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Having become increasingly disillusioned as member of the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy; I was thinking for myself far more than was mutually tolerable for my continued service, I was eventually honourably discharged in 1986 and immersed myself in left-leaning environmental politics. Within a few years I was working as an activist on two Greenpeace ships, the Sirius and rather inconsiderately named Greenpeace. It was a tough and stressful time and wrought with interpersonal difficulties. As might be expected in a small closed environment inhabited by strong minded individuals. After three campaigns it was time to move on.
I was still filled with energy and enthusiasm and was inspired by the Green Party’s strong showing in the European Elections and was moved to read the book The Truth Vibrations by their spokesperson, the erstwhile television presenter, David Icke, which further opened my eyes and mind. It was a time of quickening change and I felt like a tidal movement of people was about to engulf the political world and depose corrupt government. Unfortunately, this did not happen and I remember quite vividly the moment that the realisation dawned upon me as I sat watching an episode of the chat show, Wogan, on a friend’s tiny portable television. There was clearly something very wrong with the people watching. They behaved exactly like the audiences watching sitcoms being recorded; they responded not to their own thoughts and feelings but to cues. They were so well conditioned that they did not even need a production assistant to hold up cards telling them how to respond.
I can only imagine how David Icke felt as he walked out of the BBC Television Centre that night, but I felt ashamed and devastated.
It would be wrong to say that I had invested my hope in David Icke or a Green revolution but it had become clear that the greatest obstacle to saving humanity was humanity itself - they were simply beyond the reach of reason, having conspired in their own consumer programming.
A couple of years later in 1993, I was, for all intents and purposes, at a juncture in my life and was going through some old stuff and was looking at a book called something like, How to Change Your Life. I was quite literally wondering how things could change, when the phone rang. It was a friend from Greenpeace a few years earlier. They wanted me to go to work on another ship, the Gondwana, lying in Hamburg. I remembered the stress I had endured previously, but nonetheless decided to go and joined the ship in late August.
The Gondwana had been rusting in Aukland, New Zealand for several years since the declaration of the Antarctic as a World Park, and Greenpeace had decided to sell the ship as they no longer had any use for an icebreaker class vessel. I was employed along with others to renovate it to increase its sale value.
In many ways, it was like walking onto the Marie Celeste; the cupboards and freezer room were still full of food that was, in the main, quite edible - if a bit unexpected - there were huge chunks of unidentified frozen meat like volcanic rock formations. There were surprises to be found in lockers and cubbyholes every day.
I was allowed to use the first mate’s cabin, which was quite a luxury for a deckhand, but there were only a handful of people onboard and most were volunteers who were there for only a week or two. The ship’s library was a vast miscellany representing the whims and interests of dozens of former crew members. I found some books of the cartoons of Ron Cobb which though originating in the 1960s and 1970s were as apposite in 1993 as they are now.
But I also found another book, the title of which I cannot recall. I just remember that it had a red cover. I have tried to remember what it was called and have read many books since which could have been written before 1993 trying to find out.
I had thought up to this point that I was pretty politically astute, but what I read in this book truly terrified me. It spoke of a global conspiracy which transcended everything I thought I knew. It described the higher echelons of secret societies and a global agenda of a hitherto unimaginable scale. I could scarcely comprehend the enormity of what was being revealed. I began having nightmares but oddly not about what I was reading, they were about aliens.
One night, I was having one of these nightmares when I woke up. I opened my eyes but could not move. I was lying in my bunk facing the bulkhead and could see the light from the passageway reflected in the glossy, cream-coloured paint. There was a dark figure in the frame of the doorway. I tried to turn over to see who it was but was paralysed. Initially I felt terrified, but gradually I felt calm. Eventually, I fell asleep again, but I woke up with the clearest memory of what happened - not the usual trickling away of a dream.
One sunny day, the crew were taking their morning break as a cargo ship was trying to berth alongside us. The ship’s engines suddenly failed and it had no reverse thrust to stop. Its momentum carried it forward as the captain ordered both anchors to be dropped, but it was too late. The ship’s bow hit a crane on the quayside which toppled onto the one next to it which then also fell onto another crane. The last crane wobbled and for a moment looked like it would fall on top of us. I remember standing on the deck, frozen, staring at the spectacle, coffee half way to my agape lips, as our former neighbours crashed to the ground.
Within no time the whole area was swarming with police, ambulances, and journalists. The few people who had actually seen the events unfold were too shocked to speak - we sat huddled on the quayside watching the affray from afar - yet the journalists could be heard telling the emergency services what had happened. The newspaper headline that evening was, ‘Kran Domino Im Hafen’ and the media had managed to tell a convincing story about the incident without even talking to anybody who witnessed it. At first this was quite amusing, but years later it became quite an authentic metaphor.
From then on, the nightmares were not so intense and in some ways were quite amusing. I remember one in particular in which the aliens were like Laurel and Hardy or Abbot and Costello.
The book left me with a profound feeling of both fear and understanding. I thought I had kept it on the shelf in my cabin. When the Gondwana was finally sold, the crew who had been working on there were told that they could help themselves to any bits and pieces which remained and I took a few souvenirs. But I searched my cabin and went through every shelf in the library and drawer in the mess room trying to find either the Ron Cobb books or the book with the red cover.
When I returned to England, it felt like I was alone in the world with my newly discovered knowledge. It was difficult to start a conversation about a topic which had no point of reference and nobody took the slightest notice of me when I tried. And so it was until in April 2001, I watched the Jon Ronson television series Secret Rulers of the World. Only then did I become aware that the knowledge I had found was shared with people like David Icke and Alex Jones.
I began reading David Icke’s other books and listening to Alex Jones on my poor dial-up Internet connection and found that there were many others who were not oppressed by their ignorance. What happened next, in September 2001, became the defining and crystallising moment that consolidated many of the elements in The Secret Rulers of the World. The events of 9/11 opened a cleft out of which spilled the rotten horror of global truth. Not merely the destructive acts, but the subtext; the evil beneath, and psychological assault which followed, as well as the grand design which had been laid out before me in the book with the red cover.
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