Latin America’s growing alliance with Europe may at first appear to be the haphazard result of undirected forces. The truth, however, is that Germany has had a goal to control Latin America for at least a century.
It is well known that German Kaiser Wilhelm II had plans to use Mexico as a launch pad to invade the U.S. if America entered World War I. The revelation of this plan in the Zimmerman Telegram is what finally prompted America to enter the war on the side of the Allies.
What is not as well known, however, is that in addition to this proposed alliance with Mexico, the Germans also sought a strong presence in the southern part of South America.
Shortly before hostilities broke out in World War I, the famous German general and propagandist Otto Tannenberg wrote that “Germany will take under its protection the republics of Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay; furthermore, the southern third of Bolivia and the southern portion of Brazil” (Michael Sayers and Albert E. Kahn, The Plot Against the Peace, 1945).
Germany’s defeat in World War I brought a temporary halt to these plans. They resumed, however, once Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Party came to power.
Nazi propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels wrote in the March 26, 1944, edition of Das Reich that “Argentina will one day be at the head of a tariff union comprising the nations in the southern half of South America. Such a focus of opposition against the United States of America will, together with Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay, form a powerful economic bloc; and eventually, by way of Peru, it will spread northward to place the dollar colony of Brazil in a difficult position.”
It is unsettling how closely today’s South America matches Goebbels’s prediction!
The continent is composed of two tariff unions that are about to merge into an economic and political alliance. Argentina may not be the head of this union, but it is certainly a major member, and the former “dollar colony” of Brazil is already on board as the dominant member of the forming Union of South American Nations.
How did this happen? Not overnight!
In 1996, the American government declassified a World War II intelligence document relating shocking details of a secret Nazi meeting of industrialists that took place on Aug. 10, 1944, in Strasbourg, France. The Nazis’ purpose was to instruct German industrialists how to conduct “a postwar commercial campaign” to finance the Nazi Party, “which would be forced to go underground,” thus ensuring that “a strong German Empire can be created after the defeat.”
These industrialists were specifically told to strengthen Germany “through their exports” and to “make contacts and alliances with foreign firms.” Many of the corporations represented at this meeting, such as Krupp and Volkswagenwerk, chose Latin America as their site of foreign investment.
From 1943 until his death in 1967, Alfried Krupp chaired the board of directors of Fried Krupp AG, predecessor of today’s industrial colossus ThyssenKrupp. Though he was convicted for war crimes at Nuremberg in 1947, the Allies released him from prison in 1951 and let him resume sole proprietorship of Fried Krupp AG. Loyal to the instructions his representative received from Nazi officials at the Strasbourg meeting, Alfried immediately went to work creating new export markets in Eastern Europe, Africa and Latin America, especially in Brazil.
When he died in 1967, Krupp’s personal copy of Mein Kampf was still on his nightstand.
Almost all of the Nazis and their industrial agents have since died, but their children and successors are still working to strengthen the relationship between Latin American countries and the German Fatherland. The situation is just a bit more subtle and a bit more sophisticated than in the previous two world wars. The racist political activists of yesterday have become the respectable businessmen and technocrats of today! ▪