The Council on Foreign Relations is the American sister institute of the Royal Institute of International Affairs (now Chatham House). While it proclaims to be a private organization with a non-partisan foreign policy, the policies debated and proposed by the CFR have reflected and shaped US foreign policy.

Most members of federal US administrations are either members of, or have been director of the Council on Foreign Relations. Notable examples include Dick Cheney"And it's good to be back at the Council on Foreign Relations. As Pete mentioned, I've been a member for a long time, and was actually a director for some period of time. I never mentioned that when I was campaigning for reelection back home in Wyoming -- (laughter) -- but it stood me in good stead."

Organizations involved in the funding of the institute include the Rockefeller Foundation, Carnegie Foundation and Ford Foundation

Periodicals Edit

The Council on Foreign Relations has a magazine that it publishes once in every two months entitled 'Foreign Affairs'. Editorial contributors (to name but a few) include Zbigniew Brzezinski, Wesley Clark, Philip Zelikow and other establishment figures.

CFR in their own words Edit

Some extracts from 'Continuing the Inquiry - the CFR from 1921 to 1996' by Peter Grose

"The Inquiry," to the select few who knew, this was the name of the fellowship of scholars, tasked to brief Woodrow Wilson about options for the postwar world. Through the winter of 1917-18, this band gathered in a discrete hideaway at 155th Street and Broadway in New York City, to assemble the data to make the world safe for democracy. The Notion of the Inquiry had been pressed upon President Wilson by Edward M. House, his trusted aide.

Walter Lippmann recruited the scholars and managed the Inquiry - "What we are on the lookout for is genius-sheer, startling genius and nothing else will do. We are skimming the cream of the younger more imaginative scholars." Colonel House set off for Europe shortly before the November 1918 armistice, his mission, to arrange the U.S presence at the peace conference. Wilson followed a month later, his presidential cruiser could only accommodate 23 Inquiry scholars. They were treated with suspicion by State department diplomats and assigned to the lower decks. At the peace conference, Whitney H Shepardson, Colonel Houses aide, wrote "to their surprise, the scholars found themselves assigned to work on multinational committees-not to study problems but to come up with practical solutions"

The historical record of the Paris Peace Conference focuses on the major powers. To the Inquiry scholars, however, these plenary sessions mattered little. They helped draw the borders of Post WW1 central Europe over tea at Quai d'Orsay, a more congenial venue than the Versailles' Hall of Mirrors. They floated ideas in the noncommittal style of an Oxford Common Room. In these unrecorded discussions the frontiers of central Europe were redrawn. Once the statesmen had gone, a little group of diplomats and scholars from Britain and the US convened at the Hotel Majestic on May 30, 1919, to discuss how their fellowship could be sustained. They proposed an Anglo-American Institute of International Affairs, with one branch in London, the other in New York. In June 1918 a discreet dining club had organised which called itself the Council on Foreign Relations. Headed by Elihu Root, it began with 108 members from banking, manufacturing, trading and finance together with many lawyers. Its purpose was to dine foreign visitors. As Shepardson put it, they "were concerned primarily with the effect that the war and treaty of peace might have on postwar business." However, for whatever reasons, by April 1919, members interest had dwindled and the Council went dormant. Inquiry scholars, returning from Paris, saw an opportunity.

The synergy of diplomatic expertise and high level contacts of Inquiry scholars and the untold resources of men of banking and law, produced the modern Council. The preliminary encounter between the different groups was February 3, 1921 and negotiations continued for five months. The Council rented 25 West 43rd Street and became a businessman's club of "a number of carefully chosen individuals." On July 29, 1921 a New York certificate of incorporation was prepared and the CFR came into being.

Many Council members called the Century Association 'their social club in New York'. Like the Inquiry, the Council determined not to publish its proceedings. "The Council never takes part in affairs for the general public" declared Walter Mallory. Council member Otto Kahn rented the Metroploitan Opera House for a grand lecture by Georges Clemenceau, wartime premier of France. For the rest of his visit to New York, the Council controlled all his appointments "lest special interest groups or political factions" attempt to use the visit to promote their own causes. Council founing fathers apppreciated that democracy involved public opinion, but wee uncertain about how such opinion was to be formed. They established a program of study groups (formal and discussion groups (informal) aimed at producing policy conclusions.

European Union Edit

  • Luigi Einaudi 1918
  • Agnelli and Cabiati 1920s
  • Coudenhove-Kalergi's 'Paneuropa' 1922
  • Aristide Briand 1930
  • Alexndre Marc and Denis Rougement 1930s
  • Philip Kerr 'Pacifism is not enough' 1935
  • Lionel Robbins 'National Planning and International Order' 1937
  • Clarence Streit 'Union Now' 1938
  • Robbins 'Economic Causes of War' 1939

Notable Supporters admitted by 1940

  • Beveridge, socialist
  • Bevin, socialist
  • RWG Mackay, socialist
  • Philip Kerr, imperialist
  • von Hayek, libertarian
  • James Meade, socialist
  • Ivor Jennings, lawyer
  • Spinelli, communist
  • Jean Monnet
  • Henry Frenay

Federal Union Research Institute established with Beveridge as the leader 1940s. The French equivalent lead by Frenay

The Manchester Guardian, a famous socialist liberal left publication (J A Hobson, Norman Angell, Noel Bailsford), supported the Federal Union plan, as did the New Statesman (socialist) and the Times (conservative), they all wrote endorsements.

Rhodes Trustees 2012Edit

  • Dr John Hood (New Zealand & Worcester 1976), Chair

Chair of the Rhodes Trustees since 1 December 2011.  President and CEO, Robertson Foundation. Director, BG Group. Chairman, Study Group, Matakina Limited, and Urenco Limited. Vice-Chancellor, University of Oxford, 2004-2009. Vice-Chancellor, University of Auckland 1999-2004. Educated: University of Auckland; Worcester College, Oxford.

For more information, please click here.

Lord Waldegrave retired as Chair in November 2011. For farewell tributes to him, click here, here, and here.

  • Mr Julian Ogilvie Thompson (Diocesan College, Rondebosch & Worcester 1953) 

Director, DeBeers Consolidated Mines Ltd, 1966-2006 (Chairman, 1985-97). Education: University of Cape Town; Worcester College, Oxford. Anglo American Corporation of South Africa, Ltd., 1956-2002: Chairman, 1990-2002. Vice-Chairman, First National Bank Ltd., 1977-90. Served since 2002.

  • Professor Sir John Bell (Alberta & Magdalen 1975)

Regius Professor of Medicine, University of Oxford, since 2002. Student of Christ Church, Oxford, since 2002. Education: University of Alberta; Magdalen College, Oxford. Fellow, Magdalen College, 1990-2002. Founder, Oxford's Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics (1993). Served since 2002.

  • Mr Michael McCaffery (Pennsylvania & Merton 1975)

CEO, Makena Capital Management. Education: Princeton University, Stanford University, Merton College, Oxford. President and CEO, Stanford Management Co., 2000-2006. Director, KB Home, C3 and RS Investments. Advisory boards of Accel Ventures, Sageview Capital and Silver Lake Partners.  Served since 2008.

  • Professor Ngaire Woods (New Zealand & Balliol 1987)

Professor of International Political Economy, University of Oxford. Founder and Director of the Global Economic Governance Programme, University College, Oxford. Inaugural Dean of the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford. Education: University of Auckland, Balliol College, Oxford. Served since November 2009.

  • Mr Dominic Barton (British Columbia & Brasenose 1984)

Global Managing Director, McKinsey & Company, since 2009. Education: University of British Columbia; Brasenose College, Oxford. McKinsey's Chairman for Asia, 2004-2009, based in Shanghai; led McKinsey’s office in Korea, 2000-2004. Member, Brookings Institution Foreign Policy Leadership Committee; Asian Development Bank Advisory Group on Human Resources Management. Chairman, International Advisory Committee to the President of South Korea on National Future and Vision. Served since June 2010.


  • Mr Don Gogel (New Jersey & Balliol 1971)

President & CEO, Clayton Dubilier & Rice, New York. Education:  Harvard College; Balliol College, Oxford; Harvard Law School. With Clayton Dubilier & Rice, New York, since 1989; CEO since 1998. Chairman of the Global Steering Committee (now Development Committee), Rhodes Trust, since 2007. Managing Diretor, Kidder Peabody & Co, 1985-1988. Co-chairman, Cancer Research Institute, New York. Senior Vice-Chairman and Trustee, Mount Sinai Medical Center. Member, Dean’s Council, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard University. Served since June 2010.

  • Professor Margaret MacMillan, OC

Warden, St Antony’s College, Oxford, since 2007. Education: University of Toronto; St Hilda's College, Oxford (Honorary Fellow, 2007) and St Antony's College, Oxford (Honorary Fellow, 2003). Provost of Trinity College and Professor of History, University of Toronto, 2002-2007. History Department, Ryerson University, Toronto, 1975-2002. Member, Awards Council of the Queen's Anniversary Trust; board, Mosaic Institute; board, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism; editorial boards. Served since June 2010.

  • Mr John McCall MacBain (Quebec & Wadham 1980)

Founder and President, McCall MacBain Foundation and Pamoja Capital.   Education: McGill University; Wadham College, Oxford; Harvard Business School.  Founder, President and CEO, Trader Classified Media, 1987-2006. Chairman, European Climate Foundation, since 2008. Land and sea commercial pilot. Served since June 2010.

  • H. E. Mr Festus G. Mogae

President of Botswana, 1998-2008. Education: University College, Oxford (Honorary Fellow, 2003); University of Sussex (Honorary Fellow, 2009). Vice-President of Botswana, 1992-1998. Previously with International Monetary Fund, Bank of Botswana, and Botswana civil service.  Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership, 2008. Légion d'honneur, France, and other honours. Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General on Climate Change. Served since June 2010.

  • Mr Narayana Murthy

Founder-Chairman, Infosys, and former Chairman of the Indian Rhodes Scholarships selection committee. Education: National Institute of Engineering, University of Mysore. Founded and CEO, Infosys, 1981-2002; Chairman of the Board and Chief Mentor, Infosys, since 2002. Board member, Unilever, HSBC, Ford Foundation, UN Foundation, Cornell University, Wharton School, Singapore Management University, Indian School of Business, Hyderabad, Indian Institute of Management Technology, Bangalore, and INSEAD. Chairman, Rhodes Scholarships Selection Committee for India, 2005-2009. Padma Vibhushan, India; Légion d'honneur, France; and other honours. Served since June 2010.

  • Ms Karen Stevenson (Maryland & Magdalen 1979)

Senior Counsel, Litigation Practice Group, Buchalter Nemer, Los Angeles. Education: University of North Carolina (Morehead Scholar); Magdalen College, Oxford; Stanford Law School. Extensive experience in management, education, and law. Secretary of Rhodes Scholarship US District 16 selection committee (Southern California and Arizona). Served since June 2010.

  • Mr John Wylie, AM (Queensland & Balliol 1983)

Managing Director and Head of Corporate Advisory for Lazard, Australia, since 2007. Education: University of Queensland; University of Oxford. Co-founder, Carnegie, Wylie & Company, 2000; acquired by Lazard in 2007. Investment banking experience in London, New York, Melbourne, since 1985. Chairman of Melbourne Cricket Ground Trust (chaired MCG Redevelopment Committee for 2006 Commonwealth Games) and Victorian Olympic Council’s Finance Committee. Member, Business Advisory Council, Said Business School, University of Oxford; Board, University of Queensland Endowment Fund; Finance Committee, Melbourne Grammar School. Served since June 2010.

  • Dame Helen Ghosh DBE

Permanent Secretary, UK Home Office, since January 2011. Permanent Secretary, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, 2005-10. Education: BA (Modern History), St Hugh's College, Oxford; MLitt (6th century Italian history), Hertford College, Oxford. Since 1979, a variety of posts in local government finance, housing, urban regeneration, the Cabinet Office (including the Efficiency Unit and the Machinery of Government Secretariat), and HM Revenue and Customs. Chairman of the Blackfriars Overseas Aid Trust since 1999. Served since March 2011.

Globalists agreeing on secrecyEdit

From Mr. R. W. G. MACKAY, M.P. To the Editor of The Continental Daily Mail.

14th October, 1948.

SIR,—The question of a European Union and of a European Assembly is very much to the fore, but there are the widest divergences of views with regard to both, and it is important in the discussion of these subjects that we should be clear as to what we are talking about.

The International Committee for Movements for European Union recently made proposals which the French Government subsequently put before the British, the Dutch and the Belgians; and at Interlaken a large number of Members of Parliament from all countries met together and drafted proposals for a European Assembly.

The terms of reference for the Assembly in the French proposals are six. Three of these are:—

1.—To consider practical measures to secure the progressive, political and economic integration of Europe. 2.—To study the constitutional, economic and social problems inherent in the creation of a European Union. 3.—To make recommendations for action in regard to the above matters to the Governments of the participating nations and to appropriate inter-Governmental agencies.

The resolution of the Interlaken Plan provides that the Assembly be asked to submit to the Governments proposals relating to immediate practical measures to be taken to bring about the economic and political union of Europe, and to prepare and draft a multilateral agreement to implement such measures.

If the French Government proposals mean what they say, what is the difference? Both want the Assembly to consider practical measures to secure the political and economic integration of Europe.

The Interlaken Plan does not confer on the Assembly constitution-making powers. Any proposals it makes must be submitted to the respective Governments for their acceptance or rejection.

If recommendations for action are to be made for a European Union, some document, be it a memorandum, a constitution or a treaty, must be prepared.

A European Union means only one thing, that is, what it says. The union of England and Scotland is one example; that was a complete merger of the Governments of the two countries.

The word "union" excludes alliances, associations of nations like the League and UNO, Councils of Foreign Ministers or such co-operative arrangements as are provided by the Brussels Pact and the Paris Agreement.

In none of these cases do the States surrender to a new State any of their powers of government and the word "union" presupposes such surrender.

If advisory bodies were good enough today, the League would have succeeded, and UNO would be meeting with better success.

The phrase "European Union" was defined at Interlaken in terms of a Parliament of Western Europe and a Government with power over such matters as currency, defence and economic planning.

The merit of the Interlaken proposals lies in the fact that, unofficial though the Congress was, the 200 Members of Parliament present, with one dissentient, agreed on a clear plan for a European Union, and a statement of the principles which set out some of the principal matters which any assembly would have to consider.

All of these are questions which must be faced by any European Assembly, and while it won’t have constitution-making powers, any plan or recommendations as envisaged by The Hague resolutions, or by the French proposals, must be in the nature of a constitution.

There are three fields in which co-operation (or activities) is needed—defence, economic and political.

In the field of defence we already have a functional approach, the ad hoc body being the organisation under the Brussels Treaty.

In the economic field we already have the O.E.E.C., an ad hoc body for dealing with the economic problems of Western Europe.

The only field in which nothing is being done is the political field. Therefore any assembly must deal with the political question of European Union, for which there can be no ad hoc bodies, and no functional, or step by step, approach.

Yours, etc.,

House of Commons.


Would Britain agree to a joint Budget with France?

To the Editor of The Continental Daily Mail.

19th October, 1948.

SIR,—The letter of my friend Mr. R. W. G. Mackay, M.P., in your issue of October 14 bears the charming simplicity of irresponsibility.

But do such views further the cause of European Union or do they not, on the contrary, help to organise public opinion against it, because of the unpractical nature of the proposals put forward?

The idea of a complete federation as he put it forward at the Interlaken Conference, in which, for instance, Great Britain and France would have the same relation to one another in a European Federation as Texas and Arizona in the United States of America, is complete moonshine as an immediate practical proposal.

I challenge him to get the support of one single member of his party in the present Cabinet for such a policy.

Can we see England pooling her financial resources and having a joint budget with France at the present moment?

Would the British taxpayer, who pays his heavy taxes loyally, agree to being taxed still further to compensate for the continual mismanagement of French finances and the individual Frenchman's reluctance to pay his fair share of taxation?

Can we see England agreeing to any change in her monarchy, because of a majority against it among her Continental colleagues?

The way to further the ideal of greater European Unity is to advocate immediate practical steps by which greater co-operation between European countries can be achieved.

That is the line that has so far been taken by the International Committee for the Movements for European Union, and which was supported by the French and Belgian Governments in the modest proposals for a European Deliberative Assembly.

In Western Europe a complete pooling of military resources is being realised. Step by step main economic developments can be planned so as to achieve effective co-ordination of labour, plant, and materials.

This will enormously increase production and prosperity. But any Union that would gradually result could only be in a loose federation, with real autonomy for each of its members.

In fact, the British Empire is an ideal for such a future Union. It has no rigid written constitution. Every member is free to contract out. There is complete local autonomy that ensures respect for the historical background and customs of each member.

If the Europe of the future can achieve the same degree of unity as the British Empire, then European Union will have become a practical reality.

Yours, etc.,

99a, Park Lane, London

(present address: Hotel de Bergues, Geneva).


Links Edit

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