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  • Posted November 13, 2008 by
    Access

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    Without help from U.S. industrialists, Hitler might never have been able to wage World War II.

     

     

    *While

    most Americans were appalled by the Nazis and the rearming of Germany

    in the 1930s, some of America's most powerful corporations were more

    concerned about making a buck from their German investments. Here are a

    few examples of how U.S. industrialists supported Adolf Hitler and Nazi

    Germany.*

     

     

     

     

    General Motors

     

     

     

     

    *•

    The Nazi connection: GM, which was controlled by the du Pont family

    during the 1930s, owned 80% of the stock of Opel AG, which made 30% of

    Germany's passenger cars.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Helping Hitler: When Hitler's panzer divisions rolled into France and

    Eastern Europe, they were riding in Opel trucks and other equipment.

    Opel earned GM a hefty $36 million in the 10 years before war broke

    out, but because Hitler prohibited the export of capital, GM reinvested

    the profits in other German companies. At least $20 million was

    invested in companies owned or controlled by Nazi officials.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    GM may have even been plotting against the Roosevelt administration.

    According to Charles Higham inhis book Trading With The Enemy, GM

    representatives met secretly with Baron Manfred von Killinger, Nazi

    Germany's West Coast chief of espionage, and Baron von Tippleskirsch,

    the Nazi consul general and Gestapo leader, in Boston on November 23,

    1937. The group "signed a joint agreement showing total commitment to

    the Nazi cause for the indefinite future," and proclaimed that "in view

    of Roosevelt's attitude toward Germany, every effort must be made

    to remove him by defeat at the next election. Jewish influence in the

    political, cultural, and public life in America must

    be stamped out. Press and radio must be subsidized to smear the

    administration," and a führer, perhaps Sen. Burton Wheeler of Montana,

    should be in the White House. Although the group tried to keep the

    agreement secret, Reprsentative John M. Coffee of Washington found out

    about it and had the entire text of the agreement printed in the

    Congressional Record in August 1942.*

     

     

     

     

    HENRY FORD, founder of the Ford Motor Company

     

     

     

     

    • The Nazi connection: Ford, an outspoken anti-Semite, was a big donor to the Nazi party.

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Helping Hitler: Ford allegedly bankrolled Hitler in the early 1920s, at

    a time when the party had few other sources of income. In fact, the

    Party might have perished without Ford's sponsorship. Hitler admired

    Ford enormously. In 1922, The New York Times reported, "The wall beside

    his desk in Hitler's private office is decorated with a large picture

    of Henry Ford. In the antechamber there is a large table covered with

    books, nearly all of which are translations of books written and

    published by Henry Ford." (Hitler actually borrowed passages from

    Ford's book The International Jew to use in Mein Kampf). The same year,

    the German newspaper Berliner Tageblatt, a Hitler foe,

    called on the American ambassador to investigate Ford's funding of

    Hitler, but nothing was ever done. Ford never denied that he had

    bankrolled the führer. In fact, Hitler presented Nazi Germany's highest

    decoration for foreigners, the Grand Cross of the German Eagle, to Ford.*

     

     

     

     

    THE CURTISS-WRIGHT AVIATION COMPANY

     

     

     

     

    • The Nazi connection: Employees of Curtiss-Wright taught dive-bombing to Hitler's Luftwaffe.

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Helping Hitler: When Hitler's bombers terrorized Europe, they were

    using American bombing techniques. The U.S. Navy invented dive-bombing

    several years before Hitler came to power, but managed to keep it a

    secret from the rest of the world by expressly prohibiting U.S.

    aircraft manufacturers from mentioning the technique to other

    countries. However, in 1934, Curtiss-Wright, hoping to increase sales

    of airplanes to Nazi Germany, found a way around the restrictions:

    instead of telling the Nazis about dive-bombing, it demonstrated the

    technique in air shows. A U.S. Senate investigation concluded, "It is

    apparent that American aviation companies did their part ot assist

    Germany's air armament."*

     

     

     

     

    STANDARD OIL

     

     

     

     

    *•

    The Nazi connection: The oil giant developed and financed Germany's

    synthetic fuel program in partnership with the German chemical giant,

    I.G. Farben.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Helping Hitler: As late as 1934, Germany was forced to import as much

    as 85% of it's pertroleum from abroad. This meant that a worldwide fuel

    embargo could stop Hitler's army overnight. To get around this threat,

    Nazi Germany began converting domestic coal into synthetic fuel using

    processes developed jointly by Standard Oil and I.G. Farben.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Standard taught I.G. Farben how to make tetraethyl-lead and add it to

    gasoline to make leaded gasoline. This information was priceless;

    leaded gas was essential for modern mechanized warfare. An I.G. Farben

    memo stated, "Since the beginning of the war we have been in a

    postition to produce lead tetraethyl solely because, a short time

    before the outbreak of the war, the Americans had established plants

    for us ready for production and supplied us with all available

    experience. In this manner we did not need to perform the difficult

    work of development because we

    could start production right away on the basis of all the experience

    that the Americans had had for years." Another memo noted that "without

    tetraethyl-lead, present methods of warfare would not be possible."

    (Trading With The Enemy)*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Still another I.G. Farben memo chronicled Stadard's assistance in

    procuring $20 million worth of aviation fuel and lubricants to be

    stockpiled for war: "The fact that we actually succeeded by means of

    the most difficult negotiations in buying the quantity desired by our

    government... and trasnporting it to Germany, was made possible only

    through the aid of the Standard Oil Co." (Note: According to a 1992

    article in the Village Voice, Brown Brothers Harriman was the Wall

    Street investment firm that "arranged for a loan of tetraethyl lead to

    the Nazi Luftwaffe" in a 1938. A senior managing partner of the firm

    was George Bush's father, Prescott Bush.)*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Standard Oil may also have undermined U.S. preparations for war. A

    congressional investigation conducted after World War II found evidence

    that Standard Oil had conspired with I.G. Farben to block American

    research into synthetic rubber, in exchange for a promise that I.G.

    Farben would give Standard Oil a monopoly on it's rubber-synthesizing

    process. The investigation concluded that "Standard fully accomplished

    I.G.'s purpose of preventing the United States production by dissuading

    American rubber companies from undertaking independant research in

    developing synthetic rubber processes."*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Standard Oil may have also helped distribute pro-Nazi literature in

    Central America. According to Charles Higham

    in Trading With The Enemy, "on May 5, 1941, the U.S. Legation at

    Managua, Nicaragua, reproted that Standard Oil subsidaries were

    distributing Epoca, a publication filled with pro-Nazi propaganda. John

    J. Muccio, of the U.S. Consulate, made an investigation and found that

    Standard was distributing this inflammatory publication all over the

    world."*

     

     

     

     

    INTERNATIONAL TELEPHONE AND TELEGRAPH

     

     

     

     

    *•

    The Nazi connection: IT&T owned substantial amounts of stock in

    several German armaments companies, including a 28% stake in

    Focke-Wolf, which built fighter aircraft for the German army.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Helping Hitler: Unlike General Motors, IT&T was permitted to

    repatriate the profits it made in Germany, but it chose not to.

    Instead, the profits were reinvested in the German armaments industry.

    According to Anthony Sutton, author of Wall Street and the Rise Of

    Hitler: "IT&T's purchase of substantial interest in Focke-Wolfe

    meant that IT&T was producing German planes used to kill Americans

    and their allies - and it made excellent profits out of the

    enterprise." IT&T also owned factories in the neutral countries of

    Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, and Sweden, which

    continued selling products to Axis countries.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    The relationship with the Nazis continued even after the U.S. entered

    the war. According to Charles Higham in Trading With The Enemy, the

    German army, navy, and air force hired IT&T to make "switchboards,

    telephones, alarm gongs, buoys, air raid warning devices, radar

    equipment, and 30,000 fuses per month for artillery shells used to kill

    British and American troops" after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. "In

    addition," Higham writes, "IT&T supplied ingredients for the rocket

    bombs that fell on London... high frequency radio equipment, and

    fortification and field

    communication sets. Without this supply of crucial materials, it would

    have been impossible for the German air force to kill American and

    British troops, for the German army to fight the Allies in Africa,

    Italy, France, and Germany, for England to have been bombed, or for

    Allied ships to have been attacked at sea."*

     

     

     

     

    CHASE NATIONAL BANK (later Chase Manhattan Bank)

     

     

     

     

    *•

    The Nazi connection: Chase operated branches in Nazi-occupied Paris and

    handled accounts for the German embassy as well as German businesses

    operating in France.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Helping Hitler: As late as 6 months before the start of World War II in

    Europe, Chase National Bank worked with the Nazis to raise money for

    Hitler from Nazi sympathizers in the U.S.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    According to Higham in Trading With The Enemy, "In essence, the Nazi

    government through the Chase National Bank offered Nazis in America the

    opportunity to buy German National Bank offered Nazies in America the

    opportunity to buy German marks with dollars at a discount. The

    arrangement was open only to those who wished to return to Germany and

    would use the marks in the interest of the Nazis." Americans who were

    interested had to

    prove to the Nazi embassy that they supported Hitler and his policies.*

     

     

     

     

    *•

    Cooperation with the Nazis continued even after Amercia entered the

    war. For example, Higham says, Chase offices in Paris remained open

    long after other American banks had shut down, and even provided

    assistance to the Nazis: "The Chase Bank in Paris was the focus of

    substantial financing of the Nazi embassy's activities throughout World

    War II with the full knowledge of Chase headquarters in New York. In

    order to assure the Germans of its loyalty to the Nazi cause... the

    Vichy branch of Chase at Chateau-neuf-sur-Cher were strenuous in

    enforcing restrictions against Jewish property, even going so far as to

    refuse to release funds belonging to Jews because they anticipated a

    Nazi decree with retroactive provisions prohibiting such a release."

    (Trading With The Enemy)*

     

     

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