The Bilderberg Group
or Bilderberg conference is an unofficial annual invitation-only conference
of around 130 guests, most of whom are persons of influence
in the fields of business
, and politics
The elite group meets annually at exclusive, four or five-star resorts throughout the world, normally in Europe, once every four years in the United States or Canada. It has an office in Leiden, South Holland, Netherlands.
The Bilderberg Group
met at the Trianon Palace Hotel
, near Paris, France
over the course of three days; May 15
- 18 May
. Famous attendees included:
- David Rockefeller; the last surviving grandson and heir to John D. Rockefeller's fortune, David founded the Trilateral Commission, is a member of both the Bilderberg Group and the Council on Foreign Relations as well as being a world statesman, banker and philanthropist. Some believe him to be central to New World Order conspiracies, and others claim his philanthropy is only a way to avoid taxes. He is known to have attended the conferences since 1954, having been invited as one of an original group of Americans to attend the inaugural meeting by Prince Bernhard.
- Carlos M. Collazo; Founder and Chairman of the Marsys Group. Creator of the original United Nations Harmonized Code, several technologies, global entrepreneur and advisor to several U.S. administrations on international trade intelligence. He attended conferences since 2002.
- Henry Kissinger; A statesman who had been in politics during the Vietnam War, noted for requesting the use of nuclear weapons against the Vietminh and subsequently winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Kissinger is thought to have attended every conference since 1988.
- Martin Taylor, a British chief executive. He attended conferences every year from 1993, with the exception of 2002.
- Paul Wolfowitz; a neo-conservative designer of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, having been calling for a pre-emptive strike in Iraq from the neo-conservative think tanks since 1993. He only recently came into the lime-light during and after the 2003 invasion of Iraq. He also attended conferences during 1994-98, 2000, and 2005.
- Conrad Black, Canadian newspaper magnate. Black attended every meeting from 1988 until 2003, but has not attended since.
- Richard Perle; A neo-conservative think-tank fellow, nick-named the 'Prince of Darkness' of the 'beltway.' Perle has attended every conference since 2001.
- Kenneth Clarke, former British cabinet minister. He attended conferences in 1993, 1998 - 2000, and 2003 to 2004.
- Mario Draghi, appointed to head the Bank of Italy as of 2006. Draghi attended the conferences during 1994-95 and during 2001 to 2004.
- Ed Balls, economic adviser to the British Chancellor. Balls attended Bilderberg from 2001 until 2003.
- Mervyn Allister King; he became Governor of the Bank of England the month following the meeting. This is believed to be King's only Bilderberg attendance.
- Chuck Hagel; Republican congressman. Attended the conference between 1999 and 2001.
- Donald Rumsfeld; The controversial Secretary of Defense under George W. Bush. Rumsfeld attended the conference in 2002.
- Colin Powell; Colin Powell is the outgoing Secretary of State for the first term of George W. Bush's presidency. He is reported to be at odds with other cabinet members, especially Donald Rumsfeld because of disagreements regarding military strategy. (See the Powell Doctrine and the Rumsfeld Doctrine.) Powell attended the conference in 1997.
- Dick Cheney; The vice president of the United States under George W. Bush. Cheney is a neo-conservative and has been criticised for his connections to Halliburton.
- Stephen Harper: current Prime Minister of Canada; former Canadian Alliance leader and future Conservative Prime Minister of Canada.
Issues reportedely addressed at the meeting were globalization, regionalism, Iraq and post-war Iraq, and the usual trade agreement dialogue.
Alphabetic list of attendees
Nationality and occupation of the attendees are given as they were sourced from the press release, which leaked to investigators of the Bilderberg Group.
- Ali Babacan, Ali, Minister of Economic Affairs, Turkey
- Dora Bakoyannis, Mayor of Athens, Greece
- Edward Balls, Chief Economic Advisor to the Treasury, UK
- Francisco Pinto Balsemão, Professor of Communication Science, New University, Lisbon; Chairman and CEO, Impresa, S.G.P.S.; Former Prime Minister, Portugal
- José M. Durão Barroso, Prime Minister, Portugal
- Mehmet A. Bayar, Deputy Chairman of DYP (True Path Party), Turkey
- Erich Becker, Chairman of the Managing Board and CEO, VA Technologie AG, Austria
- Rodolfo de Bendetti, Managing Director CIR S.p.A., Italy
- Franco Bernabè, Chairman Franco Bernabe & C. S.p.A., Italy
- Nicolas Beytout, Editor-in-Chief, Les Echos, France
- Ahmad E. Bishara, Secretary General of Kuwait's liberal National Democratic Party, Kuwait
- Conrad M. Black, Chairman, Telegraph Group Limited, Canada
- Frits Bolkestein, Internal Markets Commissioner, European Commission, International
- John R. Bolton, Under-Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, USA
- Michel Bon, Honorary Chairman, France Telecom, France
- Jean-Louis Bruguière, - First Vice President, Justice Department, France
- Hubert Burda, Publisher and CEO, Hubert Burda Media Holding GmbH & Co., Germany
- Phillipe Camus, CEO, European Aeronautics Defence and Space company (EADS) , France
- Anthony J. Cary, Head of Christopher Patten's cabinet, EU, International
- Henri de Castries, Chairman of the Board, AXA, France
- Juan Luis Cebrián, CEO, PRISA, Spain
- Willy Claes, Minister of State, Belgium
- Kenneth Clarke, Member of Parliament, [former Chancellor of the Exchequer], UK
- Timothy C. Collins, Senior Managing Director and CEO, Ripplewood Holdings LLC, USA
- Bertrand Collomb, Chairman and CEO, Lafarge, France
- Jean-François Copé, Secretary of State in charge of relations with Parliament; Government Spokesman, France
- Jon S. Corzine, Senator (D, New Jersey), USA
- Claes Dahlbäck, Chairman, Investor AB, Sweden
- George A. David, Chairman of the Board, Coca-Cola HBC SA, Greece
- (Honorary Chairman) Etienne Davignon, Vice-Chairman, Societe General, Belgium
- Thomas E. Donilon, Executive Vice President, Fannie Mae, USA
- Mario Draghi, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Goldman Sachs International
- Jean-Luis Gergorin, Executive Vice President, Strategic Coordination, European Aeronautics Defence and Space company (EADS), France
- Paul A. Gigot, Editorial page editor, The Wall Street Journal, USA
- Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, French President 1974-81; Chairman of the Convention on the Future of Europe, France
- Svein Gjedrem, Governor, Central Bank of Norway, Norway
- Dermot Gleeson, Chairman designate, Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c., Ireland
- Philip Gould, Public Relations Adviser to Prime Minister Blair, UK
- Richard N. Haass, Director, Office of Policy Planning Staff, State Department, USA
- Victor Halberstadt, Professor of Economics, Leiden University; Former honorary Secretary General of Bilderberg Meetings, Netherlands
- Stephen Harper, current Prime Minister of Canada.
- Roger Hertog, Vice-Chairman, Alliance Capital Management, USA
- Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Netherlands
- Allan B. Hubbard, President, E&A Industries, USA
- R. Glenn Hubbard, Russell L. Carson Professor of Economics and Finance, Columbia University, USA
- Walter B. Kielholz, Former Chairman of the Board, Credit Suisse; Executive Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, Swiss Re, Switzerland
- Mervyn A. King, Deputy Governor, Bank of England, UK
- Henry A. Kissinger, Chairman, Kissinger Associates, Inc.; Member, Defense Policy Board; Member J.P. Morgan International Council, USA
- Olli Kivinen, Senior Editor & Columnist, Helsingin Sanomat, Finland
- Wim Kok, Former Prime Minister, Netherlands
- Hilmar Kopper, Former Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Deutsche Bank AG, Germany
- Henry R. Kravis, Founding Partner, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., USA
- Marie-Joseé Kravis, Senior Fellow, Hudson Institute, Inc., USA
- Pascal Lamy, Trade Commissioner, European Commission, International
- Pierre Lellouche, Vice Chairman, NATO Parliamentary Assembly, France
- André Lévy-Lang, Former Chairman, Paribas, France
- Anna Lindh, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sweden
- Paavo Lipponen, Former Prime Minister; Speaker of the Parliament, Finland
- Mogens Lykketoft, Chairman, Social Democrat Party, Denmark
- Margaret O. MacMillan, Provost, Trinity College, University of Toronto, Canada
- Mikhail Margelov, Chairman, Committee for Foreign Affairs, Federation Council of Russia, Russia
- (Rapporteur) R. John Micklethwait, United States Editor, The Economist, UK
- Thierry de Montbrial, President, French Institute of International Relations (IFRI), France
- Mario Monti, Competition Commissioner, European Commission, International
- Craig J. Mundie, Chief Technical Officer, Advanced Strategies and Policy, Microsoft Corporation, USA
- Egil Myklebust, Chairman, Norsk Hydro ASA, Norway
- Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa, Member of the Executive Board, European Central Bank, International
- Marco Panara, Journalist, La Repubblica, Italy
- Corrado Passera, Managing Director, Banca Intesa BCI, Italy
- George Perkovich, Vice President for Studies, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, USA
- Richard N. Perle, Member, Defense Policy Board; Resident Fellow, American Enterprise Institute (AEI) for Public Policy Research; member Project for a New American Century (PNAC), USA
- H.R.H. Prince Philippe, Crown Prince of Belgium
- Roberto Poli, Chairman, Eni S.p.A., Italy
- (Rapporteur) Gideon Rachman, Brussels Correspondent, The Economist, UK
- Denis Ranque, Chairman and CEO, Thales Aerospace and Defence, France
- Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Prime Minister, Denmark
- Heather Reisman, President and CEO, Indigo Books & Music Inc., Canada
- Franck Riboud, Chairman and CEO, Danone Foods, France
- Michael Ringier, CEO, Ringier AG, Switzerland
- David Rockefeller, Member, J.P. Morgan International Council, USA
- Eduardo Ferro Rodrigues, Leader of the Socialist Party; Member of Parliament, Portugal
- Matias Rodriguez Inciarte, Executive Vice Chairman, Banco Santander Central Hispano, Spain
- Olivier Roy, Senior Researcher, CNRS, France
- John Ruggie, Director, Center for Business and Government, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, USA
- Anthony Ruys, Chairman of the Board, Heineken N.V., Netherlands
- Özdem Sanberk, Director, Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation, Turkey
- Paolo Scaroni, Managing Director, Enel S.p.A., Italy
- Wolfgang Schäuble, Deputy Parliamentary Leader, CDU/CSU Group, Germany
- Otto Schily, Minister of the Interior, Germany
- Rudolf Scholten, Member of the Board of Executive Directors, Österreichische Kontrollbank AG, Austria
- Jürgen E. Schrempp, Chairman of the Board of Management, Daimler Chrysler AG, Germany
- Klaus Schwab, President, World Economic Forum, International
- Tøger Seidenfaden, Editor in Chief, Politiken, Denmark
- Lilia Shevtsova, Senior Associate, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Russia
- H.M. the Queen of Spain [King Juan Carlos arrived with the queen, but he is not on this list]
- James B. Steinberg, Vice President and Director, Foreign Policy Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, USA
- Mark Steyn, Journalist for various publications, Canada
- Peter D. Sutherland, Chairman and Managing Director, Goldman Sachs International; Chairman, BP Amoco, Ireland
- (Honorary Secretary General) J Martin Taylor, Chairman WH Smith PLC; International advisor, Goldman Sachs International, USA
- John L. Thornton, President and CEO, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., USA
- Jean Claude Trichet, Governor, Banque de France, France
- Loukas Tsoukalis, Professor, University of Athens; President Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy, Greece
- Gertrude Trumpel-Gugerell, Vice Governor, Central Bank of Austria, Austria
- Daniel L. Vasella, Chairman and CEO, Novartis AG, Switzerland
- Jeroen van der Veer, President, Royal Dutch Petroleum Company; Vice Chairman of the Committee of Managing Directors of Royal Dutch Shell Group of Companies, Netherlands
- Philippe Villin, Vice Chairman, Lehman Brothers Europe, France
- Klaas de Vries, Member of Parliament (Labour); Former Minister of the Interior, Netherlands
- Björn Whalroos, President and CEO, Sampo plc., Finland
- Jacob Wallenberg, Chairman of the Board, Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken, Sweden
- Gareth Williams, Leader of the House of Lords, UK
- Martin H. Wolf, Associate Editor/Economics Commentator, The Financial Times, UK
- James D. Wolfensohn, President, The World Bank, International
- Paul Wolfowitz, Deputy Secretary of Defense, US Department of Defense, USA