Who’s Behind it All?
I have been an avid Agatha Christie fan for years, amassing a large collection of most of her 80 plus works. I fell in love with the settings of as much as the cleverness of her mysteries, and was captivated by the insight of Miss Marple from my first read, Murder at the Vicarage. It was from Miss Marple that I learned to beware of those with charisma.
The latest title I’ve completed is one of her last books, considered by many to also be one of her worst, Passenger to Frankfurt. However I have found myself fascinated with this story written in 1970. It is more of an espionage story rather than a murder mystery, but it is not the characters, setting, or plot that captured my interest.
It is said Dame Agatha requested a variety of political writings as research for the book. Political writings amidst the turmoil of the late 60’s as war protests and other movements on college campuses and elsewhere took place. With every turn of the page I find myself thinking, “Wow that could actually be happening today.”
Here is a quote referring back to WWII: “One of the embassy wives, clever, intelligent woman, well educated. She was very anxious to go personally and hear the Fuhrer speak. I am talking, of course, of a time immediately preceding the nineteen thirty-nine war. She was curious to know what oratory could do. Why was everyone so impressed? And so she went. She came back and said, ‘It’s extraordinary. I wouldn’t have believed it. Of course I don’t understand German very well, but I was carried away, too. And I see now why everyone is. I mean, his ideas were wonderful…They inflamed you. The things he said. I mean you just felt there was no other way of thinking, that a whole new world would happen if only one followed him.'”
Very indicative of how a country or group of people can get caught up in a person. Afterall, if someone as vile as Adolph Hitler could captivate, well…
The book’s theme was about an attempt to “change the world” through a secret society made up of people from all aspects of life. Mrs. Christie described five aspects of the organization with, of course, money at the center. Today’s global warming concerns can serve as an example of the use of science in the plot. Any war needs arms, and drugs were used to weed out the weaker people who got addicted.
A – armaments
D – drugs
S – science
F – finance
J – ? (person yet unidentified)
What a fantastic idea. The most organized crime of all time. The youth of the world manipulated by the clever and charismatic to carry out the plan. An idea inspired in part by the rallying of college students in the 60s and early 70s in war protests. And much like the less publicized rallying of students today. Students who have become involved in political campaigns and elections in record numbers over the last couple of years. Students who lead boycotts of US corporations resulting in nothing short of corporate blackmail, all in the name of human rights or saving the environment.
The seemingly contrasting qualities of this quote from Mrs. Christie’s book exemplifies the motivation: “They want violence and they like violence. They don’t like the world, they don’t like our materialistic attitude. They don’t like a lot of our nasty ways of making money, they don’t like a lot of the fiddles we do. They don’t like seeing poverty. They want a better world.” How does someone buy into all that? Smooth-talking deception. The question remains, “Who’s behind it all?”
Pingback: Violence and a Better World « Coffee House Conversations