Aspen Institute Germany

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Group.png Aspen Institute Germany  
(Influence networkWebsiteRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Aspen germany.jpg
FounderShepard Stone
Parent organizationAspen Institute
HeadquartersBerlin, Germany
InterestsNATO, transatlanticism
Sponsored byOpen Society Foundations
Membership• Rüdiger Lentz
• Britt Eckelmann
• Gunther Hellmann
• Peter Lennartz
• Stormy-Annika Mildner
• Ulrich Plett
• Eckart von Klaeden
• Volker Berghahn
• Catherine von Fürstenberg-Dussmann
• Elliot Gerson
• Werner Hein
• Roland Hoffmann-Theinert
• August von Joest
• David Knower
• Friedrich Kuhn
• Helmut Meier
• Fred W. Reinke
• Cecilie Rohwedder
• Kurt Schwarz
• Frank Sportolari
• Till Staffeldt
• Karsten Voigt
• Shepard Stone
• David Anderson (US Ambassador)
• Catherine McArdle Kelleher
• Jeffrey Gedmin
• Nicola Beer
• Renata Jungo Brüngger
• Dileep George
• Frank Kirchner
• Friedrich Merz
• Mathias Döpfner
• Leonard Lauder
• Guido Goldman
• Tyson Barker
• Hans-Dieter Lucas
• Daniel S. Hamilton
• Tina Hassel
• Lisa Witter
• Peter Wittig
• Philip D. Murphy
• Wolfgang Schäuble
• Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff
• Vinton G. Cerf
• Reinhard Bütikofer
• Josef Joffe
• Axel Springer SE
• Daimler AG
• Deutsche Bank AG
• Egon Zehnder International GmbH
• Ernst & Young GmbH
• Rockspire GmbH
• Robert Bosch GmbH
One of the leading U.S. influence networks in Germany, making sure decisions are made behind closed doors.

The Aspen Institute Germany is one of the leading U.S. influence networks in Germany, making sure the central political and economic decisions are made in an elite setting behind closed doors, and in the interest of U.S. corporations.

Aspen tries to promote an "idea-based" leadership, within the frames of transatlanticism and pro-business policies, and politicians are allowed to belong to any party as long as they adhere to these pillars.


Aspen Institute Germany was founded in 1974 by the American citizen Shepard Stone. Stone was the officer who gave licenses to compatible press outlets in the American Occupation Zone in Germany in the decade after WW2, and later manager of the CIA-close Ford Foundation (1952 to 1967) and the even closer Congress for Cultural Freedom.

When Stone retired in 1988, under the leadership of Stone's successors David Anderson and Catherine McArdle Kelleher, the institute dedicated itself to creating a supportive war mood among opinion leaders and the public for the Balkan wars in the 1990s, where Germany under NATO-command participated in its first war of aggression since WW2, in 1998 against Yugoslavia.

In 2001 Jeffrey Gedmin took over the management of the Aspen Institute Germany. Gedmin was more known to the German public for his support for US-Iraq policy and his criticism of Chancellor Gerhard Schröder's foreign policy, which was perceived as too friendly to Russia, including the gas pipeline Nord Stream 1.

In August 2007, deep state functionary Charles King Mallory IV, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs for five years during the War on Terror, took over the management of the institute.

Rüdiger Lentz has been the director since September 2013 and is the first German to hold this position. He declared his goal to be to maintain the bridge to the USA, even in times of foreign policy uncertainty.[1]


Aspen Germany is focused on cooperation with the US and a "free and open society". Like its sister Aspen Institutes in other countries, "free and open society" means a society run by big business. But not all big business is equal. Members of Aspen Germany have lobbied heavily against the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline from Russia to Germany, competing with (much more expensive) liquid natural gas from the US.[2]

Aspen also concentrates on picking and promoting compatible political leaders, within a narrow range of opinions. At Aspen events, ranging from conferences to evening events in an exclusive atmosphere to off-the-record conversations, the chosen can participate in expert conversions on the world’s most pressing issues and, at the same time, "enjoy unique networking opportunities."[3]


In addition to more than 130 individual "friends of the Aspen", the following big corporation as corporate supporters[4]:

  • Axel Springer SE
  • Daimler AG
  • Deutsche Bank AG
  • Egon Zehnder International GmbH
  • Ernst & Young GmbH
  • GÖRG
  • Rockspire GmbH
  • Robert Bosch GmbH

Public institutions that supported the institute during the period according to the 2015/2016 annual report were a. the Federal Foreign Office, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and the United States Embassy in Berlin.


Known members

14 of the 54 of the members already have pages here:

Axel Springer Publishing HouseThe largest publishing house in Europe.
Reinhard BütikoferGerman politician, regular at the Brussels Forum, also attends WEF AGMs
Deutsche BankGerman bank
Mathias DöpfnerCEO of mightiest media group in Germany and Europe, Axel Springer SE, member of the Bilderberg Steering Committee and other transatlantic networks, most notably Atlantik-Brücke. Became billionaire after receiving gift from elderly widow.
Jeffrey GedminUS spooky/hawkish neoconservative academic
Guido Goldman
Josef JoffePublisher-editor of Die Zeit
Eckart von KlaedenTriple Bilderberg German politician
Friedrich MerzGerman transatlantic lobbyist and politician. Blackrock. Former chairman of the influential Atlantik-Brücke.
Phil MurphySuspected deep state functionary who "wasn’t thinking of the Bill of Rights" when he announced "COVID Lockdown" as Governor of New Jersey.
Wolfgang SchäubleGerman Bilderberger, MSC, WEF AGM, lawyer and politician
Shepard StoneNew York Times propagandist and Bilderberg Steering committee member who was Director of International Affairs of the Ford Foundation for 15 years.
Karsten VoigtGerman (SPD) politician.
Peter WittigGerman diplomat who has been UN rep, US and then UK ambassadors


Open Society FoundationsA NGO operating in more countries than McDonald's. It has the tendency to support politicians (at times through astroturfing) and activists that get branded as "extreme left" as its founder is billionaire and bane of the pound George Soros. This polarizing perspective causes the abnormal influence of the OSF to go somewhat unanswered.
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