While the Enron scandal currently unfolds, another Bush family business scandal lurks beneath the shadows of history that may dwarf it.
On April 19, 2001, President George W. Bush spent some of Holocaust Remembrance Day in the Capital Rotunda with holocaust survivors, allied veterans, and their families. In a ceremony that included Jewish prayers and songs sung by holocaust victims in the camps, Benjamin Meed, a survivor of the Warsaw ghetto uprising, movingly described to the gathering what he experienced on April 19, 1943.
"I stood outside a Catholic church, which faced the ghetto," Mr. Meed said, "a young Jewish boy posing as a gentile. As I watched the ghetto being bombarded by the German artillery, I could see many of the Jews of my community jumping out of windows of burning buildings. I stood long and mute."
The survivor concluded his reminiscence saying, "We tremble to think what could happen if we allow a new generation to arise ignorant of the tragedy which is still shaping the future."
President Bush, appearing almost uncomfortable, read a statement that said that humanity was "bound by conscience to remember what happened" and that "the record has been kept and preserved." The record, Mr. Bush stated, was that one of the worst acts of genocide in human history "came not from crude and uneducated men, but from men who regarded themselves as cultured and well schooled, modern men, forward looking. Their crime showed the world that evil can slip in and blend in amid the most civilized surroundings. In the end only conscience can stop it."
But while President Bush publicly embraced the community of holocaust survivors in Washington last spring, he and his family have been keeping a secret from them for over 50 years about Prescott Bush, the president's grandfather. According to classified documents from Dutch intelligence and US government archives, President George W. Bush's grandfather, Prescott Bush made considerable profits off Auschwitz slave labor. In fact, President Bush himself is an heir to these profits from the holocaust which were placed in a blind trust in 1980 by his father, former president George Herbert Walker Bush.
Throughout the Bush family's decades of public life, the American press has gone out of its way to overlook one historical fact – that through Union Banking Corporation (UBC), Prescott Bush, and his father-in-law, George Herbert Walker, along with German industrialist Fritz Thyssen, financed Adolf Hitler before and during World War II. It was first reported in 1994 by John Loftus and Mark Aarons in The Secret War Against the Jews: How Western Espionage Betrayed the Jewish People.
The US government had known that many American companies were aiding Hitler, like Standard Oil, General Motors and Chase Bank, all of which was sanctioned after Pearl Harbor. But as The New York Times reporter Charles Higham later discovered, and published in his 1983 groundbreaking book, Trading With The Enemy; The Nazi American Money Plot 1933-1949, "the government smothered everything during and even after the war." Why?
According to Higham, the US government believed "a public scandal ... would have drastically affected public morale, caused widespread strikes and perhaps provoked mutinies in the armed services." Higham claims the government thought "their trial and imprisonment would have made it impossible for the corporate boards to help the American war effort."
However, Prescott Bush's banks were not just financing Hitler as previously reported. In fact, there was a distinct business link much deeper than Mr. Higham or Mr. Loftus knew at the time their books were published.
A classified Dutch intelligence file which was leaked by a courageous Dutch intelligence officer, along with newly surfaced information from U.S. government archives, "confirms absolutely," John Loftus says, the direct links between Bush, Thyssen and genocide profits from Auschwitz.
The business connections between Prescott Bush and Fritz Thyssen were more direct than what has been previously written. This new information reveals how Prescott Bush and UBC, which he managed directly, profited from the Holocaust. A case can be made that the inheritors of the Prescott Bush estate could be sued by survivors of the Holocaust and slave labor communities. To understand the complete picture of how Prescott Bush profited from the Holocaust, it is necessary to return to the year 1916, where it all began.
Post World War I: Thyssen Empire On The Ropes
By 1916, August Thyssen could see the writing on the wall. The "Great War" was spinning out of control, grinding away at Germany's resources and economy. The government was broke and his company, Thyssen & Co., with 50,000 German workers and annual production of 1,000,000 tons of steel and iron, was buckling under the war's pressure. As the main supplier of the German military, August Thyssen knew Germany would be defeated once the US entered the war.
At 74, "King" August Thyssen knew he was also running out of time. His first born "prince" Friedrich (Fritz) Thyssen, had been groomed at the finest technical business schools in Europe and was destined to inherit his father's estimated $100,000,000 fortune and an industrial empire located at Muehhlheim on the Ruhr.
In addition to Fritz, plans were also made for the second son Heinrich. At the outbreak of the war, Heinrich Thyssen discreetly changed his citizenship from German to Hungarian and married the Hungarian aristocrat Baroness Margrit Bornemisza de Kaszon. Soon Heinrich Thyssen switched his name to Baron Thyssen Bornemisza de Kaszon.
Near the end of World War I, August Thyssen opened the Bank voor Handel
en Scheepvaart in Rotterdam. The neutral Holland was the perfect location
outside of Germany to launder assets from the August Thyssen Bank in
Berlin when the financial demands of the Allied forces surfaced. But the
war ended much sooner than even Thyssen calculated and what developed
caught the "Rockefeller of the Ruhr" off guard.
After the war, chaos descended on Germany as food ran short. Winter was looming over a starving nation when on Dec. 7, 1918, the socialist Spartacists League came knocking on the Thyssen Villa with armed militia. August and Fritz were arrested and dragged from jail to jail across Germany for four days. Along the way, they were lined up in staged executions designed to terrorize them.
It worked. When released, the two Thyssens were horrified at the new political climate in their beloved Germany. They could not accept that Germany was responsible for its own demise. All Germany's problems, the Thyssens felt, "have almost always been due to foreigners." It was the Jews, he and many others believed, who were secretly behind the socialist movement across the globe.
Meanwhile Fritz's younger brother Baron Thyssen Bornemisza de Kaszon moved to Rotterdam and became the principal owner of the Bank voor Handel en Scheepvaart. All the Thyssens needed now was an American branch.