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The Hidden History Of Bayer: IG Farben, Wall Street, Nazi Germany

See where the lines of Big Agri, Big Pharma, and financial oligarchy intersect.

(Era of Wisdom) James Corbett of The Corbett Report takes a moment to note some of the dark legacy of Bayer that the German chemical and pharmaceutical giant would prefer you didn’t know.

See where the lines of Big Agri, Big Pharma, and financial oligarchy intersect.

“Thanks, Bayer – for being the harbinger of Death.”

Show Notes

At its peak in the 1930s, the German chemical conglomerate IG Farben was one of the most powerful corporations in the world. To this day, companies formerly part of the Farben cartel―the aspirin maker Bayer, the graphics supplier Agfa, the plastics giant BASF―continue to play key roles in the global market. IG Farben itself, however, is remembered mostly for its infamous connections to the Nazi Party and its complicity in the atrocities of the Holocaust. After the war, Farben’s leaders were tried for crimes that included mass murder and exploitation of slave labor.

In Hell’s Cartel, Diarmuid Jeffreys presents the first comprehensive account of IG Farben’s rise and fall, tracing the enterprise from its nineteenth-century origins, when the discovery of synthetic dyes gave rise to a vibrant new industry, through the upheavals of the Great War era, and on to the company’s fateful role in World War II. Named one of the best books of the year by Business Week, Hell’s Cartel sheds new light on the codependence of industry and the Third Reich, and offers a timely warning against the dangerous merger of politics and the pursuit of profit.


“Sutton comes to conclusions that are uncomfortable for many businessmen and economists. For this reason, his work tends to be either dismissed out of hand as ‘extreme’ or, more often, simply ignored.” ―Richard Pipes, Baird Professor Emeritus of History, Harvard University (from Survival Is Not Enough: Soviet Realities and America’s Future)

Why did the 1917 American Red Cross Mission to Russia include more financiers than medical doctors? Rather than caring for the victims of war and revolution, its members seemed more intent on negotiating contracts with the Kerensky government and, subsequently, the Bolshevik regime.

In a courageous investigation, Antony Sutton establishes tangible historical links between Russian communists and US capitalists. Drawing on US state department files, personal papers of key Wall Street figures, biographies, and conventional histories, Sutton reveals:

  • The role of Morgan banking executives in funneling illegal Bolshevik gold into the US.
  • The co-option of the American Red Cross by powerful Wall Street forces.
  • The intervention by Wall Street sources to free the Marxist revolutionary Leon Trotsky, whose aim was to topple the Russian government.
  • The deals made by major corporations to capture the huge Russian market a decade and a half before the US recognized the Soviet regime.
  • The secret sponsoring of Communism by leading businessmen, who publicly championed free enterprise.

Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution traces the foundations of Western funding of the Soviet Union. Dispassionately, and with overwhelming documentation, the author details a crucial phase in the establishment of Communist Russia.

This classic study―first published in 1974 and part of a key trilogy―is reproduced here in its original form. The other volumes in this trilogy are Wall Street and the Rise of Hitler and Wall Street and FDR.


This is the third and final volume of a trilogy describing the role of the American corporate socialists, otherwise known as the Wall Street financial elite or the Eastern Liberal Establishment, in three significant twentieth-century historical events: the 1917 Lenin-Trotsky Revolution in Russia, the 1933 election of Franklin D. Roosevelt in the United States, and the 1933 seizure of power by Adolf Hitler in Germany.

Each of these events introduced some variant of socialism into a major country — i.e., Bolshevik socialism in Russia, New Deal socialism in the United States, and National socialism in Germany.

Contemporary academic histories, with perhaps the sole exception of Carroll Quigley’s Tragedy And Hope, ignore this evidence. On the other hand, it is understandable that universities and research organizations, dependent on financial aid from foundations that are controlled by this same New York financial elite, would hardly want to support and to publish research on these aspects of international politics. The bravest of trustees is unlikely to bite the hand that feeds his organization.

It is also eminently clear from the evidence in this trilogy that “public-spirited businessmen” do not journey to Washington as lobbyists and administrators in order to serve the United States. They are in Washington to serve their own profit-maximizing interests. Their purpose is not to further a competitive, free-market economy, but to manipulate a politicized regime, call it what you will, to their own advantage.

It is business manipulation of Hitler’s accession to power in March 1933 that is the topic of Wall Street and the Rise of Hitler.