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FTR #1013 Fascism and the Politics of Immigration

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash dri­ve that can be obtained HERE [1]. The new dri­ve is a 32-giga­byte dri­ve that is cur­rent as of the pro­grams and arti­cles post­ed by the fall of 2017. The new dri­ve (avail­able for a tax-deductible con­tri­bu­tion of $65.00 or more.)

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This broad­cast was record­ed in one, 60-minute seg­ment [5].

[6]

Waf­fen SS: The GOP’s idea of ide­al immi­grants.

Intro­duc­tion: In The Hitler Lega­cy [7]Peter Lev­en­da not­ed anti-immi­grant sen­ti­ment and xeno­pho­bia as part of “The Hitler Lega­cy.”

Fear of “the oth­er” has been a sta­ple of fas­cist thought and is dom­i­nat­ing much of the polit­i­cal dis­course on both sides of the Atlantic.

In FTR #838 [8], Lev­en­da dis­coursed on how immi­gra­tion from Europe, both Catholic  and Jew­ish,  meld­ed with oth­er events in the post-World War I peri­od to mobi­lize fas­cist sen­ti­ment and activism.

React­ing to the advent of the Sovi­et Union, abortive Marx­ist rev­o­lu­tions in Ger­many and else­where in Europe, large scale immi­gra­tion of Catholics from Ire­land and Italy and Jews from East­ern Europe, pow­er­ful ele­ments of the U.S. pow­er elite embraced fas­cism and eugen­ics ide­ol­o­gy.

With the onset of the Great Depres­sion, the poten­tial threat of Com­mu­nism was mag­ni­fied in the eyes of many pow­er­ful Amer­i­can indus­tri­al­ists, financiers and cor­po­rate lawyers. Ger­many’s suc­cess in putting down the Marx­ist rev­o­lu­tions with­in its own bor­ders, as well as the busi­ness rela­tion­ships between cor­po­rate Ger­many and its car­tel part­ners in the U.S. busi­ness com­mu­ni­ty inclined many influ­en­tial Amer­i­can reac­tionar­ies [9] to sup­port fas­cism.

By the same token, these same ele­ments came to despise Franklin Delano Roo­sevelt and his “Jew Deal,” as it was called by his ene­mies. Amer­i­can Jews were seen as hir­ing Jew­ish immi­grants and thus deny­ing “real Amer­i­cans” jobs and eco­nom­ic well-being.

Attack­ing Roo­sevelt as a Jew and a Com­mu­nist, Amer­i­can fas­cists embraced a cog­ni­tive and rhetor­i­cal posi­tion not unlike the view of Barack Oba­ma as a “Kenyan Mus­lim,” and, con­se­quent­ly, a “trai­tor.”

Some key points in Peter’s analy­sis are explored a sec­tion of the book titled the “Ori­gins of 21st Cen­tu­ry Con­flict.” High­lights of this part of the pro­gram include:

In FTR #864 [10], record­ed in Sep­tem­ber of 2015, Peter updat­ed the con­text of our dis­cus­sion from March of that year in the con­text of Don­ald Trump’s lead in the GOP pri­ma­ry strug­gle and the reac­tion sweep­ing Europe.

Immi­gra­tion dom­i­nat­ed the news that fall and has con­tin­ued to do so. The flood of refugees from the wars in the Mid­dle East threat­ened to over­whelm Euro­pean infra­struc­ture and the phe­nom­e­non dom­i­nat­ed the polit­i­cal debate in the GOP pri­ma­ry elec­tion cam­paign. Don­ald Trump cap­i­tal­ized on anti-immi­grant xeno­pho­bia dur­ing the pri­ma­ry and then the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign.

Of course, he con­tin­ues to do so today.

In The Hitler Lega­cy [7]Peter not­ed anti-immi­grant sen­ti­ment and xeno­pho­bia as part of “The Hitler Lega­cy.”

Fear of “the oth­er” has been a sta­ple of fas­cist thought and has dom­i­nat­ed much of the polit­i­cal dis­course on both sides of the Atlantic.

“. . . Xeno­pho­bia is at an all-time high in Europe and increas­ing­ly in Amer­i­ca. The Inter­net has pro­vid­ed new and improved means of com­mu­ni­ca­tion. . . .

As the polit­i­cal life of every coun­try becomes more and more polar­ized between “right” and “left,” the men of ODESSA can only laugh at our dis­com­fort. . . .”

Next, we turn to a more recent devel­op­ment.

[11]Mela­nia Trump gar­nered con­sid­er­able media atten­tion when she vis­it­ed a deten­tion cen­ter for immi­grants, includ­ing chil­dren, wear­ing a jack­et that said “I Real­ly Don’t Care. Do U?”

Taste­less on its sur­face, the state­ment assumes added sig­nif­i­cance when we fac­tor in the fact that  “I don’t care” (“Me Ne Frego” in Ital­ian) was an impor­tant fas­cist slo­gan [12].

Fur­ther­more, the Zara com­pa­ny that made Mela­ni­a’s jack­et has a his­to­ry of mar­ket­ing gar­ments with fascist/racist over­tones. [13] It mar­ket­ed [14] a shirt that mim­ic­ked a con­cen­tra­tion camp inmate’s garb and a swasti­ka-enlaid hand­bag. It also mar­ket­ed a Pepe The Frog skirt [15].

Recent com­ments by Trump dis­parag­ing Haiti as a “shit­hole” coun­try and pin­ing for immi­gra­tion from Nor­way instead war­rant a fresh look at the Cru­sade For Free­dom.

Dur­ing Trump’s brief tenure as Pres­i­dent, the media have con­sis­tent­ly lament­ed his actions as idio­syn­crasies. Trump’s poli­cies are not his alone, but fol­low in a lin­ear path, along which the GOP has trav­eled for decades.

In this post, we review the Cru­sade For Freedom–the covert oper­a­tion that brought Third Reich alum­ni into the coun­try and also sup­port­ed their guer­ril­la war­fare in East­ern Europe, con­duct­ed up until the ear­ly 1950’s. Con­ceived by Allen Dulles, over­seen by Richard Nixon, pub­licly rep­re­sent­ed by Ronald Rea­gan and real­ized in con­sid­er­able mea­sure by William Casey, the CFF ulti­mate­ly evolved [16] into a Nazi [17] wing of the GOP [18].

“. . . . Vice Pres­i­dent Nixon’s secret polit­i­cal war of Nazis against Jews in Amer­i­can pol­i­tics was nev­er inves­ti­gat­ed at the time. The for­eign lan­guage-speak­ing Croa­t­ians and oth­er Fas­cist émi­gré groups had a ready-made net­work for con­tact­ing and mobi­liz­ing the East­ern Euro­pean eth­nic bloc. There is a very high cor­re­la­tion between CIA domes­tic sub­si­dies to Fas­cist ‘free­dom fight­ers’ dur­ing the 1950’s and the lead­er­ship of the Repub­li­can Party’s eth­nic cam­paign groups. The motive for the under-the-table financ­ing was clear: Nixon used Nazis to off­set the Jew­ish vote for the Democ­rats. . . .

. . . . In 1952, Nixon had formed an Eth­nic Divi­sion with­in the Repub­li­can Nation­al Com­mit­tee. Dis­placed fas­cists, hop­ing to be returned to pow­er by an Eisen­how­er-Nixon ‘lib­er­a­tion’ pol­i­cy signed on with the com­mit­tee. In 1953, when Repub­li­cans were in office, the immi­gra­tion laws were changed to admit Nazis, even mem­bers of the SS. They flood­ed into the coun­try. Nixon him­self over­saw the new immi­gra­tion pro­gram. . . .”

1. In FTR #838 [8], Peter Lev­en­da dis­coursed on how immi­gra­tion from Europe, both Catholic  and Jew­ish,  meld­ed with oth­er events in the post-World War I peri­od to mobi­lize fas­cist sen­ti­ment and activism.

React­ing to the advent of the Sovi­et Union, abortive Marx­ist rev­o­lu­tions in Ger­many and else­where in Europe, large scale immi­gra­tion of Catholics from Ire­land and Italy and Jews from East­ern Europe, pow­er­ful ele­ments of the U.S. pow­er elite embraced fas­cism and eugen­ics ide­ol­o­gy.

With the onset of the Great Depres­sion, the poten­tial threat of Com­mu­nism was mag­ni­fied in the eyes of many pow­er­ful Amer­i­can indus­tri­al­ists, financiers and cor­po­rate lawyers. Ger­many’s suc­cess in putting down the Marx­ist rev­o­lu­tions with­in its own bor­ders, as well as the busi­ness rela­tion­ships between cor­po­rate Ger­many and its car­tel part­ners in the U.S. busi­ness com­mu­ni­ty inclined many influ­en­tial Amer­i­can reac­tionar­ies [9] to sup­port fas­cism.

[19]By the same token, these same ele­ments came to despise Franklin Delano Roo­sevelt and his “Jew Deal,” as it was called by his ene­mies. Amer­i­can Jews were seen as hir­ing Jew­ish immi­grants and thus deny­ing “real Amer­i­cans” jobs and eco­nom­ic well-being.

Attack­ing Roo­sevelt as a Jew and a Com­mu­nist, Amer­i­can fas­cists embraced a cog­ni­tive and rhetor­i­cal posi­tion not unlike the view of Barack Oba­ma as a “Kenyan Mus­lim,” and, con­se­quent­ly, a “trai­tor.”

Some key points in Peter’s analy­sis are explored a sec­tion of the book titled the “Ori­gins of 21st Cen­tu­ry Con­flict.” High­lights of this part of the pro­gram include:

2. In FTR #864 [10], record­ed in Sep­tem­ber of 2015, Peter updat­ed the con­text of our dis­cus­sion from March of that year in the con­text of Don­ald Trump’s lead in the GOP pri­ma­ry strug­gle and the reac­tion sweep­ing Europe.

Immi­gra­tion dom­i­nat­ed the news that fall and has con­tin­ued to do so. The flood of refugees from the wars in the Mid­dle East threat­ened to over­whelm Euro­pean infra­struc­ture and the phe­nom­e­non dom­i­nat­ed the polit­i­cal debate in the GOP pri­ma­ry elec­tion cam­paign. Don­ald Trump cap­i­tal­ized on anti-immi­grant xeno­pho­bia dur­ing the pri­ma­ry and then the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign.

Of course, he con­tin­ues to do so today.

In The Hitler Lega­cy [7]Peter not­ed anti-immi­grant sen­ti­ment and xeno­pho­bia as part of “The Hitler Lega­cy.”

Fear of “the oth­er” has been a sta­ple of fas­cist thought and has dom­i­nat­ed much of the polit­i­cal dis­course on both sides of the Atlantic.

The Hitler Lega­cy by Peter Lev­en­da; IBIS Press [HC]; Copy­right 2014 by Peter Lev­en­da; ISBN 978–0‑89254–210‑9; p. 315. [7]

. . . Xeno­pho­bia is at an all-time high in Europe and increas­ing­ly in Amer­i­ca. The Inter­net has pro­vid­ed new and improved means of com­mu­ni­ca­tion. . . .

As the polit­i­cal life of every coun­try becomes more and more polar­ized between “right” and “left,” the men of ODESSA can only laugh at our dis­com­fort. . . .

3. Mela­nia Trump gar­nered con­sid­er­able media atten­tion when she vis­it­ed a deten­tion cen­ter for immi­grants, includ­ing chil­dren, wear­ing a jack­et that said “I Real­ly Don’t Care. Do U?”

Taste­less on its sur­face, the state­ment assumes added sig­nif­i­cance when we fac­tor in the fact that  “I don’t care” (“Me Ne Frego” in Ital­ian) was an impor­tant fas­cist slo­gan [12].

Fur­ther­more, the Zara com­pa­ny that made Mela­ni­a’s jack­et has a his­to­ry of mar­ket­ing gar­ments with fascist/racist over­tones. [13] It mar­ket­ed [14] a shirt that mim­ic­ked a con­cen­tra­tion camp inmate’s garb and a swasti­ka-enlaid hand­bag. It also mar­ket­ed a Pepe The Frog skirt [15].

“A Brief (Fas­cist) His­to­ry of ‘I Don’t Care’” by Gio­van­ni Tiso; Over­land; 06/22/2018 [12]

This arti­cle was sparked by the jack­et that Mela­nia Trump wore as she trav­elled to a deten­tion camp for migrant chil­dren, but my intent isn’t to argue that she or her staff chose that jack­et in order to send a cod­ed mes­sage to the president’s far-right fol­low­ers. It is, rather, to high­light some of the his­tor­i­cal echoes of that phrase – ‘I don’t care’.

The echoes of which some­one ought to have been aware, espe­cial­ly in an admin­is­tra­tion that includes – to put it mild­ly – sev­er­al far-right sym­pa­thiz­ers. And also to show that the atti­tude, the the­atri­cal ‘not car­ing’, was an explic­it char­ac­ter trait of Fas­cism. . . . 

. . . . Fas­cism lay its roots in the cam­paign for Italy’s late entry in the First World War, of which Mus­soli­ni was one of the lead­ers. It was at this time that the phrase ‘me ne frego’ – which at the time was still con­sid­ered quite vul­gar, along the lines of the Eng­lish ‘I don’t give a fu ck’ – was sung by mem­bers of the spe­cial force known as ardi­ti (lit­er­al­ly: ‘the dar­ing ones’) who vol­un­teered for the front, to sig­ni­fy that they didn’t care if they should lose their lives.

The ardi­ti were dis­band­ed after the war, but many of them vol­un­teered in 1919 for an expe­di­tion led by the poet Gabriele D’Annunzio to cap­ture the city of Fiume (Rije­ka, in present-day Croa­t­ia) and claim it for Italy dur­ing the vac­u­um cre­at­ed by the dis­so­lu­tion of the Aus­tro-Hun­gar­i­an empire. At the time of this occu­pa­tion, for­mer ardi­ti also formed the back­bone of the orig­i­nal Black Squads dur­ing the ter­ror cam­paigns that began in 1919 and cul­mi­nat­ed with the ‘March on Rome’ of 1922, which com­plet­ed Fascism’s swift rise to pow­er.

This lapel pin worn by an orig­i­nal mem­ber of the Black Shirts was recent­ly sold on a web­site devot­ed to mil­i­tary mem­o­ra­bil­ia. It is embla­zoned with the words ‘Me ne frego’ under­neath the orig­i­nal sym­bol of the ardi­ti and the acronym FERT (which stands for the mot­to of the Roy­al Fam­i­ly). The sell­er calls it ‘bel­lis­si­mo’.
[see image of “me ne frego” pin worn by the Black Shirts [20]]

‘Me ne frego’ was the title of one of the most famous songs of the Fas­cist era.Its orig­i­nal ver­sion [21], dat­ing around 1920, hails D’Annunzio and Mus­soli­ni as the fathers of the fas­cist move­ment, recy­cling the old war song of the ardi­ti as the third stan­za.

Me ne frego I don’t care

me ne frego I don’t care

me ne frego è il nos­tro mot­to, I don’t care is our mot­to

me ne frego di morire I don’t care if I should die

per la san­ta lib­ertà! … For our sacred free­dom! …

Lat­er ver­sions removed men­tions of D’Annunzio, who fad­ed fair­ly quick­ly into the back­ground. In the mean­time, Mus­soli­ni made the slo­gan his own, and explic­it­ly ele­vat­ed it to the phi­los­o­phy of the regime.
[See image of Ben­i­to Mus­soli­ni “me ne frego” quote [22]]

[23]The mean­ing of ‘Me ne frego’

The proud Black-Shirt mot­to ‘I don’t care’ writ­ten on the ban­dages that cov­er a wound isn’t just an act of sto­ic phi­los­o­phy or the sum­ma­ry of a polit­i­cal doc­trine. It’s an edu­ca­tion to fight­ing, and the accep­tance of the risks it implies. It’s a new Ital­ian lifestyle. This is how the Fas­cist wel­comes and loves life, while reject­ing and regard­ing sui­cide as an act of cow­ardice; this is how the Fas­cist under­stands life as duty, exal­ta­tion, con­quest. A life that must be lived high­ly and ful­ly, both for one­self but espe­cial­ly for oth­ers, near and far, present and future.

The con­no­ta­tions of altru­ism at the end of the quote are in direct con­trast with the mean­ing tak­en on by the word mene­freghis­mo(lit­er­al­ly, ‘Idont­careism’), which ever since the regime has meant in com­mon par­lance a kind of detached self-reliance, or moral autoc­ra­cy. Just as Italy broke with its for­mer allies and chart­ed a stub­born path towards the ruin and dev­as­ta­tion of the Sec­ond World War, so too the Fas­cist cit­i­zen was encour­aged to reject the judge­ment of oth­ers and look straight aheadIt should be remem­bered in this regard that the regime treat­ed igno­rance and pro­cliv­i­ty to vio­lence as desir­able qual­i­ties to be reward­ed with posi­tions of influ­ence and pow­er. This required a swift redraw­ing of the old social norms, and of the lan­guage used to sig­ni­fy the moral worth of indi­vid­u­als. ‘Me ne frego’ was the per­fect slo­gan for the peo­ple in charge of over­see­ing such a pro­gram.

Four years ago, speak­ing at a First World War com­mem­o­ra­tion in the small town of Redipuglia, Pope Fran­cis linked ‘me ne frego’ not only with the car­nage of that con­flict, but also with the hor­rors of Fas­cism, recog­nis­ing its ide­o­log­i­cal and pro­pa­gan­da val­ue for Mussolini’s project. This is the form in which the slo­gan has sur­vived until the present day, as a lin­guis­tic sig­ni­fi­er not of gener­ic indif­fer­ence, but of ide­o­log­i­cal nos­tal­gia. And because the attempts in Italy and beyond to stem the spread of such sig­ni­fiers have been com­pre­hen­sive­ly aban­doned, we read­i­ly find those words appear­ing not just on seem­ing­ly ubiq­ui­tous Fas­cist-era mem­o­ra­bil­ia but also on posters,
[see image of poster [24]]
t‑shirts,
[see image of t‑shirt [25]]
or this line of stick­ers that can be pur­chased for $.193 from Red­bub­ble (mot­to ‘awe­some prod­ucts designed by inde­pen­dent artists’), where it was uploaded by user ‘fash­di­vi­sion’.
[see image of stick­ers [26]]
The inter­na­tion­al neo­fas­cist move­ment is of course well aware of this lin­eage. By way of exam­ple, if you search for it online you’ll find a long-run­ning Eng­lish-lan­guage pod­cast called Me ne frego which recy­cles this imagery in sup­port of argu­ments against immi­gra­tion and mul­ti­cul­tur­al­ism, or to opine on the sub­ject of ‘the Jew­ish ques­tion’.
 I don’t doubt that peo­ple close both to the Trump admin­is­tra­tion and this world are sim­i­lar­ly cog­nisant of the uses to which those three words have been put. But even for those who aren’t, claims to indif­fer­ence have a his­to­ry which we mustn’t allow our­selves to for­get.

4.  The Zara com­pa­ny that made Mela­ni­a’s jack­et has a his­to­ry of mar­ket­ing gar­ments with fascist/racist over­tones. [13] It mar­ket­ed [14] a shirt that mim­ic­ked a con­cen­tra­tion camp inmate’s garb and a swasti­ka-enlaid hand­bag.

“Zara Removes Striped Pyja­mas with Yel­low Star Fol­low­ing Online Out­rage” by Ele­na Cresci; The Guardian; 08/27/2014 [14]

High street retail­er Zara has pulled a striped shirt fea­tur­ing a yel­low star on the front on Wednes­day after social media users likened it to the uni­form worn by Jew­ish pris­on­ers in con­cen­tra­tion camps dur­ing the sec­ond world war.

The striped “sher­iff” T‑shirt, aimed at chil­dren aged three months to three years, drew crit­i­cism for a design which fea­tured white and blue stripes and a six-point­ed yel­low star on the front. The star itself had the word “sher­iff” writ­ten across it, which was not com­plete­ly clear in the zoomed-out images on the Span­ish chain’s web­site.

But from first glance, many peo­ple felt the shirt bore too close a resem­blance to the striped uni­form and yel­low star Jew­ish pris­on­ers were forced to wear dur­ing the Holo­caust.

The shirt was avail­able via Zara’s UK home­page as well as in a num­ber of its inter­na­tion­al out­lets, includ­ing Israel, France, Den­mark, Alba­nia and Swe­den. Israeli jour­nal­ist Dimi Rei­der was among the first to notice the resem­blance.

Writ­ing on 972mag.com [27], he said: “It’s a SHERIFF shirt for your three-year-old. Obvi­ous­ly. What else could it be?

“Why, what else does it remind you of?”

The retail­er has since apol­o­gised, in sev­er­al lan­guages on its Twit­ter feed [28], and con­firmed the shirt is no longer on sale.

A spokesper­son for Zara’s par­ent com­pa­ny Indi­tex said: “The item in ques­tion has now been removed from all Zara stores and Zara.com [29].

“The gar­ment was inspired by the clas­sic West­ern films, but we now recog­nise that the design could be seen as insen­si­tive and apol­o­gise sin­cere­ly for any offence caused to our cus­tomers.”

This is not the first time Zara has made an unfor­tu­nate design choice. In 2007, the retail­er with­drew a hand­bag from its sto­ries after one cus­tomer point­ed out the design fea­tured swastikas. [30]

5.  Zara’s fas­cist fash­ion sense just keeps bub­bling up. It turns out Zara made a skirt in 2017 with what appear to be ‘Pepe the Frog’ faces [15]

“Zara Los­es Its Skirt Over Pepe the Frog” by Vanes­sa Fried­man; The New York Times; 04/19/2017 [15]

Dig­i­tal activists have claimed anoth­er head. Or, rather, skirt.

On Tues­day, Zara, the Span­ish chain owned by Indi­tex that has more than 2,100 stores in 88 coun­tries around the world and was rat­ed No. 53 on the Forbes 2016 list [31] of the world’s most valu­able brands, qui­et­ly with­drew a dis­tressed den­im miniskirt print­ed with a car­toon face from its web­sites and stores in the Unit­ed States and Britain after it became a sub­ject of social media con­tro­ver­sy for the graphic’s resem­blance to Pepe the Frog.

You know, the green amphib­ian that was orig­i­nal­ly intend­ed [32] as a “peace­ful frog-dude,” accord­ing to Matt Furie, the man who cre­at­ed him, but that was co-opt­ed by anti-Jew­ish and big­ot­ed groups and des­ig­nat­ed an alt-right hate sym­bol [33] by the Anti-Defama­tion League last Sep­tem­ber.

The skirt had been on sale as part of Zara’s lim­it­ed-edi­tion “oil on den­im” offer­ing of spring-fling artist part­ner­ships.

Twit­ter got on it pret­ty fast. “Zara is real­ly out there try­ing to sell a P*pe the frog skirt, appar­ent­ly unaware (?) of its cur­rent impli­ca­tions,” @meaganrosae [34] wrote. Added @ccarella [35], “Hmm Pepe on a Zara skirt.”

There is a lot of “how did this hap­pen?” and “how delud­ed could they be?” going around the cyber­sphere, but the answer may come down to a blunt col­li­sion of glob­al­ism and cul­tur­al igno­rance.

A spokes­woman for Zara said: “The skirt is part of the lim­it­ed Oil-on-Den­im col­lec­tion, which was cre­at­ed through col­lab­o­ra­tions with artists and is only avail­able in select­ed mar­kets. The design­er of the skirt is Mario de San­ti­a­go, known online as Yimeis­great [36]. There is absolute­ly no link to the sug­gest­ed theme.”

Mr. de San­ti­a­go is a Span­ish artist based in Lon­don whose biog­ra­phy on his offi­cial web page states, “I like to explore social inter­ac­tions and gath­er them into quirky and colour­ful sto­ry­telling com­po­si­tions.” Accord­ing to Zara, he said the frog face “came from a wall paint­ing I drew with friends four years ago.” It is not hard to imag­ine he was unaware a sim­i­lar frog face had been used for a some­what dif­fer­ent pur­pose in the Unit­ed States.

Unfor­tu­nate­ly for Zara, how­ev­er, the brand has a his­to­ry with pub­lic pres­sure over a prod­uct with poten­tial­ly offen­sive impli­ca­tions — espe­cial­ly anti-Semit­ic impli­ca­tions — which may have exac­er­bat­ed the reac­tion. In 2014, it apol­o­gized for offer­ing, and then with­drew, a set of children’s striped paja­mas [37] with a yel­low star on the breast that was wide­ly seen as resem­bling a con­cen­tra­tion camp uni­form (the star was sup­posed to be a sheriff’s badge). In 2007, it with­drew a hand­bag [38] print­ed with folk­loric designs, one of which hap­pened to look a lot like a swasti­ka.

All of this may add up to some­thing of a teach­able moment for the fast-fash­ion mod­el. Because the busi­ness is based on the con­stant turnover of new prod­ucts that are effec­tive­ly “test­ed” on the shop floor, so that com­pa­nies can respond quick­ly to what sells and drop less pop­u­lar items with­out much cost, it involves a high­er than usu­al amount of churn. This may mean designs are sub­ject to less strin­gent vet­ting than they might be in, say, a tra­di­tion­al fash­ion brand in which prod­ucts are cre­at­ed and assessed more than six months ahead of pro­duc­tion.

Add to that the recent com­mer­cial­iza­tion [39] of the sum­mer fes­ti­val cir­cuit, in which cor­po­rate giants are lever­ag­ing the fash­ion appeal of sar­to­r­i­al rebel­lion (always a dan­ger­ous game, since it co-opts sym­bols with­out real­ly under­stand­ing their use), and the pit­falls were poten­tial­ly pret­ty big. Just think for a minute of the absur­di­ty implic­it in choos­ing a hate sym­bol to stick on a gar­ment seem­ing­ly meant for a sum­mer-of-love/­danc­ing-in-the-mud­dy-fields-type event. Oops.

Giv­en the increas­ing role of the inter­net in polic­ing brands [40] and com­pa­nies, it was prob­a­bly only a mat­ter of time before a com­pa­ny attempt­ing to make hay while the music played made a mis­take instead.

Con­sid­er it a cau­tion­ary tale.

[41]6. Although we have dis­cussed it fre­quent­ly over the decades, recent com­ments by Trump dis­parag­ing Haiti as a “shit­hole” coun­try and pin­ing for immi­gra­tion from Nor­way instead war­rant a fresh look at the Cru­sade For Free­dom.

Dur­ing Trump’s brief tenure as Pres­i­dent, the media have con­sis­tent­ly lament­ed his actions as idio­syn­crasies. Trump’s poli­cies are not his alone, but fol­low in a lin­ear path, along which the GOP has trav­eled for decades.

In this post, we review the Cru­sade For Freedom–the covert oper­a­tion that brought Third Reich alum­ni into the coun­try and also sup­port­ed their guer­ril­la war­fare in East­ern Europe, con­duct­ed up until the ear­ly 1950’s. Con­ceived by Allen Dulles, over­seen by Richard Nixon, pub­licly rep­re­sent­ed by Ronald Rea­gan and real­ized in con­sid­er­able mea­sure by William Casey, the CFF ulti­mate­ly evolved [16] into a Nazi [17] wing of the GOP [18].

“. . . . Vice Pres­i­dent Nixon’s secret polit­i­cal war of Nazis against Jews in Amer­i­can pol­i­tics was nev­er inves­ti­gat­ed at the time. The for­eign lan­guage-speak­ing Croa­t­ians and oth­er Fas­cist émi­gré groups had a ready-made net­work for con­tact­ing and mobi­liz­ing the East­ern Euro­pean eth­nic bloc. There is a very high cor­re­la­tion between CIA domes­tic sub­si­dies to Fas­cist ‘free­dom fight­ers’ dur­ing the 1950’s and the lead­er­ship of the Repub­li­can Party’s eth­nic cam­paign groups. The motive for the under-the-table financ­ing was clear: Nixon used Nazis to off­set the Jew­ish vote for the Democ­rats. . . .

The elder George Bush installed the GOP eth­nic out­reach orga­ni­za­tion as a per­ma­nent part of the GOP:

“. . . . . . . . . It was Bush who ful­filled Nixon’s promise to make the ‘eth­nic emi­gres’ a per­ma­nent part of Repub­li­can pol­i­tics. In 1972, Nixon’s State Depart­ment spokesman con­firmed to his Aus­tralian coun­ter­part that the eth­nic groups were very use­ful to get out the vote in sev­er­al key states. Bush’s tenure as head of the Repub­li­can Nation­al Com­mit­tee exact­ly coin­cid­ed with Las­z­lo Pasztor’s 1972 dri­ve to trans­form the Her­itage Groups Coun­cil into the party’s offi­cial eth­nic arm. The groups Pasz­tor chose as Bush’s cam­paign allies were the émi­gré Fas­cists whom Dulles had brought to the Unit­ed States. . . . ”

6a.    The Secret War Against the Jews by John Lof­tus and Mark Aarons; Copy­right 1994 by Mark Aarons; St. Martin’s Press; [HC] ISBN 0–312-11057‑X; pp. 122–123. [42]

. . . . Frus­tra­tion over Truman’s 1948 elec­tion vic­to­ry over Dewey (which they blamed on the “Jew­ish vote”) impelled Dulles and his pro­tégé Richard Nixon to work toward the real­iza­tion of the fas­cist free­dom fight­er pres­ence in the Repub­li­can Party’s eth­nic out­reach orga­ni­za­tion. As a young con­gress­man, Nixon had been Allen Dulles’s con­fi­dant. They both blamed Gov­er­nor Dewey’s razor-thin loss to Tru­man in the 1948 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion on the Jew­ish vote. When he became Eisenhower’s vice pres­i­dent in 1952, Nixon was deter­mined to build his own eth­nic base. . . .

. . . . Vice Pres­i­dent Nixon’s secret polit­i­cal war of Nazis against Jews in Amer­i­can pol­i­tics was nev­er inves­ti­gat­ed at the time. The for­eign lan­guage-speak­ing Croa­t­ians and oth­er Fas­cist émi­gré groups had a ready-made net­work for con­tact­ing and mobi­liz­ing the East­ern Euro­pean eth­nic bloc. There is a very high cor­re­la­tion between CIA domes­tic sub­si­dies to Fas­cist ‘free­dom fight­ers’ dur­ing the 1950’s and the lead­er­ship of the Repub­li­can Party’s eth­nic cam­paign groups. The motive for the under-the-table financ­ing was clear: Nixon used Nazis to off­set the Jew­ish vote for the Democ­rats. . . .

. . . . In 1952, Nixon had formed an Eth­nic Divi­sion with­in the Repub­li­can Nation­al Com­mit­tee. Dis­placed fas­cists, hop­ing to be returned to pow­er by an Eisen­how­er-Nixon ‘lib­er­a­tion’ pol­i­cy signed on with the com­mit­tee. In 1953, when Repub­li­cans were in office, the immi­gra­tion laws were changed to admit Nazis, even mem­bers of the SS. They flood­ed into the coun­try. Nixon him­self over­saw the new immi­gra­tion pro­gram. AsVice Pres­i­dent, he even received East­ern Euro­pean Fas­cists in the White House. . . .

6b. More about the com­po­si­tion of the cast of the CFF: Note that the ascen­sion of the Rea­gan admin­is­tra­tion was essen­tial­ly the ascen­sion of the Naz­i­fied GOP, embod­ied in the CFF milieu. Rea­gan (spokesman for CFF) was Pres­i­dent; George H.W. Bush (for whom CIA head­quar­ters is named) was the Vice Pres­i­dent; William Casey (who han­dled the State Depart­ment machi­na­tions to bring these peo­ple into the Unit­ed States) was Rea­gan’s cam­paign man­ag­er and lat­er his CIA direc­tor.

The Secret War Against the Jews by John Lof­tus and Mark Aarons; Copy­right 1994 by Mark Aarons; St. Martin’s Press; [HC] ISBN 0–312-11057‑X; p. 605. [42]

. . . . As a young movie actor in the ear­ly 1950s, Rea­gan was employed as the pub­lic spokesper­son for an OPC front named the ‘Cru­sade for Free­dom.’ Rea­gan may not have known it, but 99 per­cent for the Crusade’s funds came from clan­des­tine accounts, which were then laun­dered through the Cru­sade to var­i­ous orga­ni­za­tions such as Radio Lib­er­ty, which employed Dulles’s Fas­cists. Bill Casey, who lat­er became CIA direc­tor under Ronald Rea­gan, also worked in Ger­many after World War II on Dulles’ Nazi ‘free­dom fight­ers’ pro­gram. When he returned to New York, Casey head­ed up anoth­er OPC front, the Inter­na­tion­al Res­cue Com­mit­tee, which spon­sored the immi­gra­tion of these Fas­cists to the Unit­ed States. Casey’s com­mit­tee replaced the Inter­na­tion­al Red Cross as the spon­sor for Dulles’s recruits. Con­fi­den­tial inter­views, for­mer mem­bers, OPC; for­mer mem­bers, British for­eign and Com­mon­wealth Office. . . .

6c. While serv­ing as chair­man of the Repub­li­can Nation­al Com­mit­tee, the elder George Bush shep­herd­ed the Nazi émi­gré com­mu­ni­ty into posi­tion as a per­ma­nent branch of the Repub­li­can Par­ty.

The Secret War Against the Jews by John Lof­tus and Mark Aarons; Copy­right 1994 by Mark Aarons; St. Martin’s Press; [HC] ISBN 0–312-11057‑X; pp. 369–370. [42]

 . . . . . It was Bush who ful­filled Nixon’s promise to make the ‘eth­nic emi­gres’ a per­ma­nent part of Repub­li­can pol­i­tics. In 1972, Nixon’s State Depart­ment spokesman con­firmed to his Aus­tralian coun­ter­part that the eth­nic groups were very use­ful to get out the vote in sev­er­al key states. Bush’s tenure as head of the Repub­li­can Nation­al Com­mit­tee exact­ly coin­cid­ed with Las­z­lo Pasztor’s 1972 dri­ve to trans­form the Her­itage Groups Coun­cil into the party’s offi­cial eth­nic arm. The groups Pasz­tor chose as Bush’s cam­paign allies were the émi­gré Fas­cists whom Dulles had brought to the Unit­ed States. . . .