Category Archives: 2018

Henri de Castries on Macron

Henri de Castries, who is Vice-Chairman of Nestlé and the Chairman of Bilderberg’s Steering Committee, has spoken about Emmanual Macron’s first year in office.

In a report produced by the influential French think-tank the Institut Montaigne, of which he is the President, Henri de Castries declares that Macron has had “a strong start”, and that with Macron at its helm, “France is back on the international arena”.

“It’s good to have for the first time in years, a French president able to articulate a very deep and very structured European vision.”

In a further statement from the report, the Institut Montaigne says:

“The President’s pro-European agenda and his firmness on the aforementioned subjects, which both contrast strongly with the political instability prevailing elsewhere in Europe, have been unambiguous.”

Contributors to this report include the lawyer Nicolas Baverez, who is a director of the Institut Montaigne and a regular at Bilderberg (until recently he was on the group’s steering committee), and the CEO of the institute, Laurent Bigorgne, who attended the Bilderberg conference in 2015.

The relationship between Macron’s party En Marche, the Institut Montaigne and Bilderberg has always been intimate. At the very beginning of Macron’s rise to power,  En Marche was using Laurent Bigorgne’s private house as a contact address and his partner (Véronique Bolhuis) as a contact.

And Emmanuel Macron himself, a few years before becoming President, attended the 2014 Bilderberg conference in Copenhagen, back when he was Deputy Secretary General of the Presidency. Also attending that year were Nicolas Baverez and Monsieur de Castries.

It is also worth noting that among the Institut Montaigne’s impressive roster of Special Advisors, you can a number of Bilderberg conference alumni, including: Jean-Dominique Senard (2012, & ’13); Patrick Calvar (2015) and Dominique Moïsi (1999 & 2002).

Senard, who is the Vice-President and CEO of Michelin, also sits on the board of directors of the Institut Montaigne. Here is Senard, in January 2018, welcoming his young President to the Michelin factory:

Historical note: the Institut Montaigne was founded in 2000 by Claude Bébéar, the head of insurance and finance giant AXA. This was the year that Henri de Castries, Bébéar’s protégé at AXA, took over the management of the company.

In 2015, in a similar passing of the baton, Henri de Castries took over from his mentor Bébéar as president the Institut Montaigne.

Bébéar was a supporter of Macron in the French presidential election. He said that it was the first time ever that he’d revealed his political leanings, and praised Macron for his pro-European vision.

One last thing: Claude Bébéar is also a Bilderberg alumnus. He attended the 1995 conference in Zurich. The ties between Bilderberg, AXA, the Institut Montaigne and Macron run deep.

Bilderberg & Brookings

One of the oldest and most influential think tanks is the Washington-based Brookings Institution, a “public policy organization” which is committed, in its own words, to finding “practical solutions to the most vexing policy challenges facing society”. And over the decades, the Brookings Institution and its fellow elite policy group, Bilderberg, have become closely intertwined.

The 2017 Bilderberg conference in Chantilly was attended by Leon Wieseltier, a senior fellow at Brookings, and two members of the Brookings Institution’s current board of trustees: the head of Deutsche Bank, Paul Achleitner, and the head of Lazard, Kenneth M. Jacobs. It is the job of the the trustees to ensure the “scholarly independence” of Brookings.

Besides being Brookings trustees and running banks, Jacobs and Achleitner are also members of the inner circle of Bilderberg: the group’s steering committee.

Over the years, a considerable number of Bilderberg steering committee members have also been trustees of Brookings, including Klaus Kleinfeld, James Wolfensohn, Thomas Donilon, Vernon Jordan, Jessica T. Mathews and James A. Johnson (who was chairman of the Brookings board of trustees).

James A. Johnson, who is a director of Goldman Sachs, is also on the advisory board of the Hamilton Project: an economic policy unit at Brookings. Other advisors to the Hamilton Project include Bilderberg steering committee member Eric Schmidt (the former Executive Chairman of Google) and longtime Bilderberg attendees Lawrence Summers, Robert Rubin and Timothy Geithner.

Another policy unit within Brookings is the John L. Thornton China Center, which is run by two-time Bilderberg attendee Cheng Li (2012 & 2014). The Center is named after the former Goldman Sachs CEO John L. Thornton, who was named chairman of the board of trustees at Brookings in 2003 and attended Bilderberg 9 times from 1999 to 2014.

The International Advisory Council of Brookings includes the Swedish billionaire Marcus Wallenberg, who sits on Bilderberg’s steering committee, and also Royal Dutch Shell, which has been one of the most important corporations at Bilderberg since its founding.

In the early 1980s, the then president of Brookings, Bruce K. MacLaury, was a regular attendee at Bilderberg, and also sat on the group’s steering committee. And the current president of Brookings, John R. Allen, attended the Bilderberg conference in 2015, back when he was a special presidential envoy for the State Department.

The Bilderberg conference and Brookings are both best understood as part of a much wider matrix of elite political and economic influence, which includes governmental advisory groups, think tanks, policy institutes and corporate lobby groups. These would include such groups as the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Trilateral Commission, the Ford Foundation, the Aspen Institute, the Ditchley Foundation, the Council on Foreign Relations and the European Round Table of Industrialists.