Press release:


[I have lightly edited this report on the Oct. 17 Berlin anti-LaRouche conference (the version originally released was apparently a rough translation from the German). I have also added highlighting and footnotes that do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the conference's sponsors, whose version can be read here.--DK]

For the first time in thirty-five years former members, affected families, politicians and scholars joined together to request that there be an investigation of the death of Jeremiah Duggan and the entire LaRouche/BüSo group.[FN 1] On Friday 17th October 2008, a public forum was held in the House of Democracy and Human Rights in Berlin, Germany, where politicians Hans-Christian Ströbele (Green Party) and Professor Gert Weisskirchen (SPD) described the LaRouche group as a dangerous anti-Semitic sect.[FN 2]

Despite phone calls and letters sent by members of the LaRouche group to the media, lawyers and the politicians in an attempt to intimidate them through threats of legal action, all members of the Panel followed their convictions and spoke out strongly about the dangers of this organization. Threats of litigation cannot be allowed to stifle the right to free speech, stated the lawyer Hans Eberhard Schultz, who was the organizer of this event and responsible for taking the case of student Jeremiah Duggan to the Constitutional Court--an action aimed at winning a full investigation of Jeremiah's March 2003 death in unexplained circumstances after being lured into attending a LaRouchian conference that turned out to be a tactic for recruiting him to their youth movement. Jeremiah’s body was found beside a motorway and even though the only witnesses were the drivers involved in the alleged crash, the German police declared almost immediately that this was suicide by road crash and publicly stated they had no need to fully investigate.

This left as unexplained the reasons why Jeremiah died, and his parents have fought a five-year battle for justice.

Herr Ströbele spoke about how he had been threatened by this organization with court proceedings for describing them as anti-Semitic, and how we must all refuse to be intimidated by such tactics.

Professor Weisskirchen referred to the dossier being released at this forum to show the evidence that this is an anti-Semitic sect. He expressed a strong view that this kind of activity has no place in modern day Germany.

Simon Hughes, British MP and President of the Liberal Democrat Party, was an attentive participant in the entire three-and-a-half-hour forum and spoke to broaden the scope of the debate, urging that the circumstances surrounding Jeremiah Duggan's death be thoroughly examined, including by a full enquiry into the workings of the LaRouche group. Hughes's qualifications are as a human rights lawyer and politician with some expertise on the dangers of cults.

The chairman of the event, Dr. Rainer Fromm, referred to the exhibition of documents at the forum which provide evidence that the LaRouche group promotes Holocaust denial and incitement to hatred against the Jews.

There were written statements from the families and former members describing how the LaRouche movement uses fear and guilt to subjugate its members, while at the same time preaching a doctrine of hate to undermine the capacity for independent thinking. Families and former members came from Germany, France, the UK and the USA, and described in very moving terms the way the LaRouche sect causes untold misery to families.

Molly Kronberg flew over from the USA to speak openly about the dangers of the LaRouche group which she knew from decades as a member of the sect. Painful as it was, she declared how Lyndon LaRouche had successfully carried out a character assassination of her husband that led a year ago to his horrific, very public suicide. She gave details about the psychological terror inflicted on members by the leadership and how huge sums of money are sent from the USA to Germany to support their activities. Aglaja Beyes-Corleis, who has written a book about her life inside the sect, spoke about how Wiesbaden is an important centre attracting youth from all over the world to be trained in the LaRouche ideology.

Yves Messer, who was a member of the LaRouche organization from 1983 to 1994, spoke about how hate figures are used to stir up anti-Jewish hatred and how the word “synarchist” is a code word for Jew. He said:

I am Jewish and lost half of my family in Auschwitz. I decided to come out openly in memory of my family. It is so dangerous: even Jews like myself were misled. LaRouche does not attack Jews as such but indirectly, as Chip Berlet has documented, by the use of "code words." The BüSo ran a campaign in Berlin in 2005 talking about "Synarchists," meaning Jewish bankers. They are obsessed with particular persons like Felix Rohatyn (a refugee from Nazi Germany)[FN 3] or Jewish U.S. ambassador John Kornblum (head of Lazard Frères Bank in Bonn).[FN 4] In their pamphlet Helga Zepp-LaRouche called them "financial locusts" who want to destroy the German economy. It is shocking that anti-Semitism is spread from Germany to the rest of the world without using the word "Jew."

Political analyst Chip Berlet provided the evidence that the LaRouche group does great harm by spreading a coded form of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories in Europe today. Senior History Lecturer from Northampton University Dr Matthew Feldman, explained further how the leaders of the LaRouche group with its central arm, the Schiller Institute, are the most ingenious manipulators of hate speech and while retaining a fascist worldview on the one hand, manage to conceal this and thereby sanitize what is a pervasive form of anti-Semitism.

Ursula Caberta, religious sect adviser, spoke about how the refusal by the Hessen authorities to fully investigate the unexplained death of the 22-year-British student in Wiesbaden in 2003 only highlights how little understanding there is about what makes up the dangers of destructive anti-Semitic sects.

Erica Duggan, the mother of Jeremiah Duggan, presented a list of demands from the families: “I have already lost my son and nothing will bring him back but I believe that there has to be a full investigation of Jeremiah’s death and its relation to the LaRouche group – or else the danger continues for others.“

For further information and to contact the sponsors of the Berlin forum, click here.


[1] The Bürgerrechtsbewegung Solidarität (Civil Rights Solidarity Movement), or BüSo, is the latest name of the German LaRouche movement's electoral machine. It is headed by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, Lyndon's Holocaust-denying and ultranationalistic wife (read here and here), who in the 1980s gathered former Nazi military officers, and others, to run for office on the anti-"Bolshevik" ticket of her Patrioten für Deutschland (Patriots for Germany), an earlier incarnation of BüSo. The LaRouche movement in Germany also operates through the Schiller Institute, an international cultural organization founded by Ms. Zepp-LaRouche, as well as the LaRouche-Jugendbewegung (LaRouche Youth Movement, or LYM), sometimes referred to in the sect's German-language publications as just the LaRouche-Jugend--an unmistakeable allusion, in the context of the group's anti-Semitic propaganda, to the infamous Hitler-Jugend.

[2] In Europe, the word "sect" is used to designate what would be called a "cult" in the United States.

[3] Felix Rohatyn (born 1928 in Vienna, Austria) is a New York investment banker and a former U.S. ambassador to France. For a typical example of LaRouche's repulsive attacks on Rohatyn, read here. For an analysis of why LaRouche hates Rohatyn so much, read here.

[4] John C. Kornblum was U.S. Ambassador to Germany from 1997 to 2001. He is currently the chairman of Lazard Germany.