Somehow, the British got wind of this meeting (before it actually happened) and predictably did not like it one bit. So on the night of the meeting – for the first time since the beginning of the war – the RAF bombed the shit (pardon my French) out of the city – specifically targeting the Maison Rouge Hotel. However, by the time of the bombing, the meeting was long over and its attendees were long gone.
The contents of the Red House Report meant that, for all practical purposes, in late summer of 1944 (if not earlier), the SS began to methodically (Himmler-style) strip away the wealth of the Third Reich.
By the orders of Heinrich Himmler (in many ways the real dictator of Germany at the time) the still formidable resources of Nazi Germany were gradually being moved abroad, where they could be used to form the industrial and financial basis for the establishment of a new Nazi state – the Fourth Reich (the SS-Staat).
Himmler wanted nothing less than total control of Germany’s financial future, to be dictated by the SS (ODESSA or Die Neue SS, to be more precise) under his iron rule.
Actually, by that time he already controlled it – or at least the most profitable ones (possibly practically all profitable ones). Hence after his “Red House Project” was completed, the Third Reich would have gone almost (if not totally) bankrupt.
By the time of the first Maison Rouge meeting on 10 August, arrangements had already been completed for most other major industrial firms in Nazi Germany to covertly transfer their assets abroad (this creating a firm financial foundation for the Fourth Reich).
But money by itself was not enough. To be able to resurrect the Nazi Germany (i.e. facilitate the advent of the Fourth Reich), he need an organization. An infrastructure. A control and management system.
And, of course, the managers (investment bankers know that there are only three key success factor for every business – management, management and management).
Which means that the managers must be properly trained. So Himmler set up two SS research & training institutes. The first, Gruppe VI wi, studied world economics under Amt VI (foreign intelligence service of the SS) in a large, scientifically-run institute in Hamburg, and the second, based in Kiel, focused on world markets and trade.
Thus Gruppe VI wi was created to train hand-picked SS men in finance according to strictly agreed requirements of individual businesses and industrial firms. In other words, Himmler set up an impressive “production line” of well-trained SS officers planted in select German businesses.
In addition to these institutes, a Central SS Economic Evaluation Department was established to work closely with the Ministries of Economics, Armaments, and Economic Warfare. Key industrialists met with trainees in a business club that was described as a ‘social pooling of interests’.
But he went much further than that. By mid-1944, Heinrich Himmler essentially engineered a pretty much hostile takeover of the most prominent German businesses. Not by buying their shares, of course, but by inserting his trusted men into the key managerial positions.
Dr. Werner Naumann represented Himmler’s interests at the massive chemicals firm of Kali; Georg von Schnitzer was placed in IG Farben; Lyschen at Siemens, Kirschfeld at Ferrostahl and Otto Wolf steel company, Fischer at Conti Oil, Backe at Zucker, Karl Blessing at Unilever, and so on.
The list was seemingly endless – with the exception of Krupp, who miraculously managed to avoid having the SS personnel thrust upon them. However, not for long.
The firms that gathered together on August 10th at the Maison Rouge (which was definitely not the first such meeting) seem to have been the last main German businesses to succumb to Himmler’s plan for the transfer of wealth abroad. One of these firms was Krupp.
It turned out that the SS-Reichsfuhrer was a takeover genius as well as he managed not only to boldly engineer and skillfully execute this endeavor, but to expertly conceal it from friends of foes alike. Albert Speer – a certifiably superior corporate and government manager – commented on Himmler’s success:
“I pity anyone attempting to unravel any enterprise set up by Himmler – the layers of deceit and the breathtaking imagination that this unlikely man was capable of were unreal”
And he was one hundred percent right. Although the Allied intelligence was broadly aware of Himmler’s financial activities and diligently tried to prevent him from achieving his objectives, their success was very limited (to put it mildly).
Although they managed to capture some valuables and freeze the others, most assets disappeared without a trace. To this day, even the true magnitude of Himmler’s financial operations (i.e. transfer of wealth to Europe and Latin America) in 1944-45 is not known – even approximately. He was real good in covering his tracks – much more so than with the Holocaust.
It is an indisputable economic fact that in just ten years, the (West) Germany had all but completely recovered from the devastation of the Second Great War. At the moment, it is the most financially and economically powerful nation in Europe – its undisputed economic and even political leader.
It is commonly believed that the famous “German economic miracle” stands on three cornerstones – hard work, efficient management and an enormous infusion of American capital via the Marshall plan. In reality, much of this miracle can be attributed to “Himmler’s investment” – i.e. financial resources accumulated by the SS and subsequently injected into the German economy.
How big was the “SS contribution” we do not know. And will never know – unless the “Fourth Reich” becomes the reality and the Reichsfuhrer of Die Neue SS decides to make this information public.
We only know (from East German research, of all sources) that after the war the astonishing amounts of money were invested into West German from many countries, including those of Latin America, Turkey, Egypt, the USA, Britain, Sweden and Switzerland (all of them being the destinations of the “Nazi Gold”).
On November 5th, 1944, just two days before the Red House report was submitted to Allied Intelligence, another meeting took place at the Hotel Savoy in Baur en ville, Zurich, that shares startling correspondences to the meeting at the Maison Rouge.
Was it the last meeting of this kind, how many such meetings took place, what was discussed during these meetings – we do not know. We do not even know for sure that these meeting stopped – or continue to that day.
Oh, and one more important thing. Himmler’s financial endeavors in 1944-45 made him not just incredibly rich, but very probably the richest man on Earth (de-facto). Hence, he had no motive whatsoever to get himself caught by the enemy (let alone commit suicide).