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FTR #919 The Trumpenkampfverbande, Part 2: German Ostpolitik, Part 2

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This broad­cast was record­ed in one, 60-minute seg­ment [6].

MeinKampf [7]

Waffen SS-clad World War II reenactors, in original photo used by Trump [8]

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

Intro­duc­tion: This pro­gram con­tin­ues analy­sis from FTR #918 [9].

Where­as GOP Pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee Don­ald Trump’s pro­nounce­ments about Rus­sia and Ukraine, in com­bi­na­tion with his for­mer cam­paign man­ag­er Paul Man­afort’s work for the Russ­ian-allied Yanukovich gov­ern­ment, have fed talk of Trump as a “Russian/Kremlin/Putin” dupe/agent, avail­able evi­dence sug­gests that “The Don­ald” is a cat’s paw for pow­er­ful German/Underground Reich ele­ments, who are man­i­fest­ing tra­di­tion­al Ger­man Ost­poli­tik.

Begin­ning with dis­cus­sion of Man­afort, the evi­dence weighs over­whelm­ing­ly against the pre­vail­ing the­o­ry that Man­afort is a Russ­ian pup­pet, there­fore Trump is a Russ­ian pup­pet, etc.

Man­afort worked for Fer­di­nand Mar­cos when Mar­cos was help­ing him­self to a large amount of  Gold­en Lily loot in the Philip­pines. The U.S. want­ed to use more of the gold for their own pur­pos­es, and Mar­cos was ulti­mate­ly removed [10] in the “peo­ple pow­er” coup/covert oper­a­tion. Ulti­mate­ly, Cora­zon Aquino, the wid­ow of Benig­no Aquino, a long-time CIA agent and pro­tege of Edward Lans­dale [11] replaced him. (Lans­dale was one of the main U.S. agents involved with the Gold­en Lily recov­ery pro­gram.) Inter­est­ing­ly and sig­nif­i­cant­ly, Aquino’s vice-pres­i­den­tial can­di­date was Sal­vador Lau­rel, the son of Jose Lau­rel, the pup­pet ruler [12] of the Philip­pines for the Japan­ese occu­pa­tion gov­ern­ment dur­ing World War II.

Man­afort appears to be some­thing of an advance agent/fixer. In all prob­a­bil­i­ty he was help­ing to pave the way for the Maid­an coup. Remem­ber: the car­di­nal rule for a good dou­ble agent–“make your­self indis­pens­able to the effort.”

IlDuceIlDouche [13]By the twist­ed ratio­nale pre­sent­ed by our media estab­lish­ment, we could come up with this: Petro Poroshenko, the cur­rent head of state of Ukraine, was Yanukovich’s finance min­is­ter, pre­sid­ing over the for­mer’s inef­fec­tive and cor­rupt gov­ern­ment. The West, includ­ing the U.S., backs Poroshenko. There­fore, the West, includ­ing the U.S.

Martin Bormann (right) with Himmler [14]

Mar­tin Bor­mann (right) with Himm­ler

Fun­da­men­tal to the analy­sis pre­sent­ed here is cor­po­rate Ger­many, its rela­tion­ship to the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work [15] and, in turn, Don­ald Trump and peo­ple con­nect­ed with him. The Bor­mann net­work dom­i­nates [16] cor­po­rate Ger­many: ” . . . Atop an orga­ni­za­tion­al pyra­mid that dom­i­nates the indus­try of West Ger­many through banks, vot­ing rights enjoyed by major­i­ty share­hold­ers in sig­nif­i­cant car­tels, and the pro­fes­sion­al input of a rel­a­tive­ly young lead­er­ship group of lawyers, invest­ment spe­cial­ists, bankers, and indus­tri­al­ists, he [Bor­mann] is sat­is­fied that he achieved his aim of help­ing the Father­land back on its feet. To ensure con­ti­nu­ity of pur­pose and direc­tion, a close watch is main­tained on the prof­it state­ments and man­age­ment reports of cor­po­ra­tions under its con­trol else­where. This lead­er­ship group of twen­ty, which is in fact a board of direc­tors, is chaired by Bor­mann, but pow­er has shift­ed to the younger men who will car­ry on the ini­tia­tive that grew from that his­toric meet­ing in Stras­bourg on August 10, 1944. Old Hein­rich Mueller, chief of secu­ri­ty for the NSDAP in South Amer­i­ca, is the most feared of all, hav­ing the pow­er of life and death over those deemed not to be act­ing in the best inter­ests of the orga­ni­za­tion. Some still envi­sion a Fourth Reich. . . What will not pass is the eco­nom­ic influ­ences of the Bor­mann orga­ni­za­tion, whose com­mer­cial direc­tives are obeyed almost with­out ques­tion by the high­est ech­e­lons of West Ger­man finance and indus­try. ‘All orders come from the share­hold­ers in South Amer­i­ca,’ I have been told by a spokesman for Mar­tin Bor­mann. . . .

Before return­ing to the sub­ject of Joseph E. Schmitz and high­light­ing the com­plex, opaque Trump real estate deal­ings with promi­nent Ger­mans and cor­po­rate inter­ests, the pro­gram reviews some of the essen­tial ele­ments of analy­sis from FTR #918 [9].

In our pre­vi­ous pro­gram, we pre­sent­ed a 1949  “Open Let­ter to Stal­in” pub­lished [17] in the Buerg­er Zeitung, a lead­ing Ger­man-lan­guage paper in the Unit­ed States. Note­wor­thy for our pur­pos­es here is the fact that the paper is the de-fac­to out­let for the Steuben Soci­ety, the top pan-Ger­man orga­ni­za­tion in the Unit­ed States. As will be seen below, the Steuben Soci­ety was part of the Nazi Fifth Col­umn in the U.S. before World War II and part of the Under­ground Reich infra­struc­ture in this coun­try after the war. In the lat­ter capac­i­ty, it advo­cat­ed for the release and reha­bil­i­ta­tion of Nazis, includ­ing war crim­i­nals.

Also of sig­nif­i­cance is the fact that the author, Bruno Fricke, was an asso­ciate of Otto Strass­er. Strass­er, along with his broth­er Gre­gor, was part of Ernst Rohm’s SA. Rohm was liq­ui­dat­ed in the Night of the Long Knives, along with Gre­gor Strass­er. Otto escaped to Czechoslavakia.

Tthe Buerg­er Zeitung was very anti-Com­mu­nist and strong­ly sup­port­ive of Joseph McCarthy’s witch hunts. Don­ald Trump’s lawyer for years was Roy Cohn, McCarthy’s top aide.

Waffen SS-clad World War II reenactors, in original photo used by Trump [8]

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

Three years after that let­ter was pub­lished in the Buerg­er Zeitung, the Sovi­et Union respond­ed [17] with its Sovi­et Note of 3/10/1952. One of the most impor­tant aspect of the analy­sis of this event is the Ger­man plan to achieve a unit­ed Europe under Ger­man dom­i­na­tion, which has, of course, been achieved. ” . . . In the pro-Ade­nauer press, includ­ing the The Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, Christ und Welt, The Deutsche Zeitung of Stuttgart, edi­to­ri­als have been writ­ten assur­ing the Rus­sians that Dr. Adenauer’s pol­i­cy aims to cre­ate the secu­ri­ty nec­es­sary for both the Ger­mans and the Rus­sians, and that this can only be brought about after Ger­many had become a third pow­er fac­tor which could employ its influ­ence in such a way as to deter the Unit­ed States “from start­ing a pre­ven­tive war.” [The aggres­sive U.S./NATO stance toward Ukraine and Rus­sia are impress­ing many around the world in a fash­ion that would be famil­iar to those in the ear­ly 1950’s–D.E.] Thus, while, in the short run, the Bonn Gov­ern­ment aims to cre­ate a Unit­ed Europe, it hopes ulti­mate­ly to reach a sol­id under­stand­ing with the Sovi­ets at the expense of the Unit­ed States. . . .”

This “Europa Germanica”–the EU in the event–was, in turn, to become a Third Force. In exchange for mov­ing away from the push for a Third World War and pulling Europe out of NATO, this Third Force would gain con­ces­sions from the Sovi­ets. Also of note is the fact that a major fea­ture of this Unit­ed Europe would be an all-Euro­pean army, also under Ger­man dom­i­na­tion.

” . . . The Ger­man Chancellor’s plan is that the U.S.A. is now so deeply com­mit­ted to her Euro­pean defense pledge that she will read­i­ly sac­ri­fice dozens of bil­lions of dol­lars in the strength­en­ing and the rearm­ing of a Ger­man-dom­i­nat­ed Europe. After is this accom­plished, Dr. Adenauer’s grandiose con­cept envi­sions nego­ti­a­tions with Rus­sia with the prospect of get­ting sub­stan­tial ter­ri­to­r­i­al con­ces­sions from the Krem­lin in East­ern Europe for which Ger­many in return will break away, with the whole of West­ern Europe, from the North Atlantic Treaty Orga­ni­za­tion. . . .” Trump’s pro­nounce­ments about NATO are to be seen in this con­text.

As we shall see in this broad­cast, a major push is under­way to estab­lish a “Euro-corps”–precisely the sort of Ger­man-dom­i­nat­ed Euro­pean army that was envi­sioned in the ear­ly 1950s.

” . . . . The reac­tion of the Ger­man strate­gists to the Sovi­et Note of March 10, 1952, how­ev­er, expos­es their true designs. Ger­man geo-polit­i­cal jour­nals speak of it as “the high­est trump card in the hands of the Chan­cel­lor” which will enable him to mow down the resis­tance of France against Germany’s con­cept of a unit­ed Europe. The pro-Ade­nauer press inter­pret­ed the Russ­ian Note as a tremen­dous asset in speed­ing up the timetable for the cre­ation of a Euro­pean army under Ger­man dom­i­na­tion. . . .”

NOTE: It is our view that the Trump pro­nounce­ments serve a pur­pose sim­i­lar to the “Open Let­ter to Stal­in” pub­lished in the Buerg­er Zeitung–a com­mu­nique designed to pro­mote what the pro-Ade­nauer press char­ac­ter­ized as: ” . . . the heat­ed atmos­phere of an auc­tion room where two eager oppo­nents out­bid each oth­er. . . .”

We feel that a vehi­cle for the com­mu­ni­ca­tion of pol­i­cy vis a vis Rus­sia, Ukraine and NATO to Trump is Joseph E. Schmitz, an ultra-right wing Ger­manophile and Von Steuben-obsessed for­mer Depart­ment of Defense Inspec­tor Gen­er­al. In turn, we believe that Ger­man cor­po­rate and Under­ground Reich con­nec­tions to both Trump and the Schmitz fam­i­ly under­lie Trump’s pub­lic utter­ances.

The Trump pro­nounce­ments that have drawn so much media fire are, in our opin­ion, func­tion­ing in a man­ner anal­o­gous to the “Open Let­ter to Stal­in” pub­lished by Nazi vet­er­ans Fricke and Otto Strass­er in the Buerg­er Zeitungto sig­nal a bid­ding war between the U.S. and Rus­sia, to Ger­many’s ulti­mate ben­e­fit.

Joseph E. Schmitz’s broth­er John P. Schmitz [18] rep­re­sents pow­er­ful Ger­man cor­po­ra­tions, help­ing them net­work with their Amer­i­can coun­ter­parts: ” . . . John’s clients have includ­ed the US Cham­ber of Com­merce, Gen­er­al Elec­tric, Bay­er AG, Ber­tels­mann, Bosch GmbH, Deutsche Welle, Gillette, Pfiz­er, Microsoft, Ver­i­zon, Eli Lil­ly Co., Ford Motor Co., and Arke­ma., among oth­ers. . . .”

Trump’s alto­geth­er opaque real estate projects have elud­ed even The New York Times’ inves­tiga­tive abil­i­ties. What the Times did man­age to uncov­er are pow­er­ful rela­tion­ships [19] between the Byzan­tine Trump real estate empire and Ger­man inter­ests that are almost cer­tain­ly linked to the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work and the Under­ground Reich: ” . . . In a typ­i­cal­ly com­plex deal, loan doc­u­ments show that four lenders — Ger­man Amer­i­can Cap­i­tal, a sub­sidiary of Deutsche Bank; UBS Real Estate Secu­ri­ties; Gold­man Sachs Mort­gage Com­pa­ny; and Bank of Chi­na — agreed in Novem­ber 2012 to lend $950 mil­lion to the three com­pa­nies that own the build­ing. Those com­pa­nies, obscure­ly named HWA 1290 III LLC, HWA 1290 IV LLC and HWA 1290 V LLC, are owned by three oth­er com­pa­nies in which Mr. Trump has stakes. . . . .  At 40 Wall Street, Mr. Trump does not own even a sliv­er of the actu­al land; his long-term ground lease gives him the right to improve and man­age the build­ing. The land is owned by two lim­it­ed lia­bil­i­ty com­pa­nies; Mr. Trump pays the two enti­ties a total of $1.6 mil­lion a year for the ground lease, accord­ing to doc­u­ments filed with the S.E.C.

The major­i­ty own­er, 40 Wall Street Hold­ings Cor­po­ra­tion, owns 80 per­cent of the land; New Scan­dic Wall Lim­it­ed Part­ner­ship owns the rest, accord­ing to pub­lic doc­u­ments. New Scan­dic Wall Lim­it­ed Partnership’s chief exec­u­tive is Joachim Fer­di­nand von Grumme-Dou­glas, a busi­ness­man based in Europe, accord­ing to these doc­u­ments.

The peo­ple behind 40 Wall Street Hold­ings are hard­er to iden­ti­fy. For years, Germany’s Hin­neberg fam­i­ly [20], which made its for­tune in the ship­ping indus­try, con­trolled the prop­er­ty through a com­pa­ny called 40 Wall Lim­it­ed Part­ner­ship. In late 2014, their inter­est in the land was trans­ferred to a new com­pa­ny, 40 Wall Street Hold­ings. The Times was not able to iden­ti­fy the own­er or own­ers of this com­pa­ny, and the Trump Orga­ni­za­tion declined to com­ment. . . .”

The com­plex, opaque nature of the Trump real estate hold­ings is char­ac­ter­is­tic of the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work’s oper­at­ing struc­ture. Again, we are of the opin­ion that the pres­ence of Joseph E. Schmitz as a key Trump for­eign pol­i­cy advis­er, the Trump real estate oper­a­tions’ appar­ent rela­tion­ship with Ger­man cor­po­rate inter­ests and John P. Schmitz’s Ger­man cor­po­rate links are cen­tral to Trump’s pro­nounce­ments about Rus­sia, Ukraine and NATO.

At the same time as Trump is sig­nal­ing Ger­man Ost­poli­tik, many of the key fea­tures of what Ade­nauer artic­u­lat­ed in the ear­ly 1950s are being pro­posed and/or imple­ment­ed by Ger­many at this time:

The pro­gram con­cludes with a tran­si­tion­al ele­ment to our next pro­gram: Joseph E. Schmitz’s report­ed [25] anti-Semi­tism and Holo­caust revi­sion­ism: ” . . . 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 . . . 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,’ . . . ”

Pro­gram High­lights Include:

1. Not­ing the back­ground of Paul Man­afort, the evi­dence weighs over­whelm­ing­ly against the pre­vail­ing the­o­ry that Man­afort is a Russ­ian pup­pet, there­fore Trump is a Russ­ian pup­pet, etc.

Man­afort worked for Fer­di­nand Mar­cos when Mar­cos was help­ing him­self to a large amount of  Gold­en Lily loot in the Philip­pines. The U.S. want­ed to use more of the gold for their own pur­pos­es, and Mar­cos was ulti­mate­ly removed [10] in the “peo­ple pow­er” coup/covert oper­a­tion. Ulti­mate­ly, Cora­zon Aquino, the wid­ow of Benig­no Aquino, a long-time CIA agent and pro­tege of Edward Lans­dale [11] replaced him. (Lans­dale was one of the main U.S. agents involved with the Gold­en Lily recov­ery pro­gram.) Inter­est­ing­ly and sig­nif­i­cant­ly, Aquino’s vice-pres­i­den­tial can­di­date was Sal­vador Lau­rel, the son of Jose Lau­rel, the pup­pet ruler [12] of the Philip­pines for the Japan­ese occu­pa­tion gov­ern­ment dur­ing World War II.

Man­afort appears to be some­thing of an advance agent/fixer. In all prob­a­bil­i­ty he was help­ing to pave the way for the Maid­an coup. Remem­ber: the car­di­nal rule for a good dou­ble agent–“make your­self indis­pens­able to the effort.”

By the twist­ed ratio­nale pre­sent­ed by our media estab­lish­ment, we could come up with this: Petro Poroshenko, the cur­rent head of state of Ukraine, was Yanukovich’s finance min­is­ter, pre­sid­ing over the for­mer’s inef­fec­tive and cor­rupt gov­ern­ment. The West, includ­ing the U.S., backs Poroshenko. There­fore, the West, includ­ing the U.S.

“Secret Ledger in Ukraine Lists Cash for Don­ald Trump’s Cam­paign Chief” by Andrew E. Kramer, Mike McIn­tire and Bar­ry Meier; The New York Times; 8/14/2016. [26]

. . . . The devel­op­ments in Ukraine under­score the risky nature of the inter­na­tion­al con­sult­ing that has been a sta­ple of Mr. Manafort’s busi­ness since the 1980s, when he went to work for the Philip­pine dic­ta­tor Fer­di­nand Mar­cos. Before join­ing Mr. Trump’s cam­paign this spring, Mr. Manafort’s most promi­nent recent client was Mr. Yanukovych, who — like Mr. Mar­cos — was deposed in a pop­u­lar upris­ing. . . .

2. In our pre­vi­ous pro­gram, we pre­sent­ed a 1949  “Open Let­ter to Stal­in” pub­lished [17] in the Buerg­er Zeitung, a lead­ing Ger­man-lan­guage paper in the Unit­ed States. Note­wor­thy for our pur­pos­es here is the fact that the paper is the de-fac­to out­let for the Steuben Soci­ety, the top pan-Ger­man orga­ni­za­tion in the Unit­ed States. As will be seen below, the Steuben Soci­ety was part of the Nazi Fifth Col­umn in the U.S. before World War II and part of the Under­ground Reich infra­struc­ture in this coun­try after the war. In the lat­ter capac­i­ty, it advo­cat­ed for the release and reha­bil­i­ta­tion of Nazis, includ­ing war crim­i­nals.

Also of sig­nif­i­cance is the fact that the author, Bruno Fricke, was an asso­ciate of Otto Strass­er. Strass­er, along with his broth­er Gre­gor, was part of Ernst Rohm’s SA. Rohm was liq­ui­dat­ed in the Night of the Long Knives, along with Gre­gor Strass­er. Otto escaped to Czechoslavakia.

Tthe Buerg­er Zeitung was very anti-Com­mu­nist and strong­ly sup­port­ive of Joseph McCarthy’s witch hunts. Don­ald Trump’s lawyer for years was Roy Cohn, McCarthy’s top aide.

Waffen SS-clad World War II reenactors, in original photo used by Trump [8]

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

Three years after that let­ter was pub­lished in the Buerg­er Zeitung, the Sovi­et Union respond­ed [17] with its Sovi­et Note of 3/10/1952. One of the most impor­tant aspect of the analy­sis of this event is the Ger­man plan to achieve a unit­ed Europe under Ger­man dom­i­na­tion, which has, of course, been achieved. ” . . . In the pro-Ade­nauer press, includ­ing the The Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, Christ und Welt, The Deutsche Zeitung of Stuttgart, edi­to­ri­als have been writ­ten assur­ing the Rus­sians that Dr. Adenauer’s pol­i­cy aims to cre­ate the secu­ri­ty nec­es­sary for both the Ger­mans and the Rus­sians, and that this can only be brought about after Ger­many had become a third pow­er fac­tor which could employ its influ­ence in such a way as to deter the Unit­ed States “from start­ing a pre­ven­tive war.” [The aggres­sive U.S./NATO stance toward Ukraine and Rus­sia are impress­ing many around the world in a fash­ion that would be famil­iar to those in the ear­ly 1950’s–D.E.] Thus, while, in the short run, the Bonn Gov­ern­ment aims to cre­ate a Unit­ed Europe, it hopes ulti­mate­ly to reach a sol­id under­stand­ing with the Sovi­ets at the expense of the Unit­ed States. . . .”

This “Europa Germanica”–the EU in the event–was, in turn, to become a Third Force. In exchange for mov­ing away from the push for a Third World War and pulling Europe out of NATO, this Third Force would gain con­ces­sions from the Sovi­ets. Also of note is the fact that a major fea­ture of this Unit­ed Europe would be an all-Euro­pean army, also under Ger­man dom­i­na­tion.

” . . . The Ger­man Chancellor’s plan is that the U.S.A. is now so deeply com­mit­ted to her Euro­pean defense pledge that she will read­i­ly sac­ri­fice dozens of bil­lions of dol­lars in the strength­en­ing and the rearm­ing of a Ger­man-dom­i­nat­ed Europe. After is this accom­plished, Dr. Adenauer’s grandiose con­cept envi­sions nego­ti­a­tions with Rus­sia with the prospect of get­ting sub­stan­tial ter­ri­to­r­i­al con­ces­sions from the Krem­lin in East­ern Europe for which Ger­many in return will break away, with the whole of West­ern Europe, from the North Atlantic Treaty Orga­ni­za­tion. . . .” Trump’s pro­nounce­ments about NATO are to be seen in this con­text.

As we shall see in this broad­cast, a major push is under­way to estab­lish a “Euro-corps”–precisely the sort of Ger­man-dom­i­nat­ed Euro­pean army that was envi­sioned in the ear­ly 1950s.

” . . . . The reac­tion of the Ger­man strate­gists to the Sovi­et Note of March 10, 1952, how­ev­er, expos­es their true designs. Ger­man geo-polit­i­cal jour­nals speak of it as “the high­est trump card in the hands of the Chan­cel­lor” which will enable him to mow down the resis­tance of France against Germany’s con­cept of a unit­ed Europe. The pro-Ade­nauer press inter­pret­ed the Russ­ian Note as a tremen­dous asset in speed­ing up the timetable for the cre­ation of a Euro­pean army under Ger­man dom­i­na­tion. . . .”

3a. We learned some­thing more about Don­ald Trump’s intend­ed for­eign pol­i­cy goals: he appears to be con­sid­er­ing a US pull out of NATO. We rumi­nate about one of his for­eign pol­i­cy advi­sors, Joseph E. Schmitz, for­mer inspec­tor gen­er­al of the Depart­ment of Defense.

“Don­ald Trump’s New For­eign Pol­i­cy Advis­ers Are as Rot­ten as His Steaks” by Shane Har­ris; The Dai­ly Beast; 3/21/2016. [27]

. . . . These are the minds advis­ing Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Don­ald Trump on for­eign pol­i­cy and nation­al security.Trump, who has been pressed for months to name his coun­cil of advis­ers, revealed five in a meet­ing with the Wash­ing­ton Post edi­to­r­i­al board on Tues­day: Kei­th Kel­logg, Carter Page, George Papadopou­los, Walid Phares, and Joseph E. Schmitz. . . .

. . . . Trump revealed lit­tle about what spe­cif­ic advice they’d giv­en so far, or how any of them may have shaped Trump’s sur­pris­ing new posi­tion that the U.S. should rethink whether it needs to remain in the sev­en-decades-old NATO alliance with Europe.

Sound­ing more like a CFO than a com­man­der-in-chief, Trump said of the alliance, “We cer­tain­ly can’t afford to do this any­more,” adding, “NATO is cost­ing us a for­tune and yes, we’re pro­tect­ing Europe with NATO, but we’re spend­ing a lot of mon­ey.”

U.S. offi­cials, includ­ing for­mer Defense Sec­re­tary Robert Gates, have said that Euro­pean allies have to shoul­der a big­ger bur­den of NATO’s cost. But call­ing for the pos­si­ble U.S. with­draw­al from the treaty is a rad­i­cal depar­ture for a pres­i­den­tial candidate—even a can­di­date who has been endorsed by Russ­ian Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin.

It also wasn’t clear how Trump’s arguably anti-inter­ven­tion­ist posi­tion on the alliance squared with his choice of advis­ers.

Anoth­er Trump advis­er, Schmitz, has served in gov­ern­ment, as the Defense Depart­ment inspec­tor gen­er­al. Schmitz was brought in dur­ing the first term of Pres­i­dent George W. Bush with a man­date to reform the watch­dog office, but he even­tu­al­ly found him­self the sub­ject of scruti­ny.

“Schmitz slowed or blocked inves­ti­ga­tions of senior Bush admin­is­tra­tion offi­cials, spent tax­pay­er mon­ey on pet projects and accept­ed gifts that may have vio­lat­ed ethics guide­lines,” accord­ing to an inves­ti­ga­tion by the Los Ange­les Times in 2005. Cur­rent and for­mer col­leagues described him as “an intel­li­gent but eas­i­ly dis­tract­ed leader who seemed to obsess over details,” includ­ing the hir­ing of a speech­writer and designs for a bath­room.

Schmitz also raised eye­brows for what the paper’s sources described as his “unusu­al” fas­ci­na­tion with Baron Friedrich Von Steuben, a Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War hero who’s regard­ed as the military’s first inspec­tor gen­er­al. Schmitz report­ed­ly replaced the Defense Depart­ment IG’s seal in its office across the coun­try with a new one bear­ing the Von Steuben fam­i­ly mot­to, Sub Tutela Altissi­mi Sem­per, “under the pro­tec­tion of the Almighty always.”. . . .

3b. It’s also worth not­ing that Joseph’s broth­er, John P. Schmitz, is a lawyer who spe­cial­izes in US/German reg­u­la­to­ry issues who’s clients include Bay­er AG, Ber­tels­mann, Bosch GmbH, Deutsche Welle.

Major Ger­man cor­po­ra­tions might well ben­e­fit if the Schmitz’s once again return to influ­en­tial posi­tions in a US admin­is­tra­tion. Espe­cial­ly of Joseph ends up over­see­ing more inves­ti­ga­tions, since, as this 2005 LA Times arti­cle notes, Joseph didn’t just exhib­it an obses­sion Baron Von Steuben while serv­ing as the Defense Department’s Inspec­tor Gen­er­al. He also had an obses­sion with pre­vent­ing polit­i­cal­ly sen­si­tive inves­ti­ga­tions:

“The Scru­ti­niz­er Finds Him­self Under Scruti­ny” by T. Chris­t­ian Miller; The Los Ange­les Times; 9/25/2005. [28]

. . . . Schmitz slowed or blocked inves­ti­ga­tions of senior Bush admin­is­tra­tion offi­cials, spent tax­pay­er mon­ey on pet projects and accept­ed gifts that may have vio­lat­ed ethics guide­lines, accord­ing to inter­views with cur­rent and for­mer senior offi­cials in the inspec­tor general’s office, con­gres­sion­al inves­ti­ga­tors and a review of inter­nal e‑mail and oth­er documents.Schmitz also drew scruti­ny for his unusu­al fas­ci­na­tion with Baron Friedrich Von Steuben, a Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War hero who is con­sid­ered the military’s first true inspec­tor gen­er­al. Schmitz even replaced the offi­cial inspec­tor general’s seal in offices nation­wide with a new one bear­ing the Von Steuben fam­i­ly mot­to, accord­ing to the doc­u­ments and inter­views. . . .

. . . . His father was the ultra­con­ser­v­a­tive Orange Coun­ty con­gress­man John G. Schmitz, who once ran for pres­i­dent but whose polit­i­cal career end­ed after he admit­ted hav­ing an affair with a Ger­man immi­grant sus­pect­ed of child abuse. Schmitz’s sis­ter is Mary Kay Letourneau, the Wash­ing­ton state teacher who served more than sev­en years in prison after a 1997 con­vic­tion for rape after hav­ing sex with a sixth-grade pupil with whom she had two chil­dren. After Letourneau’s release from prison, she and the for­mer pupil, now an adult, mar­ried each oth­er.

Schmitz, who resigned on Sept. 10 to take a job with the par­ent com­pa­ny of defense con­trac­tor Black­wa­ter USA, is now the tar­get of a con­gres­sion­al inquiry and a review by the President’s Coun­cil on Integri­ty and Effi­cien­cy, the over­sight body respon­si­ble for inves­ti­gat­ing inspec­tors gen­er­al, accord­ing to the doc­u­ments and inter­views. . . .

. . . . Schmitz’s allies said he was being per­se­cut­ed. One senior Pen­ta­gon offi­cial defend­ed Schmitz by say­ing that he was con­cerned about pro­tect­ing the rep­u­ta­tion of senior offi­cials in Wash­ing­ton, where polit­i­cal ene­mies can cause trou­ble with an anony­mous hot­line tip. . . .

. . . . He paid close atten­tion, how­ev­er, to the inves­ti­ga­tions of senior Bush admin­is­tra­tion appointees. At one point, inves­ti­ga­tors even stopped telling Schmitz who was under inves­ti­ga­tion, sub­sti­tut­ing let­ter codes for the names of indi­vid­u­als dur­ing week­ly brief­in­gs for fear that Schmitz would leak the infor­ma­tion to Pen­ta­gon supe­ri­ors, accord­ing to a senior Pen­ta­gon offi­cial. “He became very involved in polit­i­cal inves­ti­ga­tions that he had no busi­ness get­ting involved in,” said anoth­er senior offi­cial in the inspec­tor general’s office. . . .

. . . . Instead, the offi­cial said that Schmitz cre­at­ed a new pol­i­cy that made it more dif­fi­cult to get infor­ma­tion by sub­poe­na by requir­ing addi­tion­al bureau­crat­ic steps. Dur­ing his tenure, Schmitz also made it hard­er to ini­ti­ate an inves­ti­ga­tion of a polit­i­cal appointee, requir­ing high-rank­ing approval before inves­ti­ga­tors could pro­ceed. . . .

. . . . Some of the more unusu­al com­plaints regard­ing Schmitz deal with what senior offi­cials called an “obses­sion” with Von Steuben, the Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War hero who worked with George Wash­ing­ton to instill dis­ci­pline in the mil­i­tary. Von Steuben report­ed­ly fled Ger­many after learn­ing that he was going to be tried for homo­sex­u­al activ­i­ties. Short­ly after tak­ing office, Schmitz made Von Steuben’s lega­cy a focus. He spent three months per­son­al­ly redesign­ing the inspec­tor general’s seal to include the Von Steuben fam­i­ly mot­to, “Always under the pro­tec­tion of the Almighty.”

He dic­tat­ed the num­ber of stars, lau­rel leaves and col­ors of the seal. He also asked for a new eagle, say­ing that the one fea­tured on the old seal “looked like a chick­en,” cur­rent and for­mer offi­cials said.

In July 2004, he escort­ed Hen­ning Von Steuben, a Ger­man jour­nal­ist and head of the Von Steuben Fam­i­ly Assn., to a U.S. Marine Corps event. He also fet­ed Von Steuben at an $800 meal alleged­ly paid for by pub­lic funds, accord­ing to Grass­ley, and hired Von Steuben’s son to work as an unpaid intern in the inspec­tor general’s office, a for­mer Defense offi­cial said.

He also called off a $200,000 trip to attend a cer­e­mo­ny at a Von Steuben stat­ue ear­li­er this year in Ger­many after Grass­ley ques­tioned it.

Final­ly, Schmitz’s son, Phillip J. Schmitz, has a busi­ness rela­tion­ship with a group tied to Von Steuben. Schmitz, who runs a tech­nol­o­gy firm, pro­vides web-host­ing ser­vices for the World Secu­ri­ty Net­work, a non­prof­it news ser­vice focused on peace and con­flict issues. Von Steuben serves on the network’s advi­so­ry board.

Huber­tus Hoff­mann, a Ger­man busi­ness­man who found­ed the net­work, said Von Steuben played no role in assign­ing the con­tract to Phillip Schmitz, who is paid a “mod­est sum” for his work. Schmitz said he first made con­tact with Hoff­mann through his father but that he had nev­er met Von Steuben.

The rela­tion­ships trou­bled many at the Pen­ta­gon.

“He was con­sumed with all things Ger­man and all things Von Steuben,” said the for­mer Defense offi­cial, who did not want to be iden­ti­fied because of the ongo­ing inquiries. “He was obsessed.” . . . .

3c. Don­ald Trump, him­self, is not stranger to the milieu of the Steuben Soci­ety:

“Don­ald Trump;”  wikipedia. [29]

. . . . Trump has said that he is proud of his Ger­man her­itage; he served as grand mar­shal [30] of the 1999 Ger­man-Amer­i­can Steuben Parade [31] in New York City.[12] [32][nb 1] [33]. . . . .

4. It’s also worth not­ing that Joseph’s broth­er, John P. Schmitz, is a lawyer who spe­cial­izes in US/German reg­u­la­to­ry issues who’s clients include Bay­er AG, Ber­tels­mann, Bosch GmbH, Deutsche Welle.

Note that, as we spoke of in FTR #476 [34],  Schmitz has a strong link with Bun­destag mem­ber Matthias Wiss­man, with whom he worked as a Bosch Foun­da­tion schol­ar. Wiss­man and Schmitz worked for Wilmer, Cut­ler and Pick­er­ing, a firm that defend­ed Ger­man and Swiss inter­ests in suits by Holo­caust sur­vivors.

“John P. Schmitz”; Schmitz Glob­al Part­ners LLP. [18]

John Schmitz rep­re­sents US and Euro­pean com­pa­nies in com­plex inter­na­tion­al trans­ac­tions and reg­u­la­to­ry mat­ters, with a focus on antitrust, media and telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, ener­gy and envi­ron­men­tal issues. He has spe­cial empha­sis on US and Ger­man polit­i­cal reg­u­la­to­ry con­cerns, and has expe­ri­ence with numer­ous high-pro­file busi­ness and reg­u­la­to­ry mat­ters involv­ing both Amer­i­can and Ger­man pub­lic pol­i­cy and legal activ­i­ties. John’s clients have includ­ed the US Cham­ber of Com­merce, Gen­er­al Elec­tric, Bay­er AG, Ber­tels­mann, Bosch GmbH, Deutsche Welle, Gillette, Pfiz­er, Microsoft, Ver­i­zon, Eli Lil­ly Co., Ford Motor Co., and Arke­ma., among oth­ers.

In Sep­tem­ber 2009, togeth­er with for­mer Ambas­sador C. Boy­den Gray, John estab­lished Gray & Schmitz LLP in Sep­tem­ber 2009 (renamed Schmitz Glob­al Part­ners LLP in 2011). In 1993, John joined May­er Brown as a part­ner to open its first Ger­man office in Berlin. From 1993 to 2009, John helped lead and devel­op a promi­nent and thriv­ing Ger­man prac­tice at May­er Brown. Before join­ing May­er Brown in 1993, John held a wide range of sig­nif­i­cant pub­lic pol­i­cy posi­tions. Between 1985 and 1993, he served as Deputy Coun­sel to George H. W. Bush in both the White House and the Office of the Vice Pres­i­dent. . . .

. . . . John has also held a num­ber of high-pro­file fel­low­ships. In Ger­many, under a Robert Bosch Foun­da­tion Fel­low­ship, he served at the Office of Bun­destag Mem­ber Matthias Wiss­mann (Bonn), and the Office of Gen­er­al Coun­sel, Robert Bosch, GmbH (Stuttgart). . . .

5. Not­ing the “bid­ding war” allud­ed to in Ger­many Plots with the Krem­lin: ” . . . He [Ade­nauer] assured his lis­ten­ers that Russia’s con­cil­ia­to­ry atti­tude was most help­ful to Germany’s aspi­ra­tions and that oth­er Russ­ian offers were to be expect­ed in which even greater con­ces­sions would be made to Ger­many, espe­cial­ly on the ter­ri­to­r­i­al ques­tion of the Oder-Neisse Line. The Chan­cel­lor hint­ed in his talks that the Sovi­et Note had cre­at­ed the heat­ed atmos­phere of an auc­tion room where two eager oppo­nents out­bid each oth­er. . . .”

We note in that regard, that Trump’s oblique­ly con­cil­ia­to­ry remarks about Putin and Ukraine are con­sis­tent with the atti­tudes of Ger­man cor­po­ra­tions, many of which would like to see the sanc­tions lift­ed, so that they may regain lost eco­nom­ic lever­age.

Ger­man cor­po­rate ele­ments, in con­cert with oth­er Euro­pean com­pa­nies, also envis­age pos­si­ble coop­er­a­tion with Rus­si­a’s Eurasian Eco­nom­ic Union. With anoth­er trans-Atlantic trade agree­ment pend­ing between the U.S. and EU/Germany, we may well be see­ing anoth­er bid­ding war between Rus­sia and the West.

Ger­man polit­i­cal and nation­al secu­ri­ty ele­ments have been pur­su­ing a hard line against Rus­sia over Ukraine, at the same time that oth­er polit­i­cal and eco­nom­ic ele­ments have pur­sued a pol­i­cy of detente.

The U.S., of course, is play­ing “bad cop” to Ger­many’s corporate/political “good cop.”

“Dis­pute over Sanc­tions on Rus­sia (II);” german-foreign-policy.com; 5/03/2016.http://www.german-foreign-policy.com/en/fulltext/58936 [22]

Ger­man busi­ness cir­cles and proxy for­eign pol­i­cy orga­ni­za­tions are cam­paign­ing to have the sanc­tions against Rus­sia lift­ed. More than two-thirds of the peo­ple in Ger­many are in favor of lift­ing sanc­tions, reports Koer­ber Foun­da­tion (Ham­burg) based on a cur­rent opin­ion poll. More than four-fifths want close coop­er­a­tion with Rus­sia, and 95 per­cent con­sid­er a rap­proche­ment in the next few years to either be “impor­tant” or “very impor­tant.” The Koer­ber Foun­da­tion, an influ­en­tial orga­ni­za­tion in the field of for­eign pol­i­cy, has, for years, been engaged in devel­op­ing coop­er­a­tion between Ger­many and Rus­sia. The hope of an ear­ly lift­ing of sanc­tions was also the sub­ject of the 4th East Forum Berlin, an eco­nom­ic forum with top-rank par­tic­i­pants, held in mid-April, at which a state sec­re­tary of the Min­istry of For­eign Affairs spoke in favor of new con­tacts between the EU and the Moscow-ini­ti­at­ed Eurasian Eco­nom­ic Union (EAEU). The objec­tive is the cre­ation of a com­mon “eco­nom­ic space from Lis­bon to Vladi­vos­tok.” The ini­tia­tives tak­en in Ger­many are being met with approval in sev­er­al EU coun­tries, includ­ing Italy and Aus­tria.

Grow­ing Dis­con­tent

Demands to aban­don the sanc­tions pol­i­cy against Moscow have been grow­ing loud­er in var­i­ous EU mem­ber coun­tries, such as Italy, for which Rus­sia is one of its most impor­tant busi­ness part­ners. Already in mid-March, the for­eign min­is­ters of Italy and Hun­gary had opposed an auto­mat­ic pro­lon­ga­tion of the sanc­tions with­out a debate. Fol­low­ing talks in Moscow in ear­ly April, the Pres­i­dent of Aus­tria, Heinz Fis­ch­er, announced he was also work­ing toward halt­ing the puni­tive measures.[1] Last week, France’s Nation­al Assem­bly passed a plea to end the sanctions.[2] Anger is also appar­ent in Greece. More­over, resis­tance is grow­ing with­in Ger­man busi­ness cir­cles, who, if the sanc­tions are soon lift­ed, hope for a new start of their busi­ness with East­ern Europe. Exports to Rus­sia have plum­met­ed from an annu­al vol­ume of 39 bil­lion Euros to less that 22 bil­lion, since 2012 alone. If sanc­tions are lift­ed, Ger­man com­pa­nies are count­ing on being able to redeem at least part of these loss­es.

From Lis­bon to Vladi­vos­tok

Sim­i­lar views were recent­ly expressed at the “East Forum Berlin,” con­vened by the Ger­man Com­mit­tee on East­ern Euro­pean Eco­nom­ic Rela­tions (OA) togeth­er with the Metro Group and Italy’s Uni­Cred­it, for the fourth time in the Ger­man cap­i­tal. More than 400 par­tic­i­pants — includ­ing the recent­ly fired Ukrain­ian Min­is­ter of Finances, Natal­ie Jaresko, and Rus­si­a’s First Deputy Min­is­ter of Eco­nom­ic Devel­op­ment, Alex­ey Likhachev — dis­cussed the devel­op­ment of an “eco­nom­ic space extend­ing from Lis­bon to Vladi­vos­tok.” In a sur­vey of 180 par­tic­i­pants of this top-rank forum, more than 80 per­cent clear­ly favored nego­ti­a­tions between the EU and the Moscow-led Eurasian Eco­nom­ic Union (EAEU) on the estab­lish­ment of a com­mon “eco­nom­ic space.”[3] They found sym­pa­thet­ic lis­ten­ers. In his “East Forum,” open­ing speech, State Sec­re­tary in Ger­many’s Min­istry of For­eign Affairs, Stephan Stein­lein, con­firmed that the Ger­man gov­ern­ment sup­ports “con­tacts between the EU and the Eurasian Eco­nom­ic Union.” “Tech­ni­cal stan­dards, trade rules, cross-bor­der infra­struc­ture and sim­pli­fied exchange pro­ce­dures” should be discussed.[4] Sanc­tions against Rus­sia was anoth­er impor­tant issue dis­cussed at the East Forum. Thir­ty five per­cent of those sur­veyed pre­dict­ed an end to the sanc­tions in the course of this year, while 27 per­cent pre­dict­ed 2017. Only slight­ly more than a third thought the sanc­tions would last longer than 2017.

A New Start Required

Last week, Ham­burg’s Koer­ber Foun­da­tion, one of Ger­many’s for­eign pol­i­cy orga­ni­za­tions, which has pro­mot­ed clos­er coop­er­a­tion between Ger­many and Rus­sia for years, took a stand. “Dia­logue and under­stand­ing” between the two coun­tries have, “for decades, been an impor­tant ele­ment of our work,” declared the foun­da­tion. Cur­rent­ly, “with its focus on ‘Rus­sia in Europe,’ the Koer­ber Foun­da­tion devotes itself to the reju­ve­na­tion of an open, crit­i­cal, and con­struc­tive dia­logue between Rus­sia and its Euro­pean neighbors.”[5] With­in this frame­work, the orga­ni­za­tion con­vokes a “Ger­man-Russ­ian Inter­na­tion­al Dia­logue” twice annu­al­ly, in which experts and politi­cians of the two coun­tries can dis­cuss “ques­tions of Euro­pean secu­ri­ty and EU-Rus­sia rela­tions in a con­fi­den­tial atmos­phere” in Moscow or Berlin.”[6] The Koer­ber Foun­da­tion reached the con­clu­sion after its most recent meet­ing, which took place Decem­ber 5, 2015 in Moscow, that “the EU-Russ­ian rela­tions require a new start.” In this sense, “future dia­logue should focus on inter­ests and explore against this back­drop the pos­si­bil­i­ties for coop­er­a­tion.” “Eco­nom­ic issues” are “an area of com­mon inter­ests that pro­vide spe­cif­ic oppor­tu­ni­ties for coop­er­a­tion.”

Desired Rap­proche­ment

To under­line its quest, the Koer­ber Foun­da­tion has just recent­ly pub­lished the results of a rep­re­sen­ta­tive sur­vey con­duct­ed on its behalf in both Ger­many and Rus­sia by TNS Infrat­est in late Feb­ru­ary and ear­ly March. The sur­vey shows that two years after esca­la­tion of the Ukrain­ian con­flict, a sig­nif­i­cant estrange­ment between the pop­u­la­tions of the two coun­tries can be noticed. 48% of the Ger­mans per­ceive Rus­sia as a “threat,” only 50% believe — emphat­i­cal­ly — that Rus­sia belongs to “Europe.” More than half of the Ger­man pop­u­la­tion con­sid­ers the EU’s pol­i­cy toward Rus­sia as “appro­pri­ate.” How­ev­er, when asked which coun­try Ger­many should work more close­ly with, 81% of those 1000 Ger­mans, par­tic­i­pat­ing in the sur­vey, opt­ed for Rus­sia — in sec­ond place behind France (89%) and far ahead of the USA (59%). In Rus­sia, 62% of the respon­dents chose Ger­many as their favorite coop­er­a­tion part­ner (ahead of Chi­na and France with 61% each). 69% of the Ger­mans favor lift­ing the sanc­tions on Rus­sia. And last­ly, 95% believe that it is “impor­tant” or “very impor­tant” that Ger­many and Rus­sia devel­op clos­er rela­tions over the next few years.[7]

The Ben­e­fit of Coop­er­a­tion

A first step toward rap­proche­ment was actu­al­ly accom­plished on April 20, with the NATO-Rus­sia Coun­cil’s first meet­ing in two years — pro­mot­ed par­tic­u­lar­ly by the Ger­man gov­ern­ment. After the meet­ing, NATO Sec­re­tary Gen­er­al Jens Stoltenberg spoke of “pro­found and per­sis­tent dis­agree­ments.” But he also con­firmed that the dia­log would be continued.[8] Berlin there­fore suc­ceed­ed in reviv­ing the dia­log between Moscow and the west­ern war alliance. At the same time, the Ger­man chan­cel­lor has announced a de fac­to per­ma­nent deploy­ment of Ger­man sol­diers — as part of a NATO bat­tal­ion — in Lithua­nia. This would be a breach of the NATO-Rus­sia Found­ing Act and would fur­ther esca­late the con­flict between the West and Russia.[9] Russ­ian protests against this deploy­ment would, more than like­ly, be eas­i­er to pla­cate with­in a NATO-Rus­sia Coun­cil than in the absence of an estab­lished frame­work for dia­log — a tac­ti­cal advan­tage for a high­ly prof­itable eco­nom­ic coop­er­a­tion.

For more infor­ma­tion on the sub­ject of sanc­tions against Russ­ian see: Dis­pute over Sanc­tions on Rus­sia (I).

[1] Rus­s­land-Sank­tio­nen: Fis­ch­er “loy­al” zu EU-Lin­ie. diepresse.com 06.04.2016.
[2] L’Assem­blée nationale demande la lev­ée des sanc­tions con­tre la Russie. www.latribune.fr 28.04.2016.
[3] 4. east forum Berlin mit Reko­rd­beteili­gung. www.ost-ausschuss.de 19.04.2016.
[4] Keynote von Staatssekretär Stephan Stein­lein bei der Eröff­nung des 4. east forum Berlin am 18.04.2016.
[5] Annäherung oder Abschot­tung? Ergeb­nisse ein­er repräsen­ta­tiv­en Umfrage von TNS Infrat­est. Ham­burg 2016.
[6] Rus­s­land und die EU: Zusam­me­nar­beit in Zeit­en der Krise. Kör­ber-Stiftung Inter­na­tionale Poli­tik, März 2016.
[7] Annäherung oder Abschot­tung? Ergeb­nisse ein­er repräsen­ta­tiv­en Umfrage von TNS Infrat­est. Ham­burg 2016.
[8] “Tief­greifende und andauernde Dif­feren­zen”. Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung 21.04.2016.
[9] See Dis­pute over Sanc­tions on Rus­sia (I).

6. At the same time that Trump is cast­ing a jaun­diced rhetor­i­cal on NATO, Ger­many and the EU are look­ing to ful­fill the devel­op­ment of a “Euro-Corps”

“The Euro­pean War Union”; german-foreign-policy.com; 6/28/2016. [21]

Togeth­er with his French coun­ter­part, the Ger­man for­eign min­is­ter has announced the EU’s trans­for­ma­tion to become a “polit­i­cal union” and its res­olute mil­i­ta­riza­tion for glob­al mil­i­tary oper­a­tions. In a joint posi­tion paper, Frank-Wal­ter Stein­meier (SPD) and Jean-Marc Ayrault (PS) are call­ing for the EU’s com­pre­hen­sive mil­i­tary buildup, based on a divi­sion of labor, to enable future glob­al mil­i­tary oper­a­tions. Fol­low­ing the Brex­it, the EU should, step-by-step, become an “inde­pen­dent” and “glob­al” actor. All forces must be mobi­lized and all “of the EU’s polit­i­cal instru­ments” must be con­sol­i­dat­ed into an “inte­grat­ed” EU for­eign and mil­i­tary pol­i­cy. Stein­meier and Ayrault are there­fore push­ing for a “Euro­pean Secu­ri­ty Com­pact,” which calls for main­tain­ing “employ­able high-readi­ness forces” and estab­lish­ing “stand­ing mar­itime forces.” The Euro­pean Coun­cil should meet once a year as “Euro­pean Secu­ri­ty Coun­cil.” Before this paper was made pub­lic, Ger­many’s for­eign min­is­ter and chan­cel­lor had made com­ments also pro­mot­ing a Ger­man glob­al pol­i­cy and mas­sive rear­ma­ment, pos­si­bly also with EU-sup­port.

The EU’s Glob­al Mis­sion

In a joint posi­tion paper prop­a­gat­ed by the Ger­man for­eign min­istry yes­ter­day, Ger­man For­eign Min­is­ter Frank-Wal­ter Stein­meier (SPD) along with his French coun­ter­part, Jean-Marc Ayrault (PS) announced steps toward a polit­i­cal union. They not­ed that Britain’s with­draw­al from the EU has cre­at­ed “a new sit­u­a­tion” with con­se­quences “for the entire EU.”[1] Berlin and Paris “firm­ly believe” that the EU pro­vides “a his­tor­i­cal­ly unique and indis­pens­able frame­work” not only for “the pur­suit of free­dom, pros­per­i­ty, and secu­ri­ty in Europe,” but also “for con­tribut­ing to peace and sta­bil­i­ty in the world.” There­fore, fur­ther steps will be made “towards a polit­i­cal union in Europe” and “oth­er Euro­pean states” are invit­ed “to join us in this endeav­or.” The EU should become “more coher­ent and more assertive on the world stage.” It is not only an actor “in its direct neigh­bor­hood” but also on “a glob­al scale.” In their paper, Stein­meier and Ayrault wrote, “on a more con­test­ed and com­pet­i­tive inter­na­tion­al scene, France and Ger­many will pro­mote the EU as an inde­pen­dent [!] and glob­al [!] actor.”

Euro­pean Secu­ri­ty Com­pact

To imple­ment the EU poli­cies of glob­al pow­er, Stein­meier and his French coun­ter­part drew up ele­ments for a “Euro­pean Secu­ri­ty Com­pact.” “Exter­nal crises” have become “more numer­ous” and have moved geo­graph­i­cal­ly “clos­er to Europe both east and south of its bor­ders.” There is no men­tion that the EU and its major pow­ers have sig­nif­i­cant­ly con­tributed to the foment­ing war and civ­il war — euphem­ized by Stein­meier and Ayrault as “crises”: In Ukraine, by seek­ing, through the Asso­ci­a­tion Agree­ment, to ful­ly inte­grate the coun­try into its sphere of hegemony;[2] in Libya, through its aggres­sion, oust­ing the Gaddafi government;[3] or in Syr­ia, through its polit­i­cal and low-inten­si­ty mil­i­tary sup­port of an increas­ing­ly jihadist-con­trolled insurgency.[4] Nev­er­the­less, the Ger­man for­eign min­is­ter and his French coun­ter­part announce that they not only sup­port “the emerg­ing gov­ern­ment of nation­al accord in Libya,” but that they are also “con­vinced that Africa needs a con­tin­u­ous com­mit­ment, being a con­ti­nent of great chal­lenges and oppor­tu­ni­ties.”

Max­i­mum of Inse­cu­ri­ty

Accord­ing to Stein­meier and Ayrault, the “Euro­pean Secu­ri­ty Com­pact” will be com­pre­hen­sive and include “all aspects of secu­ri­ty and defense dealt with at the Euro­pean lev­el.” The for­eign min­is­ters write that the EU must “ensure the secu­ri­ty of our cit­i­zens.” How­ev­er, the con­crete demands indi­cate that the “Euro­pean Secu­ri­ty Com­pact” will, of course, not bring greater secu­ri­ty, but rather the con­trary, a max­i­mum of inse­cu­ri­ty — an increase in EU-pro­voked wars and the inevitable effects, they will have on the cen­ters of Euro­pean prosperity.[5]

Every­thing for Poli­cies of Glob­al Pow­er

As a first step, the paper writ­ten by France and Ger­many’s for­eign min­is­ters pro­pos­es that “a com­mon analy­sis of our strate­gic envi­ron­ment” be made. These reviews will be reg­u­lar­ly pre­pared “by an inde­pen­dent sit­u­a­tion assess­ment capa­bil­i­ty, based on the EU intel­li­gence and sit­u­a­tion cen­tre” and sub­mit­ted and dis­cussed at the “For­eign Affairs Coun­cil and at the Euro­pean Coun­cil.” On the basis of this com­mon “under­stand­ing,” the EU should “estab­lish agreed strate­gic pri­or­i­ties for its for­eign and secu­ri­ty pol­i­cy.” It is polit­i­cal expe­ri­ence that reach­ing an “under­stand­ing” in the process of for­eign and mil­i­tary pol­i­cy stan­dard­iza­tion, the stand­point of the strongest mem­ber-state — Ger­many — will be tak­en par­tic­u­lar­ly into con­sid­er­a­tion. The results should then be “more effec­tive­ly” than ever, imple­ment­ed “as real pol­i­cy,” accord­ing to the paper. The objec­tive is an “inte­grat­ed EU for­eign and secu­ri­ty pol­i­cy bring­ing togeth­er all [!] EU pol­i­cy instru­ments.”

Arms, Arms, Arms

Stein­meier and Ayrault write in detail that to “plan and con­duct civ­il and mil­i­tary oper­a­tions more effec­tive­ly,” the EU should insti­tute a “per­ma­nent civ­il-mil­i­tary chain of com­mand.” In addi­tion, it must “be able to rely on employ­able high-readi­ness forces.” In order to “live up to the grow­ing secu­ri­ty chal­lenges,” Euro­peans need “to step up their defense efforts.” For this, the Euro­pean mem­ber states should “reaf­firm and abide by the com­mit­ments made col­lec­tive­ly on defense bud­gets and the por­tion of spend­ing ded­i­cat­ed to the pro­cure­ment of equip­ment and to research and tech­nol­o­gy (R and T).” A few days ago, Chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel had already tak­en the first step in this direc­tion, when she declared that Ger­many’s defense bud­get should now begin to con­verge with that of the Unit­ed States, in terms of their respec­tive GDP per­cent­ages — Ger­many spends 1.2 per­cent of its GDP on mil­i­tary, while the US spends 3.4 percent.[6] Next, Stein­meier and Ayrault explain that a “Euro­pean semes­ter” should sup­port the coor­di­na­tion of the indi­vid­ual mem­ber coun­tries’ future mil­i­tary plan­ning. “Syn­er­gism” is the objec­tive. Through­out the EU, an arms buildup must be as coor­di­nat­ed and effi­cient as pos­si­ble. The EU should pro­vide com­mon financ­ing for its oper­a­tions. “Mem­ber states” could estab­lish per­ma­nent struc­tured coop­er­a­tion in the field of defense “or push ahead to launch oper­a­tions.” Par­tic­u­lar­ly impor­tant is “estab­lish­ing stand­ing mar­itime forces” or acquir­ing “EU-owned capa­bil­i­ties in oth­er key areas.”

More Domes­tic Repres­sion

The Social Demo­c­rat Stein­meier and the Social­ist Ayrault write that to ensure “inter­nal secu­ri­ty,” the “oper­a­tional capac­i­ty” must be enhanced at the EU lev­el. This includes mak­ing the best use of “reten­tion of flight pas­sen­ger data (PNR)” — the “data exchange with­in the EU” must be “improved” — but also “mak­ing the best use of Europol and its coun­tert­er­ror­ism cen­tre.” “In the medi­um term,” there should oth­er­wise be the “cre­ation of a Euro­pean plat­form for intel­li­gence coop­er­a­tion.” Last week­end, SPD Chair, Sig­mar Gabriel and the Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Mar­tin Schulz (SPD) called for the exten­sion of domes­tic repres­sion as well as the cre­ation of a “Euro­pean FBI.”[7]

Seize the Oppor­tu­ni­ty

Just a few days ago, For­eign Min­is­ter Stein­meier declared in the US jour­nal “For­eign Affairs” that Ger­many has become “a major pow­er” and will “try its best” on the world stage “to hold as much ground as possible.”[8] With Britain, which had always adamant­ly opposed an inte­grat­ed EU mil­i­tary pol­i­cy, leav­ing the EU, Berlin sees an oppor­tu­ni­ty for reviv­ing its efforts at restruc­tur­ing the EU’s mil­i­tary and mobi­liz­ing as many mem­ber coun­tries as pos­si­ble for the EU’s future wars.

[1] This and the fol­low­ing quotes are tak­en from “A strong Europe in a World of Uncer­tain­ties” — Joint con­tri­bu­tion by the French For­eign Min­is­ter Jean-Marc Ayrault and Fed­er­al For­eign Min­is­ter Frank-Wal­ter Stein­meier. www.auswaertiges-amt.de.
[2] See Expan­sive Ambi­tions and Die Ver­ant­wor­tung Berlins.
[3] See Vom West­en befre­it (II).
[4] See Forced to Flee (I).
[5] Zu den Rück­wirkun­gen der von europäis­chen Staat­en geführten Kriege s. etwa Der Krieg kehrt heim, Der Krieg kehrt heim (II) and Der Krieg kehrt heim (III).
[6] See Auf Welt­macht­niveau.
[7] See Flex­i­ble Union with a Euro­pean FBI.
[8] See Auf Welt­macht­niveau.

7. The devel­op­ment of an EU “secu­ri­ty estab­lish­ment” would include the cre­ation of a Euro­pean-wide FBI. In past dis­cus­sions of L’Af­faire Snow­den, we not­ed that the EU was also work­ing toward an EU-wide equiv­a­lent of the NSA [24].

“Flex­i­ble Union with a Euro­pean FBI”; german-foreign-policy.com; 6/27/2016. [23]

Berlin is apply­ing intense pres­sure in the after­math of the Brex­it, to reor­ga­nize the EU. Under the slo­gan, “flex­i­ble Union,” ini­tial steps are being tak­en to estab­lish a “core Europe.” This would mean an EU, led by a small, tight-knit core of coun­tries, with the rest of the EU mem­ber coun­tries being sub­or­di­nat­ed to sec­ond-class sta­tus. At the same time, the Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment and Ger­many’s Min­is­ter of the Econ­o­my (both SPD) are call­ing for the com­mu­ni­ta­riza­tion of the EU’s for­eign pol­i­cy, rein­force­ment of its exter­nal bor­ders, the enhance­ment of domes­tic repres­sion and the cre­ation of a “Euro­pean FBI.” The Ger­man chan­cel­lor has invit­ed France’s pres­i­dent and Italy’s prime min­is­ter to Berlin on Mon­day to stip­u­late in advance, mea­sures to be tak­en at the EU-sum­mit on Tues­day. Ger­man media com­men­ta­tors are speak­ing in terms of the EU’s “new direc­torate” under Berlin’s lead­er­ship. At the same time, Berlin is inten­si­fy­ing pres­sure on Lon­don. The chair of the Bun­destag’s EU Com­mis­sion pre­dicts a new Scot­tish ref­er­en­dum on seces­sion and calls for Scot­land’s rapid inte­gra­tion into the EU. Ger­man politi­cians in the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment are exert­ing pres­sure for rapid­ly imple­ment­ing the Brex­it and reor­ga­niz­ing the EU. Chan­cel­lor Merkel has reit­er­at­ed her veiled threat that “rec­on­cil­i­a­tion and peace” in Europe are “any­thing but self-evi­dent,” should Euro­pean coun­tries choose to no longer be inte­grat­ed in the EU.

Core Europe

Already ear­li­er this year, Berlin had ini­ti­at­ed prepa­ra­tions for trans­form­ing the EU into a “flex­i­ble Union” and cre­at­ing a “core Europe.” On Feb­ru­ary 9, the for­eign min­is­ters of the six found­ing EU coun­tries [1] held an exclu­sive meet­ing in Rome to dis­cuss the EU’s var­i­ous cur­rent crises. This unusu­al meet­ing for­mat was also con­sid­ered to be a coun­ter­point to the Viseg­rád-Group [2], which had been par­tic­u­lar­ly crit­i­cal of Berlin’s refugee pol­i­cy. The dis­cus­sion in Rome was focused not only on the refugee pol­i­cy, but also includ­ed a pos­si­ble Brexit.[3] In their Joint Com­mu­niqué, the six for­eign min­is­ters under­lined the “dif­fer­ent paths of inte­gra­tion,” pro­vid­ed for by the Lis­bon Treaty — a hint at the option of a “flex­i­ble Union.”[4] The for­eign min­is­ters of the six found­ing coun­tries again met on Mai 20, at the Val Duchesse Cas­tle south of Brus­sels, this time explic­it­ly to dis­cuss the EU’s devel­op­ment in case of a Brex­it. They met again last Sat­ur­day to dis­cuss a paper joint­ly pre­sent­ed by the Ger­man and French for­eign min­is­ters, lit­er­al­ly demand­ing a “flex­i­ble Union.”[5] The com­mon dec­la­ra­tion, agreed upon by the six min­is­ters on Sat­ur­day, does not men­tion that polar­iz­ing term, while para­phras­ing their aspired core Europe. There is a need to “rec­og­nize” that among the mem­ber coun­tries there are “dif­fer­ent lev­els of ambi­tion towards Euro­pean integration.”[6]

The Strong Man behind Junck­er

Using this for­mat of the found­ing coun­tries, Berlin is push­ing for a “flex­i­ble Union” that is par­tic­u­lar­ly reject­ed by those mem­ber coun­tries, to be rel­e­gat­ed to sec­ond-class sta­tus. At the same time, Berlin is exert­ing pres­sure at oth­er lev­els. Already on May 23, an ini­tial offi­cial meet­ing with­in the frame­work of the EU Com­mis­sion, was held, to make arrange­ments for a pos­si­ble Brexit.[7] The invi­ta­tion had been extend­ed by the Ger­man jurist, Mar­tin Sel­mayr, Chef de Cab­i­net of Jean-Claude Junck­er, Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion. From 2001 to 2004, Sel­mayr man­aged the Ber­tels­man AG office in Brus­sels. He sub­se­quent­ly became spokesper­son and then Chef de Cab­i­net for EU Com­mis­sion­er Viviane Red­ing (Lux­em­bourg). Observers, refer­ring to his influ­ence, not­ed that some con­sid­ered Red­ing to be the “dum­my of the ven­tril­o­quist, Selmayr.”[8] Accord­ing to Ger­man media, Sel­mayr, the strong man behind Juncker,[9] had extend­ed the invi­ta­tion for the May 23 strat­e­gy meet­ing, not only to rep­re­sen­ta­tives of Slo­va­kia and Mal­ta — the two coun­tries to assume EU pres­i­den­cy in July and Jan­u­ary, respec­tive­ly, but also to Uwe Corsepius, Merkel’s Euro­pean pol­i­cy advi­sor. Corsepius is con­sid­ered one of Berlin’s most impor­tant Euro­pean pol­i­cy strategists.[10]

The New Direc­torate

Beyond such long-term agree­ments, Chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel has invit­ed France’s Pres­i­dent, François Hol­lande, Italy’s Prime Min­is­ter, Mat­teo Ren­zi and EU Coun­cil Pres­i­dent Don­ald Tusk to Berlin, Mon­day to dis­cuss the EU’s future, after Great Britain’s with­draw­al. The objec­tive is to agree upon impor­tant stip­u­la­tions pri­or to the EU’s Tues­day sum­mit — which is sim­i­lar to the 2010 — 2011 meet­ings she had held with the French pres­i­dent at the time, Nico­las Sarkozy (“Merkozy”), to set the guide­lines for the EU’s han­dling of the Euro cri­sis. Observes point to the fact that Merkel’s invit­ing Ren­zi along with Hol­lande has osten­ta­tious­ly demot­ed France’s sta­tus. Simul­ta­ne­ous­ly, Ger­man media are speak­ing in terms of the EU’s “new direc­torate.” Of course, there is no doubt that “Ger­many remains the most impor­tant EU nation, both polit­i­cal­ly as well as economically.”[11] In prac­tice, the “direc­torate” serves the func­tion — as in the pre­vi­ous cas­es of Merkel’s Sarkozy meet­ings — pri­mar­i­ly of trans­mis­sion of Ger­man spec­i­fi­ca­tions to the EU’s oth­er mem­ber coun­tries.

The Cen­tral Role

Berlin’s pre­dom­i­nance with­in the EU is being, more or less, offi­cial­ly con­firmed by the Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion, Jean-Claude Junck­er. Also in the future, Ger­many will “con­tin­ue to play a cen­tral role, if not an even more sig­nif­i­cant role, in the Euro­pean Union,” Junck­er declared.[12]

Supra­na­tion­al Repres­sion

Par­al­lel to prepa­ra­tions for the trans­for­ma­tion of the Euro­pean Union, lead­ing Ger­man Social Democ­rats are call­ing for sup­ple­men­tary steps for the polit­i­cal-eco­nom­ic stream­lin­ing the EU or its core.[13] For exam­ple, in their posi­tion paper enti­tled “Re-Found Europe,” Ger­many’s Min­is­ter of the Econ­o­my, Sig­mar Gabriel, and the Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Mar­tin Schulz, are call­ing for an expan­sion of the EU’s sin­gle mar­ket, under the top­ic an “eco­nom­ic Schen­gen.” In the process, across the board “cen­tral” job mar­ket reforms must be imple­ment­ed. The mass­es in the French pop­u­la­tion are cur­rent­ly up in arms fight­ing the impo­si­tion of these job mar­ket reforms.[14] In addi­tion, Gabriel and Schulz are call­ing on the EU to “more than ever” “act as a uni­fied gov­ern­ing force,” which would sig­ni­fy that the “com­mu­ni­ta­riza­tion” of the EU’s for­eign pol­i­cy. The imple­men­ta­tion of this com­mu­ni­ta­riza­tion, would mean Ger­many’s glob­al inter­ests being pur­sued via insti­tu­tions in Brus­sels due, to a large extent, to Berlin’s pre­dom­i­nance with­in the EU. Final­ly, the Ger­man social democ­rats are call­ing for the sys­tem­at­ic cre­ation and expan­sion of supra-nation­al struc­tures of repres­sion. For exam­ple, insti­tu­tions ward­ing off refugees from the EU must be sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly rein­forced (“effec­tive­ly secur­ing Euro­pean exter­nal bor­ders”) and coop­er­a­tion between domes­tic repres­sive author­i­ties inten­si­fied. The cre­ation, for exam­ple, of a “Euro­pean FBI” should be an objec­tive.

Project Deter­rence

To deter oth­er EU coun­tries from hold­ing ref­er­en­dums, Berlin is mas­sive­ly inten­si­fy­ing pres­sure on Lon­don. To avoid need­less dis­sention, the British gov­ern­ment seeks to con­sci­en­tious­ly pre­pare and car­ry out the nego­ti­a­tions. Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Mar­tin Schulz, declared in the form of an ulti­ma­tum, that he “expects” the British gov­ern­ment to present its with­draw­al appli­ca­tion at the EU sum­mit on Tues­day. Chair of the EPP par­lia­men­tary cau­cus, Man­fred Weber (CSU) called on Britain to with­draw “with­in the planned two-year delay, and even bet­ter, with­in a year.”[15] Brus­sels has already cre­at­ed a “Brex­it Task Force” and an “Arti­cle 50 Task Force” — the lat­ter named after the respec­tive arti­cle of the Lis­bon Treaty reg­u­lat­ing a mem­ber state’s with­draw­al from the EU. Above all, lead­ing Ger­man politi­cians are fan­ning Scot­tish seces­sion­ist plans. “The EU will con­tin­ue to con­sist of 28 mem­ber coun­tries,” declared Gun­ther Krich­baum (CDU), Chair of the EU Affairs Com­mit­tee in the Ger­man Bun­destag, “because I expect a renewed inde­pen­dence ref­er­en­dum in Scot­land, which will be suc­cess­ful this time.” Krich­baum says, “we should prompt­ly reply to this pro-EU coun­try’s mem­ber­ship application.”[16] The Ger­man media is also ener­get­i­cal­ly fir­ing on Scot­tish sep­a­ratism. Since 1945, the Fed­er­al Repub­lic of Ger­many has pos­si­bly nev­er engaged in such unabashed encour­age­ment of the dis­in­te­gra­tion of a West Euro­pean coun­try.

War in Europe

In Berlin, this is all being flanked by state­ments that can­not be oth­er­wise inter­pret­ed as oblique war threats. “Although it is dif­fi­cult for us to imag­ine,” one should “nev­er for­get” that “the idea of a unit­ed Europe, had been an idea of peace,” claims the Ger­man Chancellor.[17] The alle­ga­tion cor­re­sponds less to his­tor­i­cal reality,[18] than to the EU’s self-pro­mo­tion. Yet, Merkel declares that in Europe, “rec­on­cil­i­a­tion and peace” are both cur­rent­ly and in the future “any­thing oth­er than self-evi­dent.” The chan­cel­lor has expressed this point of view in var­i­ous EU cri­sis sit­u­a­tions. (german-foreign-policy.com reported.[19]) Accord­ing to this view, the poten­tial of Euro­pean coun­tries set­tling their dis­putes mil­i­tar­i­ly remains essen­tial­ly unal­tered and can be unleashed, should they no longer choose inte­gra­tion in a Ger­man-dom­i­nat­ed EU.

For more on this theme: The First Exit.

[1] Bun­desre­pub­lik Deutsch­land, Frankre­ich, Ital­ien, Bel­gien, Nieder­lande, Lux­em­burg.
[2] Der Viseg­rád-Gruppe gehören Polen, Tschechien, die Slowakei und Ungarn an.
[3] EU-Grün­der­staat­en: “Europäis­che Dreifachkrise” und “Her­aus­fordernde Zeit­en”. de.euronews.com 10.02.2016.
[4] Joint Com­mu­niqué. Chart­ing the way ahead. An EU Found­ing Mem­bers’ ini­tia­tive on strength­en­ing Cohe­sion in the Euro­pean Union. www.esteri.it 09.02.2016.
[5] Berlin und Paris schla­gen “flex­i­ble EU” vor. www.handelsblatt.com 24.06.2016.
[6] Gemein­same Erk­lärung der Außen­min­is­ter Bel­giens, Deutsch­lands, Frankre­ichs, Ital­iens, Lux­em­burgs und der Nieder­lande am 25. Juni 2016.
[7] EU rüstet sich für Brex­it-Ern­st­fall. www.spiegel.de 27.05.2016.
[8] Hen­drick Kaf­sack, Wern­er Mus­sler: Die EU spricht deutsch. www.faz.net 26.06.2014. See Par­tic­u­lar­ly Close to Ger­many.
[9] Hen­drick Kaf­sack: Der starke Mann hin­ter Junck­er. www.faz.net 10.09.2014.
[10] See Under the Ger­man Whip (I).
[11] Niko­las Busse: Das neue Direk­to­ri­um. Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung 25.06.2016.
[12] Junck­er sieht starke Rolle für Deutsch­land. www.handelsblatt.com 25.06.2016.
[13] Sig­mar Gabriel, Mar­tin Schulz: Europa neu grün­den. www.spd.de.
[14] See The Price of Dereg­u­la­tion.
[15] EU-Par­la­mentspräsi­dent Schulz fordert Aus­trittsantrag der Briten bis Dien­stag. www.sueddeutsche.de 25.06.2016.
[16] Jacques Schus­ter, Daniel Friedrich Sturm: Und zurück bleiben die ver­wirrten Staat­en von Europa. www.welt.de 26.06.2016.
[17] Press­es­tate­ment von Bun­deskan­z­lerin Merkel zum Aus­gang des Ref­er­en­dums über den Verbleib Großbri­tan­niens in der Europäis­chen Union am 24. Juni 2016 in Berlin.
[18] Die “Eini­gung” des europäis­chen Kon­ti­nents unter deutsch­er Dom­i­nanz gehörte bere­its zu den deutschen Kriegszie­len im Ersten Weltkrieg; damals sprach beispiel­sweise Reich­skan­zler Theobald von Beth­mann Holl­weg von der Grün­dung eines “mit­teleu­ropäis­chen Wirtschaftsver­bands”. Auch im NS-Staat wur­den entsprechende “Einigungs”-Strategien vertreten. Mehr dazu: Europas Einiger.
[19] See A Ques­tion of Peace or War in Europe, Man­age­ment with a Crow­bar and Vom Krieg in Europa.

8a. We have not­ed Trump’s real estate deal­ings in the past, and the opaque nature of his rela­tion­ships. Orga­nized crime ele­ments are one of the ele­ments for which Trump’s real estate empire appar­ent­ly “fronts.”

A New York Times inves­ti­ga­tion revealed that Ger­man cor­po­rate ele­ments are anoth­er major play­er in the com­plex Trump real estate deal­ings. The nature of the rela­tion­ships is so com­plex that not even The Times could unrav­el some of the rela­tion­ships.

Deutsche Bank and the Union Bank of Switzer­land are major Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work play­ers. The Hineberg com­pa­ny, as a dom­i­nant inter­na­tion­al ship­ping con­cern and a major Ger­man cor­po­ra­tion is almost cer­tain­ly a major Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work play­er.

“Trump’s Empire: A Maze of Debts and Opaque Ties” by Susanne Craig; The New York Times; 8/21/2016. [19]

. . . .Yet The Times’s exam­i­na­tion under­scored how much of Mr. Trump’s busi­ness remains shroud­ed in mys­tery. He has declined to dis­close his tax returns or allow an inde­pen­dent val­u­a­tion of his assets.

Ear­li­er in the cam­paign, Mr. Trump sub­mit­ted a 104-page fed­er­al finan­cial dis­clo­sure form. It said his busi­ness­es owed at least $315 mil­lion to a rel­a­tive­ly small group of lenders and list­ed ties to more than 500 lim­it­ed lia­bil­i­ty com­pa­nies. Though he answered the ques­tions, the form appears to have been designed for can­di­dates with sim­pler finances than his, and did not require dis­clo­sure of por­tions of his busi­ness activ­i­ties. . . .

. . . .The Times found three oth­er instances in which Mr. Trump had an own­er­ship inter­est in a build­ing but did not dis­close the debt asso­ci­at­ed with it. In all three cas­es, Mr. Trump had pas­sive invest­ments in lim­it­ed lia­bil­i­ty com­pa­nies that had bor­rowed sig­nif­i­cant amounts of mon­ey.

One of these invest­ments involves an office tow­er at 1290 Avenue of Amer­i­c­as, near Rock­e­feller Cen­ter. In a typ­i­cal­ly com­plex deal, loan doc­u­ments show that four lenders — Ger­man Amer­i­can Cap­i­tal, a sub­sidiary of Deutsche Bank; UBS Real Estate Secu­ri­ties; Gold­man Sachs Mort­gage Com­pa­ny; and Bank of Chi­na — agreed in Novem­ber 2012 to lend $950 mil­lion to the three com­pa­nies that own the build­ing. Those com­pa­nies, obscure­ly named HWA 1290 III LLC, HWA 1290 IV LLC and HWA 1290 V LLC, are owned by three oth­er com­pa­nies in which Mr. Trump has stakes. . . . .

. . . .At 40 Wall Street in Man­hat­tan, a lim­it­ed lia­bil­i­ty com­pa­ny, or L.L.C., con­trolled by Mr. Trump holds the ground lease — the lease for the land on which the build­ing stands. In 2015, Mr. Trump bor­rowed $160 mil­lion from Lad­der Cap­i­tal, a small New York firm, using that long-term lease as col­lat­er­al. On his finan­cial dis­clo­sure form that debt is list­ed as val­ued at more than $50 mil­lion. . . .

. . . .Trac­ing the own­er­ship of many of Mr. Trump’s build­ings can be a com­pli­cat­ed task. Some­times he owns a build­ing and the land under­neath it; some­times, he holds a par­tial inter­est or just the com­mer­cial por­tion of a prop­er­ty.

And in some cas­es, the iden­ti­ties of his busi­ness part­ners are obscured behind lim­it­ed lia­bil­i­ty com­pa­nies — rais­ing the prospect of a pres­i­dent with unknown busi­ness ties.

At 40 Wall Street, Mr. Trump does not own even a sliv­er of the actu­al land; his long-term ground lease gives him the right to improve and man­age the build­ing. The land is owned by two lim­it­ed lia­bil­i­ty com­pa­nies; Mr. Trump pays the two enti­ties a total of $1.6 mil­lion a year for the ground lease, accord­ing to doc­u­ments filed with the S.E.C.

The major­i­ty own­er, 40 Wall Street Hold­ings Cor­po­ra­tion, owns 80 per­cent of the land; New Scan­dic Wall Lim­it­ed Part­ner­ship owns the rest, accord­ing to pub­lic doc­u­ments. New Scan­dic Wall Lim­it­ed Partnership’s chief exec­u­tive is Joachim Fer­di­nand von Grumme-Dou­glas, a busi­ness­man based in Europe, accord­ing to these doc­u­ments.

The peo­ple behind 40 Wall Street Hold­ings are hard­er to iden­ti­fy. For years, Germany’s Hin­neberg fam­i­ly, which made its for­tune in the ship­ping indus­try, con­trolled the prop­er­ty through a com­pa­ny called 40 Wall Lim­it­ed Part­ner­ship. In late 2014, their inter­est in the land was trans­ferred to a new com­pa­ny, 40 Wall Street Hold­ings. The Times was not able to iden­ti­fy the own­er or own­ers of this com­pa­ny, and the Trump Orga­ni­za­tion declined to com­ment. . . .

8b. In con­nec­tion both with Trump’s real estate hold­ings and John P. Schmitz’s cor­po­rate work, we review the con­trol of Ger­man indus­try and finance by the Bor­mann net­work.

Mar­tin Bor­mann: Nazi in Exile by Paul Man­ning; Copy­right 1981 by Paul Man­ning; Lyle Stu­art Inc. [HC]; ISBN 0–8184-0309‑B; pp. 284–285. [15]

. . . Atop an orga­ni­za­tion­al pyra­mid that dom­i­nates the indus­try of West Ger­many through banks, vot­ing rights enjoyed by major­i­ty share­hold­ers in sig­nif­i­cant car­tels, and the pro­fes­sion­al input of a rel­a­tive­ly young lead­er­ship group of lawyers, invest­ment spe­cial­ists, bankers, and indus­tri­al­ists, he [Bor­mann] is sat­is­fied that he achieved his aim of help­ing the Father­land back on its feet. To ensure con­ti­nu­ity of pur­pose and direc­tion, a close watch is main­tained on the prof­it state­ments and man­age­ment reports of cor­po­ra­tions under its con­trol else­where. This lead­er­ship group of twen­ty, which is in fact a board of direc­tors, is chaired by Bor­mann, but pow­er has shift­ed to the younger men who will car­ry on the ini­tia­tive that grew from that his­toric meet­ing in Stras­bourg on August 10, 1944. Old Hein­rich Mueller, chief of secu­ri­ty for the NSDAP in South Amer­i­ca, is the most feared of all, hav­ing the pow­er of life and death over those deemed not to be act­ing in the best inter­ests of the orga­ni­za­tion. Some still envi­sion a Fourth Reich. . . What will not pass is the eco­nom­ic influ­ences of the Bor­mann orga­ni­za­tion, whose com­mer­cial direc­tives are obeyed almost with­out ques­tion by the high­est ech­e­lons of West Ger­man finance and indus­try. ‘All orders come from the share­hold­ers in South Amer­i­ca,’ I have been told by a spokesman for Mar­tin Bor­mann. . . . 

9. Com­ing on the heels of the Trump campaign’s lat­est pub­lic embrace of the “Alt Right”, news that one of Trump’s advi­sors has been accused of enthu­si­as­ti­cal­ly fir­ing Jews and Holo­caust denial­ism while he was the DoD’s Inspec­tor Gen­er­al almost qual­i­fies as ‘dog bites man’ news at this point. Still, it’s news. Very omi­nous ‘dog bites man’ news:

“Trump Advis­er Accused of Mak­ing Anti-Semit­ic Remarks” by Marisa Tay­lor and William Dou­glas; McClatchy News Bureau; 8/18/2016. [25]

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).

Schmitz said that Crane was the source of oth­er false accu­sa­tions against him.

“The alle­ga­tions are com­plete­ly false and defam­a­to­ry,” Schmitz said in an inter­view Tues­day.

“I do not recall ever even hear­ing of any ‘alle­ga­tions of anti-Semi­tism against [me],’ which would be pre­pos­ter­ous­ly false and defam­a­to­ry because, among oth­er reason(s), I am quite proud of the Jew­ish her­itage of my wife of 38 years,” he wrote in an email.

Lat­er in a phone inter­view, he said his wife was not a prac­tic­ing Jew but “eth­ni­cal­ly Jew­ish” because her mater­nal grand­moth­er was a Jew.

Mey­er, who pre­vi­ous­ly over­saw the Defense Department’s deci­sions on whistle­blow­ing cas­es, said he could not com­ment because his case is still pend­ing. Mey­er is now the Oba­ma administration’s top offi­cial over­see­ing how intel­li­gence agen­cies han­dle whistle­blow­er com­plaints.

Crane would not com­ment direct­ly about his con­ver­sa­tion with Schmitz but said, “if, when, I am required to tes­ti­fy under oath in a MSPB hear­ing, I would then com­ment on the state­ment attrib­uted to me by Mr. Mey­er.”

“State­ments made under oath at the request of a judge in a for­mal pro­ceed­ing would also remove my vul­ner­a­bil­i­ty to any poten­tial civ­il lit­i­ga­tion by any par­ty involved in the fil­ings by Mr. Mey­er,” he added.

Crane’s lawyer, Andrew Bakaj, also refut­ed Schmitz’s charges about Crane. He said Crane “has had no asso­ci­a­tion or involve­ment with any of the numer­ous news accounts chal­leng­ing the actions or deci­sions made by Mr. Schmitz when he was Inspec­tor Gen­er­al.”

The anti-Semit­ic alle­ga­tions have also become part of anoth­er case.

David Tenen­baum, an Army engi­neer at the Tank Auto­mo­tive Com­mand (TACOM) in War­ren, Michi­gan, is now cit­ing the alle­ga­tions in a let­ter this week to Act­ing Pen­ta­gon Inspec­tor Gen­er­al Glenn Fine as new evi­dence that cur­rent and for­mer Pen­ta­gon offi­cials helped per­pe­trate an anti-Semit­ic cul­ture with­in the mil­i­tary that left him vul­ner­a­ble.

“The anti-Semit­ic envi­ron­ment began under a pri­or Inspec­tor Gen­er­al, Mr. Joseph Schmitz,” the let­ter from Tenenbaum’s lawyer May­er Mor­gan­roth of Birm­ing­ham, Mich., states.

Trump’s cam­paign did not return mul­ti­ple calls and emails over a week about Schmitz.

The alle­ga­tions against Schmitz are in Meyer’s employ­ment griev­ance that was filed in June with the MSPB, which decides such cas­es filed by fed­er­al employ­ees. In the com­plaint, Mey­er alleges for­mer and cur­rent Defense Depart­ment Inspec­tor Gen­er­al offi­cials dis­crim­i­nat­ed against him as a gay man and retal­i­at­ed against him for inves­ti­gat­ing and report­ing mis­con­duct by high-lev­el Pen­ta­gon offi­cials.

Crane, a for­mer assis­tant Defense Depart­ment inspec­tor gen­er­al, resigned in 2013 when he learned he was going to be fired after an admin­is­tra­tive inquiry. He filed a whistle­blow­er dis­clo­sure say­ing retal­i­a­tion had forced his res­ig­na­tion. The dis­clo­sure is still before the Office of Spe­cial Coun­sel, which inves­ti­gates such com­plaints.

The let­ter from Tenenbaum’s lawyer May­er Mor­gan­roth also alleges Schmitz made remarks about fir­ing Jews and play­ing down the extent of the Holo­caust, cit­ing a “sworn state­ment” from an unnamed source with knowl­edge of the Tenen­baum case.

A fed­er­al offi­cial with knowl­edge of the mat­ter told McClatchy that Crane tes­ti­fied, under oath, about anti-Semit­ic remarks Schmitz made to him. Crane was inter­viewed in at least two inves­ti­ga­tions involv­ing Pen­ta­gon inspec­tor gen­er­al offi­cials.

Schmitz was accused of shield­ing Bush admin­is­tra­tion offi­cials from inves­ti­ga­tions, includ­ing an inquiry into a Boe­ing con­tract. He was cleared of the alle­ga­tions.

Schmitz left the gov­ern­ment to become gen­er­al coun­sel of the par­ent com­pa­ny of the defense con­trac­tor then known as Black­wa­ter.

A fel­low Repub­li­can, Sen. Chuck Grass­ley of Iowa, was one of Schmitz’s biggest crit­ics.

Grass­ley, for exam­ple, com­plained to the Pen­ta­gon about Schmitz’s plans to send Pen­ta­gon offi­cials to an event in Ger­many hon­or­ing Baron Friedrich Von Steuben, a Pruss­ian-born Army offi­cer who served under George Wash­ing­ton dur­ing the Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War.

Schmitz, who speaks Ger­man, was described as fas­ci­nat­ed with Von Steuben, who was known as the nation’s first U.S. inspec­tor gen­er­al.

Schmitz’s father, the late Repub­li­can Con­gress­man John Schmitz who rep­re­sent­ed Cal­i­for­nia, was a fer­vent anti-Com­mu­nist and drew crit­i­cism in 1981 for remarks about Jews, includ­ing his press release that called the audi­ence at abor­tion hear­ings “a sea of hard, Jew­ish and (arguably) female faces.”

Bart Buech­n­er, Joseph Schmitz’s for­mer mil­i­tary assis­tant at the inspec­tor general’s office, said he had fre­quent con­tact with Schmitz and nev­er wit­nessed any anti-Semi­tism.

“He would not say any­thing neg­a­tive or pejo­ra­tive about any eth­nic group,” Buech­n­er said.

For­mer Inte­ri­or Depart­ment Inspec­tor Gen­er­al Earl Devaney, who served dur­ing the Clin­ton, Bush and Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tions, said he was sur­prised to hear Trump picked Schmitz as his advis­er.

“I was shocked,” Devaney said. “In fact, a bunch of us for­mer inspec­tors gen­er­al called each oth­er when we saw the news, and we couldn’t stop laugh­ing because it was so ridicu­lous that some­one so odd and out of the main­stream would be select­ed, par­tic­u­lar­ly for that posi­tion.”

Tenen­baum, who is alleg­ing offi­cials in the Pen­ta­gon inspec­tor general’s office con­tributed to anti-Semi­tism against him, was tar­get­ed as an Israeli spy by the Army, which launched a crim­i­nal inves­ti­ga­tion of him.

Brid­get Ser­chak, a Pen­ta­gon inspec­tor general’s office spokes­woman, declined to com­ment on the case. Her office con­clud­ed in 2008 that Tenen­baum had been sin­gled out for “unusu­al and unwel­come scruti­ny because of his faith” as an Ortho­dox Jew.

His treat­ment from 1992 to 1997, the inspec­tor general’s report con­clud­ed, amount­ed to dis­crim­i­na­tion.

Tenen­baum got his secu­ri­ty clear­ance back and it was even increased to top secret. He was nev­er charged with any wrong­do­ing. In his let­ter this week to Pen­ta­gon author­i­ties, he asked the inspec­tor gen­er­al to review his case because he said the office nev­er inter­vened on his behalf.

“… In light of the infor­ma­tion recent­ly obtained, (we) believe your office has and con­tin­ues to engage in dis­crim­i­na­to­ry behav­ior,” his lawyer wrote.

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.”