Is It All a Conspiracy Theory?
Fort Knox, in Kentucky, is one of the most secure places on earth. This 109,000-acre United States Army fort is made up of 16,000 cubic feet of granite and 750 tons of reinforced steel. It is housed some of the most valuable documents in human history including The Magna Carta, The Declaration of Independence, and The Bill of Rights. But what about the Gold? Supposedly, Fort Knox is the home to 147 million ounces of gold. This is roughly 3% of all the gold ever mined in human history with a current value of $191.4 billion. With security measures including minefields, US army tanks and 22-ton vault door – it sure seems like it would be the best place to store our nations gold. How can we know for sure when the last audit done on Fort Knox was in 1953 during the Eisenhower administration?
Fort Knox Was Built to House Citizen’s Gold
Fort Knox, also known as the U.S. Bullion Depository was built in 1933 to house the increasing gold reserves from US citizens who were forced to turn in their gold bullion. The fort was finally completed in 1936. During 1933-1936 the gold reserves were held in Philadelphia and New York Assay Offices. When the fort was completed, the massive amount of gold needed over 500 trains to transport it to its new home.
Fort Knox used to be an important note in the mind of US citizens. Before 1971, the United States was on the gold standard. Fort Knox held the gold that back our currency and having such strict security measures gave the US citizens the peace of mind that the gold would always be there. Since President Nixon took us off the gold standard. Fort Knox hasn’t been such an important part of our economy. According to Ed Moy, the ex-director of the US Mint, the peak of Fort Knox gold storage was during World War II. The depository held 20,000 tons of the yellow metals. Today Moy claims that 4,500 tons remain. The remainder of the gold is held in New York Federal Reserve, Denver and the West Point storage vaults.
It Would Cost $60 Million to Audit Fort Knox
With such sources claiming that all the gold is accounted for, where do the conspiracies come from?
One such claim came from the Chinese government stating that they received a shipment of gold from the US that ended up being tungsten. I find this ironic, the Chinese are masters at making tungsten gold bar knock-offs and they are the ones claiming to have received fake gold from the US. This prompted political figures such as Ron Paul to press for access to Fort Knox. The Treasury responded to Ron Paul with a report dictating the process of authenticating the gold inside Fort Knox. According to the Treasury Department, it takes 30 minutes to authenticate 1 gold bar. If they had 400 people working full time authenticating it would take 6 months to accomplish. The report claimed it would cost the tax payers upwards of $60 million. After the 1953 audit, special tape was placed on the vaults to show if any forced entry had occurred. The only audits that have occurred since then are to check if the tape has any signs of forced entry. Does this mean that no one has seen the gold in 65 years?
Another reason to be suspicious is when the German government asked for the gold they were storing in the US to be delivered back to them. Our government told the Germans that it would take till the year 2020 to deliver their metal. Other governments that have asked for their metals back have claimed that it isn’t the same metal that was originally stored. Germany seemed to be fine with the delay.
Why Do We Store Other Country’s Gold?
In 1939 the US was still considered a neutral country. European nations thought the US would be a perfect place to store their gold until the conflict started by Germany was resolved. The US had a large ocean and although not the strongest nation militarily – it wasn’t weak either. World War II proved that European nations can be sacked. France is shining example of just how vulnerable waring nations can be. The loss of wealth could have been far worse if these nations didn’t take precautions and send us their gold. Today we live in the most peaceful time in the history of human beings. There is still plenty of struggle around the world, but developed nations don’t go to war with each other anymore in the traditional sense. War is not economical as free trade. The cost of storing developed nations gold is starting to outweigh the benefits of having it. There are cost on insuring and protecting the gold. This is one reason why Germany has decided to take back their gold and probably will not be the last. We’ll find out soon if we really have all the gold we claim to.