Introduction: Examining and updating a number of different paths of inquiry, the program begins with discussion of the profound relationship between General Motors and Nazi Germany. GM profited handsomely from its association with the Third Reich, and that company’s support was essential to the Third Reich’s military conquests. A German financial firm that was a mainstay of the Nazi money machine—Deutsche Bank—may be realizing one of Hitler’s geopolitical goals by gaining control over much of Russia’s fossil fuels industry. Supplementing a long-standing inquiry by Mr. Emory, the program sets forth a recent development in the investigation into the assassination of President Kennedy. A dispute has erupted over the proposed release of documents belonging to the late Montreal attorney Louis Mortimer Bloomfield. Some JFK assassination researchers believe that Bloomfield was involved in the assassination. Bloomfield’s family is seeking to delay the release of Bloomfield’s personal papers to the public. Next, the program delves into the subject of the privatization of national security matters. The broadcast notes CIA alarm at the close relationship between the Blackwater security firm and the CIA. Concluding with competing conspiracy theories about the death of an Iranian scientist, the program highlights the various hypotheses about the death of Ardeshir Hassanpour. The American security firm Stratfor theorized that the Mossad (the Israeli foreign intelligence service) assassinated Hassanpour as part of a campaign to neutralize the Iranian nuclear development program. An Iranian dissident stated that Hassanpour was killed by the Iranian government because of his opposition to the regime of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and added that he was not a nuclear scientist. The Iranian government stated that Hassanpour died an accidental death.
Program Highlights Include: The enthusiasm of General Motors executives for Hitler’s regime; GM’s adherence to the Nazi racial doctrine; L.M. Bloomfield’s participation in Permindex—a probable intelligence front to which Garrison suspect Clay Shaw belonged; Blackwater’s cooption of contacts developed by the CIA.
1. Beginning with a subject Mr. Emory has covered for almost thirty years, the program examines part of the history of the collaboration between corporate America and Nazi Germany. The cooperation between General Motors and the Third Reich was extensive and essential to Hitler’s prosecution of the war. (For more about the subject of U.S. collaboration and Nazi Germany, see—among other programs—FTR#’s 29, 370, 435, 506, 511, as well as many of the books available at: http://spitfirelist.com/Books/books.html. Many of the same industrialists and financiers—including people associated with General Motors—tried to overthrow Franklin D. Roosevelt in a fascist coup in 1934. For more about this, see—among other programs—FTR#’s 448, 475, 481.) “ . . .. Nonetheless, GM and Germany began a strategic business relationship. Opel became an essential element of the German rearmament and modernization Hitler required to subjugate Europe. To accomplish that, Germany needed to rise above the horse-drawn divisions it deployed in World War I. It needed to motorize, to blitz — that is, to attack with lightning speed. Germany would later unleash a blitzkrieg, a lightning war. Opel built the 3-ton truck named Blitz to support the German military. The Blitz truck and its numerous specialized models became the mainstay of the Blitzkrieg. In 1935, GM agreed to locate a new factory at Brandenburg, where it would be geographically less vulnerable to feared aerial bombardment by allied forces. In 1937, almost 17 percent of Opel’s Blitz trucks were sold directly to the Nazi military. That military sales figure was increased to 29 percent in 1938 — totaling about 6,000 Blitz trucks that year alone. The Wehrmacht, the German military, soon became Opel’s No. 1 customer by far. Other important customers included major industries associated with the Hitler war machine. Expanding its German workforce from 17,000 in 1934 to 27,000 in 1938 also made GM one of Germany’s leading employers. Unquestionably, GM’s Opel became an integral facet of Hitler’s Reich.”
(“Nazis Rode to War on GM Wheels” by Edwin Black; San Francisco Chronicle; 1/7/2007; pp. E1-E6.)
2. More about just how profound the relationship between GM and the Third Reich was: “More than just an efficient manufacturer, Opel openly embraced the bizarre philosophy that powered the Nazi military-industrial complex. The German company participated in cultic führer-worship as a part of its daily corporate ethic. After all, until GM purchased Opel in 1929 for $33.3 million, or about one-third of GM’s after-tax profit that year, Opel was an established carmaker with a respected German persona. The Opel family included several prominent Nazi Party members. This identity appealed to rank-and-file Nazis who condemned anything foreign-owned or foreign-made. For all these reasons, during the Hitler years, Sloan and Mooney both made efforts to obscure Opel’s American ownership and control. Of course, GM’s subsidiary vigorously joined the anti-Jewish movement required of leading businesses serving the Reich. Jewish employees and suppliers became verboten. . . .” (Idem.)
3. Next, the program sets forth the fundamentals of a possible takeover of the Russian YUKOS oil company by Deutsche Bank. If such a development does take place, it would cement German influence on the Russian fossil fuel business, thereby reaching a longstanding German eco/political goal. “YUKOS chairman of board Viktor Gerashchenko told Kommersant that Deutsche Bank is in talks about redeeming debts and buying the controlling stock of YUKOS. If Deutsche Bank manages to carry this out, it will have in its hands the fate of the major current corporation conflict in Russia’s economy – that of Gazprom and Rosneft. Two independent sources in the investment banking sphere told Kommersant last week that Deutsche Bank and its Russian subsidiary Deutsche UFG are interested in YUKOS assets. YUKOS chairman of board Viktor Gerashchenko confirmed the information in his interview to Kommersant yesterday. He said that last week he received a letter signed by Ilya Shcherbovich, head of the bank’s subsidiary in Russia Deutsche UFG. The letter said that the bank is interested in purchasing ‘YUKOS’s controlling stock’ and ‘is ready to undertake’ redeeming the company’s debts. . . .”
(“YUKOS Assets to Become German” by Dmitry Butrin, Denis Rebrov; Kommersant: Russia’s Daily Online; 10/16/2006.)
3. Supplementing a long-standing inquiry by Mr. Emory, the program sets forth a recent development in the investigation into the assassination of President Kennedy. A dispute has erupted over the proposed release of documents belonging to the late Montreal attorney Louis Mortimer Bloomfield. Some JFK assassination researchers believe that Bloomfield was involved in the assassination. (For more about the JFK assassination, use the search function.) “Does the key to the assassination of U.S. President John F. Kennedy lie buried in Canada’s national archives? Or is it another secret that has pitted Montreal researcher Maurice Philipps against Library and Archives Canada and the widow of a once prominent Montreal lawyer, Louis Mortimer Bloomfield? One thing is certain. Whatever Bloomfield’s widow is trying to keep under lock and key — out of concern for ‘privacy and the reputation of Louis M. Bloomfield’ — it has left Canada’s national archives wrestling with a dilemma that goes to the heart of the question of who controls access to private documents donated to the federal government. A recent federal court ruling found the institution cannot arbitrarily extend the restriction on access to Bloomfield’s papers well past the original deadline set by Bloomfield himself. Now, the archives is struggling to decide when to lift the veil of secrecy on papers that have been judged of exceptional interest to Canada. . . .”
(“Do Lawyer’s Files Hide JFK Secrets?” by Elizabeth Thompson; Montreal Gazette; 1/27/2007.)
4. Bloomfield’s alleged participation in the Kennedy assassination stems from his association with a company called Permindex. This topic is discussed in The Guns of November, Part IV. “ . . . At the center of the controversy are 31 boxes of documents that Bloomfield donated to the archives a few years before his death in 1984. . . . Philipps, author of the book De Dallas a Montreal, which explores a possible Montreal connection to JFK’s 1963 assassination in Dallas, stumbled on a reference to the Bloomfield connection in the mid-1990s and was intrigued — particularly given allegations advanced by some JFK conspiracy theorists that tied Bloomfield to the shooting, a company called Permindex, the CIA and the agency that preceded it, the Office of Strategic Services. While the conspiracy theory connection between Bloomfield and JFK’s assassination is a complex one and has evolved over time, it appears to stem from the fact he was named as a major shareholder in a shadowy international company called Permindex. Among the other people involved in Permindex was Clay Shaw, whom New Orleans district-attorney Jim Garrison suspected was part of a conspiracy to murder the president. There are also allegations Permindex was a front or shell company for the CIA and was used to funnel money for intelligence operations. Some of the theories allege Bloomfield had been recruited into the OSS and that he had ties to intelligence circles — something Harry Bloomfield vehemently denies. While Philipps does not believe the papers implicate Bloomfield in the shooting — in fact, he believes they may clear Bloomfield’s name — he believes they could contain clues that could help shed light on JFK’s assassination: ‘I think we will find information on people other than him ... but I don’t think that Mr. Bloomfield was directly linked to that in a criminal way.’ . . .” (Idem.)
5. Next, the program delves into the subject of the privatization of national security matters, the broadcast notes CIA alarm at the close relationship between the Blackwater security firm and the CIA. (For more about the Blackwater firm, see FTR#529. For more about the privatization of national security, see FTR#451. For more about Joseph P. Schmitz, now the top man at Blackwater, see FTR#476.) “ . . . A number of senior CIA and Pentagon officials have taken top jobs at Blackwater, including firm vice chairman Cofer Black, who was the Bush Administration’s top counterterrorism official at the time of the 9/11 attacks (and who famously said in 2002, ‘There was before 9/11 and after 9/11. After 9/11, the gloves came off.’) Robert Young Pelton, author of the new book, Licensed to Kill, says that an early Blackwater contract—a secret no-bid $5.4 million deal with the CIA—came in 2002 after Prince placed a call to Buzzy Krongard, who was then the CIA’s executive director. A CIA source with whom I spoke said that Prince is very tight with top agency officials and has a ‘green badge,’ the security pass for contractors who have access to CIA installations. ‘He’s over there [at CIA headquarters] regularly, probably once a month or so,’ this person told me. ‘He meets with senior people, especially in the D.O.’ (The D.O., or Directorate of Operations, runs covert operations; last year, it was absorbed by the newly created National Clandestine Service.) Prince’s visits are probably one reason that the revolving door to Blackwater keeps turning. Last fall, Rob Richer resigned from the post of Associate Deputy Director of Operations; he immediately took a job as Blackwater’s Vice President of Intelligence. Richer is a former head of the CIA’s Near East Division and long served in Amman, where, for a period beginning in 1999, he held the post of station chief. . .”
(“Revolving Door to Blackwater Causes Alarm at CIA” by Ken Silverstein; Harper’s Magazine; 912/2006.)
6. Concluding with competing conspiracy theories about the death of an Iranian scientist, the program highlights the various hypotheses about the death of Ardeshir Hassanpour. The American security firm Stratfor theorized that the Mossad (the Israeli foreign intelligence service) assassinated Hassanpour as part of a campaign to neutralize the Iranian nuclear development program. An Iranian dissident stated that Hassanpour was killed by the Iranian government because of his opposition to the regime of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and added that he was not a nuclear scientist. The Iranian government stated that Hassanpour died an accidental death. “The escalating confrontation between Iran and the West has produced an atomic ‘whodunit,’ with fingers pointing across the Middle East. Last month, Iran reported the death of Ardeshir Hassanpour, 44, one of the country’s leading nuclear scientists. The news fueled a wave of rumors and conspiracy theories in cyberspace. . . .”
(“Iranian Scientist’s Death Stirs Talk of an Atomic ‘Whodunit’” by Marc Perelman; Forward; 2/16/2007.)