August Oetker of the German pizza giant, Dr. Oetker, has revealed that his family’s business is marred with ties to the Nazi party during the WWII era.
The head of one of the world’s biggest frozen pizza producers has spoken ahead of a new book that chronicled the family’s links to the Nazis.
His father, Rudolf-August Oetker, was a member of Hitler’s Waffen SS. He ran the company, based at that time in northern Germany’s Bielefeld, after WWII ended. he passed away 6 years ago – in 2007.
“My father was a National Socialist,” August Oetker stated in an interview with German newspaper Die Zeit, then added, “He didn’t want to talk about this time. He said, ‘children, leave me in peace’.”
Mr. Oetker revealed that his father’s views had been an influence of the latter’s stepfather, Richard Kaselowsky, who staunchly supported Adolf Hitler and his ideals. Kaselowsky was also the one who ran the company before Oetker’s father took over. The senior Oetker joined the Nazi party in the 1930s.
The chairman had said that he welcomed the publication of the book, Dr Oetker and National Socialism, authored by a German historian which will reveal to the world the connection of his family’s business to the infamous organization. In fact, the company had funded the probe needed for the book.
“I feel now we know the facts, now the fog has lifted,” he pronounced.
A number of German companies have felt the pressure of coming clean with their pasts over the years. This means coming in terms with their connections with the Nazi party and the organizations’ actions during the 1930s up to the 1940s.