How TheWrap's Investigation Led to Bauer Media Shutting A Pro-Nazi Magazine

How TheWrap's Investigation Led to Bauer Media Shutting A Pro-Nazi Magazine

A deeper look into the media group in the wake of a lawsuit by Tom Cruise against the publisher led to the title being shuttered

It isn't often that TheWrap gets to play a role in shutting down a pro-Nazi publication, which happened last week in Germany. After all, we cover Hollywood, not European history.

But we decided to investigate Bauer Media Group early this year in the wake of a lawsuit against the German-owned publisher by Tom Cruise, over their published report that the movie star had neglected his daughter, Suri.

 Also read: Bauer Media to Stop Publishing Pro-Nazi Magazine

Bauer published the story in In Touch magazine, and has other tabloid titles like Life & Style.

As we wrote back in February, Bauer may be the biggest publisher you've never heard of, with 600 print publications and 300 websites in 15 countries, 50 television and radio stations and revenue it estimates at more than $2.6 billion a year.

We got a tip that the privately-held Bauer Media had subsidiary divisions that were sympathetic to the Nazi military past. And moreover that these connections were not deeply hidden.

We assigned Andrew Gumbel, a veteran investigative reporter (and a German speaker), to the story, who through legal filings found that the subsidiary that publishes Der Landser, Pabel Moewig, has been owned by Bauer since the early 1970s.

What is Der Landser? A military adventure magazine that specializes in World War II stories sympathetic to Hitler's armies and that enjoys brisk sales among skinheads and neo-Nazis. The Germany magazine Der Spiegel once described it as “a specialist journal for whitewashing the Wehrmacht.”

Gumbel found several other interesting threads, including that Bauer had in 2012 shut down a far-right wing magazine called Zuerst!, whose publisher, Dieter Munier, has been involved in the German neo-Nazi movement for 40 years.

Also read:  In Touch Tabloid Publisher – Mired in Tom Cruise Lawsuit – Trades in Nazis, Porn and Sometimes Both (Exclusive)

phpFMtRjuAMHe found other magazines, including one called “Geschichte & Wissen” ["Science & Knowledge."]) that has run cover pieces on Hitler seizing power (complete with large color photo of the Fuehrer) and on Hitler's family. Meanwhile another magazine, “Militaer und Geschichte” (The Military and History), has run cover stories on Hermann Goering, the Nazi armed forces chief, and on the Nazi party.

Gumbel also found at least nine German porn websites traceable back to Bauer via online domain-ownership databases.

We were surprised that no English-language publication had ever connected such a major global publisher to these highly questionable publications. Who were they for? What purpose did they serve?

We called Jewish organizations, including the Wiesenthal Center, to inquire if they were aware of Bauer's pro-Nazi ties. They were not.

Also see: From In Touch to ‘The Fuehrer Speaks, the People Listen’ – a Gallery of Bauer's Holdings (Photos)

In August, the non-profit took action, calling on Amazon and Apple to stop selling the title and asking Germany's politicians to see if Der Landser was in violation of the country's laws prohibiting pro-Nazi speech. It turns out they had commissioned a study that found:

“The stories in the Der Landser magazine sanitize the Third Reich by presenting stories of conventional warfare out of context. They methodically reduce the war to stories of German heroes, purposely ignoring the crimes committed by their units as if they are irrelevant. The war they present appears to be an adventure, albeit with some casualties.”

As a result of this exposure, there have been calls in the United Kingdom for Ofcom – the equivalent of the FCC – to deny Bauer's application for a radio license to buy Absolute Radio, a huge radio station, on the grounds that the company is not “fit and proper” to be a broadcaster.

For its part, Bauer maintains that it is halting publication of Der Landser for strategic reasons, not because of any legal issues.

After commissioning their own review by a German lawyer, Bauer said that he came to the conclusion that Der Landser “complies fully with the stringent legislation applicable in Germany and that it neither glorifies nor trivializes National Socialism.”

The Bauer story is only beginning, it does not end with Der Landser. We will continue to follow the progress of a company with a fascinating publishing agenda, and perhaps more secrets in its history.

  • BILL


  • Jim

    Now celebrities call call their photographers, “nazi” hate slurs.

    “Hey commie photographer, did you hear? Hitler's dead!”

  • Hermann Miscaviage

    That will teach Bauer from screwing with Tom Cruise. Thanks, Sharon, for taking Bert Fields’ “tip” that led to the embarrassment for these modern Boys from Brazil. Perhaps all of Bauer's profits should be garnished under the war crimes act and distributed to victims of WWII. At the very least, In Touch and Life & Style should be shut down for habitually publishing lies and celebrity falsehoods. . . . .

  • Kevin Cleary

    Andrew Gumbel is a great journalist and is also the writer of a great book, STEAL THIS VOTE, about America's long history of election fraud.

  • Robin

    Well, hello! Where are the follow-up Bauer/Nazi stories? I have always felt Tom Cruise is a hero, a nice guy and probably as normal as you will find on this planet. In my opinion he is well rid of Katie Holmes – divorcing him on his B'day in part because of Scientology is mean spirited and shows she is likely suffering from some psycho disability. She kicked rare prize in the teeth and could have found some way to reason with Cruise to keep Suri out of the Scientology loop. After all, she was cunning enough to get him to marry her.
    However, back to my point. Cruise seems to take interest in Jewish history via interest in the Holocaust. Kudos that at least he brought up the horror of Bauer publishing (wish he would do more – like fund me, also a reporter – to investigate tho I don't speak German). I am disturbed that the Jewish publications have not responded with any visibility regarding your findings. Subsequent to taking a class in the Torah, I happen to be appalled at this moment of Judaism – feeling it too has become more of a cult.
    My personal feelings however are separate from my disgust over the nightmare of Nazis and the persecution they inflicted. I would love to see more Bauer affiliations come to light.
    So, where's the beef? Hopefully you have not abandoned any investigation.

  • DoTheMathAgain

    I'm so glad we have our Jewish Lords and Masters to protect us from any views they dislike. What better way to win a debate than to silence your opponent? Last time we were so zealous to silence unpopular views, it was The Dark Ages. Of course, you couldn't shut down this same magazine in America, because we have this nasty little thing called “free speech”. It's amazing the iron grip you Zionists have on Germany, but then it IS a country the size of Texas and overrun with millions of illegal Turks…thanks to you Zionists. Great job in protecting your own interests! Why on Earth do you expect praise from US for it?

    In our country, the Jewish royal families may starve dissent, and rail against the disobedient goyim peasants from your Hollywood pedestals, but you can't completely mute us, no matter how much you flood us with movies about the Holocaust while ignoring and denying every other genocide in history, including the ones YOU are responsible for. So just keep pushing through immigration acts to flood us with 3rd Worlders, like you did in 1965, claiming it won't change the racial composition of this country, yet actually turning America into Mexico. Keep stealing everyone's else's land and, while you're at it, keep up your race baiting, from our TV screens, to keep this country divided. Sure, America's system of “free expression” is close to a dictatorship, but apparently not close enough to satisfy our economy destroying Jewish Supremacists, whether they destroy this country from Hollywood, Wall Street, the SPLC or from AIPAC. You've done everything in your power to silence this publication, merely because you don't like the views expressed, so you'll probably also remove this comment. Fascist censorship at it's finest.

    Oh whoops! I'm sorry! What was I saying? The Jews are a perfect people who never hurt a flea throughout history and they also have genetically superior intellect compared to all other people, so I must always listen to them and do their bidding! Heh heh, isn't that what every American is nervously supposed to say? NOW can I write for The Wrap?

  • bean_08

    that is the craziest story.. good job!!!!!