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FTR #920 The Trumpenkampfverbande, Part 3: The Underground Reich Emerges Into Plain View

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This broadcast was recorded in one, 60-minute segment.

MeinKampfthinkbignkickassIntroduction: For many yearswhat Mr. Emory terms “The Underground Reich” has been a fundamental point of discussion and analysis in these broadcasts and posts. In the third program analyzing the Donald Trump campaign, we examine the “Trumpenkampfverbande,” its political antecedents and adherents.

Exemplifying, and networking with, generations of fascists and fascist organizations, the Trumpenkampfverbande embodies the emergence of the Underground Reich into plain view.

In FTR #’s 918 and 919, we examined Trump’s pronouncements about Russia, NATO and Ukraine in the context of traditional German “Ostpolitik.” Far from being the “dupe/agent/stooge” of “Putin/Russia/the Kremlin” that our (to a large extent willfully) ignorant media and political establishments label Trump, he appears to be a signal element, heralding a “bidding war” between East and West that will yield tremendous benefits for a Germany that has realized its long-standing goal of a unified Europe and is now building a new, EU-wide military structure that threatens to replace NATO.

Furthermore, securing a “winning bid” from Russia may yield a German-dominated trade organization “stretching from Lisbon to Vladivostok.”

In this regard, we feel that Trump is functioning in a manner analogous to the “Open Letter to Stalin” published in the Buerger Zeitung.

A signature element of Trump’s campaign is his resuscitation of the “America First” slogan and concept, a manifestation both of his thinly-veiled appeal to Nazi and white supremacist elements and his willingness to cede dominance over world affairs to a German-dominated “third power bloc.”

Just as America First–in its 1930s manifestation–favored keeping America from becoming involved in Europe, thereby giving Germany an unchallenged position in its hegemonic designs, so, too, Trump’s pronouncements about NATO herald isolationist position for the U.S. that will benefit the EU/Germany.

In addition, the America First concept mobilizes powerful feelings among those feeling overwhelmed and left behind by political and economic developments globally and in the United States.

The “original” America First was financed by Nazi Germany.

On the subject of America First:

  • “. . . . The businessman [Trump] has also adopted the rallying cry ‘America First’, which became famous as a slogan of the famous aviator Charles Lindbergh and isolationists in the 1930s and early 1940s. Lindbergh, who was welcomed in Nazi Germany several times before the second world war, wrote about ‘racial strength’ and said civilization depended ‘on a western wall of race and arms which can hold back either a Genghis Khan or the infiltration of inferior blood’. . . .”
  • “. . . . It is no accident that ‘America First’s’ actual historical progenitor is a 30s-era Nativist, anti-Semitic quasi-isolationism which was effectively allied with Nazi Germany. The real meaning of ‘America First’ has always been that America is being taken advantage of, being exploited and exposed. . . .”
  • ” . . . . the [pro-Nazi German American] Bund had so antagonized most Americans by its swastika-heiling phase that orders came from Berlin to cut out public singing of the Horst Wessel Lied, shelve the Sam Browne belts and marching boots and ‘go American.’ The party line changed, as a bucket of red-white-and-blue paint was applied to make overnight ‘patriots’ of the Nazis. The Deutscher Weckruf became The Free American. And no longer professing to convert the United States to National-Socialism, the Bund became nationalist and isolationist, showed great concern for the welfare of the Republic and adopted the slogan: America First. . . .”
  • “. . . Mussolini’s fascist system was first described as ‘nationalist.’ The French fascist organization Croix de Feu, which developed into a Vichy instrument was called ‘nationalist.’ The Nazi party is the National-Socialist Party. The Japanese War Party is a ‘nationalist’ party. All these countries had their ‘Germany First,’ ‘France First’ and ‘Spain First’ parties. Recall that the motto of Sir Oswald Mosley’s Blackshirts was ‘Britain First’ and Stahrenberg’s slogan of the American National-Socialist Party was ‘America First, Last and Always.’ ‘America First’ can be no different in its connotation and ultimate outcome despite the sincere intents of some of those who mouth it. ‘America First’ is a cry unwittingly used by Liberty’s hangmen. . . .”
  • “. . . . Only second secretary in the embassy, von Gienanth maintained a frightening grip over his fellow diplomats. He was an undercover SS man, the ears and eyes of the ‘Reichsministry of Proper Enlightenment and Propaganda,’ charged with keeping watch over its secret American operations. He was, in short, the Gestapo chief in America. . . . He devoted himself to changing Goebbels’ gold into dollars, and those dollars into laundered ‘donations’ to the America First Committee, where unwitting isolationists–Abram [Vereide] allies such as Senator Arthur Vandenberg and America First President Robert M. Hanes among them–stumped for recognition of the ‘fact’ on Hitler’s inevitability. . . .”

After reviewing some of Trump’s associations with fascists and Nazis, past and present, the program turns to the subject of Joseph E. Schmitz, one of Trump’s advisers on foreign and national security policy.

“Obsessed with all things German . . . . and Von Steuben,” Schmitz’s Germanophilia and “Von Steubenophilia” (to coin a term) appears to betoken a Nazi-style political orientation.

” . . . . Daniel Meyer, a senior official within the intelligence community, described Schmitz’s remarks in his complaint file. ‘His summary of his tenure’s achievement reported as ‘…I fired the Jews,’ ‘ wrote Meyer, a former official in the Pentagon inspector general’s office whose grievance was obtained by McClatchy. . . . In his complaint, Meyer said [John] Crane also said Schmitz played down the extent of the Holocaust. . . . In his final days, he allegedly lectured Mr. Crane on the details of concentration camps and how the ovens were too small to kill 6 million Jews,” wrote Meyer, whose complaint is before the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). . . .”

Signaling the profound Trump campaign affiliation with Nazis and white supremacists, the program highlights the appointment of Breitbart chief Steve Bannon to run Trump’s campaign. Bannon has “mainstreamed” Nazis and “white nationalists.”

Waffen SS-clad World War II reenactors, in original photo used by Trump

Waffen SS-clad World War II reenactors, in original photo used by Trump

Further developing Trump’s links with what media have termed “the alt right.” we note the Trump’s tweeting of a campaign ad featuring Waffen-SS-clad World War II re-enactors. Tweeting fascist images and concepts is something Trump does with great frequency.

After tweeting an anti-Semitic portrayal of Hillary Clinton beside a Star of David, Trump attempted to deflect criticism by claiming it was a “sheriff’s star.” The tweet originated on an “alt right” messaging board, and its substance was endorsed by David Duke.

Although not discussed in the audio recording, we note in this description that Trump kept a collection of Hitler’s speeches by his bed.

In politics, it is an axiom that one should “follow the money.” Supplementing discussion from FTR #919, in which we analyzed a New York Times article highlighting Donald Trump’s altogether opaque real estate developments and evidence that those projects had significant links to elements of the Bormann capital network, we set forth the primary role of Deutsche Bank in financing Trump’s real estate projects. ” . . . While many big banks have shunned him, Deutsche Bank AG has been a steadfast financial backer of the Republican presidential candidate’s business interests. Since 1998, the bank has led or participated in loans of at least $2.5 billion to companies affiliated with Mr. Trump, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of public records and people familiar with the matter. That doesn’t include at least another $1 billion in loan commitments that Deutsche Bank made to Trump-affiliated entities. The long-standing connection makes Frankfurt-based Deutsche Bank, which has a large U.S. operation and has been grappling with reputational problems and an almost 50% stock-price decline, the financial institution with probably the strongest ties to the controversial New York businessman. . . .”

The fact that Deutsche Bank is the primary financial backer of “Trump Incorporated” is of primary importance. The bank is central to the Bormann capital network.

“. . . . When Bormann gave the order for his representatives to resume purchases of American corporate stocks, it was usually done through the neutral countries of Switzerland and Argentina. From foreign exchange funds on deposit in Swiss banks and in Deutsche Sudamerikanishe Bank, the Buenos Aires branch of Deutsche Bank, large demand deposits were placed in the principal money-center banks of New York City; National City (now Citibank), Chase (now Chase Manhattan N.A.), Manufacturers and Hanover (now manufacturers Hanover Trust), Morgan Guaranty, and Irving Trust. Such deposits are interest-free and the banks can invest this money as they wish, thus turning tidy profits for themselves. In return, they provide reasonable services such as the purchase of stocks and transfer or payment of money on demand by customers of Deutsche bank such as representatives of the Bormann business organizations and and Martin Bormann himself, who has demand accounts in three New York City banks. They continue to do so. The German investment in American corporations from these sources exceeded $5 billion and made the Bormann economic structure a web of power and influence. The two German-owned banks of Spain, Banco Aleman Transatlantico (now named Banco Comercial Transatlantico), and Banco Germanico de la America del Sur, S.A., a subsidiary of Deutsche Bank served to channel German money from Spain to South America, where further investments were made. . . .”

Trump’s deep indebtedness to Deutsche Bank has been supplemented by financial support from George Soros. As we have noted in the past, Soros got his start in business “Aryanizing” Jewish property in Hungary during World War II. In the past, we have noted that Soros may well be a “Bormann Jew.”

Program Highlights Include:

IlDuceIlDouche1a. A signature element of Trump’s campaign is his “America First” rallying slogan, which harkens back directly to the “America First” of the pre-World War II period.

“Donald Trump and Allies Forced to Answer Questions about Anti-Semitism” by Alan Yuhas; The Guardian; 7/25/2016.

. . . . The businessman has also adopted the rallying cry “America First”, which became famous as a slogan of the famous aviator Charles Lindbergh and isolationists in the 1930s and early 1940s. Lindbergh, who was welcomed in Nazi Germany several times before the second world war, wrote about “racial strength” and said civilization depended “on a western wall of race and arms which can hold back either a Genghis Khan or the infiltration of inferior blood”. . . .

1b. More about America First, noting the ideological and rhetorical resonance between the pro-Nazi group of the pre-Word War II period and the Trumpenkampfverbande.

“Putting America First” by Josh Marshall; Talking Points Memo; 4/30/2016.

 . . . . It is no accident that “America First’s” actual historical progenitor is a 30s-era Nativist, anti-Semitic quasi-isolationism which was effectively allied with Nazi Germany. The real meaning of ‘America First’ has always been that America is being taken advantage of, being exploited and exposed. . . .

1c. In his landmark text Under Cover, John Roy Carlson highlighted the rhetorical and ideological resonance between America First and other fascist movements of the time.

Under Cover–My Four Years in the Nazi Underworld in America by John Roy Carlson; E.P. Dutton [HC]; 1943; pp. 113-114, 498-499 .

. . . . In the meanwhile, the Bund had so antagonized most Americans by its swastika-heiling phase that orders came from Berlin to cut out public singing of the Horst Wessel Lied, shelve the Sam Browne belts and marching boots and ‘go American.’ The party line changed, as a bucket of red-white-and-blue paint was applied to make overnight ‘patriots’ of the Nazis. The Deutscher Weckruf became The Free American. And no longer professing to convert the United States to National-Socialism, the Bund became nationalist and isolationist, showed great concern for the welfare of the Republic and adopted the slogan: America First. . . .

. . . Mussolini’s fascist system was first described as ‘nationalist.’ The French fascist organization Croix de Feu, which developed into a Vichy instrument was called ‘nationalist.’ The Nazi party is the National-Socialist Party. The Japanese War Party is a ‘nationalist’ party. All these countries had their ‘Germany First,’ ‘France First’ and ‘Spain First’ parties. Recall that the motto of Sir Oswald Mosley’s Blackshirts was ‘Britain First’ and Stahrenberg’s slogan of the American National-Socialist Party was ‘America First, Last and Always.’ ‘America First’ can be no different in its connotation and ultimate outcome despite the sincere intents of some of those who mouth it. ‘America First’ is a cry unwittingly used by Liberty’s hangmen.” . . .

1d. Baron Ulrich von Gienanth, the Gestapo chief of the German embassy in Washington and a member of the SS, laundered funds to underwrite the activities of America First.

The Family by Jeff Sharlet; Harper Perennial (SC); Copyright 2008 by Jeff Sharlet; ISBN 978-0-06-056005-8; pp. 147-148

. . . . Only second secretary in the embassy, von Gienanth maintained a frightening grip over his fellow diplomats. He was an undercover SS man, the ears and eyes of the “Reichsministry of Proper Enlightenment and Propaganda,” charged with keeping watch over its secret American operations. He was, in short, the Gestapo chief in America. While Zapp worried about his legal prospects in the Indian Summer of 1940, von Gienanth was likely waiting for news of a major operation in New Jersey: the detonation of the Hercules gunpowder plant, an explosion that on September 12 killed forty-seven and sent shockwaves so strong that they snapped wind into the sails of boaters in far-off Long Island Sound. . . .

. . . . Von Gienanth’s initiatives were whimsical by comparison. Once for instance, he paid a pilot to dump pro-Nazi antiwar fliers on the White House lawn. He devoted himself to changing Goebbels’ gold into dollars, and those dollars into laundered “donations” to the America First Committee, where unwitting isolationists–Abram allies such as Senator Arthur Vandenberg and America First President Robert M. Hanes among them–stumped for recognition of the “fact” on Hitler’s inevitability. . . .

1e. In a transition element from the first two shows about Donald Trump, we note that one of his top advisers on foreign affairs–Joseph E. Schmitz–has been accused of anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial. This is the same Schmitz who was “obsessed” with “all things German” and “all things Von Steuben.”

“Trump Adviser Accused of Making Anti-Semitic Remarks” by Marisa Taylor and William Douglas; McClatchy News Bureau; 8/18/2016.

Allegations of anti-Semitism have surfaced against one of Donald Trump’s foreign policy advisers, raising further questions about the guidance the Republican presidential nominee is receiving.

Joseph Schmitz, named as one of five advisers by the Trump campaign in March, is accused of bragging when he was Defense Department inspector general a decade ago that he pushed out Jewish employees.The revelations feed two themes that his opponent Hillary Clinton has used to erode Trump’s credibility: That he is a foreign policy neophyte, and that his campaign, at times, has offended Jews and other minorities.

Schmitz, who is a lawyer in private practice in Washington, says the allegations against him are lies. All three people who have cited the remarks, including one who testified under oath about them, have pending employment grievances with the federal government.

Daniel Meyer, a senior official within the intelligence community, described Schmitz’s remarks in his complaint file.

“His summary of his tenure’s achievement reported as ‘…I fired the Jews,’ ” wrote Meyer, a former official in the Pentagon inspector general’s office whose grievance was obtained by McClatchy.

Meyer, who declined to comment about the matter, cited in his complaint another former top Pentagon official, John Crane, as the source and witness to the remarks. Crane worked with Schmitz, who served as inspector general between April 2002 and September 2005.

In his complaint, Meyer said Crane also said Schmitz played down the extent of the Holocaust.

“In his final days, he allegedly lectured Mr. Crane on the details of concentration camps and how the ovens were too small to kill 6 million Jews,” wrote Meyer, whose complaint is before the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). . . .

. . . . Though Schmitz left the government in 2005, he has inserted himself in public affairs often through writing editorials and giving speeches.

Schmitz spoke to law students in March 2015 at Southern Methodist University in Dallas in a forum about communism and its impact on society.

Renwei Chung, a student who took notes of Schmitz’s speech, said it appeared to him that Schmitz was calling Obama a communist. He described how Schmitz held up the book: “The Communist: Frank Marshall Davis – The Untold Story of Barack Obama’s Mentor” and said to the forum, “The Chinese worship Mao. They have pictures of Mao everywhere. Do you know who the second most popular person in China is? Obama. … Why is that?”

Jeffrey Kahn, a professor who also spoke at the forum, said the encounter with Schmitz left him “chilled.”

Kahn wrote in an opinion piece published in July in the Dallas Morning News that “I had witnessed a ghost from McCarthy’s staff,” a reference to former Sen. Joseph McCarthy, who was obsessed with exposing communists in the 1950s.

“What foreign policy advice will Schmitz whisper into Trump’s ear?” Kahn wrote. “I shudder to think what he might do in such a position of power.”

1f. In our discussions with Peter Levenda, we noted that an element common to fascism of various kinds is a preoccupation with, and desire to return to, a mythical, idealized past.

The Hitler Legacy by Peter Levenda; IBIS Press [HC]; Copyright 2014 by Peter Levenda; ISBN 978-0-89254-210-9; pp. 85-89.

. . . . Both the American Nazi and the Klan movements wanted America to go back to the way it was before the Great Depression, before the First World War, to a time that never really existed the way they thought it did: a time before the advent of Communist states like the Soviet Union; a time before blacks and Jews could be considered equal citizens of the nation. Like many of today’s extreme right protestors, the Nazis and Klansmen of the 1920s and 1930s wanted to “take their country back,” in this case–and possibly in the present case also–“back” meant “back in time.” . . . .

. . . . This focus on purity could be seen as a desire to return to a more primitive time–in illo tempore–when the world was pristine. That this time probably never existed did not occur (or was not acceptable) to those promoting this “return to nature” and “return to our roots” philosophy. Legends of ancient Greece and Rome were conflated with legends concerning Atlantis and Thule: the latter the presumed ancient homeland of the Aryans. With the coming of Western civilization–according to this theory–much of humanity’s basic goodness and inherent physical and psychic powers were lost, a kind of Samson and Delilah moment when the virile and pure Samson is shorn of his hair and thus loses his potency and strength to the Levantine, Semitic seductress. . . . It is also an implicit acknowledgment of failure. This yearning for a return to some other state in the distant past indicates an incapability of dealing with present-day issues in any other way. It represents a desire to wipe the slate clean and start over, which may be attractive as a fantasy but not practicable in life. . . .

2. GOP front-runner Donald Trump has garnered much attention for his pronouncements in the racist/xenophobic vein. We note his close association with Norman Vincent Peale and former Joe McCarthy aide Roy Cohn. In AFA #2, we noted that prominent German-Americans such as Hitler sympathizer Walter Harnischfager backed McCarthy. Trump’s political heritage stretches back to the Nazi fifth column in this country.

“The USFL’s Trump Card” by Robert Boyle; Sports Illustrated; 2/13/2015.

. . . . As might be expected, the Trumps travel in rarefied circles. Dr. Norman Vincent Peale is their pastor, Roy Cohn their attorney. “Donald Trump is an extraordinary young man,” says Peale. “He has the elements of genius.” Cohn says Trump is “one of the most enterprising, ingenious businessmen on the American scene…a miracle man who can’t seem to make a mistake even if he tries.” . . . .

3. Trump is close to Helene Von Damm, the Otto von Bolschwing protege who selected the personnel for Ronald Reagan’s cabinet. Von Damm became Reagan’s Ambassador to Austria. It would not be unreasonable to ask if Trump’s business dealings are involved with the Bormann capital network.

“Helene Von Damm’s Viennese Waltz” by William Drodziak; The Washington Post; 3/5/1985.

. . . . She would like to divide her time between Vienna and New York, where her campaign days reaped several close friendships in big business circles, notably with construction magnate Donald Trump. . . .

4. Among the Christian prelates operating on behalf of the Nazi cause was The Reverend Norman Vincent Peale. Best known as the exponent of “the power of positive thinking,” Peale long graced the pages of publications like Reader’s Digest and his name became synonymous with wholesome, mainstream Americana in the postwar years. Prior to and during the war, however, Peale fronted for Edward A. Rumely, a spy and agitator for Germany during both World Wars. Like so many others, Rumely, too, benefited from his association with Hitler benefactor Henry Ford. Note that another of Rumely’s fellow travelers in the Fifth Column movement was Frank Gannett, founder of the newspaper chain that bears his name.

Under Cover–My Four Years in the Nazi Underworld in America by John Roy Carlson; E.P. Dutton [HC]; 1943; pp. 474-475.

. . . . Rumely is boss of the Committee for Constitutional Government and second in command to Frank E. Gannett, publisher of a string of newspapers and founder of the committee in 1937. As soon as the Senatorial investigation was over, Rumely literally went underground and erased his name from the Committee stationery. But he continued to run it by appointing a docile Protestant clergyman as ‘acting chairman and secretary’ who visited the office only occasionally. He was the Reverend Norman Vincent Peale, once a joint speaker with [American fascist] Mrs. Elizabeth Dilling and the Reverend Edward Lodge Curran [key aide to Father Coughlin] at a ‘pro-American mass meeting sponsored by more than 50 patriotic organizations’ at the Hotel Commodore in New York. . . . Rumely’s friendship with Henry Ford dated prior to the summer of 1918 when Ford rushed to Washington in an unsuccessful attempt to save Rumely from being indicted. . . .

5. Reviewing part of the political history of McCarthyism, we detail “The Pond”–an intelligence network run by John “Frenchy” Grombach. A portion of the historical depth to the development of American fascism is contained in this analysis. The New York Times–predictably–does not discuss dynamics like this.

SS general Karl Wolff began feeding information to “Frenchy” Grombach, a former military intelligence agent who formed a network of operatives who fed information to the CIA, among others. As indicated here, one of Grombach’s major sources in his efforts was Wolff.

Blowback by Christopher Simpson; Collier [Macmillan] {SC}; Copyright 1988 by Christopher Simpson; ISBN 0-02-044995-X; p. 236.

. . . One of Grombach’s most important assets, according to U.S. naval intelligence records obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, was SS General Karl Wolff, a major war criminal who had gone into the arms trade in Europe after the war. . . . Grombach worked simultaneously under contract to the Department of State and the CIA. The ex-military intelligence man succeeded in creating ‘one of the most unusual organizations in the history of the federal government,’ according to CIA Inspector General Lyman Kirkpatrick. ‘It was developed completely outside of the normal governmental structure, [but it] used all of the normal cover and communications facilities normally operated by intelligence organizations, and yet never was under any control from Washington.’ By the early 1950s the U.S. government was bankrolling Grombach’s underground activities at more than $1 million annually, Kirkpatrick has said. . . .

6. Among the primary recipients of Grombach’s and Wolff’s information was Senator Joseph McCarthy, who utilized dirt given him by the network to smear his opponents.

Blowback by Christopher Simpson; Collier [Macmillan] {SC}; Copyright 1988 by Christopher Simpson; ISBN 0-02-044995-X; p. 236.

. . . Grombach banked on his close connections with Senators Joseph McCarthy, William Jenner, and other members of the extreme Republican right to propel him to national power. . . .Grombach’s outfit effectively became the foreign espionage agency for the far right, often serving as the overseas complement to McCarthy’s generally warm relations with J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI at home . . . . U.S. government contracts bankrolling a network of former Nazis and collaborators gave him much of the ammunition he needed to do the job. Grombach used his networks primarily to gather dirt. This was the American agent’s specialty, his true passion: political dirt, sexual dirt, any kind of compromising information at all. ‘He got into a lot of garbage pails,’ as Kirkpatrick puts it, ‘and issued ‘dirty linen’ ‘reports on Americans. ‘Grombach collected scandal, cataloged it, and used it carefully, just as he had done during the earlier McCormack investigation. He leaked smears to his political allies in Congress and the press when it suited his purposes to do so. Grombach and congressional ‘internal security’ investigators bartered these dossiers with one another almost as though they were boys trading baseball cards. . . .

7. Trump has a new campaign chief executive: Breitbart chief Steve Bannon, patron media saint of the Alt-Right!

“Alt Right Rejoices at Donald Trump’s Steve Bannon Hire” by Bestsy Woodruff and Gideon Resnick; The Daily Beast; 8/17/2016.

As Breitbart’s chief, Steve Bannon did a lot to normalize the racist, anti-Semitic world of the alt right. Now they rejoice as he joins the campaign of their king.

Donald Trump’s campaign is under new management—and his white nationalist fanboys love it.

The campaign’s new chief executive, Stephen Bannon, joins from Breitbart News—where he helped mainstream the ideas of white nationalists and resuscitate the reputations of anti-immigrant fear-mongers.

White nationalists today invest a lot of energy worrying about growing Hispanic and Muslim populations in the U.S. Turns out, Breitbart News spends a lot of time worrying about those things, too. And in Bannon, they see a media-friendly, ethno-nationalist fellow traveler.

“Latterly, Breitbart emerged as a nationalist site and done great stuff on immigration in particular,” VDARE.com editor Peter Brimelow told The Daily Beast.

VDare is a white supremacist site. It’s named after Virginia Dare, the first white child born to British colonists in North America. Brimelow said he and Bannon met briefly last month and exchanged pleasantries about each other’s work.

“It’s irritating because VDARE.com is not used to competition,” Brimelow added. “I presume that is due to Bannon, so his appointment is great news.”

Brimelow isn’t the only prominent white nationalist to praise the Bannon hire. Richard Spencer, who heads the white supremacist think tank National Policy Institute, said he was also pleased. Under Bannon’s leadership, Breitbart has given favorable coverage to the white supremacist Alt Right movement. And Spencer loves it.

“Breitbart has elective affinities with the Alt Right, and the Alt Right has clearly influenced Breitbart,” he said. “In this way, Breitbart has acted as a ‘gateway’ to Alt Right ideas and writers. I don’t think it has done this deliberately; again, it’s a matter of elective affinities.”

Spencer said Breitbart and Bannon have helped Alt Right ideas gain legitimacy—and, more importantly, exponentially expand their audiences. He cited the work of Milo Yiannopoulos as evidence of this.

“As is evident with Milo’s piece on the Alt Right, Breitbart has people on board who take us seriously, even if they are not Alt Right themselves.”

Yiannopoulos wrote a piece on March 29, 2016, about the Alt Right, praising its members as “dangerously bright,” and cheering the VDARE and American Renaissance sites as an “eclectic mix of renegades.” American Renaissance is helmed by Jared Taylor, who advocates for voluntary racial segregation and says African Americans are genetically predisposed to be criminals.

Yiannopoulos defended Brimelow and Taylor by saying they “don’t want to commit any pogroms,” which is… not a very comforting sentiment.

Reached for comment, Yiannopoulos referred The Daily Beast to Breitbart editor-in-chief Alexander Marlow. He has not returned a request for comment.

The Clinton campaign immediately pounced on the announcement in a conference call on Wednesday afternoon, noting Bannon’s Alt Right ties. “After several failed attempts to pivot into a more serious and presidential mode, Donald Trump has decided to double down on his most small, nasty and divisive instincts by turning his campaign over to someone who’s best known for running a so-called news site that peddles divisive, at times racist, anti-Muslim, anti-Semitic conspiracy theories,” Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook told reporters.

The Clinton campaign did not respond to a follow-up email asking if they will continue to provide press credentials to Breitbart reporters.

Bannon didn’t just make Breitbart a safe space for white supremacists; he’s also welcomed a scholar blacklisted from the mainstream conservative movement for arguing there’s a connection between race and IQ. Breitbart frequently highlights the work of Jason Richwine, resigned from the conservative Heritage Foundation when news broke that his Harvard dissertation argued in part that Hispanics have lower IQs than non-Hispanic whites.

Bannon loves Richwine. On Jan. 6 of this year, when Richwine was a guest on the radio show, Bannon called him “one of the smartest brains out there in demographics, demography, this whole issue of immigration, what it means to this country.”

One former Breitbart worker puts it a little differently. Kurt Bardella, who had the site as a client until quitting this year, said Bannon regularly made racist comments during internal meetings.

“I woke up and the world came to an end,” he told The Daily Beast. “They have put in place someone who is a dictator-bully—a figure whose form of management is verbal abuse and intimidation.

“He made more off-color comments about minorities and homosexuals than I can recount,” he added.

Bardella, who lives in Virginia and was formerly a Republican Hill staffer, said this November, for the first time in his life, he will vote for a Democrat: Hillary Clinton. . . .

8. Earlier this year, a controversy emerged when old newspaper articles about arrests at a 1927 Klan rally in Queens (New York City) mentioned a “Fred Trump” as among the “berobed marchers” arrested at the event.

Although the identification of Trump’s father as one of the Klan participants has not been definitively established, The Donald lied when confronted with the address of the arrested Fred Trump.

” . . . . asked if his father had lived at 175-24 Devonshire Road—the address listed for the Fred Trump arrested at the 1927 Klan rally—Donald dismissed the claim as “totally false.”

“We lived on Wareham,” he told Horowitz. “The Devonshire—I know there is a road ‘Devonshire,’ but I don’t think my father ever lived on Devonshire.” Trump went on to deny everything else in the Times’ account of the 1927 rally: “It shouldn’t be written because it never happened, number one. And number two, there was nobody charged.”

Biographical records confirm that the Trump family did live on Wareham Place in Queens in the 1940s, when Donald was a kid. But according to at least one archived newspaper clip, Fred Trump also lived at 175-24 Devonshire Road: A wedding announcement in the January 22, 1936 issue of the Long Island Daily Press, places Fred Trump at that address, and refers to his wife as “Mary MacLeod,” which is Donald Trump’s mother’s maiden name. . . .”

It seems altogether probable that The Donald’s father was the “Fred Trump” arrested at the rally for “failing to disperse,” but Fred Trump’s specific activities at the Klan Rally have not been established.

In the context of assessing the deep politics surrounding Trump, the possibility of Klan participation by his father is interesting and possibly relevant. In Under Cover (available for download for free on this website), the extensive networking between dominant elements of the KKK and various Fifth Column organizations in this country is covered at length.

One of those Fifth Column organizations was America First–again, Trump has appropriated that name.

Also of interest in the context of the “Fred Trump” arrested at the Klan Rally is the fact that David Duke has been an enthusiastic supporter of Trump, who was altogether hesitant about disavowing Duke’s support.

All the Evidence We Could Find About Fred Trump’s Alleged Involvement with the KKK” by Mike Pearl; Vice News; 3/9/2016.

Late last month, in an interview with Republican frontrunner Donald Trump, CNN host Jake Tapper asked the candidate whether he would disavow an endorsement from longtime Ku Klux Klan leader and white nationalist celebrity David Duke. Trump declined. “I don’t know anything about David Duke,” he said. Moments later, he added, “I know nothing about white supremacists.”

Trump has since walked back his comments, blaming his hesitance to condemn the Klan on a “bad earpiece.” The matter has now been filed away into the ever-growing archives of volatile statements Trump has made about race and ethnicity during the current election cycle—a list that includes kicking off his presidential campaign by calling Mexicans rapists, calling for the “‘total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States,” and commenting that perhaps a Black Lives Matter protester at one of his rallies “should have been roughed up.”

But the particulars of the David Duke incident call to mind yet another news story, one that suggests that Trump’s father, the late New York real estate titan Fred Trump, once wore the robe and hood of a Klansman.

Versions of this story emerged last September when Boing Boing dug up an old New York Times article from May of 1927 that listed a Fred Trump among those arrested at a Klan rally in Jamaica, Queens, when “1,000 Klansmen and 100 policemen staged a free-for-all,” in the streets. Donald Trump’s father would have been 21 in 1927 and had spent most of his life in Queens.

As Boing Boing pointed out, the Times account simply names Fred Trump as one of the seven individuals arrested at the rally, and it states that he was released without charges, leaving room for the possibility that he “may have been an innocent bystander, falsely named, or otherwise the victim of mistaken identity during or following a chaotic event.”

A few weeks after Boing Boing unearthed that 88-year-old scoop, the New York Times asked Donald Trump about the possibility that his father had been arrested at a Klan event. The younger Trump denied it all, telling interviewer Jason Horowitz that “it never happened” four times. When Horowitz asked if his father had lived at 175-24 Devonshire Road—the address listed for the Fred Trump arrested at the 1927 Klan rally—Donald dismissed the claim as “totally false.”

“We lived on Wareham,” he told Horowitz. “The Devonshire—I know there is a road ‘Devonshire,’ but I don’t think my father ever lived on Devonshire.” Trump went on to deny everything else in the Times’ account of the 1927 rally: “It shouldn’t be written because it never happened, number one. And number two, there was nobody charged.”

Biographical records confirm that the Trump family did live on Wareham Place in Queens in the 1940s, when Donald was a kid. But according to at least one archived newspaper clip, Fred Trump also lived at 175-24 Devonshire Road: A wedding announcement in the January 22, 1936 issue of the Long Island Daily Press, places Fred Trump at that address, and refers to his wife as “Mary MacLeod,” which is Donald Trump’s mother’s maiden name.

Moreover, three additional newspaper clips unearthed by VICE contain separate accounts of Fred Trump’s arrest at the May 1927 KKK rally in Queens, each of which seems to confirm the Times account of the events that day. While the clips don’t confirm whether Fred Trump was actually a member of the Klan, they do suggest that the rally—and the subsequent arrests—did happen, and did involve Donald Trump’s father, contrary to the candidate’s denials. A fifth article mentions the seven arrestees without giving names, and claims that all of the individuals arrested—presumably including Trump—were wearing Klan attire.

The June 1, 1927, account of the May 31 Klan rally printed in a defunct Brooklyn paper called the Daily Star specifies that a Fred Trump “was dismissed on a charge of refusing to disperse.” That article lists seven total arrests, and states that four of those arrested were expected to go to court, and two were paroled. Fred Trump was the only one not held on charges.

The Klan’s reaction to the alleged police brutality at the rally was the subject of another article, published in the Queens County Evening News on June 2, 1927, and titled “Klan Placards Assail Police, As War Vets Seek Parade Control.” The piece is mainly about the Klan distributing leaflets about being “assaulted” by the “Roman Catholic police of New York City” at that same rally. The article mentions Fred Trump as having been “discharged” and gives the Devonshire Road address, along with the names and addresses of the other six men who faced charges.

Yet another account in another defunct local newspaper, the Richmond Hill Record, published on June 3, 1927, lists Fred Trump as one of the “Klan Arrests,” and also lists the Devonshire Road address.

Another article about the rally, published by the Long Island Daily Press on June 2, 1927, mentions that there were seven arrestees without listing names, and claims that all of the individuals arrested were wearing Klan attire. The story, titled “Meeting on Parade Is Called Off,” focuses on the police actions at the rally, noting criticism of the cops for brutally lashing out at the Klan supporters, who had assembled during a Memorial Day parade.

While the Long Island Daily Press doesn’t mention Fred Trump specifically, the number of arrestees cited in the report is consistent with the other accounts of the rally. Significantly, the article refers to all of the arrestees as “berobed marchers.” If Fred Trump, or another one of the attendees, wasn’t dressed in a robe at the time, that may have been a reporting error worth correcting.

According to Rory McVeigh, chairman of the sociology department at the University of Notre Dame, the version of the Klan that would have been active in Queens during the 1920s may not have necessarily participated in stereotypical KKK activities like fiery crosses and lynch mobs.

“The Klan that became very popular in the early 1920s did advocate white supremacy like the original Klan,” McVeigh told VICE in an email. “But in that respect, [its views were] not too much different from a lot of other white Americans of that time period.” In New York, McVeigh added, “the organization’s opposition to immigration and Catholics probably held the biggest appeal for most of the people who joined.”

None of the articles prove that Fred Trump was a member of the Klan, and it’s possible that he was, as Boing Boing suggested, just a bystander at the rally. But while Donald Trump is absolutely right to say that his father was not charged in the 1927 incident, the candidate’s other claims—that Fred Trump never lived at 175-24 Devonshire Road, and more importantly, that his involvement in a Klan rally “never happened”—appear to be untrue.

The Trump campaign did not respond to multiple requests for comment. . . .

9a. As his campaign was gaining momentum in July of 2015, Donald Trump tweeted a campaign ad that featured a picture of uniformed Waffen SS troopers in the lower right-hand corner. A photograph of Waffen SS-clad World War II reenactors, the picture was blamed on “an intern.” This has become a familiar sort of dodge by Trump when caught tweeting openly racist, anti-Semitic and/or pro-Nazi material–“Who, Me?”

In FTR #882, we noted some of Trump’s “interesting” associations, from SS officer Otto Von Bolschwing protege and Reagan staffer Helene Von Damm, to Joe McCarthy aide Roy Cohn, to former Axis spy Norman Vincent Peale. Those allegiances are recapped above in the description for this program.

We wonder if Trump is linked to, or part of, the Bormann capital network?

In FTR #894, we underscored the long and profound association of the GOP with Nazis and SS war criminals via the Gehlen organization, the overlapping Crusade For Freedom, and the former World Anti-Communist League.

We wonder if the use of Waffen SS-clad troopers is a political “dog whistle” to Underground Reich/Nazi/white supremacist adherents?

Interestingly, and perhaps significantly, the brother of the photographer who snapped the original picture had also had a picture of SS-clad World War II reenactors used by Tim Spear, a GOP state legislator in North Carolina, in his 2010 campaign.

Worth considering in this context is the fact that it is VERY simple to come up with pictures of American soldiers in uniform. Any campaign seeking to cloak a candidate in “patriotic garb” would find it VERY easy to do that without resorting to the same pair of brothers’ photographs of Waffen-SS-clad WWII reenactors.

“I have photos of American soldiers as well,” Cairns said. “But for some reason, [American GOP] politicians seem to be downloading Nazis.” . . .

Also: in right-wing and some military periodicals, the WWII Nazi memorabilia, gear and reenactment milieu has been described as among the possible entry portals available to someone who wants to move from playing with toys to actual Nazi activism.

Are we seeing that here?

“Donald Trump Just Tweeted a Campaign Ad Featuring What Look Like Nazi Soldiers” by Ben Dreyfuss; Mother Jones; 7/14/2015.

UPDATE: We spoke to the dude who took this Nazi photo and he told us something that makes this whole story even more hilarious.Read here.

Not long ago, Donald Trump sent out the following tweet:

The tweet is now deleted. Why did Trump delete it? Maybe it has something to with those the soldiers marching next to The Donald’s shoulder:

#MEGAFAIL ===> Yes, those aren’t just WW2 Germans, they’re Waffen-SS in the Trump campaign pic https://t.co/BSFNuNrK6R

— John Schindler (@20committee) July 14, 2015

Yes, Trump (or his graphic design minions) apparently included a photo of soldiers from the Waffen-SS, the notorious military wing of the Nazi SS, in the image. John Schindler, who seems to know his World War II German uniforms, has been detailing the Trump campaign’s photo-research fail:

100% certain Waffen-SS ID on the Trump pic….if media want an explainer how I am certain, ask me https://t.co/b3pwWmdwHY

— John Schindler (@20committee) July 14, 2015

.@charles_gaba@MichaelNiemerg@realDonaldTrump they’re wearing Waffen-SS cuff titles, FFS…dude on left has late-war SS “dot” camo uniform

— John Schindler (@20committee) July 14, 2015

Notice the late-war Waffen-SS “dot” camo tunic, with SS eagle on left arm as in the Trump pic https://t.co/b3pwWmdwHYpic.twitter.com/ulScwicbZU

— John Schindler (@20committee) July 14, 2015

See also Waffen-SS tunic with unit cuff title & SS eagle on left arm, as in Trump pic https://t.co/b3pwWmdwHYpic.twitter.com/IdQlwcIebJ

— John Schindler (@20committee) July 14, 2015

It’s not clear what the source of the photo in the Trump tweet is; the soldiers in the photo could be modern-day World War II reenactors. According to the most recent poll from Suffolk/USA Today, Trump leads the GOP field by three points.

Update, Tuesday 3:40pm ET: And the answers begin to trickle in…

Found @realDonaldTrump‘s german soldier stock image here (searched “world war II soldiers”) http://t.co/GKkcNTUKpmpic.twitter.com/ysWGeePZIr

— Reed F. Richardson (@reedfrich) July 14, 2015

Update 2, Tuesday 3:46pm ET: This GIF, by our own Ivylise Simones, is perfect:

GIF: Ivylise Simones

Update 3, Tuesday 4:00pm ET: The Trump campaign says an intern did it:

Trump campaign responds: An intern did it. pic.twitter.com/oZBJAtwffl

— Eric Geller (@ericgeller) July 14, 2015

9b. “In an almost impossibly bizarre coincidence . . . . George’s brother John is also a stock photographer, and took the image of Nazi reenactors that was accidentally used in a flier for the campaign of North Carolina state legislator Tim Spear in 2010. . . .”

“The Insane Story Behind Donald Trump’s Deleted Nazi Tweet” by Tim McDonnell; Mother Jones; 7/14/2015.

. . . . Cairns is a British freelance stock photographer and photography instructor who says he frequents war reenactments as good locations to pick up realistic-looking stock images—not just of Nazis, but also of American GIs and other soldiers. . . .

. . . . In an almost impossibly bizarre coincidence, this isn’t the first time the Cairns family has been caught up in a photo kerfuffle involving Nazis and American politicians. George’s brother John is also a stock photographer, and took the image of Nazi reenactors that was accidentally used in a flier for the campaign of North Carolina state legislator Tim Spear in 2010.

“I have photos of American soldiers as well,” Cairns said. “But for some reason, [American GOP] politicians seem to be downloading Nazis.” . . .

10a. Sometimes, things aren’t all that hard to figure out and don’t need a lot of explanation. The GOP, in general, has used dog whistles to energize people who normally should not vote for a party of the rich, which the Republicans most surely are.

A recent tweet by “The Donald” attacking Hillary speaks for itself. Just check this out!

This sparked an online Fuhrer, er, furor!

We already knew that Donald Trump kept a book of Hitler’s speeches by his bed, according to a 1990 interview of Ivana Trump.

It is not surprising that the tweet did not originate with Trump, but with a Nazi online message board.

David Duke has endorsed Trump’s re-tweet, buttressing its anti-Semitic message.

“Trump Sparks Online Firestorm with Anti-Clinton Tweet Featuring Star of David” by Caitlin Dickson; Yahoo News; 7/02/2016.

Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump drew widespread rebuke on Saturday with a tweet featuring a Star of David while accusing rival Hillary Clinton of corruption.

The star, a symbol of Judaism, was on a backdrop of $100 bills and paired with a Fox News poll in which a majority of respondents described Clinton as corrupt. Next to Clinton’s face was a red Star of David bearing the words “Most Corrupt Candidate Ever!” . . . .

10b. It is not surprising that the tweet did not originate with Trump, but with a Nazi online message boardTrump has made this a signature maneuver of his campaign.

“Donald Trump’s “Star of David” Hillary Clinton Meme Was Created by White Supremacists” by Anthony Smith; News.Mic; 7/03/2016.

Donald Trump tweeted a meme Saturday that used dog-whistle anti-Semitism to announce that his political rival, “Crooked Hillary,” had “made history.” The meme Trump tweeted prominently featured the Star of David — a holy symbol of the Jewish religion that Nazis attempted to pervert by forcing Jews over the age of 6 to sew it onto their clothing during Hitler’s reign.

Emblazoned onto the Star of David in Trump’s meme are the words “Most Corrupt Candidate Ever!”

The star lies atop a giant pile of money.
[see tweet]
Mic discovered Sunday that Donald Trump’s Twitter account wasn’t the first place the meme appeared. The image was previously featured on /pol/ — an Internet message board for the alt-right, a digital movement of neo-Nazis, anti-Semites and white supremacists newly emboldened by the success of Trump’s rhetoric — as early as June 22, over a week before Trump’s team tweeted it.
[see alt-right forum image]
Though the thread where the meme was featured no longer exists, you can find it by searching the URL in Archive.is, a “time capsule of the internet” that saves unalterable text and graphic of webpages. Doing so allows you to see the thread on /pol/ as it originally existed.

Of note is the file name of the photo, HillHistory.jpg, potentially a nod to the Neo-Nazi code for “HH,” or “Heil Hitler,” which the alt-right is fond of hiding in plain sight.

The watermark on the lower-left corner of the image leads to a Twitter account that regularly tweets violent, racist memes commenting on the state of geopolitical politics.
[see image]
Other examples of images tweeted by this account include violent propaganda about Muslims and refugees and racist images of Clinton:
[see tweet]
[see image]
[see image]
Mic previously reported white supremacists rally on the internet to expose what they believe to be a vast anti-white conspiracy, centuries old, in which Jews have paid off politicians and infiltrated the media to undermine Western society from the top down. The Clinton meme Trump tweeted — which first appeared on perhaps the biggest bastion of the anti-Semitic alt-right — has brought that same hateful paranoia into the mainstream.

One relationship of particular importance to their “anti-White conspiracy” is that between Jewish reporters and Hillary Clinton, whom they believe to be working in tandem to undermine the Western world, preventing nations like the U.S. from becoming more like their vision of utopia — a nation with racial purity among its core values.
[see image]
On Saturday, Trump deleted his original tweet of the meme and in its place uploaded an alteration that replaces the Star of David with a circle.
[see tweet]
In November, Trump retweeted a meme perpetuating the racist lie explicitly that black people committed more violent crimes against white people than any other race. That was found to have originated from the alt-right internet as well.

10c. David Duke has endorsed Trump’s re-tweet, buttressing its anti-Semitic message.

“Ex-KKK Leader David Duke Loved Trump’s Star Of David Tweet” by Katherine Krueger; Talking Points Memo Livewire; 7/05/2016.

Avid Donald Trump supporter and former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke was a big fan of the presumptive GOP nominee’s controversial tweet over the weekend, which was widely read as anti-Semitic.

After the Trump camp pulled an anti-Hillary Clinton tweet that included a six-point star and posted an edited version, Duke tweeted Saturday that he welcomes the exposure of “the hidden hand.”

Trump’s original tweet featured a meme, apparently plumbed from a corner of the white supremacist internet, labeling Clinton the “most corrupt candidate ever,” inside a six-point star and overlaid on a bed of money.
Trump later claimed the image was a “sheriff’s star” and blamed the “dishonest media” for labeling the image a Star of David. . . . .

11a. Check out Donald Trump’s bank of choice: Deutsche Bank! As the article below points out, it’s a long relationship going back to the early 90’s, with at least $2.5 billion lent. But there have been past differences too, especially following the crash of 2008 when Trump tried to wriggle out of his debt by claiming the crash was an act of god. And as a consequence of all the the commercial lending arm of Deutsche Bank basically wants nothing to do with Trump. But that’s ok, since the Private Bank branch has decided Trump is an ok customer. Or at least a good enough customer to lend Trump $300 million in recent years:

“When Donald Trump Needs a Loan, He Chooses Deutsche Bank” by Anupreeta Das; The Wall Street Journal; 3/20/2016.

Despite some clashes, the Republican front-runner has been a regular client of the German lender

One of Donald Trump’s closest allies on Wall Street is a now-struggling German bank.

While many big banks have shunned him, Deutsche Bank AG has been a steadfast financial backer of the Republican presidential candidate’s business interests. Since 1998, the bank has led or participated in loans of at least $2.5 billion to companies affiliated with Mr. Trump, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of public records and people familiar with the matter.

That doesn’t include at least another $1 billion in loan commitments that Deutsche Bank made to Trump-affiliated entities.

The long-standing connection makes Frankfurt-based Deutsche Bank, which has a large U.S. operation and has been grappling with reputational problems and an almost 50% stock-price decline, the financial institution with probably the strongest ties to the controversial New York businessman.

But the relations at times have been rocky. Deutsche Bank’s giant investment-banking unit stopped working with Mr. Trump after an acrimonious legal spat, even as another arm of the company continued to loan him money.

Other Wall Street banks, after doing extensive business with Mr. Trump in the 1980s and 1990s, pulled back in part due to frustration with his business practices but also because he moved away from real-estate projects that required financing, according to bank officials. Citigroup Inc., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Morgan Stanley are among the banks that don’t currently work with him.

At Goldman Sachs Group Inc., bankers “know better than to pitch” a Trump-related deal, said a former Goldman executive. Goldman officials say there is little overlap between its core investment-banking group and Mr. Trump’s businesses.

Deutsche Bank’s relationship with Mr. Trump dates to the 1990s. The bank, eager to expand in the U.S. via commercial-real-estate lending, set out to woo big New York developers such as Mr. Trump and Harry Macklowe.

One of the bank’s first loans to Mr. Trump, in 1998, was $125 million to renovate the office building at 40 Wall Street. More deals soon followed, with the bank agreeing over the next few years to loan or help underwrite bonds worth a total of more than $1.3 billion for Trump entities.

By 2005, Deutsche Bank had emerged as one of Mr. Trump’s leading bankers. That year, the German bank and others lent a Trump entity $640 million to build the 92-story Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago. Deutsche Bank officials badly wanted the deal because it came with a $12.5 million fee attached, said a person familiar with the matter.

Mr. Trump charmed the bankers, flying them on his private Boeing 727 jet, according to people who traveled with him.

But when the housing bubble burst, the relationship frayed.

In 2008, Mr. Trump failed to pay $334 million he owed on the Chicago loan because of lackluster sales of the building’s units. He then sued Deutsche Bank. His argument was that the economic crisis constituted a “force majeure”—an unforeseen event such as war or natural disaster—that should excuse the repayment until conditions improved.

His lawyers were inspired to invoke the clause after hearing former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan describe the crisis as a “once-in-a-century credit tsunami,” according to a person who worked on the case for Mr. Trump.

Mr. Trump also attacked Deutsche Bank’s lending practices and said that as a big bank, it was partially responsible for causing the financial crisis. He sought $3 billion in damages.

Deutsche Bank in turn sued Mr. Trump, saying it was owed $40 million that the businessman had personally guaranteed in case his company was unable to repay the loan.

Deutsche Bank argued that Mr. Trump had a cavalier history toward banks, quoting from his 2007 book, “Think Big And Kick Ass In Business And Life.”

“I figured it was the bank’s problem, not mine,” Mr. Trump wrote, according to the lawsuit. “What the hell did I care? I actually told one bank, ‘I told you you shouldn’t have loaned me that money. I told you that goddamn deal was no good.’”

The court rejected Mr. Trump’s arguments but the suit forced Deutsche Bank to the negotiating table. The two sides agreed to settle their suits out of court in 2009. The following year, they extended the original loan by five years. It was paid off in 2012—with the help of a loan from the German firm’s private bank.

While Deutsche Bank didn’t lose money on the deal, the fracas soured its investment bankers on working with Mr. Trump. “He was persona non grata after that,” said a banker who worked on the deal.

But not everyone within Deutsche Bank wanted to sever the relationship. The company’s private-banking arm, which caters to ultrarich families and individuals, picked up the slack, lending well over $300 million to Trump entities in the following years.

11b. The fact that Donald Trump recently borrowed a large sum a money to one of the financial world’s biggest serial regulatory violators does seem like the kind of thing that could become an issue in the 2016? At least it’s seems very possible. Especially since Deutsche Bank still faces multiple investigations, still really, really wants to see the post-crisis regulations go away, and Trump still has at least $100 million that it’s waiting for Trump to pay back:

“Trump Has a Conflict-of-Interest Problem No Other White House Candidate Ever Had” by Russ Choma and David Corn; Mother Jones; 6/01/2016.

He owes at least $100 million to a foreign bank that’s battled with US regulators.

In his most recent financial disclosure statement, Donald Trump notes he has billions of dollars in assets. But the presumptive GOP nominee also has a tremendous load of debt that includes five loans each over $50 million. (The disclosure form, which presidential candidates must submit, does not compel candidates to reveal the specific amount of any loans that exceed $50 million, and Trump has chosen not to provide details.) Two of those megaloans are held by Deutsche Bank, which is based in Germany but has US subsidiaries. And this prompts a question that no other major American presidential candidate has had to face: What are the implications of the chief executive of the US government being in hock for $100 million (or more) to a foreign entity that has tried to evade laws aimed at curtailing risky financial shenanigans, that was recently caught manipulating markets around the world, and that attempts to influence the US government?

11c. George Soros led a group of three hedge funds that lended Trump $160 million in high-interest loans which was on top of the ~$650 million from Deutsche Bank. And we already know what happened to those Deutsche Bank loans (it was paid off with a new loan from Deutsche Bank’s private bank).

But what about that $160 million high-interest mezzanine loan Soros helped finance? Well, it’s not easy to find much information on that, but it turns out someone created a blog, aptly named trumpsoroschicago.wordpress.com, with just a single post dedicated solely to elucidating what happened from public sources. And it sure looks like that high-interest loan was also forgiven in 2012 and there’s no indication it was forgiven by issuing a new loan, but instead just forgiven. In past discussion and analysis, we noted that Soros got his start in business “Aryanizing” Jewish property in Hungary during the Holocaust. This may well have been a springboard to operating as what we have termed “a Bormann Jew.”

If Trump was indeed unable to pay back both his Deutsche Bank and mezzanine loans, that sounds circumstantially odd. It would be an odd time for massive loan forgiveness when the high-end Chicago skyscraper market was looking pretty good in 2012. The condo units on the Trump Tower were basically sold out by 2014, so business was clearly pretty good in the wake of that round of loan forgiveness.

All in all, it’s a very strange business story.

“Did George Soros Free Donald Trump of a $312 Million Debt?” by sorostrumpchicago; Trumpsoroschicago.wordpress.com; 3/19;2016.

* In 2005 Trump started construction on his skyscraper the Trump International Hotel and Tower (Chicago)
* To build the tower, Trump received a loan from Deutsche Bank for $650 million
* Trump also received a $160 million mezzanine loan* from a group of private investors including George Soros, Fortress Investment Group and Blackacre Capital (The loan was estimated by the Wall Street Journal of having a total value as high as $360 million with accrued interest)
* By October 2008 Trump had sold nearly $600 million in condo and condo-hotel units, more than half of the total value of all the units in his tower
* After seven years (2005-2012) Trump was on his way to paying off his main construction loan to Deutsche Bank
* For reasons unexplained to the public, the majority of Trump’s mezzanine loan was quietly forgiven by the loan’s original lenders
* No media outlet covering the deal has put together the pieces and told the public that George Soros let Donald Trump off the hook for what has been valued between $82 and $312 million in debt
* Why would Soros give what amounts to a massive debt relief to Trump during a financially successful period in Trump’s life? Are these men friends, enemies or business partners?

We have come across information related to a long and bizarre financial deal between Donald J. Trump, George Soros, Fortress Investment Group and Blackacre Capital, a deal discovered by following a specific on-going money trail and likely partnership between these entities.

In 2005, when Trump began financing the construction of the tallest residential tower on the North American continent the Trump International Hotel and Tower (Chicago), he needed more than just the basic loan he had received from Deutsche Bank. Trump needed what is called a “mezzanine loan”, a loan which is far more expensive than a regular bank loan. This kind of loan needs to be paid off more quickly to avoid high interest payments. It also needs to be paid back in full to keep the lender from taking ownership of the underlying asset.

“Mezzanine financing is basically debt capital that gives the lender the rights to convert to an ownership or equity interest in the company if the loan is not paid back in time and in full…

…Since mezzanine financing is usually provided to the borrower very quickly with little due diligence on the part of the lender and little or no collateral on the part of the borrower, this type of financing is aggressively priced with the lender seeking a return in the 20-30% range.” 1

Soros along with Fortress and Blackacre came to Trump with just such a loan at a costly $160 million principal*. The The Wall Street Journal had valued the loan at as much as $360 million, depending on the length of time it accrued interest.

“Donald Trump has lined up three New York hedge funds, including money from billionaire George Soros, to invest $160 million in his Chicago skyscraper, a key piece in perhaps the largest construction financing in the city’s history, according to real estate sources and public documents… The massive financing, which sources say also will include a $650 million construction loan from Deutsche Bank…” 2

“Big names back Trump tower” Chicago Tribune – October 28, 2004

“A loan document says Mr. Trump could have to pay Fortress as much as $360 million, depending on how long the loan accrues interest. Combined with the Deutsche Bank senior loan, he would owe more than $1 billion in total.” 3

“In Chicago, Trump Hits Headwinds” The Wall Street Journal – October 29, 2008

By October 2008, the tower was almost complete and Trump had sold nearly $600 million in condo and condo-hotel units, more than half of the total value of all units in the tower.

“So far, Mr. Trump has lined up buyers for a bit less than $600 million of condo units and condo-hotel units in a residential market that has virtually seized up… He has closed around $200 million in sales so far, with roughly $380 million still in contract.”3

“In Chicago, Trump Hits Headwinds” The Wall Street Journal – October 29, 2008

In 2012, Trump continued to owe money to his lenders but sales of his condominiums had picked up and his tower had a 69% occupancy rate. As Crain’s Chicago put it: “The region’s housing and condo market is still mired in a historic slump. But when it comes to buying and selling in Chicago’s high-end condo market, life is surprisingly good… Condominium owners at the $850 million Trump International Hotel & Tower and other newer top-end buildings have, more often than not, experienced value appreciation when they sold in recent years.”4

While Trump was not yet making a profit on his tower, his sales and value appreciations were such that his building was generating significant revenue, more than enough revenue to pay back to his lenders large portions of his loans. As former New York real estate developer David Rose writes in his article “How to pay off a Skyscraper”:

“After a number of years have passed, several things are likely to have happened: 1) the mortgage has been significantly paid down; 2) the value of the underlying building has increased; and 3) the owner has waited for a time in the economic cycle where mortgage rates are low. At that point [they] will ‘refinance’ the original mortgage, and put the balance to work somewhere else where it can make even more money.”5

“How Long Does It Take To Pay Off a Skyscraper?” Slate – July 12, 2012

(Fortunately for Trump, favorable financial conditions existed in 2012. 6By all accounts, including his own, Trump was ready and able to pay off the loans for his Chicago tower. 7)

Yet Trump did not have to worry about paying back the majority of his mezzanine loan. A special group of lenders came in and erased a significant portion of this obligation.

That group was the original mezzanine loan lenders: Soros, Fortress and Blackacre; all of whom decided to forgive Trump’s future interest payments on the loan, selling it to him at the massively reduced price of $48 million. To put that in starker terms, Soros and the others effectively gave Trump possibly hundreds of millions of dollars in debt forgiveness, while cutting down the principal of his loan by $82 million**. Basically, Soros and the others forgave Trump as much as $312 million for no apparent reason.

“Donald Trump has paid $48 million to buy out junior creditors on his 92-story Chicago condominium and hotel project… The New York developer says he bought the debt, which had a face value of $130 million, back from a group of creditors led by Fortress Investment Group.” 8

“Trump buys out tower creditors” Crain’s Chicago Business– March 28, 2012

In a further twist to the story, in the same article from Chicago Business revealed: “After buying out the junior debt [the mezzanine loan], Mr. Trump says he now owes about $120 million on the building that comes due in 1½ years.”8

The aforementioned shows us that in 2012 Trump had already paid off most of the Deutsche Bank loan before Soros, etc. came in and wiped out most of his mezzainine debt. This raises the question, why wasn’t Trump expected by Soros, Fortress and Blackacre to pay back their riskier, high-interest mezzanine loan? Also, how was Trump able to pay down his Deutsche Bank loan – demonstrating the means to pay off all his loans – yet still have Soros and the others give him somewhere between $82 million and $312 million in debt forgiveness?

Additionally to that, why have we heard almost nothing about this gigantic giveaway to Trump? And why were Soros and Blackacre, two of the three main investors in the mezzanine loan, scrubbed from media’s coverage of the final debt forgiveness deal? What backroom agreements were made concerning this mezzanine loan?

And indeed, not only was this deal made in a cloaked manner, it may have been the most generous amount of debt forgiveness ever given on a mezzanine loan to a borrower who was in good financial health and who had a steadily appreciating asset, as was Trump and his Chicago tower.

Footnotes:

*Two articles quote the total for the mezzanine loan at $130 million, however due to the limited coverage of the deal we do not know at this time which is the true figure. 67

**If we were to rely on the original figure of the $160 million principal, this would be $112 million giveaway on the loan’s principle to Trump

Sources:

1. “Mezzanine Financing” Investopedia:http://www.investopedia.com/terms/m/mezzaninefinancing.asp
2. “Big names back Trump tower” Chicago Tribune – October 28, 2004:http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2004-10-28/news/0410280265_1_donald-trump-soros-fund-management-blackacre-institutional-capital-management
3. “In Chicago, Trump Hits Headwinds” The Wall Street Journal – October 29, 2008:http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB122523704293478077
4. “Trumped up: Trophy towers’ condos rise above housing slump” Crain’s Chicago Business – April 14, 2012:http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120414/ISSUE01/304149974/trumped-up-trophy-towers-condos-rise-above-housing-slump
5. “How Long Does It Take To Pay Off a Skyscraper?” Slate – July 12, 2012:http://www.slate.com/blogs/quora/2012/07/12/how_long_does_it_take_to_pay_off_a_skyscraper_.html
6. “Mortgage rates sink to new record low” CNN Money – June 7, 2012:http://money.cnn.com/2012/06/07/real_estate/mortgage-rates/
7. “The 400 Richest Americans – #134 Donald Trump” Forbes – Sept. 17, 2008:http://www.forbes.com/fdc/welcome_mjx.shtml
8. “Trump buys out tower creditors” Crain’s Chicago Business – March 28, 2012:http://www.chicagobusiness.com/realestate/20120328/CRED03/120329769/trump-buys-out-tower-creditors
9. “Trump sues lenders for more time to pay off loan on Tower” Chicago Real Estate Daily – November 07, 2008:http://www.chicagobusiness.com/realestate/20081107/CRED03/200031749/trump-sues-lenders-for-more-time-to-pay-off-loan-on-tower

11d. We conclude with review of the profound relationship of the Bormann capital network and Deutsche Bank:

Martin Bormann: Nazi in Exile; Paul Manning; Copyright 1981 [HC]; Lyle Stuart Inc.; ISBN 0-8184-0309-8; pp. 139, 205.

. . . . When Bormann gave the order for his representatives to resume purchases of American corporate stocks, it was usually done through the neutral countries of Switzerland and Argentina. From foreign exchange funds on deposit in Swiss banks and in Deutsche Sudamerikanishe Bank, the Buenos Aires branch of Deutsche Bank, large demand deposits were placed in the principal money-center banks of New York City; National City (now Citibank), Chase (now Chase Manhattan N.A.), Manufacturers and Hanover (now manufacturers Hanover Trust), Morgan Guaranty, and Irving Trust. Such deposits are interest-free and the banks can invest this money as they wish, thus turning tidy profits for themselves. In return, they provide reasonable services such as the purchase of stocks and transfer or payment of money on demand by customers of Deutsche bank such as representatives of the Bormann business organizations and and Martin Bormann himself, who has demand accounts in three New York City banks. They continue to do so. The German investment in American corporations from these sources exceeded $5 billion and made the Bormann economic structure a web of power and influence. The two German-owned banks of Spain, Banco Aleman Transatlantico (now named Banco Comercial Transatlantico), and Banco Germanico de la America del Sur, S.A., a subsidiary of Deutsche Bank served to channel German money from Spain to South America, where further investments were made. . . .

. . . . The [FBI] file revealed that he had been banking under his own name from his office in Germany in Deutsche Bank of Buenos Aires since 1941; that he held one joint account with the Argentinian dictator Juan Peron, and on August 4, 5 and 14, 1967, had written checks on demand accounts in first National City Bank (Overseas Division) of New York, The Chase Manhattan Bank, and Manufacturers Hanover Trust Co., all cleared through Deutsche Bank of Buenos Aires. . . .

Discussion

6 comments for “FTR #920 The Trumpenkampfverbande, Part 3: The Underground Reich Emerges Into Plain View”

  1. Josh Marshall has a write up of last night’s big immigration speech by Donald Trump, which was expected to be a big let down for the ardent xenophobes in Trumps’ base after all the hints in recent weeks that Trump would be watering down his mass deportation plans. So was it the kind of speech that left his base wanting? Oh yes. Wanting more. Much more:

    Talking Points Memo Editor’s Blog

    Blood and Race and Trump

    By Josh Marshall
    Published September 1, 2016, 12:43 AM EDT

    We’ve now heard Trump’s big immigration policy speech.

    Let me start with a general comment on tone. This was as wild and as unbridled a speech as I’ve seen from Trump. Even if you couldn’t understand English, it would be stunning to watch the slashing hand gestures, the red face, the yelling. It’s hard to imagine any presidential candidate in living memory giving such a speech. And again, this is if you didn’t know what the words even meant.

    As the speech was unfolding, I said something on Twitter that I’m sure many will find extreme or beyond the pale. But watching this speech, compared to the press conference today in Mexico City, what kept coming to my mind was the contrast between Hitler’s uniformed rally speeches from the hustings and the suited, statesman Hitler we see in the old news reels in Munich and at other iconic moments in the late 1930s. Hitler is sui generis, of course. His crimes are incomparable. But the demagogic style, the frenzied invocation familial blood sacrificed to barbaric outsiders – these are not unique to him. When we see this lurid, stab-in-the-back incitement, the wild hyperbole, the febrile railing against outsiders who will make us no longer a country – the similarities are real. More than anything, perhaps the most chilling part of this day is the contrast between the two men – a measured, calm statesman figure we saw this afternoon and this railing, angry demagogue figure who captured the emotional tenor of Klan rally. As I said, the ability to shift from one persona to the other is a sign of danger in itself.

    With that, let me go to the specifics. On balance, Trump doubled-down on just about everything.

    He’ll build the Wall and Mexico will pay for the Wall. Check and check. Its almost a catechism.

    On mass deportation, there was more obfuscation than change. Trump said everyone without proper documentation is subject to deportation – the violent and the patriotic, the productive and the dependent are all together. He said there are some two million alien criminals in the country who will be deported immediately. On top of that, he said there is a large but unspecified number of additional aliens who are also criminals and they’ll be deported immediately too.

    I believe the federal government actually puts that number between 600k and 700k. So Trump’s number is roughly three times the actual number and then many more on top of that. One million more? Five million more? You can take your pick depending on your mood and what you want to hear. Wild fabulation about numbers and facts was a signature of the speech.

    Notably, Trump also said that the federal government has no idea how many undocumented immigrants are in the country. It could be 3 million or 30 million, he said. These remarks have only two purposes – to deepen the sense of chaos and to kick dust into any specific discussion or examination of just what Trump proposes to do.

    He has apparently dropped the “deportation force” in favor of a “deportation task force” created within ICE to speed mass deportation. Again, obfuscation not difference.

    Finally he made clear there is no path to citizenship or legal residency for any undocumented immigrants. The only path is to leave the country and return through normal channels. And this can only happen after tighter strictures are placed on legal immigration. Even under current law this amounts to decades out of the country.

    This is all certainly a more complicated explanation of his policy than what Trump said in the primaries – that all 11 million will have to be deported and fast. But substantively, it sounds like the same policy, with more obfuscation, more bows to prioritization and some cognizance of the scale of the task. But substantively it’s the same.

    We’ve been at this for two or three weeks – dropping his hardline positions, picking them back up, briefly going a la carte. If this is the final statement, we’re basically where we started, just with a few garnishes about our love for the Mexican people and the wonders of immigration that happened in the past. The flurry of bogus specifics is meant to obscure the big picture: everyone has to go.

    “As the speech was unfolding, I said something on Twitter that I’m sure many will find extreme or beyond the pale. But watching this speech, compared to the press conference today in Mexico City, what kept coming to my mind was the contrast between Hitler’s uniformed rally speeches from the hustings and the suited, statesman Hitler we see in the old news reels in Munich and at other iconic moments in the late 1930s. Hitler is sui generis, of course. His crimes are incomparable. But the demagogic style, the frenzied invocation familial blood sacrificed to barbaric outsiders – these are not unique to him. When we see this lurid, stab-in-the-back incitement, the wild hyperbole, the febrile railing against outsiders who will make us no longer a country – the similarities are real. More than anything, perhaps the most chilling part of this day is the contrast between the two men – a measured, calm statesman figure we saw this afternoon and this railing, angry demagogue figure who captured the emotional tenor of Klan rally. As I said, the ability to shift from one persona to the other is a sign of danger in itself.”

    That was nice of him to keep any non-English-speaking fans in mind by using so much non-verbal Hiterlian flourish. And based on the verbal Hiterlian flourish it sure doesn’t sound like the kind of speech that let any of his hardcore supporters down. And, lo and behold, his hardcore supporters were enthusiastically not let down:

    Talking Points Memo Editor’s blog

    Top White Supremacists & Anti-Semites React to Trump

    By Josh Marshall
    Published September 1, 2016, 12:23 AM EDT

    A sampling of leading white supremacists and anti-semites reacting to Trump’s speech. Preview: They loved it!

    David Duke

    Excellent speech by Donald Trump tonight. Deport criminal aliens, end catch and release, enforce immigration laws & America First.— David Duke (@DrDavidDuke) September 1, 2016

    Jared Taylor

    #TrumpAZ Hell of a speech. Almost perfect. Logical, deeply felt, and powerfully delivered. Now watch how the media twists it.— Jared Taylor (@jartaylor) September 1, 2016

    Kevin MacDonald

    Great Trump speech! Deport not just criminals, but welfare users. Illegals can’t work; immigration in the interests of citizens,— Kevin MacDonald (@TOOEdit) September 1, 2016

    #TrumpAZ Hell of a speech. Almost perfect. Logical, deeply felt, and powerfully delivered. Now watch how the media twists it.”

    So that’s the big expected “softening” of Trump’s immigration plan: any doubts about Trump’s allegiance to their agenda has clearly softened amongst white nationalist like David Duke or Jared Taylor.

    In alternate-universe-related news, Donald Trump talked about how his speech last night represented a “softening” of his immigration plan today:

    Talking Points Memo Livewire

    Words Don’t Matter: Trump Claims There Was ‘Softening’ In Immigration Plan!

    By Lauren Fox
    Published September 1, 2016, 10:42 AM EDT

    Donald Trump told conservative talk show host Laura Ingraham Thursday that there has been a “softening” on his immigration plan.

    After delivering a hardline speech on immigration enforcement that included gruesome accounts of murdered Americans at the hands of undocumented immigrations, Trump seems to be a bit confused about the definition of “softening.”

    “Look, we do it in a very humane way, and we’re going to see with the people who are in this country. Obviously, I want to get the gang members out, the drug peddlers out. We’ve got a lot of people in this country that you can’t have, and those people you can’t have,” Trump said. “And then we’re going to make a decision at a later date once everything is stabilized. I think you’re going to see there is quite a bit of softening.”

    Trump’s speech had been billed as an opportunity for the candidate to try and expand his base of support from the fringe right and base supporters to a wider swath of the Republican Party. When he got to the mic, however, Trump was true to his primary self.

    “Look, we do it in a very humane way, and we’re going to see with the people who are in this country. Obviously, I want to get the gang members out, the drug peddlers out. We’ve got a lot of people in this country that you can’t have, and those people you can’t have…And then we’re going to make a decision at a later date once everything is stabilized. I think you’re going to see there is quite a bit of softening.”

    That’s right, the scary man who just gave a red-faced speech filled with Hiterlian flourish on the perils posed to the US by Latino immigrants wants you to know that he’s totally going to soften his stance on this issue and be much more humane than people expect. He’s not sure how much more humane or how much he’ll “soften”, but he wants to you know it’s totally coming. Trust him! *wink*

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 1, 2016, 7:22 pm
  2. @ Pterrafractyl–

    Indeed! Note Marshall’s observation: ” . . . But watching this speech, compared to the press conference today in Mexico City, what kept coming to my mind was the contrast between Hitler’s uniformed rally speeches from the hustings and the suited, statesman Hitler we see in the old news reels in Munich and at other iconic moments in the late 1930s. Hitler is sui generis, of course. His crimes are incomparable. But the demagogic style, the frenzied invocation familial blood sacrificed to barbaric outsiders – these are not unique to him. When we see this lurid, stab-in-the-back incitement, the wild hyperbole, the febrile railing against outsiders who will make us no longer a country – the similarities are real. More than anything, perhaps the most chilling part of this day is the contrast between the two men – a measured, calm statesman figure we saw this afternoon and this railing, angry demagogue figure who captured the emotional tenor of Klan rally. As I said, the ability to shift from one persona to the other is a sign of danger in itself. . . .”

    The comparison is apt and is by no means coincidental:

    http://www.vanityfair.com/magazine/2015/07/donald-ivana-trump-divorce-prenup-marie-brenner

    ” . . . .Last April, perhaps in a surge of Czech nationalism, Ivana Trump told her lawyer Michael Kennedy that from time to time her husband reads a book of Hitler’s collected speeches, My New Order, which he keeps in a cabinet by his bed … Hitler’s speeches, from his earliest days up through the Phony War of 1939, reveal his extraordinary ability as a master propagandist,” Marie Brenner wrote. . . In the ‘Vanity Fair article,’ Ivana Trump told a friend that her husband’s cousin, John Walter ‘clicks his heels and says, ‘Heil Hitler,’ when visiting Trump’s office. . . .”

    Ain’t we got fun!

    Stay Tuned,

    Dave

    Posted by Dave Emory | September 1, 2016, 7:32 pm
  3. From SPLC’s Extremist Files “The Alternative Right is a
    term coined in 2008 by Richard Bertrand Spencer, who
    heads the nationalist think tank known as the National
    Policy Institute…” And further down “Trump is a hero
    to the Alt-Right.” Considering white nationalists hate
    everything “politically correct” it’s amusing, in an ironic
    way, that they’ve come up with such a PC label as Alt-
    Right, albeit PC for fascists.
    Dave in FTR #533 The Florida Argentine Connection
    you presented a stunning fact regarding the wife of
    Jeb Bush. “Columba Bush’s sister is married to John P.
    Schmitz, a beneficiary of the fellowship programs
    subsumed under the Carl Duisberg Gesellschaft and
    the brother of Joseph Schmitz…”
    While it’s apparent that the Alternative Right networking
    of Stephen Bannon, Richard Spencer, Jared Taylor etc.
    constitutes a fascist fifth column in the U.S. (augmenting
    old hands like David Duke) I wonder to what extent the
    Berlin Brigade of Laura Poitras, Jakob Applebaum and
    Sarah Harrison might be receiving financial support from
    the Carl Duisberg Society. All three are foreign nationals
    residing in Berlin, much like Mohammed Atta, though
    based in Hamburg, was involved in a joint American-
    German effort that trafficked him around Syria, Turkey
    and his home country Egypt prior to 911.

    Posted by Dennis | September 5, 2016, 6:06 pm
  4. @Dennis–

    Yes, indeed!

    Don’t forget a couple of things: John P. Schmitz was working with Matthias Wissman under his Robert Bosch fellowship, a German MP involved with the CDU funding scandal and the first German counsel working with Wilmer, Cutler, and Pickering when the firm was representing German and Swiss defendants in Holocaust-compensation lawsuits.

    Two other members of the WikiLeaks/Snowden “op” team in Germany are Peter Sunde, founder of the Carl Lundstrom-funded Pirate Bay site, on which WikiLeaks first held forth and Sarah Harrison, the WikiLeaker who guided Snowden from China to Russia.

    I’ll be coming back to the high-profile hacks in FTR #922.

    One more about the Trumpenkampfverbande.

    One thing driving me nuts is the fact that the media are covering for Trump–particularly the so-called “progressive’ media, which continue to disseminate the untenable position that there is no difference between the Democrats and the Republicans.

    That is not just wrong, but EVIL.

    Just check out “Consortium News,” which has done some great work on Ukraine and U.S. support for jihadists.

    They are attacking Hillary day and night, often with multiple articles on the same subject on the same or adjacent days.

    Paul Krugman had a great column today, (Labor Day/Monday–9/5).

    The media are doing the same thing to Hillary that they did to Al Gore.

    This is infuriating, disgusting, depressing and more than a little evil. (Can evil even be “little”?)

    It is reminiscent of the German Communist Party, which urged its members to vote for Hitler and the Nazis in the 1932 elections, because they felt Hitler’s ascension would push Germany to the left and because “the social democrats are worse than Hitler.”

    Famous last words.

    Best,

    Dave

    Posted by Dave Emory | September 5, 2016, 6:57 pm
  5. I concur completely. The manner in which the presidential campaign is unfolding resembles Gore Bush 2000 with such an air of inevitability I’m almost afraid the debates will be anticlimactic. The email non- scandal has Clinton mired in quicksand simply because MSM and progressives have trivialized and misrepresented the truth. For example no emails were composed and sent by Clinton. Former CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien just accused the media, in their false equivalency of the Trump and Clinton campaigns, of “softening the ground for white supremacy.” Finally a thoughtful remark got through on CNN.

    Posted by Dennis | September 5, 2016, 8:10 pm
  6. So, is the Trump campaign actually super proud of the fact that his campaign found 88 former generals who are willing to publicly endorse the campaign? Or is Trump just excited to get another excuse to blow a neo-Nazi dog-whistle by touting the 88 former generals backing the campaign? Well, as the article below notes, 88 generals is actually far, far below the support of 500 former generals that Mitt Romney received in 2012. So, since this is the Trump campaign we’re talking about here, it’s looking like the latter:

    Mother Jones

    Trump Announces 88 Top Former Military Officials Backing Him. Romney Had 500.
    A YUGE drop!

    David Corn
    Sep. 6, 2016 10:28 AM

    Remember the Democratic convention, when Hillary Clinton was ringingly endorsed by a squad of top former military officials, led by retired General John Allen, who delivered one of the more rousing speeches of the week? That event and a host of subsequent endorsements from former military leaders and foreign policy experts have made it seem that Clinton has the edge over Donald Trump in drawing national security professionals to her cause. (Last month, a group of 50 GOP national security wonks signed a letter declaring that Trump “would be a dangerous President and would put at risk our country’s national security and well-being.”) Now Trump is fighting back. On Monday, he released a list of 88 former generals and admirals who back his presidential bid.

    The New York Times notes that a handful of these Trumpers are “known for making controversial statements. The paper cites retired Lt. General William Boykin, “who was criticized by President George W. Bush for describing the battle against Islamist terrorists as a religious proxy fight between a ‘Christian nation’ and the ‘idol’ of Islam.” It also points out that retired Lt. Gen. Thomas G. McInerney, a Fox News analyst who is on the list, “has previously submitted court documents challenging President Obama’s eligibility to serve as president, accusing him of not having been born in the United States, an accusation Mr. Trump himself once raised.” (Once raised? How about championed like a conspiracy-theory wingnut?)

    It’s no surprise that a Republican candidate who has bashed the Iran nuclear deal and called for spending more money on the military could round up this band of former generals and admirals. But here’s the real story: Mitt Romney, during the 2012 campaign, had 500 retired generals and admirals on his side. That group took out an ad in the Washington Times to show their support for the then-Republican nominee. And the Romney crew had much more star power than Trump’s posse. As the Washington Times then reported, “The [Romney] list contains a number of prominent four-star admirals and generals, including five former members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.”

    So as Trump preps—or doesn’t prep—for a candidates forum on national security hosted by NBC and MSNBC on Wednesday night, the news really isn’t that he found four score and eight retired military officers to back him; it’s that this is a significant drop from the amount of support that the last GOP nominee attracted from retired military bigwigs. In fact, it’s a huge retreat.

    “So as Trump preps—or doesn’t prep—for a candidates forum on national security hosted by NBC and MSNBC on Wednesday night, the news really isn’t that he found four score and eight retired military officers to back him; it’s that this is a significant drop from the amount of support that the last GOP nominee attracted from retired military bigwigs. In fact, it’s a huge retreat.”

    So have we moved past the white supremacist retweeting phase of the Trump campaign’s neo-Nazi dog-whistling and are now at the neo-Nazi numerology phase? Or was this just a coincidence? It’s certainly possible it’s a coincidence. That’s going to happen even in the midst of a neo-Nazi dog-whistle campaign. It’s possible that the campaign’s decision to publish the list with numbers next to each name, as opposed to just publishing one big long list names, wasn’t at all intended to highlight that exactly 88 people signed the document. It’s possible. It’s also possible that a campaign that has made neo-Nazi dog-whistles its specialty totally didn’t realize that it was once again flirting with a neo-Nazi dog-whistle by highlighting precisely 88 military backers behind Trump’s vision. It’s possible.

    That’s the thing about a stoichastic neo-Nazi dog-whistle campaign: When the campaign’s signal is hidden in the noise, you’re inevitably going to hear a lot of noise along the way. Maybe you’re hearing a neo-Nazi dog-whistle. Or maybe it’s just the wind blowing through the trees. But when there’s a major neo-Nazi dog-whistle campaign going on, it sort of doesn’t matter whether or not a particular whistle you’re hearing was some sort of neo-Nazi shout-out or not. You’re whistling past the graveyard either way.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 6, 2016, 3:04 pm

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