Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

"Science," the Greek word for knowledge, when appended to the word "political," creates what seems like an oxymoron. For who could claim to know politics? More complicated than any game, most people who play it become addicts and die without understanding what they were addicted to. The rest of us suffer under their malpractice as our "leaders." A truer case of the blind leading the blind could not be found. Plumb the depths of confusion here.

Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:52 pm

Facts and Fascism
by George Seldes, assisted by Helen Seldes
© 1943 by In Fact, Inc.




Dedication: This book is dedicated to all who are fighting fascism everywhere

Table of Contents:

Part 1: The Big Money and Big Profits in Fascism
o Chapter 1: Fascism on the Home Front
o Chapter 2: Profits in Fascism: Germany
o Chapter 3: Big Business Bossed Mussolini
o Chapter 4: The Five Who Own Japan
o Chapter 5: Who Paid for Franco's War?
o Chapter 6: The Nazi Cartel Plot in America
o Chapter 7: NAM: The Men Who Finance American Fascism
Part 2: Native Fascist Forces
o Chapter 1: The American Legion
o Chapter 2: Fascism in U.S. Industry: The Ford Empire
o Chapter 3: Lindbergh: Spreader of Hitler's Lies
o Chapter 4: The Reader's Digest
o Chapter 5: Nam Mouth Organ: Fulton Lewis, Jr.
Part 3: Our Press as a Fascist Force
o Chapter 1: The Press in Chains
o Chapter 2: Berlin-Chicago-New York Axis
o Chapter 3: Poison Pen Pegler
o Chapter 4: Wallace's Suppressed Speech
o Chapter 5: The Press and War Profiteers
o Chapter 6: The Suppressed Tobacco Story
Conclusion: Victory Over Fascism

Professor Salvemini told Reporter Joseph Philip Lyford of the [Harvard] undergraduate daily that "a new brand of Fascism" threatens America, "the Fascism of corporate business enterprise in this country." He believed that "almost 100% of American Big Business" is in sympathy with the "philosophy" of government behind the totalitarianism of Hitler and Mussolini; the bond of sympathy between Big Business and the Fascist Axis, said the professor of history, lies in the respect of American industrialists for the Axis methods of coercing labor.


The Minister of Welfare in announcing the abolition of the trade unions made this statement: "Our primary aim is to drive communist ideas and dangerous social thoughts from the minds of the people by ordering the dissolution of the established labor unions, which have a tendency to sharpen class consciousness among workers, which hamper the development of industry, and disturb the peace and order of the country. -- "Facts and Fascism," by George Seldes


In 1937 the government brought all the leading employers and business confederations together in the Japanese League of Economic Organizations, which Brady describes as a sort of private National Defense Council for business enterprise. He concludes: "It would be hard to imagine a much higher degree of policy-determining power than is indicated by the combination of the Zaibatsu and its concentric cartel and federational machinery. The hierarchy of business control seems well-nigh complete." The government of Japan and the business interests of Japan are bound together "from center to circumference." "What is being accomplished is the gradual rounding out of a highly coordinated fascist-type of totalitarian economy."


The real Fifth Column is built on more than economic penetration, and much more than a few pro-Nazi preachers, red network manipulators, publishers of cheap and lying anti-Semitic pamphlets, and crackpots of all sorts. In Spain, where the term Fifth Column originated, it was not reported generally that the pro-Franco traitors within Madrid, who hid on roofs and murdered people in the streets, were -- except for hired gunmen -- members of the upper ruling class, the aristocrats, the landowners, and the members of the big business ruling families, and all the dead and wounded were working men. Our press, which had nothing but praise for Mussolini for almost a generation, and which has always protected Fascism, Naziism and reaction in general by redbaiting every person and movement which is anti-Fascist, anti-Nazi and anti-reactionary, later made a grand noise over the traitors, seditionists and propagandists such as Coughlin, Fritz Kuhn and Pelley, who were the outstanding loudmouths at the time of Pearl Harbor. These small-fry fascisti and the Rev. Gerald Winrod and numerous others spread the same lies which they received from Hitler's World-Service (Welt-Dienst) of Erfurt; all these noisy propagandists and traitors, repeating Hitler's propaganda, did succeed in raising a huge smokescreen over America. Behind this artificial redbaiting, anti-Semitic, anti-New Deal fog of confusion and falsehood, however, there was a real Fifth Column of greater importance, the great owners and rulers of America who planned world domination through political and military Fascism, just as surely as Hitler did in Germany, and like groups and like leaders did in other countries. There is no reason to believe that the United States was the one exception to the spread of Fascism.


"Deal with the government and the rest of the squawkers the way you deal with a buyer in a seller's market! If the buyer wants to buy, he has to meet your price. Nineteen hundred and twenty-nine to 1942 was the buyer's market -- we had to sell on their terms. When the war is over, it will be a buyer's market again. But this is a seller's market. They want what we've got. Good. Make them pay the right price for it. The price isn't unfair or unreasonable. And if they don't like the price, why don't they think it over?"

"The way to view the issue is this: Are there common denominators for winning the war and the peace? 1f there are, then, we should deal with both in 1943. What are they? We will win the war (a) by reducing taxes on corporations, high income brackets, and increasing taxes on lower incomes; (b) by removing the unions from any power to tell industry how to produce, how to deal with their employers, or anything else; (c) by destroying any and all government agencies that stand in the way of free enterprise." [Lammot DuPont, chairman of the board of E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co.]


"If we are to come out of this war with a Marxist brand of National Socialism, then I say negotiate peace now and bring Adolf over here to run the show. He knows how. He's efficient. He can do a better job than any of us can and a damned sight better job than Roosevelt, who is nothing but a left-wing bungling amateur."

"We've got Roosevelt on the run. We licked production and the Axis is licking him. The finger points where it belongs. We'll keep him on the run. Let's spend some real money this year, what the hell! -- it'll only cost us 20 percent, the rest would go in taxes anyway."

-- "Facts and Fascism," by George Seldes
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:54 pm


THE TIME will come when people will not believe it was possible to mobilize 10,800,000 Americans to fight Fascism and not tell them the truth about the enemy. And yet, this is exactly what happened in our country in the Global War.

The Office of War Information published millions of words, thousands of pamphlets, posters and other material, most of it very valuable and all of it intended to inspire the people and raise the morale of the soldiers of production and the soldiers of the field; but it is also a fact that to the date of this writing the OWI did not publish a single pamphlet, poster, broadside or paper telling either the civilian population or the men and women in uniform what Fascism really is, what the forces are behind the political and military movements generally known as Fascism, who puts up the money, who make the tremendous profits which Fascism has paid its backers in Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and other nations. Certainly when it comes to relating foreign Fascism with native American Fascism there is a conspiracy of silence in which the OWI, the American press, and all the forces of reaction in America are united.

Outside of a few books, a few pamphlets, and a few articles in the very small independent weekly press which reaches only a few thousand readers, not one word on this subject has been printed, and not one word has been heard over any of the big commercial radio stations.

Faraway Fascism has been attacked, exposed, and denounced by the same publications (the Saturday Evening Post for example) which for years ran articles lauding Mussolini and his notable backers in all lands; and the Hearst newspapers, which published from 1934 to Pearl Harbor dozens of signed propaganda articles by Dr. Goebbels, Goering and other Nazis, now call them names, but no publication which takes money from certain Big Business elements (all of which will be named here) will dare name the native or nearby Fascists. In many instances the publications themselves are part of our own Fascism.

But we must not be fooled into believing that American Fascism consists of a few persons, some crackpots, some mentally perverted, a few criminals such as George W. Christians and Pelley, who are in jail at present, or the 33 indicted for sedition. These are the lunatic fringes of Fascism, they are also the small fry, the unimportant figureheads, just as Hitler was before the Big Money in Germany decided to set him up in business.

The real Fascists of America are never named in the commercial press. It will not even hint at the fact that there are many powerful elements working against a greater democracy, against an America without discrimination based on race, color and creed, an America where never again will one third of the people be without sufficient food, clothing and shelter, where never again will there be 12,000,000 unemployed and many more millions working for semi-starvation wages while the DuPont, Ford, Hearst, Mellon and Rockefeller Empires move into the billions of dollars.


I call these elements Fascist. You may not like names and labels but technically as well as journalistically and morally they are correct. You may substitute Tories, or Economic Royalists, or Vested Interests, or whatever you like for the flag-waving anti-American Americans whose efforts and objectives parallel those of the Liga Industriale which bought out Mussolini in 1920, and the Thyssen-Krupp-Voegeler-Flick Rhineland industry and banking system which subsidized Hitler when Naziism was about to collapse. Their main object was to end the civil liberties of the nation, destroy the labor unions, end the free press, and make more money at the expense of a slave nation. Both succeeded. And in America one similar organization has already made the following historical record:

1. Organized big business in a movement against labor.

2. Founded the Liberty League to fight civil liberties.

3. Subsidized anti-labor, Fascist and anti-Semitic organizations (Senator Black's Lobby Investigation).

4. Signed a pact with Nazi agents for political and economic (cartel) penetration of U.S. (Exposed in In Fact).

5. Founded a $1,000,000-a-year propaganda outfit to corrupt the press, radio, schools and churches.

6. Stopped the passage of food, drug and other laws aimed to safeguard the consumer, i.e., 132,000,000 Americans.

7. Conspired, with DuPont as leader, in September, 1942, to sabotage the war effort in order to maintain profits.

8. Sabotage the U.S. defense plan in 1940 by refusing to convert the auto plants and by a sit-down of capital against plant expansion; sabotage the oil, aluminum and rubber expansion programs. (If any of these facts are not known to you it is because 99% of our press, in the pay of the same elements, suppressed the Tolan, Truman, Bone Committee reports, Thurman Arnold's reports, the TNEC Monopoly reports and other Government documents.)

9. Delayed the winning of the war through the acts of $-a-year men looking out for present profits and future monopoly rather than the quick defeat of Fascism. (Documented in the labor press for two years; and again at the 1942 C.I.O. Convention.)

Naturally enough the President of the United States and other high officials cannot name the men, organizations, pressure lobbyists, and national associations which have made this and similar records; they can only refer to "noisy traitors," Quislings, defeatists, the "Cliveden Set" or to the Tories and Economic Royalists. And you may be certain that our press will never name the defeatists because the same elements which made the above 9-point record are the main advertisers and biggest subsidizers of the newspapers and magazines. In the many instances even the general charges by the President himself have been suppressed. In Germany, in Italy until the seizure of government by the Fascists, the majority of newspapers were brave enough to be anti-Fascist, whereas in America strangely enough a large part of the press (Hearst, Scripps-Howard, McCormick-Patterson) has for years been pro-Fascist and almost all big papers live on the money of the biggest Tory and reactionary corporations and reflect their viewpoint now.

On the anti-Fascist side, unfortunately, there is not one publication which can boast of more than one or two hundred thousand circulation, whereas the reactionary press has its New York News with 2,000,000 daily, its Saturday Evening Post with 3,000,000 weekly and its Reader's Digest with 9,000,000 monthly, which means up to 50,000,000 readers.

It is a shameful and tragic situation that in America, with 132,000,000 persons of whom 50,000,000 read anti-labor and anti-liberal propaganda in Reader's Digest, only a few hundred thousand buy and read intelligent, honest, unbribed, uncorrupted publications, issued in the public interest.
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:59 pm


IT SEEMS to this writer that the most important thing in the world today next to destroying Fascism on the field of battle, is to fight Fascism which has not yet taken up the gun.

This other Fascism will become more active -- and drape itself in the national flag everywhere -- when military Fascism has been defeated. So far as America is concerned, its first notable Fascist leader, Huey Long, a very smart demagogue, once said, "Sure we'll have Fascism here, but it will come as an anti-Fascism movement."

To know what Fascism really is and why we must fight it and destroy it here in America, we must first of all know what it is we are fighting, what the Fascist regimes really are and do, who puts up the money and backs Fascism in every country (including the United States at this very moment), and who owns the nations under such regimes, and why the natives of all Fascist countries must be driven into harder work, less money, reduced standard of living, poverty and desperation so that the men and corporations who found, subsidize and own Fascism can grow unbelievably rich.

This is what has happened in Germany, Italy, Japan and other countries; it is true to a great extent in Spain, Finland, Hungary, Rumania, the Polish so-called Republic, and although not one standard newspaper or magazine has ever breathed a word about it, the same Fascist movement -- the march of the men of wealth and power, not the crackpot doings of the two or three dozen who have been indicted for sedition -- is taking place in America.

These matters are all related, both as systems of government and as business enterprises. It is the purpose of Part I of this book to show who really owns the Fascist International, who profits from it, and just how far the United States has gone along the Fascist line.

The true story of Hitler-Germany is the real clue to the situation everywhere. In 1923, after his monkeyshines in the Munich Beer Hall Putsch, Hitler received his first big money from Fritz Thyssen. January 30, 1933, Hitler came into power after a deal with Hindenburg and the big Prussian landlords (Junkers). Since then, and in all of vast occupied Europe, Hitler has been paying off the men who invested in Fascism as a purely money-making enterprise. A personal dispute put Thyssen out, but his brother and the thousand biggest industrialists and bankers of Germany have as a result of financing Hitler become millionaires; the I. G. Farbenindustrie and other cartel organizations have become billionaires.

Big money entrenched itself completely after the departure of Fritz Thyssen, with his rather quaint ideas of placing limits on corruption in business, with his repugnance to the murder of Jews as a national policy, and other rather old-fashioned ethical concepts of monopoly and exploitation which he inherited from his father and which did not encompass robbery and bloodshed as means of commercial aggression. The cartels moved forward with the troops.

There were, of course, exposés of Hitler as a tool of Germany's Big Money, written before he became dictator, but inasmuch as publication occurred in small non-commercial weeklies which few people read, or in the radical press, which is always accused of misrepresentation (by the commercial press which is always lying) the fact remains that few people knew what really was going on. This conspiracy of silence became even more intense when the big American and other banking houses floated their great loans for Hitler -- and other fascist dictators in many lands.

As early as 1931 Gerhard Hirschfeld published in a Catholic literary weekly a tiny part of the evidence that Hitler was the political arm of the biggest branch of German capitalism. Recalling that Hitler vowed that the Krupps, the Thyssens and the Kirdorffs, the Mannesmans, the Borsigs and the Siemens (who are the Garys, Schwabs and Mellons of Germany) -- would be stripped of wealth and power, Hirschfeld pointed out that "it is from the ranks of heavy industry, however, that Hitler is drawing much of the money which is making German Fascism something to be reckoned with. Hitler received considerable support from the heavy industries of Bavaria where he started the Fascist movement. The Borsig works and the Eisenheuttenleute (Association of iron forgers and founders) are important pillars of the Fascist structure. ... From the machine industry of Wuerttemberg and from many other branches of the iron and steel industries, marks flow into the bulging coffers. In addition, money comes from abroad. Swiss friends sent him 330,000 francs just before last year's elections. Baron von Bissing, the university professor, collected many thousands of florins in the Netherlands ... German-American friends expressed their sympathy in dollar bills ... even directors of the French-controlled Skoda-Works (of Czechoslovakia), famous in the manufacture of armaments, may be found among Hitler's supporters."

It requires neither integrity nor courage today to say that Hitler was made the Fuehrer of Germany by the biggest industrialists of his country. (It does require integrity and courage even today to relate the German men and forces to those in America, to point out the equivalents, and that is why no commercial newspaper or magazine has ever done so.) But as early as Summer, 1933, in the Week-End Review, a light which shows up Fascism as nothing but a military-political-economic movement to grab all the money and resources of the world was already focused on Germany by the man who wrote under the name of "Ernst Henri."

He denies, first of all, the myth that Naziism is a "rebellion of the middle classes." The middle classes, it is true, were most united and outspoken for Hitler, they did in fact send in their contributions, but when "these sons of butchers and publicans, of post office officials and insurance agents, of doctors and lawyers" imagined they were fighting for their own interests, when "they swarmed out of the Storm Troops barracks and struck down defenseless workers, Jews, Socialists and Communists" they would not have been able to do it, had they not been mobilized by other sources. "Hitler, the idol of this mass, and himself only a petty bourgeois -- a petty bourgeois posing as a Napoleon -- in reality followed the dictates of a higher power."

The secret, continues Henri, "must be sought in the hidden history of Germany's industrial oligarchy, in the post-war politics of coal and steel. ... Not Hitler, but Thyssen, the great magnate of the Ruhr, is the prime mover of German Fascism."

Thyssen's main undertaking was the German Steel Trust, the equivalent of U.S. Steel. Vereinigte Stahlwerke Aktien Gesellschaft, incidentally, was heavily financed by American banking houses -- Episcopalian, Catholic and Jewish -- throughout the pre-Hitler and Hitler regimes. The Steel Trust was the basis of Germany economy, and when it found itself in a desperate situation, during the Bruening regime which preceded Hitler, the foundations of Germany were threatened. It was then that the state came to trust's aid by buying nearly half the shares of Gelsenkirchener Bergwerke holding company, nominally worth 125,000,000 marks, at a fantastic price, estimated at double the market. Immediately thereafter the political parties of the nation began fighting for control of this weapon.

The Bruening regime, Catholic, favored the Otto Wolff-Deutsche Bank group which was affiliated with powerful Catholic groups. The Thyssen-Flick-Voegeler group was opposed, although Thyssen himself was a Catholic. Otto Wolff is a leading Catholic, but one of his partners, Ottmar Strauss, is a Jewish liberal. Another affiliate of Wolff's was General Schleicher. The rivalry in Germany was something like that between the Morgan and Rockefeller interests in America, except that the Wolff group was known as liberal and the Thyssen group included Flick and Voegeler, political heirs of Hugo Stinnes who had been, Henri says, "perhaps the first National Socialist in Germany."

Stinnes, Hugenberg, Thyssen and other multi-millionaire owners of Germany had never hidden their participation in political movements nor their subsidization of all reactionary anti-labor political parties. These men put their money into the parties of the right wing and were powerful enough at all times to prevent the Social-Democratic Party, which took over the nation (with the aid of the victorious Allies) in 1918 from doing anything radical to aid the majority of the people -- even if the Social-Democrats had sincerely attempted to do so. The historic facts speak for themselves. Germany under Ebert and all the liberal coalitions which preceded the reactionary regimes, which naturally culminated in the advent of big business Fascism, never did more than make gestures towards the working class and permitted joblessness and poverty to increase while the Stinneses and Hugenbergs and Thyssens grew in wealth and power.

Thyssen became interested in Hitler in the year of the Beer Hall Putsch, when Hitler was regarded as a revolver-firing clown who would end up in an insane asylum rather than the chancellor's chair. But Thyssen saw possibilities. In 1927 Thyssen took his partner in the Steel Trust, Voegeler, to Rome, they interviewed Mussolini, and when they returned it was noticeable that the Nazi Party suddenly grew rich and began its march to power.

In 1927 Thyssen joined the Nazi Party officially and began that cooperation with Hitler which led to the latter's overthrow of the Republic in 1933.

"Hitler," writes Henri, "never took an important step without first consulting Thyssen and his friends. Thyssen systematically financed all the election funds of the National Socialist Party. It was he who, by a majority decision and against the most pointed opposition on the part of Otto Wolff and Kloeckner, persuaded the two political centers of German Ruhr capital, the Bergbauverein Essen and the Nordwestgruppe der Eisen-und Stahlindustrie, to agree that every coal and steel concern had, by way of a particular obligatory tax, to deliver a certain sum into the election cash of the National Socialists. In order to raise this money, the price of coal was raised in Germany.

"For the presidential elections of 1932 alone, Thyssen provided the Nazis within a few days with more than 3,000,000 marks. Without this help the fantastic measures resorted to by Hitler in the years 1930-1933 would never have been possible. Without Thyssen's money Hitler would never have achieved such a success, and the party would probably have broken up at the time of the Papen elections at the end of 1932, when it lost 2,000,000 votes and the Strasser group announced its secession. In January, 1933, Schleicher was on the point of hitting the Hitler movement on the head and putting it under his own command. But, just as before Thyssen had raised Hitler by his financial machinery, so now he rescued him by his political machinery.

"To bring off this coup Thyssen employed two of his political friends and agents: Hugenberg (who is one of the directors of the Thyssen Steel Trust group) and Von Papen. In the middle of January a secret meeting between Hitler and Papen was held at Cologne in the house of Baron von Schroeder, partner of the banking House of J. H. Stein, which is closely related with Flick and Thyssen. Although, thanks to an indiscretion, the news of this meeting got into the papers, a few days later, the conspiracy against Schleicher was ready. The allied group, Thyssen-Hitler-Von Papen-Hugenberg, which was backed by the entire German reactionary force, succeeded in drawing to its side the son of President von Hindenburg, Major Oskar von Hindenburg, who had so far stood by his old regimental friend, Schleicher. In this way the sudden fall of Schleicher and the sensational nomination of Hitler came about. Thyssen had won, and Hitler set the scene for his St. Bartholomew's day.

"What's followed was a continual triumph of the capitalistic interests of the Thyssen group. The National Socialist Government of Germany today carries out Thyssen's policy on all matters, as though the entire nation were but a part of the Steel Trust. Every step taken by the new Government corresponds exactly to the private interests of this clique; Stinne's days have returned.

"Thyssen had six main objectives: (1) to secure the Steel Trust for his own group; (2) to save the great coal and steel syndicates, the basis of the entire capitalist system of monopolies in Germany; (3) to eliminate the Catholic and Jewish rival groups and to capture the whole industrial machine for the extreme reactionary wing of heavy industry; (4) to crush the workers and abolish the trade unions, so as to strengthen German competition in the world's markets by means of further wage reductions, etc.; (5) to increase the chances of inflation, in order to devaluate the debts of heavy industry (a repetition of the astute transaction invented by Stinnes in 1923); and finally (6) to initiate a pronouncedly imperialist tendency in foreign politics in order to satisfy the powerful drive for expansion in Ruhr capital. All these items of his programs, without exception, have been, are, or will now be executed by the Hitler government." (The reader must remember that this prediction was written in early 1933, within a few months of Hitler's triumph.)

How did Hitler repay Thyssen? There were general and specific ways. Thyssen was made sub-dictator of Germany (Reichs Minister of Economics), in charge of all industry. The labor problem for Thyssen and all employers of Germany was solved when Hitler abolished the unions, confiscated the union treasuries, reduced labor to a form of serfdom. Specifically, Hitler poured hundreds of millions of dollars into Thyssen's pocketbook by the manipulation of Gelsenkirchener. The new capitalization was 660,000,000 marks instead of 125,000,000. The state, which had owned more than half of Gelsenkirchener, came out holding less than 20% of the new corporation, and Thyssen, who had feared the collapse of his empire, came out king of coal and steel again, and therefore the most powerful industrialist in the land.

Within a few weeks after taking power Hitler used his anti-Semitism for commercial purposes as an aid to his main financial backer, Thyssen. Oscar Wassermann, of the Catholic-Jewish Deutsche Bank, had been chief rival of the Thyssen bankers. Hitler retired him on "grounds of health." Thyssen's one opponent within the Steel Trust, Kloeckner, a Catholic like Thyssen, was forced to resign from the Hitler Reichstag. A charge of corruption was filed against Otto Wolff, who led the financial battle against Thyssen. Goering appointed Thyssen chief representative of private capital in his new Prussian State Council. And, finally, the Fighting League of the Trading Middle Class, the little business men who put up their small money and who went into the streets killing and robbing industrial working men and Jews, was ordered dissolved by Hitler early in 1933 because it might menace the upper class.

It is with especial interest that one reads Henri's conclusion and prediction a full decade after he made it. He said in 1933: "The trade unions have been destroyed. Thyssen can dictate wages through the new 'corporations' and thus reduce still further the prices of export goods in the face of English and American competition. Armaments are being prepared; Thyssen provides the steel. Thyssen needs the Danube markets, where he owns the Alpine Montan-Gesellschaft, the greatest steel producers in Austria. But the primal objective of this new system in Germany has not yet been attained. Thyssen wants war, and it looks as though Hitler may yet provide him with one."

The historic facts are that armaments were being prepared, although the British and French closed their eyes to this fact and believed the promise that they would be used only against Russia; the Nazi army did march into Austria and did unite the Alpine works with their own, and it is also true that Hitler did provide a war, although it was Thyssen's brother, Baron von Thyssen, and Thyssen's partner and successor as head of the Vereinigte Stahlwerke, Voegeler, who reaped the profit, and not Thyssen himself. Naziism paid all its original backers (except one man) and all its present owners colossal profits.

The relation between money and elections was more clearly illustrated in the German elections in the decade of 1923-1933 than in any American elections -- although a volume could be written to prove that the Republican or Democratic Party which wins every four years is the party (with only a very few exceptions) which has the larger number of millions to spend.

"Seven months before he (Hitler) got there (the chancellor's seat) he polled his legitimate maximum of 13,745,781 votes, just over one third of those recorded. Four months later, in the last constitutional Reichstag election, he lost over 2,000,000 votes. That was in November, 1932. The huge Nazi Party was rapidly declining; it had been overblown with millions of mere malcontents, victims of the slump, lured in by desperation rather that Hitler's glib tongue and splendid showmanship. Yet, after the landslide of the November elections, the Party was broke to the wide and in what looked like hopeless dissolution. Hitler moodily (not for the first time nor for the last) threatened suicide. A few weeks later he was in power."

The foregoing statement is from the Fabian Society of Great Britain. It states the situation truthfully. How then explain what followed?

"How had the miracle happened? Goebbels grandly called it 'The National Socialist Revolution'; it was nothing of the kind. It was just a bargain with Big Business and the Junkers. Strong in money, power and influence, but with hardly any popular backing, these vested interests (with arch-intriguer Von Papen as their political representative) were worried by the Schleicher government's threat to expose the worst of their graft; they were even more worried by the possibility of a swing to the Left through a coalition of Schleicher and the Trade Unions. That's why the Papen group, having cold-shouldered the slipping Nazi Party for some time, were now keen on an alliance capable of adding a mass movement to their own financial and industrial power. That's how Hitler got his much-needed cash for his Party and his own appointment as Chancellor in a new Coalition Government."

Hitler's entire history is one of spending big money to build up a party, big money to get millions of votes, and when his backers' money failed to put him in office, he made the conclusive deal with them, finally selling out the great majority who voted for him in the belief he would keep his 26 promises, most of them directed against Big Business, the Junkers and the other enemies of the people.

Hitler's fascist party was never a majority party. In many countries where several political parties exist -- and even in the United States at those times when three major parties are in the field -- the chancellor or president elected to office represents only a minority or the electorate. Nevertheless, it is true that Hitler did succeed in fairly honest times before he was able to use bloodshed and terrorism for his "Ja" elections, in making his the largest of a score of parties.

Why was he able to do this?

There are of course many reasons, notably the disillusion of the nation, national egotism, the natural desire to be a great nation, the psychological moment for a dictator of any party, right or left, economic breakdown, the need of a change, and so forth. But important, if not most important, was the platform of the Nazi party which promised the people what they were hungering for.

It must not be forgotten that the word Nazi stands for national socialist German workers party, and that Hitler, while secretly in the pay of the industrialists who wanted the unions disbanded and labor turned into serfdom, was openly boasting that his was a socialist party -- socialism without Karl Marx -- and a nationalist-socialist party whatever that my mean. But it did mean a great deal to millions. The followers of Marxian socialism in Germany, split into several parties, would if united constitute the greatest force in the nation, and socialism and labor were almost synonymous in Germany. Hitler knew this. He capitalized on it. He stole the word.

Hitler was able to get thirteen million followers before 1933 by a pseudo-socialistic reform program and by great promises of aid to the common people. In the 26 points of the Nazi platform, adopted in 1920 and never repudiated, Hitler promised the miserable people of Germany:

1. The abolition of all unearned incomes.

2. The end of interest slavery. This was aimed against all bankers, not only Jewish bankers.

3. Nationalization of all joint-stock companies. This meant the end of all private industry, not only the monopolies but all big business.

4. Participation of the workers in the profits of all corporations -- the mill, mine, factory, industrial worker was to become a part owner of industry.

5. Establishment of a sound middle class. Naziism, like Italian Fascism, made a great appeal to the big middle class, the small business man, the millions caught between the millstones of Big Business and labor. The big department stores, for example, were to be smashed. This promise delighted every small shopkeeper in Germany. Bernard Shaw once said that Britain was a nation of shopkeepers. This was just as true for Germany -- and German shopkeepers were more alive politically. They were for Hitler's Naziism to a man -- and they supplied a large number of his murderous S.S. and S.A. troops.

6. Death penalty for usurers and profiteers.

7. Distinction between "raffendes" and "schaffendes" capital -- between predatory and creative capital.

This was the Gregor Strasser thesis: that there were two kinds of money, usury and profiteering money on one hand, and creative money on the other, and that the former had to be eliminated. Naturally all money-owners who invested in the Nazi Party were listed as creative capitalists, whereas the Jews (some of whom incidentally invested in Hitler) and all who opposed Hitler were listed as exploiters.

The vast middle class, always caught between the aspirations of the still more vast working class and cruel greed of the small but most powerful ruling class, has throughout history made the mistake of allying itself with the latter. In America we have the same thing: all the real fascist movements are subsidized by Big Money, but powerful organizations, such as the National Small Business Men's Association, follow the program of the NAM in the hope they will benefit financially when the Ruling Families benefit.

In all instances, however, history shows us that when the latter take over a country with a fascist army they may give the middle class privileges, benefits, a chance to earn larger profits for a while, but in the end monopoly triumphs, and the Big Money drives the Little Money into bankruptcy.

This is one of the many important facts which Albert Norden presented in his most impressive pamphlet The Thugs of Europe, a documentary exposé of the profits in Naziism taken entirely from Nazi sources. My thanks are due to Mr. Norden -- a German writer who escaped to America and who went to work in a war plant recently -- for permission to quote some of the evidence. Norden takes up the matter of Naziism and its promises to the middle class:

"If the Third Reich were for the common man, the middle-class would not have been sacrificed to the Moloch of Big Business. If the Third Reich were for the common man, the banks and industries and resources of the sub-soil would belong to the people and not be the private affair of a few score old and newly rich.... As it is now, it is the rich man's Reich. That is why there is such a widespread underground anti-Nazi movement among the German people.

"This war is being waged by the Third Reich, the heart of the Axis, as a 'struggle of German Socialism against the plutocracies.' Goebbels has duped millions of young Germans with this slogan. Not only that: Nazi propaganda outside Germany and particularly in North and South America has succeeded in recruiting trusted followers with this slogan....

"The Nazi theory of a struggle of the Have-nots against the so-called 'sated' nations is as true as the myth that Goebbels is an Aryan and Goering a Socialist! The following facts, taken from official German statistics, prove that in the Third Reich there is a boundless dictatorship of the plutocrats; that a small group of magnates in the banking, industrial and chemical world had taken hold of the entire economic apparatus at the expense of the broad sections of medium and small manufacturers, artisans, storekeepers and workers, and are making unprecedented profits.

"In his program Hitler promised the middle class preference in all government jobs, abolition of interest on loans, breaking of the power of the trusts and cartels, and dividing up the department stores. Each of these points could only have been carried out at the expense of finance-capital to which Hitler had made definite commitments which, in turn, spell ruin for the middle class and workers.... The Kampfbund des Gewerblichen Mittlestandes, a Nazi organization ... had been schooled to destroy Marxism. Everywhere they had killed Socialists and Communists, demolished workers' headquarters and trade union offices. Now that Hitler had triumphed they wanted to reap the fruits. But the Nazi leaders offered them cheap laurels instead -- laurels which pleased neither their senses nor their pocketbooks....

"Never yet in modern history has the middle class, relying solely on itself and without an alliance with other social strata, successfully played an independent role or triumphed in the social struggle.... The Nazi leaders did not hesitate one moment in their decision when the big industrialists and bankers began to complain. One after another, Hitler, Goering and Hess in May, June and July, 1933 -- issued sharp warnings against 'attacks on business'; and Hess ordered all activities against department stores to cease.... Already by August, 1933, the high hopes which millions of little people had pinned on Hitler had been rudely shattered.... Leaders of the struggle of the middle class against the trusts ... were sent to concentration camps. Before the month had ended the Fighting League of the Middle Class was no more.... The massacre of the entire leadership of the Storm Troopers on the pretext of homosexuality closed the short chapter of independent action by the middle class with a smashing political victory by Big Capital.... The department store of the Jewish owner Tietz was handed over to a consortium consisting of the three largest banks, the Deutsche Bank, the Dresdener Bank and the Commerz-und Privatbank.... The large department store Karstadt ... of its eight directors four are big bankers, one a large exporter and a sixth an influential figure in the Deutsche Bank....

"The more Jews were dragged off and murdered in concentration camps, the richer Germany's magnates became. They let the S.S. and S.A. mobs riot and trample all human laws under their hobnail boots -- meanwhile the Dresdener Bank acquired the Berlin bank of Bleichroeder (Jewish bank, patronized by the former Kaiser) and Arnhold Bros. (Jewish bank, one of the best banks in Germany, patronized by U.S. Embassy and newspapers); the Deutsche Bank seized the Mendelssohn Bank. In the Berliner Handelsgesellschaft, an important private bank, Herbert Goering, a relative of Marshal Hermann Goering, replaced the Jewish partner Fuerstenberg. The Warburg Bank in Hamburg was taken over by the Deutsche Bank and the Dresdener Bank in conjunction with the Montan Combine of Haniel and the Siemens Trust. The latter also took out of Jewish hands the Cassierer Cable Works... The armaments kings of the Ruhr did not shrink from profiting from the pogroms. As a result of Hitler's persecution of the Jews, the Mannesmann concern received the metal company of Wolff, Netter & Jacobi, and the Hahnschen Works; while the big industrialist Friedrich Flick (one of the dozen men who put up most of the money to establish Naziism), today one of the 20 richest men in the Third Reich, seized the metal company of Rawak and Gruenfeld. This list could be expanded at will. It illustrates the prosperous business which the solidly established German trusts acquired as a result of the infamous crimes against the Jews. Together with the top Nazi leaders these German financial magnates were the main beneficiaries of the sadistic persecution of the Jews....

"Moreover, the turnover tax on big business was reduced to one-half per cent on all commodities, while for little business it was raised to 2 per cent. The decree establishing price ceilings was eliminated so that Big Business under Hitler was able to raise prices on numerous occasions. Thus in two years immediately preceding the outbreak of the present war, tens of thousands of small businessmen were able to get prices which just barely covered their own costs, and sometimes were even lower. That is why small businesses were liquidated on a mass scale in Germany... The government of the Third Reich, a long time before the outbreak of the war, had passed the death-sentence on over one million members of the middle class, and carried it out, thus profiting the wealthiest sections of German finance-capital.... The result is inevitably the same: a blood-letting without parallel and impoverishment all along the line. Hitler's regime of a 'people's community' and elimination of the class struggle has hastened, as no previous regime has done, the crystallization of classes in German society, dealing terrible blows to the middle class and favoring the upper ten thousand in striking fashion. In ten years of the Nazi regime the lower middle class in Germany has been more ruined and declassed than in the preceding 50 years.

"In 1932 a tremendous scandal exploded in Germany. It concerned the so-called Osthilfe, government subsidies destined for the needy farmers.... Among the beneficiaries were the House of Hohenzollern and the President of the Republic, Field Marshal von Hindenburg, whose East Prussian property of Neudeck was involved in tax frauds. Hitler promised to suppress the entire scandal if he became Chancellor of the Reich. The interests of the aristocracy and of the munitions-kings, whose war-mongering appetites were whetted by the appointment of Hitler, coincided. So Hindenburg covered over his scandal of corruption with his disgraceful appointment of Hitler as chancellor.

"Today the princes and their followers among the nobility are still the largest landowners in Germany. Three thousand aristocrats own 2,630,000 hectares (1 hectare equals 2.47 acres) of agriculturally tilled land. On the other hand 3,000,000 families of small farmers -- 60% of all those occupied in agriculture -- own together only 1,500,000 hectares. 0.15% of the landowners each possessing 5,000 hectares own altogether 10,100,000 hectares or almost 40% of the entire land under cultivation.... 412 Junkers owned as much land as 1,000,000 peasants (Darre admitted this).

"The Reichstag deputies in their S.S., S.A. and army uniforms raised their arms and shouted Heil for several minutes as Hitler told them, after the outbreak of war in September, 1939: 'No one will make money out of this war.' One lie more or less makes no difference to Hitler. The fact is, the profits of the upper 10,000 in Germany have reached astronomical proportions in this war. To detect these profits, however, one must know how to read between the lines of company reports.... German industry wrote off 'between a half and one billion marks' above the normal amount for reserves, etc., during the period just before the outbreak of the war. This is a clear case of concealing profits....

"Exactly 24 hours before Hitler's armies attacked the Soviet Union the Nazi newspapers published a decree that was intended to prove the Socialist character of the Third Reich and to incite German soldiers to fight the 'bolshevik-plutocratic world conspiracy.' This decree called for a compulsory payment to the State of dividends that exceeded 6%. As if by magic the stock companies immediately began to increase their capital. They did not have to lay claim to their bank credits, but simply converted their hidden profits, their secret and open reserves, into additional capital. Thus the dividends decreased in percentage but remained the same in actual profit. By May, 1942, 883 stock companies had already increased their capital from 4,900,000,000 to 7,800,000,000 marks by making use of their concealed profits.... Baron von Thyssen-Bornemisza, Fritz Thyssen's older brother ... increased the capital of one of his companies, the Duesseldorger Press und Walzwerk to 3 times its former amount. Thus, when he pays 5% dividends now they correspond in cold cash to 15%...."

Another pamphlet which exposes the profits in Naziism is The Economics of Barbarism by J. Kuczynski and M. Witt, who, after showing how by violence and by illegal means disguised as legal the Germans have seized the wealth of all occupied Europe, arrive at the conclusion that "The European continent in the hands of German monopoly means the end of the United States as a great economic power. It is the first step towards the enslavement of the Americas."

The Nazi plan, after taking over all of Europe, has been to use monopoly capital to reduce imports permanently and to increase the volume of cheap exports rapidly. German monopoly would exclude American goods from all markets except within the two Americas at first, then enter the South and Central American markets as a formidable competitor and eventually, with the aid of Japan, to exclude the United States and England from both the Asiatic and British Empire markets. All this of course based on a victory of the Fascist International.

The three principles of fascist economic strategy, according to these authors, are:

1. To achieve the economic subjugation of a conquered nation it is essential to control the heavy industries. The first principle of Nazi economic strategy: keep intact, build up, and above all else, take into their own hands the heavy industries.

2. Fascist economy centers on war production. Since it has no interest in the welfare of the masses of people and prefers to depress wages of workers and farmers and lower their standard of living, goods for popular consumption are of secondary importance. Since all the big industrialists are linked with Fascism, it is a policy to give the consumer goods manufacturers a monopoly for all Europe. There is therefore a tendency towards decentralization in the heavy industries, with centralization in Germany of consumer goods industry. The Nazi principle is: kill consumption goods industries outside Germany.

3. The third principle is to increase the numbers of millions dependent upon agriculture with a corresponding increase in the holdings of the great landed proprietors. This pays back the Junkers who financed Hitler, provides materials for the chemical industry and profits the same industry in the sale of artificial fertilizers, and furthers the policy of complete self-independence or autarchy.

These principles of barbarism, conclude the authors, would, if realized, "put back the technical and economic structure of certain parts of Europe a hundred years or more, while overdeveloping economy in other parts of the continent."

The pamphlet, written before America was attacked by Japan, warns our country that Fascism is an epidemic disease, and that we cannot escape.

So far as this writer knows, the only publication of any kind -- book, pamphlet, newspaper story, radio address, etc. -- which shows the relationship between Big Business in America and the international fascist system, is to be found in the works of Prof. Robert A. Brady. The serious student of Fascism must read both books listed below.

The relationship of the big money system to the Fascist Party itself is more clearly shown in what happened in Italy than anywhere else. Let us look beyond the Alps.



Fritz Thyssen, I Paid Hitler, Farrar & Rinehart, 1941.
Week-End Review, London, August 5 and 12, 1933.
Fabian Society, London, Tract Series No. 254, p. 5.
Albert Norden, The Thugs of Europe, German American League for Culture, 45 Astor Place, New York City.
J. Kuczynski and M. Witt, The Economics of Barbarism, International Publishers, New York.
Robert A. Brady, The Spirit and Structure of German Fascism, Viking Press, 1937; Business as a System of Power, Columbia University Press, 1943.
The Theory of Capitalist Development, by Paul M. Sweezey, Oxford University Press, 1943.
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:02 am


THE FIRST modern fascist regime is the Italian. (Fascism itself is as old as history, and although Mussolini is a colossal liar, he told the truth for once when he defined Fascism as Reaction.)

Who put up the money for Mussolini?

Why did they invest in Fascism?

How were they repaid, and who footed the bill?

The original Fascist Party of Italy, likewise the Nazi Party which was formed almost at the same time, was subsidized by a handful of the richest industrialists and landowners who wanted to preserve their wealth and power and prevent the majority of people from living a better life. (The American Legion was organized for the same reason: to preserve the privileges of the few and fool the millions who believed better things would come after victory.)

Here is the complete list of main subsidizers of Mussolini's Fascism -- (compiled from fascist, neutral and anti- fascist sources, including Prezzolini, Salvemini, Bolitho and Prof. Robert A. Brady) -- and their American equivalents:

1. Lega Industriale of Turin. The American equivalent is the Associated Industries of Cleveland (also A. I. of Florida, Mass., Missouri, New York and Utah). Anti-labor organizations, corrupters of the free press, employers of spies, racketeers and murderers as strikebreakers, users of poison gas, all exposed by the La Follette Committee.

2. Confederazione Generale dell'Industria. The nearest equivalent is the National Association of Manufacturers, which has some 8,000 members but which is run by a small group of men, including the DuPonts, who have subsidized the worst native fascist outfits in America. The NAM works "in secrecy and by deceit," according to the final La Follette report, employs prostitute college professors, prostitute preachers, and prostitute journalists. (Mussolini is the most famous prostitute journalist of our time; he sold out to the French government for 50,000 francs a month. Documentation in Sawdust Caesar.)

3. Associazione fra Industriali Metallurgici Mecannici ed Affini. Similar to the Iron & Steel Institute, operated by our steel barons, including Weir and Girdler, one of whom employed the columnist George E. Sokolsky, the other the idol of Westbrook Pegler.

4. Fiat Automobile Works. Similar to General Motors, largest stockholder of which is DuPonts which is also the largest subsidizer of most native fascist organizations.

5. Societa Ansaldo (shipbuilders); Fiume Oil Corp.; Venezia Giulia steel furnaces; Upper-Italy Hydroelectric Works; and other big outfits. (Equivalents in NAM leadership.)

6. Ente Nazionale per le Industrie Turistiche and Grandi Alberghi associations. No equivalents in the U.S., these being the tourist bureau and the hotelkeepers' association, both more interested in having the trains run on time than the trainmen eating on time -- or at all.

7. Landowners Association, chairmanned by Senator Tittoni. U.S. equivalent: Associated Farmers. The Italian outfit consists of feudal landlords, the superwealthy of the nation and is the cause of poverty and starvation among the farming population of Italy. The U.S. outfit includes the packers and canners who control the Farm Bloc in Congress, constitute the Farm Lobby, and are in reality manufacturers of food and the enemies of the homestead farmer.

8. Banca Commerciale of Milan, Banca Italiana di Sconto, and other leading banks, the equivalent of the Chase, National City, Guaranty Trust and other banks which have spread dollar imperialism in Mexico, Cuba, and the rest of Latin America.

As early as 1923 the fascist Prezzolini wrote:

"During the days of the coup d'etat Mussolini's hotel was literally besieged by the most notorious speculators of northern Italy. The Confederazione Generale dell'Industria published a communique in which it claimed to have played an active part in the solution of the crises ... the Perrone brothers, formerly heads of the Ansaldo Company and of the Banca Italiana di Sconto, who had dropped out of sight after the panic of 1921, have come to life again."

Italia reported (November 1, 1931) that the subsidizers of Fascism included the brothers Perrone, Pogliani, Borletti, Odero and Mazzotti of Fondi Rustici and the Isotta auto works. Borletti, a textile manufacturer and owner of the Rinascente department store, also subsidized d'Annunzio in the Fiume adventure. Concludes Italia: "In 1931 among the richest men in Italy were the Fascists who had had the good sense to put considerable money in foreign issues or send them abroad, notably C. Volpi, Arnaldo Mussolini, M. Ciano, Balbo and Beneduce."

Bolitho reported (Manchester Guardian and New York World in the early 1920's) that when De Vecchi burned the liberal newspaper Avanti in Rome "this for the first time gave the Fascists general press notice and attracted the attention of great capitalist bodies, the Lega Industriale ... Associazione fra Industrali ... Confederazione Generale dell'Industria. ... This latter body openly, the rest credibly, have continued to be the biggest subscribers to Fascist funds. ... Those shrewd fellows of the Confederazione dell'Industria, the factory owners' organization of Milan, whose generosity is visible though discreet, at every stage of Fascism's progress, through Benni and Gino Olivetti managed to induce Mussolini and the (Fascist) Grand Council to accept 25,000,000 lire for the purpose of the Party, in its conquest of the South."

Mussolini was subsidized by the Italian equivalent of our NAM and similar Big Money outfits shortly after the seizure of the factories in 1920.

In March, 1919, fascist agitators caused the workers to seize the Franchi-Gregorini plant. Mussolini called this a "creative strike," because the workers intended to run the plant for their own benefit. One of Mussolini's colleagues wrote: "At Dalmine he was the Lenin of Italy." At this time Mussolini was trying to get back into the labor movement.

When the factories of Milan and Turin were occupied by the workers Mussolini held a conference with Bruno Buozzi, who then held a place equivalent to that of Sam Gompers in our American Federation of Labor. He proposed using the factory occupation as the beginning of a military movement to seize Rome and establish a dictatorship of the proletariat. Buozzi indignantly kicked Mussolini out -- labor believed in the democratic political processes, and the main proof was that not an act of violence marked the factory seizures, although the press of the world for a month ran daily lies of bloodshed and terrorism.

Within a few days Mussolini had sold the same idea to the owners of the occupied factories -- only this time the same Blackshirts were to be used to create a dictatorship of Big Business, rather than of workers. Signor Agnelli, head of Fiat, admitted to Buozzi that Mussolini actually had dealt with Olivetti, of the Confederaziene dell'Industria, while dealing with Buozzi. (This document in Chapter VIII of Sawdust Caesar.) Olivetti and company put up the money. Mussolini took Rome. And in payment to the subsidizers his first important act was the abolition of all labor unions -- the equivalent of our A. F. of L., C. I. O. and Railroad Brotherhoods.

From the day he became dictator Mussolini began paying back the men who paid him in 1920. He abolished the tax on inheritance, for example, because it was supposed to end big fortunes, and that of course meant loss of money for the rich, who had in a body gone over to Fascism after 1922. But Mussolini did not have the courage to abolish the political democratic system all at once, and he had many opposition parties which criticized and attacked him. His chief opponent was the Socialist deputy Matteotti.

The reason Matteotti had to die was because he committed the one unforgivable crime in a Fascist nation: he exposed the profits in Fascism.

There is no program, no policy, no ideology and certainly no philosophy back of Fascism, as there is back of almost every other form of government. It is nothing but a spoils system. We too in America have a spoils system, which is talked about every four years when a President is elected, and sometimes when a governor is elected, but this refers largely to a few jobs, a little graft, a considerable payoff for the boys in the back room of politics. It is also true that we in America have ruling families, men and corporations who put up most of the money for elections, and do not do so because one candidate has baby blue eyes and the other is beetle-browed. It is done for money, and the investors in politics are repaid. But Fascism is a system whereby a handful of ruling families get the entire nation.

It was Matteotti who discovered in 1924 that Mussolini, who had "marched" to Rome in a Pullman sleeper in 1922, was beginning to pay back the secret forces which had paid the money to put Fascism in power.

On May 27th, a few days before he was kidnapped and assassinated by Mussolini's gangsters and family friends, Matteotti denounced in the Italian parliament a law which would have given a monopoly in oil to the Sinclair firm -- the same corporation run by Harry Sinclair which was involved in the filthy muck of the Teapot Dome Scandal, and incidentally the same Harry Sinclair who told Dorothy Thompson that he and his associates put up most of the money to buy the Presidency of the United States every four years.

On June 10, 1924, when the entire front pages of the American press were given over to the Loeb-Leopold case in Chicago, Matteotti was killed by Mussolini's own orders, and not a line appeared in most newspapers. On the 16th Arnaldo, brother of the Duce, printed a warning in his Popolo d'ltalia against public clamor for an investigation of the murder, saying such a request was in reality a demand that Mussolini abdicate. But the London Daily Herald told the truth. Matteotti, having challenged the Sinclair oil deal, had prepared a documentary expose proving that Balbo, Grandi, Arnaldo, Mussolini himself and the biggest men in the Fascist government had been engaged in a tremendous graft and corruption deal in relation to the oil monopoly.

For all this the Undersecretary of Home Affairs, Finzi, was made the scapegoat; the evidence was plain that he was among the grafters, and as he was also one of the big financial profiteers of a Fascist law legalizing gambling, he resigned in an uproar. In apology the Roman press said that "thousands of jailbirds have joined the Fascist Party since the March on Rome," and that Finzi was not a good party member.

Finzi was a small shot. Matteotti was using the Sinclair oil graft scandal to hit at the big shots, and the Fascists were throwing Finzi to the mob to save the real profiteers of the system. Matteotti had prepared a documentation which showed that the big bankers, the great industrial baronies such as Ansaldo, the great landowners and the war profiteers who had made billions while Italy hungered, were to be given the wealth of Italy. Here is a small part of Matteotti's documentation:

Ansaldo: A decree-law of June 14, 1923, supplied national funds for refloating this private corporation whose owners had been chiefly responsible for the bankruptcy of the Banca di Sconto, The Fascist regime, with 72,000,000 lire (against 78,000,000 lire worth of shares given the creditors), became almost half owner; it also took a mortgage for 41,500,000 lire.

Fascism subsidized the Ansaldo shipbuilding company at 900 lire a ton.

It gave Ansaldo 230 locomotives for repair, without accepting competitive bids.

Plume Mineral Oil Refining Company. On April 29, 1923, the Fascist State purchased 18,000 shares of this corporation for 8,300,443 lire. It made itself party to the success of this private firm. Among the new directors the State put on the governing board were three of the "Fascists of the first hour," Dino Grandi, Massimo Rocca and Iginio Magrini.

Banking Houses: The Banca di Roma was in the same straits as the Sconto. When the latter failed it appealed to Mussolini as a friend and subsidizer of the Fascist movement, and Musso the Duce repaid the directors by bypassing the old law requiring them to make good the bank's losses. One of the men who profited most was a certain Senator Marconi, member of the board of the Sconto, who suddenly joined the Fascist Party in October, 1923. In November, Matteotti showed, he was relieved of the financial burden of putting up his fortune to repay the poor devils who had trusted the Sconto and lost all their money. This is, of course, the same Marconi who claimed he had invented the radio -- a claim disputed by several. That Marconi made a fortune in wireless is beyond dispute.

War Profiteers: Every nation had a war profiteering scandal after 1918. Mussolini, in his demagogic orations in which he promised everything to everybody, said that he would take back every cent the profiteers made. At the very time he was saying this, Mussolini, as Matteotti later revealed, was accepting big money from the very same profiteers for organizing his Blackshirts and outfitting them with castor oil, clubs and revolvers.

The various regimes before October, 1922, had begun the investigation of the war profiteering frauds and several suits resulted in large sums being regained. Mussolini had denounced these suits as slow, the sums returned as small: he promised quick suits and complete confiscation of all the property of the war profiteers. On November 19, 1922, less than a month after he took office, Mussolini with a sweep of his pen wrote Decree No. 1487 which abolished the Committee of Enquiry into War Profiteering, and the crooks who paid for his election were relieved of all worry.

Railroads: The Societa Italiana per le F. S. del Mediterraneo, a private railway line, was granted treasury bonds up to 100,000,000 lire by Decree 1386 of June 17, 1923. A concession for the construction of 80 kilometers of Sicilian railroads was granted two important Fascist industrialists, Nicolini and Romano; the cost of the work was to be about a billion lire, and no government returns, rights, or privileges were asked. It was purely a big payoff to early subsidizers of Fascism.

Peasant Lands: On this subject an entire book could be written. The whole history of early Fascism centers upon this problem. As early as November, 1918, and internationally in the days of the peace Conference of Versailles, the promises of "land for the returning soldiers" were being made by leading statesmen of the world, and notably by Giolitti, Orlando, Sonnino and other Italians. But in most lands there was no public domain, and little land available at a small price. There was, on the other hand, a feudal system -- it still exists in fascist countries such as Poland, Hungary, Rumania, etc. -- where a few land barons were even more powerful nationally than the industrial barons of the mills, mines and factories.

From Armistice Day to the "March" on Rome there had been a slight agrarian reform in Italy and considerable seizure of land by impoverished and dispossessed peasants. Mussolini in his (fake) radical days had urged the returned soldiers and the landless farmers to seize the estates of the wealthy. At this time a new movement arose, the Populari, or Catholic Popular Party, led by the priest Don Luigi Sturzo, which had as its chief aim the restoration of land to the farmers. However, whenever some of his restless and impatient followers seized some land, Don Sturzo would get together some money and make a settlement with the owner, because he was a strict legalitarian.

A study of the history of early Fascism shows that it concentrated its violence and its oratory against the Catholic Party, not against the Left. It was not until Mussolini hired an American press agent in 1925 to help float the Morgan $100,000,000 loan and the Dillon, Read & Co. loans to the municipalities, that the myth of "fighting Bolshevism" was invented to please Wall Street. There was a tiny, ineffective Communist Party in Italy, and a large and powerful Socialist Party with which Mussolini could do (and did) business. But Mussolini could not appease the Populari of Don Sturzo, and he could not do anything to stop the agrarian reform movement. As Bolitho wrote in 1925: "The enemy was not, however, the Communists, but the Catholic peasants of Don Luigi Sturzo's People's Party which was preaching seizure of land."

The landowners (and the industrial owners) were Mussolini's chief backers. No one knew of the subsidies he had received from the great estates. Immediately on becoming dictator Mussolini granted his first important interview to the press of the world. He said:

"I love the working classes. The supremest ambition and the dearest hope of my life has been, and is still, to see them better treated and enjoying conditions of life worthy of the citizens of a great nation. ... I do not believe in the class war, but in cooperation between classes. The Fascist government will devote all its efforts to the creation of an agrarian democracy based on the principle of small ownership. The great estates must be handed over to peasant communities; the great capitalists of agriculture must submit to a process of harmonization of their rights with those of the peasants."

This interview was printed in America on November 15, 1922, but on January 11, 1923, less than two months later, Mussolini issued a decree-law which dispossessed all the small peasants who since the war had settled on the seized lands of the "latifundia" of the great landowners. Needless to say, there has been no agrarian reform, no division of estates into small holdings, no "harmonization" of "the great capitalists of agriculture." The landowners were paid off with a return of all land which had been given the landless and by the employment of the Blackshirt Militia which prevented any further attempts to divide the land.

Mussolini's one stroke in issuing this decree-law restored more profits to more Fascists than probably any act in the totalitarian history of that land.

Although Mussolini himself had not laid up a cent -- or a million dollars -- as has Hitler, he has made it possible for all "Fascists of the first hour," be they bankers or burglars, to make all the money possible out of his success.

Dumini, the actual murderer of Matteotti, was given vast sums of money by Mussolini and the Fascist Party. Cesare Rossi, one of the founders of the party, was granted the right to sell concessions to foreigners. It was Rossi whom Matteotti was to expose as dealing with the Sinclair Oil Company for the oil monopoly. The graft was to be shared between him and Filippelli and Marinelli, also implicated in the assassination, and because the others tried to make him the scapegoat Rossi wrote confessions which were later published.

In its July, 1934, issue, a song of praise for Fascism, Fortune magazine (owned by Henry Luce, a Morgan partner, and other powerful and wealthy Americans) told of the great corporations and how they progressed under Mussolini. Montecatini, for example, was listed as having assets of $77,000,000; it consumes 10% of the nation's electricity, it is managed by Guido Donegani, with funds from the Banca Commerciale Italiana. Donegani is "a fascist from the very beginning." Montecatini owns 51% of Acna chemical company, and I.G. Farben, the Hitler cartel, the other 49%.

Signor Giovanni Agnelli, manager of Fiat, is "one of the financial backers of the march on Rome, he stands high in Fascist councils and has been a senator since Anno I of Fascismo. He owns La Stampa, the leading Turin newspaper. ..."

Riccardo Gualino of Snia Viscosa, occupies the same place in Fascism-for-money history as the bankers and industrialists who backed Hitler and whom Hitler purged. But Fortune in 1934 reported: "Along with Agnelli of Fiat and several other big capitalists, Gualino helped finance the march on Rome and in the early years of Fascism flourished mightily." He went to jail later along with other Fascist notables who resorted to common swindling in addition to the legal Fascist way of draining the nation of its wealth.

Martini & Rossi, the vermouth and cocktail lords, is run by Count Napoleon Rossi di Montelara, a member of the Fascist party.

Fratelli Alberto and Pietro Pirelli own a $10,000,000 company which in 1933 made a net profit of $1,500,000 thanks to Mussolini's help. The Pirellis control 39 joint stock companies with a capital of 7,818,000,000 lire. Agnelli controls 32 such corporations with a capital of 1,890,000,000 lire. Senator Ettore Conti, president of the Banca Commerciale -- the bank once headed by Giuseppi Toeplitz, one of the many fascist Jews who supported Mussolini, and who was treasurer and cashier for Fascism -- controls 18 firms with a capital of 3,474,000,000 lire.

"The significant facts to hang on to," concluded Fortune, "are these: if you were an early Fascist, or contributed generously to the March on Rome, you are likely to enjoy the business benefits that accrue to a high position within the Fascist Party."

Curiously enough Fortune (and Luce's other publications, Time and Life) which had a long record (before Pearl Harbor) of applauding Fascismo, will not even now print any news which would in any way indicate that there is at least a slight resemblance between the former object of their affection, and the constant love of their lives, the American Big Business equivalent of the Fascist industrial system.

Ever since Pearl Harbor courage is not required to speak out against faraway Fascism. The Scripps-Howard papers, which are under the reactionary rule of a man who never got over the fact he was permitted to kowtow to the Emperor of Japan; the Hearst papers, which had a deal with the Nazi press and which published signed propaganda articles of Goering, Goebbels and Co., Patterson's New York Daily News, which said "Let's Appease Japan" because Japan was a good customer, and which favored betraying China because China did not put as much money into American pockets as the Hirohito regime, America's most influential newspaper, the New York Times, was friendly to Mussolini, employed Italian Fascists as correspondents, played up the news from Franco's side, turned against the New Deal, attacked the Wagner Act, and still represents Reaction, have used flaring headlines against the three brands of Fascism which rule the three chief enemy countries. But there are surely not a half dozen newspapers -- perhaps not even three -- which have ever had the courage to show the relationship between foreign and domestic Fascism.

America's most influential newspaper, the New York Times, was friendly to Mussolini, employed Italian Fascists as correspondents, played up the news from Franco's side, turned against the New Deal, attacked the Wagner Act, and still represents Reaction.

You will have to read the free and independent press, which is largely the press of small unbribed weeklies, and a few pamphlets and books to get the truth. The truth is not in the commercial press because the truth is a dagger pointed at its heart, which is its pocketbook. Native American Fascism is largely the policy of the employers of gangsters, stoolpigeons, labor spies, poison gas, and anti-labor propaganda; it is the fascism of the NAM, the Associated Farmers and Associated Industries, the Christian American Association; the KKK, the Committee for Constitutional Government, the Constitutional Educational League, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the old Liberty League and its present subsidized outfits, and the Royal Family which unfortunately controls the American Legion.

In addition to the books and pamphlets given in the documentation at the conclusion of this chapter, the following statement made by Professor Gaetano Salvemini of Harvard is noteworthy. Professor Salvemini told Reporter Joseph Philip Lyford of the undergraduate daily that "a new brand of Fascism" threatens America, "the Fascism of corporate business enterprise in this country." He believed that "almost 100% of American Big Business" is in sympathy with the "philosophy" of government behind the totalitarianism of Hitler and Mussolini; the bond of sympathy between Big Business and the Fascist Axis, said the professor of history, lies in the respect of American industrialists for the Axis methods of coercing labor.

There are two means which the industrialist can employ to crush labor, Professor Salvemini explained; one way is to hire strikebreakers to "crack the workers' skulls," the other way is to pass a law outlawing strikes, "Mussolini has used both methods in Italy," Professor Salvemini asserted; "in America Big Business has only been able to use the first." But business is definitely sympathetic to anti-strike legislation, he added, and compared the organization of the Ford plant at River Rouge to the organization of the Fascist auto industry, and the strikebreaking methods used by Ford there to those which had been used by Italian industry to crush the workers on the eve of Mussolini's rise to power.

Salvemini's statement, based on Italian Fascism, paralleled the statement which Ambassador Dodd made on returning to America from Germany. Both these men noted the relationship between foreign Fascism and American business monopolies and the handful of super-industrialists who rule most countries for their own profit.



William Bolitho, Italy Under Mussolini,. New York World dispatches, 1925.
Giacomo Matteotti, The Fascists Exposed, London, 1924.
Gaetano Salvemini, The Fascist Dictatorship.
Harvard Crimson, April 22, 1940.
George Seldes, Sawdust Caesar, Harpers, 1935.
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:06 am


EVERY Japanese gun, bullet, torpedo, ship and airplane that has killed or wounded an American soldier, sailor, airman or marine has meant actual cash money in the pocket of Emperor Hirohito.

When the "merchants of death," the armaments manufacturers who had a financial interest in waging previous wars, and who still do in fascist dictatorships, were exposed in 1934, it was found that Mitsui and Mitsubishi were the Japanese members of the cartel, and that the reigning family was a large stockholder in both.

Hirohito owns 3,800,000 acres of land with all the buildings on them, many being tenements from which he makes a rent; the total value when the yen was still 50¢ was estimated at 637,234,000 yen. The son of the Sun Goddess has also invested 300,000,000 yen in the Bank of Japan, the South Manchuria Railroad, the Yokohama Specie Bank, Nippon Yusen Kaisha (the shipping line of the Mitsubishi firm), the Imperial Hotel of Tokyo) and Mitsui and Mitsubishi enterprises.

In the wave of disillusion which swept over the world after the Treaty of Versailles and proved that the old march of the imperialists would be resumed and that all international idealism (Woodrow Wilson's for example) would be destroyed, many secrets were uncovered and one of the most sensational was that concerning the international of blood -- the cartels of the merchants of death, the armaments makers, who made a profit on the guns, the shells and the bullets. The manufacturing corporations in many instances were found linked to governments and to have arranged, even in wartime, for the continuance of their dividends and distribution of their profits.

There were several hundred members of the cartels, but only fifty were powerful and of these the handful which influenced world events and formed the Harvey United Steel Co. cartel, the Nobel Dynamite Trust, the various rifle, gunpowder and similar cartels were: Krupp in Germany, Vickers-Armstrong in Britain, Schneider Creusot in France, Skoda in Austria-Hungary, Terni-Ansaldo in Italy, Mitsui in Japan and the Bethlehem Steel Company and DuPont Empire in the United States. Charles M. Schwab's Bethlehem held 4,301 shares in the Harvey cartel. Albert Vickers was chairman.

It should be noted here that just as American Big Business was found at the time of the first World War to be linked to Japanese Big Business through the Harvey cartel, Nobel international trust and other agencies, so just before the outbreak of the Global War it was discovered that the international of money was even stronger than ever. One of the links was the I.G. Farbenindustrie, which Hitler and Goering controlled and which involved Standard Oil, Standard Drug, General Motors, General Electric and other of our greater corporations.

Just as American Big Business was linked to Japan through the Harvey combine (steel), the Nobel Dynamite Trust (munitions) and the other munitions cartels before the last war, so before the Global War there were the usual international cartels in which both the U.S. and Japan shared with Germany, Italy and other nations.

In addition, according to the San Francisco journalist John Pittman, "among the owners of Japanese business are International General Electric, which operates plants through its subsidiary, Tokyo Shibaura; Westinghouse Electric International, associated with Mitsubishi Electric Manufacturing Co.; Tide Water Associated Oil, handled by Mitsubishi; Libby-Owens-Ford, represented by the Nippon Plate Glass Co.; Standard Oil, with a known direct investment of $5,000,000, exclusive of frozen credits and oil in storage; Ford, and General Motors, with approximately $10,000,000 sunk in Japan proper; Eastman Kodak, and Singer Sewing Machine, with big organizations in the Japanese Empire; United Engineering & Foundry Co., holding a large stake in Shibaura-United Engineering Co.

"Besides these shares in the industry of Japan proper, American capital is heavily invested in Manchukuo and other exploitation companies of a Japanese origin scattered throughout the Far East."

In Japan one of Mitsui's partly owned corporations is the Nippon Steel Works, but this firm was controlled by Vickers. Their French connection was through the Franco-Japanese Bank, founded with the aid of Schneider Creusot, whose 1933 report stated that "our bank has acquired important participation in various activities of the Mitsui group, a group destined to have a fine future."

Baron Hachirumon Mitsui was reported at the time as controlling 65% of the industry of Japan, with the Japanese royal family owning a large interest in the Mitsui Consortium. Mitsui, referred to in the Japanese press as King of Armament-makers, Emperor of Steel, Caesar of Petroleum, and Demigod of the Banking System, owned or controlled most of the mines, factories, steamships, newspapers and commercial enterprises of the first order, not only in Japan but in Korea, China, IndoChina, Manchuria, the Philippines and Hawaii.

The conquest of Manchuria was popularly said to have been instigated by Mitsui, and there is no doubt that this firm was the largest beneficiary from the coal and steel Japan seized. This firm also gained most from the first Sino Japanese war. It was also credited with dictating Japan's peace terms at the end of the Russo- Japanese war, using the Tokyo Foreign Office as one of its many handy instruments. It may be remembered that one of the points Japan would not cede was the occupation by its troops of North Sakhalin, and they remained there until the oil deposits were leased to Japan. Russia was forced to agree. The lease was then given by Japan to one of the owners of the government and nation, the Mitsui Consortium.

The so-called "Asia for the Asiatics" doctrine, which means simply "Asia for Japan," found Baron Hachirumon Mitsui its chief exponent. This is a Monroe Doctrine which marches with banners and is followed by an army of salesmen and exploiters. Hachirumon's fascist imperialism burned even more ardently in his successor, Baron Takakimi Mitsui.

"Japan's financial oligarchy," wrote Anthony Jenkinson for the Institute of Pacific Relations, "is composed of great family trusts known as Zaibatsu. Its leading members are the Houses of Mitsui, Mitsubishi, Sumitomo and Yasuda. Between them they own the greater part of industry, trade, banking, and shipping. By 1937 they controlled more than one third of the total deposits in private banks, 70% of the deposits in all trust companies, and one third of total foreign trade. By controlling the banks, they controlled the smaller credit institutions throughout the country:"

The income tax returns of 1938-39 showed that Japan consists of a vast majority of farm workers and farmers and industrial workers who earn less than the equivalent of $10 a week. There is almost no middle class, only 1,500,000 or about one family in 40, which earns less than $2,500 a year, but on the other hand there is a small rich and powerful ruling class consisting of 3,233 persons with incomes of $50,000 or more a year. The top flight consists of 7 persons who paid an income tax on more than $2,000,000 each. (New York Times, April 2, 1939.)

On July 30, 1941, income tax authorities announced that during the year 1940-41 there were 24 millionaires who paid more than 1,000,000 yen each in income taxes, the total for the two dozen being 57,000,000 yen. Baron Takakimi Mitsui was listed as the richest man in the country (although actually he is not richer than the emperor); he had an income of 7,500,000 yen and paid 4,450,000. Kichizaemon Sumitomo, earning 5,800,000 annually, was next, and after him Baron Kikoyata Iwasaki, head of the Mitsubishi interests, who makes 3,800,000 yen a year.

In all countries where the regime in power prohibits the full development of the nation's industries -- or the manufacturers and raw materials producers themselves limit production (the economy of scarcity), as in the United States -- there must be poverty. In Japan, thanks to the fact that four industrial families and the royal family have colossal wealth -- Mitsui is said to be richer than Ford -- the majority of the people, farmers and workers, are poor. Moreover, the International Labor Office of the League of Nations reported in 1938 that one quarter of the entire population did "not earn enough to maintain health and efficiency." Official Japanese statistics as of May, 1941, show the average wage for men at 82 yen ($19.25 at current rate of exchange) and 31 yen ($7.30) for women.

The trade unions were abolished in 1940 when the royal-military dictatorship began following the Fascist Axis line in action as well as form. "Workers," writes Jenkinson, "were ordered to become members of the League for Service to the State through industry," which approximates the Mussolini labor corporations and the Nazi Hitler's forced labor. The Minister of Welfare in announcing the abolition of the trade unions made this statement: "Our primary aim is to drive communist ideas and dangerous social thoughts from the minds of the people by ordering the dissolution of the established labor unions, which have a tendency to sharpen class consciousness among workers, which hamper the development of industry, and disturb the peace and order of the country." November 23, 1940, the Japanese Patriotic Industrial Society, or Sampo, absorbed the League, and claimed it had 4,500,000 members. It was declared to be a wing of the Imperial Rule Assistance Association.

This Imperial Rule Assistance Association (IRAA) is an outright fascist body. Up to July 6, 1940, there had been many parties in Japan, which gave the nation the semblance of a constitutional monarchy in accordance with its Constitution, granted by the Emperor in 1889 and modeled on that of Bismarck's Prussia. Like Prussia it created a Diet consisting of a House of Peers and a House of Representatives actually elected by popular vote. Leading parties were the Seiyukai and Minseito, both controlled by the big industrialists, the Zaibatsu (very much as our Republican and Democratic Parties are frequently, but not always, controlled by the National Association of Manufacturers). In 1936, however, the Minseito Party came out against Fascism and won a victory and the Social Mass and Proletarian Parties elected 23 working men to the Diet.

But on July 6, 1940, the Social Mass Party was ordered dissolved, and within a few weeks all other parties dissolved "voluntarily." An attempt to form a Laboring People's Party was suppressed.

This left the IRAA in control, a one-party system without an official dictator, but Japan is actually a fascist dictatorship ruled by the Emperor, the Army and Navy, and the Zaibatsu.

No one can tell where the political rule and industrial ownership of these three elements (Royal Family, Big Business, Military) begin and end; they intermingle and draw their money profits from the same seizure and exploitation of foreign lands, exploitation of the impoverished majority not only of Japan but Korea, Manchuria and China.

Japan has been described as an ancient feudal, modern capitalistic, fascist dictatorship. Wilfred Fleisher dubbed it a "collective dictatorship."

Fascism, as any study of Hitler-Germany shows, has been built up as a system of super-colossal robber barons, thanks largely to the international cartels, of which I.G. Farbenindustrie was the largest.

Nationally, all forms of Fascism have flourished thanks to the aid the state has given them in maintaining monopolies or trusts. In every instance where businessmen subsidized a reactionary party -- whether it was the Fiat works in Italy paying Mussolini or a landed estate owner bribing a Rumanian premier -- the party and the most powerful few of the subsidizers have always engaged in forming national monopolies when they took over the rule of the country.

Professor Brady is the only economist who has related the "peak associations" or Spitzenverbaende as they were known in Germany -- that is, the biggest trade associations, such as the NAM and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce -- with the subsidization of fascist movements, and shown how business, whether or not it is officially on the throne, has in all countries become a political power-in fact, the ruling power behind the thrones of fascism.

In Japan, the "peak associations" are dominated by the Zaibatsu, or four ruling families, who are comparatively more powerful and richer than the thirteen ruling families of America.

"Almost all economic organizations in Japan" stated the Monthly Circular issued by Mitsubishi Economic Research Bureau of December, 1937, "'have developed after the World War." Excepting chambers of commerce and industry, they have no legal basis, but as governmental control of the national economy becomes stricter, the part played by these organizations is necessarily of greater importance. The most representative organizations, the members of which include all branches of the national economy, are the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Nippon Kogyo Club, Nippon Keizei Renmeikwai, and Zensanren." The Chamber of Commerce is quasi-governmental. It belongs to the International Chamber of Commerce, and is dominated by the Zaibatsu. The Kogyo Club "exclusively represents the interests of large industries which developed during the World War," and is compared to the Union League Club by Dr. Brady.

Nippon Keizei Renmeikwai, the Japan Economic Association, is comparable to the Federation of British Industries of London (which is the equivalent of the NAM) and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Zensanren (Zenkoku Sangyo Dantai Rengokai) is the National Federation of Industrialists which is described in the Monthly Circular already quoted as having for its main objective "protecting employers' interests against attack from the labor movement." Says Trans-Pacific: "It is that the Federation was organized to present a united front of capitalists against the labor class."

In 1937 the government brought all the leading employers and business confederations together in the Japanese League of Economic Organizations, which Brady describes as a sort of private National Defense Council for business enterprise. He concludes: "It would be hard to imagine a much higher degree of policy-determining power than is indicated by the combination of the Zaibatsu and its concentric cartel and federational machinery. The hierarchy of business control seems well-nigh complete." The government of Japan and the business interests of Japan are bound together "from center to circumference." "What is being accomplished is the gradual rounding out of a highly coordinated fascist-type of totalitarian economy."

Professor Brady points out the fact that it was because the old system of feudalism prevailed longer in Japan than elsewhere that "the new Japanese totalitarianism has been easier to achieve than in any other major industrial-capitalistic country." The "feudal and patriarchal-minded hierarchies of business" and the political and military bureaucracies were identified and centralized. Government and business are more intermarried in Japan than anywhere else, much more so than in the ruling family of Goering-Hitler and company. But all in all the fascist pattern is pretty much the same in all countries where wealth and power have taken over the military-economic-political rule. Professor Brady writes that in Japan the elements "are not greatly dissimilar to those noted for other totalitarian systems of the general fascist type." He lists:

"1. The Zaibatsu, the monopolistically-oriented enterprises centered around them, and the extensive network of trade associations, chambers of commerce, cartels, and similar bodies of which they are the acknowledged leaders, constitute an elaborate, semi-legal hierarchy of graduated economic power. ...

"2. The hierarchy works very closely with the civil and administrative bureaucracy of the state. ... This constitutes the Japanese version of National Socialism. ...

"3. The military is becoming increasingly part and parcel of the same control pyramid. ...

"4. And finally, the psychopathic, ideological, propaganda cement which holds the Kokutai (Corporate State) amalgam together in the fused power of Shinto (the main religion) and Bushido (Precepts of Knighthood)."



Anthony Jenkinson, Know Your Enemy: Japan, American Council, Institute of Pacific Relations.
Robert A. Brady, Business as a System of Power.
Carl Randau and Leane Zugsmith, The Setting Sun of Japan, Random House, 1942.
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:10 am


FASCISM in Spain was bought and paid for by numerous elements who would profit by the destruction of the democratic Republican Loyalist government. There were generals who wanted glory and others who wanted the easy graft money some of their predecessors had made. There was the established Church, and more especially the powerful Society of Jesus, which had suffered loss of property when King Alfonso was thrown out. There was the aristocracy, and there were other elements as there are in all fascist regimes, but more important than all these forces combined was the force of Money.

The Big Money conspired with General Sanjurjo and the Nazi government in early 1936 to establish a fascist regime which would not only protect profits but insure bigger profits at the expense of the majority and end the heavy fear that the masses preferred the benefits which even a weak republic could obtain for them.

Prominent among the owners of Spain and Fascism are:

1. The Duke of Alba. Of him it has been said that he could cross Spain from the French border at Irun to the outskirts of Gibraltar and never take his feet off his own land. True or not, it is a fact that he is one of the holders of vast lands, in a nation where thousands starve to death and millions pray for two or three acres.

2. Juan March. This multi-millionaire crook is typical of one element of all fascist regimes. In Italy Mussolini had his murderers and assorted gangsters whom he gave big graft jobs and made into millionaires as a reward for their aiding him before 1922. Matteoti's assassins are known. March has a penitentiary record as a common smuggler, and also a record as the holder of the state monopoly in tobacco. He is said to have put more millions into the Franco movement than any other man.

3. Rio Tinto. This is one of the biggest mining ventures in the world. Big British and Spanish capital is invested in it, and it is a truism that all big capital prefers a fascist regime, which it can own completely, to a democracy where elections change things -- and the tax rate. The British probably have the controlling interest in Rio Tinto. When Claude Bowers, American Ambassador to Spain, suggested to the British Ambassador that if Franco won, Britain would have Hitler at Gibraltar and perhaps lose the control of the Mediterranean, "the lifeline of empire," the British Ambassador answered that "private interests at home are stronger than national interests." He meant that Rio Tinto and other Spanish mine, electricity, railroad and other stockholders in Britain preferred Fascism and even Hitler in Spain to the safety of Britain itself.

In all agrarian countries -- notably Poland, Hungary, Spain, Roumania -- the big landowners are almost without exception fascists. The Duke of Alba, who put millions into the Franco investment, was joined by all the Spanish holders of estates who, with the Church, had owned the best and largest areas of fertile Spain.

There had been no large seizure of land under the Republic, but all the liberal parties were pledged to agrarian reform. Big pieces of land had been bought from the great landlords and parceled out -- in three or four acres and perhaps ten -- to several thousand landless. The Republic did accomplish something, but although it was not anything very big, it was enough to scare the multimillionaire estate owners. They therefore joined the conspiracy with Franco so that they could keep the land. It was as simple as all that.

Of course the people of Spain -- the vast majority, the farmers and workers -- wanted land and a decent living. Franco therefore did the usual fascist thing: he made big promises.

The Republic had divided several hundred thousand acres among the impoverished. Franco repeated the Republic's promises. Here, for example, is the rabidly fascist Coughlinite paper, The Tablet of Brooklyn, which (believe it or not) is also the official organ of the largest diocese in the world. Said the Tablet in 1937:


"Cordoba, May 26. -- General Quiepo de Llano, in Ecija, a small town in Andalucia, has formally settled 100 peasants on small parcels of land, the first of a series of such experiments by General Franco to interest the peasant in a small holding of his own. ... Franco has stated that all workers on outlying farms and haciendas must be given facilities to hear Mass every week."

It is indeed an amazing item. In 1936, about election time, when the fascists were beaten and thrown out of office, peasants in many parts of Spain thought the great day had arrived, and they helped themselves to land. In many districts there was violence as the Republic ejected the men who had seized the soil. The Republic promised the land-hungry peasants would get land-later -- and legally. Now the American fascists report Franco making an "experiment ... to interest the peasant in a small holding of his own." What corrupt irony!

In its issue of March 19, 1938, the native fascist Tablet reported that Franco (blessed by the Church and called a "child of God" although he had pinned the bleeding heart of Christ on the tunics of the bloodthirsty Moors, some 150,000 of whom had been imported to do most of the fighting) had given a total of 17,000 acres of land to the peasantry of Spain.

This appears to be something more than it is. Republican Spain from 1931 to 1936 had failed to satisfy the needs of the peasants -- thanks to sabotage by the wealthy -- and had succeeded in distributing only 13,000,000 hectares of land, which is some 30,000,000 acres. Thirty million was not enough, because the impoverished peasantry numbered many millions, and that figure would have allowed too few acres per family. However, it was something.

In the Twenty-Six Points of the Phalanx, the ruling Fascist Party of today -- all other parties have been abolished and Spain is totalitarian -- the nation was to be turned into "one gigantic syndicate of producers," so that there would be plenty for all, instead of superabundance for only the rich, as had been the case under both monarchy and fascist dictatorship; the banks were to be nationalized, land was to be irrigated, and those large estates which were found to be neglected were to be broken up.

What does the balance sheet today show of the Franco "experiment" of 100 parcels of land, the distribution of a glorious total of 17,000 acres in 1938, and the promise that at least neglected estates would be broken up? The writer-journalist Thomas J. Hamilton presents the latest and final report:

"The landed aristocrats of Spain ... had little real cause for complaint against the Franco regime which addressed itself to the work of undoing any damage to their interests that they had suffered from the Republic. This was not large. The grandees had been frightened by talk of breaking up the great estates, but they had managed to sabotage the Republic's first Agrarian Reform Law and the second was just getting into operation when the Civil War began. Only a few hundred thousand acres had actually been taken over, either in accordance with law or as a result of the movement among the peasants in the Spring of 1936 to seize the land without waiting for the slow operations of the government.

"The test of any Spanish regime was its attitude toward this fundamental question, and it may be supposed that some of the grandees had anxious moments when Franco adopted the Phalanx program with its demand for land reform. Carlists and moderate royalists together, however, proved more than strong enough to prevent the regime from harming the interests of the landowners. All land which had been occupied by the peasants, legally or otherwise, was returned to the owners, and soon there was no longer even any mention of breaking up the great estates. ...

"In general, the old nobility, fighting very much the same type of fight that it had under the Republic, managed to keep the Phalanx from hitting its pocketbook."

Mussolini's prediction, made years before the Global War broke out in September, 1939, that the entire world was lining up in two camps, Fascism and Democracy, and that it was "Either We or They," showed itself a matter of fact in the so-called civil war in Spain. It was actually a rebellion of the military leadership -- which committed wholesale treason by betraying the government to which it had taken an oath of allegiance -- armed and paid for by the vested interests. The "We" consisted of Fascists from all parts of the world, hundreds of thousands of soldiers from Germany, Italy and Portugal, all fascist lands, whereas the "They" of Democracy consisted of some 30,000 men of the International Brigade, not one a conscript soldier as were all on Franco's side, but every man a volunteer, a man of intelligence, a first fighter against Fascism. (Of the foreigners on the Loyalist side about 700 were Russians, mostly aviators and technicians, and not one infantry soldier. The press of America, Britain and other countries as usual lied about Russian aid and perpetuated the myth that the Loyalists were Communists.)

On Franco's march to Madrid he took not only the labor union leaders but a large percentage of the industrial workers of each town he captured, lined them up, and shot them down with machine guns. In Madrid the Fifth Column of Fascism killed as many of the working class as it could.

From Madrid early in 1937 this journalist wrote to the New York Post that Fascism had made it a class war in Spain; that Fascism was determined to kill off all leaders of the working class so it could enslave the workers, whereas the Loyalists had as their objective the redistribution of land and wealth.

The most enlightening proof of a class war was given in Madrid on the 7th and 8th of November, 1936, when the capital was given up as lost, when the censors in the Telefonica let the newspapermen send out the most pessimistic reports, and the Loyalist militiamen sat around waiting for Franco to arrive and murder them.

On the 8th there was considerable shooting in the streets. It was Franco's Fifth Column -- the hidden pro-fascist column which the fascist international has created in every country, and which still flourishes in the United States, and has its supporters in Congress. The Loyalists estimated the snipers at twenty or thirty thousand. Now, when Franco appeared about to enter the city, they boldly appeared in windows and on roofs and around street corners, and began their guerrilla warfare.

How did the Spanish Fascists know which Spaniards to murder?

Obviously every man in Loyalist uniform was a possible victim. But the Loyalists never had enough money to put all of their men in uniform, and tens of thousands fought the war in the blue overalls of their shops and factories.

The Fifth Column, hidden Fascists, were the people who had subsidized Franco. To them every working man was an anti-Fascist and therefore marked for death. And since the Loyalists in wartime did not wear white shirts, or white collars, or fine suits of clothes, or felt hats, or even neckties, the Fascists of the Fifth Column, fighting their guerrilla war in the streets of Madrid on November 8, 1936, spared every well-dressed wealthy-looking man as a possible ally, and murdered the men of the working class. Men in overalls were always shot by the Fascists.

An interesting footnote on the Spanish situation was published in the fascist press early in 1940. Said Voice of Spain:

"Apologists for the Nationalist Movement have gone to some trouble to point out that the Church in Spain is poor, and has been for some time. They have emphasized that nobody has yet produced concrete evidence of the holdings which the Church was known to have in commercial undertakings, that is to say, that nobody has been able to produce the share certificates and exhibit them publicly. We should like to have been able to do so for the information of the doubters, but now we do the next best thing. On page 172 will be found a facsimile from a page of ABC (Madrid Franco paper) of January 7, 1940, showing a list of Church shares which were confiscated by the Republican Government, and now claimed back by the Church. What we publish refers only to shares in the Telefonica. ... Do our readers consider that this evidence is good enough or, if not, what more do they want in the way of evidence?

"The fabulous wealth of the Church before July 19, 1936, is very well known, especially that held by the Company of Jesus, which is estimated at 6,000 million pesetas. The man with 'power of attorney' in all these holdings was Ruiz Senen, who was on the board of 40 important companies as agent of the Jesuits, and whose tentacles stretched out into all sorts of industrial undertakings."

The Telefonica of course is the American-owned I.T.&T. building and national telephone system. The advertisement reproduced lists the Metropolitan of Valencia owning hundreds of shares; the Casa Diocesana of the Archbishop of Lerida, 14 shares preferred stock; the rector of the College of San Jose of Valencia, of the Society of Jesus, the College of Maria the Immaculate, and several other Church organizations.

On January 24, 1940, ABC published a similar advertisement restoring preferred and common stocks and bonds to investors of the Compania Trasatlantica, the steamship line. Among the holders listed were: Rev. Pedro Pujol, the Archbishop of Madrid-Alcala, 50 shares numbered 91,101 to 91,150, the vicar general of the Congregation of Hermanas Descalzas de la Tercera Orden de la B.V.M. del Carmen of Tarragona, 9 shares.

On January 27, 1940, General Franco signed a decree formally restoring "the vast property holdings of the Society of Jesus which had been confiscated by the Republic in 1932," at the time the Jesuits were expelled. How vast this property is few persons know, as much of it was held in the names of individuals. M. Angel Margaud in "L'Espagne au XXe Siecle" quoted Aguilera as writing that "one can evaluate about one third of the national wealth, the goods, movable and immovable, owned by the Congregations. The North Railroad, the Transatlantic Co., the orange groves of Andalusia, the mines of the Basque provinces, and in the Rif, many factories in Barcelona, are under their open or occult direction. ..."

The Republic of 1931 had separated Church and State. The Church supported the Fascist side in 1936. In 1940 the Fascists restored all the confiscated wealth, including stocks and bonds, to the Church. Fascism paid off in this instance.

The final lesson from Spain, however, should not be lost by the thousands of American business men, big and little, who from 1922 on have been saying kind things about Mussolini and others who made trains run on time and seemed to insure bigger profits by outlawing unions, and the rights of the working people.

In Germany a million business men were ruined by Hitler, and only the upper thousand, the wealthiest and most powerful, profited by Nazi rule. As in Italy, so in Germany, the fascist regime had to rob not only the poor and reimpose serfdom on millions, but it also had to rob its own supporters to maintain a new bureaucracy, and a new army on whose bayonets the bureaucracy tried to build a permanent government. Fascism has to exploit either a foreign people or its own people; it has to have money, and if it must payoff the top subsidizers this means it has to destroy its millions of smaller helpers.

Hitler and Mussolini robbed and impoverished their own party members in order to feed the super-monopolists. In Spain the situation is similar. Hamilton writes:

"Spain was traditionally the land of special privilege. Franco's success in restoring these privileges therefore produced a singularly vicious combination: the rich stayed rich, if they did not get richer, and the poor were even hungrier than they had been in the worst days of the civil war. ... Suffering was increased immeasurably by the restoration of the old privileges; despite the steadily increasing misery of the poor, the wealthy managed to obtain virtually everything they needed. And a new class of parvenus, who had made their money by the special 'favours' obtained from the government officials in charge of operating the faltering economic machine, spent their profits with an abandon which was one failing that could not be charged against the old families.

"The Franco regime had, in fact, loaded still more privileged classes upon a suffering country. ..."

Big Business and the Landlords profited by the restoration of Fascism in Spain; so did the Church. Here is the proof: the ownership by the church in stocks of commercial enterprises.

British fascists most deeply involved in the Spanish war were the stockholders and directors of the Rio Tinto, the numerous light, power and street car companies of Madrid, Barcelona and other big cities.

In 1937 Franco sent the Duke of Alba to London to arrange for the financing of the fascist rebellion. Alba is also the British Duke of Berwick, a direct descendant of King James II. The founder of the Duchy of Berwick was an illegitimate son of the Duke of York (afterwards James II) and Arabella Churchill.

"The Duke began his mission with a well directed appeal to the Englishman's pocketbook," Frank R. Keeley cabled the New York Herald Tribune (January 9, 1938). "He declared in an interview: '... If there were no higher consideration, surely your markets and your invested capital in Spain should prompt you at least to be just to the Nationalist cause. ... We offer commercial freedom. ... You know that in the Republican zone great British concerns like, for example, Barcelona Traction, have been seized. ... Ask the Rio Tinto people, ask your sherry trade. ...' The Duke pointed out that England had a direct interest in Spain's mineral wealth."

Sir Oliver Lyttleton, member of the British Cabinet, chairman of the Board of Trade, was a director of Metallgesellschaft, of Frankfurt, Germany, which with Rio Tinto, Ltd., owns European Pyrites Co., Ltd. Other Rio Tinto directors are P.A. Cooper, director of the Bank of England and of CHADE, whose controlling stock was held by Von Gwinner of the Deutsches Bank of Berlin; F.D. Docker, vice-president of the Federation of British Industries -- equivalent to our NAM and Chamber of Commerce; Sir Edward Wildbore Smith, director of the Suez.

In his speech at Burgos on April 19, 1939, Franco announced a Nationalist Syndicalist state which would restore the status quo ante 1931 -- the time the Republic was overthrown. The New York Times headline was: "Franco Reassures owners of Capital."



Thomas J. Hamilton, Appeasement's Child, Knopf, 1943.
Voice of Spain (Edited by Charles Duff), January 27, 1940.
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:12 am


ONLY THE little seditionists and traitors have been rounded up by the F.B.I. The real Nazi Fifth Column in America remains immune. And yet there is evidence that those in both countries who place profits above patriotism -- and Fascism is based entirely upon profits although all its propaganda speaks of patriotism -- have conspired to make America part of the Nazi Big Business system.

Thurman Arnold, as assistant district attorney of the United States, his assistant, Norman Littell, and several Congressional investigations, have produced incontrovertible evidence that some of our biggest monopolies entered into secret agreements with the Nazi cartels and divided the world among them. Most notorious of all was Alcoa, the Mellon-Davis-Duke monopoly which is largely responsible for the fact America did not have the aluminum with which to build airplanes before and after Pearl Harbor, while Germany had an unlimited supply. Of the Aluminum Corporation sabotage and that of other leading companies the press said very little, but several books have now been written out of the official record.

The document which follows, and which was first published by In Fact on July 13, 1942, goes much further than the mere cartel conspiracies of Big Business of both countries, because it has political clauses and points to a bigger conspiracy of money and politicians such as helped betray Norway and France and other lands to the Nazi machine. The most powerful fortress in America is the production monopolies, but its betrayal would involve, as it did in France, the participation of some of the most powerful figures of the political as well as the industrial world. The real Fifth Column is built on more than economic penetration, and much more than a few pro-Nazi preachers, red network manipulators, publishers of cheap and lying anti-Semitic pamphlets, and crackpots of all sorts. In Spain, where the term Fifth Column originated, it was not reported generally that the pro-Franco traitors within Madrid, who hid on roofs and murdered people in the streets, were -- except for hired gunmen -- members of the upper ruling class, the aristocrats, the landowners, and the members of the big business ruling families, and all the dead and wounded were working men.

Our press, which had nothing but praise for Mussolini for almost a generation, and which has always protected Fascism, Naziism and reaction in general by redbaiting every person and movement which is anti-Fascist, anti-Nazi and anti-reactionary, later made a grand noise over the traitors, seditionists and propagandists such as Coughlin, Fritz Kuhn and Pelley, who were the outstanding loudmouths at the time of Pearl Harbor. These small-fry fascisti and the Rev. Gerald Winrod and numerous others spread the same lies which they received from Hitler's World-Service (Welt-Dienst) of Erfurt; all these noisy propagandists and traitors, repeating Hitler's propaganda, did succeed in raising a huge smokescreen over America. Behind this artificial redbaiting, anti-Semitic, anti-New Deal fog of confusion and falsehood, however, there was a real Fifth Column of greater importance, the great owners and rulers of America who planned world domination through political and military Fascism, just as surely as Hitler did in Germany, and like groups and like leaders did in other countries. There is no reason to believe that the United States was the one exception to the spread of Fascism.

Nine men, two representing Hitler and several leading American industrialists, members of the Congress of the United States, and representatives of large business and political organizations met at the Hotel S______ in Boston, on November 23, 1937 -- at a time Hitler was trying out his Condor Legion, his divebombers, his new tanks and his Panzerdivisionen and his Blitzkrieg tactics on the poor and practically unarmed people of Spain -- to formulate a working agreement by which American forces would join Nazi forces in the monopolistic control of the world's business and the political and military domination of the whole world.

The document which follows is a memorandum written at the conclusion of the meeting. The secretary who collected the notes from five of the persons present, each of whom contributed a part ... was not versed in social, economic and political matters, but was impressed somehow with the importance of the event, and although her notes were taken away from her, she did succeed in retaining a carbon copy of the document. It had a long journey, went to Scotland, was copied by persons who realized its value, and brought back to the United States, where I was able to obtain it for the readers of In Fact. Here it is in its entirety:


"The purpose of this draft is not to commit anyone who attended our formal conference. On the contrary, the memorandum should only retain and preserve the main topics of our conversation which, if desired, could be reported to proper organizations or individuals having the competence and privilege to draw practical conclusions or take appropriate steps.

"1. One of our German guests emphasized in his statement that he has no authority to give any official viewpoint. Nevertheless, his personal impression is after years-long service in connection with consular representations here that radical changes took place in America's foreign policy with regard to Germany. 'Our country,' he said, 'was accustomed to regard the United 'States as a source of friendly influence. Its contributions have alleviated Germany's burden under the peace treaty. President Hoover's step leading up to the complete elimination of the financial debt resulting from the Versailles treaty was considered always as characteristic manifestation of the American attitude towards the German people.

"'The Roosevelt Administration has introduced important changes which tend to alter the German opinion concerning the American attitude. A certain agitation was allowed to interfere with German-American relations. Instead of cooperating in the opening of tremendous potential markets, Germany and America were forced to join hostile diplomatic camps. The potential markets China and Russia cannot be organized with(out) the active collaboration of American capital, however. World recovery is thus delayed.

"'Germany is therefore willing to undertake everything humanly possible, in order to approach directly the financial and industrial leaders of the United States. The creation of a Japanese monopoly in the Far East is not desirable. Nor is for that matter a Chinese victory. The new Presidential elections must bring the United States on the side of the powers fighting for the reorganization of the world markets.

"'To support those trends in the American public opinion which definitely favor such a change, is the paramount task of the German foreign policy. This support does not only include the swinging of the German-American vote to a presidential candidate definitely sympathetic to the aforementioned aims, but also all possible cooperation with truly national forces. This, of course, cannot be construed as interference into American internal affairs, since the concrete form as well as the extent of that support must be determined by the political groups concerned.'

"2. Our second German guest, who was just recently appointed to a diplomatic post in this country, supplemented the above statements with the following points:

"Germany has been grossly misrepresented before the American public by Jewish propaganda. 'In order to clarify the picture,' he said, 'it is necessary to recall that Germany of the Republican period has thrown a remarkable confusion into the minds of the Germans. The state has been identified with some popular welfare institution. Creative capital was overburdened by the effects of a Utopian "social welfare" legislation. Unemployed insurance, sick, old-age, and death benefits, social security and war pensions meant terrible handicaps already. Trade union wages and hours have lifted productive costs above world standards.'

"What is the paramount achievement of National Socialism? 'The spirit of New Germany was conducive to a kind of national solidarity. Exaggerated demands and "social service" were reduced and production costs realistically brought into harmony with the requirements of competition on the world markets. This is what we have done. Not more and not less. It is true that many objections had to be overcome. The conception featuring the State as a supreme welfare agency had to be eradicated and a policy of increased production pursued instead. We had to silence therefore all centers from where class struggle was being fomented and imprison dangerous Utopians and sentimental philanthropists. It is true that Jewish propaganda was able to capitalize on some stern measures and slander New Germany before the world opinion. This is undoubtedly a detrimental fact. But we have gotten more by the rebirth of national solidarity and the cooperation of all for the same purpose.

"'Without wishing to arouse any semblance of interfering with domestic questions in the United States, I cannot help mentioning that today's America presents a very close picture of Social-Democratic Germany. Unrealistic "welfare legislation" sponsored by the Administration, chaotic class struggles and wage demands absolutely out of any proportion, strong Jewish influence in the political, cultural and public life of the country are disquieting phenomena. We Germans, at any rate, are disquieted. We carry on a good work for world recovery and we know what potential danger an increasing red influence in the United States would mean for the whole world.

"'Another disquieting characteristic of the situation is the lack of unity and clear-sighted leadership in the scattered national camp. You cannot stand a strong concerted drive of all forces and agencies for the revival of American nationalism as long as this situation prevails.

"'It is time to think seriously of the centralization of all forces of American nationalism and traditionalism. We Germans are seeking the cooperation of all American nationalists. Above all we believe in cooperating with the economic leaders of the country, whatever the suitable form of the cooperation may be. There is little comprehension on behalf of the United States Government, but in our belief there must be comprehension for our viewpoint on behalf of business.

"'We would advance the idea of such informal conferences between responsible business and political leaders in order to consider questions of national and international importance affecting economic and, yes, political recovery.'

"The following opinions were expressed by the American participants of the conference:

"(a) The substance of the German suggestion amounts to changing the spirit of our nation as expressed by recent elections. That is possible but by no means easy. The people must become aware of the disastrous economic effects of the policies of the present Administration first. In the wake of the reorientation of the public opinion a vigorous drive must start in the press and radio. Technically it remains a question as to whether this drive may center around the Republican National Committee.

"(b) Farsighted business men will welcome conferences of this kind. A tremendous inspiration might come out of them. There is no reason why we should not learn of emergencies similar to those prevailing in our own country and the methods by which farsighted governments were trying to overcome them. It is also clear that manufacturers, who usually contributed to the campaigns of all candidates, must realize that their support must be reserved to one, in whose selection they must take an active hand.

"We must just as well recognize that the business leaders of this country must get together in the present emergency. By now they must have realized that they cannot expect much from Washington. We will have to resort to concrete planning.

"We can all agree that it is desirable to convince our business leaders that it is a good investment to embark on subsidizing our patriotic citizens' organizations and secure their fusion for the common purpose.

"Unified leadership with one conspicuous leader will be a sound policy. We will be grateful for any service our German friends may give us in this respect.

"(c) American foreign policy must be chiefly guarded against the danger of the sovietization of the Far East. More than ever we must supervise by Congress what the State Department does. Rapprochement with Germany, while unpopular, is a necessity, if we consider the strong pro-Soviet agitation going on and finding patronage in the United States. It is of the greatest importance that leading and influential figures in our business life and the policy-making bodies of both political parties should be appraised of this first conversation and prevailed upon to discuss the possibilities of a non-partisan cooperation on the subject."


The importance of the foregoing memorandum, the first of a proposed series of notes upon which a political- Commercial pact between the Nazi regime and pro-fascist Americans could be arranged, was recognized at the time. Shortly afterwards a SO-called "little Dies" committee, one of several flourishing in many states in imitation of and sincerest flattery to the big native Fascist Martin, was invited to make an investigation into the origins of the plot. But the informant was told by a Boston member of the Massachusetts redbaiting organization that this was not the stuff it was after, this memorandum, in fact, was "all right." In other words, plots by Nazis and their American friends were passed over or approved in Boston in just the same manner Nazi activities throughout the United States were passed up by Martin Dies, the fair-haired boy of the Goebbels broadcasting stations.

Each of the five parts, listed as 1 and 2, and a, b, and c, was written by a participant in the 1937 meeting. No. 1 is the work of Baron von Tippleskirch, No. 2 that of Baron von Killinger, "a" was written by a member of the U.S. Senate who was at this meeting, "b" by a representative of General Motors, and "c" by the representative of the DuPont interests.

In 1939, shortly before Germany invaded Poland and started the Global War from which the Nazis and their Quislings and Fifth Columns in all lands but Russia hoped to emerge rulers of the world, a diplomatic representative visited the seven Americans each of whom owned a copy of the foregoing memorandum. The importance of the document lies largely in the prominence and importance of the nine men who attended the conference and the forces and corporations they represented. Of these nine, their governments, and their corporations and other interests, I have information on five. These are:

Baron von Tippleskirch, Nazi consul general in Boston.

Manfred Freiherr von Killinger, then newly appointed consul general in San Francisco. Killinger was one of the eight men who participated in the murder of the Catholic statesman Erzberger in Republican Germany. The fact that he was found persona grata by our State Department, where Mr. Hull has a dozen pro-Fascist assistants functioning even today, is interesting. Killinger arrived just before Japan began her invasion of China, and conferred also with Japanese agents.

General Motors Representative. General Motors was completely involved in Nazi affairs. Until Pearl Harbor it was the owner of the Adam Opel A.G., worth more than $100,000,000. It had paid $30,000,000 for 80% of the stock. It had made 30% of Germany's peacetime passenger cars. After Hitler came into power, it began manufacturing the trucks and panzer division equipment with which Hitler waged war. In 10 years it had made a profit estimated at $36,000,000. But, since Hitler banned the export of capital, and American stockholders were thereby denied these dividends, General Motors invested at least $20,000,000 in other industries, all owned or controlled by Goering and other Nazi officials, and thus General Motors was completely affiliated with Nazi success or failure. (Source for statistics: Poor's Manual.)

Alfred P. Sloan, president of General Motors and director of DuPonts, was charged by the U.S. Treasury (June 29, 1937), just five months before the date of our memorandum, with cheating the government out of $1,921,587 in three years through establishing personal holding companies to dodge taxes.

DuPont Representative. The four most important facts about the DuPont Empire are:

a. that it controls General Motors, owning $197,000,000 of General Motors stock;

b. that it financed the Liberty League, Sentinels, Crusaders and one dozen native American fascist outfits;

c. that it knowingly and secretly and in violation of the U. S. and other laws, aided Hitler to arm for this war;

d. that the DuPonts betrayed military secrets to Hitler.

One great cartel of the merchants of death is called Dynamit-Aktien-Gesellschaft (DAG). Exhibit 456 in the Nye Vandenberg munitions investigation shows that DuPonts not only own stock but a voting right and a voice in the management of the cartel. Exhibit 456 also shows DuPont has a financial interest in I.G. Farbenindustrie) the Nazi cartel which ties up with the Aluminum monopoly, Standard Oil, synthetic rubber, Sterling and other drug concerns.

The DuPont contract with DAG, British Imperial Chemicals and Nazi interests, as published by the munitions committee, says in part: "Each party agrees ... upon making or obtaining any patented invention or discovery or acquiring any secret invention, to disclose in writing to the other party immediately, or in any event within six months thereafter, full particulars." It may be noted that according to Thurman Arnold the Nazified I.G. Farben obtained Standard Oil synthetic rubber patents, that Standard Oil did not receive all German patents, and that Standard Oil refused to make the German patents known to the U.S. Government even after Germany attacked.

The DuPonts knew that according to the Thyssen plan German Fascism was nothing more than a system by which the biggest German industries got control of the nation, smashing small business, seizing political rule. Wendell R. Swint, director of DuPont foreign relations, testified the DuPonts knew of the "scheme whereby industry would contribute to the (Nazi) Party Organization funds, and in fact industry is called upon to pay one-half percent of the annual wage or salary roll to the Nazi organization." (Munitions Hearing, Vol. XII.)

The relationship of the DuPonts to Nazi Germany -- the story of how they armed Hitler with the help of Mr. Hoover -- as exposed by the munitions investigation, gives valuable support to the foregoing.

On December 4, 1938, the Associated Press, Moscow bureau, sent out a list issued by the official Tass government press bureau of a "fascist clique" in the United States, which list follows with explanatory facts about each person:

"War Industry Magnate" DuPont. The official statement said the DuPonts had "great capital investments in fascist Germany."

William S. Knudsen, president of General Motors. Knudsen told a New York Times reporter (October 6, 1933) on arriving from Europe that Hitler's Germany was "the miracle of the 20th Century." Nevertheless paragraph "c" in our memorandum was not written by Knudsen, but by another GM official of equal prominence.

Colonel Lindbergh. In addition to collaborating with the British Cliveden Set, Lindbergh had written an article for the reactionary Reader's Digest stating Hitler's Aryan myth and other fascist doctrines.

Former President Herbert Hoover. (See Bibliography.)

Ambassador to Britain Joseph P. Kennedy. Kennedy's secret report to Roosevelt on the war favored Britain going Fascist.

Henry Ford. (See Chapter IX.)

Bruce Barton. One of America's leading advertising men, head of an agency controlling $40,000,000, Barton has a tremendous influence on America's corrupt commercial press. Barton is a native Fascist. He praised "the sense of national obligation which Mussolini has recreated in the soul of Italy." He wrote: "Must we abolish the Senate and have a dictatorship to do it? I sometimes think it would be almost worth the cost." (American Magazine, June, 1930. Barton objected to ideas he had written being used against him when he ran for the Senate. He said they were years old. But when he wrote an endorsement of Mussolini, the Duce had already murdered thousands of persons, destroyed the labor unions, outlawed civil liberties.)

Senator Arthur H. Vandenberg. As part of the Nye-Vandenberg Munitions inquiry, Senator Vandenberg went after the DuPonts and exposed their relations with Hitler. This was not a hardship for Vandenberg. He has always been Ford's friend, and Ford was the rival of General Motors, which the DuPonts controlled. By Mussolini's definition of Fascism as Reaction, Vandenberg qualifies as one of America's leading Fascists. In his Congressional record are votes against the Wagner Act (the Magna Carta of American labor), the Wages and Hours Act, TVA, AAA. In opposing the Black-Connery Wages and Hours Bill, three months before the date of the foregoing memorandum, Vandenberg said it would make for a "centralized, authoritarian state with its tyranny of oppressive, government-blessed monopolies." In 1936 Vandenberg had urged a coalition of reactionary Republicans and reactionary Democrats to block the New Deal.

On November 27, 1937, Captain Fritz Wiedemann, Hitler's personal adjutant, en route to the U.S., was exposed in Paris as heading a Nazi political mission whose purpose was to seek the support of leading American reactionaries and pro-Fascists to further Hitler's aggressive aim in Europe.

Mme. Genevieve Tabouis, militant editor of L'Oeuvre, one of the 2% of the French press which was not bribed, wrote in her paper that day that it was the object of the Nazi mission to make contact with Senator Vandenberg of Michigan.

The United Press cabled a similar statement from Paris that day, adding that it was based on information from a reliable source in Berlin.

The New York Herald Tribune, which receives United Press service, suppressed the item concerning Vandenberg.

Mme. Tabouis stated that Germany was seeking assurances from the United States and Britain in order "to leave her hands free in the East, particularly concerning expansion in Central Europe towards Russia." (Note: Mme. Tabouis, also called "Cassandra," was proved absolutely right when Germany attacked Russia in June, 1941.) Mme. Tabouis continued:

"The aim of the mission is to try to convince the American people that Germany wants peace but desires facilities in Central Europe. It also wants to show that Germany's great aim is opposition to Communism throughout the world. This mission will enter into close relations with Senator Vandenberg...."



Guenther Reimann, Patents for Rifler, Vanguard, 1942.
Joseph Borking and Charles A. Welsh, Germany's Master Plan, Duell, Sloan & Pearce, 1943.
Munitions Industry, 73rd Congress, Part 9 (Hoover and the Du Ponts, pp" 2138ff; 2150; 2169-70; 2242).
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:17 am


THE TWO corporations which were part of the Nazi cartel plot in the United States are two of the main vertebrae of the back bone of American Fascism. Lammot DuPont and Alfred P. Sloan, Jr., of the DuPont Empire and General Motors respectively, have been exposed by Congressional committees as subsidizers of fascist organizations and movements. Both corporations and both men are also among the top flight rulers of the National Association of Manufacturers.

Before producing a small fraction of the documentation -- it would require volumes to present a real indictment -- showing that the NAM is the center of American Fascism, and that its leaders are the Thyssens, Flicks and Voegelers of America, this statement must be made about the organization.

The NAM is something like a nation, like a people -- say the Finns, or the Germans. Our country passed through a great emotional phase which favored the Finns, and is naturally emotionally set against the Germans, nevertheless -- thanks largely to the press -- the American people as a whole refused to accept the fact that Finland has been in fascist hands for a long period of its independent history, and also refuses to accept the view that there are millions of good and innocent Germans. The facts are that both Finland and Germany are in the hands of fascist rulers, that a large proportion of the population in each country accepts Fascism, and that it is necessary in the war against Fascism to destroy not only the leadership but as large a part as possible of its armed might in the field. But it is the leadership which is totally vicious, and it is an unfortunate fact which apparently cannot be changed by the innocent, no matter how many of them there are, that rulers and ruled have a united destiny.

It may therefore be true that the majority of the estimated 15,000 members of the NAM are as innocent as the Finnish man-in-the-street, or the German farmer or industrial worker, of the crimes of Fascism, but it is truer yet that the inner group which rules the NAM is just as vicious a clique as the one Thyssen organized to put Hitler into power.

There are actually three groups in the NAM, as the National Maritime Union's organ, The Pilot, once pointed out:

"The large majority of NAM members are reasonably assured that a United Nations victory is in their own and the country's best interests. A smaller group moves along with the feelings strongest at the time and yields one way or the other if pressured. A still smaller but very much more powerful group is in the saddle now and its program is remarkable for a nation at war.

"The group swinging the NAM whip is headed by Frederick C. Crawford, who has no beef with the Axis. He has the perfect background for a model version of a homegrown Fascist. During the middle thirties he was active as a director in Associated Industries, a Cleveland strikebreaking agency which tried to doctor up its records when the La Follette Committee went to work on it. The F.B.I. proved that this fink outfit paid out to a labor spy agency ... which means he okayed the hiring of goons, spies, thugs, and stoolies, and financed the use of tear gas, sawed-off shotguns and blackjacks, etc.

"Mussolini got splashed with Crawford's praise after a trip to Europe in 1939. About Hitler he said: 'What difference does it make if the dictatorship of Germany is consuming one-fourth of production for military grandeur, or whether the bureaucracy of the New Deal is consuming one-fourth of production to maintain itself? ...'

"Crawford's fighting a war ... but it's a war against President Roosevelt, against the American people, and against the coming defeat of Hitler."

Crawford, DuPont, Sloan and a handful of others boss the NAM. Several years ago, when it had only half its present membership, the La Follette Committee reported that "about 207 companies, or approximately 5% of the NAM, are in a position to formulate the policies." Actually a dozen or so native Fascists control the most powerful private organization in the history of America, but they control it as absolutely as Hitler, Mussolini, Hirohito and other Fascists controlled their own nations (until their downfall); they are just as responsible for its political and social activities, and the entire NAM is just as guilty (or innocent) as the mass of people is in each fascist nation. (In this connection it may be pointed out that whereas a German cannot very well quit Germany in wartime, although there are Germans who have done better than that by becoming guerrilla fighters, it is easy for an American business man or corporation to quit the fascist NAM on the spur of the moment, and General Mills, for one example, did do so when one of its presidents, a Mr. Witherow, said we were not fighting the war to put TVA's on the Danube.)

From the foregoing and following facts the reader may decide for himself whether the NAM, which represents the best part of American industry, and whose annual meetings are said to represent $60,000,000,000, is to be blamed as a whole, or whether a distinction is to be made between its Fuehrer (plural) and its following. But there can be no question about certain things, and the first and most important of all is that the NAM, which had been merely one of many trade associations from 1895 on, became a national force when it became the spearhead of the anti-labor movement at its convention in New Orleans in April, 1903.

The history of this campaign of the biggest industries of America to prevent the majority of the American people from forming any sort of organization which would improve working conditions and raise the standard of living of the nation, is punctuated by three Congressional investigations which show up the NAM for exactly what it is: the counterpart of the fascist organizations of the fascist nations of Europe and Asia.

1. The Garrett Committee disclosed the existence of the NAM lobby in Washington, its "secretive" and "reprehensible" activities, its "questionable and disreputable" means of defeating Congressmen who refused to obey it, and its general criminal character in using money in a corrupt manner to fight the labor unions.

2. The La Follette Investigations into the violations of the rights of free speech and the criminal actions used against labor established the fact that certain corporations -- almost without exception leading members of the NAM -- employed poison gas and machine guns in their plants, also spies, thugs, stool pigeons and murderers and other racketeers; also that the NAM corrupted public opinion in America by using the largest network of propaganda.

3. The O'Mahoney Monopoly Investigation showed in one of its reports that 200 industrial and 50 financial families own, control and rule America and that of the industrial families 13 are the most powerful. Ford is not a member of the NAM; the others are also its heaviest subsidizers. Another report shows that the NAM uses its money and power for its own profits, and against the general welfare of the people of the United States.


The Garrett Committee's work is better known as the Mulhall investigation, thanks to the fact that "Colonel" Martin M. Mulhall, who was one of the chief secret lobbyists of the NAM, consented to expose that organization and did so in a series of articles which began running in the New York World June 29, 1913.

Mulhall's charges dealt chiefly with the NAM's corruption of members of Congress. The reader should note that Mulhall had been employed in 1903, the year the NAM became the chief labor-busting outfit in the country, and the year it decided to become a power in politics in Washington. It is still that power. What Mulhall proved is that it was not content to get anti-labor legislation through Congress as it is today by putting up the money to elect members, but that it passed out cold cash in a criminal manner.

Speaker Champ Clark could not turn deaf ears or blind eyes to the national scandal, although few wanted the World's charges aired. A committee headed by Majority Leader Finis I. Garrett of Tennessee finally began a 4-month inquiry and published 60 volumes of findings condemning the NAM as a crooked outfit.

In other words, the 10 years during which the NAM employed Mulhall, James A. Emery and other lobbyists, were also the 10 years it devoted its time to fighting labor, and coincidentally the 10 years in which it committed criminal acts for which private individuals would have gone to the penitentiary.

Said William I. McDonald, Michigan Progressive, of the Mulhall expose of the bribery of Congressmen by the NAM:

"The naive effrontery shown upon the witness stand by officers of the NAM in assuming that the committee would accept at face value the bald denials and ridiculous evasion and perversion of the meaning of actions all too plainly corrupt and sinister ... cannot be permitted to pass without mention. Their plainly shown attitude was that the American Congress was considered by them as their legislative department and was viewed with the same arrogant manner in which they viewed their other employees, and that those legislators who dare to oppose them would be disciplined in the same manner in which they were accustomed to discipline recalcitrant employees."

Of the NAM lobby Representative McDonald, who was the backbone of the Garrett investigation of Mulhall and Emery, NAM lobbyists, said:

"They did, by the expenditure of exorbitant sums of money, aid and attempt to aid in the election of those who they believed would readily serve their interests, and by the same means sought to and did accomplish the defeat of others whom they opposed. In carrying out these multifarious activities, they did not hesitate as to means, but made use of any method of corruption found to be effectual ... they instituted a new and complete system of commercialized treachery."

Caught and exposed as bribers and corrupters of the American Congress -- and incidentally of the American Way of Life about which it brags -- the NAM decided at that time to reorganize and to concentrate on another way in which to corrupt the American people to its way of doing business. It decided to corrupt public opinion. In doing so it planned on using every available method but concentrating chiefly on corrupting the American press. It was highly successful. It is still the greatest force controlling the American press today.


The real picture of American Fascism emerges from the numerous volumes of reports of the Committee on Education and Labor, better known as the La Follette investigation.

There is only one major difference between the Fascism practiced by the NAM and the Fascism practiced by its modern leaders, Hitler and Mussolini: the latter established by force what the former either wholly or partly succeeded in establishing by other means.

Hitler confiscated the treasuries of the labor unions and later established the so-called Labor Front which put the workmen of Germany in a state between serfdom and slavery, while Mussolini organized his so-called corporations in which labor and capital were supposed to have equal rights, whereas in truth capital runs Italy and the living standards of labor have been reduced to their worst point in modern history. The NAM could not destroy labor by official decrees, but it fought labor with its hired gunmen, thugs, racketeers, gangsters and murderers; it did employ poison gas in strikes, and machine guns; it did shoot and kill; and it did poison the minds of the majority of the American people by carrying on a campaign against labor and especially against labor unions, in 1,995 of the 2,000 daily newspapers of the country. The NAM needs no lessons in the way to corrupt a people by propaganda; it was in this business long before Dr. Goebbels came to power.

In the hearings of one day -- March 2, 1938, to be exact -- the following points were made for which documentary evidence was later entered into the record:

1. That the NAM is directed, controlled and financed by only 207 firms, each giving it more than $2,000; that the leading firms are General Motors, DuPont, Chrysler, Weir's National Steel and the Pennsylvania Railroad.

2. That the leading contributors to the NAM and the leading directors are also the leading contributors to a number of purely fascist, anti-Semitic and reactionary organizations such as the American Liberty League, the Crusaders, the Sentinels of the Republic, National Economy League, Farmers' Independence League and Johnstown Citizens' Committee, the last named a vigilante outfit later exposed as secretly started by the Mayor with $50,000 received from Bethlehem Steel.

3. That these 207 firms purchased 60% of all the tear gas used in the United States; they also used the majority of spies in industry, the majority of strikebreakers, the majority of criminals. The NAM is associated with the Metal Trades Association, the Associated Industries of Cleveland (and other large cities) and other similar organizations which have taken the leading part in industrial espionage and the use of violence in labor troubles.

4. That the NAM ran the largest propaganda network in America; that it worked this propaganda campaign in secrecy, and that it employed deceit as a method -- these are actual quotations from a summary published later. This point is especially important because right now the NAM is engaging in a larger campaign than ever in its history to poison the minds of the American people so that it will accept "free enterprise" rather than any plan for social justice and social security.

The foregoing charges were made by Robert Wohlforth, secretary of the La Follette Committee, which immediately began grilling witnesses it had called, notably W.B. Weisenberger, a vice-president, Noel Sargent, the secretary, J.A. Emery, chief counsel, and John C. Gall, attorney. The day was notable for the fact that these NAM officials made certain statements which were immediately proven absolute falsehoods after Senators La Follette and Thomas produced documentary evidence from the NAM files (which had been seized) proving the mendacity of the defenders of this native-fascist outfit.

In establishing the fact that the NAM was founded primarily to fight labor, and that it was still doing so, Senator La Follette introduced a statement published in 1904 in a NAM magazine called American Industries. In objecting to the only large union of its time -- 1904 -- this publication said:

"We are not opposed to good unionism if such exists anywhere. The American Federation brand of unionism, however, is un-American, illegal and indecent."

On the same subject, the usual NAM statement that it was not against unions but insisted on unions that were "properly conducted," the leading humorist of the time, Finley Peter Dunne, wrote:

("Shure," said Mr. Dooley, "if properly conducted. An' there we are; an' how would they have thim conducted? No strikes, no rules, no contracts, no scales, hardly iny wages an, dam few members.")


The O'Mahoney Monopoly Investigation did not disclose anything as sensational regarding the NAM as its bribery of Congressmen or its use of gangsters and poison gas, but its scores of volumes of evidence furnish a complete and unanswerable indictment of the entire American Big Business system. (The two most valuable volumes for the lay reader are Monograph 29 which deals with the 200 ruling industrial families, and Monograph 26 which reveals the NAM as the most powerful lobby and most sinister force in America; they are sold by the Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D. C., at $2 and 25c respectively.)

When the O'Mahoney committee released its Monograph 26 the newspapers of the nation, always happy to suppress anything that is critical of the hand that feeds it -- that is, Big Business, through the medium of advertising -- obliged by refraining from mentioning the matter at all, or, like the New York Times, published a report that lobbying had been condemned but omitted the name of the NAM.

The Times, which did publish a column story, and therefore did publish much more than other papers, nevertheless omitted most of the following quotations -- which will give the reader a taste of the tremendously important material Monograph 26 contains. (The figures in parentheses refer to the page numbers):

"The American people are confronted with the problem of who shall control the government" (1). The monograph then discusses the big pressure group, notably the American Legion lobby, farmers, peace groups, but concludes that the National Association of Manufacturers, the Chamber of Commerce, and their agents, the lawyers' associations, the newspaper publishers' associations, rule the country.


"From the beginning, business has been intent upon wielding economic power and, where necessary, political control for its own purposes. ... Even today, when the purposeful use of government power for the general welfare is more widely accepted than at any time in our history, government does not begin to approach the fusion of power and will characteristic of business" (1). Everyone is fighting for power, for control, in Washington, but "by far the largest and most important of these groups is to be found in 'business' ... as dominated by the 200 largest non-financial and the 50 largest financial corporations, and the employer and trade associations into which it and its satellites are organized" (3). The 200 non-financial corporations in 1935 controlled $60,000,000,000 of physical assets. The march of America toward public betterment "has been hindered, obstructed and at times apparently completely stopped by pressure groups" (5).

"Business ... has fought ... government ownership. (5) Through the press, public opinion and pressure groups it is possible to influence the political process. ... Both press and radio are, after all, 'big business' and even when they possess the highest integrity, they are the prisoners of their own beliefs."

Business, continues the report, operates on the principle that $60,000,000,000 can't be wrong.

"In this connection the business orientation of the newspaper press is a valuable asset. In the nature of things public opinion is usually well disposed toward business ... Newspapers have it in their power materially to influence public opinion on particular issues. ... With others, editorializing is practiced as a matter of course. And even where editors and publishers are men of the highest integrity, they are owners and managers of big business enterprises, and their papers inevitably reflect, at least to some extent, their economic interest. When organized business deliberately propagandizes the Country, using newspaper advertising as one medium, the press is a direct means of channeling business views into the public mind. ... Lawyers have remade constitutional guarantees in the image of business. ... The law, the newspaper press, and the advertising professions have all helped business by spreading this changed conception of the Jeffersonian idea" (10).

In other words, Business, using lawyers, the press and advertising, has undermined Jeffersonian democracy.

The report names the business pressure lobbies, notably the National Association of Manufacturers, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Edison Electric Institute (successor to N.E.L.A.), Association of Life Insurance Presidents, American Iron and Steel Institute, American Petroleum Institute, American Bankers Association, American Investment Bankers Association, American Bar Association, and adds: "Through the American Newspaper Publishers Association [Lords of the Press] the country's daily newspapers join their strength for business and against government." This is a most damning indictment. It did not appear in the Times. But the indictment against the corporations and the press goes even further.

"Public policy in the field of industrial relations has been formulated by Congress over the bitter opposition of organized industry, an opposition which is still continuing in a determined effort to change that policy. The economic power of business and the 'educational' persuasiveness of its newspaper, advertising, and legal allies enabled it between the years 1933 and 1937 to frustrate the initial efforts of the Federal Government to regulate labor relations (81). The NAM and the C. of C, are as one in their opposition to the N.L.R.A. ... The American Bar Association ... indicated its fundamental community of interest with business. The American Newspaper Publishers Association shares a similar community of interest (p. 82) ." This was also suppressed in the Times.

"National Association of Manufacturers' President Lund [Listerine Lund] in a press release on September 7, 1933, urged 'the strongest possible employer opposition to union organization' (97). Business has managed to maintain most of its control of industrial relations despite the efforts of labor and government to lessen it ... The staying power of corporate business, its resources and ability to give aid and assistance in the fields of law, of the newspaper press, and of advertising, have proved powerful weapons in this struggle, and the intensity of the battle on the labor relations field since 1933 has indicated their effectiveness."

Pages 171 and 172 of the report show how Big Business betrayed the nation for profits in the European War, and how in 1940 "business displayed much of the same attitude. ... Profits, taxes, loans, and so forth appeared more important to business than getting guns, tanks, and airplane motors into production."

"Speaking bluntly the government and the public are 'over a barrel' when it comes to dealing with business in time of war or other crisis. Business refuses to work except on terms which it dictates ... In effect this is blackmail."

And what is the final conclusion?

"Democracy in America is on the defensive. In the preceding pages it has been shown that pressure groups as now operating usually fail to promote the general welfare."

Since the NAM has been named as the most powerful of the pressure groups, and the publishers' association one of its two agents, the minor one being the bar association, it is merely putting two and two together to arrive at the statement that Big Business is the main enemy of the general welfare of the American people, and the press the main weapon of this enemy.


The main objective of the NAM today is the corruption of public opinion. Of course, the organization calls it "enlightenment" or the spreading of the doctrine of "free enterprise," but it is nevertheless propaganda, and since it is aimed to insure the private profits of the few, as against the general welfare of the many, it is propaganda that corrupts.

The La Follette investigation showed that, after it was caught bribing Congressmen to pass anti-labor laws, the NAM changed its tactic to cooperating with the editors and publishers of all the newspapers of the country, all but one of them being dependent upon advertising and all but three or four of them having a record of journalistic prostitution.

Here is a short summary of the findings of the La Follette Committee on the NAM propaganda campaign:

1. Daily newspapers. Realizing that public thought is shaped to a large degree by the newspapers, NAM Public Information program regularly covered the newspaper field to industry's advantage.

a. Bulletin to newspaper editors. Publishers and editorial writers were furnished with propaganda entitled Voice of American Industry.

b. Daily comic feature. "Uncle Abner Says" is big business, anti-labor, propaganda placed in papers by NAM but the public is not told that fact.

c. News stories. NAM sent spot news releases to local papers, Associated Press, United Press, International News Service, news syndicates.

2. Weekly newspapers. More than 5,000 weeklies propagandized regularly.

3. Advertising.

a. Full page ads in newspapers favoring industry.

b. Outdoor ads. "The American Way," etc.

4. Radio. Good will for industry was propagandized in many ways:

a. NAM program, "The American Family Robinson."

b. Foreign language transcriptions.

c. Propaganda furnished news commentators.

5. Motion Pictures. One of the many NAM propaganda projects was called "Men and Machines" with narration by Lowell Thomas.

6. Secretly bought columnists. Example: George E. Sokolsky, put on $1,000 a month payroll while writing column syndicated by the New York Herald Tribune.

7. Bought college professors. "You and your nation's affairs," or "Six Star Service." The La Follette Report said contributors to this service included Gus W. Dyer, professor of economics, Vanderbilt University; Eliot Jones, professor of transportation, Stanford University; Walter Spahr, secretary, Economists National Committee on Monetary Policy; Clarence W. Fackler, assistant professor of economics, New York University. Articles of the following writers appeared only in the first few weeks: Neil Carothers, director, College of Business Administration, Lehigh University; James S. Thomas, president, Clarkson College of Technology; T.N. Carver, professor emeritus, Harvard.

Contributions from the following were added: Harley L. Lutz, professor of public finance, Princeton; Erik McK. Ericksson, associate professor of history, University of Southern California; J. E. LeRossignol, dean, college of business administration, University of Nebraska.

Whereas the National Electric Light Association (N.E.L.A.) spent about $25,000,000 each year (sometimes as high as $29,000,000) to turn public opinion against municipal and public ownership of light and power plants, the NAM lobby got free ads because it was able to blackmail the newspapers, radio, movies and billboard corporations with threats that its membership would withdraw commercial advertising already placed.

The La Follette report tells in detail how labor was smeared, how everything for the general benefit of the American people labeled "radcal," "red," "unsound" and how men and organizations opposed to the corrupt Big Business program of the NAM were smeared as "propagandists," "impatient reformers" and "disturbers." The NAM did not hesitate, says the report, to present an "uncritical and false picture." The aim of the NAM was the same as that of the old N.E.L.A.: to pervert the public mind so that it accepted the big corporation program although that program was and is a program for the benefit of 250 ruling families and the enemy of 52,000,000 wage earners. This is happening today.

The new propaganda agency of the NAM is called the National Industrial Information Committee (N.I.I.C.). In 1942, when I discovered its campaign to raise $1,000,000 for a fund to fight labor, it denied that it had any relation with the NAM although it was part of the latter's office, had the same phone, and was operated by the same agents. In 1943, however, it sent a letter to its sustainers saying that it was still affiliated, but was becoming more and more a separate organization. These technicalities are of no importance. What is important is that the worst Fascists of the reactionary clique which bosses the NAM are the very men who are behind this new propaganda movement.

The N.I.I.C. claims it has 350 of the leading industrialists in its ranks. It was prompted to begin a big campaign in 1942 because the various Congressional committees, notably the Truman and O'Mahoney, and numerous official reports, notably those of Toland and Thurman Arnold, had exposed American Big Business as linked to Nazi Germany in the cartels, as actually doing business with Hitler and planning to do so in case of war, and to resume doing business should a war involve the two countries. Corporations -- Standard Oil for one -- had been branded traitors in Senate hearings, and the news could not be suppressed that it was due to the monopoly arrangements with I.G. Farbenindustrie that America had a shortage of aluminum for making airplanes, no synthetic rubber at all, a lack of tungsten, carboloy and other vital materials, no substitute for quinine (atabrine), etc. The very same corporations and men who had been exposed by Monograph 29 as ruling America -- notably Mellon -- were shown to be the men of the Nazi cartels. And on top of this scandal the labor press was proving that Big Business was refusing to convert to war, that Big Money was on a sit-down strike, and that, in short, the men of wealth and power were the traitors while the men in the fields, factories and workshops were working to win the war.

It is true that the New York World Telegram and the 18 other papers controlled by Roy Howard of the Scripps-Howard press, and the 19 papers controlled by America's No. 1 Nazi, William Randolph Hearst, did their best to whitewash Aluminum Corporation, Standard Oil, General Motors and General Electric and all the other members of the Nazi trusts. But it is also true that the scandal was so big that enough of it became generally known to cover (not smear) Big Business with the truthful muck of Fascism. Before and after Pearl Harbor America's foremost enemy in the war against Fascism was the ruling clique of the NAM.

Said the N.I.I.C. appeal which asked every business to pay a sum to its propaganda fund in proportion to its income:

"Why war increases your need of the N.I.I.C.: Because winning the war must mean also restoring a method of living that is traditionally and characteristically American. This the American people must be told and retold. ... Because full public confidence in management's motives is an essential raw material to the fabric of maximum arms production and victory. This confidence must be built and held. Because private enterprise must be built firmly into the people's ideals for the postwar world."

This statement also invites anti-labor, anti-progressive corporations to help keep America ignorant of the great liberal and democratic movement throughout the world which is based on the belief that all democratic peoples after overthrowing the main enemy of democracy, Fascism, can remake the world for the benefit of the millions of men who were at the front, instead of the special interests represented by the N.I.I.C.


A glance at the list of officers and executive committee of the N.I.I.C. reveals that whereas many NAM leaders, who are also America's biggest industrialists, now working on a victory program are not on the N.I.I.C. list, the most notorious anti-liberals and labor-fighters are running the new propaganda outfit. Here are some of the N.I.I.C. executives:

J. H. Rand, Jr., President of Remington Rand. Originator of the Mohawk Valley Formula, the most notorious strike-breaking technique in our history, exposed by La Follette Committee. It was Rand who instructed all manufacturers to use the newspapers for propagating big anti-labor lies during strikes, and to start the "back- to-work" movements.

Walter D. Fuller, president of Curtis Publishing Company, ex-president of the NAM and still director. Fuller is largely responsible for the pro-fascist attitude of his Saturday Evening Post, which in the 1920's began a series of articles praising Mussolini and which more recently published two native-Nazi articles, "The Case Against the Jew" and "Will Labor Lose the War?" In his listing of 6 American fascist men and organizations, Attorney General (now Justice) Jackson denounced the Saturday Evening Post as un-American, anti-democratic. (Source: Law Society Journal, Boston, November, 1940.)

H. W. Prentis, Jr., ex-president NAM, president of Armstrong Cork Co., pro-Franco, pro-Fascist. Listed as un-American, anti-democratic by Mr. Justice Jackson for attacking American democratic institutions at the time he was president of the NAM. Mr. Justice Jackson quoted Prentis saying: "Hope for the future of our republic does not lie in more and more democracy."

J. Howard Pew, president of the Sun Oil Company (Sunoco), and chairman of the N.I.I.C. Exposed by Senator Gillette as main subsidizer of Republican Party in Pennsylvania. The Pew family owns $75,628,000 of Sunoco stock. According to A. H. Sulzberger, publisher and half owner of the New York Times, Pew arranged the 1936 Sunoco advertising only for papers favoring Landon. He withdrew a big ad contract from the New York Times. In 1940 the Times went Republican. The C.I.O. News (Jan. 27, 1941) accused the Pew family of anti-labor tactics in the Sun Shipbuilding strike when the Pews called out the fire department to fight strikers. During the Liberty League investigation it was disclosed that the Pews subsidized the Sentinels, Crusaders, and other native fascist subsidiaries of the League and the fascist Associated Farmers of California. When the U.S. Government needed auxiliary ships for the Navy, J. Howard and Joseph N. Pew, who had given $90,000 to the Willkie campaign, got the same sum for their 12-year-old yacht Egeria. At the same time the U.S. got several yachts for nothing -- Major Bowes, S.P. Loomis, W.P. Murphy, Joseph Seaman and Robert S. Herick -- but paid $180,000 for H. E. Manville's, $275,000 for W.B. Thompson's -- Source: Pearson & Allen, January 20, 1941.)

When Senator Black's lobby investigation committee seized the records of the Sentinels of the Republic, it found letters of its executives, W. Cleveland Runyon and Alexander Lincoln, president, saying, "The New Deal is Communist," "the Jewish threat is a real one" and "the old-line Americans of $1200 a year want a Hitler." Backers of Sentinels: Pitcairn Family, $91,000; I. Howard Pew, Sunoco, $6,000.

Jasper E. Crane, vice-president DuPonts, and Lammot DuPont.

Charles R. Hook, president of the American Rolling Mills, and ex-president of the NAM. Hook is also one of the backers of the Committee to Uphold Constitutional Government, a strike-breaking, anti-labor native fascist outfit in which chain publisher Gannett is a leading figure and former German agent Rumely an organizer. On January 8, 1942, the National Labor Relations Board ordered Hook to dis-establish his company union, accused Hook of violating the Wagner Act by vilifying, ridiculing and denouncing unions, the C.I.O., and labor organizers; espionage of union meetings, pilfering labor records; threatening workers; enticing workers to resign from unions; sponsoring organizations of employees devoted to combating unions. During the trial Hook's speeches before the NAM were read in which he pleaded for peace, unity, friendship with the Unions.

Colby M. Chester, and William B. Warner, respectively heads of General Foods and McCalf's magazine, both former heads of NAM, now vice-chairman and member of the executive committee of the N.I.I.C., were president and vice-president respectively of the NAM when the La Follette investigation found it guilty of employing an army of spies, attacking the Wagner Act, and being the "fountainhead of attacks on labor."


On September 17, 1942, the resolutions committee of the National Association of Manufacturers met in a secret session at the Hotel Pennsylvania, New York, to prepare a program for the December NAM convention. What took place in that closed meeting amounts to a conspiracy against the government, against the people, and against winning the war. The objectives of the NAM, overriding all other considerations, are: more profits, now and after the war, the destruction of the labor movement, and the wiping out of all New Deal progress.

The delegates heard its research expert, Dr. Claude Robinson, report that the public, when asked which group was most guilty of war profiteering, was answering: big business, 49%; government officials, 40%; labor leaders, 11%. To the question as to what was the main concern of the people today, the answers were predominantly: "The winning of the war; next important, unemployment in the postwar period." The NAM delegates, after considerable discussion, then took their stand -- directly opposed to that of the people as reported to them: Thirty-five delegates voted for dealing with war and postwar problems on an equal basis, fifteen for emphasizing "winning the war" while dealing with postwar issues, and only three for "winning the war" as the only problem for 1943.

Here are some of the things said at their closed meeting of the NAM resolutions committee:

"When James D. Cunningham, president of Republic Flow Meters Co., urged the NAM 1943 program to stick to one issue, winning the war, because "if we don't win the war, there won't be a postwar," Lammot DuPont, chairman of the board of E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co., Liberty Leaguer, supporter of native fascist organizations, replied:

"Deal with the government and the rest of the squawkers the way you deal with a buyer in a seller's market! If the buyer wants to buy, he has to meet your price. Nineteen hundred and twenty-nine to 1942 was the buyer's market -- we had to sell on their terms. When the war is over, it will be a buyer's market again. But this is a seller's market. They want what we've got. Good. Make them pay the right price for it. The price isn't unfair or unreasonable. And if they don't like the price, why don't they think it over?"

"The way to view the issue is this: Are there common denominators for winning the war and the peace? 1f there are, then, we should deal with both in 1943. What are they? We will win the war (a) by reducing taxes on corporations, high income brackets, and increasing taxes on lower incomes; (b) by removing the unions from any power to tell industry how to produce, how to deal with their employers, or anything else; (c) by destroying any and all government agencies that stand in the way of free enterprise."

DuPont's voice was the dominating one at the sessions. The chairman of the committee was Crawford of Thompson Products.

Others who took a leading part were Rand, who was once the chairman of Charles E. Coughlin's Committee for the Nation and Luther B. Stein, southern bourbon and official of the Belknap Hardware Co. Certain important financial and industrial organizations were not represented. These include J.P. Morgan, Rockefeller, Chrysler, General Electric and Westinghouse interests. Several others, who were represented, opposed the program dictated in the main by DuPont and Crawford.

Other notable utterances by delegates not yet publicly named:

"If we are to come out of this war with a Marxist brand of National Socialism, then I say negotiate peace now and bring Adolf over here to run the show. He knows how. He's efficient. He can do a better job than any of us can and a damned sight better job than Roosevelt, who is nothing but a left-wing bungling amateur."

"We've got Roosevelt on the run. We licked production and the Axis is licking him. The finger points where it belongs. We'll keep him on the run. Let's spend some real money this year, what the hell! -- it'll only cost us 20 percent, the rest would go in taxes anyway."

A big business delegate told of being asked by F.D.R. to join an unofficial economic committee of five to work out postwar plans, involving visits abroad. "I kidded Washington along until I found out all I wanted to know and then begged off because of other activities," he laughed.

A lot of other things were said, all heading up to the great conspiracy being engineered now by the NAM, which it intends to carry on to the next election. This includes:

A fight against management-labor committees (credited by government officials with a prominent part in getting war production going); driving women out of industry after the war; freeing Wall Street speculation from all restrictions; a propaganda program in high schools and colleges; wiping out of all social agencies set up under the New Deal. Together with this program goes the clear threat to sabotage war production, and to seize on every development to undermine the President's prestige, unless the NAM's demands for taxes that make the poor pay for the war are met.

The facts of the NAM's secret meeting, of which the foregoing is a partial and necessarily inadequate summary, have not appeared in the commercial press, although they are known to all the news agencies and to every newspaper editor in the country.

As forecast by this secret meeting, the NAM convened and elected Frederick C. Crawford president for 1943. This is the man who keeps a picture of President Roosevelt hanging upside down in his office next to a picture of Mrs. Roosevelt with a pipe in her mouth. He also keeps a loaded shotgun and tells people he'll use it if any legislation is passed which he does not like. This is the same Crawford who told his colleagues of the NAM:

"We are fighting for our freedom. Freedom from renegotiation of contracts. Freedom from Pansy Perkins. Freedom from Prostituting Attorney Arnold. Freedom from the Alice-in Wonderland War Labor Board. Freedom from that ... (unprintable) gentleman on the hill."

As The Pilot said, "Crawford's fighting a war, but it's a war against the American people and against the coming defeat of Hitler."

Crawford has violated the Wagner Act and has been forced by several N.L.R.B. decisions to stop using spies, stop employing a company union, stop interfering with unionization. But the government did not make him hire union men at 8¢ more per hour than non-union men, and therefore there were many machines in his Cleveland plant, which make valves for airplanes, which stood idle.

Workmen pasted stickers on them. These read: "This machine works for Hitler."

So do many of the biggest men in the National Association of Manufacturers.



Lobby Investigation Report (Senator Black).
Garrett Committee Report.
Committee on Education and Labor (La Follette Committee) 76th Congress, Senate Report No. 6, Part 6 (especially pp. 159, 162-3).
Investigation of Concentration of Economic Power, T.N.E.C., Monograph 26.
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:27 am



THE American Legion is one of the largest and most powerful organizations in this country. The men who control it and have been in the saddle since its inception have made it one of the leading reactionary forces in America. The Legion is composed of a vast majority of men who are the victims of a plan financed by our ruling families. There is probably no greater example of mass misguidance in American history since World War I and the present Global War than the history of the million men of the Legion and its handful of misleaders.

An important movement is now under way to take the American Legion out of the control of the bankers, corporations, corporation lawyers, big business men and native Fascists who have controlled it ever since it was started. That it can be one of the greatest forces for progress or reaction depends on the rank and file membership, and what they do in the next year or two.

If any reader is unaware of the fact that the Legion was organized by special moneyed interests, and that it has been in fascist hands a large part of its existence, the fault is with the daily newspapers which have suppressed the facts. The facts are:

1. In order to keep American soldiers from getting what was promised them in the World War, namely, a "Land Fit for Heroes," and to check what was termed "radical" thought for a better world, certain officers, aided by a big fund raised by corporations, founded the Legion.

2. Almost all Legion commanders have been corporation men.

3. More than one Legion commander has come out for Fascism.

4. The Legion has been the greatest unofficial force attempting to smash the labor movement; it was the greatest strike-breaking force in America until recently.

5. The Legion announced its policy of 100% Americanism; it denounced all other Isms, but never in its entire history did it publish one word against Fascism.

6. Year after year, from its beginning, the Legion was listed as the No. 1 enemy of civil liberties in the annual report of the American Civil Liberties Union, which published documentary evidence to prove this charge.

7. The Legion was found to be an undemocratic force and its control by a handful of politicians and corporation lawyers was also found to be undemocratic.

8. When one liberal post of the Legion published a pamphlet favoring genuine democratic Americanism, the Legion moved to suppress it.

9. Only 1,000,000 of the 4,000,000 men entitled to belong have ever been members. Legion statistics show it to be composed of the wealthier elements, and few working men.

10. In 1943 while Commander Roane Waring, aided by the Hearst press, smeared labor, a movement was started among union men in the Legion for knocking out native fascist control.

Anyone who looks into the origin of the American Legion will find that it was organized by the agents of big business and profits for the purpose of destroying the great American idealism of the Army in France. We really believed in making the world safe for democracy. All of us who were in the Army of Occupation believed that Wilson would win through and that Lloyd George and the others would live up to the wartime promises, which were:

"A New World." -- Lloyd George (Note: Similar to Wallace's Century of the Common Man of today).

"A New Deal for Everybody." -- Lloyd George (Similar to F.D.R.'s New Deal a generation later).

"Industrial Democracy." Wilson (Most of Congress today is trying to smash the few gains labor has made, rather than enlarge industrial democracy).

"A Land Fit for Heroes." -- Promised by prime ministers, kings and presidents on the wining side.

"End of the Conflict Between Capital and Labor; Workingmen's Cooperation in Industry." -- Promised by Giolitti to the workmen of Italy and by Charles M. Schwab of Bethlehem Steel, spokesman for U.S. industry.

Professor William Gellermann, in his book The American Legion as Education, gives all the evidence which he and other researchers have gathered on the reasons the Legion was started by such men as Col. Bill Donovan, Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., Major (now Congressman) Ham Fish, and Captain Ogden Mills, the multi-millionaire who later became Secretary of the Treasury. This is his summary:

"The American Legion was in no sense a 'spontaneous expression ... of Americans who helped crush autocracy.' On the contrary, it is evident that it was intended to circumvent any spontaneous organization on the part of ex-servicemen. ... The morale of the American Army after the armistice was unsatisfactory. ... Those responsible for the initiation of the American Legion have been satisfied with the results. ... It not only met the threat of Bolshevism at the end of the World War but has been a satisfactory antidote to 'radicalism' throughout the entire postwar period and promises to be so for a number of years yet to come.

"It required a quarter of a million dollars to finance the American Legion during its organization period. This money was borrowed ... but it seemed expedient to make it appear that the money came exclusively from Legion members. No one has yet satisfactorily explained the letter on Swift & Co. stationery. ..."


"Chicago, December 26, 1919"

"(Addressed to numerous packing interests in Chicago).

"At a meeting held on December 23, 1919, presided over by Mr. Thomas E. Wilson, there were present representatives of the different stockyard interests and it was voted that they contribute $10,000 toward a campaign for funds for the American Legion.

"A national drive is being made for the Legion and the amount asked from Illinois is $100,000, Mr. James B. Forgan, chairman of the First National Bank being treasurer of the fund for Illinois.

"The Illinois enrollment in the Legion, in comparison with other states, is very much less than it should be. We are all interested in the Legion, the results it will obtain, and the ultimate effect in helping to offset radicalism.

"It is very important that we assist this worthy work, and at the meeting I was asked by the chairman to write to the different stockyard interests for their contribution.

"In prorating the amounts it was suggested that we use an arbitrary percentage as a basis and the amount you are asked to contribute is $100.00.

"Will you please make check for this amount payable to Mr. Thomas E. Wilson, chairman?

"Kindly send me a copy of your letter to Mr. Wilson.

"Very truly yours,

"Nathan B. Higbie."

Radicalism -- the idealistic desire of all our soldiers for a better world, a new deal, a land fit for heroes, a greater democracy -- was the enemy of the founders of the American Legion, just as today it is the enemy of the Dies Committee and just as it is the enemy of fascist forces the world over. They always pin the red flag on it, call it vile names, denounce it in the corrupt commercial newspapers, and organize all the forces of wealth and power against the desire of the majority of the people for higher wages, a better standard of living, a truer democracy.

Gellermann's book concludes: "The American Legion is a potential force in the direction of Fascism in the U.S. ... In the American Legion program of suppression [of free speech, labor rights, minorities, books, public assembly, strikes, etc., all detailed previously] we see Fascism in its incipient states. The American Legion is irritated by those movements in American society which seem to threaten the status quo."


One of the first commanders of the Legion was Alvin Owsley, of Texas, and the 36th Division. He was elected at the San Francisco convention which went on record by sending an invitation to Mussolini to make the principal address. Learning of the pro-fascist tendency of the Legion and its new commander, the N.E.A. Service (Cleveland syndicate operated by the Scripps-Howard press) had one of its star men, Edward Thierry, interview Commander Owsley. This copyright interview was released December 9, 1922, and was published throughout the country on that and the following days. Here is the main part:

"'If ever needed, the American Legion stands ready to protect our country's institutions and ideals as the Fascisti dealt with the destructionists who menaced Italy!'

"Colonel Alvin Owsley, commander of the American Legion, made this statement in an exclusive interview with N.E.A. service today.

"'By taking over the government?' he was asked.

"'Exactly that,' declared Owsley. 'The American Legion is fighting every element that threatens our democratic government -- Soviets, anarchists, I.W.W.'s, revolutionary socialists and every other "red".'

"'Should the day ever come when they menace the freedom of our representative government, the Legion would not hesitate to take things into its own hands -- to fight the "reds" as the Fascisti of Italy fought them.'

"The Legion commander said the world spread of revolutionary doctrine had to be taken seriously. He said patriotic Italians had been forced to take extreme measures which probably would never be necessary here. But he emphasized the significance of what the Fascisti had done.

"'Do not forget,' he said, 'that the Fascisti are to Italy what the American Legion is to the United States. And that Mussolini, the new premier, was the commander of the Legion -- the ex-service- men-of Italy. ... The Legion is not in politics. ... But there is plenty of politics in the Legion -- potential power, I mean.'"

In 1937 this writer was editor of a new magazine, Ken, owned by David Smart, owner of Esquire. Smart agreed to publish a series of articles on the Legion until he found out that one of its commanders, Franklin D'Olier, was also head of the Prudential Insurance Company, and would refuse him advertising if the truth were told. He suppressed the entire series of articles.

In order to document the charge of Fascism against Owsley and to give him a chance to retract his fascist views, if he had changed his mind during the course of fifteen years, Ken's editor wrote Owsley, who was then U.S. Minister to Ireland. The letter concluded: "I write to question you whether there has been any change in your opinion, or whether you wish to make any changes, before (N.E.A.) gives me permission to quote copyright article."

By the time he answered, the Honorable Alvin Owsley was U.S. Minister to Denmark. Here is his reply:

"(U.S. Seal)

"Legation of the United States of America

"Copenhagen, January 6, 1938,

"You have been good enough to refer to my comment, the contents of which is reported as an interview to the news service of the N.E.A. in 1922, during the time I was privileged to serve as National Commander of the American Legion.

"While not recalling independently the interview, no doubt I at the time reflected the real sentiment of the hopeful and confident legionnaire in the light of history then before us. We shall ever keep in mind the American Legion is pledged to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America, Hence any action taken by the Legion will be within the Constitution.

"Now only the newly elected National Commander is authorized to speak for the Legion.

"You recall that the instructions and regulations of the Diplomatic Service deny me the privilege of expressing an opinion in regard to the public affairs of any foreign government or discussing, outside the State Department, any issue of national or international significance.

"With cordial regards,

"Yours very truly,

"Alvin Mansfield Owsley

"American Minister."

Mr. Owsley has never repudiated his endorsement of Mussolini and Fascism.

On May 4, 1935, the New England Methodist Council met at Lowell, Mass., where a member of the American Legion, and a former state chaplain, introduced the following resolution:

"We warn our people against the approaching menace of Fascism ... sponsored quite noticeably by the American Legion, which attempts to disguise itself in the terms of patriotism." The resolution was adopted.

But, almost every year from 1922 on, when Mussolini was invited by the San Francisco convention, new invitations were sent to him, and many Legion delegations visited him and returned to America filled with praise of the Duce, Fascism, and trains running on time.

Again in 1930 the Boston Legion convention invited Mussolini to attend. Labor unions protested and forced a withdrawal.

In 1931, Ralph T. O'Neill, national commander, presented to the fascist ambassador de Martino resolutions passed by the National Executive Committee of the Legion in favor of Mussolini.

In 1935 Col. William E. Easterwood, national vice-commander of the Legion, invited Mussolini to the Chicago convention, made the Duce an honorary member of the American Legion, and pinned a button on him. (Since the Legion has no honorary members, this action was later declared unconstitutional.)

But the most important documentary evidence of all exists in the files of the first un-American Committee, the predecessor of the Dies Committee. This story was distorted or suppressed in 99% of the American press, and is therefore dismissed with a printed shrug in all official Legion publications. Here is a small part of the evidence:

In 1934 leading members of the Legion conspired with Wall Street brokers and other big business men to upset the government of the United States and establish a fascist regime. They asked Smedley Butler, noted former commander of the U.S. Marines, to head the American fascist march on Washington. Butler not only refused, he insisted on exposing the plot, and when newspapers refused to print the truth, he spent several years telling it from the lecture platform.

General Butler testified :

"Shortly after MacGuire [Gerald G. MacGuire, employee of the brokerage firm of Grayson M.P. Murphy, and one of the founders of the American Legion] first came to see me he arranged for Robert Sterling Clark, a New York broker, to come to my house. ... (MacGuire proposed Butler raise several hundred thousand Legionnaires to take over Washington). To be perfectly fair to Mr. MacGuire he didn't seem bloodthirsty. He suggested that 'We might go along with Roosevelt and do with him what Mussolini did with the King of Italy.'"

Butler thought this was treason. He arranged to have a friend, the newspaper reporter Paul Comly French, present at subsequent talks with MacGuire. French testified before the McCormack-Dickstein Committee:

"He (MacGuire) shoved a letter across his (Butler's) desk saying it was from Louis Johnson of West Virginia, former national commander of the American Legion. MacGuire said Johnson wrote he would be in 'to discuss what we have talked about.'

"'That's just what we are discussing now,' he told me.

"During our conversation he mentioned that Henry Stephens of North Carolina, another former national commander of the American Legion, was interested in the plan."

The Congressional Committee also heard testimony from James Van Zandt, commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, which completely supported that of General Butler and admitted knowledge of this plot. Butler concluded his own testimony by suggesting that the Committee question several persons on the subject of the plot to lead a Legion army to establish a fascist regime in Washington, and notably: Grayson M.P. Murphy, Governor Ely of Massachusetts, William Doyle, former department commander of the Legion in Massachusetts, and Commander Frank N. Belgrano of the Legion. Belgrano was called to Washington but secret pressure was exerted and he was never called to testify. Murphy was a director of Guaranty Trust, a Morgan bank; also director of Anaconda Copper, Goodyear, Bethlehem Steel. He was treasurer of the DuPont-financed Liberty League. He was decorated by Mussolini and made a Commander of the Crown of Italy. It was Murphy who raised a large part of the big money which started the Legion in Paris in 1919.

Clark, broker at 11 Wall Street, was also one of the Liberty League financiers. Butler testified that Clark said: "I have got $30,000,000 and I don't want to lose it. I am willing to spend half of the thirty millions to save the other half." In Butler's presence Clark phoned MacGuire to go ahead with a $45,000 fund to use at the American Legion convention to put through a resolution in favor of maintaining the gold standard. Such a resolution was passed.

When finally the McCormack-Dickstein Committee published its findings, it suppressed certain parts of General Butler's testimony, notably the phrase "and in about two weeks the Liberty League appeared," thus connecting the Liberty League with the Legion plot. Also suppressed: French's testimony that McGuire said he could get financing for a fascist putsch from John W. Davis, Morgan attorney, or Perkins of National City Bank; and that the guns would come from the Remington Arms; and that "one of the DuPonts is on the board of directors of the Liberty League and they own a controlling interest in Remington Arms Co."

Some of the most sensational parts of the testimony were suppressed. Most papers suppressed the whole story or threw it down by ridiculing it. Nor did the press later publish the Mc-Cormack-Dickstein report which stated that every charge Butler made and French corroborated had been proven true. The official report concludes:

"Evidence was obtained showing that certain persons had made an attempt to establish a fascist organization in this country. There is no question but that these attempts were discussed, were planned, and might have been placed in execution when and if the financial backers deemed it expedient."

All the principals in the case were American Legion officials and financial backers.

The evidence of actual Fascism in the Legion is endless. Its record of anti-labor activities is one of the most violent chapters in American history. No less than 50 illegal acts of violence were committed in 1920, according to the 1921 report of the American Civil Liberties Union. Farmers Non-Partisan League speakers were tarred and feathered, crusading editors were beaten up, a concert by Fritz Kreisler broken up and strike- breaking in uniform was a commonplace. Kidnapping is a major crime but in 1935 Nick Bins, a racketeer, and several of his fellow members of the Racine Legion committed this crime. A newspaper man, posing as a customer, got Nick Bins to agree to do another kidnapping. Bins said (before a hidden microphone) that he would not murder the victim, but break his legs. There would be no difficulty if he were caught, said Bins, because all Racine judges are "100% OK" and especially Judge Belden, "a brother Legionnaire." For references for kidnapping and slugging, Bins suggested phoning "Chief Lutter of Racine." A $10 bill was handed Bins. Despite all this evidence it was almost impossible to get the law to act but when Bins was finally jailed a group of Legionnaires kept him company in his cell and shouted they had "fixed" the case. A defense fund for Bins, "a fellow Legionnaire," was supported by the Chamber of Commerce. National headquarters of the Legion took no action except to expel Rahman-De Bella and John Philip Sousa posts for supporting a labor union at the very same time.

In 1937, however, the national commander, Harry Colmery, issued an order warning the Legion that in the future no strike-breaking was to be done in uniform. This was, of course, an admission that from 1919 to 1937 the Legion had been one of the main anti-labor strikebreaking forces in the nation. Vigilanteism was endorsed, and the Legionnaires were not told to be neutral in strikes, but to leave off their uniforms, buttons and caps when they became strikebreakers.

The American Legion hasn't changed its fascist spots since Pearl Harbor. Since it was organized by big business in 1919 it has become the leading agency of the members of the National Association of Manufacturers. It has repaid its organizers, subsidizers and owners by becoming the main anti-labor and strikebreaking agency in the country.

When Roane Waring, Memphis utility executive, was chosen national commander of the Legion in September, 1942, he pledged that body's full support to the President and fulsomely urged that capital and industry as well as labor and agriculture be conscripted. The Legion has long been on record for equality of sacrifice in winning a war, conscription of money as well as of human life. Less than two months later, Waring, at an informal luncheon given to New York publishers, accused the administration of introducing "regimentation" and "communism." The $25,0000 salary limitation, he declared to his picked and sympathetic audience, was communistic and would "stifle personal endeavor, private enterprise, free initiative, ambition and the right of a man to earn what he can." He apparently had no objections to wage stabilization for workers. The Justice Department's monopoly suit against the A.P. he described as "stifling freedom of speech, freedom of contract. ..." And of course he added to these stiflers the usual NAM refrain of private energy, private ability and private interest.

Since then Waring has been touring the country denouncing unions and threatening to shoot strikers, delivering a particularly anti-labor, anti-democratic diatribe to the soldiers at Fort Bragg. In words of NAM vintage he began by attacking those people concerned about the future of "Sandwich Island Hottentots or the Patagonians" and warned the soldiers that if they want to live in a better post-war world they must be prepared to return from this war and fight social reform. "The Legion has fought and will continue to fight these un-American tenets. When this war is over there will be more freak Isms, more Utopian crackpots, social politicians ... who will trot out schemes for bringing on the millennium. ... Your job will be to fight them to the last ditch. ..."

Post Commander Jack Carrier of Minneapolis has taken Waring to task for violating the Legion constitution, which forbids not only strikebreaking but oratorical anti-labor activities. Carrier wrote Waring:

"The daily press currently carries stories of speeches made by you ... saying that all strikers should be shot, etc. It seems to the writer that you have strayed a long way from the preamble of our constitution and the stand of the Legion as mandated at the Cleveland convention.

"In fact, your rantings smack a great deal of the diatribe currently being put out by Hitler, Goebbels, et al. Their move was to destroy the organized labor movement in Germany, and your mouthings bear a startling resemblance to their tactics.

"No one ... denies you the right to do or say anything you may desire as an individual, but I do challenge your right to make such statements while wearing the uniform of the American Legion. Take off your Legion cap and put on the uniform of the National Association of Manufacturers.

"If you are the man and citizen that the American Legion pictures you to be, you will resign as national commander of the American Legion and cease fomenting disunity, intolerance and class hatred."

In May, 1943, meeting in Indianapolis, the executive committee of the American Legion continued its anti- American, Big Business, pro-NAM, anti-labor program by taking the following steps:

1. Endorsing the anti-labor program of the new Ku Klux Klan movement which started in Texas and which calls itself the Christian American Association.

2. Approving the proposal to accept $20,000,000 from the corporations for an "Americanism program" which is nothing more than the "Free Enterprise" or "The American Way" program of the NAM (which incidentally caused the collapse of 1929, with 13,000,000 unemployed in 1933, and which fought the New Deal and opposes all new deals, square deals and the Century of the Common Man).

Suppressed generally in the newspapers -- but reported by Federated Press, which serves the liberal-labor press -- was the action of the Legion committee in joining the fascist Christian American Association campaign for laws to prohibit the closed or union shop in the United States.

The Legion has now organized a World War II committee whose purpose will be to get the 10,800,000 veterans of the present war against Fascism to join the organization whose most notable act in more than 30 years is an act of omission: failure and refusal to fight Fascism. It was this new committee which introduced a resolution at executive session which states that "the American way of life has always endeavored to see to it that every citizen" enjoyed "free and unimpaired opportunity to accept gainful employment." This itself is cockeyed because no such opportunity exists for long periods of time.

The resolution then charges that "certain laws, regulations and contracts ... may limit that opportunity" for the returned forces. This is aimed at the Wagner Act, the Magna Carta of labor, the most important success of the New Deal, which has curbed the profiteers, anti-labor employers and native Fascists (who were exposed by the La Follette Committee as employing tens of thousands of spies, thugs, and murderers, poison gas and Thompson machine guns, and spending millions annually in illegal ways to keep American labor underpaid, terrorized, and non-union).

The Legion resolution concludes that "we recommend to the national executive committee that they take such steps as are necessary" so that no veteran of this war "shall be forced to join any trade union or other organization in order to gain employment." This is the same program the K.K.K. Christian Americans introduced in Texas.

The National Association of Manufacturers, through its affiliate, the National Industrial Council, is spending $1,000,000 a year propagandizing America against labor, against unions, against the New Deal, against any social security plan, against the $25,000 or any other salary limitation, against the Wagner Act, against human progress.

It employs "secrecy and deception" according to the final report of the La Follette investigation -- also college professors, newspaper columnists, journalists, clergymen and other propagandists whose aim is to pervert American public opinion.

Now the NAM has sent two of its subsidizers, representatives of the Owens-Illinois Glass Company and the General Tire Company, to arrange a $20,000,000 Americanism campaign through which the NAM propaganda will be spread by the Legion.

In the La Follette Report of the 76th Congress, 1st Session, the Owens-Illinois Glass Co. is listed among the employers of spies, detectives and racketeers to prevent labor from organizing; also as a large contributor, along with the General Tire Co., to the NAM.

Since January, 1943, the Legion "Royal Family" -- as the ruling clique is called -- has been discussing the $20,000,000 fund in secret with Big Business. Hugh O'Connor revealed in the New York Times in May that if other corporations do not contribute their full share of the millions, W. E. Lewis, chairman of the Owens- Illinois Glass Co., promises that his $150,000,000 corporation will "absorb the cost."

The $20,000,000 offer was made to the Legion by R. H. Barnard, vice-president of Owens-Illinois. His firm, along with eight other glass manufacturers, was indicted as a monopoly and violator of the Sherman anti-trust law. He wants to preserve "the American Way of Life," as James F. O'Neill, chairman of the Legion executive committee, put it in announcing the offer. Lewis explained that all the backers of the fund are interested in the future of "Free Enterprise" and "American initiative." All of these impressive phrases were coined by the NAM, whose real and main purpose, according to Congressional investigations, is to fight labor.


It is evident that the Legion will continue to be a reactionary force unless veterans with democratic American views join it and steer it away from its past native-fascist line.

Labor has been slow to take action. But now it is on the march, and it is the present move by labor which can provide the solution of the fascist ideology of the Legion.

A national convention of the American Legion consists of about 1,300 delegates. Of these 1,300, probably not 15 carry union cards, and yet there are tens of thousands of union men in the Legion. If they were in touch with each other, acting and speaking together in the interests of labor and against the reactionary top clique that has generally run the Legion, they could be a great democratizing and liberalizing influence. One post commander, an active union man, told the writer that if 2% of the organized workers of the country were in the Legion and thinking and acting in it like union men, they could control it.

Efforts to unify the trade union membership of the Legion have been made for years. In 1938 an advertisement in a Legion paper asked all labor posts to get in contact with the labor posts in Los Angeles. A few posts did, and a semi-organization was formed. President Green of the A. F. of L. urged the millions of workers who are veterans of the first World War to join the 31 labor posts of the Legion and form new posts for the purpose of fighting the pro-fascists and NAM agents in control of the Legion.

But it was not until June, 1942, that a real conference of trade union posts was held in Chicago. A permanent organization was effected by the 31 posts represented in this National Conference of Union Legionnaires. The conference made its position known in a series of resolutions advocating a Second Front in Europe; approving Vice-President Wallace's Century of the Common Man speech; urging the Legion paper to carry the speech (which it didn't) -- and condemning Westbrook Pegler and asking that his labor-baiting column be dropped from the army paper, Stars and Stripes.

One of the main objectives of the next conference of union Legionnaires will be to get the Legion to appoint a new standing committee, a National Labor Relations Committee. A resolution calling for the appointment of such a committee was passed by two national conventions, but the brass hats in control have ignored this mandate.

The most important fact about the present Legion activity is its move to enroll all it can of America's 10,800,000 men of our war against Fascism into the old Legion. Veterans are generally democratic; they never joined the Legion. They are workers, not corporation heads, and those in the Legion have never been permitted to hold office. The policy of liberal leaders and publications for years has been to attack the Legion. But labor leaders now favor another plan: every eligible veteran and every man now in uniform should join the Legion and throw out the reactionaries who have perverted its program.



Congressional Committee report: "Nazi and Other Propaganda," February 15, 1935. 74th Congress, 1st session; House of Representatives, pp. 9, 10, etc.
The American Legion as Education, by Professor William Gellermann, Columbia University.
King Legion, by Marcus Duffield. Cape and Smith.
The Truth About the American Legion, by Arthur Warner, The Nation, vol. 113.
Senate, Report No. 6, 76th Congress, 1st Session, Violations of Free Speech and the Rights of Labor (La Follette Report), page 151.
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Re: Facts and Fascism, by George Seldes

Postby admin » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:29 am


HENRY FORD's picture for years hung over Hitler's desk in the Brown House in Munich. The Nazis in their early days boasted that they had the moral and financial support of the richest man in America.

The great democratic ambassador William E. Dodd saw the relationship between the big business interests which financed Hitler and the big business interests which financed the Liberty League and other early fascist organizations in America. Dodd had protested the deal whereby the Standard Oil Company of America and I.G. Farben of Nazi Germany became members of the same cartel; Standard advanced millions to I.G.F. for the manufacture of high octane gasoline from coal, and both split the world into sales zones for certain products, one of which was synthetic rubber. (Standard Oil suppressed the use of this patent.) Dodd also knew of the relationship of Henry Ford to Hitlerism. On returning to the United States, after a stormy relationship with the President, Ambassador Dodd said in an interview:

"Fascism is on the march today in America. Millionaires are marching to the tune. It will come in this country unless a strong defense is set up by all liberal and progressive forces. ...

"A clique of U.S. industrialists is hell-bent to bring a fascist state to supplant our democratic government, and is working closely with the fascist regime in Germany and Italy. Aboard ship a prominent executive of one of America's largest financial corporations told me point-blank that if the progressive trend of the Roosevelt administration continued, he would be ready to take definite action to bring Fascism to America.

"Certain American industrialists had a great deal to do with bringing fascist regimes into being in both Germany and Italy. They extended aid to help Fascism occupy the seat of power, and they are helping to keep it there.

"Propagandists for fascist groups try to dismiss the 'fascist scare.' We should be aware of the symptoms. When industrialists ignore laws designed for social and economic progress, they will seek recourse to a fascist state when the institutions of our government compel them to comply with the provisions."

Dr. Dodd did not name Henry Ford as chief of those certain millionaire industrialists who were working for Fascism, but it was not only generally believed at the time, but the Left press declared openly that Dodd was aiming at Ford.

To many persons Ford has always been our No. 1 Fascist. (Newspapermen usually give that spot to William Randolph Hearst, and there is an unending argument as to which of the two has done more harm to the mind of America, but no one doubts that both have spread more fascist poison in this country than any other pair of prominent men.)

"The Kingdom of Henry Ford," wrote Michael Sayers, "is a fascist state within the United States. All the characteristics of Fascism -- Jew-baiting, corruption, gangsterism -- exist today wherever King Henry Ford reigns over American workers. But Fordism and Americanism cannot long continue to exist side by side. Already in more than half a dozen states the National Labor Relations Board has found the Ford Motor Company guilty of maintaining 'a regime of terror and violence directed against its employees.'"

At the hearings in Dallas, Texas, Trial Examiner Robert Denham, who learned of almost unbelievable violence and sadism paid for by Ford, said in his report (April, 1940): "No case within the history of this board is known to the undersigned in which an employer had deliberately called and carried into execution a program of brutal beatings, whippings and other manifestations of physical violence comparable to that shown by the uncontradicted and wholly credible evidence on which the findings are based." Between June and December, 1937, 30 to 50 persons had been beaten up in the streets of Dallas by thugs, racketeers, gunmen and murderers on the payroll of Henry Ford, men hired by Harry Bennett for his service department. "Shocking brutalities" had been reported from every part of America where Ford had a plant and where the unions tried to exercise their constitutional rights to organize the men.

In the case of Ford, as in the case of Hitler, it was violence and bloodshed for profits. It was again the universal pursuit of money.

Strangely enough, the La Follette Committee investigating the terroristic systems of American Big Business -- the use of spies, stoolpigeons, thugs, gangsters, racketeers, gunmen, and murderers and the employment of Thompson machine guns and poison gas -- fails to mention Ford. It goes into detail on Lieut. Gen. William E. Knudsen's, Alfred P. Sloan's and the DuPont brothers' General Motors, for example, but there is no mention of Ford although it is generally known that Ford's Mr. Bennett had one of the biggest spy and thug services in America.

The many volumes of La Follette reports on American industry's hatred of the American workingman and its efforts to keep him down tell these facts:

1. that American business employs a vast espionage system whose purpose is to fight labor;

2. that 200 agencies employ 40,000 to 50,000 spies in industry;

3. that $80,000,000 a year is spent by the big corporations in fighting labor, employing spies, buying gas and guns, hiring gangs;

4. that almost all the great corporations are in the spy racket, including Ford, General Motors, U.S. Steel, Bethlehem Steel, Consolidated Edison, Weir, Frick Coke, etc.

5. that 2,500 companies, comprising what Senator La Follette called "the Blue Book of American Industry," are part of the American Gestapo;

6. that the National Association of Manufacturers, U.S. chamber of Commerce, Merchants and Manufacturers Association, National Metal Trades Association, are the chief organizations engaged in native Fascism.

7. that the American press, which still gives its front page and its approving editorials to the smears, exaggerations and falsehoods of the Dies Committee and similar committees, and which employs reporters to attack labor, and especially those labor unions which are progressive and militant and put up a strong fight for the rights of labor, suppressed almost all the hearings and findings of the La Follette Committee, which constituted an exposure of Fascism in American industry.

Unfortunately, also, our book publishers (who do not live on automobile company advertising, but who are nevertheless afraid of the goodwill or evil notice of newspapers which do), are none too anxious to print books exposing our own brands of Fascism.

A man named Ralph Rimar, who was in Harry Bennett's department for many years, and during the great strike which preceded the C.I.O. unionization, and who was second in command to Norval Marlette, chief of the so-called Intelligence Department of the Ford Empire, and therefore fourth man in the hierarchy from Ford himself, wrote a book which he called Heil Henry! -- The Confessions of a Ford Spy. No publisher would take it. I have read the entire manuscript and have obtained permission from Rimar's agents to quote from it.

The Ford Empire, Rimar shows, is ruled by a triumvirate for its owners, the Ford family. The triumvirs are: Harry Bennett, who bosses 130,000 men in peacetime, more in wartime; Charles Sorensen, an admirer of Hitler's, who bosses production; and W.I. Cameron, who directs public relations and who until recently spoke over the Ford Radio Hour. It was Cameron who published the notorious forgeries called "The Protocols of Zion" in Ford's anti-Semitic publication called the Dearborn Independent, and when Ford in 1927 recanted his anti-Semitism (at least officially) it was Cameron who continued his anti-Semitic activities through the Anglo-Saxon Federation of Detroit and Boston.

Thus we get a picture of Ford, Bennett, Sorensen and Cameron, each representing a different facet of a transplanted European Fascism.

Rimar is not an ordinary person. In his documents, which the present writer has examined, there are letters from Frank Murphy, governor of the Philippine Islands, governor of Michigan and a justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. One of them says:

"I recall very pleasantly the happy hours we spent together in philosophical discussion and exchange of views of man's endless quest for social and economic justice. I trust you are still interested. I am sure you would look upon my current effort (in the Philippines) to break down social inequalities in the Orient approvingly."

Here, then, are extracts from the amazing unpublished manuscript:


"Perhaps in telling my story [Rimar begins] I can undo some of the many wrongs I have helped to accomplish. ...

"It is not a pleasant story. ... It is a tale filled with violence and brutality, with human baseness and deceit, with greed, depravity and ruthlessness. It is a tale of the underworld, a tale describing the inner and furtive workings of the greatest individual industrial empire in the world, the Ford Motor Company.

"International fascist tieups, gangsterism within the plant as well as support of the Fifth Column without; connections between Ford Company officials and vice rings; relationships between Ford henchmen and city, state and government authorities; the use of criminals by the company, the protection of Nazis, the bribery of government witnesses; the torture, mutilation and murder of union men; the efforts to instigate race riots; the constant relentless plotting against tens of thousands of Ford workers."

[This is Rimar's introduction. The manuscript bears out these promises. All the fascist actions and horrors are described in the book.]

"For years I have been one of the key men in the Ford Gestapo. ... Within Ford's domain I soon found there was no liberty, no free speech, no human dignity ... the vast power of Ford extended into courts, schools, prisons, clubs, banks, even in to the national capital, enveloping us all in a black cloud of suppression and fear.

"To those who have never lived under dictatorship it is difficult to convey the sense of fear which is part of the Ford system."

The part of the chapter describing industrial espionage and counter-espionage, every man spying on another, every man suspecting his neighbors, is no different from the spy system in General Motors, Bethlehem Steel and other industrial empires, as described by the La Follette Civil Liberties reports. These corporations, however, never pretended they were paternal, or that they were operated by a humanitarian. They were out to make money at all costs and, until the government took a hand, every legal and illegal means was used. Ford, however, posed as a friend of labor. According to Rimar he was in truth a worse enemy than all other corporation heads. Rimar describes how hatred was encouraged between racial, national and color groups, how Protestants and Catholics were encouraged to hate each other, and to spy on each other and report to superiors; how foreign-born and children of foreign-born were encouraged to keep alive European national hatreds, how Negroes and whites were stirred to enmity, how even high officials were made suspicious of each other. "Between Cameron and Bennett, between Bennett and young Edsel Ford, between Hogan and Deenan, between John Koos and myself there was a constant strife," continues Rimar.

The Bennett system approximated Himmler's.

"Our Gestapo," writes Rimar, "covered Dearborn with a thick web of corruption, intimidation and intrigue. The spy net was all embracing. My own agents reported back to me conversations in grocery stores, meat markets and restaurants, gambling joints, beer gardens, social groups, boys' clubs and even churches. Women waiting in markets buying something might discuss their husbands' jobs and activities; if they did I soon heard what they said. ..."

Bennett, Marlette and Rimar collected all this evidence and acted on it. Men were fired and blacklisted. Rimar confesses: "Prior to 1937 and the rise of the C.I.O. ... I was responsible for the firing of close to 1,500 men. During the year 1940 alone I named over 1,000 union sympathizers and they were all fired." Every man who bought other than a Ford car was fired. Rimar used a Dodge so he could give the impression he was not a Ford employee. But spy evidence to get union sympathizers fired was only part of the anti-labor system. There was also a gangster outfit to break unions. "The service men were professional athletes, former policemen, gangsters, criminals and ex-convicts ... ready at a moment's notice to handle union organizers ... to break up union gatherings ... they were the Storm Troops of Ford." Rimar lists names of men guilty of second degree murder, rape, felonious assault, armed robbery and "indecent liberties." Bennett is a member of the Michigan State Parole Commission, and among the convicts paroled to the Ford Company was Kid McCoy, the wife-murderer, who taught the other members of the goon squads how to use the third degree, how to handle tear gas, pistols and machine-guns. Many persons, Rimar alleges, joined Bennett's Storm Troops in order to escape going to jail because, Rimar says, no law could reach them once they were in Bennett's care. Rimar thus blows up the myth that Henry Ford, great humanitarian, employed a number of convicts to give them a chance to earn an honest living when they went straight. He employed the worst criminals because Bennett needed gangsters to break unions.

In the 1932 Ford hunger march Bennett took motion pictures of the marchers, Rimar discloses. Every worker recognized on these films was fired.

Bennett, for reasons connected with Dearborn politics, ordered Rimar to get a sensational expose of prostitution and gambling in the district. There were 30 disorderly houses, a dozen major gambling joints run by two rival gangs in Dearborn. The most notorious was May Irwin's. Rimar writes that May Irwin told him she paid $800 a month to the police. Rimar turned in a sensational report on the vice situation, naming the police heads who got the money from prostitution and gambling. Rimar says Bennett then told him to shut up because the police heads were Bennett proteges.

Another scandal which he uncovered was the theft of $5,000,000 worth of Ford parts every year by a ring of 90 thieves, some within, some without the plant. Rimar found one man with $100,000 worth of stolen materials, but couldn't get a warrant for his arrest. Rimar writes:

"Relatives of every key man in the Ford plant were involved in this very ring. Whenever we caught these thieves we had to let them go."

In 1935 a ring of thieves was discovered at General Motors. The Detroit News admitted that the police department had given "fences" protection, and demanded an investigation. Among hose indicted was Rimar. He relates that he went to see Judge Scallins, who said it was a strange situation (that a man working against the thieves, but secretly, should be among those indicted) but said that Rimar's innocence would be established. Rimar then got orders from his superiors to say he was not working for Ford, but for Chief of Police Brooks. The attorney, supplied by the Ford Company, told Rimar not to go on the stand to testify. Lies were told in court, but Rimar's lawyer told him not to answer, and he refused to cross examine. The plan was to keep the Ford name out. So Rimar was found guilty. He became angry. He threatened to "blast the whole story in the papers." But Ford officials said, "Who do you think is going to print it?" All the newspapers were subservient to Ford, and Bennett and his service hoodlums boasted they had the press in hand. Rimar kept quiet. A few days later he was probationed as had been promised him by company officials, who also boasted they had the judiciary in hand.

The story of how Father Coughlin worked for Ford and against the labor unions in the Ford plant has been told from many angles. It is now an established fact. Rimar adds his own testimony. He tells how Father Coughlin got orders from Bennett to invite Homer Martin, head of the United Automobile Workers, to dine at the Shrine of the Little Flower. Coughlin began the conversation by deploring the spread of radical influences in the union, suggested that Martin "strike out on his own," become an independent labor union leader who "could do more for the working man than by taking orders from (John L.) Lewis and his red henchmen."

Coughlin suggested unionizing Ford. Martin said, "That's a tough nut to crack." Coughlin replied, "I wouldn't be too sure. I know Mr. Bennett personally ... a man with vision. ... I am sure he could be made to realize the advantages of a union with honest intentions and no red influences, a union with a fine and dependable leader like yourself organizing his plant."

Coughlin arranged a conference between Martin and Bennett. Bennett said he wanted a "reliable" union in the plant. Rimar continues:

"Bennett played his cards carefully. Early in 1938 Martin was already taking cash from him. ... Bennett simply suggested he be allowed to help out -- for the good of 'honest unionism.' The money advanced could be considered as a loan."

Homer Martin was flattered into betraying the union. Between Coughlin and Bennett the attempt was made to organize a Ford company union under Martin which would divide labor and prevent either the C.I.O. or A. F. of L. from coming in.

Henry Ford, who believes he is a benefactor of mankind, and who is considered now the worst anti-Semite, hate-spreader, and labor-baiter in America, employed men who employed other men who on orders from Ford Company officials committed all sorts of violence including murder. All to keep wages low, unions out of the plants, and more money going into the Ford Empire.

Rimar writes that Bennett employed a gangster by the name of Elder to beat up three union men for $250; he also describes the beating of Attorney W.A. Houston of Dallas. The labor lawyer was almost killed but not one Dallas newspaper reported the incident. "That," continues Rimar, "gives you some idea of the influence Ford exerts over the press in those cities where the company operates." The Dallas gangsters employed by the Ford Company are named and pictured. The Dallas gang murdered Archie Lewis, mistaking him for his twin brother, a labor union man.

When the great strike began, Rimar writes:

"Bennett was not caught completely napping ... (he) was quoted in headlines throughout the city's press that the strike was a 'gigantic communist plot threatening national defense.' All of us went to work on the strike as red, The Little Fellow (Bennett) had said, 'Discredit it and it will be easy to break. Smear it. Say it is communist-inspired.' We spread the word far and wide. We had excellent support from Detroit papers. They always back up Ford 100% and in this case they outdid themselves. We plugged the red theme on the radio as well. The Rev. Gerald L.K. Smith and Rev. Frank Norris were ready for the job. In their broadcast they said the Bolsheviks were trying to take over. Norris, the same preacher who was once tried in Texas for shooting a man, gave a long sermon in which he described the strike as a 'revolution.' The Detroit Times printed the sermon in full, frontpaging it."

Rimar tells the inside story of the strike. There was a raid on Detroit Communist headquarters where police picked up a map of the Ford plant. Rimar alleges that Norval Marlette, his superior, admitted this was the official map handed every tourist at Ford's plant. Nevertheless, "not only the newspapers in Detroit, but the press throughout the country as well, carried the stories of the raid on Communist headquarters, the 'discovery of the map.' ... We were getting clippings from every state. We knew they must be influencing public opinion. The strategy seemed to be working well." The map, of course, was linked to a charge of plots, revolution, dynamite.

"But the red scare was by no means our only tactic to break the strike. We used that to discredit it. We had other methods for demoralizing the workers." One way was to pass around Detroit newspapers which were shouting all over the front page that the men could never win the strike because "public opinion" -- which is something the newspapers boast they manufacture and control -- was against them. The press, which lives largely on Ford ads, said public opinion favored Ford. Ford men started the rumor that the governor would ask Roosevelt to send in the U.S. Army to break the strike. "The Detroit Times, Hearst paper, was the first to carry the headline: 'CAMP CUSTER SOLDIERS MAY GO TO FORD'S.' That headline appeared in six editions of the Detroit Times. Then newspapers throughout the country carried similar leads to their Ford stories.

"Naturally, we promoted a 'back to work' movement. ..." This is part of the Mohawk Valley strikebreaking formula, sponsored by the NAM.

"We did everything we could to provoke trouble at the plant, especially in the picket line. We knew that if there were enough disturbances, perhaps even a few riots, public sentiment against the strike would rise.

"Inside the plant we had our gang of strikebreakers. We saw to it that they were well provided with liquor. Almost all of them had weapons."

Rimar describes violence organized by Ford officials and started by strikebreakers while other officials issued "public demands" for troops to stop these same violences. Rimar tells how Bennett's men hired hundreds of Negroes and inflamed them against white workers. Rimar charged that Donald T. Marshall, Negro assistant to Harry Bennett and Homer Martin, is responsible for this spread of race hatred. Bennett men also distributed a circular saying "Henry Ford is the next man to Abe Lincoln in helping the colored race. ... Henry Ford has done more for our race than the union." At the same time Ford men were stirring up the freshly hired Negroes against the white men on strike.

Rimar also charges Ford service men with spreading anti-Semitism.

"We told the Negroes the Jews were leading the union. ... We tried to divide the men, not only White against Black, but also Jew against Gentile.

"Bennett was counting heavily on the tactic of pitting the Negroes against the Whites. We all knew that, if he thought it necessary, he was willing to provoke race riots. As a matter of fact he was already laying the groundwork for such riots. He knew that once the workers started killing one another, once they split into armies of Black and White, he would have the strike licked. But even here I felt that he was underestimating the strength of the union. The U.A.W. had already won over thousands of Ford Negro workers and they were marching in the picket line. ... Prominent Negroes in Detroit and throughout the country were issuing public statements giving their support to the strike.

"For years his (Bennett's) system had worked out. The Homer Martins had come across. He had believed that all union men could be bought in the same way. ...'I can buy them for a dime a dozen,' he would say; 'Hell, they've all got their price.' He felt the same way about the rank and file in the plant. 'I can pay half of them to kill the other half,' he used to tell us. ... After the men marched back to work (Bennett said) 'they think they've won but the fight's just beginning.'"

When Rimar wrote six articles, "I Was a Ford Spy," Bennett did everything to discredit his former associate. He arranged that the Detroit newspapers, notorious for their venality, feature the story of Rimar's framed arrest years earlier. The newspaper reporters knew that the reason Rimar had been found guilty and immediately pardoned was because a deal had been made between the Ford Co., the police, and the courts of justice, to have this happen so that the Ford name would not be dragged through the mud. But the newspaper proprietors chose to forget that fact. Rimar says the Detroit News, the Detroit Free Press and the Detroit Times all joined in Bennett's smear campaign, revived the old story, heaped new mud on him, tried to white wash the Ford Empire.

Rimar ends his book with this line:

"Fordism is American Fascism."


Like Hitler-Germany and Mussolini-Italy, Ford himself has been able to earn a profit on his Fascism. The swastika decoration which Hitler sent him was only a symbol of the aid he had given the Nazis. The Ford factory in Cologne, operated with the aid of the Nazi authorities, who kept the workmen in line -- on low wages -- also paid dividends. But the big money Ford made was by employing violence and terrorism (fascist tactics) to keep labor from organizing. When finally the C.I.O. swept the Ford empire it was estimated that Harry Bennett, known as Ford's personnel director but actually his lieutenant of private militia, had saved Ford no less than $140,000,000 in the three years they had defied the National Labor Board.

If the fascist dictators resort to lies, so does Ford. One of the great Ford lies actually created the myth that Ford paid higher wages than anyone in America. The United Autoworkers, in their 1940 campaign, opened the eyes of many Americans when they printed tables showing that Chrysler and Briggs (General Motors) paid higher wages in every category, from arc welder to water sander. Ford wages ranged from 75c to 95c an hour minimums, the rivals from 98c to $1.38 for the same work, and in many cases the Ford maximum wage was below the union minimum.

The first union contract which Ford was forced to sign brought an immediate gain of $30,000,000 a year to his 130,000 employees. Even with the family worth more than $2,000,000,000 -- the T.N.E.C. report listed its stock ownership alone at $624,975,000 -- a matter of thirty millions is something.

Ford has never been known for any charities, nor has he been known to contribute any considerable sum to anyone, but one of the few outfits which got something from Henry and Mrs. Ford is the Moral Rearmament Movement, better known as Buchmanism. Dr. Frank Buchman is a notorious Fascist, who had endorsed Hitler many years ago, and who made an excellent living getting money from big businessmen to preach a "philosophy" of appeasement to labor. Everyone was to cooperate, there were to be no strikes, the lion and lamb were to lie down together, and if the labor-lamb frequently was inside the belly of the capitalist lion, it could only result in more contributions to Buchmanism. Leading Buchmanites: Himmler, the chief murderer of Nazidom -- this is attested by Fritz Thyssen in his book I Paid Hitler; Rudolf Hess, the No. 3 Nazi who made the flight from Germany to the estate of the Duke of Hamilton -- another Buchmanite -- with Hitler's proposals for a patched up peace between Germany and Britain and a united war against Russia; David Dubinsky, a labor leader well known and liked by employers; Harry Chandler, the notorious reactionary publisher of the Los Angeles Times, most bitter anti-labor paper in the nation; Louis B. Mayer, the notorious movie producer who faked movies in order to smear Upton Sinclair in the California gubernatorial election; and assorted native and foreign Fascisti, all enemies of labor and the general welfare.


It was general knowledge in the early 1920's, when it was not treason to aid Hitler, that Henry Ford was one of his spiritual and economic backers. Ford was for Hitler because both were anti-Semites, whereas Fritz Thyssen, who later took over the financing of Naziism, was not an anti-Semite and was not attracted to Hitlerism until he realized that the crackpot could be made into a tool of Big Business.

The most credible evidence regarding Ford's financing of early Naziism was given in the treason trial of Herr Hitler himself. On November 8, 1923, Hitler had made the now famous Munich Beer Hall Putsch -- he rushed into the Buergerbrau cafe, leaped on a table, screamed, and when people began to laugh, fired three revolver shots into the ceiling and announced the Nazi revolution. On February 7, 1924, Herr Auer, vice-president of the Bavarian Diet, testified in the Hitler trial as follows:

"The Bavarian Diet has long had the information that the Hitler movement was partly financed by an American anti-Semitic chief, who is Henry Ford. Mr. Ford's interest in the Bavarian anti- Semitic movement began a year ago when one of Mr. Ford's agents, seeking to sell tractors, came in contact with Diedrich Eichart [Note: Eckart is correct in the notorious Pan-German. Shortly after, Herr Eichart asked Mr. Ford's agent for financial aid. The agent returned to America and immediately Mr. Ford's money began coming to Munich.

"Herr Hitler openly boasts of Mr. Ford's support and praises Mr. Ford as a great individualist and a great anti-Semite. A photograph of Mr. Ford hangs in Herr Hitler's quarters, which is the center of the monarchist movement."

Shortly after Herr Auer made this accusation, Mr. Ford's European agent, W.C. Anderson, resigned, and the Ford company experienced great difficulties in doing business in the German Republic.

There was nothing illegal about subsidizing Hitler -- that is, until Pearl Harbor, when such an action would be treason, punishable by death. From 1922 on it was frequently reported in the press and it was common knowledge that Ford was subsidizing Hitler, and Ford never denied it.

The Manchester Guardian, leading liberal newspaper of the world, reported that Hitler received "more than moral support" from two American millionaires. In his biography of Hitler, Konrad Heiden says:

"That Henry Ford, the famous automobile manufacturer, gave money to the National Socialists directly or indirectly has never been disputed."

The Berliner Tageblatt made an appeal to the American ambassador to investigate the report that Henry Ford was financing Hitler, the New York Times Berlin correspondent cabled (Times, December 20, 1922, p. 2, col. 3). The correspondent added that Hitler had money to spend -- and this was in the midst of the inflation when marks were becoming worthless. The Times continued:

"The wall beside his desk in Hitler's private office is decorated with a large picture of Henry Ford. In the antechamber there is a large table covered with books nearly all of which are a translation f a book written and published by Henry Ford. [These are anti Semitic books] In Nationalist circles in Berlin too, one often hears of Ford's name mentioned by people who would seem the very last in the world with whom an American respecting the Republican Constitution would seek any association.

"The New York Times correspondent is in a position to say that certain circles who make Hohenzollern propaganda their business addressed Henry Ford, whose name was given to them as being that of a man likely to respond favorably -- for financial aid. ... Mr. Ford has not invested in the monarchist propaganda. Indeed he has made that quite clear to those who long for Wilhelm's return. And this fact may be responsible for the pains Hitler takes at every occasion to state that he is not supporting a monarchist movement."

Early in 1923, seven months before the Beer Hall Putsch, Raymond Fendrick, an honest and reliable foreign correspondent (despite the fact he was employed by the Chicago Tribune Foreign News Service, an organization which included professional falsifiers such as Donald Day who is now in the Finnish army), had an interview with an almost unheard of man who had been referred to once or twice as "Otto" Hitler.

"We look on Heinrich Ford as the leader of the growing Fascisti movement in America," Adolf told the journalist; "we admire particularly the anti-Jewish policy which is the Bavarian Fascisti platform. We have just had his anti-Jewish articles translated and published. [It] is being circulated to millions throughout Germany."

If Ford were to deny that he ever sent money to Hitler it would not at all alter the charge that Ford's writings and anti-Semitic views were a great force in the Hitler movement in Germany.

In his book, I Knew Hitler, published here in 1938, the Nazi agent Kurt K.W. Luedecke tells of his first trip to America in 1924 for the purpose of obtaining funds from Henry Ford. He insists that he was sent on direct orders from Hitler. Luedecke got along well with Ford's editor. He writes:

"During my visit to America I found time for several talks with the editor of the Dearborn Independent. That publication has now embarked on an anti-Jewish campaign, with William J. Cameron writing most of its articles. ... Cameron, a capable journalist who successfully phrases Henry Ford's inarticulate racial uneasiness, was receptive when I went to see him. He appeared eager for outside assistance."

[For many years after Ford admitted that the Protocols of Zion and other material he published in his Dearborn Independent were forgeries, his editor, Cameron, continued to reprint them in Destiny, publication of his Anglo-Saxon Federation.]

The Ford Empire is the biggest industrial undertaking in America owned by one family. Edsel Ford was said to be a man with no political leanings and no social conscience. But both Mrs. and Mr. Henry Ford are true Fascists. It was Mrs. Ford who first came under the influence of anti-Semitic preachers and who was favorable to the Tsarist terrorist agent Boris Brasol, who brought the first forgeries known as "The Protocols of Zion" to America. Henry Ford, who at the libel suit against the Chicago Tribune proved himself a complete ignoramus on history, philosophy, economics, literature, and everything else except auto engines, has the typical hoodlum mind of the Fascist. Another is Pegler. Still another is Lindbergh. Both Ford and his wife endorsed Buchmanism, which is a highclass form of Fascism, subsidized by big businessmen for the purpose of propagandizing working men into subservience. Ford, however, proves himself the real Fascist in his employment of the Bennett system of violence (including murder) as a means of maintaining business interests. The Ford Empire is the Hitler Nazi empire on a small scale.



Dodd interview: Federated Press, January 7, 1938.
The Tragedy at Henry Ford, by Jonathan Norton Leonard.
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