Nazi Germany’s Most Grotesque Secret to Win World War II

As World War II began, National Socialist Germany hatched one of its most devious and notorious plots to bring Britain to its knees. Instead of bombing the country with the power of explosives, Germany would bomb its enemy with money. Operation Bernhard began forging British banknotes of such quality that one Bank of England official called them “the most dangerous ever seen.” The intent was to collapse the British economy and sow chaos by showering its citizens with free money, falling from the sky.

The unit in charge of replicating the money successfully duplicated the rag paper used by the British, engraving near-identical blocks. The Germans also cracked the algorithm that gave each banknote its alphanumeric serial code. It was only through the capture and interrogation of German intelligence leader Alfred Naujocks that the plot was eventually foiled…

The destructive and insidious force of inflation, whether deliberately engineered by the central bank of one’s own country, or by conspiratorial counterfeiters of another nation using it as a weapon of mass destruction of monetary integrity, is well known. Perhaps these Operation Bernhard conspirators were guided by what they had read in the foreword of the 1936 German edition of John Maynard Keynes General Theory, where he observed:

The theory of aggregate production, which is the point of of the following book, nevertheless can be much easier adapted to the conditions of a totalitarian state than the theory of production and distribution of a given production put forth under conditions of free competition and a large degree of laissez-faire. This is one of the reasons that justifies the fact that I call my theory a general theory.

The National Socialist state was the first to adopt and implement Military Keynesianism, followed during the War by the National Security State under Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman in the US. 


12:54 pm on August 7, 2020