Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #673 Nancy Pelosi: Bormann Democrat?

MP3: 30-Minute Seg­ment
REALAUDIO NB: This RealAu­dio stream con­tains FTRs 673 and 674 in sequence. Each is a 30 minute seg­ment.

In this pro­gram we explore the actions and polit­i­cal her­itage of House speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi, viewed against the back­ground of the ide­ol­o­gy and career of SS man Otto Von Bolschwing. Von Bolschwing’s pro­tege Helene Von Damm select­ed the per­son­nel who have staffed the GOP over the years. The junior play­ers in the Rea­gan admin­is­tra­tions became some of the senior figures–the so-called neo-cons–in the Bush II years. The program—interrogatory in nature—asks if Pelosi might be an accom­plice of the Under­ground Reich, a “Bor­mann Demo­c­rat.” This is not to say that Ms. Pelosi does­n’t have a good over­all vot­ing record, but finan­cial ties often tran­scend par­ty alle­giance. (The ref­er­ence is, as vet­er­an lis­ten­ers know, to the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work, the deci­sive­ly pow­er­ful eco­nom­ic com­po­nent of a Third Reich gone under­ground, exposed by the late, hero­ic Paul Man­ning.)

Begin­ning with Pelosi’s state­ment about hav­ing been mis­lead by the CIA about tor­ture, the pro­gram notes that Pelosi has been, in effect, some­thing of an Achilles Heel for the Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion. Pelosi has served as a light­ning rod to Repub­li­can attacks on Oba­ma’s stim­u­lus pro­pos­al, with regard to delays in, and water­ing down of, the pack­age. In addi­tion, Pelosi has indi­cat­ed oppo­si­tion to addi­tion­al bud­getary out­lays to prop up the econ­o­my, despite many lead­ing econ­o­mists’ views that con­sid­er­ably more mon­ey must be allo­cat­ed, in order to avoid cat­a­stro­phe. Although these devel­op­ments may be hap­pen­stance, Pelosi’s back­ground and polit­i­cal her­itage sug­gest a pos­si­ble sin­is­ter expla­na­tion.

The broad­cast fea­tures dis­cus­sion of links between the Von Bolschwing/Getty fam­i­ly milieu and promi­nent Bay Area Democ­rats, includ­ing San Fran­cis­co may­or Gavin New­som and House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi. Von Bolschwing con­spired with Axis sym­pa­thiz­ers to ship oil to Nazi Ger­many. One of Von Bolschwing’s allies in that scheme was Nazi sym­pa­thiz­er and per­son­al friend of Hitler J. Paul Get­ty, whose fam­i­ly remained close to Von Bolschwing dur­ing his post­war, Amer­i­can career, along with inti­mate Get­ty friend and legal advis­er Jus­tice William New­som. Both Jus­tice New­som (Gav­in’s father) and mem­bers of the Get­ty fam­i­ly were involved with von Bolschwing’s TCI firm.

Pelosi’s sis­ter-in-law, Belin­da Bar­bara New­som, was Jus­tice New­som’s sis­ter and Gav­in’s aunt. Nan­cy Pelosi’s hus­band, Paul, became a bil­lion­aire in the gam­ing machine indus­try. Again, this pro­gram asks whether the tie-ins between Pelosi and the milieu of Under­ground Reich lynch­pin von Bolschwing might have some­thing to do with her weak­en­ing of the Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion.

Pro­gram High­lights Include: A read­ing of the orig­i­nal San Jose Mer­cury News arti­cle about von Bolschwing, includ­ing his busi­ness ties; review of the Nazi ele­ment in the GOP–the Repub­li­can Eth­nic Her­itage wing; review of von Bolschwing’s links to the Gehlen spy orga­ni­a­tion.

1. Begin­ning with House Speak­er Pelosi’s recent pro­nounce­ments about the CIA hav­ing mis­lead her about water­board­ing, the pro­gram notes that flak from that con­tro­ver­sy may enmesh Pres­i­dent Oba­ma.

“The furor over House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi’s accu­sa­tions against the Cen­tral Intel­li­gence Agency serves a pur­pose beyond find­ing out how the Unit­ed States came to embrace tor­ture. The San Fran­cis­co Demo­c­rat, deeply par­ti­san and often ridiculed, offers Repub­li­cans their best shot yet at block­ing a pop­u­lar pres­i­dent whose poll num­bers have so far defied grav­i­ty.

The uproar comes just as Pres­i­dent Oba­ma is head­ing into a trans­for­ma­tive fight over health care, with Pelosi as his chief lieu­tenant. It also finds Oba­ma sud­den­ly play­ing defense on ter­ror issues, revers­ing him­self on releas­ing detainee pho­tos and on end­ing mil­i­tary com­mis­sions, even as his CIA direc­tor, Leon Panet­ta, sought to calm enraged employ­ees. Iron­i­cal­ly, the con­tro­ver­sy has come down to a cred­i­bil­i­ty test pit­ting Pelosi, whose modus operan­di has nev­er been known to include lying, against the Cen­tral Intel­li­gence Agency, an insti­tu­tion deeply dam­aged by the use of flawed intel­li­gence to invade Iraq and now on the defen­sive for its use of torture.Panetta is con­sid­ered a wise man of Cal­i­for­nia and nation­al pol­i­tics who worked for years with Pelosi as a con­gress­man from Mon­terey. On Fri­day, he reit­er­at­ed his state­ment that agency records show CIA offi­cers briefed law­mak­ers truth­ful­ly in 2002 on the inter­ro­ga­tion meth­ods, but also said it is up to Con­gress to draw its own con­clu­sions.

Pelosi, who was some­times ruth­less in her dri­ve to the top, elic­its a fear and loathing among Repub­li­cans sim­i­lar to the effect for­mer Speak­er Newt Gin­grich had on Democ­rats. Her poll num­bers are also con­sid­er­ably low­er than Oba­ma’s. It is no acci­dent that Repub­li­can lead­ers time and again praise Oba­ma’s efforts to reach across the aisle and direct their fire instead at the speak­er. Her undis­guised dis­like of for­mer Pres­i­dent George W. Bush and pro­found ide­o­log­i­cal dis­putes with Repub­li­cans only fuel the fires. Gin­grich on Fri­day called Pelosi “a triv­ial politi­cian” dri­ven by par­ti­san pol­i­tics. Pelosi rad­i­cal­ly notched up the stakes Thurs­day when she accused the CIA of lying after sev­er­al Repub­li­cans, includ­ing for­mer Bush White House polit­i­cal czar Karl Rove, accused her of the same. The fight comes on the heels of inter­nal GOP polling warn­ing Repub­li­cans against sim­ply oppos­ing Obama.“According to the CIA’s record, Speak­er Pelosi was briefed on what had been done,” said Sen. Kit Bond of Mis­souri, the top Repub­li­can on the Sen­ate Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee, who said he has reviewed notes from the Pelosi brief­ing. “It’s out­ra­geous that a mem­ber of Con­gress would call our ter­ror-fight­ers liars.” The fact is, no one knows what hap­pened in the Sept. 4, 2002, brief­ing at issue oth­er than those who were in it. Their mem­o­ries diverge along par­ty lines. For­mer House Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee Chair­man Porter Goss, a Repub­li­can who was briefed with Pelosi and lat­er became CIA direc­tor, has insist­ed that they were told water­board­ing was used.Sen. Bob Gra­ham, a Flori­da Demo­c­rat who was the rank­ing mem­ber on the Sen­ate Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee, received an iden­ti­cal brief­ing, accord­ing to the CIA time­line, three weeks after Pelosi’s. Gra­ham backed Pelosi’s rec­ol­lec­tions. “When I was briefed, the sub­ject of water­board­ing did not come up. Nor did the treat­ment of Abu Zubay­dah or any oth­er spe­cif­ic detainee,” he told MSNBC on Fri­day. Gra­ham said the brief­in­gs came “the same week, in fact, that the CIA was sub­mit­ting its Nation­al Intel­li­gence Esti­mate on weapons of mass destruc­tion in Iraq, which proves so erro­neous that we went to war, have had thou­sands of per­sons killed and injured as a result of mis­in­for­ma­tion.” Pelosi has been con­sis­tent through­out in insist­ing that she was told only that the admin­is­tra­tion had legal grounds to use harsh tech­niques. As it turns out, out­side con­trac­tors had already water­board­ed al Qae­da sus­pect Abu Zubay­dah 83 times. Pelosi said the CIA “gave me inac­cu­rate and incom­plete infor­ma­tion.”

Both sides are now call­ing for declas­si­fi­ca­tion of the detailed notes from the brief­ing, but these are unlike­ly to clear up the matter.Panetta said in his memo to CIA employ­ees Fri­day, “Let me be clear: It is not our pol­i­cy or prac­tice to mis­lead Con­gress. ... Our con­tem­po­ra­ne­ous records from Sep­tem­ber 2002 indi­cate that CIA offi­cers briefed truth­ful­ly on the inter­ro­ga­tion of Abu Zubay­dah, describ­ing ‘the enhanced tech­niques that had been employed.’ Ulti­mate­ly, it is up to Con­gress to eval­u­ate all the evi­dence and reach its own con­clu­sions about what happened.“In his ear­li­er let­ter accom­pa­ny­ing the time­line, Panet­ta said it “presents the most thor­ough infor­ma­tion we have on dates, loca­tions, and names of all mem­bers of Con­gress who were briefed by the CIA on enhanced inter­ro­ga­tion tech­niques. This infor­ma­tion, how­ev­er, is drawn from the past files of the CIA and rep­re­sents MFRs mem­o­ran­dum for the record com­plet­ed at the time and notes that sum­ma­rized the best rec­ol­lec­tions of those individuals.“Panetta, a for­mer White House chief of staff and a polit­i­cal mod­er­ate, urged employ­ees to “ignore the noise and stay focused on your mission.”“We are an agency of high integri­ty, pro­fes­sion­al­ism, and ded­i­ca­tion,” he wrote. “Our task is to tell it like it is — even if that’s not what peo­ple always want to hear. Keep it up. Our nation­al secu­ri­ty depends on it.“Pelosi says her remarks are direct­ed at the Bush admin­is­tra­tion, not the CIA. “My crit­i­cism of the man­ner in which the Bush admin­is­tra­tion did not appro­pri­ate­ly inform Con­gress is sep­a­rate from my respect for those in the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty who work to keep our coun­try safe,” she said Friday.Panetta had argued stren­u­ous­ly in a pitched White House debate last month against releas­ing the four clas­si­fied mem­os by Bush admin­is­tra­tion lawyers that con­struct­ed the legal grounds for harsh inter­ro­ga­tion tech­niques. Oba­ma sided with those who urged their release, touch­ing off the debate that has claimed Pelosi as its chief vic­tim.

Gra­ham’s descrip­tion of his brief­ing echoed what Sen. Dianne Fein­stein said is typ­i­cal, say­ing it was “noth­ing very remark­able. They were dis­cussing the fact that they had detainees and that they were inter­ro­gat­ing detainees. But noth­ing such as that they were using these extreme tor­ture tech­niques that would have made it a sur­pris­ing brief­ing.” Fein­stein, a Cal­i­for­nia Demo­c­rat who now chairs the Sen­ate Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee, is con­duct­ing a thor­ough closed-door review of the entire mat­ter and expects to issue a report with­in eight months. The con­tro­ver­sy plays into argu­ments by for­mer Bush offi­cials, led by for­mer Vice Pres­i­dent Dick Cheney, that Oba­ma is under­min­ing Bush admin­is­tra­tion poli­cies that kept the coun­try safe. Sen­ate Repub­li­can leader Mitch McConnell of Ken­tucky urged Democ­rats to stop ‘attack­ing the CIA,’ and to ‘notice one more time that the CIA and our oth­er agen­cies have kept us safe since 9/11. ... I don’t know that any­body is upset that we haven’t been attacked again for 7 1/2 years. The CIA has been a big part of that.’ ”

“Pelosi’s Woes May Hit Oba­ma” by Car­olyn Lochhead; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 5/16/2009; p. A1.

2. Dur­ing the Con­gres­sion­al debate over Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s stim­u­lus pack­age, Pelosi became a tar­get for GOP ire.

“The dra­ma over Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s pricey stim­u­lus pack­age has put House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi at cen­ter stage. And when the cur­tain comes down on the final plan, the reviews may come to this: Did she play the uniter or the divider?

Pelosi, who has con­sis­tent­ly talked about work­ing across the aisle, led the charge last week as the ini­tial $819 bil­lion ver­sion of the Amer­i­can Recov­ery and Rein­vest­ment Act emerged from the House — approved with­out a sin­gle Repub­li­can vote.

Repub­li­cans man­aged what some had thought impos­si­ble: a show of uni­ty and steely resis­tance to the speak­er lit­tle more than a week after the pop­u­lar Demo­c­ra­t­ic pres­i­dent took the oath of office.

Fired up by a Rush Lim­baugh-led charge against what they called a ‘Pelosi-Reid’ pork-laden pack­age, GOP lead­ers took to the air­waves and the blogs to lam­baste items such as $335 mil­lion in fund­ing for edu­ca­tion against sex­u­al­ly trans­mit­ted dis­eases and a makeover of the Nation­al Mall. They talked up the need for more tax relief, which they said would bol­ster the econ­o­my and howled that they were shut out of the process.

The Repub­li­cans who seemed so lost and so in dis­ar­ray all of a sud­den grasped the upper hand,’ said Hoover Insti­tu­tion research fel­low Bill Whalen. ‘They’ve man­aged to change the focus from what the pack­age will do to what’s in the pack­age — waste and pork.’

With new Gallup polls show­ing that only 38 per­cent of Amer­i­cans sup­port the plan with­out major changes — and near­ly 80 per­cent believe the cur­rent plan will not stim­u­late the econ­o­my enough — it now appears the pres­i­dent ‘is slow­ly los­ing the high ground on this,’ he said.

‘Speak­er Pelosi lost round one in the mes­sage war,’ agrees GOP strate­gist Patrick Dorin­son. ‘She mis­read the elec­tion results. They were over­whelm­ing for Barack Oba­ma, but Con­gress is still lan­guish­ing with a 27 per­cent approval rat­ing.’ He said that Pelosi appeared to take Oba­ma’s approval as a sig­nal her par­ty could ‘make a grab bag of Demo­c­ra­t­ic wish lists’ and add them to the pack­age, he said. ‘Repub­li­cans right­ly point­ed out the hypocrisy.’ . . .”

“Heat’s on Pelosi in Stim­u­lus Bat­tle” by Car­la Mar­in­uc­ci; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 2/5/2009; pp. A1-A11.

3. Pelosi also became the focal point of blame for delays in the enact­ment of the stim­u­lus pack­age.

“Sen­ate Repub­li­cans blamed House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi of San Fran­cis­co Wednes­day for trip­ping up Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s $902 bil­lion stim­u­lus bill, as the giant leg­is­la­tion remained in the Sen­ate, hostage to GOP demands for more tax cuts and less spend­ing.

Repub­li­cans won a major vic­to­ry with unan­i­mous approval of an amend­ment late Wednes­day that would give home buy­ers a tax cred­it of up to $15,000, or 10 per­cent of the val­ue of new or exist­ing res­i­dences. Spon­sor Sen. John­ny Isak­son of Geor­gia said a sim­i­lar cred­it in 1974 helped revive the hous­ing mar­ket then. The amend­ment could add $19 bil­lion to the bil­l’s cost.

Oba­ma, after weeks of mak­ing over­tures to Repub­li­cans, warned that ‘a fail­ure to act, and act now, will turn cri­sis into cat­a­stro­phe.’ He said GOP crit­i­cisms ‘echo the very same failed eco­nom­ic the­o­ries that lead us into this cri­sis in the first place: the notion that tax cuts alone will solve all our prob­lems; that we can ignore fun­da­men­tal chal­lenges like ener­gy inde­pen­dence and the high cost of health care.’

Repub­li­cans have found new uni­ty attack­ing the stim­u­lus as a big-spend­ing bonan­za that will do lit­tle to stim­u­late the econ­o­my. A House vote last week that failed to draw even one Repub­li­can vote and lost 11 con­ser­v­a­tive Democ­rats gal­va­nized Sen­ate Repub­li­cans, who tout­ed new polls show­ing ris­ing pub­lic skep­ti­cism of the plan.

Oba­ma’s intense woo­ing of the oppos­ing par­ty so far seems to have paid few div­i­dends. His court­ing of his for­mer rival John McCain, R‑Ariz., has not stopped McCain from going to the Sen­ate floor to attack whole sec­tions of the stim­u­lus bill as a giant ear­mark and vow­ing to vote against it.

‘No bill is bet­ter than this bill, because it increas­es the deficit by over $1 tril­lion,’ McCain said.

Repub­li­cans have trained most of their fire, how­ev­er, on Pelosi, whose poll num­bers are clos­er to their own than to Oba­ma’s. They say she jammed a Demo­c­ra­t­ic wish list through the House with­out their con­sul­ta­tion. . . .”

“GOP Blames Pelosi for Snag in Stim­u­lus Bill” by Car­olyn Lochhead; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 2/5/2009; p. A7.

4. Where­as many lead­ing econ­o­mists feel that a larg­er stim­u­lus (and/or sup­ple­men­tal stim­uli) may well be required to avoid eco­nom­ic cat­a­stro­phe, Pelosi has thrown cold water on aspi­ra­tions for such an event.

“House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi said Thurs­day that a sec­ond eco­nom­ic stim­u­lus pack­age is not “in the cards” in the short term, dis­ap­point­ing those seek­ing anoth­er quick infu­sion of fed­er­al dol­lars into the strug­gling econ­o­my.

Pelosi’s state­ment came less than a month after Pres­i­dent Oba­ma signed the $787 bil­lion stim­u­lus mea­sure into law and on the same day the Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion warned state offi­cials gath­ered in Wash­ing­ton that it would keep a close eye on how they spend the mon­ey allot­ted to them from that pack­age.

Pelosi had helped nudge the idea of anoth­er stim­u­lus on Tues­day when she said that Con­gress should “keep the door open” to the pos­si­bil­i­ty. And House Appro­pri­a­tions Chair­man David Obey, D‑Wis., said this week he would begin “prepar­ing options” for a sec­ond stim­u­lus.

But Demo­c­ra­t­ic aides have cau­tioned strong­ly that anoth­er stim­u­lus is not a seri­ous pos­si­bil­i­ty in the short term, and Pelosi said Thurs­day that she “real­ly would like to see this stim­u­lus pack­age play out” before con­tem­plat­ing anoth­er one.

“I don’t think you ever close the door to being pre­pared for what­ev­er even­tu­al­i­ty may come,” Pelosi said at her week­ly news con­fer­ence, but empha­sized that a sec­ond stim­u­lus pack­age is “just not right now some­thing that’s in the cards.”

Some promi­nent econ­o­mists have sug­gest­ed that a sec­ond stim­u­lus, cost­ing sev­er­al hun­dred bil­lion dol­lars, might well be need­ed. Mark Zan­di, the chief econ­o­mist at Moody’s Economy.com who has become a key advis­er to House Democ­rats, said this week that “pol­i­cy­mak­ers need to do more. I don’t think we’re done. ... I think anoth­er stim­u­lus pack­age is a rea­son­able prob­a­bil­i­ty, giv­en the way things are going.”

The Wall Street Jour­nal’s most recent fore­cast­ing sur­vey, a poll of 49 econ­o­mists, found that more than 40 per­cent of respon­dents thought a sec­ond large stim­u­lus pack­age remains nec­es­sary to boost the econ­o­my. . . .”

“Pelosi Dash­es Hopes for More Aid Soon” by Ben Per­sh­ing [Wash­ing­ton Post]; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 3/13/2009; p. A6.

5. The con­clud­ing part of the pro­gram reviews infor­ma­tion about the links between SS offi­cer Otto von Bolschwing, his pro­tege Helene Von Damm, his close friend and busi­ness asso­ciate Jus­tice William New­som and the Pelosi fam­i­ly.

“For the past 10 years, Otto Albrecht von Bolschwing’s care­ful­ly con­struct­ed life in Amer­i­ca has been com­ing apart a piece at a time.

He was pres­i­dent of a high-tech­nol­o­gy invest­ment firm with head­quar­ters in Sacra­men­to and sub­sidiaries in Sil­i­con Val­ley. It went bank­rupt in a 1971 scan­dal.

He was a dot­ing hus­band until his ail­ing wife killed her­self in 1978.

He num­bered among his busi­ness asso­ciates mil­lion­aires, bankers and sci­en­tists. Then his brain stem was hit with a rare dis­ease two years ago, send­ing him into iso­la­tion at a Carmichael rest home.

He told his friends he had worked for the Amer­i­cans dur­ing and after the World War II. But in May, the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment began pro­ceed­ings to deport him for lying about his Nazi past.

In a wide­ly pub­li­cized attempt to revoke von Bolschwing’s cit­i­zen­ship, the Jus­tice Depart­ment accused him of help­ing Hitler’s per­se­cu­tion of Euro­pean Jews, and of being an asso­ciate of Adolf Eich­mann, the archi­tect of Germany’s mass killing pro­gram.

The dis­clo­sures come at the end of a long, improb­a­ble career that took von Bolschwing through the Nazi hier­ar­chy, into the CIA and final­ly to the high­est lev­els of Amer­i­can busi­ness.

The list of peo­ple he knew, some of whom met him through a Cal­i­for­nia high tech­nol­o­gy busi­ness ven­ture in 1970 reads like a Who’s Who. They include jus­tice William A. New­som of the 1st Dis­trict Court of Appeals in San Fran­cis­co. Helene von Damm, Pres­i­dent Reagan’s per­son­al sec­re­tary. Thomas A. Franzi­oli, banker to the Boston Cabot fam­i­ly, Emanuel Fthenakis, Fairchild Corp. senior vice pres­i­dent. Elmer Bob­st, pres­i­dent of Warn­er Lam­bert Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal Co.; and Albert Driscoll, for­mer New Jer­sey gov­er­nor and Warn­er Lambert’s chair­man.

‘I’m non­plused.’ Jus­tice New­som said. ‘I thought, if any­thing, Otto had been pro-Amer­i­can dur­ing the war.’

As a busi­ness­man, von Bolschwing was vague about the war years. He said he had been a Gestapo pris­on­er and had worked for the CIA in post­war Ger­many.

In 1969 he was asked about his Ger­man past dur­ing a job inter­view with Trans-inter­na­tion­al Com­put­er Invest­ment Corp. a high fly­ing invest­ment firm that had found­ed sev­er­al com­pa­nies in the Sil­i­con Val­ley. Von Bolschwing told his inter­view­er he had been a lawyer.

‘Dur­ing what years was that?’ he was asked, accord­ing to a tran­script of the inter­view.

‘Until I was thrown in the Gestapo prison … in 1942.’ Von Bolschwing respond­ed ‘That was not a good expe­ri­ence … One should for­get it because (1 or 2 illeg­i­ble words) it only is a neg­a­tive approach to life to think about bad things.’

After a moment’s reflec­tion, he added ‘I think it would be bet­ter to speak about recent times than … God knows how many years ago.’


Who was this ex-Nazi, and how did he pros­per in Amer­i­ca? Von Bolschwing’s attor­ney would not allow an inter­view. This account was devel­oped from peo­ple who knew him, accounts of Nazi Ger­many, court records and busi­ness files.

Born Oct. 15, 1909 to East Pruss­ian nobil­i­ty (the fam­i­ly estate was found­ed in 1302), von Bolschwing attend­ed school in Bres­lau, and became a Nazi par­ty mem­ber at the age of 24, the only mem­ber of his fam­i­ly to do so.

He joined the SS, the elite secret police of the Nazis, six years lat­er. Accord­ing to the Jus­tice Depart­ment, as an SS cap­tain he helped plan the expul­sion of Jews from the Ger­man Econ­o­my and devel­oped anti-Jew­ish pro­pa­gan­da to force their emi­gra­tion from Ger­many.

In a his­to­ry of the SS by Heinz Hohne, von Bolschwing is described as “a par­ty mem­ber, an SD (for­eign intel­li­gence) informer and expe­ri­enced sales­man in the motor trade.

In 1938, ‘he was in con­tact with a group of Pales­tin­ian Ger­mans who lined their pock­ets by cer­tain extra­mur­al activ­i­ties,’ accord­ing to Hohne, who wrote that von Bolschwing spied on the Zion­ist Hagana army.


Eject­ed from Pales­tine by the British for espi­onage, he sur­faced in Roma­nia as a gov­ern­ment ‘oil expert.’ By his own account, in 1941 he helped the lead­er­ship of the Iron Guard, a right wing move­ment, escape to Berlin after it had gone on a three-day ram­page in which many Jews – the esti­mates vary con­sid­er­ably – were killed.

The same year he became part­ner in the Ams­ter­dam bank, the Bankvoor Oen­roerende Zachen. Inves­ti­ga­tors said they sus­pect the bank mat have played a role in the ‘Aryaniza­tion’ – the forced sale of Dutch Jew­ish farms, busi­ness­es, homes and secu­ri­ties.

In August 1941, von Bolschwing was tossed into a Gestapo prison with no for­mal charges and in April 1942 he was just as mys­te­ri­ous­ly released. In 1945 he helped Amer­i­can troops enter­ing Aus­tria catch Nazi offi­cials and SS offi­cers, accord­ing to a let­ter writ­ten for von Bolschwing by a colonel in the 71st U.S. Infantry.

The war over, von Bolschwing made a move cru­cial to his future suc­cess. He became an Amer­i­can spy.

‘He knocked on the door of U.S. Army intel­li­gence,’ a source explained. ‘and said. I’m expe­ri­enced, I have a ring oper­at­ing, If you give me a pay­check I’ll make you very hap­py.’ He was a sort of a minia­ture Rein­hard Gehlen,


Gehlen was the Nazi gen­er­al who helped the CIA build a spy net­work in post war east­ern Europe, then became head of post­war Ger­man intel­li­gence activ­i­ties. Accord­ing to one uncon­firmed report, von Bolschwing became the con­troller of Gehlen’s CIA oper­a­tion after Gehlen returned to the Ger­man gov­ern­ment. [Empha­sis added.]

‘He must have done some­thing right’ the source said.

In Decem­ber 1953, von Bolschwing applied to immi­grate to the Unit­ed States, and on Feb­ru­ary 2, 1954, he arrived in this coun­try. After obtain­ing sev­er­al menial jobs, he became a cit­i­zen in 1959 and his career took a sud­den upward turn.

He became an assis­tant to the direc­tor of inter­na­tion­al mar­ket­ing at Warn­er Lam­bert Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals Co., devel­op­ing close ties to the company’s pres­i­dent, the late Elmer Bob­st, and its hon­orary board chair­man, for­mer New Jer­sey Gov. Alfred Driscol­ll, accord­ing to a close asso­ciate.

‘His con­tacts at Warn­er Lam­bert were way out of pro­por­tion with his job.’ The asso­ciate said. ‘Driscoll con­tin­ued to write him rec­om­men­da­tions for many years’.


By the mid 1960’s, von Bolschwing had become an exec­u­tive with Cabot Man­u­fac­tur­ing. As chief finan­cial offi­cer for its Ger­man sub­sidiary, he devel­oped a $50 mil­lion car­bon black for Cabot in Ger­many.

The deal was financed through through Thomas Franzi­oli, senior vice pres­i­dent for the First Nation­al Bank of Boston, Franzi­oli recalls that von Bolschwing then branched out on his own.

‘He was start­ing a busi­ness import­ing wine from Argenti­na’ Franzi­oli recalled. ‘I don’t know if it ever got off the ground.’

In March 1969 von Bolschwing got a job in high tech­nol­o­gy. He was retained as an inter­na­tion­al busi­ness con­sul­tant by TCI, the Sacra­men­to firm.

The com­pa­ny planned to com­mer­cial­ize on tech­nol­o­gy devel­op­ment in the Sil­i­con Val­ley and used a few years ear­li­er to mon­i­tor troop move­ments in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war accord­ing to the firm’s founder, Oswlad S. Williams.

TCI’s sub­sidiaries in Palo Alto and Moun­tain View, Advanced Infor­ma­tion Sys­tems and Inter­na­tion­al Imag­ing Sys­tems, were devel­op­ing a high vol­ume com­put­er net­work for busi­ness and a nav­i­ga­tion sys­tem for oil tankers using satel­lite com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Williams said.


The com­pa­ny also did clas­si­fied work for the Depart­ment of Defense. ‘Ours was going to be a sen­si­tive thing.’ Williams explained. ‘We all had to have secu­ri­ty clear­ances.’

Von Bolschwing was brought in because ‘we want­ed con­tracts in Europe and he had them.’ Williams said.

A TCI memo writ­ten in 1969 report­ed that its new con­sul­tant ‘has extreme­ly valu­able con­nec­tions and infor­ma­tion in Ger­many, Switzer­land, Liecht­en­stein, the Nether­lands, Antilles and South Amer­i­ca. Mr. von Bolschwing’s con­nec­tions in these coun­tries are cur­rent.’

His con­tacts include offi­cials of the Ger­man branch of Chase Man­hat­tan Bank and an own­er of the Berlin­er Han­dels Gesellschaft in Frank­furt, one of Europe’s largest banks, the memo said.

TCI’s high pow­ered direc­tors – one was J. Paul Get­ty Jr. son of the oil bil­lion­aire – thought enough of von Bolschwing to make him the firm’s pres­i­dent in 1970.

‘He seems like a very polite and cul­tured per­son,’ said Wal­ter F. Lev­er­ton, for­mer vice pres­i­dent for satel­lite sys­tems of the Aero-space Corp. Lev­er­ton sat on the board of TCI.


Jus­tice New­som, who trav­eled as a TCI attor­ney with von Bolschwing in Europe in 1969–70, and said von Bolschwing allud­ed to wartime work for the Amer­i­cans.

‘He was suave and plau­si­ble’ New­som said. ‘He seemed to have all the cre­den­tials… He looked kind of world weary,’ recalled New­som. ‘He had the long cig­a­rette hold­er, his hair was slicked back.’

Emanuel Fthenakis, who had resigned an Inter­na­tion­al Tele­phone and Tele­graph vice-pres­i­den­cy to sign with TCI, also trav­eled with von Bolschwing in Europe, meet­ing his bank­ing and indus­try con­tacts.

‘Otto was very pleas­ant and soft spo­ken,’ Fthenakis said. ‘He talked about his past of work­ing for intel­li­gence. I don’t know if it was the CIA or what. But after the war, he helped the Unit­ed States and the allies to find Nazis.’

Records and inter­views with TCI offi­cials indi­cate that Helene von Damm, Pres­i­dent Regan’s Aus­tri­an born, deputy assis­tant, trans­lat­ed some Ger­man con­tracts for TCI and invest­ed $1,000 in it while she was than Gov. Regan’s sec­re­tary in Sacra­men­to.

Von Damm was ‘too busy’ to talk about von Bolschwing, but through her White House sec­re­tary said she knew him ‘social­ly’ in Sacra­men­to ‘many years ago.’


In 1970 TCI ran into trou­ble with the Depart­ment of Cor­po­ra­tions, Sev­er­al major stock­hold­ers were syn­di­cat­ing its stock, sell­ing it to small investors in Sacra­men­to.

‘It was the hottest thing in town.’ Recalled Bri­an Van Camp now a pri­vate attor­ney but then the com­mis­sion­er of cor­po­ra­tions.

The trad­ing was found to be ille­gal under a 1968 law requir­ing secu­ri­ty sales to be reg­is­tered.

The Depart­ment of Cor­po­ra­tions sus­pend­ed trad­ing in TCI stock, and in 1972 the Sacra­men­to Dis­trict Attorney’s office pros­e­cut­ed sev­er­al stock­hold­ers, call­ing it ‘pos­si­bly the biggest stock fraud in Cal­i­for­nia his­to­ry.’

Von Bolschwing had not syn­di­cat­ed any stock and his name was not men­tioned in the news accounts of the prosce­cu­tion. He asked for time to bail out TCI with ‘a cer­tain finan­cial deal involv­ing coal min­ing in Ten­nessee’, accord­ing to a Depart­ment of Cor­po­ra­tions mem­o­ran­dum. Bud he couldn’t do it and TCI went under.

The busi­ness fail­ure rocked von Bolschwing. On its heels, his wife, suf­fer­ing from a painful ill­ness, took her own life. ‘He was nev­er the same after that’ an asso­ciate said.

A year lat­er, he had a new wor­ry.

Jus­tice Depart­ment inves­ti­ga­tors had stum­bled across the name of Otto von Bolschwing in 1979 while work­ing on the case of Valer­ian Tri­fa, a leader of the Iron Guard’s anti-Jew­ish ram­page in Roma­nia.

Inves­ti­ga­tors had found Tri­fa in Detroit and in inves­ti­gat­ing him, they inter­viewed von Bolschwing. He admit­ted help­ing Tri­fa and oth­er Iron Guard mem­bers escape Roma­nia after the 1941 pogrom. But in a sworn state­ment he denied ever hav­ing been a mem­ber of the SS the SD or the Nazi Par­ty.

The Inves­ti­ga­tors came back again in Feb­ru­ary. This time it was a dif­fer­ent sto­ry, as the tran­script shows.

Ques­tion: Were you a mem­ber of the Nazi Par­ty?

Von Bolschwing: Yes … 1932 I think, through 1945.

Q: Were you ever a mem­ber of the SS?

Von Bolschwing: Yes … from 1941 or 1942, I don’t know.

With those words, the last frag­ment of von Bolschwing’s illu­so­ry life in Amer­i­ca crum­bled.”

“Ex-Naz­i’s Bril­liant U.S. Career Stran­gled in a Web of Lies” by Pete Carey; San Jose Mer­cury; 11/20/1981; pp. 1A-24A.

6. The Get­ty inter­ests were  very close to Otto Von Bolschwing, with J. Paul Get­ty, Jr. being a direc­tor of Von Bolschwing’s TCI firm, as seen above.


7. Not­ing anoth­er part of the Von Bolschwing lega­cy, the pro­gram notes pro­found Get­ty fam­i­ly influ­ence on Bay Area Democ­rats. Judge William New­som was one of Von Bolschwing’s close per­son­al friends and a direc­tor of TCI, Von Bolschwing’s elec­tron­ics firm. His son Gavin New­som is may­or of San Fran­cis­co. (In 2004, New­som ini­ti­at­ed the gay mar­riage pro­gram in San Fran­cis­co, in direct con­tra­ven­tion of Cal­i­for­nia law (under which gay mar­riage was ille­gal). Many key Democ­rats feel that Newsom’s actions had much to do with get­ting the Chris­t­ian right to turn out in force for the 2004 elec­tion, there­by mak­ing it close enough for the Repub­li­cans to steal. When inter­viewed about his motives, New­som replied with a George W. Bushi­an smirk. House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi is also very close to the Newsom/Getty axis, being a sis­ter-in-law of Gavin New­som. Again, the Get­tys are VERY close to this bunch, and some mem­bers of the fam­i­ly have per­pet­u­at­ed the reac­tionary fam­i­ly polit­i­cal her­itage. What we may well be see­ing here are “Bor­mann Democ­rats.”

“Belin­da Bar­bara New­som, who was born into one polit­i­cal­ly promi­nent Bay Area fam­i­ly and mar­ried into anoth­er, died Sat­ur­day at their home in San Fran­cis­co at age 73. . . . Ms. New­som, who went by Bar­bara and whose mar­ried name was Pelosi, was the sis­ter-in-law of House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi and the aunt of San Fran­cis­co May­or Gavin New­som. . . ‘We were bap­tized Catholic and Demo­c­rat,’ chuck­led [Von Bolschwing friend and busi­ness part­ner] Bill New­som, the retired state appel­late court jus­tice and father of May­or New­som. . . .”

“Belin­da Bar­bara Newsom–Politics Filled Her Life” by Julian Guthrie; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 11/24/2008; p. B3.

8. Flesh­ing out the “Get­ty Axis,” we review the fact that Karl Rove’s father Louis was the head geol­o­gist for Get­ty Oil!

” . . . His [Karl Rove’s] response was: Well, my senior year in high school, my Dad was com­ing home on Christ­mas Eve. He had got­ten a new job, a huge job as the chief geol­o­gist at Get­ty Oil Com­pa­ny in Los Ange­les. We were going to cel­e­brate my birth­day the next day. . . .”

“James Moore Explains Karl Rove, the Archi­tect of Bush’s Mas­ter Plan” [Buz­zflash Inter­view]; Buzzflash.com;9/19/2006.


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