Tony Blair Lobbied for JP Morgan in Libya

Telegraph
September 18, 2011

A senior executive with the Libyan Investment Authority, the $70 billion fund used to invest the country’s oil money abroad, said Mr Blair was one of three prominent western businessmen who regularly dealt with Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, son of the former leader.

Saif al-Islam and his close aides oversaw the activities of the fund, and often directed its officials on where they should make its investments, he said.

The executive, speaking on condition of anonymity, said officials were told the “ideas” they were ordered to pursue came from Mr Blair as well as one other British businessman and a former American diplomat.

“Tony Blair’s visits were purely lobby visits for banking deals with JP Morgan,” he said.

He said that unlike some other deals – notably some investments run by the US bank Goldman Sachs – JP Morgan’s had never turned “bad”.

But he added: “Saif and his father played these people like musical chairs. At the end the reputation of the LIA was really damaged because of these interventions.”

Documents found by The Sunday Telegraph published this weekend showed Mr Blair had made at least three visits to Tripoli, twice in the lead-up to the release of the alleged Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali Megrahi in 2008 and 2009 and once last year. On the first two occasions he was flown to the country on planes arranged by Col Gaddafi.

A senior diplomat told The Daily Telegraph last night that the British embassy in Tripoli had arranged transport for Mr Blair and his entourage in Tripoli and ensured that representatives were there to “greet him and see him off” at the airport.

Mr Blair stayed overnight at the ambassador’s official residence in Tripoli and was accompanied by “several” British police officers for protection.

The documents show that among the people he was due to meet in 2009 was Mohammed Layas, head of the LIA.

A spokesman for Mr Blair said that the visits had largely been to discuss Africa, and categorically denied that he had lobbied Said al-Islam on behalf of JP Morgan.

The spokesman said last night: “As we have made clear many times before, Tony Blair has never had any role, either formal or informal, paid or unpaid, with the Libyan Investment Authority or the Government of Libya and he does not and has never had any commercial relationship with any Libyan company or entity.”

Mr Blair began work in January 2008 as a £2million-a-yearn adviser to JP Morgan. Last month, American officials told the New York Post newspaper that the bank managed more than half a billion US dollars on behalf of the LIA.

The executive said that he did not see Mr Blair at the LIA headquarters in the modern Tower of the Revolution overlooking the seafront. He said officials like himself were given their instructions by two senior Saif aides, including Mohammed Ismail, a Libyan with British nationality.

One of the letters arranging the 2008 visit, in which an aide to Mr Blair told the Libyan ambassador to Britain that the former prime minister was “delighted” that “The Leader” was likely to be able to see him, was on notepaper headed “Office of the Quartet Representative”, his formal title as Middle East envoy.

The Quartet he represents is made up of the European Union, the United Nations, Russia and the United States. A spokesman for Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, said: “It’s up to him to explain why he did this.”

The growing closeness of the Blair government to the Gaddafi regime has already come under fire. Abdulhakim Belhadj, former leader the Libyan Islamist Fighting Group and now head of the revolutionary Tripoli Military Council, is demanding an apology after papers showed MI6 arranged for his secret extradition from Malaysia back to Libya in 2004.

Many ordinary Libyans have also expressed surprise at the policy. After the latest revelations, Hoda Abuzeid, a British Libyan whose dissident father was murdered in London in 1995, accused Mr Blair of “selling out”.

“People like Blair and those who had their eyes on the business opportunities that Gaddafi could provide sold out people like my family,” said Miss Abuzeid, who has returned to the country for the first time since 1980.

“When he had tea in the desert with the ‘Brother Leader’ did he ever ask him who killed my father?”

Memos confirm Iraq Invasion was all about Oil

The Independent
April 18, 2011

Plans to exploit Iraq’s oil reserves were discussed by government ministers and the world’s largest oil companies the year before Britain took a leading role in invading Iraq, government documents show.

Iraq’s burgeoning oil industry: Click HERE to upload graphic (160k)

The papers, revealed here for the first time, raise new questions over Britain’s involvement in the war, which had divided Tony Blair’s cabinet and was voted through only after his claims that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.

The minutes of a series of meetings between ministers and senior oil executives are at odds with the public denials of self-interest from oil companies and Western governments at the time.

The documents were not offered as evidence in the ongoing Chilcot Inquiry into the UK’s involvement in the Iraq war. In March 2003, just before Britain went to war, Shell denounced reports that it had held talks with Downing Street about Iraqi oil as “highly inaccurate”. BP denied that it had any “strategic interest” in Iraq, while Tony Blair described “the oil conspiracy theory” as “the most absurd”.

But documents from October and November the previous year paint a very different picture.

Five months before the March 2003 invasion, Baroness Symons, then the Trade Minister, told BP that the Government believed British energy firms should be given a share of Iraq’s enormous oil and gas reserves as a reward for Tony Blair’s military commitment to US plans for regime change.

The papers show that Lady Symons agreed to lobby the Bush administration on BP’s behalf because the oil giant feared it was being “locked out” of deals that Washington was quietly striking with US, French and Russian governments and their energy firms.

Minutes of a meeting with BP, Shell and BG (formerly British Gas) on 31 October 2002 read: “Baroness Symons agreed that it would be difficult to justify British companies losing out in Iraq in that way if the UK had itself been a conspicuous supporter of the US government throughout the crisis.”

The minister then promised to “report back to the companies before Christmas” on her lobbying efforts.

The Foreign Office invited BP in on 6 November 2002 to talk about opportunities in Iraq “post regime change”. Its minutes state: “Iraq is the big oil prospect. BP is desperate to get in there and anxious that political deals should not deny them the opportunity.”

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Russian President: New World Order with new Global Currency

By Luis R. Miranda
The Real Agenda
June 19, 2010

As many other puppet presidents have done it before, Russia’s Dmitri Medvedev is taking his opportunity to call for a new world

Russian President, Dmitri Medvedev

order and to push the Russian currency up, as the new reserve paper.  “What had seemed untouchable has collapsed. The bubbles that created the illusion of flourishing economies have burst,” said the Russian president in St Petersburg.  As he opened Russia’s annual economic forum, Medvedev said the times when western corporations dominated the economy had ended and the new interest in Russia was a sign that the world was changing.

“For Russia this situation is a challenge and an opportunity.  And we should use it to build a modern, flourishing and strong Russia … which will be a co-founder of the new world economic order.” he added.  Talking in front of many businessmen from around the world, the Russia leader followed the steps of other governments and presidents as well as of non-governmental institutions.  In the past, George H.W. Bush, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Barack Obama, among others, have called for the formation of a new world order.  In fact, all those leaders have cited the creation of a centralized global entity as the only way to cure the many illnesses the world suffers from today.

Together with governments, there are supranational institutions such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank and their respective leaders, who have echoed the same calls for the creation of a new global order.  This order would have the power, will amass the resources of the planet and will decide how to use them.  The plan also includes the creation of a single monetary policy to which all countries will have to submit to.  The adherence to such policy will enable the countries to receive loans and aid packages that will make them more dependent on the foreign centralized organization, and less dependent on their own Constitutions and laws.  In fact, in the world seen through the eyes of people like Medvedev and the other power men, there is no need for nationality, sovereignty or identity.

Russia has already taken significant steps to aid the lifeline of the new world order -which has existed for many years now-.  The country will introduce a policy of zero taxation on capital gains which will indeed allow the free flow of monies in and out of, much like it happens in corrupt countries where this policy aides and enables money laundering through the banking system.  This would transform Russia into the new United States when it comes to moving large amounts of money coming from all places -drug trade, arms trade, slave trade- to circulate and make its way across the world.  Of course Medvedev did not present it like that.  Instead, he said his policy would allow companies working on long-term investments.  Russia, he said, “was improving the legal system to offer better protection for businesses against the long arm of bureaucracy.”  In other words, crime, of the kind recently experienced through Wall Street banks around the world will have a safe heaven in Russia.  What Mr. Medvedev’s words mean is that all the policies that allowed the bankers to suck countries dry of their resources will also exist in the world order he dreams about, where Russia is the new leader and he’s the new Al Capone.  Limits to bureaucracy means zero regulation or a perfect environment for the corporations to run their shady Ponzi schemes.

The Russian president also talked about something that would make any corporate businessman smile, even in the rainiest day.  Russia has completed the process of simplifying migration procedures, so that workers can go in the country; or better, Russia just like China will allow corporations to pay some of the lowest wages to its citizens in exchange for long working days with no benefits and no rights.  Again, it’s clear he did not present it this way.  He said Russia had changed to attract “highly-qualified specialists” from the financial and technology sectors.  “The state should not tear down the apples from the tree of economics,” he said.

Medvedev complemented his speech on a new world order by forcefully attacking the dollar and claiming that it was time for a new reserve currency.  “Only three, five years ago it seemed like a fantasy” to create a new reserve currency. Now we are seriously discussing it.”  He does not seem to be alone in that ride.  It seems China is up to the challenge as well.  In the meantime, Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer added his voice to the Russian’s, but from a very different point of view, one that is rarely heard.  He said: “New reserve currencies don’t emerge by fiat. They emerge as countries change.”  A fiat currency is paper or electronic  money that is not backed up by a nation’s industry or production, but by an inflated system of blind trust on what a piece of paper says it is worth.

Apparently, both Russia and China think it is time for the East to drive the world and its markets.  “We really live at a unique time, and we should use it to build a modern, prosperous and strong Russia, a Russia that will be a co-founder of the new world economic order,” he said.  The problem with Medvedev’s vision is that his plan will not work, at least not for as long as he wants.  Although he intends to build something new, better and different, he plans on using the same old policies that brought us to the disaster he so clearly criticizes.  He wants prosperity, a modern economy and a strong Russia, but he wants zero regulation, a centralized dictatorial government and no sovereignty.  Maybe he forgets that Capitalism, the real Capitalism, was born from free independent nations that based their development on the use of their resources to produce quality goods that benefited the world.  Instead, he wants a global economy filled with cheap, slave-made products that need to be changed every few months.  He wants the best workers, but will follow the same old low-paying policies that maintains Asia’s and Latin America’s people in a continuous feudal model of development.

“If the world depended completely on the dollar, the situation would have been more difficult,” Medvedev reminded the audience.  So why does he want a single global currency, then?