Part 2: The role of Royal Dutch Shell as a collaborator and financier of the Third Reich.
By John Donovan
Any major company in existence for over 100 years is bound to have skeletons in the closet. In the case of Royal Dutch Shell, it is arguably over 30 million deaths(1) arising from the oil giants funding of the Nazi party prior to the advent of the 2nd World War. The horrific fatalities includes over 5.7 millions Jewish Holocaust deaths. Royal Dutch Shell Group funds injected by its Director General and founder, Sir Henri Deterding, saved the Nazi Party from collapse.
Declassified US intelligence records show Royal Dutch Shell was viewed as a Nazi collaborator that used Hitlers slave laborers.(2)
Deterding won his knighthood(3) in 1920(4) for Shell’s help to the British Admiralty, ingeniously fooling German submarines in WW1 by transporting oil not in tankers, but as ballast instead of water in ordinary ships.
A ruthless thirst for access to new oil fields was a driving force by Sir Henri (right) for his support for the most evil man in history. Sir Henri, at the helm of the oil giant for over 30 years, was himself described at one time as The Most Powerful Man in the World – the title of a book by his biographer Glyn Roberts. Deterding was able, at the height of his powers, to bind the Board of Shell without their knowledge and consent.(9) Deterding was also known as “The Napoleon of Oil”(10). Deterding and Royal Dutch Shell were one and the same. Deterding has also been described as a “despot.”(11)
A Time Magazine article(12) about the launch of the Glyn Roberts book said:“Roberts thinks his backing for Hitler and his admiration for Mussolini are based on his hatred of communism…”
Deterding admired dictators and acted like one himself.
“Deterding clearly liked the New Order represented by the Nazis. He considered the notorious Night of the Long Knives in June 1934, when Hitler had a large number of his suspected party opponents brutally murdered, as a necessary step, confessing that it had increased his respect and veneration for the Nazi leader, if such were possible.” (13)
Shell has itself recognized the potential danger of having a dominant leader. The following is an extract from an article published by Fortune magazine on 4 August, 1997 reporting on some “New Age” self-analysis therapy at Shell:
What kind of company chooses a Herkstroter? One with a long history in Europe, where men with too much power have caused world wars. Shell executives say that archive films showing the birthday celebrations of Henri Deterding, Shells last strong, single master, are eerily reminiscent of Hitlers rallies. Indeed, Deterding harbored Nazi sympathies; had he not retired from Shell in 1936, the companys subsequent history might have been different. “We in Europe have always had a fear of the strong man,” says Shell managing director van den Bergh.(14)
“Sir Henri was a short, stocky man with an ambitious, energetic, and effervescent personality. His rather large head seemed closely set on his body. Despite a headful of white hair and a bristly, trimmed white mustache, he seemed younger due to his ruddy complexion and black flashing eyes.”(15)
Deterding had a gift for “financial manipulations”.(16) He was also a “consummate schemer.”(17)
Deterding was an honored friend and supporter of Hitler and a personal friend of Field Marshall Göring. They lived near each other in Germany and went shooting together. Deterding had also met Alfred Rosenberg, the chief Nazi ideologue and leader of the party department for foreign affairs. In September 1935, the German Foreign Office seconded one of its staff to Deterding as a personal assistant for political matters.(18)
Because of the volume of evidence we have assembled, Shell’s close association with the Nazis is out in the open, and will be accessible on the Internet for all time, rather than confined to archive articles and out-of-print books, where Shell no doubt hoped the information would remain fragmented and buried. The stigma will now forever rightly be attached to Royal Dutch Shell.
Unsurprisingly, there is no reference in the “The early 20th century”(19) feature within the “Our history” section of Shell’s website(20) to Shell’s financing of the Nazis, the close relationship between Shell’s supreme leader and the leaders of the Nazis, nor of Shell’s collaboration with the Nazi, including the instigation of anti-Semitic policies against Shell’s employees in Germany.
Instead it prefers to airbrush out of its online history the Nazi infatuation of Sir Henri Deterding who was described by the U.S. Embassy in Berlin as “among the most notorious pro-Nazis of the early war period”.(21)
1. From Wikipedia article “World War ll casualties”
2. Information from Boston Globe article: “CLOAKED BUSINESS” published on 19 November 2001
3. Time Magazine article: “PETROLEUM: Royal Dutch Knight” published 13 February 1939
4. Time Magazine article: “GERMANY: Petticoat Philanthropy?” published 11 January 1937
5. Wikipedia article “Adolf Hitler”
6. Information from page 369 “The Prize” by Daniel Yergin published 1992 by FREE PRESS ISBN 0-671-79932-0
7. Information from The Sunday Times article: “A very British kind of scandal: why Shell is no Enron” published 23 April 2004
9. Information from page 369 “The Prize” by Daniel Yergin published 1992 by FREE PRESS ISBN 0-671-79932-0
10. From Wikipedia article “Henri Deterding”
11. Information from The Sunday Times article: “A very British kind of scandal: why Shell is no Enron” published 23 April 2004
12. Time Magazine article: “Books: Ruddy Old Gent” published 27 June 1938
13. Extract from pages 477/478 A History of Royal Dutch Shell Vol 1: From Challenger to Joint Industry Leader 1890 -1939 by Joost Jonker & Luiten van Zanden published in the UK in 2007 by Oxford University Press.
14. From Fortune Magazine article: “WHY IS THE WORLD’S MOST PROFITABLE COMPANY TURNING ITSELF INSIDE OUT? ROYAL DUTCH/SHELL LOOKED AT THE FUTURE AND DIDN’T LIKE THE VIEW. NOW IT IS CHANGING EVERYTHING FROM THE WAY ITS MANAGERS ACT TO THE WAY IT DOES BUSINESS” published 4 August 1997
15. From page 320 from the book “WHO FINANCED HITLER” by James E. Pool III and Suzanne Pool: Macdonald and Janes Publishers Limited: ISBN 0 354 04395 1
16. From page 475 “A History of Royal Dutch Shell VOL 1: From Challenger to Joint Industry Leader 1890 -1939 by Joost Jonker & Luiten van Zanden published in the UK in 2007 by Oxford University Press.
17. From page 476 “A HISTORY OF Royal Dutch Shell” VOL 1: From Challenger to Joint Industry Leader 1890 -1939 by Joost Jonker & Luiten van Zanden published in the UK in 2007 by Oxford University Press.
18. From page 478 “A HISTORY OF RDS VOL 1: From Challenger to Joint Industry Leader 1890 -1939 by Joost Jonker & Luiten van Zanden published in the UK in 2007 by Oxford University Press.
19. Screen shot of “The early 20th century” feature on Shell’s website – shell.com – taken on 15 Sept 2010
20. Reference to the best known Royal Dutch Shell website: shell.com
21. Information from Hell’s Cartel: IG Farben and the Making of Hitler’s War Machineby Diarmuid Jeffreys published in 2008 by Metropolitan Books Henry Holt and Company, LLC. Extract from cited references listed on page 61 of “6. Confidential memorandum from U.S. embassy, Berlin, op. cit., chapter 2. Sir Henri Deterding was among the most notorious pro-Nazis of the early war period”
LINKS TO OTHER PARTS OF ROYAL DUTCH SHELL NAZI SECRETS
Royal Dutch Shell Nazi Secrets: Authors relationship with Shell (Alfred Donovan and John Donovan)
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