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This article appears in the June 16, 2006 issue of Executive Intelligence Review. It originally appeared as part of a white paper issued by the Lyndon LaRouche Political Action Committee, and is reproduced here with LaRouche PAC's permission.

The French-Nazi Connection

by Pierre Beaudry and Jeffrey Steinberg

Some gullible individuals, including gullible members of the U.S. Congress, still think that Felix Rohatyn is just another nasty banker. What they don't understand, or choose not to understand, is that Rohatyn is an extension of the 1930s and 1940s Nazi operations inside France, operations associated with a London/Paris-centered faction of international finance, known then and now as the Synarchist International.

Felix Rohatyn today faithfully represents the same policies and the same outlook as the wartime French Nazi collaborationists, associated with his own Lazard Frères bank and its closely allied spawn, Banque Worms. Rohatyn's now-exposed current role in the total dismantling and overseas "outsourcing" of the U.S. automobile-manufacturing sector, with its embedded machine-tool capacity so vital to America's economic national security, is thoroughly consistent with this pedigree. In this scandalous assault on America's once-great industrial base, Rohatyn is acting, not as an American, but as an agent of the Paris-centered financier networks that are today's successor generation of European Synarchist bankers. Particularly since his tenure as U.S. Ambassador to France, Felix Rohatyn has revived the now-70-year-old Synarchist collaboration between his own Lazard banking group and the Synarchist Worms Group, today represented by Gerard Worms. Both Rohatyn and Gerard Worms, in recent years, have been co-directors of three major European financial entities: Suez Groupe, Rothschild et Cie Banque, and The Publicis Groupe, the world's fourth-largest communications firm. In Publicis Groupe, Worms and Rohatyn sit with Michel David-Weill, the longtime managing director of Lazard.

The Wartime Documentation

During the late 1920s, the Paris branch of the Lazard banking interests helped establish the Banque Worms, on behalf of the French Synarchist industrialist Hippolyte Worms. French intelligence documents from the 1930s identified Hippolyte Worms as one of the original 12 members of the secret Synarchist Movement of Empire, a group at the heart of the Nazi collaboration. The Banque Worms, otherwise referred to as "the Worms Group," came to dominate the pro-Hitler Vichy government of post-1940 France, maintaining throughout its close ties to the London-New York-Paris Lazard group. It was during the pre-Vichy period that Lazard bankers Frederic Bloch-Laine and Andre Meyer, later the mentor of Felix Rohatyn, were dominant behind-the-scenes figures in the banking apparatus that later steered the Nazi collaborationist regime of Pétain, Laval, and Darlan, through Banque Worms.

The U.S. intelligence service and diplomatic corps of the 1930s and 1940s were fully aware of the pro-Hitler treachery of the Banque Worms Group.

William Langer, a wartime officer in the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), prepared the official report for President Franklin Roosevelt on the United States government's dealings with Vichy France. The report was later published in 1947 in a book, Our Vichy Gamble (New York, Alfred A. Knopf), which was based on Langer's review of the wartime classified U.S. and French archives.

Speaking of Nazi collaborator Admiral Jean François Darlan, Langer wrote, "Darlan's henchmen were not confined to the fleet. His policy of collaboration with Germany could count on more than enough eager supporters among French industrial and banking interests—in short, among those who even before the war, had turned to Nazi Germany and had looked to Hitler as the savior of Europe from Communism. These were the elements which originally backed Pétain and Weygand—elements that stuck to the program after both these men had begun to back away from it. These people were as good fascists as any in Europe. They dreaded the Popular Front like the plague and were convinced that they could prosper even under Hitler's iron rod. Many of them had long had extensive and intimate business relations with German interests and were still dreaming of a new system of 'synarchy,' which meant government of Europe on fascist principles by an international brotherhood of financiers and industrialists. Laval had long been associated with this group."

Langer identified the center of the French Synarchy as the Banque Worms et Cie. "To realize the extent to which members of the Banque Worms group had been taken into the government by Autumn of 1941, a brief survey of the council and of the Secretaries of State will be most profitable." Lang then itemized a list of dozens of top Vichy ministers who were all from the Worms Group, and who controlled every aspect of the economic life of Vichy France.

Langer's extensive account of wartime France was based, in part, on the communiqués from U.S. Ambassador Anthony J. Drexel Biddle to President Franklin Roosevelt. On Jan. 7, 1942, the Ambassador wrote to the President of the Synarchist/Banque Worms control over Vichy: "This group should be regarded not as Frenchmen, any more than their corresponding members in Germany should be regarded as Germans, for the interests of both groups are so intermingled as to be indistinguishable; their whole interest is focussed upon furtherance of their industrial and financial stakes."

Drexel Biddle left no room for doubt that he was equating the Banque Worms group with the worst of the Nazi collaborationists. "On the one hand," he explained, "Pierre Pucheu (Interior), and Yves Bouthillier (National Economy) were members of the Worms clique. Gerard Bergeret (Secretary of State for Aviation) was included by some among Pétain's personal following, by others among the Worms group. Excluding Bergeret, the Secretaries of State were almost to a man associates of the same clique."

Scores of other reports, many of them obtained by Executive Intelligence Review from the National Archives of the United States, catalogued the in-depth collusion between the Worms group and the Nazi regime in occupied France. A series of three in-depth intelligence dossiers traced the pedigree of the three main branches of Lazard Brothers (New York, London, Paris), into European wartime Synarchy.

Many will attempt to deny that Felix Rohatyn is of the same Nazi pedigree as his Lazard and Banque Worms predecessors of the 1930s and 1940s. But the evidence is massive.

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