America, centrifuge technology, Degussa, Fascists, Fourth Reich, Germany, Holocaust, Monopolies, Monopoly Capital, Nazi Germany, Nazi weapons program, Nazis, nuclear energy, nuclear fuel chain, nuclear waste, nuclear weapons program, Russia, Russian weapons program, Sachsenhausen, Soviet Union, state capitalism, Third Reich, uranium enrichment, Urenco, USA, USSR, West Germany
Degussa took over the Auergesellschaft (Auer werke) in 1934. In 1939 Russian born Nikolaus Riehl, after reading a paper on the potential use of uranium for nuclear energy, approached the Nazi Army Ordnance office with the idea. With a Russian mother and German father one wonders if, after World War II, he did willingly go back with the Russians and work on their nuclear project for a decade before returning to Germany. CIA research from the period say that he volunteered. Pretending that he was forced appears a re-writing of history by him and/or the West German government to excuse his return from Russia. His colleague under the Nazis and Russians, Günter Wirths, also returned to Germany and formed Nukem, itself a co-founder of URENCO. Nukem bragged in 1985 that they went back to 1940, calling it their 25th anniversary! It is easy to suspect that Riehl and/or Wirths may be the creators of the centrifuge technology used by URENCO. Regardless, it is recognized that URENCO’s centrifuge technology came from some of these old Nazi teams, which, willingly or unwillingly, went to work on the development of the Russian Nuclear bomb. As has already been discussed in an earlier post, many of the key scientists for the US nuclear weapons project were German educated.
Auerwerke did use Sachsenhausen slave labor, though surviving records discuss women making gas masks, cots, etc. Men and women did work in the uranium oxide production.
Prisoners in Sachsenhausen, 19 December 1938, US National Archives
“Sachsenhausen-Oranienburg was a Nazi concentration camp in Oranienburg, Germany, used primarily for political prisoners from 1936 to the end of the Third Reich in May 1945.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sachsenhausen_concentration_camp This says that it was initially for political prisoners but that there was a shift over time:
Nazi Companies Got Monopoly Status By Taking Jewish Firms; They Kept that Status Post-War
Not only was the nuclear industry, especially the German and Russian nuclear industries, created by Nazi scientists, which itself speaks volumes, but, more generally, German Nazi companies continued to benefit from ill-gotten monopoly status after World War II. The creation of the US nuclear bomb was reactive to belief that Nazis would make a nuclear bomb. Currently the only uranium enrichment facility in the US is URENCO, born of an old Nazi company and Nazi scientists, with help from their Dutch and British friends.
“The Deutsche Gasglühlicht AG (Degea, German Gas Light Company), was founded in 1892 through the combined efforts of the Jewish entrepreneur and banker Geheimrat (Privy Councillor) Leopold Koppel and the Austrian chemist and inventor Carl Auer von Welsbach. It was the forerunner of Auergesellschaft…. Geheimrat Koppel, who owned Auergesellschaft, was later intimately involved in the financing of and influencing the direction of scientific entities in Germany. Among them were the Kaiser-Wilhelm Ges@ellschaft (Kaiser Wilhelm Society) and its research institutes. The Third Reich forced Koppel to sell Auergesellschaft, and it was purchased in 1934 by the German corporation Degussa, a large chemical company with extensive experience in the production of metals.…. Their Oranienburg plant, 15 miles (24 km) northeast of Berlin, was constructed in 1926, and their Auer-Glaswerke was constructed in 1938.…” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auergesellschaft
Nikolaus “Riehl was born in Saint Petersburg, Russia in 1901. His mother was Russian and his father was a professional German engineer employed by Siemens and Halske. With this background, Riehl spoke fluent German and Russian. From 1920 to 1927, he was educated at the Saint Petersburg Polytechnical University and Humboldt University of Berlin. He received his doctorate in nuclear chemistry from the University of Berlin in 1927, under the guidance of the nuclear physicist Lise Meitnerand the nuclear chemist Otto Hahn; his thesis topic was on Geiger-Müller counters for beta ray spectroscopy. Riehl initially took a position in German industry with Auergesellschaft, where he became an authority on luminescence. While he completed his Habilitation, he continued his industrial career at Auergesellschaft, as opposed to working in academia. From 1927, he was a staff scientist in the radiology department. From 1937, he was head of the optical engineering department. From 1939 to 1945, he was the director of the scientific headquarters.”
[NB: Nazi Germany was good to him, he jumped from department head to scientific director.]
“Auergesellschaft had a substantial amount of “waste” uranium from which it had extracted radium. After reading a paper in 1939 by Siegfried Flügge, on the technical use of nuclear energy from uranium, Riehl recognized a business opportunity for the company, and, in July of that year, went to the Heereswaffenamt (HWA, Army Ordnance Office) to discuss the production of uranium. The HWA was interested and Riehl committed corporate resources to the task. The HWA eventually provided an order for the production of uranium oxide, which took place in the Auergesellschaft plant in Oranienburg, north of Berlin. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auergesellschaft
Whether or not the scientists had nuclear energy in mind, the Nazi government quickly got other ideas. As theoretical physicists, one doubts that they cared at all what the uses were. They probably lived in la-la land and looked at the seams of the ceiling while they walked down the hall:
“Siegfried Flügge (16 March 1912, in Dresden – 15 December 1997, in Hinterzarten) was a German theoretical physicist and made contributions to nuclear physics and the theoretical basis for nuclear weapons. He worked in the German Uranverein (nuclear weapons project). From 1941 onward he was a lecturer at several German universities, and from 1956 to 1984, editor of the 54-volume, prestigious Handbuch der Physik“. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siegfried_Flügge Or, perhaps, pretending to be theoretical physicists is a cheap excuse to do as they please.
With the interest of the HWA, Riehl, and his colleague Günter Wirths [Later founder of Nukem and thus of URENCO] set up an industrial-scale production of high-purity uranium oxide at the Auergesellschaft plant in Oranienburg. Adding to the capabilities in the final stages of metallic uranium production were the strength’s of the Degussa corporation’s capabilities in metals production.
The Auer Oranienburg plant provided the uranium sheets and cubes for the Uranmaschine (uranium machine, i.e., nuclear reactor) experiments conducted at the Kaiser-Wilhelm Gesellschaft’s Institut für Physik (KWIP, Kaiser Wilhelm Institute of Physics) and the Versuchsstelle (testing station) of the Heereswaffenamt (Army Ordnance Office) in Gottow, under the German nuclear energy project Uranverein. The G-1 experiment performed at the HWA testing station, under the direction of Kurt Diebner, had lattices of 6,800 uranium oxide cubes (about 25 tons), in the nuclear moderator paraffin.
… The use of Russian nuclear physicists in the wake of Soviet troop advances to identify and “requisition” equipment, materiel, intellectual property, and personnel useful to the Russian atomic bomb project is similar to the American Operation Alsos… In early 1945, the Soviets initiated an effort similar to Alsos (Russian Alsos). Forty out of less than 100 Russian scientists from the Soviet atomic bomb project’s Laboratory No. 2 went to Germany, Austria, and Czechoslovakia in support of acquisitions for the project. … The two colonels requested that Riehl join them in Berlin for a few days,… This sojourn in Berlin turned into 10 years in the Soviet Union. Riehl and his staff, including their families, were flown to Moscow on 9 July 1945. Flying Riehl and his staff to Russia demonstrates the importance the Soviets placed on the production of uranium in their atomic bomb project. Eventually, Riehl’s entire laboratory was dismantled and transported to the Soviet Union… Work of the American Operation Alsos teams, in November 1944, uncovered leads which took them to a company in Paris that handled rare earths and had been taken over by the Auergesellschaft. This, combined with information gathered in the same month through an Alsos team in Strasbourg, confirmed that the Auergesellschaft Oranienburg plant was involved in the production of uranium and thorium metals. Since the plant was to be in the future Soviet zone of occupation and the Russian troops would get there before the Allies, General Leslie Groves, commander of the Manhattan Project, recommended to General George Marshall that the plant be destroyed by aerial bombardment, in order to deny its uranium production equipment to the Russians. On 15 March 1945, 612 B-17 Flying Fortress bombers of the Eighth Air Force dropped 1,506 tons of high-explosive and 178 tons of incendiary bombs on the plant. Riehl visited the site with the Russians and said that the facility was mostly destroyed. Riehl also recalled long after the war that the Russians knew precisely why the Americans had bombed the facility – the attack had been directed at them rather than the Germans.
When a Soviet search team arrived at the Auergesellschaft facility in Oranienburg, they found nearly 100 tons of fairly pure uranium oxide. The Soviet Union took this uranium as reparations, which amounted to between 25% and 40% of the uranium taken from Germany and Czechoslovakia at the end of the war. Khariton said the uranium found there saved the Soviet Union a year on its atomic bomb project.… https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auergesellschaft
Notice this says that Riehl volunteered. He probably pretended he was forced later, as an excuse to return to West Germany. The West Germans government would have believed what was convenient to them, and their former Nazi monopoly corporations, which wanted in on the nuclear game. One suspects that Wikipedia may have been intentially sanitized by German corporate lakeys:
“We had read the technical investigation reports from FIAT (Field Information Agency /Technical) on the production of uranium at the Auergesellschaft Plant in Berlin/Oranienburg. We also knew that Dr. Nikolaus Riehl — with his whole research team from Auergesellschaft — had met the Russians, volunteering to help them make uranium for their atomic bomb project. We knew from intercepted letters that the group was still together, writing from the cover address PO Box 1037P, Moscow. We knew Auergesellschaft during World War II had made the uranium metal for the German Uranverein — the unsuccessful German atomic bomb project — by using metallic calcium to reduce uranium oxide to uranium metal (not as “slowing agent”). We had analyzed the two-inch cubes of uranium metal from the incomplete German nuclear reactor which the Alsos Mission had found in the minuscule village of Stadtilm in Thuringia. We knew German uranium was terrible — full of oxides and voids, though it was fairly pure otherwise by non-atomic standards. The files also disgorged that in 1945 the Russians had started to dismantle and take to Russia the small calcium plant at the enormous Bitterfeld Combine, in addition to the big magnesium facility…. At home, Col. Valente selected Dr. Frank H. Spedding at the Institute of Atomic Research, Ames Laboratory, Ames, Iowa, as the man who would know most about uranium metallurgy — having been concerned with that aspect of atomic energy since the early forties. Spedding was quite firm, to make uranium metal for reactor use, the U.S. normally reduced uranium fluoride with magnesium metal — because it was cheaper. The magnesium had to be made by the Pidgeon process, in which dolomite is reduced with ferro silicon at very high temperatures; normal magnesium produced from sea water by electrolysis was not pure enough. Reduction of uranium oxide with calcium, Spedding continued, always gave a poor product. However, reduction of uranium fluoride with calcium gave properly liquid melts, and an excellent product on cooling. The calcium had to be distilled for adequate purity. Elements like boron, vanadium, manganese, should they become incorporated into the uranium metal even in minute amounts, would tend to absorb neutrons and stop the nuclear reaction. Thus these elements also had to be kept to exceedingly low amounts in the calcium used to make the uranium metal…” https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-study-of-intelligence/kent-csi/vol16no4/html/v17i1a04p_0001.htm
According to the German newspaper “Die Zeit”: The 25th silver anniversary document for Nukem proclaimed that it started in 1940. Nukem is a descendant of the Degussa “nuclear group” that provided uranium for Heisenberg’s [Nazi] experimental reactor. Nuclear scientists restarted in 1955 at Degussa. The “nuclear group” reassembled under the leadership of Dr. Günther Wirth, already member of the nuclear project under the Nazi regime, and who went to Russia after World War II, where manufacturing methods for uranium metal production were developed. Already at the official founding of Nukem by Degussa in 1960, 147 people worked in the “nuclear village”. http://www.zeit.de/1987/09/die-hanauer-plutoniumkueche/seite-3
“Günter Wirths (1 June 1911 – 26 January 2005) was a German chemist who was an authority on uranium production, especially reactor-grade. He worked at Auergesellschaft in the production of uranium for the Heereswaffenamt and its Uranverein project. In 1945, he went to “the Soviet Union to work on the Russian atomic bomb project.” After leaving “the Soviet Union, he settled in West Germany, and worked at the Degussa company. Wirths was a colleague of Nikolaus Riehl, who was the director of the scientific headquarters of Auergesellschaft“.
Nazi-Soviet Pact of 1939: Stalin and Hitler were Buddies
“The Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, (also known as the Nazi–Soviet Pact), named after the Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov and the German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop, officially the Treaty of Non-aggression between Germany and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics,[a] was a non-aggression pact signed between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in Moscow on 23 August 1939. The pact remained in force until the German government broke it by launching an attack on the Soviet positions in Eastern Poland on 22 June 1941 contrary to the supplementary protocol of the German-Soviet Frontier Treaty dictating the new European spheres of interest.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molotov–Ribbentrop_Pact
Returning to Auergesellschaft:
“Their main research activities, up to the close of World War II, were on gas mantles, Luminescence, rare earths, radioactivity, and on uranium and thorium compounds. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auergesellschaft Beware that gas mantles may still be radioactive: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gas_mantle
Nikolaus Riehl’s colleague from Nazi and Soviet days, Günter Wirths, was one of the founders of Nukem, and thus ultimately URENCO.
URENCO uses a technique for uranium enrichment, developed by Nazi scientists, allegedly within the Soviet Union: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zippe-type_centrifuge “Flying back to Europe in 1960, Dr. Zippe worked in industry, especially in West Germany…” http://www.nytimes.com/2004/03/23/science/slender-and-elegant-it-fuels-the-bomb.html?_r=0 While the claim is that Dr. Zippe recalled by memory, one has to wonder if this is true, and if it was really developed within the USSR, or already developed in Germany.
In 1971 NUKEM was one of the three co-founders of URENCO (33%), via Uranit. The other 66% is held by the British and Dutch governments. Nukem was founded in 1960 with Degussa as the largest shareholder, 52.5%. RWE was the second largest shareholder by 1965. Degussa prospered under the Nazis, and provided poison gas for the Nazi death camps, and melted stolen gold, allegedly including from the teeth of Nazi victims. Degussa also supplied the uranium oxide for the Nazi Nuclear Reactor and Weapons project, through ownership of Auer werke, as we’ve just seen: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2016/03/18/nazi-gold-the-merkers-mine-treasure-and-the-dumping-of-german-nuclear-waste-on-america/ https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2016/03/18/from-cooperation-to-complicity-degussa-in-the-third-reich-book-review-of-peter-hayes-book/
RWE did very well for itself in Nazi Germany through taking over companies of a Jewish competitor: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2016/03/19/paul-silverberg-lost-all-to-the-nazis-including-rag-and-rew-to-rwe-thyssen-flick/ The military build-up required more energy consumption by energy-intensive heavy industries.
Currently URENCO is owned in equal parts by the UK and Dutch governments, and German utilities RWE and E.ON. There is interesting trivia in that Oranienburg is named for the Dutch “House of Orange”, which also kept the UK protestant (i.e. William of Orange).
Subsequent to a major nuclear waste scandal, Degussa sold its part of Nukem to RWE ca 1990. Nukem was sold to Cameco in 2012. E.ON has largely owned Degussa, at least until the early to mid 2000s, and may still to this day, just more indirectly.
It is 200 tonnes of nuclear fuel made by Nukem, now nuclear waste, that Germany wishes to dump on America. See info at bottom of this post to oppose (until 25 March). E.ON. and RWE are currently suing Germany over the shuttering of their dangerous and decrepit nuclear reactors. Leaving Nazi companies, with their dangerous and crappy “technologies” that don’t even deserve that term, free rein comes back to bite. They are clearly philosophical heirs to Nazi Germany. Remember they got their monopoly status by taking over competitors with the help of the Nazis and NOT because of quality. VW and Siemens stand in this fascist tradition. These companies, which prospered during, and contributed to the Third Reich, were not adequately punished, and have continued to cause death and destruction. A heavy price is being paid. The Obama administration is working with Merkel, lock-step, goose-step?, to turn America into a dumping ground for over 200 tonnes of German nuclear waste. Some Germans are resisting, as some Germans did resist Hitler. Where is America’s resistance to becoming a nuclear waste dump?
The US DOE has unofficially (not published in Federal Register) extended the German waste dumping on America comment deadline. To be anonymous you will have to send a disposable email, or send it by post with no return address. People should have the right to “vote” anonymously, either on the Federal Register web site, or on an election day ballot.
“Comments may be submitted by email to GermanSpentNuclearFuelEA@leidos.com. Direct written comments on the Draft Spent Nuclear Fuel from Germany EA to Tracy Williams, NEPA Compliance Officer, U.S. Department of Energy, P.O. Box B, Aiken, South Carolina 29802. DOE has extended the public comment period in response to several requests. The public comment period now ends March 25, 2016. DOE will consider all comments received via email by 11:59PM Eastern Standard Time or postmarked by that date. Comments submitted after that date and time will be considered to the extent practicable.” http://energy.gov/nepa/ea-1977-acceptance-and-disposition-spent-nuclear-fuel-containing-us-origin-highly-enriched The following article had some good ideas-points. They recommended contacting governmental reps and wondered if the Presidential candidates are aware: http://www.examiner.com/article/radioactive-waste-shipment-to-srs-public-comment-period-extended
“At the beginning of the 20th century, Marie Curie discovered, in tons of pitchblende ore containing uraninite from Joachimsthal, the element radium, for which she won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Until the First World War this was the only known source of radium in the world… In 1929, Dr Löwy of Prague established that ‘mysterious emanations’ in the mine led to a form of cancer. Ventilation and watering measures were introduced, miners were given higher pay and longer vacations, but death rates remained high. In 1938, it was annexed by Germany as one of the municipalities in Sudetenland. The German-speaking population was expelled in 1945 (see the Beneš decrees) and replaced by Czech settlers.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jáchymov
“OSRAM was founded in 1919 by the merger of the lighting businesses of Auergesellschaft, Siemens & Halske and Allgemeine Elektrizitäts-Gesellschaft(AEG). On 5 July 2013, OSRAM was spun off from Siemens, the listing of the stocks began on 8 July 2013 on Frankfurt Stock Exchange.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osram
It’s not just those on the ground who died with the bombing of Oranienburg:
“The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced 6 AUG that the remains of a U.S. serviceman, lost during World War II, have been identified and are being returned to his family for burial with full military honors. U.S. Army Air Forces Staff Sgt. Gerald Von Atkinson, 21, of Ramer, Ala., will be buried Aug. 16 in Chattahoochee, Fla. On April 10, 1945, Atkinson and eight other crew members aboard a B-17G, were assigned to the 303rd Bombardment Group (Heavy). Atkinson was assigned as a spot jammer aboard the aircraft that departed Molesworth, England on a bombing mission over Oranienburg, Germany. During the mission the aircraft crashed and Atkinson was reported missing. Atkinson’s aircraft, along with 38 other aircraft from the 303rd Bombardment Group, were flying in a formation as part of a major allied bombing operation against targets in Germany. After successfully dropping their ordnance, Atkinson’s aircraft was attacked by six to eight German ME-262 jets. The aircraft crashed into the Groβ Glasow Lake near Groβ Schonebeck, Germany. Of the crew of nine, only one crewmember survived.”
NB: We cannot recall if these scientists were or were not members of the Nazi party, or if anything said. However, if a security guard, in his 90s, is being put on trial, why not these Nazi scientists? Tracing the chain from Nazis to Russia to URENCO was suspiciously difficult. We call them Nazis but leave it to the reader to decide. Regardless, they have created a death-dealing machine which continues forever and are trying to nuke America. Looks like Nazis.