Comeuppance for Bayer

Vernon Coleman

German chemicals group Bayer is in trouble. Since Bayer bought Monsanto (my long-term pick as the world’s most evil company) its share price has fallen by over a third. Bayer is on the hook for the cost of legal actions relating to the Roundup herbicide – one of Monsanto’s most profitable products.

You shouldn’t feel sorry for Bayer.

Here’s a little history you might not know.

In 1925 a group of important German companies (Agfa, Bayer, BASF, Hoechst and other German companies) formed a cartel called IG Farben. Their aim was to obtain control of global markets in key industrial sectors – specifically: chemicals, pharmaceuticals and petrochemicals. History shows quite clearly that it was the formation of this cartel, and the creation of IG Farben, which led directly to the Second World War (and all its associated atrocities) and the European Union.

It was in 1933 that IG Farben began to finance the rising German politician called Adolf Hitler, and his National Socialist German Workers’ Party (already known as the Nazi Party). The directors of IG Farben believed that the Nazis would help them in their goal of controlling markets world-wide. It was one of Hitler’s associates, Walther Funk, (who was later the designer of the European Union and the euro) who persuaded the industrialists to finance the Nazis.

The relationship between IG Farben and the Nazis was symbiotic.

IG Farben gave millions of reichsmarks to the Nazis and in return the Nazis gave the company control over industries in the countries which the Germans occupied. The aim was to create a massive European Market for IG Farben’s products. Later, the Nazis also helped IG Farben by providing cheap labour through its concentration camps. (One of the concentration camps at Auschwitz was built by IG Farben. The company also made the poison gas used to kill inmates.)

IG Farben’s need for cheap labour was so great that the company had built a huge factory at Auchswitz where there was a huge reservoir of slave labour. Bayer, the company’s pharmaceutical division, tested its drugs on prisoners. IG Farben also made huge amounts of money by providing the gas for the killing of prisoners in concentration camps throughout Germany.

After the war, IG Farben was broken up into its constituent parts.

The new companies denied any responsibilities for the actions of IG Farben on the basis that they were new and had not existed during the war. This disgraceful self-serving legal move was accepted without a murmur of protest.

Bayer, which had been a part of IG Farben, had used concentration camp victims for its experiments and for testing new drugs but the company was allowed to keep all the profits from these experiments.

The amazing truth is that the directors of IG Farben, the conglomerate which funded Hitler, ran a camp at Auschwitz and produced the gas used in the gas chambers, were allowed to play a vital part in founding the European Union in precisely the way that Walther Funk had proposed in 1940 and onwards.

By the mid-1960s, Bayer and BASF, two of the companies which were formed when IG Farben was broken up, had become ever richer and more powerful.

And there seemed to be no shame about the past. Bayer actually set up a foundation to honour a Nazi called Fritz ter Meer on his 80th birthday and started the foundation off with a donation of two million deutschmarks. (It was not until 20 years later that Bayer changed the name of the foundation.)

It did not seem to bother anyone that Herr ter Meer had overseen the building of IG Auschwitz and had handled criminal negotiations with Standard Oil. He had been found guilty of war crimes (including genocide) and sentenced to seven years imprisonment in 1948. Naturally, he did not serve the full sentence. Fritz ter Meer, one of the most evil Nazis, was released in 1950 and immediately re-joined the board of Bayer.

So you can see why I’m not shedding any tears at the news that Bayer is now in a little trouble.

The company should have been wound up at the end of World War II.

Copyright Vernon Coleman May 2019

The material about Bayer is taken from The Shocking History of the EU by Zina Cohen. Zina Cohen’s book also contains the names and biographies of the 40 founding fathers of the EU.