FRANÇOIS GENOUD WAS undoubtedly one of the most important Nazis in the latter half of the 20th century who provided an ideological, financial and organisational link directly from the Nazi leadership in the Second World War to their contemporary descendents. A deeply enigmatic and mysterious figure with shadowy connections with intelligence services, bankers, Nazis and pro-Palestinian terrorists, he was also intimately involved with Jacques Vergès.
Genoud was the authorised publisher of posthumous writings by Adolf Hitler, Martin Bormann and Joseph Goebbels, was heavily involved in transferring looted Nazi gold and valuables into the Swiss banking system, bankrolled the defence of captured Nazis such as Adolf Eichmann and Klaus Barbie and was an active financier of Arab terrorist groups which he regarded as carrying on the tradition of antisemitic violence.
Born in Switzerland in 1915, Genoud actually met Hitler in Germany when he was 16. Sixty years after that meeting he was quoted in the British press saying: "My views have not changed since I was a young man. Hitler was a great leader, and if he had won the War the world would be a better place today". In 1936, he travelled to Palestine where he met the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, the pro-Nazi religious and political leader of Palestinian Muslims, Muhammed Amin el-Husseini. According to the journalist David Lee Preston and British author Gitta Sereny, the Grand Mufti "would consider [Genoud] a confidant until his death in 1974".
During the Second World War Genoud worked for German intelligence and travelled extensively in the Middle East. After meeting leading Nazis at the Nuremberg trials in 1946, he obtained Bormann’s account of Hitler's conversations which was published as Hitler's Table Talk. In the preface to this book, Genoud apparently wrote that Hitler wanted the people of the Third World to carry on the work of the Thousand Year Reich. Genoud subsequently became literary executor for Hitler and Goebbels and became wealthy on the proceeds. [...]
In 1958 he established the Arab Commercial Bank in Switzerland through which he administered the FLN's finances. And, during the independence struggle, he met Vergès, then an up-and-coming lawyer committed to the Third World. Millions of dollars raised by the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) passed through accounts in the Arab Commercial Bank. But Genoud offered more public support as well. When three members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) were arrested in Zurich after an attack on an El AI plane in 1969, their legal costs were paid by Genoud, and their representative in court was Vergès.
Genoud was a key participant in the setting up of the postwar nazi international the New European Order, and played a leading role at its 1969 conference where a unity of sorts was established between neo-nazis and Palestinian groups embarked upon armed struggle against Israel. His participation was confirmed by Searchlight which obtained a photograph of him at the event.
|The Nazi New European Order meeting in Barcelona in 1969 at which François Genoud was on the platform.|
In 1982, two members of Carlos the Jackal’s terrorist group were held in Paris apparently about to blow up a coffee bar opposite the town hall. Bruno Bréguet and Magdelena Kopp, Carlos's wife, were former members of the terrorist Baader-Meinhof gang, and Bréguet was a close friend of Genoud who in 1970 had campaigned energetically to have him released from a prison in Israel after earlier terrorist attacks. Their lawyer was Vergès, who went on record declaring his "esteem" for them.
Then in 1987 Genoud summoned Vergès and asked him to represent Barbie in Lyons and also allegedly funded the legal costs. Genoud had connections with nearly all the most important figures in European nazi politics including the discredited Holocaust denier David Irving (who has extensive correspondence with Genoud on his own website dating back to the early 1970s [toujours consultables sur le site d'Irving]).
When Genoud followed his beloved Führer by committing suicide in 1996, he was under investigation by the Swiss and US authorities for his central role in the looting of Nazi gold from Jewish victims and its sequestering in Swiss banks.