Wednesday, January 25, 2006
"All These Things" by A.N. Field, 1936
ALL THESE THINGS
A. N. FIELD
Again, the devil taketh Him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth Him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
And saith unto Him, All these things will I give thee....
-St. Matthew iv; 8, 9.
A. N. FIELD
P.O. BOX 154, NELSON, NEW ZEALAND
THIS book is an assemblage of matter from many different sources exhibiting the nature and interconnection of certain world forces operating in many lands and making for the overthrow of the existing social order and the disintegration of patriotism, religion, and morality.
These influences are felt almost every day by every intelligent person. It is commonly assumed that the changes in opinion, conduct, and institutions which are taking place are, on the whole, changes for the better: that they represent progress and evolution from a lower to a higher and freer form of life. It is further widely assumed that they are a spontaneous growth.
Such was the author's own view until he was led some years ago to investigate the personnel behind certain great financial institutions. The facts encountered at first appeared incredible to him, but the further he went the more complete was the confirmation of their truth. The matter then collected was published in 1931 in a former volume "The Truth about the Slump."
Since then a large amount of matter has come to hand showing the operation of the same forces in other fields. A library of books might be collected dealing with different aspects of the subject, but as there appears to be nothing in the nature of a general conspectus covering the whole field it seemed that something of this kind might serve a useful purpose. The material collected to date has been drafted into twenty-eight chapters, of which the first seven appear in the present volume. It is hoped to publish the remainder of the material in later volumes completing the work.
The present volume is self-contained, but it is necessary to remind the reader that what is here presented covers only a small portion of the ground, touching on certain leading events during the past quarter of a century from 1912 to the present day. To bring the whole picture into perspective it is necessary to range much further afield.
Culled from a great variety of sources, the matter brought together is of varying degrees of validity. Writing in New Zealand, far away from the centre of events and the great libraries of the world, the author has had but limited opportunity of checking his matter to the full. He has, however, endeavoured to make some check of the general accuracy of every source used. These sources are named throughout, and the reader is thus in a position to proceed with independent check and verification on any point desired. In general, the further the research has been carried the more completely have the main facts been confirmed and amplified.
A great part of the activities described traces back to Jewish origin. This fact is quite inescapable; and it is quite impossible to arrive at any true understanding of the matters dealt with if it is ignored. At the same time it is necessary to remember that although certain Jews, or groups of Jews, are found engaged in activities detrimental to the interests of other races, it is unjust to jump to the conclusion that all Jews necessarily support or sympathize with the doings of these Jews. A fair-minded man should at all times be on his guard against drawing wide and sweeping inferences far beyond what any evidence will support. The truth can only be got at by proceeding on from fact to fact.
All that the author asks is that the reader, whatever his race, should temperately and calmly consider whether the unchecked operation of the forces herein described is likely to make the world a better or a worse place. A great aggressive power is at work in the world boring, undermining, and overthrowing. Every effort is made to prevent knowledge of what is happening from reaching the people. Only by that knowledge can the nations avert the dangers threatening them.
The publication of the remainder of this work will depend upon the reception with which the present volume meets. Readers desiring to secure copies of the second volume, or further volumes, are therefore invited to notify the undersigned.
A. N. FIELD.
P.O. Box 154,
Nelson, New Zealand
STRAWS IN THE WIND
1. SOME NEW ZEALAND HAPPENINGS
THE story to be told in these pages deals with many strange and enigmatical events very far away from New Zealand. At the same time in looking around at our own affairs in this country one notices certain things, some of no great moment and others of more importance, but all tending to raise a question in the mind as to whether they came about purely by chance.
Two years or so ago the silver coins in circulation in New Zealand were replaced by a new nickel coinage of lower intrinsic value, corresponding to the lower value which had been given to the New Zealand bank-note pound. When the new coins appeared it was noticeable that the inscription was different from that on the old coins. The old coins in abbreviated Latin set out the Royal style and titles: "George V, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland, and of the British Dominions beyond the Seas, King, Defender of the Faith, Emperor of India." The new coins simply bore the legend: "George V: King Emperor." His Majesty on these coins was no longer King "by the Grace of God," nor was he "Defender the Faith." All reference to the religious aspect of the Monarchy had been removed from the coins. There was no necessity for this, for the design on the reverse with the words "New Zealand" made the coins quite distinctive. A trifling thing, the reader may say. Nevertheless, a significant trifle. Just a straw in the wind. A needless thing done. The person who did it must have acted from either one or other of two motives. He must either have regarded the references to the religious aspect of the Monarchy as of no importance; or they must have been definitely repugnant to him, and he took the opportunity of quietly removing them. Whoever did this, moreover, did it at a time when a world campaign against the Christian religion is proceeding. In the midst of that campaign somebody needlessly removed from the coins of New Zealand the reminder that the British Monarchy rests on a definitely religious basis: that our King is not fully vested in his Kingship until he has been consecrated to God, and has pledged himself to maintain the Christian faith. A New Zealander has only to pull a sixpence out of his pocket to have evidence in his hand that whoever designed his country's coinage was without interest in either the Grace of God or the Defence of the Faith.
Some time ago in looking over a list of officials in control of the people of New Zealand — the most British of the Dominions as it is often called—the author noticed that half a dozen key positions were at that time filled by persons with names indicative of non-British ancestry of various kinds. The officials in question were all of the highest character, and there were no grounds for raising any shadow of doubt as to their attachment to British interests. Nevertheless in a community where the percentage of persons of foreign extraction is small, it was surprising to find a number of high positions simultaneously occupied by officials bearing the sort of names one might expect to see if the League of Nations had sent an international delegation from Geneva to govern the country. Was it purely by chance that these posts happened at this time to be so filled? Or was it possible that a dash of foreign blood carried with it much greater ability than unmixed British and so brought its possessors automatically to the top? Or was it by any means possible that somewhere in the background some subtle internationalist influence came into play? These questions can only be stated. They are stated because curious internationalist leanings have been apparent in other directions in New Zealand, and because one notices in other parts of the Empire from time to time the raising of questions about the gravitation to high office of persons whose antecedents are not of an entirely unmixed British character, almost as though it were desired gradually to accustom British people to being ruled as a matter of course by men of other race than their own.
* * * *
In 1930 two emissaries of the Bank of England visited New Zealand to advise its Government on monetary matters.
Their names were not distinctively British. One was Sir Otto Ernsy Niemeyer; the other was Professor Theodor Ernanuel Gugenheim Gregory, a member of the teaching staff of the London School of Economics, a nursery of Socialism, as we shall see in the next volume, and staffed largely by teachers bearing names indicative of foreign extraction. Sir Otto Niemeyer was a functionary at the British Treasury from 1906 until 1927, holding the post of Controller of Finance from 1922 to 1927. In the latter year he joined the staff of the Bank of England. Professor Gregory seems to have been detached temporarily from the staff of the Socialist institution to accompany him to Australia and New Zealand as "economic adviser."
Sir Otto Niemeyer made a report advising the Government of New Zealand to establish a private corporation to control the volume of currency and credit in the country. He also proposed that this privately owned central reserve bank should be given a permanent monopoly of all the Government's "money, remittance, exchange and banking transactions." He further proposed that the Government should find a million sterling for the working capital of the bank, in respect of which sum it would hold no shares and have no voice in the management; and that half a million should be obtained by the issue of shares to the public, the holders of such shares to be the owners of the bank. In the original Bill as introduced it was left open to foreigners to own the bank, though only shareholders who were British subjects resident in New Zealand had votes at bank meetings. Furthermore, the share list was not open to inspection and ownership of the institution was thus secret. It was not easy to see what advantages the Government was to gain from an institution set up as recommended in this report. Sir Otto Niemeyer certainly pointed to no outstanding Benefit to the people of New Zealand. The terms on which he Government banking account was secured were distinctly unfavourable terms. The bank was given a monopoly of the account; the Government was given no right to so much as a pennyworth of accommodation from the bank; the bank might give accommodation to a limited amount if it chose, but need not if it did not so choose. No private concern would dream giving a monopoly of its banking account on such terms, nor would any private person ever consider finding two-thirds of the capital for any venture without having a voice in its control. It was a very one-sided arrangement in every aspect.
When the Reserve Bank Bill was before Parliament in 1933 an amendment of a quite ineffective nature was inserted giving the Government representation on the board of the bank. Of the nine members three were to be Government nominees: but once appointed even these minority representatives were not to be amenable to Government control, for they held office far five years and the Government was powerless to displace them during that time if dissatisfied with their conduct.
Another amendment was made by Parliament at the instance of a private member, Mr. R. A. Wright. This provided that the shares should be issued only to British subjects ordinarily resident in New Zealand. It is to be assumed that the original draft permitting foreign ownership was not so framed without reason. To gain light on this point the international origin of reserve banking requires to be considered.
2. INTERNATIONALISM IN EXCELSIS
The parent of the new model central reserve banks is the United States Federal Reserve Board and its twelve regional Federal Reserve Banks set up about six months before the European War broke out. These banks are privately-owned institutions with very complete control over the volume of currency and credit in the United States, and thus over th« prevailing level of wages and prices. The principal prime mover in creating the Federal Reserve system was the late Mr. Paul Warburg (1868-1932), who with his brother, Mr. Felix Warburg, was a partner in the international banking-house of Kuhn, Loeb and Company, New York. The head of that firm at this time was Mr. Jacob H. Schiff (1847-1920). According to the Jewish Encyclopaedia the Schiff family is the oldest contemporary Jewish family of which there is record, tracing its ancestry back to 1370. In "All in a Lifetime" (Heinemann, 1923), the memoirs of another eminent Jew, Mr. Henry Morgenthau, Senior, formerly United States Ambassador to Turkey, Mr. Schiff was referred to as "the much beloved leader of the Jews." He was born in Frankfort-on-the-Main, where his father was a broker for the Rothschilds. In America he built up and controlled enormous railway, telegraph and telephone and innumerable other combines. He was decorated by the Mikado for financing Japan in her war against Russia, and much matter has been printed tending to show that he financed Russian revolutionaries freely.
Mr. Paul Warburg was brother-in-law to Mr. Schiff, and was also a Jew of German birth, becoming naturalized as an American citizen in 1911, three years before the war. His brothers conduct the powerful German banking-house of M. Warburg and Company, Hamburg, financing the German shipping industry and controlling the Hamburg-America and North German Lloyd lines. Herr Max Warburg, head of this banking-house, played an important part in German politics, particularly at the time the Kaiser fled to Holland. Dr. Carl Melchoir, a partner in it, was one of the five German delegates-in-chief at the Peace Conference at Versailles, and in later years was prominent in the founding of the Bank for international Settlements, the central bank of the central banks established in Switzerland, which has been internationalized in peace and war alike, pays no taxes, and is above and beyond all law. Provision was made in the New Zealand Reserve Bank Act for our reserve bank to join up with the Bank for International Settlements (B.I.S.). A message from Basle, Switzerland, published in the London "Times" of April 9, 1934, in reporting a meeting of this institution, said: "The newly-established [Reserve] Bank of Canada and Bank of New Zealand are empowered by their Governments to buy B.I.S. shares and to make deposits at the bank as soon as the stabilization of the respective currencies will allow." This shows that these reserve banks were established as part of the network of an international money trust.
Of the war-time activities of Mr. Paul Warburg, promoter the Federal Reserve, we find Sir Cecil Spring-Rice, British Ambassador to the United States from 1912 to the end of 1917 writing as follows under date of November 13, 1914; "He practically controls the financial policy of the immistration, and Paish and Blackett had to negotiate with him. Of course it was exactly like negotiating with Germany. Everything that was said was German property." In various books on war-time espionage the Hamburg-America offices in New York are referred to as the centre of German espionage in the United States. In a pamphlet published by him in 1932 ("A State Currency: to Hell with Wall Street"), Mr. George W, Armstrong, president of the Texas Steel Company, printed what he said was the United States Naval Secret Service report on Mr. Paul Warburg under date of December 12, 1918. As given by Mr. Armstrong this ran in part as follows: "Warburg, Paul . . . handled large sums furnished by Germany for Lenin and Trotsky; subject has a brother who is leader of the espionage system (of Germany)." The allegations as to the participation of Messrs. Schiff and Warburg in the financing of the Russian revolution will be dealt with later. Mr. McAdoo, President Wilson's son-in-law and Secretary of the Treasury during the war, was a former partner with Mr. Warburg, and the "Dictionary of National Biography" records that the late Sir Ernest Cassel, the Jewish friend and financial adviser of King Edward VII, was associated in former years with Mr. Jacob Schiff in effecting some of the great American railway combines in which his firm specialized. The authorities for the foregoing statements (where not given above) will be found in the author's previous book "The Truth about the Slump."
As to the mode of operation of the great American money-controlling machine established under the above auspices, we have the fact that it was created for the ostensible purpose of preventing financial crises, and there have been greater and more violent crises since it was established than were ever previously known. Professor J. R. Commons, of the University of Winconsin, testified in evidence before the United States House of Representatives Banking and Currency Committee in 1927 that a member of the Federal Reserve Board had told him that the great inflation of 1919 was deliberately created by the Federal Reserve Board. Minutes of a secret Federal Reserve conference of May, 1920, ordering immediate contraction of credit have been freely quoted in Congressional documents as direct evidence of the cause of the depression which brought disaster all over the world at that time. Former Senator Robert L. Owen, who as chairman of the Senate Banking and Currency Committee piloted the Federal Reserve Bill through the Senate in 1913, testified before the House Banking Committee on March 18, 1932, that the great world depression beginning in October, 1929, was brought about by deliberate contraction of credit by the Federal Reserve system, specifying in detail the actions which led to the disaster. The allegations as to the deliberate expansion and contraction of currency and credit by the Federal Reserve system will be examined in Chapter V.
Soon after the war was over the international financiers decided that the time was ripe to establish reserve banks all over the world. Whatever other people might think of the Federal Reserve system in the United States, it satisfied the financiers. In 1922 there was held a great international conference at Genoa at which Herr Walter Rathenau, the Jewish Foreign Minister of Germany, surprised the world by announcing that Germany had decided to recognize the Bolshevik Government of Russia, being the first country in the world to do so. Simultaneously another conference was sitting in Genoa attended among others by Mr. Montagu Norman, Governor of the Bank of England, the Governor of the Bank of France, the Governor of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and other international bankers. This conference resolved that central reserve banks should be set up in all countries where they were not already in existence. This work was thereafter steadily proceeded with and such banks have been established throughout almost the whole world.
A prominent part in the establishment of these banks was played by Mr. Montagu Norman, Governor of the Bank of England. In "Montagu Norman, a Study in Financial Statesmanship" (Kegan, Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1932), Mr. Paul Einzig, editor of the London "Financial Review," tells us that Mr. Norman "raised central banking after its early haphazard growth to a scientific system." In this he was "assisted by able and experienced experts such as Sir Otto Niemeyer and Mr. Siepmann." Further, "the names with which the elaboration of these (central bank) statutes was closely associated are those of Sir Otto Niemeyer and Sir Henry Strakosch."
In passing it may be noted that according to matter in Lieut.-Col. A. H. Lane's book, "The Alien Menace" (1932), Baron Georges Strakosch von Feldringen of Vienna is nephew to Sir Henry Strakosch, who is listed as Jewish in the "Fascist" of June, 1935.
Of the doings of this internationalist picnic party, Mr. Einzig, conductor of London's "Financial Review," proceeds to tell us that: "Another condition on which Mr. Norman and is collaborators insisted was that the central banks should independent of their governments." It is emphasized that on this "they insisted rather dogmatically." In other words, the State was not to govern in the sphere of money, which was to be left to the Normans, Siepmanns, Niemeyers, Strakosches, etc., ad lib. Despite the audacity of these proceedings they were entirely successful. The paid economists duly discovered that reserve banks were marvellous scientific improvements, the newspapers joined in the chorus of applause, and the politicians of the various States behaved as so many bellwethers leading the sheep into the slaughterhouse. The fact was entirely overlooked that these financiers are in no sense public servants, but simply the paid agents of the shareholders in a banking company whose interests need not in the least be identical with the national interest.
This digression has been made to permit the reader to appreciate the highly international atmosphere in which central banking, and incidentally the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, had its birth. Sir Otto Niemeyer in his report said we ought to have a reserve bank to co-operate with the reserve banks of other countries as these banks had "no suitable point of contact in New Zealand." Furthermore, we were told that we would be benefited by having our Reserve Bank ship away all or most of the gold held by the banks in New Zealand. It was pointed out that this gold did not bear interest and it was thus a dead loss to hold it when we might exchange it for interest-bearing paper. It thus appeared that Sir Otto Niemeyer and his friends, on purely philanthropic grounds, were willing to carry off our gold, bear the dead loss on it themselves, and hand us over valuable paper for it. Nobody in the Government of New Zealand ever paused to think whether there might be any drawback to this admirable arrangement. It was swallowed whole. The entire reserve against the paper money issued by the New Zealand Reserve Bank may lawfully consist of private people's bills of exchange promising to pay sterling or some foreign gold-standard money. These bills of exchange do not need to have the least connection with the trade of New Zealand, and may be concerned with sales and purchases between foreigners in any part of the world.
The Reserve Bank Act was passed in 1933. It so happened that in the preceding year advantage had been taken of a similar, but not so sweeping, provision in the United States Federal Reserve law by one Ivar Kreuger with the assistance of aiders and abettors in America. Mr. Kreuger successfully worked off on the United States Federal Reserve some very large parcels of commercial bills of exchange which were later discovered to have no exchange value at all. Speaking in Congress on June 10, 1932, Mr. Louis T. McFadden, long chairman of the House of Representatives Banking and Currency Committee, said: "Every dollar of the billions Kreuger and his gang drew out of this country on acceptances [bills of exchange] was drawn from the Government and the people of the United States through the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Reserve Banks. The credit of the United States Government was peddled to him. . . " Mr. McFadden explained at length and in detail how by allowing foreign commercial bills of exchange to be used as a basis for the issue of money in the United States immense frauds had for years been systematically worked by "the swindlers and speculators of all nations," bad bills being bought by the Federal Reserve by the issue of good money, and the loss being saddled on the taxpayers of America.
In lectures at Oxford University immediately following on the exposure of the gigantic Kreuger frauds, Professor Gustav Cassel, the well-known monetary expert, said of this method of keeping central bank reserves in foreign exchange that it had been "completely discredited by the occurrences of the last year." Twelve months later the Parliament of New Zealand adopted this "completely discredited" basis for its reserve bank currency; and the Government of the day even went so far as to announce the new system as a wonderful reform.
Immediately it was established the New Zealand's Reserve Bank took over the gold in the trading banks and duly shipped about three-quarters of it away in return for exchange paper. It also took over from the trading banks something in the neighbourhood of 16 millions of sterling in London. Large sums were thus made available for dealing in bills of exchange in the short-term money market in London. If it were possible to uncover the actual facts it might be instructive to see exactly who has been financed by the internationalists with these millions belonging to the people : New Zealand. It is quite open, for example, for the money be employed in financing the trade of our competitors in the British market. The London moneylenders, as everybody knows, have long had much greater interests in the Argentine than in this quarter of the world. Whatever has been done with our money it was not intelligent to leave large sums loose and open to be used in furthering other people's interests instead of our own.
* * * *
Now let us go back and consider just why it should have been left open in the Reserve Bank Bill for foreigners to hold Reserve Bank shares. The foreigners had no voting rights: they could not elect the directors and have a say at bank meetings. What result followed if they bought shares? This very important result: if the Parliament of New Zealand at a future date decided to amend or abolish the Reserve Bank it would be changing the terms of a piece of legislation forming the basis of a contract between the Government of New Zealand and the citizens of a foreign State who had put up their money and bought shares in the bank. These foreigners would then be in a position to have their Government take up the question of this breach of contract either with the Imperial Government or the Government of New Zealand. Obstacles might thus readily be put in the way of Parliament interfering with the Reserve Bank. And we have the word of Mr. Einzig, editor of the London "Financial Review," that Mr. Montagu Norman, and Sir Otto Ernst Niemeyer, and Sir Henry Strakosch and Mr. Siepmann, and the rest of the gentlemen who run the Bank of England, insist "rather dogmatically" that these banks are to be independent of their governments. Happily New Zealand did not leave it open to foreigners to own its Reserve Bank, and the State has since become sole owner.
Another very curious thing happened when the Mortgage Corporation Bill came before Parliament in 1935. This measure set up a second great privately-owned concern to take over the loans of the Government lending departments, or rather to take them over to the extent to which they were good, leaving the rest on the taxpayers' backs. As in the case of the Reserve Bank, it was extremely obscure what benefit the people of New Zealand were supposed to derive from this institution. The wording of the legislation suggested a certain identity of origin with the Reserve Bank. The sections relating to the capital and shares, for instance, seemed to have been lifted bodily, word for word, from the Reserve Bank Bill. Strangely, like the Reserve Bank Bill in its original form, the New Zealand Mortgage Corporation Bill left it open for foreigners to own the institution. The rest of the wording of the sections about capital was the same as in the Reserve Bank Act, but the amendment which had been inserted in that Act at the instance of Mr. R. A. Wright, M.P., restricting share ownership to British subjects resident in New Zealand, had been somehow omitted. It is very difficult to think that this omission was accidental. Only £500,000 of capital was required: there was no necessity to go outside New Zealand for such a sum. Mr. Wright, as he had done in the previous case, thereupon moved to restrict ownership to British subjects ordinarily resident in New Zealand. The Government of the day did not reject Mr. Wright's amendment. It would have looked extremely strange if it had rejected such an amendment. What did the Government do? It accepted Mr. Wright's amendment — and then added words on to it that completely nullified it. As the law was enacted no individual other than a British subject ordinarily resident in New Zealand could own shares in the Mortgage Corporation, but any company, British or foreign, with a place of business in New Zealand could own shares to any extent. It was thus legally competent for the entire ownership of this corporation to pass into foreign hands, and even on some future war occurring for it to be found in the possession of the King's enemies. The sequence of events showed quite clearly that, for reasons not disclosed to the public, the Government then office considered it essential that the law should leave it open for the ownership of this great corporation controlling immense areas of the farming lands of New Zealand to fall in part or whole into foreign hands. What was the meaning of this straw in the wind? Perhaps later in these pages we may see further into this. It is satisfactory to note that the new Government is resuming control of this institution also.
When the Reserve Bank Bill was before the Legislative Council in November, 1933, Sir James Parr had charge of the measure as Leader of the Council and representative of Cabinet therein. Sir James Parr, as a former High Commissioner for New Zealand in London, had been in contact with London financiers. In moving the Reserve Bank Bill he referred to Sir Otto Niemeyer in the following terms:
"He was born in England, and comes of four generations of men of his family born in England, and, therefore, full British subjects. I have sat, both at Geneva and in London, on important commissions with Sir Otto Niemeyer as one of the financial advisers to these commissions. Sir Otto I know to be a Britisher through and through, in his sentiments as loyal to the British Empire as you or I."
Now it so happened that the portion of this statement printed in heavy type was very difficult to reconcile with statements concerning Sir Otto Niemeyer to which the present writer had given publicity. He at once wrote to Sir James Parr pointing out the discrepancy between his own and Sir James Parr's statements, and inquiring whether Sir James had positive knowledge that Sir Otto Niemeyer came of four generations of men of his family born in England and therefore full British subjects. The letter proceeded:
"As this statement is difficult to reconcile with matter contained in a book in the Parliamentary Library and quoted by me in good faith in my book 'The Truth about the Slump,' and as I may shortly be issuing a new edition of this book, I shall be grateful if you will let me know whether you have positive information that what is contained therein is incorrect, as I am naturally desirous of having my facts as accurate as possible.
"On page ii of the appendix to my book I quoted matter from 'The Alien Menace' by Lieut.-Col. A. H. Lane (Boswell Press, London, 2nd edition, 1929) in which are reprinted extracts from what purports to be correspondence of the late Dr. Ellis Powell, then editor of the London 'Financial News,' with the late Mr. Bonar Law, then Chancellor of the Exchequer. Writing on December 18, 1918, Dr. Powell is stated to have asked Mr. Bonar Law whether certain Germans named Niemeyer who had ill-treated British prisoners of war had a near relative occupying a high position in the Treasury and married to a German wife. It is added that five days later Mr. R. M. Gower wrote in reply from Treasury Chambers, Whitehall, as follows:
'Mr. Bonar Law wishes me to inform you that the case of Mr. Niemeyer was recently considered by the Committee appointed by the Government to examine the cases of persons not the children of British-born subjects who are employed in Government Departments, and that the Committee had decided that it was in the public interest that Mr. Niemeyer should hold the post which he occupies in the Treasury.'
"Colonel Lane added: 'Thereupon Dr. Powell wrote direct to Mr. Bonar Law two further letters in the second of which he pointed out that no answer had been given to his question whether Mr. Niemeyer of the Treasury was any relation "of the Germans referred to." At this point the correspondence seems to have ended. I now put to Sir Otto Ernest Niemeyer the same question. I make no reflection on the personal character and integrity of Sir Otto Ernst Niemeyer. I publish the above facts because I feel strongly that it should be known to the British people to what extent our Government services are directed by officials of alien extraction.'
"If your own statement is correct, and if the foregoing is correct, it seems an extraordinary thing that the case of Sir Otto (then Mr.) Niemeyer should have been referred for examination by a Committee set up to deal with the cases of persons in a different category altogether. Colonel Lane, in the third edition of his book, published last year, seems to have been as unsuccessful as Dr. Powell in obtaining an answer to his question. It is a legitimate inference that if Mr. Bonar Law had been able to say there was no relationship he would have done so.
"The circumstance prompting Dr. Powell's inquiry seems to have been the publication in the London Press of the report of the Government Committee, presided over by Mr. Justice Younger, on the treatment of British prisoners of war in Germany. This appeared in the London 'Times' of December 5, 1918, under the headings: 'Torture of our Officers. Twin Tyrants. Three Specimens of the German Brute.' It was strongly condemnatory of the conduct of Captains Karl and Heinrich Niemeyer, twin brothers, in command respectively of the prison camps at Holzminden and Clausthal in Hanover, in which were interned most of the British officer prisoners of war.
"Further reference to this matter is made in another book 'The Tunnellers of Holzminden' by Mr. H. G. Durnford, M.C., M.A., Fellow of King's College, Cambridge (Cambridge University Press, 2nd edition, 1930). On page 106 it is stated that the conduct of the two Captains Niemeyer was so bad that about May, 1918, the British Government, as a last resort, having failed to secure any redress, instituted reprisals by segregating for special treatment all the Hanoverian officers among the German prisoners of war in Britain. On page 159 it is stated: 'Both the Niemeyers figured on the Black List [of War Criminals] communicated by the Supreme Council to the German Government during or after the Peace Conference.' On page 28 it is stated that the conduct of Captain Karl Niemeyer had been strongly condemned by the German War Office itself when he was in command of a prison camp at Strohen, but this had not interfered with his appointment to Holzminden. On page 35 it is stated that the reason for the high favour enjoyed by the Niemeyers 'was always something of an enigma,' and that according to a member of the Netherlands Legation they were under the personal patronage of the Emperor. 'Certain it is,' states Mr. Durnford, 'that despite the strongest representations ever since the departure of the first party for exchange to Holland —from British officers to the British General commanding in that country, from the General to the War Office, from the War Office back to the British Legation in Holland, from the Legation to the Dutch Government, and from the Dutch Government to Berlin—the pair stuck like leeches, and retired, by the back door, only at such an advanced period in the war that it had become evident that not even the patronage of the All-Highest was likely to avail them much longer.'
"In view of the strong stand taken by you in the past as Minister of Education on questions of nationality, as evidenced by your introduction of the practice of saluting the Flag in the schools, and your dismissals of certain teachers on points of loyalty, I take it that you have positive evidence that Sir Otto Niemeyer is not in any way related to the two Captains Niemeyer referred to above. Your speech as published, however, does not specifically cover the points referred to in Colonel Lane's book, and I shall be extremely grateful for information as to the actual position.
"Sir Otto Niemeyer's association with the disastrous American debt settlement as the principal Government official accompanying Mr. Baldwin on his ill-fated mission to the United States in January, 1923, and his membership of the Treasury Committee in 1925, on whose recommendation Mr. Churchill made the equally disastrous return to gold in that year, do not point to his possession of greater financial acumen than might have been obtained from a financial adviser of our own blood and flesh. I certainly think it a !ost extraordinary thing that Mr. Bonar Law should fail to answer the plain and simple question put to him by Dr. Powell, and I hope that you will answer it. It is a very horrible thought that there should be any possibility of a high official in the British Treasury in the midst of a life and death struggle being the near relative of a pair of scoundrels against whom the British Government was actually taking reprisals for non-observance of the rules of civilized warfare. ."
The above letter was dated November 28, 1933. Sir James Parr replied under date of December 18. After quoting a long extract from his speech, he said:
"Apparently the sentence to which you take exception is the statement that: 'He comes of four generations of men of his family born in England, and, therefore, full British subjects.'
"When I made this statement I did so on specific information supplied to me by a Departmental Officer, and my statement was made in all good faith. I have since made enquiries by cable, and I find that Sir Otto Niemeyer was born in England and is a British subject. His father was a native of Hanover who came to England because his country was annexed by the Prussians, and he became a naturalized British subject. Further, it is quite clear that Sir Otto's mother was English by birth. On his mother's side the line is British for several generations at least. It would also appear that Sir Otto Niemeyer is not a Jew. There is no doubt that Sir Otto has a long record of distinguished public service, and has enjoyed, and still enjoys, the full confidence of English Governments and of the English financial world.
"I have no knowledge whatever regarding the other question, as to Sir Otto's relationship with certain German officers. But, as regards Sir Otto himself, I may repeat that I saw much of him in London in various capacities, and both his sympathies and his speech were as pro-British as yours or mine.
"With the modifications now made by me in one sentence only, the rest of my speech, I think, is correct."
The statement so emphatically made in Parliament by Sir James Parr as to the long British ancestry of Sir Otto Niemeyer thus proves to be an inaccurate statement. And the question asked by Dr. Ellis Powell and repeated by Colonel Lane remains an unanswered question. High finance is international: but we do not want internationalism in the British Treasury in time of war. As to whether we had it in this particular case, Sir James Parr had "no knowledge whatever." We certainly had it in some other departments of State in curious instances which will presently come under our notice. The principle involved rises superior to all questions of personality. A straightforward question was asked by Dr. Powell, and a straightforward answer should have been given him.
4. THESE BROAD-MINDED DAYS
If we find distinct traces of internationalism—and an internationalism devoid of any conspicuous benefit—in the incubation and framing of recent legislation in this country we must not be surprised to find it accompanied by indications of "broadmindedness" in other directions. The difference between the ordinary and the broadminded way of looking at things was succintly put in a few pithy words in Joseph Conrad's strange chronicle of revolutionary intrigue "Under Western Eyes," written a quarter of a century back:
"History-—not Theory Patriotism—not Internationalism Evolution—not Revolution Direction—not Destruction Unity—not Disruption."
Curious indications of leanings to the broad-minded side in unsuspected quarters will be found in plenty by anyone who takes the trouble to peruse that voluminous document containing the evidence given before the New Zealand Government Monetary Committee in 1934. We shall find there that in cross-examining witnesses advocating monetary reform the Conservative members of Parliament on the committee quoted with frequency a certain book which they appeared to regard as a sort of Bible on monetary matters This was "What Everybody Wants to Know about Money" (Gollancz, 1933), the author of which is Mr G. D. H. Cole, Reader in Economics at the University of Oxford.
Mr. Cole is a Socialist. He does not consider the social results he desires are to be obtained by monetary reform Tn other books and speeches he has made clear the line of ;action preferred by him. In his book "The World of Labour", he says that "the interests of Capital and Labour are diametrically opposed"; that " 'social peace' is a sham and a trick"; that matters can only be righted by "the overthrow of capitalist society." Mr. Cole emphasized his views in an address delivered to the British Socialist League as reported in the "New Clarion" of January 27, 1934. He said: "A classless society will never come from above, but only as the result of the working class toppling over the capitalist system from below." A Parliamentary victory would be quite insufficient: what was wanted "involves the direct and formidable class action of the workers in the mass."
People who do not keep themselves up to date may be surprised to know that a person holding such views as Mr. Cole holds is considered a fit and proper instructor for British youth at Oxford University. In passing it may be noted that Mr. Cole's numerous books on economics usually appear through the Jewish publishing house of Gollancz, whose publications make an interesting study. If the existing social order is violently overthrown, as Mr. Cole advocates, it will only be because the mass of the people are suffering want and privation. The existing order is capable of producing in abundance all that the people require. If they are unable to obtain what they require it is mainly because they lack the money to buy it. The problem is thus a monetary one. But if by monetary reform this state of things were remedied a violent overthrow of the existing social order would be most unlikely. It is a very striking fact that, taken generally, Communists and Socialists are as violently opposed to monetary reform as is the moneyed interest itself. Their sine qua non is not so much the betterment of conditions, as the violent overthrow of the whole present constitution of society. Destruction is the immediate objective.
It was curious to find Conservative members of Parliament treating with such deference the views of one who sees in formidable mass action of the workers to topple over the present social order the cure for the diseases of that order. The official spokesman for the Douglas Credit Association of New Zealand in commenting upon this fact in evidence before the committee remarked: "We are rather bewildered when a man professing to be a Socialist is yet a Communist and is used in support of the present system." At the same time this witness himself said: "I am a great admirer of Cole; I feel that if Douglas fails, we will have to revert to Cole:" and again: "I admire Cole, and we may relapse into his philosophy if we fail."
It was furthermore noticeable that when the Monetary Committee came to draft its recommendations the Conservative majority (with one exception) appended their names to a report which almost completely ignored the evidence presented and enlarged at length on what might be achieved by a Planned Economy regimenting and controlling industry, the inference being that monetary reform was useless and Planning the only real cure. Advocacy of Planned Economy was also to be found in the evidence of Mr. Walter Nash in explaining his scheme for financing guaranteed prices by Government control of the external trade of the country. Mr. Nash was then a private member of Parliament but is now Minister of Finance in the Labour Government which came into office following on the elections in November, 1935. He deprecated the view that monetary reform was in itself a remedy for the national difficulties. "We have got to fit into a system of planned production," he said. Many leading questions as to the advantages of Planning were asked of witnesses by the Government economist attached to the committee as an expert, and at the time of writing on the staff of Mr. Nash as Minister of Finance.
A considerable literature has appeared in Britain of late expatiating on the merits of Planned Economy. Some of it is written by Conservatives and some by people of more radical tendencies. Articles in support of Planned Economy have appeared in the most Conservative London newspapers. Whence comes this Planning and what is its significance? At the moment it is sufficient to note that just as nothing was heard of reserve banks until after the establishment of the Federal Reserve system in the United States, so nothing was heard of Planning until after the Bolsheviks in Russia had formulated their Five Year Plan. The financiers put on the screw by taking money out of circulation and thus created want and discontent among the people. The Moscow Bolsheviks and their agents throughout the world then loudly affirmed that the only cure was a universal Communistic revolution. On that revolution not developing, another school of thought arises which asserts that we can only escape from our difficulties by adopting a Planned Economy. Is this view sound or is it a mistaken view? It seems that in the circumstances we should at least do well to sift out and understand all we can of the movement for Planning.
Before tracing out the developments abroad in the direction of Planned Economy and the personnel behind them we shall in the next three chapters consider certain curious happenings immediately before, during, and after the Great War, for it is from the dislocations following on that great event that our most acute troubles spring.
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