From Volume 5, Issue Number 30 of EIR Online, Published July 25, 2006

Western European News Digest

Europeans Have Now Fully Adopted Bush/Cheney Agenda

A senior British intelligence source, commenting on the conclusion of the G-8 Summit and the response to the Middle East war, told EIR July 19 that he has seen a phase change in the European response.

"You are now hearing words and phrases you never heard Europeans saying. They have fully adopted the Bush Administration's agenda with eyes wide shut, despite the manifest failure of those policies. There has not been a peep of criticism of Israel, and now a steady attack on Syria and Iran."

On the other hand, he said, people have failed to notice that the Russians, Chinese, and Indians have a totally different policy. Russia did not back an outright condemnation of Hezbollah. It sees Iran as an ally. The source sees a Cold War-type confrontation in the works, with the U.S. and the Europeans on one side, and Russia, China, and those around the Shanghai Cooperation Organization on the other.

The European endorsement of the U.S. agenda simply sets the stage for an unopposed Israeli strike against Iran. He said that if and when that strike takes place, there might be a few words of criticism, but nothing else.

'Peerages' Inquiry Widens: Conspiracy Charges Possible

The UK's Deputy Assistant Commissioner of Police John Yates indicated at a private meeting with Members of Parliament on July 15 that the police are considering conspiracy charges against certain targets in the British cash-for-peerages inquiry. Until now, it had been thought that any charges would relate to the sale of Honours, or a failure to disclose loans on the form sent to the Lords Appointments Commission nominating individuals for peerages. Conspiracy may be an easier case to make, because detectives would only have to prove that there was an intention to commit a criminal offense. Yates said that his special crimes unit would interrogate Prime Minister Tony Blair within two months, after all other evidence has been gathered.

Meanwhile, it has been learned that Blair himself met secretly with Sir Gulam Noon—the enraged "Curry King" whom Lord Levy had told to rewrite his nominating petition to exclude a 250,000 pound loan to Labour—in an attempt to assuage him.

New Polish Government Wins Confidence Vote

The Polish government led by the new Prime Minister Jaruslaw Kaczynski—the twin brother of President Lech Kaczynski—won a Parliamentary vote of confidence July 19 by 240-205. In his speech, the new Prime Minister described his policy as one of continuity in foreign policy (membership in NATO and EU to be unchanged). He called, however, for a bigger national role of the EU newcomers in the EU decision-making process. "We are going to work for EU enlargement to mean real participation, not just final participation in all decision-making mechanisms." Poland should become a major country that counts in Europe, Kaczynski said.

A second major point in his address was to underline that the country would make the reforms of the country's public finances a top priority, although he did admit that there could be delays. Poland has launched reforms aimed at restructuring public expenditures and bringing its deficit into line with the so-called Maastricht convergence criteria for joining the single Euro currency zone. However Kaczynski set no deadline for entry into the eurozone, saying that he does not plan to join the single currency club any time soon, that the zloty would remain the national currency for years.

The Prime Minister also announced that Poland must think about "nuclear energy" (which the country does not now produce), and that Poland could not become the last light in this "European development."

French Bankers Demand Constitutional Changes

The French Minister of Finance, Thierry Breton, had no choice but to follow central bank dictates and pressure the Parliament into adopting the fusion between Felix Rohatyn's Suez and Gaz de France by Sept. 7, according to Le Figaro July 18. This will require creating a new law, which goes directly against the Preamble, Article 9 of the French Constitution. Instead of changing the bankrupt Synarchist banking system, the Finance Minister prefers to change the Constitution of the French Republic.

"It is now the time for Parliament to move," said Breton in an interview. "The question is not whether we are for or against the fusion of Gaz de France with such or such a group. This question will be decided according to the timing of the shareholders and their general assemblies. Today, the question before Parliament is to know whether we are ready, yes or no—and if yes, under what conditions—to give GDF the means to preserve its missions under conditions of an unprecedented evolution."

Breton concluded that the privatization of GDF is vital, "otherwise, GDF will not have the means to link itself with the necessary partners it requires for its development."

Classified Evidence on Italian Kidnapping May Point to U.S.

SISMI head Niccolo Pollari was interrogated by Prosecutor Armando Spataro in Milan last week, and declared that the evidence that SISMI (Italian Military Intelligence) is not involved in the CIA kidnapping of Egyptian Imam Abu Omar in February 2003, is contained in documents currently in possession of the Italian government and classified as state secrets. Such a formulation indicates that relationships between Italy and another nation, presumably the USA, are endangered if the contents of such documents are revealed.

Recently, former Italian President Francesco Cossiga had forcefully intervened in favor of not disclosing such papers, with the argument that relationships between SISMI and the CIA would be irreparably damaged. Cossiga visited jailed SISMI counterintelligence director Marco Mancini and presumably delivered instructions. Mancini then told prosecutors that his participation in the CIA kidnapping of Abu Omar had been ordered by SISMI head Pollari. Eventually, Pollari was interrogated and offered the "state secret" explanation. Pollari said that he never acted out of the chain of command, which means he acted on orders of the Italian government.

Today, Deputy Prime Minister Massimo D'Alema said in Parliament that "The government intends to collaborate with the prosecutors in order to fully know the truth," and that "the government shall take care that state secret obligations will be lifted for [SISMI] officials." Meanwhile, extradition requests have been sent by Milan prosecutors to the Justice Minister in Rome, for 22 U.S. citizens, including former CIA station chief in Rome Jeff Castelli.

Berlin Paper Features Bush/Nazi Connections

Making reference to the recent release of files from the U.S. National Archive, the Berliner Zeitung daily of July 15 wrote about the Bush family connections to the Nazis, under the headline: "Secret Golden Nest Egg for Nazi Leaders—The financial deals of the grandfather of George W. Bush."

The article specifically makes reference to a report in the New York Herald Tribune of July 30, 1942, exposing the role of Prescott Bush—father of George H.W. Bush, and grandfather of the current U.S. President—and other directors at Union Banking Corporation, in hiding away Nazi regime money. It all began with the 1918 establishment of Bank voor Handel en Sheepvaart in Rotterdam, by Fritz Thyssen, which, in 1934, was joined by Bush's Union Banking Corporation, in a deal between Averell Harriman and Thyssen, which had been prepared in talks in Berlin in 1922. The Berlin-based Von der Heydt's Bank completed the connection, in 1927. The latter bank was renamed into August Thyssen Bank in 1930.

Not only did Union Banking Corporation have profitable deals with the Nazis, it also brought Rockefeller funds into Germany, during the 1930s, until it lost its licenses in the spring of 1942, after being prosecuted in the USA under the Trading with the Enemy Act. Prosecutor Erwin May called the Prescott Bush bank "a secret golden nest egg for Nazi leaders."

Unfortunately, Prescott Bush got his UBC bank shares back in 1951, continued building his fortune, and thereby later funded the careers of his son and grandson.

Excessive Death Rates at Romanian Mittal Steel Plant

Mittal, the Lazard-connected steel company, which now becomes the world's largest steel producer with its acquisition of the Luxembourg-based Arcelor, is being attacked by trade unionists at its Galati plant in eastern Romania for putting employees' lives at risk. According to figures released by state safety inspectors and cited by the trade union leaders, 25 people have been killed and 254 injured since Mittal took over the plant in 2001, and in the last month, one worker was killed and three others critically injured, after being set ablaze at the plant's oxygen unit. Safety officials have reported that the plant has been fined 30,000 British pounds so far this year for disregarding safety rules. Mittal spokesmen have disputed the figures, and deny that the accidents were the consequence of the reduction of the workforce from 27,000 to 16,600 since the takeover.

This is not the first time that the Mittal takeover of the Romanian plant has been at the center of controversy. In 2001, there were charges that British Prime Minister Tony Blair had unduly influenced the Romanian government in favor of the Mittal buyout just weeks after Mittal donated 125,000 pounds to Blair's Labour Party.

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