A few days ago Inessa S posted on her Telegram channel a list of the Nazi-officers who subsequently entered the NATO service at the highest level.
The NAZI officers in charge of NATO. You read that right…
- Adolf Heusinger, Hitler’s Chief of Staff, went on to become Chairman of NATO Military Committee in 1961-1964.
- Hans Speidel, NATO Commander of Central Europe (CCE) 1957-1963
- Johann Steinhof, Chairman of the NATO Military Committee, 1971-1974
- Johann von Kleimansegg – NATO CCE, 1967-1968
- Ernst Ferber – NATO CCE, 1973-1975
- Carl Schnel – NATO CCE, 1975-1977.
- Franz Josef Schulze – NATO CCE, 1977-1979.
- Ferdinand von Senger und Etterlin – NATO CCE, 1979-1983.
Everyone also read about the troubled Credit Suisse that as good as went under.
And now the dots, vaguely connecting these two seemingly disjointed news items. Yesterday “Argumenty i Fakty” published and article that places under scrutiny the finances that came to Switzerland during WWII. This article can also serve as a auxiliary material to the bigger documentary, which I translated some time ago: The Great Unknown War. A must-see documentary about the WWII prelude. By Andrei Medvedev.
Reminders of the events of 80 years ago in Europe occur with frightening regularity. This time the topic of close ties between Swiss bankers and the Third Reich came up.
Up until 2020
The US Senate Budget Commission has published a report on the investigation of the Swiss bank Credit Suisse’s links with former figures of the Third Reich. According to the conclusions made by American parliamentarians, the bank served the accounts of the Nazis and related persons until 2020.
According to the information that the Senate commission considered reliable, after 1945, accounts of at least 70 high-ranking Nazi officials or members of Nazi-related groups were opened in the bank. At least 14 of them remained active at the beginning of the XXI century, including an account in the name of a high-ranking SS officer convicted in Nuremberg.
In 2020, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which has been hunting for Nazi fugitives for decades, announced that it had data on 12,000 Nazis hiding in Argentina who kept their money in Credit Suisse.
We are talking about billions of dollars. Moreover, presumably, these may be funds seized by the Nazis from the Jews who then became their victims.
A Heated discussion
Synchronously with the publication of the US Senate commission, there appeared a message from Credit Suisse, which claims that the data on Nazi accounts are erroneous. The Swiss refer to an audit conducted by the international consulting company AlixPartners. The bank insists that there were no more than 12 post-war Nazi accounts, and all of them have been closed for a long time.
American senators also have their own point of view on this: they believe that the check in the bank was conducted in an “unreasonably narrow and rigid framework”, did not take into account the newly received data. In addition, the parliamentarians explicitly state that the management of Credit Suisse interfered with the investigation.
“Tannenbaum” did not take place: why did the Nazis take care of Switzerland?
It is known that after the defeat of France in June 1940, the German command developed a plan for Operation Tannenbaum, which provided for the occupation of Switzerland. It was assumed that the territory would be occupied by German and Italian troops. The final plan for the new blitzkrieg was ready by the end of the summer of 1940. However, Hitler’s directives for its implementation have not been received.
Historians name several reasons why neutral Switzerland, surrounded on all sides by Nazi territories, escaped occupation. But it is an absolutely reliable fact that Swiss banks not only provided financial flows between the Third Reich and the large Western companies, but also accumulated funds of the Nazi state and its individual representatives in their accounts.
There is one interesting point – in 1934 a law was passed in Switzerland that allowed anonymous numbered accounts to be opened. This measure was ideal for the Nazis, who were plotting a large-scale robbery. One of the pioneers in the field of accumulation was personally Adolf Hitler. In fairness, the Fuhrer transferred to Switzerland the money raised from the sale of “Mein Kampf”. But the real “golden rivers” flowed to Switzerland after the Nazis began to carry out their most bloody plans.
The terrible cargo of Hauptsturmfuhrer Melmer
At the Nuremberg trials, the Minister of Economy of the Third Reich and President of the Reichsbank, Walter Funk stated: “Only in Switzerland could we still exchange gold for the currency Germany needed.”
And we are talking not only about the gold reserves of the states captured by the Nazis. Gold coming from the gold rings and dental crowns of those whom the Nazis destroyed in concentration camps was also sent to Switzerland.
An entire path of gold flow from Auschwitz to the vaults of Swiss banks was once traced. The “cashier” responsible for transporting these “assets” to the Reichsbank was SS Hauptsturmfuhrer Bruno Melmer. By the way, he received only 3 years in prison for his activities and subsequently lived until the early 1980s in West Berlin.
The gold scrap was cleaned by Degussa, an official partner of the Reichsbank. After that, German bankers sold the melted ingots to the Swiss.
It is reliably known about 120 kilograms of the so-called “Melmer gold” was sold to Switzerland. But experts are convinced that the uncovered part of these dirty financial flows is only the tip of the iceberg. Neither the escaped Nazis nor the Swiss bankers were at all interested in revealing all the secrets.
Lawsuits and agreements
In the mid-1990s, the World Jewish Congress filed a lawsuit against the Swiss banks, demanding the return of unclaimed deposits of persons who became victims of Nazism during the Second World War.
Under the settlement agreement, the bankers paid the heirs a total of $1.28 billion.
But this, we emphasize, is the money of the victims that remained in Swiss banks. And somewhere near them lay, and perhaps still lie, the funds that the Nazis looted with the help of monstrous crimes.
The history of the money of the Nazis in Swiss banks is, to put it mildly, not new, and the question arises — why, in fact, American senators are burning with a thirst for justice right now?
A blackmail tool?
Since 2022, Swiss banks, primarily Credit Suisse, have been accused of storing dirty money by citizens of various states accused of various illegal activities.
In 2023, Credit Suisse was on the verge of bankruptcy, after which it was absorbed by UBS Group AG.
The new wave of pressure is supposed to be aimed at forcing the Swiss to become an absolutely controlled instrument for sanctions pressure on states that the “collective West” considers hostile. This is not only about Russia, but potentially about China. Apparently, the current level of cooperation of the Swiss in this matter is considered insufficient in Washington.
Americans are cynical: if they use modern Nazis in Ukraine for their own purposes, why not use the threat of exposing the bankers’ long-standing shenanigans with the Nazis of the past to pressure the Swiss?
As a postscript… given the above, is there a difference?