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Russell Brand Finds out Who’s Boss

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COMMENT: A recent incident at a GQ party highlights the role of Third Reich veterans and money in the contemporary German economy.

Comedian Russell Brand was thrown out of an awards ceremony for taking note of the Nazi links of Hugo Boss, the founder of the global clothing giant that carries his name.

Boss began making uniforms for the Nazis in the mid-twenties.

Joining the Nazi Party two years before Hitler’s ascension, Hugo Boss prospered making uniforms for the SS among other Nazi party formations. After the commencement of hostilities, his company made uniforms for the army. 

Eventually, Boss’s firm employed forced laborers in its operations, and agreed after the war to pay reparations.

A global force in the fashion industry, the firm undoubtedly operates in conjunction with the Bormann capital network, which dominates corporate Germany and much of the world’s financial and manufacturing infrastructure.

We also note that the international athletic wear brands Adidas and Puma also have Nazi party members as founders. Adolf Dassler and his brother Rudolf were Nazi party members–the latter also allegedly a member of the SS. Adi founded Adidas, Rudolph Puma. (See text excerpts below.)

“Shame­ful Truth about Hugo Boss’s Links to the Nazis Revealed: As Rus­sell Brand Is Thrown out of a Party for Accus­ing Fash­ion Designer of Help­ing Hitler” by Guy Walters; Daily Mail; 9/5/2013.

EXCERPT: There’s noth­ing like the pres­ence of some Nazis to ruin a per­fectly good party.

On Tues­day night, the come­dian Rus­sell Brand was thrown out of GQ magazine’s Men of the Year Awards after-show for mak­ing jibes about the event’s spon­sor, Hugo Boss, and the fash­ion company’s his­toric links to the Nazi party.

While on stage, Brand told the gath­ered celebri­ties and politi­cians, ‘If any­one knows a bit about his­tory and fash­ion, you know it was Hugo Boss who made uni­forms for the Nazis.’

He then added, with less than sub­tle irony, ‘But they looked f***ing fan­tas­tic, let’s face it, while they were killing peo­ple on the basis of their reli­gion and sexuality.’ . . . .

. . . . . Among one of Boss’s ear­li­est clients was a tex­tiles dis­trib­u­tor called Rudolf Born, which com­mis­sioned Hugo Boss to pro­duce some brown shirts for an organ­i­sa­tion called the ‘National Social­ist Party’, later, to become bet­ter known as the Nazis.

Style: Hugo Boss is now a global fash­ion powerhouse

By the late Twen­ties, the grow­ing Nazi Party had become a good client. And when the Party sup­plied Hugo Boss (as it did other man­u­fac­tur­ers) the pro­duc­tion tem­plates for its uni­forms, it appears that Boss did not see the rela­tion­ship in any­thing but com­mer­cial terms.

After all, Boss pro­duced uni­forms for many organ­i­sa­tions, includ­ing the police and the postal ser­vice, and the appar­ently apo­lit­i­cal Boss was happy to make clothes for who­ever paid their bills.

How­ever, on April 1, 1931, Boss took a step that would see his name — and brand — for­ever asso­ci­ated with Nazism. He joined the Nazi Party and was given the rel­a­tively low mem­ber­ship num­ber of 508,889.

Boss’s rea­sons for becom­ing a Nazi com­par­a­tively early were twofold. First, as a busi­ness­man, it made com­mer­cial sense, as it made it eas­ier for Boss to win con­tracts from the Nazis who were increas­ingly com­ing to dom­i­nate every aspect of Ger­man life.

Sec­ond, Boss believed that Hitler was the only man who could lift Ger­many out of its eco­nomic doldrums.

Such a busi­nesslike atti­tude was not excep­tional. There were cer­tainly bet­ter men who refused to do busi­ness with the Party, but though Boss was happy to sign con­tracts with them, he was not a rabid Nazi. He was sim­ply a pragmatist.

Partly thanks to his mem­ber­ship of the party, the Nazis were good to Boss. By 1933, he was able to adver­tise that he made clothes not only for the SS, but also for the Hitler Youth and the Brown­shirts — the para­mil­i­tary wing of the Nazi Party.

Then in 1938, busi­ness sky­rock­eted when Boss won con­tracts to make army uni­forms. By 1940, the com­pany was turn­ing over some 1,000,000 Reichs­marks, com­pared to 200,000 Reichs­marks in 1936.

How­ever, it was still far from being a major man­u­fac­turer. In 1940, Boss was employ­ing some 250 work­ers, which made it a small to medium-sized firm.

Like many, Boss found it hard to find employ­ees dur­ing the war, and this is where the story does turn truly dark.
Unable to fill roles, the com­pany found itself employ­ing forced work­ers from the occu­pied countries.

Dur­ing the course of the war, Boss used 140 such labour­ers and for a period of around eight months from Octo­ber 1940, the work­force was swelled by 40 French prisoners-of-war.

Although Boss’s fac­tory was not part of a con­cen­tra­tion camp — and his labour­ers were not pris­on­ers — the con­di­tions were dreadful. . . .

. . . . After the war, Boss was ‘de-nazified’. He was clas­si­fied as an active sup­porter of Nazism, was fined 100,000 marks, and was stripped of the right to vote and run a business.

How­ever, Boss appealed, and he was even­tu­ally clas­si­fied as a ‘fol­lower’, a lesser cat­e­gory, which meant that he was not regarded as an active pro­moter of Nazism. . . . .

“Adolf Dassler”; Wikipedia

EXCERPT: . . . . With the rise of Adolf Hitler in the 1930s, both Dassler brothers joined the Nazi Party, with Rudolf reputed as being the more ardent National Socialist.[1] Rudolf was drafted, and later captured, while Adi stayed behind to produce boots for the Wehrmacht and then broke away from the Nazi Party.[2] The war exacerbated the differences between the brothers and their wives. Rudolf, upon his capture by American troops, was suspected of being a member of the SS, information supposedly supplied by none other than his brother Adi.[3]

By 1948, the rift between the brothers widened. Rudolf left the company to found Puma on the other side of town (across the Aurach River), and Adolf Dassler renamed the company Adidas after his own nickname. (Adi Dassler). . . .

“Rudolf Dassler”; Wikipedia

EXCERPT: . . . . Rudolf Dassler (26 March 1898 in Herzogenaurach, (Germany) – 27 October 1974 in Herzogenaurach) was the German founder of the sportswear company PUMA and the older brother of Adidas founder, Adolf “Adi” Dassler. The brothers were partners in a shoe company Adi started, Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik (Dassler Brothers Shoe Factory). Rudi joined in 1924, however the brothers became rivals following World War II and started their own companies in 1948.

Initially calling the new company “Ruda” (‘Ru’dolf Dassler), it was soon changed to its present name of Puma. Puma is the word for cougar in German as well as other languages, such as Spanish, Italian, French, Portuguese and Polish. . . .

 

Discussion

One comment for “Russell Brand Finds out Who’s Boss”

  1. http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/coco-chanel-traitor-nazi-spy-4744650

    Coco Chanel was a TRAITOR and a Nazi spy who shared her bed with a Gestapo officer

    Dec 03, 2014 23:46
    By Warren Manger

    She might be better known for her perfume and her little black dresses but the iconic French designer had a dark past few know about

    She is best remembered as the woman who changed the face of the fashion industry.

    But there was another side of Coco Chanel that was every bit as dark as her famous Little Black Dresses.

    Newly discovered documents prove she was a Nazi spy who shared a bed with a senior Gestapo officer and tried to convince Britain to end the war.

    The Nazis chose her to negotiate a truce with Britain because she was already a friend of Winston Churchill.

    And that friendship may have been the only thing that saved her from the revenge of the French Resistance after the war ended.

    Official Nazi papers found in French Defence Ministry archives show that Chanel was recruited by the Nazi military intelligence division, the Abwehr, and given an agent number – F-7124.

    She was also given her own code name, Westminster, a reference to her affair with the Duke of Westminster 20 years earlier.spit

    The Nazi papers, now the subject of a bombshell new French TV documentary, appear to prove what historians have suspected for many years.

    After the war the French government claimed many of the country’s favourite celebrities joined the Resistance, or at the very least boycotted the Nazis after the German army occupied Paris in June 1940.

    In reality many cosied up to their new masters.

    Historian Henry Gidel says: “The revelations about Coco Chanel show the French ­official line that the country’s stars boycotted the Nazis are a sham.

    “The documentary makers have also raised awkward questions about the connections of singers Edith Piaf and Maur­ice Chevalier.”

    Piaf and Chevalier are now also suspected to have been Nazi agents and both saw their careers flourish as a result. Piaf even performed a series of private concerts for senior German officers.

    The late US historian Hal Vaughan, who lived in Paris and wrote a book about Chanel’s Nazi links, said last year: “Chanel didn’t believe in anything except fashion. She believed in beautiful clothes, she believed in her business. She didn’t care about Hitler or politics or Nazism.

    “Chanel was a consummate opportunist. She gravitated to power and the Nazis were in power.

    Hulton Archive Winston Churchill (1874 – 1965) accompanied by his son Randolph (1911 – 1968) and Coco Chanel
    Friends in high places: Winston Churchill accompanied by his son Randolph and Coco Chanel

    “This is definitely something that a lot of people would have preferred to put aside, to forget, to just go on selling Chanel scarves and jewellery.”

    During the Nazi occupation of Paris, Chanel lived in a luxurious suite at the Ritz Hotel, which was also the French ­headquarters of the German air force.

    She promptly embarked on an affair with Baron Hans Gunther von Dincklage, a high-ranking Gestapo officer who was honoured by Hitler and propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels.

    He was also an intelligence expert who had been running espionage operations in France during the 1930s.

    Chanel was 57 when the occupation began in 1940 and Dincklage was 13 years younger.

    But the pair remained lovers for 10 years and fled to Switzerland together after the war.

    Chanel was prepared to use her German contacts to protect her wealth and also tried to exploit the grotesque Nazi ­“Aryanisation” laws which banned Jews from owning businesses.

    The designer hoped to snatch back her perfume company and the rights to the famous Chanel No 5 scent, which she had sold to the Jewish Wertheimer brothers in 1924.

    However, she was thwarted when she discovered that the Wertheimers, who had already fled to the safety of America, had sold their stake in the business to a non-Jew, invalidating her claim.

    Getty Hugh Grosvenor, 2nd Duke of Westminster
    Lovers: Hugh Grosvenor, 2nd Duke of Westminster

    It is now believed that Chanel was enlisted into the Abwehr by the French aristocrat and German double-agent Baron Louis de Vaufreland in the summer of 1941.

    He may have cemented her recruitment with a promise that her nephew Andre would be released from a PoW camp.

    Her first mission was to go with Vaufreland to Madrid and help him identify Nazi sympathisers and recruit them as potential spies.

    Then in 1943 she travelled to Berlin with her Nazi lover to offer her services as a double agent to SS chief Heinrich Himmler.

    As a result she was sent to Madrid on a second mission for Himmler himself.

    The war had turned against Germany and some Nazis wanted to break with Hitler and negotiate a separate truce with Britain.

    Chanel was seen as the perfect person to do that.

    After all, she knew British PM Winston Churchill from her days as the lover of Hugh Grosvenor, Britain’s richest man, the 2nd Duke of Westminster and a known anti-Semite.

    The Prime Minister had been a regular visitor to the Rosehall Estate, their Scottish love nest, which Chanel had decorated.

    But the plan failed because Churchill never responded to her.

    Getty Coco Chanel, French couturier. Paris, 1936
    Icon: Coco Chanel, French couturier

    British intelligence already knew that Chanel had quite literally jumped into bed with the enemy – details of her meetings in Berlin were passed on by a Nazi defector.

    Or Churchill may simply have decided he had no time to talk politics with a fashion designer as the Second World War reached its climax.

    Historian Henry Gidel says: “Chanel displayed incredible megalomania and naivety in imagining that she could change Churchill’s mind.”

    A fortnight after Paris was liberated in August 1944 two men from the French Resistance arrived at the Ritz to escort Chanel, then 61, to the offices of the “clean-up committee” that dealt with Nazi collaborators.

    A few hours later she was released.

    It was a narrow escape given her wartime exploits, especially as most women who slept with a Nazi were paraded through the streets with their heads shaved.

    Several explanations have been put forward to explain why she got off so lightly.

    The French authorities were undoubtedly keen to deny that many of their biggest celebrities had done deals with the Nazis as they tried to re-unify the country and restore a sense of national pride.

    They are also unlikely to have been privy to secret British files that revealed how deeply the designer had been drawn into the Nazi war machine.

    And it has been claimed that Churchill, or even the British royal family, ­intervened to ensure she escaped punishment.

    Getty Edith Piaf
    Edith Piaf

    According to Chanel’s great-niece Gabrielle Palasse Labrunie she told her family “Churchill had me freed” when she returned home.

    Chanel promptly fled to Switzerland with her lover Dincklage, leaving Paris in her chauffeured Cadillac, and only returned to France in 1949, when she escaped punishment for a second time while giving testimony at the trial of the traitor Vaufreland.

    She returned to Paris permanently in 1954 and ­immediately set up home at her wartime residence, the Ritz Hotel, where she lived for the next 17 years until her death.

    She even set up her own fashion house financed by none other than Pierre Wertheimer, one of the Jews she had sought to dispossess using Nazi laws during the course of the war.

    By the time Chanel died in January 1971, aged 87, she was a true French icon whose designs were coveted around the world.

    Jackie Kennedy was wearing one of her pink suits on the day JFK was assassinated in Dallas in 1963.

    Chanel was one Nazi agent who really did get away with it, and even her dark past had been airbrushed out of history – until now.

    Posted by Vanfield | December 4, 2014, 10:35 am

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