Sunday, 7 January 2007

A Very English Conspiracy

This evening I decided to take a break from researching the occult conspiracy- and headed over to South Wimbledon for a pint. I sit down at the same shrine-like spot where Miss X has been known to plant her behind, and rifle through the small collection of old paperbacks the landlord thoughtfully provides for his punters.

Being a cricket fan I notice Brian Johnston's biography, described- somewhat ridiculously- as 'a masterpiece' by the Daily Mail. Flicking through the first couple of chapters I come across some seriously interesting information: for persons such as myself anyway. Brian Johnston attended a prep school which was once based in Lord Palmerston's old house in East Sheen: not far from where I was then sat. Now it just so happens that Lord Palmerson was an early (nineteenth century) supporter of Zionism. In a letter to the British Ambassador to Constantinople in 1840, he wrote:

'There exists at the present time among the Jews dispersed over Europe, a strong notion that the time is approaching when their nation is to return to Palestine. . . . It would be of manifest importance to the Sultan to encourage the Jews to return and settle in Palestine because the wealth which they would bring with them would increase the resources of the Sultan's dominionsof Egypt . . . I have to instruct Your Excellency strongly to recommend [to the Turkish Government] to hold out every just encouragement to the Jews of Europe to return to Palestine.'

The name of Brian Johnston's prep school, which was once based in Palmerston's old house? Temple Grove. Coincidence, or esoterically significant? An 'Illuminati boot camp' after the fashion of Kurt Hahn's federal academies, perhaps? Don't know.

But what really grabbed my attention was a sad story from Johnners's childhood. (Brian Johnston, for anyone not in the know, was the legendary 'voice of cricket' on BBC radio's Test Match Special programme.) As the story goes, Brian and his family were bathing on the beach at Widemouth sands in Cornwall. Anne, Brian's sister, swam out too far and got into difficulties.
'Seeing this,' writes author Tim Heald, 'the Colonel [Brian's father] and a family cousin swam out to rescue her. It was arduous work and they were swimming against the tide... During the struggle, the Colonel began to slip behind and it was obvious that he was in serious trouble. Another of the party, Captain Scully... went back into the sea to help with the rescue. A rope was found from somewhere and Scully swam out towards the Colonel holding on to one end while the rest of the group stood on the shore holding on to the other end with the intention of pulling the Colonel to safety... Try as he might Scully could not reach the drowning man, and eventually the wretched Colonel drifted out to sea and out of sight.

'...An odd twist to this sad story was that a year or so later Mrs Johnston remarried. Her second husband was none other than the man who had failed to rescue the Colonel, Captain Marcus Scully.'

Draw your own conclusions.

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