The German car company BMW has threatened its workforce in Britain that “although leaving the EU was a matter for the British voter” actually leaving would affect the company’s “British work base”. The email to staff added: “Tariff barriers would mean higher costs and higher prices and we cannot assume that the UK would be granted free trade with Europe from outside the EU.” Given the enormous German (and EU) trade surplus with the UK there would of course be no threat at all if Britain left since the EU and German car makers in particular would be decimated by any loss of UK trade.
This thinly veiled and disgraceful threat by BMW to its workers and to Britain if we vote to restore our democratic self governance must surely lead to the cancellation by all patriots of any orders for BMW cars.
This arrogance and anti British attitude by BMW is nothing new as the company has for years been dominated by its founding family the Quandts who in the 1930s and 40s were especially close to the Nazi regime, contributing to Hitler’s personal election fund.
The company was at the 1944 Red House meeting in Strasbourg with the SS to plan post war Nazism with the help of German companies. Harald Quandt who with his half brother Herbert founded BMW was the son of Magda Goebbels (Josef Goebbels, Hitler’s Propaganda Chief) by her first marriage to Guenther Quandt. Guenther Quant married Magda in 1931 with Adolf Hitler as best man.
During the war Hitler gave Quandt the title of “Wehrwirtschaftsfuehrer” (Leader in the War Economy) and he certainly lived up to the title supplying ammunition, rifles and using slave labourers from concentration camps.
Magda Goebbels was not just married to Josef Goebbels she was a fanatical Hitler supporter herself and wrote in 1945 (just before she and her husband murdered their children and committed suicide) to her son Harald:
“My dear son! By now we’ve been in the Fuehrerbunker for six days already, Daddy, your six little siblings and I, will give our national socialistic lives the only possible, honourable ending,”
The major shareholders in BMW today are therefore Goebbels’ step grandchildren and the direct descendant of Magda Goebbels, a Nazi so fanatical that she killed her own children by Goebbels (in Hitler’s Bunker) rather than let them grow up in a non Nazi Germany.
(NaturalNews) It is altogether fitting that Monsanto, the world's most evil corporate monster, is now going to be acquired by Bayer, the Nazi-era war crimes chemical company that committed crimes against humanity. The price of this demonic acquisition that will spell doom for humanity? A mere $66 billion.
"German drug and crop chemical maker Bayer clinched a $66 billion takeover of U.S. seeds company Monsanto on Wednesday," reports Reuters. "If the deal closes, it will create a company commanding more than a quarter of the combined world market for seeds and pesticides in the fast-consolidating farm supplies industry."
Reuters goes on to explain, "What the newly-formed company would be named is unclear."
The combined name, of course, should be "MonSatanFarben" because Bayer is an offshoot of Interessengemeinschaft Farben, the Nazi-era chemical company that worked with Adolf Hitler to develop and deploy deadly chemical weapons against humanity.
Via the IG Farben page on Truthwiki:
September of 1939: Germany invades Poland and within two days, France and Britain declare war on Germany. Hitler seized Norway and Denmark for the naval war against British trade supplies from America. Hitler had a war plan like no other in history, and it involved using chemicals against the enemy, even in the war camps. So how did Hitler gain SO MUCH POWER so fast? [By deploying a] cyanide-based pesticide that was invented in the early 1920s in Germany, best known as Zyklon B, and was being used by Nazi Germany to murder over ONE MILLION PEOPLE in gas chambers that Hitler's engineers and architects installed at Auschwitz death camp, the slaughtering headquarter and largest of all the other extermination camps.
In waging World War II, Hitler and the Nazi regime hoped to control the world by force. Today, Monsanto and Bayer have learned that controlling the world by controlling the food supply is far easier in comparison (and relatively few people resist... go figure).
Now, with the Bayer acquisition of Monsanto a near certainty, we can get ready for the obvious next step for humanity's downfall...
Bayer -- MonSatanFarben -- will weaponize control of the food supply to control humanity
The next step in all this is rather obvious. With control over one-quarter of the world's seed supply, MonSatanFarben (Bayer) will very sooner or later exploit its domineering control over the food supply as a means to control entire nations.
Even before that happens, Bayer will be poisoning most of humanity with glyphosate herbicide (RoundUp), which now inundates much of the food supply.
It seems that Bayer's desire to use chemicals to commit crimes against humanity never really ended with the Nazis. Now, with its acquisition of Monsanto, Bayer is revisiting that dark, demonic history and hoping to wield modern agricultural chemical weapons against all those who once escaped the Zyklon B gas chambers of the Nazi era.
Except this time, they're not just coming for the Jews. They're waging indiscriminate depopulation and hoping to cause widespread infertility, cancer and early death across the entire human population.
Bayer's $66bn takeover bid of Monsanto called a 'marriage made in hell'
Vermont senator Bernie Sanders leads outcry over merger, saying deal is ‘a threat to all Americans’ and should be blocked by regulators
Bayer headquarters in Germany
Rupert Neate in New York
Wednesday 14 September 2016 21.19
German chemical giant Bayer’s $66bn (£50bn) deal to buy controversial US agrochemical giant Monsanto and create the world’s largest seeds and pesticides company is “a threat to all Americans” and should be blocked, Bernie Sanders said on Wednesday.
Speaking shortly after the deal was announced, the Vermont senator, who ran against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination, said: “The attempted takeover of Monsanto by Bayer is a threat to all Americans.”
“These mergers boost the profits of huge corporations and leave Americans paying even higher prices. Not only should this merger be blocked, but the Department of Justice should reopen its investigation of Monsanto’s monopoly over the seed and chemical market.”
He called for the proposed takeover to be blocked and for a fresh investigation into Monsanto’s current control of the seed market.
The proposed deal, the biggest corporate takeover deal so far this year, follows a wave of consolidation in the seeds and agriculture industry and has raised concerns among politicians, scientists, regulators, farmers and activists who called the deal a “marriage made in hell”.
Bayer raises Monsanto cash takeover offer to $65bn
Werner Baumann, chief executive of Bayer, which is most famous for developing aspirin, said “the combination of our two great organizations [will] deliver substantial value to shareholders, our customers, employees and society at large”.
But farmers and environmentalists warned the deal could lead to a reduction in seed variety, an increase in genetically modified crops and higher seed costs and therefore crop and food prices.
The proposed takeover is likely to face intense regulatory scrutiny in the US and Europe, particularly as it quickly follows two other mega-deals in the agriculture industry and would leave control of almost two-thirds of the world’s seeds and pesticides in the hands of three firms.
Analysts at Bernstein Research said they thought there was only a 50:50 chance of the deal winning regulatory clearance. “We believe political pushback to this deal, ranging from farmer dissatisfaction with all their suppliers consolidating in the face of low farm net incomes to dissatisfaction with Monsanto leaving the United States, could provide significant delays and complications,” they said in a research note. Because of the difficulties expected in getting the deal through, Bayer has agreed to pay Monsanto $2bn if the tie-up falls apart because of competition concerns.
Friends of the Earth described the takeover, which will see Bayer pay $128 per share – a 44% premium on Monsanto’s share price before the proposed deal was first revealed in May, as a “marriage made in hell”.
— Adrian Bebb (@AdrianBebb)
September 14, 2016
Bayer-Monsanto takeover a 'marriage made in hell'. #glyphosate #GMO #neonics #bees https://t.co/dIb6QIySFm pic.twitter.com/JSe05H0kTw
Adrian Bebb, Friends of the Earth’s food and farming campaigner, said the proposed takeover “threatens to further lock in industrialised agriculture at the expense of nature, farmers and the wider public” and warned that “this mega corporation will be doing its best to force damaging pesticides and GM seeds into our countryside”.
Campaigners promised further protests, which have already been held around the world since Bayer made its first approach for Monsanto in May.
They are concerned that the deal could lead to Monsanto, which has been described as “the most evil company in the world” for its role in developing deadly herbicide Agent Orange in the 1960s and more recently its role at the forefront of genetically engineered crops, could introduce GMO seeds in Europe.
Hugh Grant, Monsanto’s Scottish chief executive, hit out at environmentalists saying their concern about GM crops “drives me a little bit nuts” and said they should be more worried about how to feed a fast-growing global population while using less water as global temperatures rise.
“You think about two billion new citizens, you think about a warming planet. You think about water. These are appropriate conversations,” he said in an interview with CNN on Wednesday. “The thing that drives me a little bit nuts. The frustrating piece is this is such a polarized debate. And I don’t think it should be because we’re going to need all these kinds of agriculture.”
John Colley, professor of international business at Warwick Business School said: “Bayer’s acquisition of ‘Frankenstein’ crop producer Monsanto could be a horror story for both Bayer and its customers: the farmers.”
“Apart from Monsanto’s shareholders, who have hit the jackpot, this looks like a lose-lose bid. Bayer have been forced into paying too much and face major integration and competition authority risks.
“The farmers will lose out as product ranges are rationalised and attempts are made to increase prices.”
Bayer’s shares were up 1.3% to €105.60 in afternoon trading in Frankfurt, and Monsanto shares were 1.1% higher at $107.20 in New York. _________________ --
'Suppression of truth, human spirit and the holy chord of justice never works long-term. Something the suppressors never get.' David Southwell
Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
Martin Van Creveld: I'll quote Henry Kissinger: "In campaigns like this the antiterror forces lose, because they don't win, and the rebels win by not losing."
If you had told someone a few decades ago that by 2016 the company that brought aspirin to the world and the company that brought Agent Orange to Vietnam were going to team up to control a quarter of the world's food supply, chances are you would have been labeled a loony.
Unless your name was Robert B. Shapiro. He was CEO of Monsanto from 1995 to 2000, and in 1999 he told Business Week that the company's goal was to wed "three of the largest industries in the world--agriculture, food and health--that now operate as separate businesses. But there are a set of changes that will lead to their integration."
With this week's announcement that Bayer had finally succeeded in its quest to acquire Monsanto, it is hard to deny that Shapiro's vision has been realized. Too bad for all of us that that vision is a nightmare.
The Bayer-Monsanto merger (as James Evan Pilato and I discussed on this week's New World Next Week) is turning heads, and rightfully so. Clocking in at $66 billion, or $128 per share, it is the largest cash takeover bid in history. It also combines Bayer and Monsanto's shares of the world seed market (3% and 26% respectively) and their share of the agrochemical market (15% and 8% respectively) with Bayer's pharmaceutical division to create the single largest player in Shapiro's quickly-materializing "agriculture/food/health" industry.
But Bayer and Monsanto are not the only ones playing this game. Major competitors DuPont and Dow are in the midst of a merger that is expected to create a $130 billion behemoth when the dust settles. China National Chemical Corp.'s $43 billion takeover bid for seed giant Syngenta AG was approved by US regulators last month. And just like that, the number of companies presiding over the global supply of (increasingly genetically modified) seeds and agrochemicals is about to be cut in half.
But in fact, as I explained in "How Big Oil Conquered the World," even the current agrochemical industry has to be seen in its historical context as a fusion of the petrochemical fertilizer giants (Dupont, Dow, Hercules Powder and other businesses in the Standard Oil orbit) with the “ABCD” seed cartel of Archer Daniels Midand, Bunge, Cargill and Louis Dreyfus. These previously separate fields were gradually consolidated under the flag of "agribusiness," itself developed at Harvard Business School in the 1950s with the help of research conducted by Wassily Leontief for the Rockefeller Foundation.
Then with the advancement of GMO technology in the 1980s and 1990s (again with considerable help from the Rockefellers and other oiligarchical interests), new opportunities for consolidation presented themselves. Seeds used to be sold by seed companies, and fertilizers and herbicides used to be sold by chemical companies. But then the GMO "revolution" came along and all of these companies spun off "biotech" branches to genetically engineer seeds. That in turn opened up opportunities to create GMO seed strains that are tailored to work with patented herbicides and fertilizers. The combination of GMO seeds and specially tailored agrochemicals has been especially lucrative for the companies at the top of this food chain (pardon the pun), and Monsanto was the first to capitalize on those synergies, winning regulatory approval for its first Roundup Ready soybeans in 1994.
The goal of this latest round of biotech/seed/agrochemical mergers, like the agribusiness consolidation before it, is two-fold: to increase market share, cut overhead, and increase profits; and to put control of the world's food supply in the hands of a very few globalist insiders.
Control of the global food supply is, needless to say, (along with control of money and oil) the pillars upon which the globalist oligarchs perch. Although there is no proof whatsoever that he said it, the dubious quote sometimes attributed to Henry Kissinger is nonetheless quite true: "Who controls the food supply controls the people; who controls the energy can control whole continents; who controls money can control the world."
Particularly frightening, then (though hardly surprising), that this latest round of consolidation is being spearheaded by two corporations as thoroughly deplorable as Bayer and Monsanto.
Bayer: One of the pieces of I.G. Farben's grim (and oiligarchical) legacy; supplier of chemicals for the poison gas attacks of WWI; knowing seller of HIV-contaminated vaccines; mass murderer of bees; seller of tainted GMO crops.
And Monsanto: dumper of toxic chemicals; proud seller of carcinogens; suer of farmers; cause of farmer suicides; suppressor of scientific dissent.
Are you feeling safe knowing that a quarter of the world's food supply will soon be in their combined hands?
Well, perhaps there's a ray of hope here. The Wall Street Journal posits that these latest mergers are actually a defensive reaction to negative market pressures, not the fulfillment of the companies' (admitted) long-term plans. According to the Journal:
"[...]farmers are finding it harder to justify the high and often rising prices for modified, or GMO, seed, given the measly returns of the current farm economy. Spending on crop seeds has nearly quadrupled since 1996, when Monsanto Co. became the first of the companies to launch biotech varieties. Yet major crop prices have skidded lower for three years, and this year, many farmers stand to lose money."
The report goes on to suggest that these increasing prices, combined with the emergence of increasingly-resistant weeds, are leading a growing number of farmers back to non-GMO seeds.
Whether this is part of a rising trend of farmers abandoning the GMO monstrosities for their cheaper organic alternatives or not, one thing is clear: Consumers who are concerned about these GMO crops and the consolidation of the food supply itself have their own responsibility in reducing their consumption of these products. While a complete boycott of the nearly-ubiquitous (in the US) GMO soybean and GMO corn would be almost impossible at this point, consumers still can make their presence felt by using the Non-GMO Project or similar resources to buy GMO-free products.
The alternative is that Robert B. Shapiro's dream of a consolidated food-health-agriculture industry comes true and we all live through the nightmare of that much power being put in the hands of the very few.
To learn about these topics and more, subscribe To The International Forecaster
Stay with us for reports twice weekly on current news on economics, politics, metals, and business. Subscribe today _________________ --
'Suppression of truth, human spirit and the holy chord of justice never works long-term. Something the suppressors never get.' David Southwell
Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
Martin Van Creveld: I'll quote Henry Kissinger: "In campaigns like this the antiterror forces lose, because they don't win, and the rebels win by not losing."
By Kara O'Neill
11:29, 9 NOV 2017UPDATED14:53, 9 NOV 2017
A Nazi holiday camp built by Adolf Hitler before World War II broke out has been turned into a luxury resort - boasting apartments worth more than £500,000.
The Prora resort on Rugen, a German island in the Baltic Sea, had been left abandoned for decades after building work was halted in 1939.
It was meant to be the Nazi leader's 'dream resort' but ended up being left as a drab, concrete shell, stretching three miles along the coast.
It never opened its doors to guests and was later taken over by development company Prora Solitaire.
Now, the site has been completely transformed, with plush apartments and huge swimming pools.
All the flats boast their own private balconies, and the area around the hotel has been completely landscaped to leave a beautiful view of the public gardens and white, sandy beach.
The holiday camp never welcomed any guests as development had to be abandoned in 1939 (Image: Daily Mirror)
Hitler inspecting plans and model of his holiday camp (Image: Daily Mirror)
The huge resort stretches three miles along the coast (Image: Getty Images Europe)
Each balcony provides a beautiful outdoor space (Image: Caters)
A sea-view penthouse will set you back more than £500,000 (Image: Caters)
'We were all ready to die': Kamikaze pilot reveals the fear and fanaticism of suicide squads
The apartments have been snapped up quickly by buyers, but a few are still available for £500,000.
In Hitler's vision , eight holidaymakers would have been crammed into each apartment, but now the blocks boast spacious, open-plan rooms with plenty of private outside space.
It was intended to be a respite camp for over 20,000 Third Reich workers who would be able to benefit from a few days in the fresh air.
Sessions in Nazi ideology would also be held to keep holidaymakers entertained - and indoctrinated.
German children were evacuated to the unfinished camp (Image: Daily Mirror)
The hotel also boasts a museum and a youth centre (Image: Caters)
The new resort undergoing development (Image: Getty Images Europe)
Visitors in the lobby of the luxury holiday resort (Image: Getty Images Europe)
Each apartment was originally intended for eight people (Image: Getty Images Europe)
The day it was nearly all over for Kenneth Wolstenholme revealed when his RAF plane was hit by Germans
After the war, most of the building were destroyed under East German communist control while ome were used as Cold War barracks.
Historian Katja Lucke, the manager of a museum on the island, said: "This is a place where 20,000 people were to be groomed to work and wage war."
But it is hoped that, despite the building's past, it will be allowed a fresh start.
A spokesman for Prora said: "The past is the past. Prora may have been built by the Nazis, but it was never used by them or their soldiers.
"Now the place is so lovely, visitors want to get back to nature and enjoy its beauty."
It was left abandoned for decades after World War II (Image: Caters)
Many of the apartments have now been snapped up (Image: Getty Images Europe)
Each apartment comes with its own private balcony (Image: Getty Images Europe)
People hope that the resort won't be plagued by its history (Image: Getty Images Europe)
The final plan for the entrance to the resort (Image: Caters)
CIA told Adolf Hitler 'alive and living under new identity' in Colombia in 1955
Eight apartment blocks are ready to go, with three more planned to complete the sprawling resort.
Prices for the holiday homes have ranged from £297,000 to more than £550,000 if you want to bag yourself a sea-view penthouse.
And because the building is considered historic, German tax payers can claim tax breaks on their purchases.
Long before Dieselgate, there were slave workers, slush funds and sex on expenses. Now the company has been exposed for gassing monkeys. Tony Allen-Mills examines the German giant’s ethical void
February 4 2018, 12:01am, The Sunday Times
At about the time that a global sales push by Volkswagen was threatening to dethrone Toyota as the world’s leading car maker in 2014, Jonathan Leake, then the environment correspondent of The Sunday Times, was struggling to solve a puzzle that no one in the industry seemed able to explain.
VW and other German manufacturers had built much of their sales success on the development of “clean” diesel engines that were not only smoother and cheap to run but were supposedly much kinder to the environment than the clunky, foul-smelling diesels of old.
So why was it, Leake wrote to a Brussels-based environmental lobbyist, that air pollution from diesel-fuelled vehicles was getting worse in European cities despite the introduction of rigorous new emission standards? The…
Hitler opens the VW factory in Fallersleben in 1938. Now called Wolfsburg, it is home to VW’s headquarters HUGO JAEGER
"The Quandt family is the silent might, behind one of the world's largest and most profitable automakers, BMW. Yet the family has a dark past. Its businesses profited from forced labour during the Third Reich, and the patriarchs, who were intimately involved with the Nazi regime, managed to escape prosecution and keep those profits when the war ended, profits with which they could buy and rescue BMW. This documentary shows the victims, and asks the question, "Why are the Quandts silent?"
[...].--Description by Youtube-user originalrhombus, who added: "Thank you to all those who appreciate just how time-consuming and arduous it was for me to translate and subtitle this documentary".
Nazi propaganda minister’s heirs own nearly 50% of BMW; Study: Quandt family fortune partially built by concentration camp labor.
BY JPOST.COM STAFF AUGUST 27, 2017 16:42
In the spring of 1945, Harald Quandt, a 23-year-old officer in the German Luftwaffe, was being held as a prisoner of war by Allied forces in the Libyan port city of Benghazi when he received a farewell letter from his mother, Magda Goebbels – the wife of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels.
The hand-written note confirmed the devastating news he had heard weeks earlier: his mother had committed suicide with her husband on May 1, after slipping their six children cyanide capsules in Adolf Hitler’s underground bunker in Berlin.
“My dear son! By now we’ve been in the Fuehrerbunker for six days already, Daddy, your six little siblings and I, to give our national socialistic lives the only possible, honorable ending,” she wrote. “Harald, dear son, I want to give you what I learned in life: Be loyal! Loyal to yourself, loyal to the people and loyal to your country!”
Quandt was released from captivity in 1947. Seven years later, he and his half-brother Herbert – Harald was the only remaining child from Magda Goebbels‚ first marriage – would inherit the industrial empire built by their father, Guenther Quandt.
The brothers took the business, which had produced Mauser firearms and anti-aircraft missiles for the Third Reich’s war machine. Their most valuable assets became stakes in car manufacturers Bayerische Motoren Werke AG ( BMW) and Daimler AG.
While the half-brothers passed away decades ago, their legacy has endured. Herbert’s widow, Johanna Quandt, 86, and their children Susanne Klatten and Stefan Quandt, have remained in the public eye as BMW’s dominant shareholders. The billionaire daughters of Harald Quandt – Katarina Geller-Herr, 61, Gabriele Quandt, 60, Anette-Angelika May-Thies, 58, and 51-year-old Colleen-Bettina Rosenblat-Mo – have kept a lower profile.
The four sisters inherited about 1.5 billion deutsche marks ($760 million) after the death of their mother, Inge, in 1978, according to the family’s sanctioned biography, Die Quandts. They manage their wealth through the Harald Quandt Holding GmbH, a Bad Homburg, Germany-based family investment company and trust named after their father. Dr. Fritz Becker, the CEO of the family entities, said the siblings realized average annual returns above 7 percent from its founding in 1981 through 1996. Since then, the returns have averaged 7.6%.
“The family wants to stay private and that is an acceptable situation for me,” said Becker in an interview at his Bad Homburg office. “We invest our money globally and if it’s $1b., $500m. or $3b., who cares?”
Together, the four sisters – and the two children of a deceased sibling – share a fortune worth at least $6b., giving each of them a net worth of $1.2b., according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. They have never appeared individually as billionaires on an international wealth ranking.
Becker declined to provide the exact figure the holding manages for the four sisters. The siblings declined to comment for this account, said Ralf-Dieter Brunowsky, a spokesman for the family investment company, in an e-mail. He said the net worth calculation was “too high,” declining to be more specific.
The rise of the Quandt family fortune shares the same trajectory as Germany’s quest for global domination in the 20th century. It began in 1883, when Emil Quandt acquired a textile company owned by his late father-in-law. At the turn of the century, Emil passed the business to his eldest son, Guenther.
The younger Quandt saw an opportunity with the onset of war in 1914. His factories, already one of the biggest clothing manufacturers for the German state, quadrupled their weekly uniform production for the army, according to Die Quandts.
After Germany’s surrender four years later, Quandt put the company’s wartime profits to use. In 1922, he bought a majority stake in Accumulatoren-Fabrik AG, a Hagen-based battery manufacturer. Six years later, he took over Berlin-Karlsruher Industriewerken AG, a Berlin-based manufacturer that made sewing machines and silverware. The factory, once one of Germany’s largest weapon producers, had been forced to retool as part of the country’s disarmament agreement.
“The Quandt’s business grew in the Kaiserreich, it grew during the Weimar Republic, it grew during the Second World War and it grew strongly after the war,” Rudiger Jungbluth, author of Die Quandts, said in an interview at a Bavarian restaurant in Hamburg last November.
In 1918, Guenther Quandt’s first wife died of the Spanish flu, leaving him a widower with two young sons, Hellmut and Herbert. He remarried Magda Ritschel in 1921, and the couple’s only son, Harald, was born later that year. Hellmut died in 1927, from complications related to appendicitis.
Quandt and Magda divorced in 1929. Two years later, she married Joseph Goebbels, a member of the German parliament who also held a doctorate degree in drama and served as head of propaganda for Germany’s growing Nazi party. After the Nazis took power in 1933, their leader, Adolf Hitler, appointed Goebbels as the Third Reich’s propaganda minister.
Guenther Quandt joined the party that same year. His factories became key suppliers to the German war effort, even though his relationship with Goebbels had become increasingly strained.
“There was constant rivalry,” said Bonn-based history professor Joachim Scholtyseck, author of a family-commissioned study about their involvement with the Third Reich, in a telephone interview. “It didn’t matter that Goebbels didn’t like him. It didn’t have any influence on Quandt’s ability to make money.”
In 1937, he earned the title of Wehrwirtschaftsfuehrer, the name given to members of an elite group of businessmen who were deemed beneficial to the production of war materials for the Third Reich. During the war, Quandt’s AFA manufactured batteries for U-Boat submarines and V-2 rocket launchers. His BKIW – which had been renamed Deutsche Waffen-und Munitionsfabriken AG in 1936 – produced Mauser firearms, ammunition and anti-aircraft missiles.
“He was one of the leading industrialists in the Third Reich and the Second World War,” Scholtyseck said. “He always kept a very low profile.” From 1940 to 1945, the Quandt family factories were staffed with more than 50,000 forced civilian laborers, prisoners of war and concentration camp workers, according to Scholtyseck’s 1,183-page study. The report was commissioned by the family in 2007 after German television aired the documentary The Silence of the Quandts, a critical look at their wartime activities.
Released in September 2011, the study also found that Quandt appropriated assets from Jewish company owners and that his son Herbert had planned building an AFA factory in which slave laborers would be deployed.
“Guenther Quandt didn’t have a Nazi kind of thinking,” said Jungbluth, the family biographer. “He was looking for any opportunity to expand his personal empire.” Quandt’s youngest son, Harald, lived with his mother, Goebbels and six half-siblings. In 1939, he joined the German army after the country’s invasion of Poland, volunteering for the army’s paratrooper unit one year later.
During the war, Harald was deployed in Greece, France and Russia, before being shot and captured in Italy in 1944, and taken to the British Army-run POW camp in Benghazi where he received his mother’s farewell letter.
His stepfather also sent him a goodbye note.
“It’s likely that you’ll be the only one to remain who can continue the tradition of our family,” wrote Goebbels, who served as Chancellor of Germany for one day following Hitler’s suicide on April 30, 1945.
After the war, Guenther Quandt served in an internment camp in Moosburg an der Isar for more than a year, before being judged a “Mitlaeufer” – a Nazi follower who wasn’t formally involved in the regime’s crimes – in denazification hearings in 1948. No repercussions followed.
“He was lucky that he wasn’t as prominent as someone like Flick or Krupp,” said Scholtyseck, referring to the German industrialists Friedrich Flick and Alfried Krupp, who were sentenced to prison terms at the Nuremberg war crimes trials.
Guenther died in 1954 while vacationing in Cairo, leaving his business empire equally in the hands of his two surviving sons, Harald and Herbert. Most notably, the assets included ownership of AFA and Deutsche Waffen-und Munitionsfabriken – renamed Industrie-Werke Karlsruhe AG after the war – and stakes in Daimler-Benz and potash miner Wintershall AG.
Herbert managed the stakes in the battery, car and potash firm, while Harald oversaw the interests in the industrial companies, according to Jungbluth’s biography.
Over the next decade, the brothers increased their stake in Daimler; Herbert saved BMW from collapse in the 1960s after becoming its largest shareholder and backing the development of new models.
Harald died in 1967, at age 45, in an airplane crash outside Turin, Italy. The relationship between his widow, Inge, and Herbert deteriorated after his death. Negotiations to settle the estate by separating assets commenced in 1970.
The most valuable asset that the Harald Quandt heirs received was four-fifths of a 14% stake in Daimler, according to the biography. In 1974, the entire stake was sold to the Kuwait Investment Authority, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, for about 1b. deutsche marks, according to a DaimlerBenz publication from 1986 celebrating its centennial.
Inge Quandt, who suffered from depression, died of a heart attack on Christmas Eve 1978. Her new husband, Dr. Hans-Hilman von Halem, shot himself in the head on Boxing Day. The five orphaned daughters, two of them teenagers, were left to split the family fortune.
The estate’s trustees had started overseeing the daughters’ money in 1974. An active investment approach commenced with the founding of the family investment company in 1981.
“It’s different if you work for a family than a corporation,” said Becker. “You can really invest instead of fulfilling regulation requirements.” According to Die Quandts, the siblings try to get together a few times a year to discuss their investments. Gabriele Quandt lives in Munich. After earning a master’s degree in business administration at INSEAD in Fontainebleau, France, she married German publishing heir Florian Langenscheidt, with whom she had two sons. The couple divorced in 2008.
Katarina Geller-Herr owns Gestuet Waeldershausen, an equestrian center in Homberg (Ohm), Germany. She sponsored Lars Nieberg, a twotime Olympic gold medalist in show jumping.
Colleen-Bettina Rosenblat-Mo is a jewelry designer who runs a studio and showroom in Hamburg. She converted to Judaism in New York at age 24. Her first marriage was to Michael Rosenblat, a German-Jewish businessman, whose father survived a concentration camp. The couple divorced in 1997. She remarried Frode Mo, a Norwegian journalist.
Anette-Angelika May-Thies lives in Hamburg, according to the Harald Quandt Holding shareholders list filed with the German federal trade registry. Her first marriage was to Axel May, a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. international adviser for private banking, who managed the family’s investments for about 25 years.
The siblings are also majority owners and investors in five financial services companies, all of which pay dividends, according to Becker. The firms were founded to manage the sisters’ wealth and subsequently opened up to third parties.
The six companies combined manage $18b. in assets, according to the family investment company’s website. Becker said the majority of the money controlled by these firms is invested for third parties. One-fifth of the family fortune is managed by trustees for the two children of the youngest Quandt sibling, Patricia Halterman, who died in July 2005, four days before turning 38. Her Upper East Side townhouse sold for $37.5m. in 2008.
Auda International LP serves as the sisters’ New York-based privateequity unit. It manages almost $5b. and was founded as their US office in 1989, said Becker. Real Estate Capital Partners LP started the same year and has invested about $9b. in real estate, according to its website. Both companies are owned through HQFS LP, an offshore entity based in the Cayman Islands.
In Bad Homburg, HQ Trust GmbH serves as a investment management company for about 30 families with fortunes ranging from 50m. euros to 500m. euros. Equita Management GmbH invests in small and mid-cap companies in Austria, Switzerland and Germany. HQ Advisor GmbH provides accounting and controlling services.
Only one sister, Gabriele, carries the family name, and none are active in the day-to-day business of the family office, said Becker.
Their uncle, Herbert Quandt, died in 1982. His fortune was divided between six children from three different marriages. BMW, his most valuable asset, was inherited by his third wife Johanna Quandt and their children, Stefan Quandt, 46, and Susanne Klatten, 50. The three billionaires hold 46.7% of the Munichbased car producer, according to the company’s 2011 annual report.
After Scholtyseck’s study was published in 2011, cousins Gabriele and Stefan Quandt acknowledged their family’s ties and involvement with the Third Reich in an interview with Germany’s Die Zeit newspaper.
“Magda killed her six children in the Fuehrerbunker. Our father loved his half-siblings very much. And when, like me, you have something like this in your family history, you think: It can’t be any worse,” Gabriele Quandt said in the interview. “It’s a sad truth that forced laborers died in Quandt companies,” said Stefan.
The acknowledgment didn’t prompt a public distancing from the men that made their family Germany’s richest. The families’ offices in Bad Homburg are named after Guenther and Harald Quandt, and the Herbert Quandt media prize of 50,000 euros is awarded annually to German journalists.
July 16, 2014UncategorizedBillionaires, BMW, Germany, Holocaust, Justice, Quandt, slave labor
By Gail Edmondson October 10, 2007
A shocking documentary aired on German TV exposes the family’s shameful history of Nazi profiteering and use of slave labor
Automaker BMW is Germany’s most admired employer and a pioneer in profit sharing. So it came as a shock Sept. 30 when an investigative television documentary exposed the Nazi-era misdeeds of BMW’s controlling shareholder family, the Quandts. The Silence of the Quandt Family highlighted how patriarch Günther Quandt, grandfather to the generation now controlling BMW (BMWG.DE), built a blood-stained wartime fortune on the back of slave labor and how he sidestepped postwar recrimination.
The reclusive Quandt family responded to the documentary five days later, on Oct. 5, pledging to back a research project into the family’s Nazi past and its role under the Third Reich, opening family archives and documents to an independent historian.
quandt trioThe mysterious and elusive Quandt family
“The accusations that have been raised against our family have moved us,” said the family in a statement. “We recognize that in our history as a German business family, the years 1933 to 1945 have not been sufficiently cleared up.”
BMW, of which the Quandts became major shareholders 15 years after the war, was not implicated in the documentary. In keeping with its normal policy, the automaker made no comment about the Quandts, but noted that it has publically confronted its own wartime history via independent research projects.
The TV program stunned Germany and triggered a raft of newspaper stories with headlines such as “The Quandts’ Bloody Billions” and “A Fortune Stained in Blood.” The hour-long documentary included interviews with former slave laborers who testified to the devastating conditions and atrocities which took place at Günther Quandt’s battery company, Accumulatorenfabrik AG (Afa). Afa produced highly specialized batteries for the Nazi war machine, used in U-boats and V-2 rockets. It also produced munitions. “We were treated terribly and had to drink water from the toilets. We were also whipped,” said Takis Mylopoulos, a forced laborer who worked in Quandt’s Hannover plant.
Based on documents unearthed by the filmmakers, Quandt estimated a “fluctuation of 80 prisoners per month,” in his battery factory—a likely reference to expected deaths per month, the film claims. It also says that Quandt, who joined the Nazi party in 1933, wielded close family ties to the Nazi elite to grow his battery business. Sven Quandt, a grandson of Günther and the only family member to appear in the documentary, says that he and his siblings cannot be held responsible for their grandfather’s activities.
Quandts Rejected Pleas for Reparations
Afa had factories in Hannover, Berlin, and Vienna and was supplied with slave laborers from concentration camps who died by the hundreds, according to the documentary. One former Danish slave laborer testified in the film that he and other survivors, who were deported to a German concentration camp and sent to work at Afa, returned to Germany in 1972 to plead for financial support from the Quandts, since the harsh working conditions at Afa had resulted in lifelong ailments.
The Quandts turned them away, the film says. “It’s for me a step in the right direction that the Quandt family, after so many decades, finally is willing to face its history,” says Carl-Adolf Sörensen, a former Danish resistance fighter who was sent to the Hannover-Stöcken concentration camp in 1943. Sörensen wants the Quandts to admit that Afa relied on slave labor from the camp.
The Silence of the Quandt Family was broadcast by Norddeutsche Runkfunk (NDR), an affiliate of the national ARD network, and was based on five years of research by authors Eric Friedler and Barbara Siebert. It premiered at the Hamburg Film Festival on Sept. 30 and was aired without notice on television later that night, at 11:30 p.m., reaching an estimated audience of 1.3 million. Some German commentators surmise the broadcast was not announced in advance for fear of legal interference from the Quandts to block the program. ARD officials denied the speculation and said they decided to air the program only after the Film Festival premiere.
Despite his Nazi membership—and, as it now appears, his use of slave labor—Günther Quandt was deemed after the war to have been more of a “passive follower” than a convinced Nazi. But Benjamin Ferencz, a prosecutor from the Nuremberg Trials interviewed in the documentary, said that the facts revealed today likely would have led to Quandt’s conviction for war crimes—similar to those meted out to members of the Krupp and Flick families.
“Quandt escaped justice,” Ferencz told the filmmakers. Industrialist Friederich Flick, by contrast, received a prison sentence of seven years at the Nuremberg Trials for deploying slave labor and for serving the Nazi war machine, but was freed in 1950.
After the war, Quandt received his company, later renamed Varta (VARGK.F), back from the government and continued to build his industrial wealth—the fortune eventually wielded by his son Herbert in 1959 to buy BMW. Herbert’s heirs, including wife Johanna, daughter Susanna Klatten, and son Stefan, today own a controlling 47% stake in BMW, which has a market capitalization of $42 billion. The Quandts also own a controlling stake in pharmaceutical giant Altana (ALTG.DE). The family’s holdings are worth an estimated $34 billion.
Despite its acknowledgement that the family’s ties to the Nazis have been played down, the Quandt family members insist the details of Günther Quandt’s past are not entirely new. A 2002 biography covered much of the same ground. It’s also been known that Quandt’s wife Magda Ritschel, whom he divorced in 1929, remarried Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels in 1931 and that Goebbels adopted Quandt’s son Harald. Adolf Hitler acted as witness at the wedding.
Many German companies including BMW, Volkswagen (VOWG.DE), and Deutsche Bank (DB) already have explored their own wartime collaboration and misdeeds during the Nazi era, publishing books, turning over documentation to experts, and paying millions of dollars into funds distributed to forced-labor survivors. Volkswagen’s book documents its deployment of 20,000 slave laborers during the Third Reich. In 1999, BMW and other German companies founded the “Remembrance, Responsibility and Future” foundation, which provides compensation to former forced laborers.
The Quandts, by contrast, have remained silent about their past, perhaps fearing a global public backlash against the BMW brand. Until now, the family has refused historians access to its Nazi-era historical archives and papers—and it still has not acknowledged that Afa factories made use of slave labor from concentration camps.
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