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Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Shell litigation

Posted on January 13th, 2017 by Sarah A. Altschuller

The name Kiobel is familiar to many who follow litigation regarding human rights in the United States. Esther Kiobel was a plaintiff in the Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum litigation that led to the 2013 Supreme Court decision which established that the presumption against extraterritoriality applies in cases brought pursuant to the Alien Tort Statute.

Ms. Kiobel is back in U.S. court, this time pursuing access to documents held by Cravath, Swaine, & Moore LLP, which represented Royal Dutch Shell in the earlier litigation.

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The Uncensored History of the Shell Brent Oil and Gas Field

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By John Donovan (updated 18 November 2016)

Energy Voice has announced that it has teamed up with Shell to “celebrate 40 years of Brent”.

A series of related “promoted” articles are being published. I take that as meaning Shell is paying for the articles. If this assumption is correct, the only history included will be of the whitewashed variety.

I doubt there will be any reference to the consequences of Shell’s appalling safety record on the Brent platforms, with falsified safety records, a “Touch F*** All” regime in regard to critical equipment maintenance, followed by the cover-up and the deaths on Brent Bravo, leading to a record-breaking fine. Will the unseaworthy lifeboats get a mention? Of course not. Shell continued to put production and profits before safety. Just read this index of related articles.

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Shell historians attempt to distance Deterding from Hitler

screen-shot-2016-10-24-at-14-26-11EBOOK BY JOHN DONOVAN: SIR HENRI DETERDING AND THE NAZI HISTORY OF ROYAL DUTCH SHELL

Chapter 16: Shell historians attempt to distance Deterding from Hitler

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Shell’s historians downplayed the relationship between Hitler and Deterding. As far they are concerned, the two never met. They said that a request by Sir Henri for a meeting with Hitler in March 1933 was rebuffed and disregarded Deterding’s claim that he met with Hitler in November 1933.  Not only were there meetings. Deterding “was revered and ultimately mourned by Hitler.”

Shell’s historians portrayed the relationship between Deterding and Hitler as standoffish on the part of Hitler, with all of Deterding’s attempts to meet with him being rebuffed. See pages 481 to 485 of RDSH V1.

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Control of Royal Dutch Shell companies in Nazi-occupied Europe

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Chapter 14: Control of Royal Dutch Shell companies in Nazi-occupied Europe

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Hauptmann Eckhardt von Klass

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Hauptmann Eckhardt von Klass (seated)

The Nazis presented considerable challenges to Royal Dutch Shell over control of its subsidiaries in occupied countries. The above caricature (and seated Nazi officer) is a former Shell director, Hauptmann Eckhardt von Klass, the Verwalter (administrator) appointed by the Nazis to “exercise supervision over Group companies in occupied Europe.” See pages 80 and 81 from RDSH V2.

Before, during, and after World War 2, Royal Dutch Shell was the owner of companies located in Germany and Nazi-occupied Europe, including Rhenania-Ossag.

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Shell collaborated in the Nazi annexation of Austria and occupation of Czechoslovakia

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Chapter 11: Shell collaborated in the Nazi annexation of Austria and occupation of Czechoslovakia

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German forces entered Vienna on 17 March 1938 (above). The Nazis annexed Austria in what became known as the Anschluss and occupied Czechoslovakia a year later. Royal Dutch Shell authorized its German subsidiary Rhenania-Ossag, to take over Shell operating companies in both countries.

Being one of the two biggest German oil concerns and the main lube oil manufacturer, Shell subsidiary Rhenania-Ossag was an industry leader in Nazi Germany. Many of its directors and staff were Nazis.

Following Hitler’s annexation of Austria on 12 March 1938 (photo) and the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia in March 1939, Dutch directors of Royal Dutch gave approval to Rhenania-Ossag taking over the Shell operating companies in those countries.

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Royal Dutch Shell and Nazi slave labor

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Chapter 13: Royal Dutch Shell and Nazi slavelabor

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The photograph shows military uniforms worn by marching employees of the Shell German subsidiary, Rhenania-Ossag. A photograph on the next page shows swastika flags on display during a staff meeting. Rhenania-Ossag was part and parcel of the Nazi movement when the Shell Group was in undisputed full control of the company.  A senior director was involved in Nazi military planning.

screen-shot-2016-10-28-at-16-47-56In 1935, Rhenania-Ossag (owned by Royal Dutch Shell) was Germany’s second-largest gas station company, with 16,363 petrol pumps and several refineries. There were active Nazi members in the workforce and management. It’s DG, Dr. Erich Boeder, was involved in Nazi military planning (oil production) on behalf of the company.

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Shell support for the Nazis continued after the retirement of Sir Henri as leader

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Chapter 10: Shell support for the Nazis continued after the retirement of Sir Henri as leader

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The above photograph is of Sir Henri Deterding around the time of his retirement as absolute leader of the Royal Dutch Shell Group, standing alongside his third wife, a thirty-eight-year-old German-born ardent Nazi, Charlotte Knaack. Her admiration for the Nazis probably strengthened his views, and no doubt played a part in the decision to move their home to Germany.

In October 1936, the first news reports of the pending resignation of Sir Henri Deterding as the leader of Royal Dutch Shell Group were published.

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Great friend of the Germans

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Chapter 5: Great friend of the Germans

This chapter deals with the role of Royal Dutch Shell as a contributor to the economy of Nazi Germany and financier of the Third Reich via its long-time Director General, Sir Henri Deterding.  The funding was of a scale that led to Hitler paying homage to him as a great friend of the Germans. Sir Henri actively supported the rearmament of Nazi Germany. He was a generous friend that the Nazis tried to exploit even after his death.

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Any major company in existence for over 100 years is bound to have some skeletons in the closet. In the case of Royal Dutch Shell, it arguably includes indirect responsibility for millions of deaths.

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The Nazi Funeral of Royal Dutch Shell Leader Sir Henri Deterding

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Chapter 5: The Nazi Funeral of Royal Dutch Shell Leader Sir Henri Deterding

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On 10 February 1939, a burial ceremony with many of the trappings of a state funeral was held at a private estate near Berlin. The spectacle included a funeral procession led by a horse-drawn funeral hearse with senior Nazis officials and Shell directors in attendance. An indication of the high esteem in which Sir Henri Deterding was held by his Shell colleagues and by Adolf Hitler, who sent a wreath.

Sir Henri Deterding, a foreign national, was honored with what amounted to a state funeral in Germany, where he was buried.

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Media coverage of Sir Henri Deterding’s Death

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Chapter 4: Media coverage of Sir Henri Deterding’s Death

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Sir Henri Deterding died in St. Moritz, Switzerland on 4 February 1939 several months before the outbreak of the 2nd World War. As could be expected given his global fame as an oil mogul and a man of wealth, mystery and intrigue, there were numerous newspaper obituaries from around the world. Many mentioned his financial support for Hitler and the Nazi movement in Germany.

screen-shot-2016-10-27-at-14-55-06It might seem odd to focus at this early stage on the death of Sir Henri Deterding, but the global news coverage of his death and even more significantly, the location – Nazi Germany – of his extraordinary funeral, speak volumes.

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Royal Dutch Shell and the Nazis

screen-shot-2016-10-24-at-14-26-11EBOOK BY JOHN DONOVAN: SIR HENRI DETERDING AND THE NAZI HISTORY OF ROYAL DUTCH SHELL

Chapter 3: Royal Dutch Shell and the Nazis

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screen-shot-2016-10-27-at-12-42-32In the years just before WW2, a number of Dutch top executives at Royal Dutch Shell let their principles be corrupted by the Third Reich.

All became Nazi appeasers while engaging in activities that financially benefitted Nazi Germany and Shell.

They included at least five Dutch Group Managing Directors of Royal Dutch Shell.

Namely, Sir Henri Deterding, J.E.F. de Kok (who became Deterding’s successor as Director General), Jean Baptiste August “Guus” Kessler Jr., (another subsequent Shell DG), James M de Booy and J.C. Baron van Eck.

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The best historians Shell could buy

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Chapter 1: The best historians Shell could buy

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Shell commissioned a group of eminent “independent” historians (above) mostly Dutch, to author a history of Royal Dutch Shell to mark the Group’s centenary in 2007.  The introduction in Volume 1 pledged independent research and “a proper and even-handed assessment of Deterding.” Something went amiss because the “history,” as published in regard to his dealings with Hitler, is simply untrue.

On 24 May 2015, a light-hearted story in the Prufrock column of The Sunday Times posed the question: “ARE corporate histories the new harbingers of doom?”  It cited the release of corporate histories of two multinational banks that proved embarrassing to the banks due to unforeseen developments.

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Henri Deterding

screen-shot-2016-10-24-at-14-26-11EBOOK BY JOHN DONOVAN: SIR HENRI DETERDING AND THE NAZI HISTORY OF ROYAL DUTCH SHELL

The ebook can be purchased via Amazon websites around the world. Chapter headings are listed below. The introduction and some sample Chapters are accessible via the hyperlinks provided.

INTRODUCTION

CHAPTERS

  1. The best historians Shell could buy
  2. News story February 2015: Shell ship named after a Nazi SS Officer
  3. Royal Dutch Shell and the Nazis
  4. Media coverage of Sir Henri Deterding’s Death
  5. The Nazi Funeral of Royal Dutch Shell leader Sir Henri Deterding
  6. Great friend of the Germans
  7. You Can Be Sure of Shell
  8. Royal Dutch Shell Anti-Semitism
  9. Deterding’s support for Nazi Stormtroopers
  10. Shell support for the Nazis continued after the retirement of Sir Henri as leader
  11. Shell collaborated in the Nazi annexation of Austria and occupation of Czechoslovakia
  12. Shell’s notorious business partner: IG Farben
  13. Royal Dutch Shell and Nazi slave labor
  14. Control of Royal Dutch Shell companies in Nazi-occupied Europe
  15. Nazi connections relating to Shell
  16. Shell historians attempt to distance Deterding from Hitler
  17. Why does it still matter?
  18. Time for a rare public apology from Shell?
  19. Key Dates
  20. Shell cloak and dagger activities
  21. Wikipedia: The sanitization of Shell’s history
  22. Authors unique connection with Shell

Index of Shell leadership financial support for the Nazis

©Copyright © 2016 by John Donovan

All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the Author, except for the use of brief Extracts. The Book is published for educational and research purposes.

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Country home of Sir Henri Deterding in Dobbin, north of Berlin

Country home of Sir Henri Deterding in Dobbin, north of Berlin: Dobbin Estate

German map showing Dobbin, Merklenburg, north of Berlin

German map showing Dobbin, Mecklenburg, north of Berlin

SOURCE

German country home of Sir Henri Deterding of Royal Dutch Shell. Dobbin, Mecklenburg.

Castle Dobbin Estate: German country manor home of Sir Henri Deterding, founder and leader of Royal Dutch Shell. Dobbin, Mecklenburg.

Castle Dobbin was located in an area now known as Dobbin-Linstow, district Rostock. (Glave is a municipality of Dobbin-Linstow in the district of Rostock in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

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CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE

Shell House Berlin opened in 1932

Shell House Berlin opened in 1932

Shell House Berlin opened in 1932

DONOR TO THE NAZI WINTER HELP CHARITY

Bruce Deterding article above

Royal Dutch Shell Wikipedia Article downloaded 19 JAN 2016 (NO MENTION OF SIR HENRI DETERDING)

Winterhilfswerk Wikipedia Article 19 JAN 2015

royaldutchshellplc.com Wikipedia article on 19 Jan 2016

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Shell to dispose of its downstream assets and business completely?

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Screen Shot 2015-07-31 at 19.22.09A report in The Times today describes the plans for Shell Centre development:

London waterfront to take on new look with Italian backing

On the face of it it raises the question as to why, given the movement of the centre of gravity in Royal Dutch Shell to The Netherlands, RDS would want to hold onto a large London office at all. Why be almost unique among large multinationals in having two head Offices?

The answer is in the article. “One Southbank Place will be the new headquarters for Shell International’s downstream business”. 

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Evil repercussions of Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum U.S. Supreme Court Decision

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Screen Shot 2014-10-30 at 09.22.43Plaintiff Esther Kiobel (L) joins a protest against Royal Dutch Shell Petroleum in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington October 1, 2012. REUTERS/Gary Cameron

By John Donovan

Yesterday, Reuters published an article about the legal repercussions in the USA from the landmark decision in 2013 by the U.S. Supreme Court in the famed Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum co case.

Access is provided here to the 35 page judgement issued by the Supreme Court of the United States on April 17, 2013

Esther Kiobel is a regular visitor to this website and says that her husband Barinem Kiobel was executed by the Nigerian regime with the backing of Shell, which she has correctly described as an evil corporation.

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Death of 193 Dutch Strains Russian Relations for Shell, Heineken

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At one point the largest foreign investor in Russia, Shell declined to comment on whether its business would be affected after the downing of the plane. The company lost four employees in the incident, it said yesterday.

BloombergBusinessweek article by Celeste Perri, Maud van Gaal and Fred Pals published 22 July 2014

For centuries, the fortunes of the Netherlands, the wind-swept country carved out of North Sea wetlands, have relied on preserving the peace with its global trading partners. Last week’s downing of an airliner carrying 193 Dutch nationals is testing one of its most important relationships, involving companies from Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) to Heineken NV. (HEIA)

The Netherlands was Russia’s third-biggest trading partner last year, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The Dutch, home to the busiest container port in Europe and the region’s biggest energy company, send dairy products, meat and machinery to Russia, which the U.S. says is complicit in the attack.

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SIR HENRI DETERDING’S CAMPAIGN

Article published 31 December 1936 on page 10 of The Sydney Morning Herald

SIR HENRI DETERDING’S CAMPAIGN.

Reason for £1,000,000 Gift.

LONDON, Dec. 30. 

Sir Henri Deterding, director-general of the Royal Dutch Petroleum Company, and a director of the Shell Transport and Trading Co., Ltd., who has given £1,000,000 for the purchase of Dutch produce for export to Germany, apparently intends the gift as part of the campaign against economic restrictions and Communism. “The main object of the Communists is to prevent co-operation between the nations,” he says. “They therefore started to create trouble in Spain six years ago, and the result is now visible.

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REICH OIL MONOPOLY SOUGHT BY DETERDING

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