Bonum Certa Men Certa

EPO Looney Tunes - Part 2: The “Difficult Legacy” and Its Dark Historical Shadow

Haar building

Summary: Assuming that he was informed, then it seems fair to say that Battistell’s little “joke” at the expense of the Boards was in very bad taste

IN THE previous part we spoke about the reason for this series and moments ago we explained why we publish Part 2 on the same day. It's becoming more urgent.






Before having a look at the legal team dealing with referral no. G 2/19, it seems like a good idea to revisit the background to what JUVE called Battstelli’s “difficult legacy”.

"At the end of 2017, as part of the “reform” package, the Boards were moved from the EPO main building in Munich to a more remote location in Haar."Readers might remember that the controversial decision to relocate the EPO Boards of Appeal to Haar was the culmination of an ongoing tussle between the former EPO President and the - nominally - independent Boards of Appeal.

As reported by JUVE, strong criticism from the European patent community that the Boards of Appeal were not properly independent or immune from influence by the EPO President, led to a decision in the summer of 2016 to separate the Boards from the EPO in order to improve the “perception of independence”.

At the end of 2017, as part of the “reform” package, the Boards were moved from the EPO main building in Munich to a more remote location in Haar.

In many public commentaries, and in interviews with JUVE, employees of the Boards of Appeal saw the move as a covert disciplinary action by Battistelli.

"The only Council delegate who was prepared to call Battistelli out on his madcap scheme to exile the Boards to Haar was the Netherlands representative, Derk-Jan de Groot, who publicly denounced the plan as “unnecessary” and a waste of money."Although the Association of the Members of the Boards of Appeal (AMBA) managed to rouse itself to make a (rather limp) protest to the Administrative Council, this was (unsurprisingly) ignored.

The only Council delegate who was prepared to call Battistelli out on his madcap scheme to exile the Boards to Haar was the Netherlands representative, Derk-Jan de Groot, who publicly denounced the plan as “unnecessary” and a waste of money.

But de Groot was a voice crying in the wilderness. The rest of Battistelli’s poodles followed their master’s bidding and so the Boards were sent packing to Haar.

The move to Haar has been the butt of many jokes both inside the EPO and outside because the new offices of the Boards of Appeal are situated in Haar-Eglfing which “coincidentally” happens to be the location of the main psychiatric clinic for Munich, the “Isar-Amper-Klinikum München-Ost”, originally known as the “Oberbayerische Heil- und Pflegeanstalt Eglfing-Haar”.

But it’s not all fun and jokes.

There is a darker side to this institution because during the Third Reich it played a key role in the so-called “Aktion T4” program of mass murder by involuntary euthanasia masterminded by leading Nazi officials, including Hitler’s personal physician, Karl Brandt, and the “Chief of the Führer’s Chancellery”, Philipp Bouhler.

Brandt

Bouhler

Karl Brandt and Philip Bouhler, the main architects of “Aktion T4”



Bouhler committed suicide after capture by US forces in May 1945 and Brandt was executed as a convicted war criminal at the Landsberg Penitentiary in 1948.

A key “cog” in the implementation machinery of “Aktion T4” was the Director of the Eglfing-Haar clinic, Hermann Pfannmüller.

Pfannmuller

Hermann Pfannmüller’s Nazi Party membership card



Pfannmüller originally joined the Nazi Party in 1922 but left in 1925. However, after the Nazis came to power in 1933, he decided to rejoin and he became an enthusiastic advocate for the Party’s “eugenics” policies.

From November 1939 onwards, in his capacity as a T4 “assessor”, Pfannmüller processed several thousand registration forms of institutional patients and recommended euthanasia in many cases.

Pfannmuller letter

T4 assessment form dated 11 December 1939 and signed by Pfannmüller.
The red cross is a recommendation that the patient be euthanised.



Some of the first victims of “Aktion T4” in 1940 were patients from Eglfing-Haar.

"According to two nuns who broke their silence in 1993, Sewering was responsible for the deaths of 900 physically and mentally handicapped children by transferring them from Schönbrunn to the “hunger rooms” of the Eglfing-Haar clinic."Pfannmüller also displayed great zeal when it came to “child euthanasia”. In the children's ward of Eglfing-Haar, more than 300 children were killed as of 1940. From 1943 onwards, 440 patients died of starvation or of overdoses of drugs in two of the institution’s “hunger houses” which had been set up by Pfannmüller.

In 1951, Pfannmüller was put on trial for his involvement in “Aktion T4”. He was convicted and sentenced to five years' imprisonment which was reduced to four years on appeal. He died in Munich in 1961.

One Pfannmüller’s medical “collaborators” was the notorious Hans Joachim Sewering (below), who worked as assistant physician at the Schönbrunn Sanitarium, near Dachau, to the north-west of Munich.

Sewering, who lived out his latter years in Dachau, pursued a successful medical career in post-war Germany and rose to become the head of the German Medical Association in 1993.

He even managed to get elected as President of the World Medical Association but a storm of protest forced him to resign before he could take up the position.

According to two nuns who broke their silence in 1993, Sewering was responsible for the deaths of 900 physically and mentally handicapped children by transferring them from Schönbrunn to the “hunger rooms” of the Eglfing-Haar clinic. Sewering denied these allegations. However, he was barred from entering the United States and Jewish organizations called for him to be tried for murder.

Sewering

Hans Joachim Sewering - accused of complicity in the murder of 900 children



Historians estimate the overall death toll of “Aktion T4” to have been around 300,000 and many consider that it was used by the Nazis as a “dry run” for the subsequent implementation of the Holocaust.

The role of Hermann Pfannmüller and the Eglfing-Haar clinic in “Aktion T4” are well known and extensively documented both in Germany and elsewhere.

Was Battistelli aware of these matters when he chose Eglfing-Haar as the new location for the EPO’s Boards of Appeal?

"Historians estimate the overall death toll of “Aktion T4” to have been around 300,000 and many consider that it was used by the Nazis as a “dry run” for the subsequent implementation of the Holocaust."Given that the Sciences Po in Paris has published research about “Aktion T4” which mentions Pfannmüller by name, it would be very surprising indeed if the proud alumnus of that illustrious academy, was not fully au fait with the dark historical legacy of Eglfing-Haar and its well-documented role in the Nazi euthanasia program.

Assuming that he was informed, then it seems fair to say that Battistell’s little “joke” at the expense of the Boards was in very bad taste.

In the next instalment, it’s time to return to the present and to make the acquaintance of the “legal eagles” from the Enlarged Board of Appeal who will be dealing with the G 2/19 referral.

Recent Techrights' Posts

The Persistent Nature of Freedom Isn't About Easy Routes
Resistance to oppression takes effort and sometimes money
 
Gemini Links 22/06/2024: FreeBSD vs XFCE and Gemini Bookmarks Syncing Solution
Links for the day
Links 21/06/2024: Matrimony Perils and US-Sponsored COVID-19 Misinformation
Links for the day
"A coming cybersecurity schism" by Dr. Andy Farnell
new from Dr. Andy Farnell
Links 21/06/2024: Overpopulation, Censorship, and Conflicts
Links for the day
IBM and Subsidiaries Sued for Ageism (Not Just for Racism)
This is already being discussed
UEFI is Against Computer Security, Its True Goal is to Curtail Adoption of GNU/Linux and BSDs on Existing or New PCs
the world is moving away from Windows
[Meme] Chat Control (EU) is All About Social Control
It won't even protect children
EFF Not Only Lobbies for TikTok (CPC) But for All Social Control Media, Irrespective of Known Harms as Explained by the US Government
The EFF's own "free speech" people reject free speech
Microsoft's Search (Bing) Fell From 3.3% to 1% in Turkey Just Since the LLM Hype Began
Bing fell sharply in many other countries
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Thursday, June 20, 2024
IRC logs for Thursday, June 20, 2024
The Real FSF Lost Well Over a Million Dollars Since the Defamation Attacks on Its Founder
2020-2023 income: -$659,756, -$349,927, -$227,857, and -$686,366, respectively
The Fake FSF ('FSF Europe') Connected to Novell Via SUSE, Not Just Via Microsoft (Repeated 'Donations')
'FSF Europe' is an imposter organisation
Just Less Than 3 Hours After Article on Debian Suicide Cluster Debian's Donald Norwood Recycles a Fortnight-Old 'Hit Piece'
The fall of Debian is its attack on its very own volunteers
IPFS censorship, Edward Brocklesby & Debian hacker expulsion
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Links 20/06/2024: Dumbphone Experience and Bad Encryption
Links for the day
Official Project Gemini news feed — Five years of Gemini!
the official statement
Ultimate Judgment: the Debian Suicide Cluster
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 20/06/2024: Bruce Schneier Adds Moderation Policy, FUCKSHITUP Can't Be Trademarked in the US
Links for the day
Mass Layoffs Happening in IBM Subsidiaries, Almost No Media Exists Anymore (to Cover That)
They can drive people out with R.T.O. of lay off in small batches to prevent any media scrutiny
Linux Months-Old News (LWN Uncorrected)
They could at least update the original
Links 20/06/2024: Trying to Maintain Health and the Implosion of LLM Bubble/Hype
Links for the day
Microsoft's Bing Share in Canada Has Only Decreased Since the LLM Hype ("Bing Chat")
According to statCounter
Gemini Links 20/06/2024: Golden Ticket and Looking for Web 1.0 Communities
Links for the day
Not Even TRYING to Compete With Microsoft
CMA (UK) ought to step in and investigate why Canonical (UK) refuses to even compete
Poul-Henning Kamp: Why Freedom in 'FOSS' Matters
Openwashing is more widely recognised as a growing problem
[Meme] EU Chat Control: The Problem is Too Much Privacy???
So what's with GDPR then? The EU is contradicting itself!
Lithuania: GNU/Linux Usage Climbs to Highest Level in Years
consistent abandonment of Microsoft
"Remarkably Little Had Changed."
Black or African American not even mentioned
This Week Fedora Celebrates Diversity, But It is Pushing Proprietary Software and Censorship
IBM openwashing, perception management, and reputation laundering gone awry?
Rumours That Nat Friedman (CEO) Was 'Fired' by GitHub/Microsoft
"Microsoft Refused to Fix Flaw Years Before SolarWinds Hack"
linuxsecurity.com: A Step in a Positive Direction
We hope that Guardian Digital and linuxsecurity.com will rectify the matter and persist with real articles
Links 20/06/2024: Somali Piracy Surges, Juneteenth Discussed
Links for the day
Gemini Links 20/06/2024: Gemini is 5 Today (Still No Gemlog Entry From its Founder)
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, June 19, 2024
IRC logs for Wednesday, June 19, 2024