Within the next year, the European Union and Latin America are set to sign one of the most comprehensive bilateral agreements ever witnessed between two continents.
Together they will create a dominant cross-Atlantic power bloc linked by trade, mutual economic interest, and social, political and religious affinity.
What so few understand is that the key players behind the scenes in the creation of this massive trade bloc have worked patiently for over 50 years to see their master plan implemented.
In fact, the groundwork was laid during a secret meeting of a number of Germany’s principal industrialists in Strasbourg, France, in August 1944. At this meeting, plans were drafted for the repatriation of German funds to other countries in preparation for the development of a new German empire based on global trade and investment.
There followed the establishment of the Vatican “ratlines,” an interconnection of underground safe houses and transit routes whereby SS officers and Nazi Party members escaped from Europe only to turn up in foreign countries under a new name, complete with a new identity. Many of these senior Nazi party members headed for Latin America. Once ensconced in their new abodes, they became respectable businessmen or technocrats attached to some of global business’s most respected names. Others were involved in training the military and security forces of various dictators in Latin America as that continent headed into its revolutionary phase of coup and countercoup following World War ii. Many supplied support as secret service agents during the Cold War when the Soviet Union was involved in trying to destabilize the region.
Ironically, this was often done with the support of the U.S. in the interests of waging the Cold War against the Soviets. In other instances, the Americans simply turned a blind eye, as long as they continued to receive intelligence from these agents, who were in fact working toward their own fascist ends.
By the late 1940s, German officers had largely penetrated the military and security forces of Argentina. Krupp’s industrial strength was well established in Brazil. Hitler’s Croat “Ustashi” Chief Ante Pavelic was heavily influencing security in Paraguay. Nazi intelligence agents populated ig Farben (Bayer) in Chile and Venezuela, and Nazi Party organizers of Brueckmann & Co. were firmly on the ground in Ecuador.
Since then, German businesses, their path often smoothed by agents of the Holy See, have increasingly led the penetration of the European Union into key industrial, agricultural and commercial industries within Latin America. German corporate giants such as Krupp, Siemens, Bayer, Volkswagen, I.G. Farben and Deutsche Bank steadily became household names across the Central American isthmus, through that crossroads of intrigue, Panama, and clear down to southern Chile and Argentina.
From the time of Germany’s reunification and the resultant push for a stronger political voice on the world stage, the EU has stepped up its infiltration of Latin America. Earlier this year it even established an office in Cuba, right on the U.S.’s back doorstep (see “From Communism to Catholicism?” in our May issue).
EU and Mercosur
On November 25, 1999, after signing a historic free-trade agreement with Mexico, the EU announced that it was working to conclude formal talks toward a free-trade pact with the entire Latin American region, thus combining what is known as the Rio Group (which includes Central America, the Andean Community and Mercosur) with Cariforum (which includes all Caribbean countries). The crowning jewel, however, is clearly the Latin American common market—Mercosur. Since that time, both sides have moved rapidly toward the 2004 deadline for signing a formal agreement on free trade.
Mercosur is a vast economic bloc incorporating Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay with Chile and Bolivia as associate members. It is actually based upon the EU common market model, but without the supranational institutions. The EU has long planned to use an agreement with the us$1 trillion Mercosur market to gain control of the region. The EU-Mercosur free-trade agreement will cover 90 percent of two-way trade. This new “strategic alliance” directly usurps U.S. efforts to garner greater economic prosperity from the region.
Brazil and Argentina have the greatest bilateral trade among Mercosur members. Both countries, presently being stimulated to economic recovery, are set to dominate the southern continent’s relations with the EU. Significantly, the newly elected German Catholic leader of Argentina, Nestor Kirchner, has declared support of EU-Latin America trade relations in preference to any trade deals with the U.S.-dominated free trade association.
Last March, EU Commissioner for External Relations Chris Patten and EU Trade Commissioner Pascal Lamy, alongside EU foreign ministers, met in Athens, Greece, with their Latin American counterparts from the Rio Group, Mercosur, the Andean Community, Mexico and Chile. Understandings were reached that will propel developments forward in anticipation of a summit meeting in Mexico between Latino countries and the EU to cement a common trade policy next year.
The EU is working feverishly to establish itself as the top trading partner and investor in Latin America, taking advantage of the region’s economic and political weakness as it struggles to find its feet following decades of instability and the boom-and-bust era of the 1990s. During that decade, international banks with swollen coffers flooded the region with capital, without first ensuring adequate structural reform in the Latino countries. The result was a blowout of debt in most of their economies to the point that they now kneel at the altar of their benefactors, pleading for favorable back-out terms. This has put many countries in the region at the mercy of anyone who offers the incentive of continuing investment, grants or financial aid, without significant strings attached. Thus the EU finds itself in a position of considerable power.
The EU is currently Mercosur’s main trading partner, accounting for 33 percent of its trade imports and 30 percent of its total exports in 1998. Overall trade between the two blocks that year exceeded 49 billion euros (us$57 billion).
The establishment of a cross-Atlantic free trade area would enable a greater flow of EU exports, which are currently subject to high duties and internal taxes. According to EU officials, the EU-Mercosur free-trade area could result in additional annual profits of more than 6 billion euros (us$7 billion) for the Europeans and nearly 5 billion (us$5.9 billion) for Mercosur.
In the European Commission’s June 1999 report “European Union, Latin America, Caribbean—Advancing Together,” it is noted that the driving force in Euro-Latin trade in the past decade has been a comprehensive document generated in 1994 “under the impetus of the German presidency.” As the Trumpet has previously reported, it happens so often that where Germany leads, Europe follows. It comes as no real shock that German exports and imports to and from Latin America far outweigh those of all other EU member states.
Europe’s exports to Latin America grew by 164 percent between 1989 and 1999, while Latin exports to EU countries rose by 29 percent. Over half of all of Latin American financial aid came from EU coffers. The EU is also the largest donor of bilateral official development assistance to the region. Not surprisingly, the same EU report boldly claimed that, as a “partner of the European Commission, the eib [European Investment Bank] has become one of the principal European players on the subcontinent.”
In perhaps the most powerful statement in the report, the EU declared, “The European alternative can thus represent a viable counterweight to what is sometimes perceived as excessive economic and political dependence.” The European Commission is referring to a dependency on the U.S.—Latin America’s largest trade partner until being overtaken by the EU.
In May 1962, Herbert Armstrong’s Plain Truth magazine declared, “[T]he United States is going to be left out in the cold as two gigantic trade blocs, Europe and Latin America, mesh together and begin calling the shots in world commerce.”
The Plain Truth cautioned its readers in its April 1966 issue, “Can you see why we warn readers that the Latin American Common Market and the Central American Common Market are dangerously close to becoming partners with the European Common Market?
“Can you see these giant combines are dangerously close to turning their backs on America and Britain, once and for all? Can you see why we warn you that the Nazis—hiding out all over South America—are dangerously close to rising again …?”
The facts are in! The passage of time has proved Mr. Armstrong absolutely right! The old generation of underground Nazis is now dying out. But their Latin American legacy lives on, being passed to the men in gray flannel suits who continue to traverse the Atlantic above ground in pursuit of their global corporatist empire.
The Vatican Connection
Let us now note the role that religion is playing in this partnership.
Catholic roots in South America go back to the discovery of America in the 15th century, when the Vatican-inspired evangelization of the entire Western hemisphere was set in motion. Still, what so many foreign-policy gurus failed to see during the Cold War was that religion would be the force that subsumed the empty, godless ideology of communism, with its abject failure to promise any vision beyond a limited life of hard labor for little return.
It took the right man at the right moment to bring that point powerfully home to foreign-policy circles around the world. The man was Karol Wojtyla, a Polish candidate for the papacy; the moment was just when the strain of forcing a moribund economy to compete with the power of the mighty U.S.’s free economy began to show cracks in the ussr’s armor. The rest is history. But of particular note is that this Polish pope chose Mexico as the object of his first overseas visit upon gaining office in 1978.
Immediately upon his ascension to the papal throne, Pope John Paul ii commenced a campaign to rid the church in Latin America of the liberalism that had penetrated it under Communist influence. He started at the U.S. southern border and worked south from there. By the end of the century he had achieved his aim. With the liberals largely removed, the Vatican had consolidated Latin America’s most powerful link with Europe: the force of religion.
South America is the only continent on Earth dominated by a single universal religion—Roman Catholicism. The fear of purgatory for the mass of Catholics is much more potent than is the fear of deprivation or loss in this present life. This gives the Vatican powerful control over the collective minds of its Latino adherents.
The Vatican is fully cognizant of the fact that more than half of the world’s Roman Catholics live in Latin America! Pope John Paul ii recognizes the centuries-old power and influence that Catholicism had upon the Spanish-Portuguese world. During his tenure of office, the present pope has visited almost every country in South America. He instigated a great new wave of evangelization in the region, perhaps the most concentrated effort in centuries to call the sheep back to the Roman fold. He has traversed backward and forward across the Latino zone in an effort to stabilize the region in preparation for the fulfillment of his vision of a revived “Holy” Roman colonial empire.
No geographic area outside of Europe is more aligned with the Vatican today than the Mercosur countries. With an office in every Latino country, the Holy See maintains a dominant and influential presence in the region. “To speak of Latin America means to recognize ourselves in a singular fraternity that is based on common origins,” said Guzman Carriquiry, undersecretary of the Pontifical Council for the Laity. “Our roots are Christian. Our culture is Christian. Catholicism will be the decisive factor for national construction and for Latin America’s integration in world globalization” (Zenit, April 2).
And now, after nine rounds of meetings led by the EU, what began as an effort by the underground, post-war Nazi movement to connect Latin America with Europe has steadily metamorphosed into a partnership centered upon “social similarities”—a recognition of the strength of the religious connection to the Catholic Church.
The EU and Latin America are more than just a trade duo. They are a religious, commercial and political partnership—and their time is ripe.
Where Is It Leading?
Remember, while Germany still lay in the ashes of defeat following World War ii, Herbert Armstrong warned that it would again rise to power beneath the cloak of a uniting Europe. Looking through the lens of Bible prophecy, he boldly declared for almost 60 years that Europe would again dominate the region of Latin America, politically and economically, while the Vatican would exercise ultimate religious influence.
Watch the EU assault on Latin America continue and intensify. A signed agreement is expected in 2004.
We live in tumultuous times—times of great geopolitical earthquakes as old alliances between world powers collapse and new ones form. The Trumpet, in the tradition of Herbert Armstrong, continues to report these events as they happen. The whole world needs to know what is happening between Europe and Latin America! With Herbert W. Armstrong gone, only the Trumpet can tell you.
Britain and America have failed to heed the warning of the lone voice crying out in a wilderness of geopolitical confusion. They have continued in national disobedience to the supreme laws of God. As a result of their failure, their birthright promises are being stripped away; the Eurocombine, supported by a great false church, is prophesied to soon stride atop the world and enslave the English-speaking nations (Rev. 17).
Their only hope is to heed God’s end-time warning, yield themselves to His power and turn to God in national repentance and obedience.