This is one of those strange stories that came out of the blue; I certainly didn't expect it, and I doubt the many (and I mean many) people who spotted this story and passed it along expected it either. In a nutshell, the Vatican's own prosecutors and police have raided the powerful Vatican Secretariat of State:
Needless to say, this one has my Suspicion Meter all the way past the red zone and into the purple zone. And needless to say, I have quite a lot of our trademark High Octane Speculation to offer in its regard. Rather, I might qualify today's offering as High Octane Suspicions rather than High Octane Speculation. Let's take note of a few things:
.- Vatican prosecutors seized documents and electronic devices in a raid executed Tuesday at the offices of the most senior curial department.
According to a statement from the Holy See press office Oct. 1, the raid was conducted at the offices of the general affairs section of the Secretariat of State. The action was authorized by the Vatican City court's Promoter of Justice, Gian Piero Milano, and Adjunct Promoter of Justice Alessandro Diddi.
The documents and devices were taken in connection to an investigation following complaints brought last summer by the Institute for Religious Works (IOR) - commonly called the Vatican Bank - and the Office of the Auditor General concerning a series of financial transactions "carried out over time," the statement said.
The Secretariat of State is the central governing office of the Catholic Church and the department of the Roman Curia which works most closely with the pope. It is also responsible for the governance of the Vatican City state.
Since the promulgation of Pastor bonus, Pope John Paul II's 1988 apostolic constitution governing the organization and responsibilities of the Roman Curia, the Secretariat of State has been divided into two sections: the Section for General Affairs and the Section for Relations with States.
The deputy, or sustituto, who must be a bishop, acts as head of the Section for General Affairs, with responsibility for the day-to-day administration of governance for Vatican City, and handles all business not assigned to other curial departments. It also provides direct daily staffing service of the pope, including overseeing the facilitation of appointments within the Roman Curia, and manages relations with all foriegn ambassadors accredited to the Holy See.
As of November 2017, Pope Francis established a third section of the Secretariat, specifically to oversee the Vatican’s diplomatic corps, stationed around the world.
Cardinal Pietro Parolin has been the Secretary of State since October 2013. Archbishop Edgar Peña Parra is the current substitute. He was named to the position in 2018. (Emphasis added)
And that is the complete article, which is more informative than the Reuters version of the story. Notably, we're told next to nothing, other than that the raid was conducted in connection to suspicious transactions at the Vatican Bank.
However, before we get into my high octane suspicions, let's recall a few odd little incidents in the previous years that I've mentioned before on this website; most of these incidents not only involve issues of timing, but in my opinion are the "deep context" to whatever is going on inside the Vatican. For example, shortly after Jorge Cardinal Bergolio was elected pope as Francis I, you might recall that one of the first things he did was to appoint an accounting firm to be the firm of record for the Vatican Bank. But that accounting firm had some strange connections of its own. During a weekend visit a few years ago, former Assistant Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Catherine Austin Fitts and I did a little digging, and it turned out that firm was also the accounting-audit firm of record for - get this - Lloyd's of London and The Bank of International Settlements!(see Vatican Hires International Accounting Firm to Get Books in Order and
The only slightly ironical and humorous aspect of this story was that we were told this was all being done to make the notoriously corrupt Vatican bank "compliant" with international regulations regarding money laundering. Or to put it differently, the Vatican Bank didn't even rise to the level of "probity" of the formerly Nazi-infested Bank of International Settlements! Another big surprise there, given the Vatican bank's connections to the Loge Propaganda Due scandal, Michelle Sindona, Banco Ambrosiano and Roberto Calvi (remember him?) and all the other wondrous financial goings-on during the marvelous era of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International, Iran-Contra, the whole Inslaw-PROMIS scandal (which, among many others, involved people like Adnan Khashoggi (remember him?).
What's even more intriguing here is that this raid occurs in the same approximate time as the recent visits of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeio and US Attorney General William Barr to - you guessed it - Italy. We're told, of course, that this was in order to ascertain the Italian intelligence community's participation in the whole Russiagate fiasco, but I strongly suspect that there was more to it than that, and that we're looking at the other part of the story. It would be virtually impossible to deal with any aspect of financial transaction or intelligence gathering in Italy without involving the Vatican at some point. All this also comes at the time that the US and the Vatican are both wrestling with their ends of the global human trafficking scandals. With respect to the Epstein affair, it's now fairly well known that Epstein's network of contacts, as well as his own philosophical proclivities, involved him with transhumanists and people with deep connections to the information technology world, like the Maxwell sisters, whose father, Robert Maxwell, was mentioned in connection to the whole Inslaw-PROMIS scandal.
I keep mentioning that scandal because at some penultimate deep level, that's what I suspect we're dealing with here. PROMIS was rumored to have had the ability to track financial transactions (indeed, transactions of many sorts) in real time through a multitude of databases and in a multitude of computer languages. It also, in my opinion, could be used to track other kinds of "inventory", like humans through covert trafficking networks.
Interestingly enough, current US Attorney General surfaces in connection to the Inslaw-PROMIS affair, as according to some researchers he was peripherally involved in the scandal.
So we're left speculating: is the Vatican franchise of "the swamp" being drained here? Or conversely, are loose ends being tidied up?
I don't know about you, but I strongly suspect the latter.
See you on the flip side...