According to some observers, last year’s Bilderberg Meeting, held over 11-14 June, 2015 at the Interalpen Hotel, near the town of Telfs-Buchen in Austria, was a more significant event than the Group of Seven meeting that had just preceded it across the border in Germany. Bilderberg is “every bit as important as the G7”, claimed The Guardian’s (Jun. 08, 2015) lone correspondent, Charlie Skelton; if not a “much more decisive meeting place [ein viel entscheidenderes Treffen statt]”, wrote Thorsten Schmitt from Extrem News (May 30, 2015). Yet some of the Bilderberg meeting participants – the few that deigned to even speak or write about it – insisted that the 2015 gathering was a very interesting but ultimately benign occasion. Michael O’Leary, CEO of Irish airline Ryanair and newly appointed Bilderberg Steering Committee member, for example, after mocking claims it was a “big conspiracy” told Irish radio that his first Bilderberg meeting had been a “terrific experience” and “very educational.” Another first time participant, Trine Eilertsen, Political Editor of the Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten wrote that the “discussions and introductions” at Bilderberg were “very useful because participants spoke so freely.” But she also dismissed as “distant from reality”, a columnist writing in a rival publication, Aftenbladet (Jun. 13, 2015) who criticised her participation and considered it “naïve” of Eilertsen not to see anything sinister in a secret meeting of billionaires, politicians and journalists.
Such sharply conflicting assessments naturally raise the question as to what actually transpired at the 2015 event, behind closed doors at the sumptuous five-star Interalpen Hotel. Was the Telfs-Buchen meeting really on par with or even more important than the G7? If so, then why did O’Leary and Eilertsen not see it that way? What did they talk about? What was its political impact? Did mainstream media coverage of the event improve over the previous year? And how did the representatives from the alternative media fair in their attempts to penetrate Bilderberg secrecy and security? In this three part article we will try to answer these questions, and more, to try to shed some more light on the 2015 Bilderberg meeting.