ce399 | research archive: (anti)fascism

CIA Knew Where Eichmann Was Hiding, Documents Show (NYT 6/7/2006)

Posted in Uncategorized by ce399 on 25/05/2012

The Central Intelligence Agency took no action after learning the pseudonym and whereabouts of the fugitive Holocaust administrator Adolf Eichmann in 1958, according to C.I.A. documents released Tuesday that shed new light on the spy agency’s use of former Nazis as informants after World War II.

The C.I.A. was told by West German intelligence that Eichmann was living in Argentina under the name Clemens — a slight variation on his actual alias, Ricardo Klement — but did not share the information with Israel, which had been hunting for him for years, according to Timothy Naftali, a historian who examined the documents.

Two years later, Israeli agents abducted Eichmann in Argentina and flew him to Israel, where he was tried and executed in 1962. The Eichmann papers are among 27,000 newly declassified pages released by the C.I.A. to the National Archives under Congressional pressure to make public files about former officials of Hitler’s regime later used as American agents.

The material reinforces the view that most former Nazis gave American intelligence little of value and in some cases proved to be damaging double agents for the Soviet K.G.B., according to historians and members of the government panel that has worked to open the long-secret files.

Elizabeth Holtzman, a former congresswoman from New York and member of the panel, the Nazi War Crimes and Japanese Imperial Government Records Interagency Working Group, said the documents showed that the C.I.A “failed to lift a finger” to hunt Eichmann and “force us to confront not only the moral harm but the practical harm” of relying on intelligence from ex-Nazis.

The United States government, preoccupied with the cold war, had no policy at the time of pursuing Nazi war criminals. The records also show that American intelligence officials protected many former Nazis for their perceived value in combating the Soviet threat.

But Ms. Holtzman, speaking at a news briefing at the National Archives on Tuesday, said information from the former Nazis was often tainted both by their “personal agendas” and their vulnerability to blackmail. “Using bad people can have very bad consequences,” Ms. Holtzman said.

She and other group members suggested that the findings should be a cautionary tale for intelligence agencies today. As head of the Gestapo’s Jewish affairs office during the war, Eichmann put into effect the policy of extermination of European Jewry, promoting the use of gas chambers and having a hand in the murder of millions of Jews.

Captured by the United States Army at the end of the war, he gave a false name and went unrecognized, hiding in Germany and Italy before fleeing to Argentina in 1950. Israeli agents hunting for Eichmann came to suspect that he was in Argentina but did not know his alias. They temporarily abandoned their search around the time, in March 1958, that West German intelligence told the C.I.A. that Eichmann had been living in Argentina as Clemens, said Mr. Naftali, of the University of Virginia.

The West German government was wary of exposing Eichmann because officials feared what he might reveal about such figures as Hans Globke, a former Nazi government official then serving as a top national security adviser to Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, Mr. Naftali said.

In 1960, also at the request of West Germany, the C.I.A. persuaded Life magazine, which had purchased Eichmann’s memoir from his family, to delete a reference to Mr. Globke before publication, the documents show.

Ironically, in view of the information the C.I.A. received in 1958, documents previously released by the C.I.A. showed that it was surprised in May 1960 when the Israelis captured Eichmann. Cables from the time show that Allen Dulles, the C.I.A. director, demanded that officers find out more about the capture.

Since Congress passed the Nazi War Crimes Disclosure Act in 1998, the Interagency Working Group has worked to declassify more than eight million pages of documents. Norman J. W. Goda, an Ohio University historian who reviewed the C.I.A. material, said it showed in greater detail than previously known how the K.G.B. aggressively recruited former Nazi intelligence officers after the war.

In particular, he said, the documents fill in the story of the “catastrophic” Soviet penetration of the Gehlen Organization, the postwar West German intelligence service sponsored by the United States Army and then the C.I.A. Mr. Goda described the case of Heinz Felfe, a former SS officer who was bitter over the Allied firebombing of his native city, Dresden, and secretly worked for the K.G.B.

Mr. Felfe rose in the Gehlen Organization to oversee counterintelligence, a Soviet agent placed in charge of combating Soviet espionage. The C.I.A. shared much sensitive information with Mr. Felfe, Mr. Goda found. A newly released 1963 C.I.A. damage assessment, written after Mr. Felfe was arrested as a Soviet agent in 1961, found that he had exposed “over 100 C.I.A. staffers” and caused many eavesdropping operations to end with “complete failure or a worthless product.”

The documents also provide new information about the case of Tscherim Soobzokov, a former SS officer who was the subject of a much-publicized deportation case in 1979 when he was living as an American citizen in Paterson, N.J. He was charged with having falsified his immigration application to conceal his SS service, which ordinarily would have barred his entry.

But the charge was dropped when a C.I.A. document turned up showing that he had disclosed his SS membership. The newly declassified records show that he was employed by the C.I.A. from 1952 to 1959 despite “clear evidence of a war crimes record,” said another historian at the briefing, Richard Breitman of American University.

Because it valued Mr. Soobzokov for his language skills and ties to fellow ethnic Circassians living in the Soviet Union, the C.I.A. deliberately hid details of his Nazi record from the Immigration and Naturalization Service after he moved to the United States in 1955, Mr. Breitman said. But Mr. Soobzokov ultimately did not escape his past. He died in 1985 after a pipe bomb exploded outside his house. The case has never been solved.



House Panel Told of Four Shots at #Kennedy (NYT 22/12/1978 Pg A16) pdf file

Posted in Uncategorized by ce399 on 23/05/2012


According to Mae Brussell, the LA Times and SF Chronicle made this a front page story, but the NYT, in typical fashion, buried it on A16.

NYT’s Editorial Page Admits Many US #Police are Poorly Trained and Supervised

Posted in Uncategorized by ce399 on 11/05/2012

Mere Tinkering With a Bad Program

The Obama administration announced last month plans to repair Secure Communities, the program that compels state and local police to join its wide and expanding hunt for illegal immigrants. From now on, when illegal immigrants are stopped for traffic violations by local police, Immigration and Customs Enforcement will consider detaining and deporting them only after they have been convicted, not before.

In theory, this minor policy shift could reduce the number of people arrested on a pretext and held for deportation. But that’s unlikely. And it doesn’t fix the fundamental flaws in a discredited program.

The administration has faced fierce criticism from law-enforcement officials and immigrant advocates for ensnaring far too many minor offenders and noncriminals as it has rapidly expanded Secure Communities and ramped up deportations to a record pace of 400,000 a year. It contends that most are criminals, though that still includes many minor offenders.

Last June, the leader of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, known as ICE, issued memos directing officials to exercise “prosecutorial discretion” — to refrain from pursuing people who pose no threat to public safety or national security. To clear up clogged immigration courts, the administration announced in November that it would review the backlog of about 300,000 pending deportation cases to see if discretion could apply to low-priority cases there as well. But its promises have not led to any significant change. As of last month, ICE had reviewed nearly 228,000 cases and closed only about 3,000 of them.

That’s the problem with “discretion” and Secure Communities — as long as the government outsources the initial decision on whom to stop and pull over to local police officers, many of them poorly trained and supervised, the danger of harassment continues. Trust is eroded in immigrant communities when people are too fearful to report crimes and cooperate with the police. That flaw is not going to be fixed by tweaking the detention policy.

It’s telling that the policy change on traffic offenses came just two days after the oral argument in the Supreme Court on Arizona’s abusive immigration law. Paul Clement, the attorney arguing for Arizona, aptly pointed out a contradiction in the Obama administration’s challenge to the law: “The federal government doesn’t like this statute, but they are very proud of their Secure Communities program.” The administration is trying to have it both ways, attacking local crackdowns on defenseless immigrants while entangling state and local police in the same cruel mission.


American Swastika: The Shocking Story of Nazi Collaborators in Our Midst from 1933 to the Present Day RIP #CharlesHigham

Posted in American Fascism by ce399 on 10/05/2012

An excerpt from the introduction to the book American Swastika by Charles Higham

American Swastika/the Shocking Story of Nazi Collaborators in Our Midst from 1933 to the Present Day

Doubleday & Company, Inc., 1985 – Hard cover

 It was announced in the issue of Time magazine for December 19, 1983, that Hermann Abs, honorary chairman of the Deutsche Bank, had led a consortium that included the West German Government in purchasing at Sotheby’s, in London, the twelfth-century German illuminated manuscript The Gospels of Henry the Lion* for the equivalent of 11.7 million dollars, the highest auction price ever paid for an artwork. Time quoted Abs as saying, regarding his native country of Germany and in terms that may provide some bleak amusement to students of economic history, “Future generations will know the good side of our history—its more noble moments—and not just the horrible days of its recent past.” One has charitably to assume that the editors and researchers of Time magazine neglected to comment on this statement through an oversight, rather than through deliberate negligence. However, when the Emmy-Award-winning French film director Pierre Sauvage wrote in protest, the magazine refused to print his letter.

*The subject was a favorite of Heinrich Himmler.

Almost exactly a year before, on December 7, 1982, Time‘s rival publication, Newsweek, published, also without comment, the fact that the aforesaid Hermann Abs had been appointed head of a special banking council at the Vatican, heading up an investigation into the Ambrosiano and Calvi banking scandals which had engulfed the Italian economy and in which an archbishop from Chicago, Gregory Marcinkus, had allegedly been involved. I was struck at the time by the peculiarity of the fact that the Holy See had chosen to engage for this post the former personal banker of Adolf Hitler and head of the Deutsche Bank, which played an important role in the German economic despoliation of Nazi-occupied Europe. It was interesting also to note that Abs had been on the supervisory board of I.G. Farben, the Nazi industrial trust, at a time when a substantial sum was appropriated by that company for the construction of the rubber factory of Auschwitz.

 I drew the matter to the attention of Rabbis Marvin Hier and Abraham Cooper of the Wiesenthal Center of Holocaust Studies shortly after the Newsweek item appeared. The rabbis called a press, radio, and television conference at which the three of us expressed dismay at the appointment by the world’s most powerful religious leader, Pope John Paul II, of a former financier of Hitler who had at one time employed that selfsame pontiff in one of his subsidiary companies as a slave laborer in Poland. We made clear that the matter had been brought to the attention of the Papal Nuncio and the Vatican Secretary of State, who were weighing the matter at the time the press conference took place.

It was agreed that because of their great importance, the New York Times and The Wall Street Journal would be given special consideration in the matter. Hence, the rabbis and I gave the Times and the Journal interviews ahead of other media representatives. The Times‘s Ralph Blumenthal filed a lengthy story. It was editorially withdrawn just hours before press time and replaced by an innocuous column item. Similarly, the Journal prepared a lengthy story, including reports from Bonn, Berlin, and Rome, and again the story was pulled—this time in its entirety.

The result of the conference at the Wiesenthal Center was that there was some public discussion but, in effect the matter sank without a trace. When the aforementioned rabbis thereafter made an official visit to the Vatican, they were advised that they should not discuss the Abs issue while in audience with the Pope. They were advised privately, “The matter will take care of itself.” However, like most matters of its kind, it did not; in short, at the time of this writing, Herr Abs is still in office, as well as officially representing the West German Government in art purchases.

Trading With the Enemy: An Exposé of The Nazi-American Money-Plot 1933-1949 RIP #CharlesHigham

Posted in American Fascism by ce399 on 10/05/2012

Preface to the book Trading with the Enemy: An Exposé of The Nazi-American Money-Plot 1933-1949 by Charles Higham

Delacorte Press – 1983, hard cover


It would be comforting to believe that the financial Establishment of the United States and the leaders of American industry were united in a common purpose following the Day of Infamy, the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Certainly, the American public was assured that Big Business along with all of the officials of government ceased from the moment the war began to have any dealings whatsoever with the enemy. That assurance sustained the morale of millions of Americans who bore arms in World War II and their kinfolk who stayed at home and suffered the anguish of separation.

But the heartbreaking truth is that a number of financial and industrial figures of World War II and several members of the government served the cause of money before the cause of patriotism. While aiding the United States’ war effort, they also aided Nazi Germany’s.
I first came across this fact in 1978 when I was declassifying documents in the course of writing a biography that dealt with motion picture star Errol Flynn’s Nazi associations. In the National Archives Diplomatic Records Room I found numerous cross-references to prominent figures who, I had always assumed, were entirely committed to the American cause, yet who had been marked down for suspected subversive activities.

I had heard over the years about a general agreement of certain major figures of American, British, and German commerce to continue their relations and associations after Pearl Harbor. I had also heard that certain figures of the warring governments had arranged to assist in this. But I had never seen any documentary evidence of it. Now, pieces of information began to surface. I started to locate documents and have them declassified under the Freedom of Information Act—a painfully slow and exhausting process that lasted two and a half years. What I found out was very disturbing.

I had been born to a patriotic British family. My father had raised the first battalions of volunteers against Germany in World War I, and had built the Star and Garter Hospital at Richmond, Surrey, for ex-servicemen. He had been knighted by King George V for his services to the Crown and had been a member of Parliament and a Cabinet member. I feel a strong sense of loyalty to Britain, as well as to my adopted country, the United States of America. Moreover, I am part Jewish. Auschwitz is a word stamped on my heart forever.

It thus came as a severe shock to learn that several of the greatest American corporate leaders were in league with Nazi corporations before and after Pearl Harbor, including I.G. Farben, the colossal Nazi industrial trust that created Auschwitz. Those leaders interlocked through an association I have dubbed The Fraternity. Each of these business leaders was entangled with the others through interlocking directorates or financial sources. All were represented internationally by the National City Bank or by the Chase National Bank and by the Nazi attorneys Gerhardt Westrick and Dr. Heinrich Albert. All had connections to that crucial Nazi economist, Emil Puhl, of Hitler’s Reichsbank and the Bank for International Settlements.

The tycoons were linked by an ideology: the ideology of Business as Usual. Bound by identical reactionary ideas, the members sought a common future in fascist domination, regardless of which world leader might further that ambition.

Several members not only sought a continuing alliance of interests for the duration of World War II but supported the idea of a negotiated peace with Germany that would bar any reorganization of Europe along liberal lines. It would leave as its residue a police state that would place The Fraternity in postwar possession of financial, industrial, and political autonomy. When it was clear that Germany was losing the war the businessmen became notably more “loyal.” Then, when war was over, the survivors pushed into Germany, protected their assets, restored Nazi friends to high office, helped provoke the Cold War, and insured the permanent future of The Fraternity.

From the outset I realized that in researching the subject I would have to carve through an ice cream mountain of public relations. I searched in vain through books about the corporations and their histories to find any reference to questionable activities in World War II. It was clear that the authors of those volumes, granted the cooperation of the businesses concerned, predictably backed off from disclosing anything that would be revealing. To this day the bulk of Americans do not suspect The Fraternity. The government smothered everything, during and even (inexcusably) after the war. What would have happened if millions of American and British people, struggling with coupons and lines at the gas stations, had learned that in 1942 Standard Oil of New Jersey managers shipped the enemy’s fuel through neutral Switzerland and that the enemy was shipping Allied fuel? Suppose the public had discovered that the Chase Bank in Nazi-occupied Paris after Pearl Harbor was doing millions of dollars’ worth of business with the enemy with the full knowledge of the head office in Manhattan? Or that Ford trucks were being built for the German occupation troops in France with authorization from Dearborn, Michigan? Or that Colonel Sosthenes Behn, the head of the international American telephone conglomerate ITT, flew from New York to Madrid tot Berne during the war to help improve Hitler’s communications systems and improve the robot bombs that devastated London? Or that ITT built the Focke-Wulfs that dropped bombs on British and American troops? Or that crucial ball bearings were shipped to Nazi-associated customers in Latin America with the collusion of the vice-chairman of the U.S. War Production Board in partnership with Göring’s cousin in Philadelphia when American forces were desperately short of them? Or that such arrangements were known about in Washington and either sanctioned or deliberately ignored?

For the government did sanction dubious transactions—both before and after Pearl Harbor. A presidential edict, issued six days after December 7, 1941, actually set up the legislation whereby licensing arrangements for trading with the enemy could officially be granted. Often during the years after Pearl Harbor the government permitted such trading. For example, ITT was allowed to continue its relations with the Axis and Japan until 1945, even though that conglomerate was regarded as an official instrument of United States Intelligence. No attempt was made to prevent Ford from retaining its interests for the Germans in Occupied France, nor were the Chase Bank or the Morgan Bank expressly forbidden to keep open their branches in Occupied Paris. It is indicated that the Reichsbank and Nazi Ministry of Economics made promises to certain U.S. corporate leaders that their properties would not be injured after the Führer was victorious. Thus, the bosses of the multinationals as we know them today had a six-spot on every side of the dice cube. Whichever side won the war, the powers that really ran nations would not be adversely affected.

And it is important to consider the size of American investments in Nazi Germany at the time of Pearl Harbor. These amounted to an estimated total of $475 million. Standard Oil of New Jersey had $120 million invested there; General Motors had $35 million; ITT had $30 million; and Ford had $17.5 million. Though it would have been more patriotic to have allowed Nazi Germany to confiscate these companies for the duration—to nationalize them or to absorb them into Hermann Göring’s industrial empire—it was clearly more practical to insure them protection from seizure by allowing them to remain in special holding companies, the money accumulating until war’s end. It is interesting that whereas there is no evidence of any serious attempt by Roosevelt to impeach the guilty in the United States, there is evidence that Hitler strove to punish certain German Fraternity associates on the grounds of treason to the Nazi state. Indeed, in the case of ITT, perhaps the most flagrant of the corporations in its outright dealings with the enemy, Hitler and his postmaster general, the venerable Wilhelm Ohnesorge, strove to impound the German end of the business. But even they were powerless in such a situation: the Gestapo leader of counterintelligence, Walter Schellenberg, was a prominent director and shareholder of ITT by arrangement with New York—and even Hitler dared not cross the Gestapo.

As for Roosevelt, the Sphinx still keeps his secrets. That supreme politician held all of the forces of collusion and betrayal in balance, publicly praising those executives whom he knew to be questionable. Before Pearl Harbor, he allowed such egregious executives as James D. Mooney of General Motors and William Rhodes Davis of the Davis Oil Company to enjoy pleasant tête-à-têtes with Hitler and Göring, while maintaining a careful record of what they were doing. During the war, J. Edgar Hoover, Adolf A. Berle, Henry Morgenthau, and Harold Ickes kept the President fully advised of all internal and external transgressions. With great skill, he never let the executives concerned know that he was on to them. By using the corporate leaders for his own war purposes as dollar-a-year men, keeping an eye on them and allowing them to indulge, under license or not, in their international tradings, he at once made winning the war a certainty and kept the public from knowing what it should not know.

Because of the secrecy with which the matter has been blanketed, researching it presented me with a nightmare that preceded the greater nightmare of discovery. I embarked upon a voyage that resembled nothing so much as a descent into poisoned waters in a diving bell.

Why did even the loyal figures of the American government allow these transactions to continue after Pearl Harbor? A logical deduction would be that not to have done so would have involved public disclosure: the procedure of legally disconnecting these alliances under the antitrust laws would have resulted in a public scandal that would have drastically affected public morale, caused widespread strikes, and perhaps provoked mutinies in the armed services. Moreover, as some corporate executives were never tired of reminding the government, their trial and imprisonment would have made it impossible for the corporate boards to help the American war effort.

Therefore, the government was powerless to intervene. After 1945, the Cold War, which the executives had done so much to provoke, made it even more necessary that the truth of The Fraternity agreements should not be revealed.

I began with the conveniently multinational Bank for International Settlements in Basle, Switzerland. The activities of this anomalous institution in wartime are contained in Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau’s official diaries at the Roosevelt Memorial Library at Hyde Park, New York. Other details are contained in reports by the estimable Lauchlin Currie, of Roosevelt’s White House Economics Staff, whom I interviewed at length by telephone at his home in Bogotá, Colombia, to which city he had been banished, his citizenship stripped from him in 1956 for exposing American-Nazi connections. Another source lay in reports by the late Orvis Schmidt of Treasury Foreign Funds Control. German records were a useful source: Emil Puhl, vice-president and real power of the Reichsbank, a most crucial figure in The Fraternity’s dealings, had sent reports to his nominal superior, Dr. Walther Funk, from Switzerland to Berlin late in the war.

I turned to the matter of the Rockefeller-controlled Chase National Bank, which had conducted its business for the Nazi High Command in Paris until the war’s end. Evidently realizing that future historians might want to examine the highly secret Chase Bank files, Morgenthau had left subtle cross-references at Hyde Park that could lead future investigators to Treasury itself. I asked Ralph V. Korp of Treasury for access to the sealed Chase boxes, which had been under lock and key since 1945. Under the Freedom of Information Act, Mr. Korp obtained permission from his superiors to unseal the boxes and to declassify the large number of documents contained therein.

 From the Chase Bank it was a natural progression to Standard Oil of New Jersey, the chief jewel in the crown of the Rockefeller empire. Records of Standard’s dealings with the Axis were contained in the Records Rooms of the Diplomatic Branch of the National Archives were specially declassified. There, too, I found records of Sterling Products, General Aniline and Film, and William Rhodes Davis, whose FBI files were also most revealing. Documents on ITT and RCA were declassified. After waiting out the better part of the year, I was able to obtain them from the National Archives. Classified SKF Industries files are held in the Suitland, Maryland, annex of the Archives. General Motors matters are covered in the James D. Mooney public access collection of Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. The unpublished post–Pear Harbor diaries of Harold Ickes were invaluable; they are to be found in the manuscript room of the Library of Congress.

 The most elusive files were those on Ford in Occupied France. I could find no reference to them in the Treasury documentary listings. I knew that a Treasury team had investigated the company. I wondered if any member of the team could be alive.

Something jolted my memory. I remembered that a book entitled The Devil’s Chemists had appeared after World War II, written by Josiah DuBois, an attorney who had been part of the Treasury team at Nuremberg. The book was a harrowing account of the trial of the executives of I.G. Farben, the Nazi industrial trust, that showed Farben’s links to Wall Street.

I reread the book’s pages, looking for a clue. In it DuBois mentioned that he came from Camden, New Jersey. I decided to call information in the Camden area because I had a theory that, embittered by his experience in Germany and Washington, DeBois might have returned to live there after the war. It was only a hunch, but it paid off. In fact, it turned out that DuBois had gone back to his family law firm in Camden. I wrote to him, asking if he had records of the Ford matter. I figured that these might have been so important that he would have been given personal custody of them; that Secretary Morgenthau might not even have risked leaving them at Treasury.

DuBois replied that he believed he still had the documents, including the letters of Edsel Ford to his managers in Nazi-occupied France after Pearl Harbor, authorizing improvements in automobile and truck supplies to the Germans. After several weeks, DuBois wrote to say that he had searched his attic to no avail. The documents were missing. However, he would keep looking. 

He was admitted to a hospital where he underwent major surgery. Although enfeebled, he returned to the attic and began searching again. Compelled by a desire to disclose the truth, he pursued his task whenever he could find the strength. At last, when he was about to give up hope, he uncovered the documents.

However, he explained that the main files was so incendiary that he would not send it by mail or even by messenger—I was at liberty to examine it in his office. I was faced with a new dilemma. Since I was expecting delivery of an important set of documents, I couldn’t risk an absence from my house for a prolonged journey to the East. I said I would call him back.

I knew that Rutgers University was close to DuBois’s offices. I called the Law department and asked for a student researcher. Within an hour I received a call from a young man who needed work. I contacted DuBois’s secretary and arranged for the student to copy the documents of the premises. He did so; I sent an air courier to his home to pick them up. As I read the documents, the last details of the puzzle fell into place.

I have tried to write this book as dispassionately as possible, without attempting a moral commentary, and without, of course, intending implication of present corporations and their executive boards. It will be claimed that the people in this book, since they are dead, cannot answer and therefore should not be criticized. To that I would reply: Millions died in World War II. They, too, cannot answer.