Mr Redwood’s contribution to the statement on the Bilderberg Conference, 10 June

Mr John Redwood (Wokingham) (Con): As many UKIP voters fear that the Bilderberg group is a plot to promote more unaccountable European government, can my right hon. and learned Friend give them any reassurance or suggest why they might be wrong in that thought?

The Minister without Portfolio (Mr Kenneth Clarke): Nowadays we get accused of plots to establish a Government of the world, to poison the local watercourses, and to plan an invasion of the United States of America. Ten years ago, I was told I was attending a plot to hand over Britain to Brussels and to subordinate us to a “United States of Europe”, and the next instalment of the plot will come later. I cite that example in order to point out that a fellow member of the steering committee was Mr Conrad Black, and in private, as in public, Mr Conrad Black was not in favour of handing anything over to Brussels and was not in any way furthering that cause. I regret to say that Mr Black is, as I recall, the only member who ever attended who has since had the misfortune to be sentenced to a term of imprisonment, whereupon he withdrew from the Bilderberg meetings.

Seriously, however, I assure my right hon. Friend that the full range of opinion from left to right from across western Europe is pretty well represented at Bilderberg. That in itself shows that the idea that we are furthering any kind of agenda is absolute nonsense. If I were plotting to do anything, I would not assemble that particular group of people, because we would never agree on an objective.

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3 Comments

  1. Sue Jameson
    Posted June 11, 2013 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    If they were “plotting” in secret, we certainly wouldn’t know about it. I think everybody (not just UKIP) are just sick and tired of a government (and EU) which constantly go on about transparency and then go and do the opposite.

    “I was told I was attending a plot to hand over Britain to Brussels and to subordinate us to a “United States of Europe” – Unfortunately, he was probably quite right there and he continues to preach a pro-EU stance even though most of us would actually like to leave.

    The trouble is, he and the others just preach the same old garbage and most of those myths have now been dispelled. Even Cameron prattling on about “the top table”…

    He asserts that part of his international ambitions for the UK “is our place at the top table. At the UN. The Commonwealth. NATO. The WTO. The G8. The G20 and yes – the EU.
    Infact, membership of the EU gives us access to the “top tables” of EU institutions, but that very fact excludes us from the WTO top table. We can sit at one, or the other, but not both and the way the EU is conducting business with China at the moment, leaves much to be desired and I shan’t even mention the CIVITAS report on the failure of the EU-USA trade agreements (suffice it to say, CIVITAS think it will NEVER HAPPEN). So, we are stuck, not able to make deals of our own.

    When it comes to the UN – and its many subsidiary bodies – even where the EU is not directly represented as of right (and in an increasing number of cases it is), we agree to be bound by a pre-agreed “common position” and do not represent our own national interests.

    But increasingly, we are not even represented on international bodies. When it comes to the World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations, we have no direct membership and our interests are represented exclusively by the European Commission.

    On the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission, which jointly manages the fisheries in the region, the UK interest is represented by the European Commission, and we are not even parties to the enabling treaty, the EU having taken over our seat.

    In many instances we have conceded our “TOP SEAT at the table” to the EU, as we can’t have both.

    It’s extremely disingenuous of the upper echelons to keep treating us like idiots, especially Cameron. If I can see the reality, why can’t Cameron? Is the man dense? After all, all you have to do is read the internet, the truth is out here if you look hard enough.

  2. Normandee
    Posted June 11, 2013 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Not sure I would want my freedom or anything else to depend on the word of Mr Clarke, he is from the same stable of dissemblers as Ted Heath. The truth is flexible to suit your needs, tell them what you need to achieve your aims.

  3. James A. Hutchinson
    Posted June 12, 2013 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    I totally agree with all that Sue Jameson has written . She is spot on in all her comments . The Conservative party as it currently stands , do not represent the views or the wishes of TRUE Conservatives . Cameron is a closet Liberal and we all know their attitude to the EU . etc

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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