich man cannot sleep for the rumbling of the poor man’s stomach.
We shook hands and said goodbye, exchanging names: she was called Kebi.
I sat on the top of the bus feeling light-hearted and happy and pondered on how important it is for people to be able to plan their future.
Was the lady I met Maitreya?
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that the ‘Nigerian lady’ was Maitreya.)
(2) Earlier in the week I attended an induction day for new employees at the hospital. I joined a large crowd of people at the bus stop wrapped up in scarves and woolly hats on a cold, drizzly Monday morning at 8.30. A downcast mood of what are we doing here filled the air. Through the crowd I watched a blonde-haired mother dragging a reluctant child towards me. The girl looked around five years old with pigtails, raincoat and school bag. She had a most unusual face, more like a grown-up’s than a child. As she passed by we connected somehow in mutual empathy. She raised her hand to me, not in a wave, but in a gesture of support and gave me a look that said: Oh well. Better just get on with it! I was taken aback and felt moved. I began thinking about the burden of work for so many people much worse off than me, and of my first day at school when my mother had a hard job persuading me to go!
Were the girl and her mother Masters?
Gill Fry, London, UK.
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that the ‘woman’ was the Master Jesus and the ‘girl’ was Maitreya.)
Signs of the time
Toddler’s miraculous escape
A 20-month-old child was miraculously unharmed when an Alpha Romeo car mounted the pavement in Mexborough, South Yorkshire, UK, and flattened the child’s pushchair after the driver had collapsed with one foot jammed on the accelerator.
Toddler Molly Wright was thrown into the air, bounced on the bonnet, and was dragged under the vehicle, to the horror of onlookers. She ended up wedged in a wheel-arch, which seems to have prevented her being crushed under the wheels. Her mother Vanessa suffered a broken leg, pelvis and arm. Molly’s father, Steve Wright, said: The word ‘miracle’ might sound over the top, but that’s what it was. (Source: The Times, UK)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that the toddler was protected by the Master Jesus.)
Miracle tsunami warning
I looked around and my house had gone was the the headline of a small report from Sri Lanka. Sagara, a sandseller, stands disillusioned among the ruins of what a short time ago was his house. His village of some 50 families, close to the fishing town of Chilaw and about 80 km to the north of the capital Colombo, was completely destroyed after the tsunami in December 2004. We ran away, I turned around and all of a sudden my house had gone, he says.
Sagara and Sidney, also a sandseller and local resident, were diving in the river to carry up sand when, according to Sidney, an old woman with a baby in her arms came to warn us that the water was rising higher and higher. And then there was the first bang, a three-metre-high wave. Sagara continues: And then the water withdrew half a kilometre. You could see the sea floor, the water had gone completely and then it came up again with a still higher wave, with even more force. God sent us a warning, but the woman and baby were swallowed by the sea. Maybe they were spirits. I had never seen her before.
(Source: NRC Handelsblad, the Netherlands)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that the ‘old woman’ was the Master Jesus, and the ‘baby’ was Maitreya.)
Florida Keys rescue
On 11 December 2004, 80-year-old Cuban-born lawyer Ignacio Siberio took his boat out 12 miles off the Florida Keys on a fishing trip. However, while he was free-diving for snapper and grouper beneath the surface, his boat dragged anchor in strong winds, and drifted away on the Gulf Stream currents. Exhausted by his attempts to swim after it, he encountered one small buoy and clung to it all night, his flippers grazed by large predators (shark or barracuda) swimming beneath him. Eventually he let go and set off to swim to shore, 12 miles away. When found by rescuers he had been in the freezing Atlantic water for 20 hours, and swimming for five hours, but was suffering only from mild hypothermia.
The number painted on the buoy 731 was the same as Mr Siberio’s birthday, July 31, which he thought was providential.
(Source: The Guardian, UK)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that he was saved by the Master Jesus.)
Site of Jesus’ first ‘miracle’ discovered
Archaeologists who found pottery shards among the roots of ancient olive trees in Cana believe they may have discovered the site where Jesus turned water into wine at a Jewish wedding, also described in St John’s Gospel (Ch.2).
The jars, discovered in a last-minute ‘salvage dig’ before a house is built on the site, date from the period of the Roman occupation when Jesus was travelling in Galilee. Archaeologist Yardena Alexander believes the find proves that modern-day Arab Cana was built alongside the ancient Galilee village, between Nazareth and Capernaum. All indications from the archaeological excavations suggest that the site of the wedding was (modern-day) Cana, the site that we have been investigating, she said. A Jewish ritual bath excavated at the house is among other evidence she believes substantiates her claim.
The find is disputed by American archaeologists at a rival site some miles to the north, who have also found pieces of stone jars dating from the time of Jesus, which they believe proves they have discovered the real Biblical Cana.
Yardena Alexander, however, remains convinced. We’re really working very hard to save some of this site because what we do have here is a village of Jesus, she said. And it was here that he carried out the first miracle. (Source: www.msnbc.com)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that the site discovered by Yardena Alexander is the authentic Biblical site of Cana. Jesus, however, did not turn ‘the water into wine’ as is understood, literally, today, but opened the inner services of the Essene Community (of which He was the Head) to the ‘ordinary’ people who had up till then been excluded from them, thus turning their ‘ordinary water’ into the ‘wine’ of the priests.)
Underground UFO bases in Himalayas
Kongka La, a low ridge pass in the Himalayas, is located in the disputed India-China border area in Ladakh. It is one of the least accessed areas in the world, and by agreement China and India do not patrol that part of the border. Local people on both sides of the border have reported seeing UFOs coming out of the ground in the area. According to these witnesses, UFO underground bases are located in this region and both the Indian and Chinese governments are aware of this.
Recently, Hindu pilgrims on their way to Mount Kailash from the Western Pass saw strange lights in the sky. Local guides in the Chinese territory told the pilgrims that this is a normal phenomenon in the Kongka Pass area. Lighted, triangular silent craft appear from underground and move almost vertically upwards. Some of the pilgrims wanted to visit the reported UFO site. They were refused entry from the Chinese side and when they tried to approach the site from the Indian side, the Indian border patrol also turned them down in spite of their permit to travel between the two countries. According to the pilgrims, the security personnel told them that they are ordered not to allow anyone near the area of interest, and that it is true that strange objects come out from under the ground with bright, blinking lights.
According to local people, the extra-terrestrial presence is well known and located deep underground. They believe neither the Indian or Chinese governments wants to expose this fact. When they bring up the subject with local government officials, they are told to keep quiet.
Recently, in a local school, young children from the area entered a drawing contest. More than half the drawings showed strange objects in the sky or coming out of the mountains. (Source: India Daily, India)
(Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that these are authentic sightings. The area is a long-standing underground base for UFOs (spaceships) from Mars.)
Confessions of an economic hit man
Interview with John Perkins
by Cher Gilmore
(see photo), American author of the best-selling book Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, worked for international consulting firm Charles T. Main Inc. (MAIN) from 1971-1980. Subsequently he founded Independent Power Systems Inc., a commercial company that proved coal could be burned in power plants without producing acid rain. Perkins also founded the non-profit Dream Change Coalition and co-founded the Pachamama Alliance, Eco-Ethics Institute, and other non-profit companies for the purpose of changing consciousness and helping indigenous peoples protect the rainforests from oil-company encroachment.
His book’s tone and content are set by the first paragraph of the preface: Economic hit men (EHMs) are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. They funnel money from the World Bank, the US Agency for International Development (USAID), and other foreign ‘aid’ organizations into the coffers of huge corporations and the pockets of a few wealthy families who control the planet’s resources. Their tools include fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder. They play a game as old as empire, but one that has taken on new and terrifying dimensions during this time of globalization. I should know; I was an EHM.
Share International: How does the ‘economic hit man’ (EHM) system work?
John Perkins: Basically our job is to create empire, and we have managed to create the first truly global empire in the history of the world. We created it without the military for the most part, and it is an empire that is unique in that there is no emperor, no king. Instead we have what I call a corporatocracy a group of men and a few women who run our biggest corporations, our banks, and our government.
There are many ways we have created this empire, but perhaps most typically we identify a developing country that has resources we covet, such as oil. Then we arrange a large loan from the World Bank or its affiliate organizations to that country. Most of the loan goes directly to US corporations, ones that we have heard of, such as Bechtel, Halliburton, Stone & Webster, to build large infrastructure projects such as power plants, harbors, industrial parks and other projects that serve the rich of those countries. The country then is left holding a huge debt, so large that it cannot possibly repay it. At some point the economic hit men go back in and say: Look, you owe us a lot of money, you can’t pay your debts, so give us a pound of flesh. Sell our oil companies your oil real cheap, or allow us to build military bases on your land, or vote with us at the next critical UN vote, or send your troops to Iraq or some other place where we’d like you to support us. That type of thing. In that process, we have managed to build this amazing empire.
SI: Please explain the connection between corporatocracy and terrorism during your time as an EHM in Saudi Arabia.
JP: In the early 1970s, OPEC [Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries] essentially brought us to our knees by shutting down oil supplies. We had long lines of cars waiting at gas stations and we were afraid we were going to have another depression like that of 1929. The Treasury Department came to me and other EHMs and said: We can’t be held hostage by OPEC. You’ve got to come up with a plan so this won’t happen again. We knew that the key to any such plan would be Saudi Arabia, because they had more oil than anyone else and could basically control the supply. And their royal family, the House of Saud, were corruptible. So we went to Saudi Arabia and to make a long story short, we struck this deal whereby the royal house agreed to send most of the money it earned from selling petroleum around the world to the United States, to invest in government securities. The interest from those securities would be used by the US Treasury Department to hire US companies to build Saudi Arabia in the Western image desalinization plants, highways, ports, power plants and entire cities out of the desert. So today, Saudi Arabia is a very Westernized country.
Part of the deal also was that the House of Saud would agree to keep the price of oil within limits acceptable to us, and we would agree to keep the House of Saud in power so long as it kept its end of the deal. All of this has held in place, it has all worked, up to today. But it has also generated what the CIA calls ‘blowback’. This is a CIA term that means a covert activity that seems to be successful, but generates some serious unforeseen consequences. There is tremendous anger around the Islamic world aimed toward the House of Saud over what happened in Saudi Arabia, because Muslims are not happy to see their most sacred sites, Mecca and Medina, surrounded by Westernized cities and petrochemical plants and McDonalds. At this point in time, the House of Saud is very unstable. There have been many assassinations in the country, a lot of violence. There is a lot of unhappiness, a lot of high unemployment. Oil, as in so many other places, has turned out to be not a benefit but rather a curse for most of the people. All of this has contributed to creating a tremendous amount of anger in the Muslim world, which has led both directly and indirectly to Al Qaeda and other terrorist movements.
SI: What do you see happening from now on in the Middle East?
JP: I think we have created and I mean that we have created a very dangerous, unstable situation in the Middle East. One of the reasons we have done this, of course, is because we also want to control China, Japan and Korea, and they get a lot of their oil from the Middle East. We are not that dependent on the Middle East for our oil, but they are. So that has been part of our policy. We would love to control the oil of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, but in fact we have gotten ourselves into this quagmire in Iraq, and in the process have managed to create a great deal more anger than we had at the time of 9/11 even. There is now a huge force of terrorists in Iraq, many of whom are not Iraqis. If the administration is able to use these recent elections (which seem to have backfired) as an excuse to get out of Iraq, what is going to happen to all those terrorists that have been bred and trained and are really angry? Where are they going to go?
SI: You have observed that all empires ultimately fail, and that usually a new empire takes the dying one’s place. But you have also proposed another possibility that we could wake up and truly work to begin sharing the world’s resources with all peoples. What would it take to wake us up before it is too late?
JP: We are in the process of waking up. When we follow our hearts, we are awake. When I was an economic hit man, I knew in my heart that what I was doing was wrong, but I could convince myself through rationalization, through looking at business books and reports at the World Bank, that what I was doing was the right thing. We are at a stage now where most Americans, and most people around the world, are deeply troubled by what is going on, and in our hearts we really know we need to change. But it is very convenient, and easy, to convince ourselves otherwise. All the data are aimed at convincing us otherwise, and we are afraid that if we make changes our lives will get less comfortable. But I do not think that is true. I think our lives will get much better, in different ways. So perhaps what needs to happen is that we open our hearts a lot wider, and listen to what they tell us.
SI: Do you see any evidence of the structures of empire beginning to crumble?
JP: Yes, I see tremendous evidence that this empire is developing huge cracks. In 1997, the ‘Asian tigers’ went through an economic collapse which had a lot to do with IMF and World Bank policies, and today they are sidling up to China and Japan, and even Korea. There is a new Asian alliance that seems to be forming that is in a way opposing us. We are also seeing this in South America. In the most recent six elections there, in Chile, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Venezuela and Ecuador, all of these countries elected leaders who ran on platforms that opposed the empire, essentially.
Even in what used to be, during the Cold War, a very strong Atlantic Alliance, we are seeing huge fissures. The most obvious is how the French are relating to us, but the Germans also are really standing up to us. And the European Union and the emergence of the Euro are all signs that the empire is cracking.
Across the world we are seeing very strong social movements. I have just come back from the World Social Forum in Porto Alegre, Brazil. It was an amazing gathering of 155,000 people, all of whom are very disturbed about the empire. Within the US, we are seeing a breakdown in the economy. There are tremendous cracks in the system, all of which indicate that the empire is beginning to collapse. This is exactly why the people in the corporatocracy are taking very strong, macho stances.
SI: Would you say that a Marshall Plan for the poorest parts of the world would be a good way to begin reversing our destructive path?
JP: The Marshall Plan, the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank, all of these hold the seeds to the possibility of a real change a bright future, if you want to call it that. We have all the systems in place to reach out to the world with compassion, and to solve the world’s biggest problems. Twenty-four thousand people die every day of starvation, 30,000 children die from lack of medicines. It is needless. Their families and people around them are very angry, and they know that it is happening, not just because of the failure of the system to take care of these problems, but also because we promulgate the kind of conditions in those countries that create the problems. But these banks, and in fact our biggest corporations, could solve them.
Imagine if the American people were to step forward and insist that Coca Cola, Nike and McDonalds guarantee that no one in the world would ever go without sufficient water, clothes or food. These organizations could do this. They have the resources available. If they made that commitment, then all of their competitors would have to make the same commitment.
This empire we have created has a unique aspect. It has been created primarily by a country that has very high ideals and moral standards, and compassionate people who believe in government of the people, for the people, and by the people. They believe that everybody has the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That is written in our most sacred documents. But instead, we have gotten government of the corporations, by the corporations, and for the corporations. We have created these systems that reach to every remote corner of the planet, but I think therein lies the hope. A Marshall Plan for the whole world, or using the World Bank or the IMF to reach out to the whole world, these are very distinct possibilities. That may ultimately be the outcome of 9/11. Perhaps it is going to take us a few years, but we will come around to understanding that we really need now to set our hearts and souls and minds to solving these kinds of problems.
SI: What compelled you to write the book?
JP: After September 11, I went to Ground Zero and stood there and looked at that terrible devastation. I knew then that despite all the vows I had taken not to tell the story, I had to. I had to do it for many reasons, but one of the most compelling was my daughter, who is now 22. The only way I can make a better world for her is by focusing on making the world a better place doing away with the root causes of the anger and hatred and suffering that exist around the world. Security guards in airports and armies are not going to make us safer. The only thing that is going to make us safer is when we truly help everybody around the world join together and be able to realize true love, prosperity and peace.
John Perkins, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man. Berrett-Koehler Publishers, San Francisco, 2004.
Globalization in an ethical and social vacuum
Summary of an article by Patricia Pitchon.
A detailed and wide-ranging analysis of political alienation against a backdrop of growing lack of access to and control over transnationals, corporations and large institutions.
Corporations are taking over utilities and promoting the privatization of such fundamental services as water. Ms Pitchon advocates the reform of corporations: “Politicians need to undertake robust reforms to bring about a better balance between the people of the world and the essentially profit-making interests of corporations. They have little to fear, for the people will support them.”
She also highlights the injustice inherent in so-called free-trade regulations which certainly do not favour developing countries. Ms Pitchon calls this an issue of domination and draws the conclusion that the way trade is skewed at present is tantamount to a “war by other means a ‘commercial way’ of reconstituting colonies”.
Organizations such as the WTO and the IMF are criticised, as well as US trade policy, the international economic system and the debt burden, and the currently topical question of debt repayment is discussed.
She refers to the International Labour Organization report A Fair Globalization, The Role of the ILO, and quotes: “Globalization has developed in an ethical vacuum, where market success and failure have tended to become the ultimate standard of behaviour, and where the attitude of ‘the winner takes all’ weakens the fabric of communities and societies”.
Corruption robs countries of their potential
Summary of an interview with Professor Dr Peter Eigen
(see photo) by Andrea Bistrich, about the cost of corruption to individuals, communities and countries.
Corruption is rampant in 60 countries, and the public sector is plagued by bribery, says Berlin-based Transparency International (TI), which recently launched its annual Corruption Perceptions Index 2004. Professor Dr Peter Eigen is Chairman and founder of Transparency International.
Share International: Transparency International is developing ways to measure and monitor corruption and bribery throughout the world.
Peter Eigen: Transparency International (TI) is an international non-governmental organization devoted to combating corruption. We bring together civil society, business and governments in a global coalition. We work at both the national and international level to try to curb the supply and demand of corruption. Internationally, TI raises awareness about the damaging effects of corruption, we advocate policy reform, work towards the implementation of multilateral conventions and then we follow up by monitoring compliance by governments, corporations and banks.”
And I see the women bringing about the beginning of this necessary change. But we need more. Progressive groups like ours in Israel need a completely different sort of intervention or involvement from the American one. We need a European partnership. We need to educate public awareness. We need the rest of the world to be involved!
10,000 preventable infant deaths each day
A campaign in the
medical journal The Lancet is calling for action to save mothers and their babies who are at risk in the poorest developing countries. Around 10,000 babies under a month old die every day (4 million a year) and most could be saved with simple treatments costing around $1 each, according to medical researchers. This number of deaths is equivalent to the total number of babies born in western Europe every year. Two-thirds of the deaths occur in 10 countries
, Democratic Republic of Congo,
Most die from infections (36 per cent), premature birth (28 per cent) and asphyxia (23 per cent). Tetanus, which kills a million babies a year, is almost unseen in babies in the developed world. Nearly 3 million of the deaths could be prevented by interventions such as tetanus vaccinations for pregnant women, the promotion of cleanliness at birth, prompt and exclusive breastfeeding, extra care for low-weight babies and antibiotics for babies who pick up infections.
Many of the low birthweight babies could be saved simply by keeping the babies warm and fed, but more than half of women in Africa and south
do not have a midwife to avoid complications and give advice.
The Lancet editor Richard Horton writes: “If we continue to fail children under threat, we will be delivering a verdict of wanton inhumanity against ourselves. We will be a knowing party to an entirely preventable mass destruction of human life. The weapon that will be wielded in this crime will not be a bomb, a biological agent or an aeroplane. It will be something more sinister withdrawal from the universe of human reason and compassion into a national solipsism that degrades the values that we claim to revere.”
(Source: The Guardian,
Counting the cost
“Throughout the world there are men, women and little children who have not even the essentials to stay alive; they crowd the cities of many of the poorest countries in the world. This crime fills Me with shame. My brothers, how can you watch these people die before your eyes and call yourselves men? My Plan is to save these, My little ones, from certain starvation and needless death. My Plan is to show you that the way out of your problems is to listen again to the true voice of God within your hearts, to share the produce of this most bountiful of worlds among your brothers and sisters everywhere.” Maitreya, from Message No 11
Benjamin Creme’s Master confirms that in the month of February (2005) 650,000 people died needlessly from hunger and poverty.
Thousands died in
yesterday, says New York Times
After the tsunami which shocked the world into a new sense of unity, more and more people are advocating the idea of sharing. Calls for economic and social justice are being heard around the globe.
The latest example is an editorial published in the The New York Times, “Thousands Died in Africa Yesterday”. The article commends the generosity of the developed world in response to the tsunami, but criticizes the world’s lack of generosity towards
, “where hundreds of thousands of poor men, women and children die needlessly each year from preventable diseases, or unnatural disasters like civil wars.”
The newspaper cites Africa’s most troubled regions, including Somalia, Sudan, Congo, Zimbabwe, Ivory Coast, Liberia and Sierra Leone as a challenge not only to our common humanity, but to global security as well. “The lethal combination of corrupt or destructive leaders, porous and unmonitored borders and rootless or hopeless young men has made some of these regions incubators of international terrorism and contagious diseases like AIDS. Others are sanctuaries for swindlers and drug-traffickers whose victims can be found throughout the world.
“In many of these places, poverty and unemployment and the desperation they spawn leave young men vulnerable to the lure of terrorist organizations, which, beyond offering two meals a day, also provide a target to vent their anger at rich societies, which they are led to believe view them with condescension and treat them with contempt. Training camps for Islamic extremists are now thought to be sprouting like anthills on the savanna.”
The editorial notes that the
has failed to acknowledge some of the underlying causes of global instability. It points to annual
military spending of $400 billion, another $100 billion for military operations in
, and compares that to a budget of only $16 billion in international assistance directed toward the world’s poorest people.
“For decades,” The New York Times writes, “most Americans either have preferred not to hear about these problems, or, blanching at the scope of the human tragedy, have thrown up their hands. But in terms of the kind of money the West thinks nothing of spending, on such things as sports and entertainment extravaganzas, not to speak of defense budgets, meeting many of
’s most urgent needs seems shockingly affordable. What has been missing is the political will.”
This year  presents a unique opportunity to mobilize the needed political will, according to the editorial. “Prime Minister Tony Blair of
’s presidency of the Group of 8 industrial nations this year on tackling poverty in
. Blair wants his ally, Mr Bush, to stand beside him at the coming G-8 summit meeting at Gleneagles in
this July. After the G-8 meeting there will be a United Nations summit meeting in
in September, where the world’s leaders will examine progress made toward reaching the Millennium Development Goals of cutting global poverty in half by 2015.
“Chief among those goals was that developed countries like
would work toward giving 0.7 per cent of their national incomes for development aid for poor countries. If the progress made so far is any guide, it is going to be a short meeting. While
is about halfway to the goal, at 0.34 per cent, and
is at 0.41 per cent,
remains near rock-bottom, at 0.18 per cent.”
“In the next few months, Mr Bush could take a giant step towards altering the way the world views
by joining Mr Blair in pushing for more help in
. It’s past time; the continent is dying. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, which is anything but, some 1,000 people die every day of preventable diseases like malaria and diarrhea. That’s the equivalent of a tsunami every five months, in that one country alone. Throughout the continent of
, thousands of people die needlessly every day from diseases like AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
“One hundred years ago, before we had the medical know-how to eradicate these illnesses, this might have been acceptable. But we are the first generation able to afford to end poverty and the diseases it spawns. It’s past time we step up to the plate. We are all responsible for choosing to view the tsunami victims in Southeast Asia as more deserving of our help than the malaria victims in
. Jeffrey Sachs, the economist who heads the United Nations’ Millennium Development Project to end global poverty, rightly takes issue with the press in his book The End of Poverty: “Every morning,” Mr Sachs writes, “our newspapers could report, ‘More than 20,000 people perished yesterday of extreme poverty.’”
“So, on this page, we’d like to make a first step,” concludes The New York Times. “Yesterday, more than 20,000 people perished of extreme poverty.” (Source:
New York Times
“World people power”
Mary Robinson, director of Ethical Globalization Initiative, highlighted “the stark realities of poverty” in an interview on BBC Radio 4’s PM Programme. Speaking in
in March 2005, the former President of Ireland and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said: “Poverty is the greatest deprivation of human rights. You have no rights and you have no dignity. When you are living day to day, you’re worried about where the next meal will come from, where will I get medicines for a dying child? And these are the realities that an African Commission has to make positive changes to.
“... during 2005 we’re going to see ‘world people power’, and politicians do listen.... I think millions of people worldwide will be saying: ‘Enough is enough.’ The tsunami affected because it seemed biblical rich and poor. Somehow this has to be a political tsunami year, in which we change.” (Source: BBC
Chancellor calls for G8 protest
The UK Chancellor of the Exchequer has called for thousands of protesters to lobby the next G8 conference to demand justice for the world’s poor.
Speaking at the Scottish Labour conference on 6 March 2005, Gordon Brown
(see photo) already known for his commitment to debt-cancellation for developing countries said that the harrowing stories and sights he had encountered during a recent trip to
had given “a new urgency” to his determination to improve the lives of those struggling for survival.
Calling on people to take to the streets of Edinburgh in July 2005 in support of the world’s poor, he said: “I want us to work together to propose at Gleneagles the boldest anti-poverty plan, a $50 billion plan to tackle global poverty and to call on countries to join us to set as we have already set a timetable for 0.7 per cent of our national income to be paid to the poorest countries in development aid.”
The G8 is scheduled to meet on 5-6 July, at the Gleneagles golf course in
; anti-poverty organization Make Poverty History expects to attract 200,000 to their 2 July
“It is because we are all brothers and sisters that I ask you to persuade thousands of people to gather with the churches, the faith groups, the trade unions and the NGOs in Edinburgh, just before the world leaders meet in Gleneagles,” said Mr Brown, calling for people to march to “tell them of the suffering we can no longer allow to happen”. (Source: Metro, The Courier,
People power in
The killing of Robert McCartney in a pub brawl in
, in January 2005 has led to a remarkable exhibition of people power against the paramilitaries who perpetrated the attack and then sought to silence witnesses and clean up the bar of forensic evidence. The £26 million bank robbery in December 2004, which police believe to have been the work of the IRA, had already fuelled public anger against the continued criminality of the organization.
However, for a Republican community, which in the past relied on the IRA for protection, to denounce the men of violence was unprecedented. The five courageous sisters of the murdered man (who are Sinn Fein voters) have been joined by hundreds of local people in continued demonstrations in the staunchly Catholic Short Strand area of Belfast.
The McCartney’s campaign for justice forced the IRA to expel three of its members and Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams to suspend seven party members and hand their names to the police ombudsman, (and, therefore, to the police, the Republicans’ traditional enemy). Adams spoke out strongly at the Party Conference in
in March 2005 against the murderers, but Sinn Fein (originally slow to react, but becoming increasingly concerned by the drop in popularity of the party) remains under pressure to distance itself further from the IRA’s acts of crime and intimidation. (Source: The Independent,
Iraqis march against terrorism
Thousands of Iraqis have risked their own personal safety to demonstrate against terrorism after a suicide bombing killed 125 people in
The 28 February 2005 massacre was targeted at police and army recruits queuing for medical certificates at a clinic, but killed many more civilians in the market immediately opposite. Responsibility for the attack was claimed by
’s most feared terrorist, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who claims his group is affiliated with al-Qaida.
Despite fears that another suicide bomber could be in their midst, the huge crowd of demonstrators gathered outside the clinic on 1 March to protest against members of Sadam Hussein’s Ba’ath party, against foreign fighters who support al-Qaida and practise the strict Wahhabi form of Islam associated with Saudi Arabia and to demand the resignation of interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi. ‘’No to Ba’athism and Wahhabism!’’ they shouted. “No to terrorism!”
Iraqis have continually mounted demonstrations since the invasion, risking attack not just by foreign terrorists, but also by the
military, who have shot and killed scores of Iraqi protesters since the invasion of February 2002. (Source: Associated Press,
Global ‘people power’ week
Millions of people and thousands of campaigns and organizations across the world will take part in a ‘Global Week of Action’ in April 2005. Between 10-16 April, a multitude of events and demonstrations are planned in a huge show of people power calling for change and a commitment to solving the problems and inequities of the world. Subtitled ‘Setting the peoples’ agenda’, it is not led by one group or committee, but is a chance for existing networks, campaigns and individuals to join together in action.
The idea for the Global Week of Action came in November 2003, when over 100 trade activists from 50 countries participated in the International Trade Conference in Delhi, India, which issued the global call to a Week of Action. This idea was then presented to a seminar of 500 people at the World Social Forum in
, in January 2004. Since then groups across the world have been organizing for this year’s event.
The aims of the week are to target the governments of the rich nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organisation and the World Bank in asking for an end to the pushing of free trade and privatization on the poor, and the creation of a new economic system which has at its heart the needs of the poorest members of the world community. Participants will be demanding from their leaders “everyone’s right to food, a livelihood, water, health and education”.
Events planned for the week include a demonstration, public concert and petition to government to take agriculture into account in Kinshasa, Congo; a ‘People’s lobby of parliament’ in Norway, with buses taking people to the capital, Oslo: and a ‘Student Week of Action’ and a FairTrade panel in the USA.
will see a nationwide ‘vote for justice’ and a mass event in Dhaka, while
will host a LiveAid-style concert to celebrate its anniversary. Lectures, seminars, marches, letter-writing campaigns and local events will take place in most of the countries already signed up to the week, which many involved see as a precursor to the ‘official’ events of 2005, starting with the G8 summit in Scotland in July expected to draw thousands of demonstrators calling for positive action.