Kissinger-Nazi Connections, Part 1

This article is reprinted from the March, 1998 edition of Your Jerusalem and was the first in a three part series detailing some of the lesser known but fully documented activities of Dr. Alfred Heinz (Henry) Kissinger.  The focus of the first part is background: Kissinger’s early years which, it will become clear, strongly shaped his world view.

Part 1:  Kissinger’s Early Years:  Creation of a Dangerous Man

“Random testing of biological weapons on American citizens by the U.S. military and intelligence communities, implanting a microchip which can be activated by low frequency signal to assist in tracking people, mind control tactics developed in conjunction with Nazi psychological warfare techniques, contaminated vaccines responsible for the development of diseases and infant deformities.” I had read more than enough to be thoroughly disgusted. So I decided to get up from my couch, turn off the computer and go look for myself to see if there is any truth behind these rumors. I visited the author and lecturer Dr. Leonard Horowitz near Boston and felt reassured when the train stopped on route 127 (a key number in the Purim story.) His organization, Tetrahedron, Inc., had just produced a new video tape revealing many aspects of Gulf War Syndrome, Iraqi biological weapons deployment and U.S. cover-up of information regarding a regimen of vaccines forced upon 700,000 American soldiers. I saw footage of American troops wandering into an Iraqi munitions bunker filled with chemical and biological weapons that had been sent from several countries, the shipping labels still on the crates.  I saw General Schwarzkopf lying to Congress (not under oath) that his troops had never been exposed to biological or chemical agents without protective battle gear. (Italian chemical weapon sprayers had been used to deploy active agents to turn the sand into biological land mines.)

Kissinger 1950 Harvard Yearbook

Photo of Henry Kissinger from his 1950 Harvard College yearbook.

The paper trail for much of this scenario leads back to a program which unfolded in the last days of World War II. After fighting a horrendous war and witnessing vile crimes against humanity perpetrated by the Nazi regime, the United States military and intelligence communities decided to recruit thousands of the worst Nazi criminal scientists to work for them in America and other parts of the world, and then attempted to cover it up.

Someone had to seek out and gather these Nazis in the chaotic aftermath of the war. Army counter-intelligence employed the services of a particularly gifted young Jewish soldier who had escaped Germany three months before Kristallnacht. This same person would go on to be a top American adviser on nuclear arms and head various other top-level government councils. He would decide to develop biological alternatives to nuclear weapons in around the year 1970.  Besides working in powerful government positions, he then set up a consulting service to advise clients for a fee.

The man to whom we are referring is, of course, Heinz Alfred (Henry) Kissinger. In this and coming articles we deal with Kissinger’s exploits into shaping American, Israeli and world policy. In this first article, however, we give some crucial background on a man whom we shall probably come to know quite well over the coming months, a man who became a chief adviser to the Hollinger Corporation which purchased the largest English language newspaper in Israel for which he now writes a syndicated column.  Perhaps this may be enough for the leaders of the El Paso, Texas Jewish community to seriously question the wisdom of holding their upcoming lecture by Mr. Henry on the fifth of May next to their Holocaust Memorial Museum.

The remainder of the article is excerpted from the book Emerging Viruses by Dr. Leonard G. Horowitz, D.M.D., M.A., M.P.H., a graduate of Harvard University and an internationally known authority in public health information.  The book is meticulously documented and readers interested in learning the original sources may obtain a copy of the book through Amazon or other booksellers.

Early Life

Henry Kissinger was the first-born son of German Jewish parents, Louis and Paula. The couple led their family to freedom in August 1938, less than three months before the Kristallnacht riots destroyed most of the Jewish institutions in Nazi Germany.

“My life in Furch seems to have passed without leaving any lasting impressions,” Kissinger told a German reporter more recently. “That part of my childhood is not a key to anything.”  Minimizing the trauma he faced as a fifteen year old refugee, the statesman added, “I was not consciously unhappy.  I was not acutely aware of what was going on. For children, these things are not that serious.”

“Give me a break,” I thought on reading this, he’s either got to be kidding or steeped in massive denial.  I, too, was a first-born son of a German-Jewish father and Austrian mother who were also fortunate to have survived the Holocaust.  I could relate to Kissinger’s plight better than most. Given this background, plus my postdoctoral degree in behavioral science, I understood well the role persecution can play in the development of personalities and personality disorders.

My mother, at age sixteen, was among the last group of Jews to leave Nazi Austria. Her immortal picture can be seen in the National Holocaust Museum, where she, among dozens, was photographed on her knees, scrubbing the streets of Vienna at Nazi gunpoint.

Though Kissinger may have been spared the worst, I found it incomprehensible that he could have left Nazi Germany, at that age and time, unfazed.

Jews Scrubbing Streets Vienna

Nazis force Jews to scrub the streets of Vienna, 1938.

Denial and Paranoia

I was not alone in this view. Kissinger’s childhood friends also felt his denial was a form of “self delusion.”  Isaacson wrote:

“Some of them see his escape from memory as a key to his legendary insecurities. The child who had to pretend to be someone else so that he could get into soccer games, they say, became an adult who was prone to deceit and self-deception in the pursuit of acceptance by political and social patrons…”

Despite Kissinger’s denials, the Nazi atrocities “were able to damage his soul,” said Fritz Kraemer, a German gentile who resisted Hitler and later became Kissinger’s student in the U.S. Army. “For the formative years of his youth, he faced the horror of his world coming apart, of the father he loved being turned into a helpless mouse.”

Kissinger’s most obvious personality traits, Kraemer argued, could be traced to his Nazi experience.  “It made him seek order and it made him hunger for acceptance, even if it meant trying to please those he considered his intellectual inferiors.”

For Kissinger, the Nazi experience severed the connection between God’s will and historic evolution – a basic principle of the Jewish faith and one of its most important contributions to Western philosophy.  For faithful Jews, historic meaning is linked to divine justice.  After witnessing Hitler’s horror, Kissinger abandoned his religion and embarked on an intellectual journey to find an alternative way to interpret history.

Kissinger’s traumatic childhood also instilled in him “a deep distrust of other people.”  He felt compelled to establish secret wiretaps on the phones of even his closest aides.

Another symptom of Kissinger’s Holocaust rearing was his tendency to disguise, as an adult, any sign of personal weakness.  This compulsion of his had been commonly observed, particularly in his approach to foreign policy negotiations.  Kissinger’s father, “whom he loved deeply, was graced by gentleness and a heart of unquestioning kindness.  But such virtues served only to make him seem weak in the face of Nazi humiliations.”  Thus, as Kissinger matured, he “repeatedly attached himself to forceful, often overbearing patrons with powerful personalities,” including Nelson Rockefeller and Richard Nixon.

Still another childhood legacy was his “philosophical pessimism.”  He maintained a dark and verboten world view “suffused with a sense of tragedy.”  He embraced the view that civilization’s tendency is toward decay, and “statesmen must continually fight against the natural tendency toward international instability.”

“Given a choice of order or justice, he often said, paraphrasing Goethe, he would choose order.  He had seen too clearly the consequences of disorder.”

As a result, Nixon’s Secretary of State became a philosophical, intellectual, and political conservative.  He developed an intuitive aversion to change through revolution and became “uncomfortable with the passions of democracy and populism.”  In essence, Kissinger never embraced “the messy glory of the American political system” particularly since it constrained his “Realpolitik” approach to administering foreign policy.

The Harvard Experience

In the fall of 1947, Kissinger returned from [a military tour in] Germany to join Harvard’s class of 1950 as a twenty-four-year-old mentally gifted sophomore.  “We never, ever discussed our Jewishness,” recalled Arthur Gilman, Kissinger’s roommate.  But during late-night discussions, Kissinger strongly opposed Israel’s creation.  “He said it would alienate the Arabs and jeopardize U.S. interests.  I thought it was a strange view for someone who was a refugee from Nazi Germany.”  Herbert Engelhardt, another dormitory resident said, “I got the impression that Kissinger suffered less anti-Semitism as a youth than I did growing up in New Jersey.”

Kissinger’s university acquaintances described him as an intensely driven, excessively mature, incessant reader who bit his fingernails and established his own rule.  Despite his expressed interest in sports, the young immigrant skipped all athletic events, avoided drinking and partying with his housemates, failed to join clubs or societies, contributed nothing to school publications, and made no effort to participate in student activities.  “Henry could be charming if he decided he wanted to be,” said Gilman, “but he was really a loner.”

“During late-night discussions, Kissinger strongly opposed Israel’s creation. He said it would alienate the Arabs and jeopardize U.S. interests. I thought it was a strange view for someone who was a refugee from Nazi Germany.”

With his interests piqued in government and philosophy, the straight-A student became fascinated with William Yandell Elliot, his first-semester course professor in “The Development of Constitutional Government.”  Owing to outstanding academic achievements, Kissinger was entitled to have Elliot serve as his senior faculty tutor.  And in recommending Henry for Phi Beta Kappa, Elliot’s endorsement read:

“I would say that I have not had any students in the past five years, even among the summa cum laude group, who have had the depth and philosophical insight shown by Mr. Kissinger.  On the other hand, his mind lacks grace and is Teutonic in its systemic thoroughness.  He has a certain emotional bent, perhaps from a refugee origin, that occasionally comes out.  But I would regard him as on the whole a very balanced and just mind.”

Kissinger’s Meaning of History

“In Harvard’s 350-year history,” wrote another Harvard professor, Isaacson, “it has learned to take in stride the peculiar combination of intellectual brilliance and quirkiness that occasionally blossoms among its undergraduates.  Even so, Henry Kissinger’s senior thesis is still described in awed tones.”

The 383-page “Meaning of History” introduced themes about freedom, morality, revolution, creativity, and bureaucracy that recurred throughout Kissinger’s life.  It provided a taste of the intellectual haughtiness for which he became famous; it provided an impression of how the future statesman waged the pursuit of peace as “a constant balancing act that lacked larger meaning.”

In his chapter covering the early twentieth-century political philosopher Spengler, titled “History as an Institution,” Kissinger paraphrased the nationalistic German scholar:  “… amidst a repetition of cataclysmic wars, the civilization petrifies and dies.”

Thus, Kissinger advanced Spengler’s portrayal of history as an incessant and existentially doomed power struggle:  “a vast succession of catastrophic upheavals of which power is not only the manifestation but the exclusive aim.”  Then Kissinger provided a stark portrayal of historic determinism:  “Life is suffering, birth involves death.  Transitoriness is the fate of existence.”

The cure for this moribund state of affairs, according to his thesis, lies in the development of personal awareness and “inward conviction” of each individual’s freedom – a philosophy advanced most notablly by the famous French existentialist Jean Paul Sartre who, following the lead of Karl Marx, became a principal promoter of communism.

Kissinger was also drawn to European conservatism, which focused on national sovereignty and balanced powers.  “Youthful fascination with Kant’s political writings could have moved Kissinger toward a Wilsonian view of America’s interests and mission,” explained Peter Dickson in his study of Kissinger.  “Instead, the émigré turned to Meternich and Bismark – the prime practitioners of power politics.”

Kissinger’s Realpolitik:  Visions of a New World Order

Kissinger’s Realpolitik – his practical philosophy of political history – as described in his Harvard thesis and demonstrated by his diplomatic behavior, showed that throughout his career he sought to “preserve [and even define a] world order.”  World peace was, therefore, not the defining policy objective for Kissinger.

Kissinger believed that a “balance of power” was the best that could be obtained.  This, he believed, could be achieved through the acceptance and control of limited conflicts – “small wars.”  With this in mind, the diplomat’s mission was to insure that the United States and not the Russians would lead and win many of these.

Dr. Leonard Horowitz

Dr. Leonard Horowitz, author of Emerging Viruses.

Next month we will investigate the American recruitment of Nazi scientists after World War 2 (Operation Paperclip), the 1970 U.S. Department of Defense directive to develop immune system ravaging viruses, and Henry Kissinger’s involvement in both.

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