Willi Münzenberg

Willi was a propaganda master and a puppet master on a par with Rupert Murdoch but Willi worked for the communists. The Wikipedia write up manages to sound quite approving. This tells us something about the Wiki. Willi was bright enough not to go to Moscow and get murdered by Stalin. He got hanged later by the NKVD(?) instead. Lenin talent spotted him in Zürich He was responsible for major contributions to the propaganda industry such as Innocents Clubs, full of Useful Idiots. He said

"All news is lies and all propaganda is disguised as news." -  Willi Münzenberg - biography

His great success was with the Reichstag fire. It gave Hitler the excuse to suspend civil liberties, making Germany into a dictatorship with him in charge. Willi organized a very successful Counter-trial in London - see http://www.libertarian.co.uk/lapubs/histn/histn049.pdf, to blame the Nazis. He produced two books. One was The Brown Book of the Hitler Terror and the Burning of the Reichstag. The follow up was THE REICHSTAG FIRE TRIAL: THE SECOND BROWN BOOK OF THE HITLER TERROR. This slowed Adolf down. He has been written up although he has not had the publicity that made Stalin so famous. He was rather proud of the fact that he was one of the few working class men in the Communist Party of Germany.
PS Somebody else agrees - see Toxic Sludge Is Good For You or Lies, Damn Lies and the Public Relations Industry

The Red Millionaire: a Political Biography of Willi Münzenberg
QUOTE
Before Rupert Murdoch there was Willi Münzenberg. These men's worldwide influence as agitprop tycoons far transcended the various middlebrow, predominantly middle-class endeavours of Lord Northcliffe, Lord Beaverbrook, and Henry Luce. The differences between Slick Willi and Rupert are less significant than their similarities. Both men spent their adult lives as revolution's super-salesmen: narrowly political revolution in Münzenberg's case; a wider cultural - and above all, sexual - revolution in Murdoch's. Both men, from youth, proclaimed their intentions with such Iago-like directness that they made adversaries' reproaches resemble the burbling platitudes of a Cassio. Both men apparently believed in the efficacy of their own gruesome snake-oils, and had the gravest problems in attributing criticism to any motive save malicious ignorance (although Münzenberg at times could show a certain elfish geniality).

Above all, both men appreciated, in best Screwtape fashion, the dual role that any media engineer of human souls has needed to undertake in our age. Not only must he reduce the masses to compliant beasts; he must simultaneously fulfill - as Goebbels, for instance, manifestly did not - the more rarefied demands of intelligentsias. Joe Average will adore the bread-and-circuses approach: chanting crowds, doctored photos, deliberately misattributed massacres, and so on. By contrast, Joe Egghead, or anyone wishing to pass for Joe Egghead, has to be enticed with a more subtle - and increasingly incomprehensible - network of front organisations. This last truth Münzenberg perceived with a completeness that astonishes still. (Capable of keen wit, he applied to his creation of fronts the rubric "rabbit-breeding.")
UNQUOTE
Rabbit breeding >>> Innocents Clubs >>> Useful Idiots?

 

Double Lives - Stalin, Willi Münzenberg and the Seduction of the Intellectuals
QUOTE
Brimming with revelations, Koch's astonishing and riveting expose focuses on Willi Münzenberg (c. 1888-1940), a German Communist, founding Bolshevik, Stalin henchman and director of Soviet covert propaganda operations aimed at the West's intelligentsia. Operating out of Paris, where he lived until his murder or suicide, he ran a vast network of controlling newspapers, film companies, magazines and political groups. Münzenberg's propaganda machine, by this account, orchestrated the worldwide campaign on behalf of convicted Italian-American anarchists Sacco and Vanzetti, bolstered Soviet movie director Sergey Eisenstein's reputation in the West, infiltrated England's Bloomsbury coterie and forged links with the infamous Cambridge spy ring of Anthony Blunt, Guy Burgess and associates. Koch, who heads the writing division at Columbia University's School of the Arts, presents persuasive evidence that Münzenberg's apparatus funded painter Georg Grosz and movie director Erwin Piscator and manipulated a host of writers, artist, journalists, Hollywood performers and public figures, among them Ernest Hemingway [ mouthy, overrated ], John Dos Passos, André Gide [ bent, little boys ],
Dorothy Parker, André Malraux, Felix Frankfurter [ Jew, communist, judge in America ] and Bertolt Brecht. We're shown that many of those targeted did not even suspect they had been singled out by Stalin's operatives. Drawing on Russian archives, interviews and U.S. dossiers obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, Koch builds a plausible case that Münzenberg's "anti-fascist campaign" served as a cover for a collaboration between the German and Soviet secret services--a collaboration that began years before the 1939 Nazi-Soviet Pact and helped each dictatorship wipe out its domestic enemies. This real-life spy thriller unveils a major chapter in Soviet espionage.
UNQUOTE
This is the case for the prosecution. But sadly or not, Stalin got there first Willi was murdered by Stalin's men.

 

Willi Münzenberg's Quotes
QUOTE
WILLI MÜNZENBERG
[1889 – 1940] leading German Communist Party (KPD) propagandist
Photography has become an
outstanding and indispensable means of propaganda in the
revolutionary struggle
Willi Münzenberg in Arbeiter-Fotograf, 1931

Photography works upon the human eye: what is seen is reflected in the brain without the need for complicated thought. In this way the bourgeoisie takes advantage of the mental indolence of the masses and does good business as well. - Willi Münzenberg

TASK AND AIMS
Photography has become an indispensable and outstanding means of propaganda in the revolutionary class struggle. Thirty or forty years ago, the bourgeoisie already understood that a photograph has a very special effect on the viewer. For an illustrated book is easier to read and more likely to be bought, and an illustrated paper is a more entertaining read than the lead article of a political daily. Photography works on the human eye; what is seen is reflected in the brain without forcing the viewer into complicated thought. In this way the bourgeoisie caters for the mental laziness of the masses and also makes a lot of money, for the illustrated magazines often achieve a circulation of millions. That’s not all, however. Much more important, in the end, is the political effect which has achieved by the juxtaposition of several pictures by captions and accompanying texts. That is the decisive point. In this way a skilful editor can falsify every photograph into its opposite, and can influence the politically naïve reader in any way he chooses.

The revolutionary workers of all countries have to realize these facts very clearly. They have to fight the class enemy with all means, have to beat him on all fronts. Just as the workers of the Soviet Union have learnt to make their own machine-tools, to invent things themselves to be put into the service of peaceful socialist construction and just as workers in capitalist countries have learnt to write.
Willi Münzenberg

Der Arbeiter-Fotograf,
1931 [cited in: "Photography/Politics: One", Photography Workshop, London 1979, p. 72]
UNQUOTE
He knew what he was talking about.

 

Willi Münzenberg ex Wikipedia
QUOTE
Willi Münzenberg (August 14, 1889October 21, 1940) was a leading propagandist for the KPD (Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands, Communist Party of Germany) in the Weimar Era. General secretary of the Communist Youth International.

Born in Erfurt, Germany the son of a tavern keeper, Münzenberg grew up in poverty. As a young man, he became involved in trade unions and in the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD). Following the SPD split in 1914 between the moderate majority (known as the Majority SPD, MSPD) and the radical minority (known as the Independent SPD, USPD) over the issue of the First World War, Münzenberg sided with the Independent faction. During World War One, Münzenberg often visited Vladimir Lenin at his home in Zurich, Switzerland . In 1918, Münzenberg was a founding member of the KPD. In 1928, Münzenberg was elected to the Reichstag, and served as a member until the banning of the K.P.D in 1933. Münzenberg was one of the few KPD leaders of working-class origin, a fact that was a source of immense pride for Münzenberg.

During the Weimar period, Münzenberg earned the reputation of a brilliant propagandist. His first major success was a triumphant effort to raise money and food for the victims of the Russian famine of 1921. In addition, Münzenberg worked closely with the Comintern and the Soviet secret police (known as the Cheka between 1917–22 and as the OGPU 1922–34) to advance the communist cause internationally. Münzenberg founded a bewildering number of front organizations such the World League Against Imperialism, the International Worker's Relief Fund, and the International Labour Defence, to propagate communist ideas. He instructed his assistant, fellow Comintern agent Otto Katz, to travel to the United States to instigate support for various pro-Soviet and anti-Nazi causes (Katz would later found the Hollywood Anti-Nazi League with Dorothy Parker). To hide the true origins of his front organizations, Münzenberg had front organizations to control other front organizations. Western and fascist intelligence agencies generally referred to all of these organizations as the "Münzenberg Trust". In addition, Münzenberg used these front organizations to make business investments - Münzenberg liked to live in high style and was popularly known as "The Red Millionaire".

After directing the Comintern's handling of the Sacco and Vanzetti case in 1925, Münzenberg became in charge of the League Against Imperialism, created in Brussels in 1927. He then achieved his greatest success with the Counter-trial he organized in London to blame the Reichstag fire on the Nazis. During the Counter-trial, Münzenberg and his staff manufactured most of the evidence that implicated the Nazis in the Reichstag fire. In 1933 and in 1934, the "Münzenberg Trust" published two best-selling books, The Brown Book of the Reichstag Fire and Hitler Terror and its sequel, the Second Brown Book of the Reichstag Fire. The two Brown Books were widely accepted by historians until 1960 when the journalist Fritz Tobias exposed numerous inaccuracies and false information in the Brown Books. In particular, Tobias revealed that the “secret tunnels’ that supposedly allowed the Nazis to enter and leave the Reichstag unseen were in fact tunnels for water piping.

Willi
Münzenberg lived intermittently in Paris, France from 1933 to 1940. During his years in exile, Münzenberg may have had some role in recruiting Kim Philby to work for the Soviet Union, but there is no clear evidence of this. It has been argued that Philby was recruited to work for Soviet intelligence through one of the "Münzenberg Trust's" front organizations, the World Society for the Relief of the Victims of German Fascism based in Paris.

Until 1936, Münzenberg was loyal to Stalin and thus to the aims of Soviet foreign policy. He was well aware of the enormity of Stalin's crimes: he had personally witnessed the use of slave labour in the construction of the White Sea Canal, during which about 100,000 prisoners died, and had witnessed of the betrayal of the German communist party to serve the ends of Soviet foreign policy. Yet he had never broken with Stalin. Urged to return to Moscow by fellow KPD exile Walter Ulbricht, Münzenberg refused, as he suspected that he would be implicated and liquidated in the same Stalinist purges his disinformation organizations had previously sought to obscure (Ulbricht knew this as well, and would later serve Stalin in eliminating 'disloyal' Germans fighting on the Republican side in Spain). Münzenberg continued to work on behalf of anti-fascist causes throughout Western Europe, where he played a role in organizing the recruitment and acquisition of Soviet arms for the International Brigades to fight for the Republican side in the Spanish Civil War.

However, by 1937 the writing was on the wall. Having been expelled from the German communist party (KPD) on trumped-up charges, Münzenberg finally moved into open opposition to Stalin. Back in Paris, he became a genuine leader of German émigré anti-fascism and an anti-Stalinist. His new journal, Die Zukunft, was the intellectual forerunner of Encounter and other Cold War publications.

But his time was running out. His closest professional associates, Karl Radek, Heinz Neumann and countless other German communists, were either shot or worked to death in Soviet labour camps. His sister-in-law, Margarete Buber-Neumann, was imprisoned in Karaganda. The NKVD eventually arranged for her to be handed over to Hitler in 1940, inadvertently saving her life. After spending the war in the relative safety of Ravensbrück concentration camp, Buber-Neumann fled at the end of the war, reaching safety with Anglo-American forces just ahead of the advancing Soviet troops.

In June 1940, Münzenberg fled from Paris to escape the German advance, where he had been making anti-Nazi broadcasts. His flight ended in the south of France, where a NKVD assassination squad finally caught up with him and hanged him from a tree.
UNQUOTE
So
Ravensbrück concentration camp was safer than Karaganda. You do not often hear nice things about Nazi operations. This is one of the few.

 

The Career And Impact Of Willi Münzenberg
QUOTE
Creating False History
Here is an interesting question for readers. Who burnt down the Reichstag in 1933? Can you recall the name of Marinus van der Lubbe, the somewhat crazed Dutchman, who actually set it on fire? And even if you can, do you not think that there was somebody behind it all? After all, it could not be just a lone lunatic, could it? It would be interesting to know how many of those who read the above paragraph nodded and said, “Of course, Hitler ordered and manipulated van der Lubbe (assuming you can recall the name) and then used the fire to get rid of the opposition and to blame the Communists.”.......

That, ladies and gentlemen, is the difference between good and bad propaganda. The truth is that van der Lubbe did act on his own. This has been investigated and proved by a number of historians..........

Everyone, but everyone, quotes Dr Göbbels’s comment about the big lie and compares every would-be spin doctor with him. But who actually believed Göbbels? A large proportion of the German people for a time and some supporters in other countries who wanted to believe him. As opposed to that, millions of people across the world repeat certain “truths” for which there is “full agreement” without once realizing that it is propaganda first started by that genius of spin doctoring and promoter of the Comintern, Willi Münzenberg, without even knowing his name or comparing any tuppenny-ha’penny press officer to him. Now that is propaganda. Sheer genius.
UNQUOTE
This is from Dr Helen Szamuely [ see - COMMENTATORS - Bruges Group Columnists ] and confirms the importance of dear Willi.

 

Sources:-
Lying for the truth: Münzenberg & the Comintern
The Red Millionaire
Willi Münzenberg
Willi the Red

 

The History And Impact Of Marxist Leninist Organisational Theory
Was written by Professor Roche who has read his way over the ground and actually understands what it is all about. Transmission Belts refer to propaganda systems which impose ideas on the peasant masses and command hierarchies which tax them and control them.

 

Willi Münzenberg mentions his book, Propaganda as a Weapon which is only available in German as Propaganda Als Waffe

 

Willi Münzenberg - Wikipedia, the free encyclopaedia 2. Biographie: Willi Münzenberg, 1889-1940 3. BOOKS: The Red Millionaire: Willi Münzenberg, by Sean McMeekin ... 4. Amazon.com: Double Lives: Stalin, Willi Münzenberg and the ... 5. EU Referendum: The big lie or many small lies? 6. Willi Münzenberg (Erfurt 1889 - Saint-Marcellin 1940) 7. Willi Münzenberg's ‘Innocents' Clubs’ 8. T h e F r e e d o m P a r t y 9. The Willi Münzenberg Mystery - The New York Review of Books 10. RED MILLIONAIRE: A POLITICAL BIOGRAPHY OF WILLI MUNZENBERG ... 11. Willi Münzenberg - Genetics Dictionary and Research Guide 12. The Red Millionaire: A Political Biography of Willi Münzenberg, ... 13. JSTOR: Willi Munzenberg: A Political Biography 14. Willi Münzenberg 15. Willi Münzenberg 16. Wapedia - Wiki: Willi Münzenberg 17. Willi Münzenberg | International Communist Current 18. Willi Münzenberg - SpeedyLook encyclopedia 19. ESR | January 26, 2004 | Evil's mouthpiece - A review of The Red ... 20. EBSEES: : Dossier: Willi Münzenberg  

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Updated on 03/02/2013 06:57