I know that it sounds fantastic, but this is exactly what IBM did during WWII. Back then, there were only card punch machines and not what we think of today as “real” computers. That didn’t stop IBM though. Apparently neither did the thought of cataloging and exterminating a generous portion of Europe’s population.
IBM, like all corporate giants, was happy for the extra profits and not particularly worried about “those people over there.” This was the same technology that IBM had sold our own census bureau a short time before. It stores information by punching or not punching specific points on the card. It seems innocuous enough but stop and consider this. There is no programming for the machine other than the punch card. The card has to be custom created for each additional thing you want to tabulate. Want to know how many Jews you have? You have make a card for that. Want to pick out the Catholics? You have to make a card for that. Want to know what people you’re going to kill this week? You have to make a card for that. Want to know what the results were of your human medical experiments? You have to make a card for that. Want to know how many people you gassed last week? You have to make a card for that. Want to know how many gold teeth you collected and what they’re worth? You have to make a card for that.
Guess who supplied the cards? You got it – IBM or as I’ve decided to call them IDM. Now, IBM claims that they lost control of their German divisions during WWII, but I’m not really buying that. THey were supplying cards and machines to the Nazi’s from as far away as Brazil. Furthermore, anytime Germany invaded a new country, IBM was quick to scurry in after them to set up new factories. On September 13, 1939, the world’s newspapers reported the “Rape of Poland” – the bloody and brutal take over of Poland by Germany and the announcement by the Nazis that millions of Jews, Gypsies, and Catholics were to be “candidates for physical extermination”. Four days earlier, IBM cut a deal with the Nazis to make a bunch of custom punch cards and sell them some more machines. Think that IBM backed out of the deal when they found out what it was for? Hell, no. They asked if they could sell the Nazis some more stuff. To add insult to injury, the factory that IBM opened in Poland was directly across the street from the one of the largest Jewish “containment areas” in all of Poland.
When the Nazis rolled in to France a year later, did IBM hesitate to sell the Nazis more stuff with which to pick out their targets for “physical extermination”. Hell, no. They promptly moved into France and built two new factories to supply them. And they continued to follow this pattern of expansion into newly occupied Nazi territories. The fact of the matter is that IBM designed, sold, and consulted on the very systems that ran the backbone of the Nazi extermination machine from slave labor in the prison camps to who was being tortured to who was being used in the horrific Nazi medical experiments to keeping the trains running to Auschwitz running on time – IBM designed, printed, and sold the punch cards to the Nazis, collaborating with the Nazi hierarchy to design and implement elaborate custom solutions for genocide.
Worse still is the fact that IBM only leased the machines in order to maintain the lucrative service contracts on them. The machines were serviced by IBM employees who went to the site of the machine to perform the service. One of these machines as located at the concentration camp in Dachau. How can you walk through that place and still want to keep helping the Nazis? Just how nonexistent is your conscience that you continue help them automate and speed up the utter annihilation of millions of people? What possessed you think that you could profit from all that death? I know that I’ll never buy another anything that says IBM again.
For that reason, I’m renaming IBM from International Business Machines to IDM – International Death Machines.