The last patrol of the U-977 started on 2 May 1945 when she was ordered to sail from Kristiansand, Norway for Portsmouth, England. This was a near suicide mission: Portsmouth was heavily defended and U-Boats were suffering catastrophic casualties. On May 5 all U-Boats were ordered to stand down from offensive operations and surrender to the Allies. The U-977's commander, Heinz Schäffer, did not relish surrendering to the Allies directly. Schäffer decided Argentina would be more amenable, landed 16 sailors wanting to stay in Europe on Holsenoy Island and set course for Argentina.
"Regenbogen" [Rainbow] was the code name for the planned mass scuttling of the German U-boat fleet, to avoid surrender, at the end of World War II.
At the beginning of May 1945 Nazi Germany was collapsing under the Allied onslaught.
The Soviets had captured Berlin, and on 30 April Hitler had committed suicide. He had appointed Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz as Head of State and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces. US Forces from the west and Soviet forces from the east had already met at Torgau, cutting the Reich in two, while in the north 21st Army Group was poised to capture Hamburg and the other German ports.
The state of the German navy, the Kriegsmarine, was no better. Of its capital ships only 'Prinz Eugen' survived, sheltering at Copenhagen, and only the U-Boat Arm was capable of continuing the fight.
'Prinz Eugen' was an Admiral Hipper-class heavy cruiser, the third member of the class of five vessels. She served
with the Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II. The ship was laid down in April 1936, launched in
August 1938, and entered service after the outbreak of war, in August 1940.
She was named after Prince Eugene of Savoy, an 18th-century Austrian general.
'Prinz Eugen' saw action during Operation Rheinübung, an attempted breakout into the Atlantic Ocean with the
battleship 'Bismarck in May 1941. The two ships destroyed the British battlecruiser 'Hood' and moderately damaged
the battleship 'Prince of Wales' in the Battle of the Denmark Strait. 'Prinz Eugen' was detached from 'Bismarck' during
the operation to raid Allied merchant shipping, but this was cut short due to engine troubles. After putting into occupied France and undergoing repairs, the ship participated in Operation Cerberus, a daring daylight dash through the English Channel back to Germany. In February 1942, 'Prinz Eugen' was deployed to Norway, although her time stationed there was curtailed when she was torpedoed by the British submarine 'Trident' days after arriving in Norwegian waters. The torpedo severely damaged the ship's stern, which necessitated repairs in Germany.
Upon returning to active service, the ship spent several months training officer cadets in the Baltic.
As the Soviet Army pushed the Wehrmacht back on the Eastern Front, however, it became necessary to reactivate
'Prinz' Eugen as a gunnery support vessel; on 1 October 1943, the ship was reassigned to combat duty.
In June 1944, 'Prinz Eugen', the heavy cruiser 'Lützow', and the 6th Destroyer Flotilla formed the Second Task Force, later renamed Task Force Thiele after its commander, Vizeadmiral August Thiele. 'Prinz Eugen' was at this time under the command of KzS Hans-Jürgen Reinicke; throughout June she steamed in the eastern Baltic, northwest of the island of Utö as a show of force during the German withdrawal from Finland. On 1920 August, the ship steamed into the
Gulf of Riga and bombarded Tukums. Four destroyers and two torpedo boats supported the action, along with
Prinz Eugen's Ar 196 floatplanes; the cruiser fired a total of 265 shells from her main battery,
and its. bombardment was instrumental in the successful repulse of the Soviet attack.
In early September, 'Prinz Eugen' supported a failed attempt to seize the fortress island of Hogland. The ship then returned to Gotenhafen, before escorting a convoy of ships evacuating German soldiers from Finland. The convoy, consisting of six freighters, sailed on 15 September from the Gulf of Bothnia, with the entire Second Task Force
escorting it. Swedish aircraft and destroyers shadowed the convoy, but did not intervene. The following month,
'Prinz Eugen' returned to gunfire support duties. On 11 and 12 October, she fired in support of German troops in Memel.Over the first two days, the ship fired some 700 rounds of ammunition from her main battery.
She returned on the 14th and 15th, after having restocked her main battery ammunition, to fire another 370 rounds.
While on the return voyage to Gotenhafen on 15 October, Prinz Eugen inadvertently rammed the light cruiser 'Leipzig' amidships north of Hela. The cause of the collision was heavy fog. The light cruiser was nearly cut in half, and the two ships remained wedged together for fourteen hours. 'Prinz Eugen' was taken to Gotenhafen, where repairs were
effected with a month. Sea trials commenced on 14 November. On 2021 November, the ship supported
German troops on the Sworbe Peninsula by firing around 500 rounds of main battery ammunition.
Four torpedo boatsT13, T16, T19, and T21joined the operation.
'Prinz Eugen' then returned to Gotenhafen to resupply and have her worn-out gun barrels re-bored.
The cruiser was ready for action by mid-January 1945, when she was sent to bombard Soviet forces in Samland.
The ship fired 871 rounds of ammunition at the Soviets advancing on the German bridgehead at Cranz held by the
XXVIII Corps, which was protecting Königsberg. She was supported in this operation by the destroyer Z25 and torpedo boat T33. At that point, 'Prinz Eugen' had expended her main battery ammunition, and critical munition shortages forced the ship to remain in port until 10 March, when she bombarded Soviet forces around Gotenhafen, Danzig, and Hela. During these operations, she fired a total of 2,025 shells from her 20.3 cm guns and another 2,446 rounds from her
10.5 cm guns. The old battleship 'Schlesien' also provided gunfire support, as did 'Lützow' after 25 March.
The ships were commanded by Vizeadmiral Bernhard Rogge.
The following month, on 8 April, Prinz Eugen and Lützow steamed to Swinemünde. On 13 April, 34 Lancaster bombers attacked the two ships while in port. Thick cloud cover forced the British to abort the mission and return two days later. On the second attack, they succeeded in sinking 'Lützow' with a single Tallboy bomb hit. 'Prinz Eugen' then departed Swinemünde for Copenhagen, arriving on 20 April. Once there, she was decommissioned on 7 May and turned over to Royal Navy control the following day. For his leadership of 'Prinz Eugen' in the final year of the war,
Reinicke was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross on 21 April 1945.
The Kriegsmarine had approximately 470 U-Boats remaining. Some 170 of these were operational U-Boats [Front boats] based mainly in occupied Norway, and another 200 home-based boats in various stages of building, commissioning and working up; these were mainly in the north German ports and on the Baltic.
As head of the Kriegsmarine, and as commander of the U-Boat arm, Dönitz was keen that his U-Boat force should not be surrendered. However, as the new German leader, he was keen to extricate Germany from the war and, if possible, avoid Allied, particularly Soviet, retribution. To that end he had opened negotiations with the western Allies, through Field Marshal Montgomery, commander of Allied 21 Army Group, in North Germany.
As the Allies closed in on the North German ports the Kriegsmarine started to destroy what was left to prevent its capture, while all serviceable boats were ordered to bases in Norway. During May a final massacre of U-Boats fleeing to Norway took place; 23 U-Boats were destroyed or damaged beyond repair in transit in the first week of May.
Against this backdrop, Dönitz and the U-Boat arm made plans for a mass scuttle of his U-Boats, to be carried out on receiving the code-word "Regenbogen".
In the early hours of 5 May, the Regenbogen order was given, only to be countermanded 8 minutes later, to avoid jeopardizing the surrender negotiations, and later that day all operational U-Boats were ordered to cease hostilities.
On 8 May, Germany surrendered unconditionally; the remaining naval units, including the surviving U-Boats, surrendered to Allied forces. At least 150 U-Boats were surrendered to the Allied navies, either at sea or at their operational bases. 52 boats were surrendered at sea, either on patrol or in transit, and 98 in port, mostly in Norway and at bases in Germany, Denmark and France. Four U-Boats and their crews fled to neutral ports rather than do this; two [U-1277 and U-963] to Portugal and two [U-530 and U-977] to Argentina.
The U-963 left Norway at the end of April of 1945, to lay mines in the English Channel. The crew members tried to still believe in a miracle, in the face of Allied advances, but, when they emerged in the Irish Sea, at the beginning of May, they had corroboration that the conflict was over. However, they refused the orders of surrender. After some argument, the idea of a scuttle in a neutral country like Portugal arose, where, it was expected, there would be no reprisals, was accepted.
They travelled on the surface during the night, and submerged during the day, for avoid unpleasant meetings. It took the U-963 eight days for the 4,500 km voyage to Nazaré, Portugal, where on 20 May 1945, it was scuttled. The entire crew survived.
In February 1945, because the U1277, a Type VIIC/41, was one of the few remaining U-boats still active, she was transferred to Bergen (Norway), home of the 11th flotilla. This sub was now a front boat. Her first and only patrol was to sail across the Iceland Strait into the Atlantic and position herself on the entrance of the English Channel, and she left port on 22 April 1945, under Captain-Lieutenant Peter-Ehrenreich Stever.
The U-Boat was scuttled on 3 June 1945 at Capo de Mundo near Oporto, Portugal, by order of her Commander, after sailing without course through the Atlantic for a period of one month (the Armistice was signed on 8 May 1945, one year after her launch into the water and almost one month before she was sunk). The U-1277 either did not receive Dönitz's surrender order, or chose to ignore it.
All 47 crew disembarked safely from their sinking boat in rubber dinghies and made their way ashore, landing at Angeiras north of Oporto. There they were interned in the "Castelo de Sao Jose da Foz". A few days later they were handed over to a British warship in Lisbon and put in a POW camp for 3 years, before they could return to Germany.
After a passage of 66 days, the U-977 arrived off the Mar del Plata on 17 August 1945 and promptly surrendered to the Argentine Navy. The submarine and crew were turned over to the US Navy in November. The captain and crew of the U-977 were interrogated by the US Navy.
The U-530 sailed from Kristiansand, Norway on 4 March 1945 with orders to patrol off Halifax, Canada. arrived off Halifax and attacked ships there between 4 - 7 May, but scored no hits.
When the captain, Otto Wermuth, learned of the German surrender orders (first broadcast May 5), Wermuth choose to surrender to Argentina. The U-530 jettisoned its remaining torpedoes, its deck gun and secret papers and steered a course for Argentina, arriving at the Mar del Plata on 10 July where it surrendered.
The surrender of the U-530 excited a good deal of comment at the time with Latin America newspapers claiming that it had transported Hitler and Eva Braun to Argentina. With its missing papers and armaments, the U-530 was good conspiracy fodder but both the Argentine Navy and the US Navy interrogated the captain and crew of the U-530 and found nothing exceptional. "Wikipedia" claims that the logbooks of the U-530 were destroyed but Clay Blair in Hitler's "U-Boat Wars" notes they were recovered and examined after the surrender of the U-530 by the US and Argentine navies.
The unexpected arrival of the U-530 started many rumors
When U-530 was seen close to by the Argentine surveyors on 10 July 1945 this is what confronted them:
The U-Boat looked as though it had survived some dreadful maritime calamity. The hull was devoid of paintwork and very rusted, the deck and structures had been damaged by the use of a ferocious corrosive cleaning material, the upper casing appeared to have been the seat of a great fire. The turret was split apart, the interior of the boat mouldy and the Diesels had been damaged by sabotage.
Neither the US nor the Argentine declassified documents provide any explanation for all the damage except for the Diesels [caused by the crew].
A great quantity of material had been ditched. By Wermuth's own admission under interrogation, the following had been thrown overboard
- The war diary and other secret books
- five unused torpedoes plus the gyro and warhead of a sixth in which the battery had exploded and jammed in a tube.
- the torpedo aiming equipment
- all ammunition for the 20mm and 37mm flak guns
- parts of the 37mm flak gun
- the dynamite scuttling charges
- manometer gauges
- 3 Metox anti-radars
- 1 Hohentwiel radar and antenna
Most of the crew, including the commander, lacked a Soldbuch and other identity documents.
Wermuth told the Argentine naval interrogators that he saw the Punta Mogotes light at Mar del Plata at 0300 hrs on 9 July 1945 from 18 miles offshore and went down the coast to Miramar arriving there at 0600 hrs on 9 July.
At nightfall on 9 July I surfaced and made my way eastwards back along the coast keeping three miles offshore until reaching Mar del Plata submarine base where I drifted until the early hours".
The US Naval Attaché did not want this jaunt to Miramar published and so falsified his translation from the Spanish to read:
"Wermuth told the Argentines of first sighting the Mogotes light at 0300 hrs on 10 July, thought about going to Miramar to surrender and then he submerged and waited for dawn to view the port of Mar del Plata".
Why did Wermuth go to Miramar?
At the end of 1943, Generalmajor Friedrich Wolf, naval attaché at the German Embassy, had arranged with Gustav Eickenberg, a German-Bolivian tin magnate who had a ranch at Mar del Sur, to use it as an Etappendienst station for disembarkations from U-Boats. The best spot for the arrival of a U-Boat was equidistant between the lighthouses at Miramar and Necochea, where a path led up to Eickenbergs ranch.
The probability is that Wermuth got off the boat at Miramar. Here the containers of cash, jewels and bons were unloaded and he took with him the U-530 log, charts and books for the conference with German Naval Intelligence officers of the Etappendienst.
In addition, although well stocked for provisions, the crew was starving and scurvy.
The U-530's Captain, Oberleutnant Otto Wermuth did not explain why it had taken him more than two months to reach Mar del Plata. Brazilian Admiral Jorge Dodsworth Martins said he believed that the U-530 could have sunk the cruiser 'Bahia', while Brazilian Admiral Dudal Teixeira believed that the U-530 had come from Japan. An Argentine reporter claimed that he had seen a Buenos Aires provincial police report to the effect that a strange submarine had surfaced off the lower Argentine coast and had landed a high-ranking officer and a civilian who might have been Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun in disguise. U-977 was also accused of sinking the 'Bahia'; an inquiry eventually found that she had been sunk due to a gunnery accident.
Doubts about Hitler's death were revived in London, because of discrepancies in the disclosures of Captain Wermuth, and the presence of a crew of 54, instead of a normal complement of 28 men, including another Captain, suggests that a second U-Boat was also employed was also employed in the escape, after which the second U-Boat was scuttled.
Admiral Eberhard Godt, Operations Chief of the German Undersea Fleet, denied that the U-530 left Kiel on 3 March for Norway with Hitler and Eva Braun aboard. He described the report that the U-Boat put the pair ashore in Argentina as a "wild rumor".
The Argentine Naval Ministry issued an official communique in which they stated that the U-530 was not responsible for the sinking of the 'Bahia'; no Nazi leader or high military officers were aboard; and the U-530 had landed no one on the coast of Argentina before surrendering.
Tales of the voyage of the U-530 took an even more fantastic turn decades later:
"Wilhelm Bernhardt," co-author of a preposterous novel, "Adolf Hitler and the Secrets of the Holy Lance" , self-described as a member of the U-530 crew, wrote that before arriving in Argentina U-530 carried "six bronze lead-lined boxes" containing "selected treasures" of the Third Reich and placed them in an ice cave in Antarctica.
To believe that Hitler somehow escaped Berlin and made his way to Norway and took passage on the U-530 or the U-977, one has to explain how Hitler managed to bolt almost 2 months before his suicide with nobody noticing to make the sailing of the U-530 on 4 March, or before the capture of the Reich Chancellery to make the sailing of the U-977 on 2 May. Neither are remotely plausible, but that never stopped a good conspiracy theory.
Will the Real Adolf Hitler Please Die?
Joseph P. Farrell
3 February 2011
I just finished reading an interesting book by Dr. Hans Baumann, called "Hitler's Fate". This short book was well worth the read, for in it, Baumann takes the reader through a careful review of all the published works recounting the standard line of Hitler's and Eva Braun's suicides in Berlin on 30 April 1945, and shows the inherent contradictions in the story, a story whose details depend entirely on the testimony of a few of the witnesses, who even in the standard version of history, did not even really witness the event, but only its alleged aftermath.
By pouring over the various studies, including, significantly, the Soviet books and statements on the whole episode, Baumann comes to a novel hypothesis: that sometime on 22 April 1945, Adolf Hitler and his dog, Blondi, disappeared while on a walk in the Reichschancellery gardens, and his double, with another German shepherd dog, were replaced for him. Later, the Göbbels family with a young woman in tow, arrives, the woman to act as a double for Eva Braun.
Baumann presents fascinating evidence from the standard accounts documenting a complete change between the pre-April 22nd and post-April 22nd Hitlers, including statements from US intelligence sources of the period also declaring quite unambiguously that after 22 April, there is no good evidence that Hitler was even in the Bunker.
Army News (Darwin, NT)
16 April 1945
LONDON: There is strong evidence in reports reaching authoritative quarters in London that the Nazi Party is overthrowing Hitler, who may be superseded by Himmler, says the diplomatic correspondent of the "Press Association". A serious split among the Nazi leaders appears to be going on. A correspondent of the "Exchange Telegraph Agency" says that foreign observers who have been in direct contact with leading members of the Nazi hierarchy are convinced that Hitler is a dying man.
A report, which came through Switzerland, says that Hitler was assassinated on the night of 21 April at his Berlin headquarters. That night, the report says, he presided over a war council. Hitler insisted on a pian to continue resistance in the Bavarian Redoubt, but only Göbbels supported him. A few hours before a second meeting was to have been held there was a terrific explosion in Hitler's private rooms, and he and all his guards were killed, the report adds.
The German Legation In Berne [Switzerland] has had no news from Germany to confirm officially Hitler's death.
The situation became so desperate that on 22 April 1945, Hitler sent Christa Schröder, Johanna Wolf, Arthur Bormann, Dr. Theodor Morell, Admiral Karl-Jesco von Puttkamer and Dr. Hugo Blaschke, away. Schröder later recalled: "He received us in his room looking tired, pale and listless: 'Over the last four days the situation has changed to such an extent that I find myself forced to disperse my staff. As you are the longest serving, you will go first. In an hour a car leaves for Munich'.
On 23 April 1945 German radio broadcasts a report that Adolf Hitler was in the "main fighting line" in Berlin and would "remain there despite all rumors". Allied circles doubted the report and suspected that Hitler was in Bavaria organizing a last stand, and on the next day the Royal Air Force conducted its last significant mission of the war with a raid against Hitler's retreat at Berchtesgaden.
Hitler Still in Berlin
The Courier-Mail [Brisbane, Qld]
24 April 1945
LONDON [Special and A.A.P.] German Radio announced that Hitler is in Berlin.
There are conflicting reports of the whereabouts of other leading Nazis, but they seem to be deserting the battle zones for selected "hideouts". Reports say they have fled either north to the Baltic coast or south to the Bavarian stronghold, or are hiding in the Harz Mountains [Central Germany] which the Americans have encircled.
Göbbels told Berliners that he and his wife and children were in Berlin to stay. Luxemburg radio and Stockholm rumours say they have fled north to Mecklenburg. Berne [Switzwerland] reports, however, says the wives of Göbbels, Göring, and Himmler, up till two days ago, were living In a luxury villa on the shores of Lake Constance. Suddenly at midnight on Saturday they left In two big Mercedes cars for the Huns' Bavarian stronghold. Ribbontrop's wife reached Switzerland from Germany in a row boat, but was put back across the frontier.
American officers expect to make a big catch of high Nazis in "this little redoubt," says James Wellard, "London Sunday Express" correspondent at Blankenburg, in the Harz Mountains. There are well-founded reports, he says, that Frau Göbbels and her children, Kesselrlng [Chief of the High Command], and Speer [Armaments Minister] are hidden in caves in this little pocket, which the US First and Ninth armies are mopping up. There is vague news that Himmler, Göring. and even Hitler, are in these parts, Wellard reports.
Göring cached priceless loot in a mineshaft in one of his steel works in the Harz Mountains. Americans are now blasting the cement of the shaft entrance.
Says Hitler in Berlin
Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate [NSW]
24 April 1945
LONDON. A.A.P.: The Hamburg Radio commentator [Dr. Kriegk] stated:
"From the appeal by Dr. Göbbels we know that the Führer is in Berlin. The Führer has decided to remain at this hour in the Reich capital. We announce it to the German people and tell it to the entire world.
'With every hour that passes we are becoming surer of our selves, but the struggle is by no means over yet. A great effort will still be needed".
Luxemburg Radio states that Dr. Göbbels and his family have left the capital for Mecklenburg, despite his promise to stay in Berlin.
Where is Hitler? Where is Göbbels?
The Newcastle Sun [NSW]
24 April 1945
Hitler has taken over command of Berlin's defences, Göbbels, Berlin's Gauleiter and commander of the Volksturm, announced. Hitler is now in Berlin.
Göbbels has been recognised among Nazi leaders fleeing into Austria, Swiss observers announced.The report is false, a "Werewolf" station stated - Göbbels is in Berlin.
The Swiss observers returning from Austria said they identified Göbbels when he descended from his car to stretch his legs while his chauffeur repaired a blow-out. They claimed that his recognition was doubly sure because of his club foot. Others whom they claim to have recognised are Frau Göring and her daughter and Frau Himmler and her daughter.
Meanwhile, Hitler, without saying where he is, has sent a message to Mussolini.
"The struggle for our very existence has reached its climax".
"In a spirit of tenacious defence the German people all are animated with a kindred spirit will yet halt the onslaught and alter the course of the war by their unparalleled heroism at a moment when the fate of Europe is being decided for centuries".
The Courier-Mail [Brisbane, Qld]
26 April 1945
LONDON, April 25 [A.A.P.]: Moscow Radio scotches the rumour that Hitler is in the thick of the battle for Berlin.
"He hasn't been seen in Berlin since the seat of Government was transferred to the south," said Moscow.
"He keeps on changing his abode and goes from place to place in an armoured train".
The German Radio claims that Hitler is still in Berlin.
Hero Legend Around Hitler Planned?
Northern Star [Lismore, NSW]
28 April 1945
LONDON - Stockholm messages say a carefully coached former grocer who resembles Hitler has been sent to Berlin in the Führer's place to die on the barricades. The "Free German Press Service" said that he would act as Hitler's trump card, creating a hero legend around the Führer's death while Hitler himself goes underground. It is said that the stand-in is August Wilhelm Bartholdv, a one-time grocer in Plauen, who has been specially trained to speak like Hitler in a long association with the Führer at Berchtesgaden.
The German Foreign Minister' [von Ribbentrop] has issued a secret order to German officials abroad, it is intended as a private morale builder for German diplomats and agents in neutral countries, but a copy has been obtained by the "Daily Mail" Geneva correspondent. Ribbentrop said: "Have courage even if as now seems probable German loses the war.
"Hitler will never fall into enemy hands. He will remain in the midst of the millions of new soldiers who will grow up everywhere under new signs and in new uniforms.
"If every German remembers his oath and is responsible for one of the enemy the Reich will re-live. Germany will never capitulate".
The "Daily Express" correspondent in Moscow says stories that, Hitler is in Berlin, which are constantly plugged by Hamburg radio, have few believers in Moscow. Few think Hitler would give the Russians an opportunity to take him. Two other theories widely held In Moscow are that he is either in his southern Redoubt or already has skipped out, probably to Norway, where further means for a later escape by submarine is open tp him.
Front line reports from Berlin say there is now no escape for the Nazis. If Hitler is in the city the Russians will get him dead or alive, and as the German radio throughout has reiterated that Hitler is inside the doomed capital, his days may well be numbered. One German broadcast said Hitler was fighting to the last with his forces, while the German-controlled "Scandinavian Telegraph Bureau" said Hitler daily has been receiving his commanders in his headquarters.
On 1 May 1945, the Associated Press gave American readers some reassuring news:
"The German radio reported Tuesday night that Adolf Hitler is dead
At the Führers headquarters it is reported that our Führer, Adolf Hitler, has fallen this afternoon in his command post at the Reich Chancellery, fighting up to his last breath against Bolshevism, said the announcement".
"Whether Adolf Hitler actually died at his command post in Berlin today, as the German radio said, the world may not know with assurance for some timeperhaps never.
"He may have been dead for days or weeks; he may still be living and this announcement only a ruse to help his escape plans.
"However, the Hamburg radio announcement could mean that this is the official end of Adolf Hitler, as far as what authority remains in Germany is concerned.
"Whether he is living or dead, it could mean that the Nazi hierarchy has decided that the myth of Hitler dead now suits its purpose better than the myth of Hitler living and leading the last forlorn hope in Berlin.
In Baumann's scenario, one of two likely escape routes was possible, by helicopter [yes the Germans had helicopters]to Magdeburg, and thence by aircraft [a Ju 290], to Barcelona in Franco's Spain, and thence probably to the environs of San Carlos de Bariloche in Argentina, or by some route to Hamburg, where he and dutiful wife Eva make their way by U-Boat eventually to the same destination
Luft-Transportstaffel 40 based at Ainring in April 1945, had at least three Fl-282 "Kolibri" and also three Focke Achgelis Fa-223 "Drache" at its disposal. during the last few months of the war and this unit made many flights into and out of besieged and encircled towns transporting dispatches, mail, and key personnel. It was possibly one of this unit's Fl-282s that flew Gauleiter Karl Hanke out of besieged Breslau just before the capture of that city on 5 May 1945.
Heinz J. Nowarra, stated that during the April-May 1945, battle for Berlin that Russian fighters planes shot down several German Flettner Fl-282 Kolibri helicopters, which the Germans were using as artillery spotters.
-- "German Helicopters 1928 -- 1945", Schiffer Military History, West Chester, PA, 1990.
Several is unlikely.....
Hans-Ulrich Rudel and Hanna Reitsch practiced through November and December 1944 making rescue flights to the Tiergarten, and all of February 1945 practising low flying over Berlin at night with a Fa-223, but by 29 April 1945, the helicopter at Richlin kept for this task was destroyed by air attacks.
"Hitler's long-distance escape plane crashed soon after leaving the ground on its first test flight, says the Stockholm "Afton Tidningen".
"The plane was reported to be a rebuilt Junkers 290, armor-plated, with seating for 22. It was said to be able to fly non-stop 3750 miles".
-- Australian Associated Press, 10 April 1945
This scenario would fit in well with the overall scenario of Bormann and Müller's escapes that I outlined in "Nazi International". But what was most intriguing for me was Baumann's hypothesis that the architect and malevolent mastermind of all this obfuscation by way of doubles carefully substituted in the Bunker was none other than Heinrich "Gestapo" Müller himself, a point that I also argued in "Nazi International".
Whether or not one adopts or agrees with Baumann's scenario, at the very minimum one will come away from this book, as I did, even more convinced of the gaping flaws of what has been assumed as "history" of the final days of Adolf Hitler.
Suddenly, the long blue prow of a lone submarine shoots above the water. It has been almost four months since World War ll in Europe has ceased. This is German U-Boat 977 badly in need of some fresh air. For it has been traveling under water for 66 days. The U-Boat would come up only at night to charge the electric batteries. The Nazi Swastika is clearly visible on both sides of the conning tower. The skipper, Lieutenant Heinz Schäffer is afraid his sub might be mistaken for a Japanese sub and be sunk. For Lt. Schäffer is on the most top secret mission of his entire career.
When Germany surrendered unconditionally, some warships and submarines were still at sea. A few of these would seek refuge in a neutral country. The time is 0400 O'clock (4:00 am) in the early morning of 17 August 1945. [Germany had surrendered 7 May 1945].The place is the South Atlantic Ocean, just off the shore of the city of Buenos Aires. Buenos Aires is the capital of Argentina, the second largest country in South America. U-977 is watching for a signal to come ashore, three green lights. As the signal is given, the sub moves up the Rio de la Plata (the mouth of a large river) to dock in Buenos Aires. As U-977 approaches the pier, Lt. Heinz Schäffer ponders over the identity of his three passengers. This mission has been so top secret that no one knows who they are. A middle aged man and a woman with a small girl emerge topside. But they are bundled up in trench coats and wrapped in several scarves. A full squad of Argentine Army air Force Police and a full squad of Secret State Police [Gestapo] await the trio's arrival. They are quickly loaded into an armored car and whisked away. With sirens whaling, their escorts of four motorcycles and six squad cars soon reach the Army Air Force Base. On the main runway a Tri-motor Junkers Transport JU52/3 airplane is warming up. This plane has the logo of the Argentine Air Force, but it is one of Germany's finest.
After a short two-hour journey that covers around four hundred miles, they land on a secluded airstrip. This is located on the edge of the jungle near Laguna Mar Chiquita, a large lagoon. This is in the middle of the Cordoba region of Argentina. Here is the location of a plantation fortress that covers a thousand square miles. It is enclosed by a ten foot high chain link fence with four strands of barbed wire at the top. Guard towers are located every four to five miles apart. Armed guards with guard dogs also patrol the entire area. A thousand flood lights shine brightly during the night. Large "Keep Out - No Trespassing" signs are posted in three languages; German, English and Spanish. Finally, two small airplanes circle overhead day and night. There is a large sign over the main front gate that reads, "Neu Kehlstein". The German name for the Eagle's Nest is Kehlsteinhaus, which means house on Kehlstein mountain.
Not too far from Munich, Germany rise the Bavarian Alps, a very beautiful group of mountains. Far up on the slope is a village called Obersalzberg. This is where Hitler had his home as well as Bunkers and air raid shelters. And perched above this near the summit, was his lair or retreat, called "Kehlstein" [Eagle's Nest] - This is where Eva Braun lived with Hitler for many years.
The identity of the three passengers: Adolf Hitler, his wife, Eva Braun-Hitler and their young daughter Uschi Hitler.
Hitler and Eva Braun with the daughter of Oberleutnant
Erwin and Herta [Ostermeyer] Schneider - Ursula ["Uschi"]
Eva and Herta had been friends from childhood, and even after Herta married, she and her children spent a great deal of time with Eva, living with her at the Berghof, because Herta's husband was away in military service. Eva often played with "Uschi", who was one of Adolf Hitler's most welcomed guests.
So many photos were taken of Eva and Hitler with Uschi, that many people in the post-war years thought this was their child.
Germany has surrendered unconditionally but Adolf Hitler had not. He was now here to keep his promise for the Third Reich would last at least a thousand years!
Now many top scientists, historians, and forensic experts have never believed that Hitler and his wife, Eva Braun, committed suicide on 30 April 1945. Supposedly Hitler shot himself in the head and Eva used a cyanide poison capsule. Then their bodies were supposedly doused with gasoline and set on fire. The bodies were burned so severely it was impossible to identify them. There was no blood left to be tested and no finger-prints to compare. By 1 May, Russian troops had captured most of Berlin. Josef Stalin, the secretary general, top leader of Russia, wanted positive proof that Hitler was dead. He sent a search team led by Lieutenant Colonel Ivan Klimenko to find the truth. A water soaked body who resembled Hitler was found in an old oak water tank. Although this man had not been touched by fire, he was positively identified as Adolf Hitler. He was put on display in the Reich Chancellery main hall. Soon another body was found in a wooden box just outside the Bunker door. He looked enough like Hitler to be his twin brother. So he was positively identified as Adolf Hitler. [This body had not been touched by fire either]. Two days later, two bodies were dug up out of a small bomb crater, a man and a woman. They were sent to the 496th field hospital in Berlin-Buch. On 8 May, V-E Day, both bodies were given a preliminary forensic autopsy. Now we know once and for all this is positively Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun Hitler! Their dental records have been compared and that proves who they really are, case closed.
However, this did not prove anything. The woman identified as Eva Braun Hitler had not died of cyanide poison but from a shrapnel wound in her chest. And we know Adolf Hitler had several doubles. At least one double had his dental records and teeth altered to look exactly like Hitler. All of the men and women that surrounded Hitler were completely fanatical in their loyalty and devotion to him. They all swore an oath, not to the German military or to the German Fatherland, but to Hitler himself. Most of them were captured by the Russians, a few by England, and a few by the United States. They were interrogated, tortured, and sent to prison. That is why so many different stories exist concerning the life or death of Hitler and his wife.
As early as September of 1943, "Operation Land of Fire" was put into motion. It was spearheaded by Hitler's private secretary, Martin Bormann, who handled Hitler's finances. He began to smuggle money, gold and art treasures into Argentina by submarine. This is where the finances came from to construct "Neu Kehlstein" the new Eagle's Nest. By the end of World War ll, the government of Argentina had issued 2,003 passports for high Nazi war criminals! Soon reports came pouring in that Hitler was indeed alive and well. He was seen as a headwaiter in a cafe in Grenoble, France. Next he was a fisherman in the Aran Islands, off the coast of Ireland. Then a croupier in a casino in Evian then a monk in the monastery in St. Gallen, Switzerland. Next holed up in a moated castle in Westphalia, Germany. And all the while Josef Stalin was insisting that Hitler and Eva were living either in Spain or Argentina.
Adolf Hitler was a very complex individual with a photographic memory. Many people believe he was insane, while others believe he was a genius. He certainly was a gifted speaker, able to hold mass audiences spellbound. Hitler believed that he was the twentieth century representative of the medieval Teutonic Knights driving back the Slavs from German territory. He promised to completely crush the Jewish and communist backed world conspiracy. Eva Braun met Hitler in 1933, and became his mistress for life finally marrying him on 29 April 1945.
"Time Magazine" selected Hitler as 'The Man of The Year' in 1938. Samuel Church, U.S. Industrialist, offered a one million dollar reward for his capture in 1940.
In 1986 a daily newspaper in Buenos Aires, Argentina, printed a story. A reporter had just interviewed Adolf Hitler, he is alive and in perfect health, and only 96 years old.
Is Hitler Still Alive?
The Braidwood Dispatch and Mining Journal [NSW]
10 October 1947
This article was specially written for the "Flak," March 1947 edition, by a well-known journalist who recently toured Europe and South America for Australian newspapers.
There is a 50-50 chance that Hitler is still alive. That is no wild guess. It is not an irresponsible statement more fitting for sensation-loving readers of the American "yellow press" than thinking ex-servicemen. It is the authoritative opinion of the Intelligence Section of the US. Army, of many British investigators, and most definitely of the Russians, who are positively convinced that Hitler and his Deputy, Martin Bormann, are alive and working for the rebirth of Nazism.
U.S. intelligence officers are working on a theory that Hitler and his wife, Eva Braun, are hiding with Bormann in the Bavarian Alps, directing the resurgence of Nazi activities that is now troubling Allied occupation of Germany. Recently, the Allies issued a statement stressing the seriousness of these activities. This theory is based on the testimony of an S.S. prisoner of the U.S. Army, Captain Hans Wolff, found In the Dachau Concentration Camp In 1945. Wolff has testified he saw Hitler and his wife leave Berlin by plane on 29 or 30 April, with Hans Baur as pilot.
During the last days of the war, Hans Baur was with Hitler in the Führerbunker. Baur had devised a plan to allow Hitler to escape from the Battle of Berlin; a Fieseler Fi 156 Storch, a common German liaison airplane which required very short landing and take-off distances, was held on standby which could take off from an improvised airstrip in the Tiergarten, near the Brandenburg Gate. However, Hitler refused to leave Berlin. On 26 April 1945, the improvised landing strip was used by Hanna Reitsch to fly in Colonel-General Robert Ritter von Greim, appointed by Hitler as head of the Luftwaffe after Hermann Göring's dismissal. During the evening of 29/30 April, Reitsch flew von Greim out on the same road-strip and Hitler suggested to Baur that he evacuate himself and Martin Bormann the same way, since Bormann had to get out of Berlin safely with some important papers that Hitler had placed in his care.
After Hitler's suicide, Baur found the improvised road-strip too pot-holed for use and overrun by the Soviet 3rd Shock Army .
Baur never made any attempt to fly Bormann to Dönitz, although the traditional history suggests the topic was discussed by Göbbels and Baur on 1 May, long after Bormann apparently was gone and a flight out of Berlin was no longer possible.
James P O'Donnell in his book "The Berlin Bunker" cited Albert Speer saying that Baur had serious plans to fly Hitler out on 23, 28 and 29 April 1945. He also quoted Baur himself saying "right up to the last day I could have flown the Führer anywhere in the world".
Hans Baur, in "Ich flog Mächtige der Welt, [K W Schütz Verlag, Preussisch-Oldendorf, 1973], wrote:
"Early on 30 April 1945 I was appointed Hitler's Luftwaffe adjutant after von Below left the Reich Chancellery...I was summoned on several occasions to the Führerbunker...in his living room on the last occasion Hitler took both my hands and said, "Baur, I have to take my leave of you" In a state of great excitement I said to him, "You are not going to end it?" Hitler: "We have gone as far as we can. My generals have betrayed me and sold me out, my soldiers do not want to carry on and I cannot take any more!" I argued with Hitler that aircraft were available to fly him to Argentina, Japan or one of the Sheikdoms, where he could vanish.....Hitler then gave me his reasons why he wished to stay in Berlin and die there...."
This statement seems to suggest that a refueling network existed at that time enabling long-distance Luftwaffe aircraft to fly virtually wherever they wanted. Under the exigencies of Bormann's plan "Operation Feuerland" one suspects that the opportunity would have been taken to shift out more cargo abroad as soon as the Führer was beyond using the aircraft in question.
Aide Who Saw Hitler Die
The Canberra Times [ACT]
18 October 1955
S.S. General Hans Baur, Hitler's personal pilot, told reporters "I saw Hitler shoot himself".
Baur, one of the few surviving Hitler aides who remained with the Führer in the Bunker to the bitter end, on 30 April 1945, arrived in West Berlin on 7 October among a group of prisoners of war released by Russia.
Russia and Britain, on the other hand, believe that Hitler is in either Argentine or Spain, with Argentina the favourite. Investigators of these Allies don't base their opinion on wild-cat rumours or the gossip of newspaper writers. They are building up a wall of fact to back their beliefs. Unlike Britain and the U.S., Russia has never believed that it was either Hitler or Eva Braun found burned beyond recognition in the ruins of the Reichschancellery. Since the night in April, 1945, when Berlin fell, Soviet investigators have been unobtrusively searching the world for Hitler, and significantly concentrating on Argentina. Moscow will not comment officially, but makes no secret unofficially that Hitler will be found alive and very active, in South America.
In the face of facts being lined up, British opinion is lining up alongside the Soviet. Here are a few of the concrete facts not rumours that the Allies have added to their file on the probable hiding place of Hitler.
1. No satisfactory identification of the charred bodies found in the Reichschancellery has been possible. With the vast amount of information on Hitler from medical and dental experts, it should have been easy to identify even his badly-charred body.
Is Hitler dead?
More than seven years have now passed without any trace of his survival, despite the most lurid and exciting rumours. lt may well be doubted whether a man in his exhausted state of health would in fact have lived long if he had escaped from the Bunker.
True, the evidence is only circumstantialthe accounts, most carefully investigated by H. R. Trevor-Roper, of those who took part in the final scene at the Bunker, Hitler's statement of intention in his Will, and so on.
Nobody can prove that it was Hitler's body which was carried up the stairs into the garden, for the head remained covered, nor have the ashes and fragments of bone, which even the fiercest fire could be expected to leave, ever been discovered.
But these are less serious gaps in the story than may appear at first sight. lt was perfectly natural to cover Hitler's head, since he had shot himself through the mouth. The clothes on the body were certainly his. As for the ashes, it has been suggested that they may have been collected and placed in a casket to be handed to the Hitler Youth commander, who was present, as sacred relics for the next generation.
But the simplest explanation may still be the correct one. It is not known how thorough a search was made by the Russians, and it is perfectly possible that the remains of Hitler and his wife became mixed up with those of the other bodies which were found there, especially as the garden remained under continuous bombardment until the Russians captured the Chancellery on 2 May.
This remains hypothesis, but when it is added to the psychological probabilitywhich all the evidence confirms that this was the end Hitler would choose, and the state of his health at the time, it is a fairly convincing argument. In any case, seven years is a long time. If Hitler has not so far appeared to take advantage of the confusion and divisions which he left as his legacy to Europe, it is a reasonable assumption that he is in fact dead. Whether a Hitler legend may not yet appear to prove more troublesome than ever Hitler alive would be, is another question, to which the answer of the future is still concealed.
- Alan Bullock "Hitler: A Study in Tyranny" 1952
2. Elaborate plans were prepared to evacuate Hitler from Berlin at the last minute, and there is no proof that they were not put into operation.
Hitler Planning Escape
Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW)
17 November 1943
LONDON - Hitler and other German leaders are reported to be planning to escape to Japan by U-Boat and continue the war from there in the event of a German collapse, states a Swedish correspondent quoting the Swiss newspaper "Die Tat".
It is reported that Hitler has a specially built submarine capable of voyaging 20,000 miles without refueling.
Hiller Has Escape Plane Ready
Examiner [Launceston, Tas]
24 July 1944
NEW YORK - The National Broadcasting Corporation yesterday picked up a clandestine German radio station reporting that Hitler has a four engined transport plane capable of flying 10,000 miles standing by at a German secret air base. The radio said the same plane flew non-stop to Japan last year.
Another story is that he intends to fly to South America in the long-range plane
On the contrary, there are eye witnesses who say that Hitler was taken out of Berlin in an aeroplane.
3. Germany had prepared plans for a trans-Atlantic aeroplane, and there is testimony that a prototype was built by the Junkers company. It was not found by the Allies.
The Junkers Ju 390 was a German aircraft intended to be used as a heavy transport, maritime patrol aircraft, and long-range bomber, a long-range derivative of the Ju 290. It was one of the aircraft designs submitted for the abortive Amerika Bomber project, along with the Messerschmitt Me 264, the Focke-Wulf Ta 400, and by February 1943, the Heinkel He 277.
Two prototypes were created by attaching an extra pair of inner-wing segments onto the wings of basic Ju 90 and Ju 290 airframes, and adding new sections to lengthen the fuselages.
The first prototype, the V1, was modified from the Ju 90 V6 airframe from July 1940 to April 1941, then to the Luftwaffe from April 1941 to April 1942, then returned to Junkers and used for Ju 390 V1 construction). It made its maiden flight on 20 October 1943 and performed well, resulting in an order for 26 aircraft, to be designated Ju 390 A-1.
The second prototype, the V2, was longer than the V1 because it was constructed from a Ju 290 airframe.
The maritime reconnaissance and long-range bomber versions were to be designated the Ju 390 B and Ju 390 C, respectively.
The V1 was constructed and largely assembled at Junkers' plant at Dessau, Germany, and the first test flight took place on 20 October 1943. Its performance was satisfactory enough that the Air Ministry ordered 26 in addition to the two prototypes. None of these were actually built by the time that the project was cancelled (along with Ju 290 production) on 20 June 1944, and all work ceased in September 1944.
On 26 November 1943, the Ju 390 V1 with many other new aircraft and prototypes was shown to Adolf Hitler at Insterburg, East Prussia.
According to former Junkers test pilot Hans-Joachim Pancherz' logbook, the Ju 390 V1 was brought to Prague immediately after it had been displayed at Insterburg, and while there took part in a number of test flights, which continued until March 1944, including tests of inflight refueling.
The Ju 390 V1 was returned to Dessau in November 1944, where it was stripped of parts and finally destroyed in late April 1945 as the US Army approached.
Different sources present different accounts of the history of the Ju 390 V2.
Historians Karl Kössler and Günther Ott state that the Ju 390 V2 was completed during June 1944, with flight tests beginning at the end of September 1944.
Historians Manfred Griehl and Joachim Dressel state that the Ju 390 V2 was assembled in Bernburg and first flown in October 1943. This would place its construction and first flight at nearly the same time as that of the Ju 390 V1. They further said that it was configured for a maritime reconnaissance role. Its fuselage had been extended by 2.5 m [8.2 ft], and it was said to be equipped with FuG 200 Hohentwiel ASV [Air to Surface Vessel] radar and defensive armament consisting of five 20 mm MG 151/20 cannon. Historian Green claims different armament, specifically four 20 mm MG 151/20s and three 13 mm [.51 in] MG 131 machine guns.
Ju-390 project pilot Hauptmann Hans Pancherz claimed after the war that only one Ju-390 was ever flown. At a hearing before British authorities on 26 September 1945 Professor Heinrich Hertel, chief designer and technical director of Junkers Aircraft & Motor Works also asserted the Ju-390 V2 had never been completed.
German author Friedrich Georg claimed in his book that Test pilot Oberleutnant Joachim Eisermann recorded in his logbook that he flew the V2 prototype [RC+DA] on 9 February 1945 at Rechlin air base. The log is said to have recorded a handling flight lasting 50 minutes and composed of circuits around Rechlin, while a second 20-minute flight was used to ferry the prototype to Lärz.
A Ju 390 is claimed by some to have made a test flight from Germany to Cape Town in early 1944. The sole source for the story is a speculative article which appeared in the "Daily Telegraph" in 1969 titled 'Lone Bomber Raid on New York Planned by Hitler', in which Hans Pancherz reportedly claimed to have made the flight in question. Author James P. Duffy has carried out extensive research into this claim, which has proved fruitless. Authors Kössler and Ott make no mention of this claim either, despite having themselves interviewed Pancherz.
The first public mention of an alleged flight of a Ju 390 to North America appeared in a letter published in the November 1955 issue of the British magazine "RAF Flying Review", of which aviation writer William Green was an editor. The magazine's editors were skeptical of the claim, which asserted that two Ju 390s had made the flight, and that it included a one-hour stay over New York City. In March 1956, the "Review" published a letter from an RAF officer which claimed to clarify the account. According to Green's reporting, in June 1944, Allied Intelligence had learned from prisoner interrogations that a Ju 390 had been delivered in January 1944 to FAGr 5 [Fernaufklärungsgruppe 5], based at Mont-de-Marsan near Bordeaux, and that it had completed a 32-hour reconnaissance flight to within 19 km [12 mi] of the U.S. coast, north of New York City. This was rejected just after the war by British authorities. Aviation historian Dr. Kenneth P. Werrell states that the story of the flight originated in two British intelligence reports from August 1944 which were based in part on the interrogation of prisoners, and titled 'General Report on Aircraft Engines and Aircraft Equipment'; the reports claimed that the Ju 390 had taken photographs of the coast of Long Island. But no photos or other evidence for the existence of such photos has ever been found.
The claimed flight was mentioned in many books following the "RAF Flying Review" account, including Green's own respected "Warplanes of the Second World War"  and "Warplanes of the Third Reich"  but without ever citing reliable sources. Further authors then cited Green's books as their source for the claimed flight. Green himself told Kenneth P. Werrell many years later that he no longer placed much credence in the flight.
Werrell later examined the available data regarding the Ju 390's range and concluded that although a great circle round trip from France to St. Johns, Newfoundland was possible, adding another 3,830 km [2,380 mi] for a round trip from St. Johns to Long Island made the flight "most unlikely".
Authors Karl Kössler and Günther Ott, in their book "Die großen Dessauer: Junkers Ju 89, 90, 290, 390. Die Geschichte einer Flugzeugfamilie" [The Big Dessauers... History of an Aircraft Family], also examined the claimed flight, and debunked the flight north of New York. Assuming there was only one such aircraft in existence, Kössler and Ott note it was nowhere near France at the time when the flight was supposed to have taken place. According to Hans Pancherz' logbook, the Ju 390 V1 was brought to Prague on 26 November 1943. While there, it took part in test flights which continued until late March 1944.
They also assert that the Ju 390 V1 prototype was unlikely to have been capable of taking off with the fuel load necessary for a flight of such duration due to strength concerns over its modified structure; it would have required a takeoff weight of 65 tonnes (72 tons), while the maximum takeoff weight during its trials had been 34 tonnes [38 tons]. Another explanation for this is that prototypes are never flown at maximum gross weight for their maiden flight until testing can determine the aircraft's handling characteristics. According to Kössler and Ott, the Ju 390 V2 could not have made the US flight either, since they indicate that it was not completed before September/October 1944.
In his book, "The Bunker", author James P. O'Donnell mentions a flight to Japan. O'Donnell claimed that Albert Speer, in an early 1970s telephone interview, stated that there had been a secret Ju 390 flight to Japan "late in the war". The flight, by a Luftwaffe test pilot, had supposedly been nonstop via the polar route. O'Donnell is the sole source for the story. Speer never mentioned the story in any of his writings or other interviews. Kössler and Ott make no mention of the claim.
4. Becase of Allied pressure, the Argentine Government was forced to arrest a certain German, Frau Maximiliana Oschatz. In the winter of 1942, Frau Oschatz built a boarding house at San Clemente del Tuyu, a boarding house that took no guests and accommodated only Frau Oschatz and her gardener. They both had a peculiar hobby: Come hail or snow, fog or thunderstorm, they rode miles along the beaches every day. One day Frau Oschatz told an antl-Peronist that her husband was a U-Boat captain. On 17 July 1945, six weeks after the German surrender, two U-Boats were seen to surface not far from Frau Oschatz's seaside boarding house. Although it was mid-winter and winter is cold in the Argentine the German woman was on the beach waiting for them. Allied protests at the visit of these U-Boats forced the Argentine Government to arrest Frau Oschatz.
5. There is plenty of proof that Nazi officers and men are still training and wearing their uniforms in Argentina. One of their strongholds is the estate of Kurt Wasserman, head of the country's largest newsprint importing concern, who was threatened with black listing by the Allies. Wasserman admits his German birth, but at the outbreak of war claimed he was a democrat and anti-Nazi. In 1942, however, special investigators found Nazis in uniform drilling behind the high-fenced grounds of the Wasserman estate. Most Germans who landed in Argentine at that time, ultimately, were traced to the estate. Wassermau sold his newsprint to the pro-Nazi "El Pampero," which was edited by the nationalist leader, and alleged Nazi, Enriqu P. Oses. It is claimed that S.S. leaders and senior officers of the Nazi party are now sheltering at the Wasserman estate.
6. Investigators have also collected testimony from an officer of the Argentlne State Fleet that under Government orders, his ship stood by and refuelled an outsize Nazi submarine a few weeks after Germany's collapse.
7. They have also discovered that Basillo Pertine, former chairman of the German Siemens Schuckert Argetina Company, and a pro-Nazi fanatic, received money from Germany on 3 June 1945, after Germany fell. The following day, at a dinner celebrating the rise of the Peron Government In Argentine, Pertine said: "I am glad to announce that our friends are safe at last".
8. There are dozens of reports about the construction of industrial plants In remote parts of the Argentine, all of which are capable of munition production. Construction has been carried out by German engineers. They have the appearance of steel mills, but Allied investigators claim they could turn out robot bombs. These reports are tied to the fact that shortly before the surrender the Allies captured a U-Boat loaded with Uranium ore, and believed to be heading for the Argentine.
9. To cap all other reports, the Allies have signed statements by influential Argentinians, that they have seen a blond-haired, clean shaven man in the cafes of Buenos Aires, whose eyes are obviously those of Adolf Hitler.
They suggest the search should centre in the hilly area about 450 miles north-north-west of Buenos Aires, and in the province of Patagonia, where Germans hold about 270,000 square miles of ranches, bought with Nazi gold.
Argentina Harbours a Ghost
The Swan Express [Midland Junction, WA]
26 November 1953
Translated from an Italian Paper by Louis De Waar
Of late years there has been a spate of book, written by Hitler's lieutenants and associate, who escaped conviction under the anti-Nazi laws and see a chance of cashing in on their exclusive knowledge of the "Great Dictator". But to the people of Argentina these accounts would smack of Anthony Hope and his imaginary kingdoms and the story of the last hours in the Bunker in Berlin as a piece from Wagner. For they don't believe Hitler is dead. They are sure that he is alive and in their country. Did not Hitler say: "They must not take me alive". Naively, these words have always been taken to mean that Hitler intended as a last resort to suicide. But did he?
Let us delve into a few of the stories which provide a basis for the Argentinans' belief that their country harbours a ghost the ghost of a maniac who destroyed his country, ignorantly as any corporal given command of a Division of men.
In the second half of 1945, the legend goes, two U-Boats arrived during the early hours of one morning at the popular beach of the Mar del Plata, 240 miles south of Buenos Aires. Spectators affirm that large numbers of people were disembarked from the submarines on to the beach. Most of the men wore greatcoats tvpical of those of field marshalls and highly-placed staff officers of the German army. One of these men had a bad limp and an arm in a sling. By his bearing and stature he bore a strong resemblance to Herr Hitler just as a woman in the party resembled his wife, Eva Braun. The mysterious inaividuals were driven away at high speed in the waiting cars, the dispersed crowds came together again at the beach, curiosity unsatisfied and the newspapers were silent on the subject.
But that is not all. A young police agent, off duty, remained near the beach and got a close view of the embarkees. As the cars glided away he saw Hitler and Eva Braun plainly and went off, hot foot, to report the matter to his superiors. They in turn passed on the intelligence to higher levels. A few hours afterwards, the young msm called from his bed, was taken to police headquarters a nd charged with drunkedness while on duty. Later in the day he was dismissed and sent to his home under close arrest. The following morning, he was taken to home for incurable drunkards and is there to this day, practically buried alive.
Everyone places Hitlers home in the extreme southern portion of ArgentinaPatagonia. This region is for the greater part deserted. battered by wind and rain, a melancholy land of sand, rock, and scrub, black lava and volcanic ash. Only on the eastern side is it irrigated and cultivated. In its desolate areas, here and there, one finds small flocks of sheep, remnants of a former German colony.
For an ex-Führer of "Ein Reich und Ein Volk," Patagonia must be an attractive refuge.
According to those who tell the stories, travellers in Patagonia have brought back tales of a vast Estancia enclosed by an electric fence. Behind the fence are ferocious houndsan additional precaution against intruders.
Once a month a truck leaves the Estancia and proceeds some miles to the nearest village. Here, a dozen blond giants descend, swagger up and down the single street making purchases and without answering any auestions, return in their truck at high speed to the Estancia. Then for another mont nobody comes or go«s from the Estancia and the scene belongs to the dogs and their eternal barking. The men, a fanatical guard of honour, have sworn to defend the Führer till the day he dies.
The stories about Hitler have permeated all Strata of Argentine society and who will guarantee their authenticity or deny them? Everywhere they are repeated and embellished. In that strange Land of the New World, controlled by the iron discipline of the Peron regime, supposed repository of atomic secrets as yet unknown to us, one is disposed to believe that not only does Hitler live but that he is a strong influence in the affairs of the country. For did not Peron start on his reactionary adventures shortly after the supposed arrival of the German leader and step by step, copy the very methods by which the Nazis gained control in Germany?
First he attacked the great labour unions, not by outright destruction but bv infiltration by agents until their submission, was complete. Next victim was the Press but here, sure of his power, he summarily shut down the greatest liberal newspaper of the Southern continent. This brought all the rest of the newspapers into line.
Countless persons claim that thev have seen Hitler and that he does not now confine himself to the isolation of his Patagonian ranch.
During a visit to the Mar del Plata, a friend of mine was invited to dinner at the home of a woman, the bearer of an old and honoured name and related to the most influential families of the pre-Peron days. During my friend's visit, she took him to another Estancia the owner of which bore one of those strange combinations of names very common in Argentina. He was called Richardo Kelly. Coming back in the car they could see, in the distance, the curve of the coast made by the Mar del Plata where it flowed into the Atlantic Ocean. Kelly, who was with the party, asked, "Do you see that long beach down there? That is where the U-Boats arrived bearing Hitler and his party.' My friend looked his disbelief -he had not then been very long in Argentina- but his hostess said: "I think it is quite true. It is said that he is in Patagonia.'
"One of Mussolini's sons flew down to lunch at the Plaza Grill at Buenos Aires with Fritz Mandl," Kelly told them. "Don't worry the Nazi party isn't dead yet. There is a secret Danish society here which meets regularly and is coming out more and more in the open as an advocate of Nazi policy. Who would you think was behind it? Couldn't it be Hitler himself?"
Do you remember that rumour that Charlie Chaplin had been seen in Patagonia?" his cousin asked. " 'Yes and it was proved that Chaplin had never been near the place," Kelly said. "It was Hitler all right!"
Chaplins meretricious and in fact genuinely, historically damaging "The Great Dictator" is a film I had taken for granted the conventional wisdom and knee-jerk approbation. And forgotten it. But its "courage" is one of those myths that really needs re-examining because it persists to this day. The myth that "The Great Dictator" was a bold challenge to
Hitler or that it somehow damaged his cause. Quite the opposite.
It may be too late, but I feel an obligation to set the record straight. Im recalling now how shocked I was when, after being invited to "present" a showing of it at the Harvard Film Archives, I actually watched it for the first time in years.
It was shocking on two levels. First, the fact that in his alleged anti-Hitler satire, who does Chaplin blame for the hostility his Hitler character has for the Jews? Jewish bankers! Jewish bankers turned down the Great Dictator and its all about getting even with those Jews. The Jews misfortune was their own fault, in effect. Thats the explanation Chaplins film
left in its audiences mind probably the first impression much of America had. In addition, the impression that Hitler was a harmless joke, nothing to worry about. Thats what he told America at that crucial moment in October 1940 when the film was released. People seem to forget this when they get all misty-eyed about how great "The Great Dictator" is.
Its fascinating that the film-buff community is so blinkered by apolitical estheticism they never speak of this when
heaping unwarranted praise on this mendacious film. Or do they just not want us to notice the "Jewish banker"
moment so we can appreciate the great genius without reservation?
But the real damage of this alleged satire was done at the time of its release, in its successful trivialization of Hitler. Chaplin trivialized his "Great Dictator" by revealing what a sentimental, foolish softy he was, gracefully juggling a globe balloon as if his desire to rule the world were a beautiful delusion. Nothing to be seriously alarmed by. Not a threat that required resistance. Just the Little Tramp being a little bit mean to the Jews.
The film was released at a time when the appeasers and America Firsters, many of them anti-Semitic and pro-fascist, were trying to keep the United States out of the struggle against Hitler. Another fact overlooked by the Chaplin groupies: The film won an award from the right-wing, racist, pro-appeasement 'Daughters of the American Revolution', because
of Chaplins mistakenly celebrated "pro-peace" speech, a speech, which was really at that time, in that context, an argument not for peace but instead for not fighting Hitler. It called on the soldiers and workers of the world not to
take up arms against anyone (including Hitler), which was why it was also celebrated by the Communist Party, then promoting the odious Hitler-Stalin pact, which also argued against the anti-fascist struggle (until the Soviet Union was attacked, of course). Hitler was murdering people, and Chaplin was telling the world not to resist,
the Stalinist line at the time: he was not a serious threat.
- Ron Rosenbaum, "Explaining Hitler" -
A little while after the Führer came up again as a topic of conversation in another place. My friend was staying at another Estancia, one of the most famous in the world. After a stroll round the grounds surrounding the house and a look over the private golf course, my friend went in for his first dinner in the luxurious house. He found his hostess very distressed. Her mother, an old lady of seventy odd, had gone for a drive in the car and had not returned after several hours To make matters worse a hail storm was sweeping in from the coast. The guests were on the point of making a search when the door opened and the old lady came in, her face reddened with the icy wind , and her clothes soaked. She was quite at ease nevertheless. Her daughter urged her to have a bath and go to bed but her mother was stubborn. "I'll have a Scotch and soda And tell you a story first," she replied, "Then I'll be a good child and whatever you want".
Despite protests, the old lady remained and drank her whisky. Then she turned to my friend and s aid: "You're a stranger and probably don't believe that Hitler is living in Argentina as do the rest us". "Please, please, Mamma," expostulated her daughter. "Not now! He will think you're crazy" She turned appealingly to my friend. "I'm not crazy," her mother insisted, "The old have been known to be as wise as the young! This afternoon I was driving round the headland when the car stopped and I 1 couldn't make it work. I began to walk back and was quite enjoying the play of light and shadow as the clouds scudded over the face of the sun when suddenly a car came towards me. Then I saw him. He was sitting behind the driver". "Who was?" demanded her son-in-law. " 'Hitler, you silly," the old lady answered. "If it wasn't he I am not standing here this minute! And I did not imagine it, either. He was never further from my thoughts. Well, I have finished my Scotch, recounted my story so now I'll have my bath".
Argentina to open its files on Nazis
The Canberra Times
5 February 1992
BUENOS AIRES: After decades of secrecy, the Government has displayed some of its files on Nazis who fled to Argentina after World War II, and declared that all would be made public soon.
"This is a debt Argentina is paying to humanity," President Carlos Menem told a news conference on Monday attended by Cabinet ministers, foreign ambassadors, Nazi hunters and reporters from around the world. Experts said the documents might shed light on some of history's dark corners, particularly on how former top Nazis vanished from Europe as the Third Reich collapsed and showed up months and years later in this South American nation.
The files are under lock and key of the Federal Police, the Immigration Department and other agencies. Mr Menem's decree removed them from protection by an official secrets Act and ordered their collection by the National Archives. They are to be turned over within 30 days and will be opened for public inspection as soon as they are put on microfilm.
Adolf Eichmann, the architect of Hitler's attempted extermination of Europe's Jews, found refuge here. So did Josef Mengele, the "Angel of Death" at the Auschwitz concentration camp. There have been rumours of sightings of Martin Bormann, Hitler's top deputy, who many experts think died in Berlin in 194S.
"There are all types of stories about [escapes] with the co-operation of the Vatican and the International Red Cross," said Shimon Samuels of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre for Holocaust studies. "I think it's very important to prove what happened".
Eichmann was kidnapped by Israeli commandos in I960, taken to Jerusalem for trial, convicted and hanged. Mengele's family say he drowned in Brazil in 1979.
Mengele may be alive, say Israeli Police
The Canberra Times [ACT]
21 June 1991
JERUSALEM: Josef Mengele, the infamous Nazi doctor at the Auschwitz concentration camp, may still be alive, despite claims that he drowned in Brazil in 1979, a never-published Israeli police report says. The report points to discrepancies in the medical findings that led American, German and Brazilian forensic experts to conclude jointly that the skeleton exhumed from a Brazilian cemetery was "within a reasonable sci entific certainty" that of Mengele.
It was submitted to the Israeli Justice and Police Ministries in 1986, but was never published. An English version of the report was distributed this week to journalists by CANDLES (Children of Auschwitz Nazi Deadly Lab Experiment Survivors), which campaigns to continue the hunt for Mengele.
The 60-page report questioned several forensic findings from the bones at Embu cemetery. It said the skull was too small, one leg was shorter than the other, and the remains contained no trace of Mengele's boyhood bone disease. It also challenged the dental records used to identify the skeleton. The report pointed to testimony that suggested Mengele's family believed he was still alive after the alleged 1979 drowning. It cited a greeting Mengele's daughter-in-law wrote congratulating Mengele on his 68th birthday, even though he was supposed to have drowned one month before the birthday. It also mentioned the testimony of Dr Hans Münch, an Auschwitz staff doctor, that some time between 1980 and 1983 after the alleged drowning Mengele's step son asked Münch what Mengele's' chances were of acquittal if he stood trial.
Mengele, known as "the Angel of Death", is accused of sending about 400,000 people to the gas chambers and of conducting medical experiments on camp inmates. He fled to South America in 1949, and lived in Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil. In 1985 it was announced that Mengele had drowned six years previously, and his friends directed police to a grave marked "Wolfgang Gerhard" in the Embu cemetery near Sao Paulo.
The police report was written by Menacbem Russak, formerly Israel's chief police investigator of war crimes. In it, he says enough inconsistencies exist to "suggest an assumption that the body discovered ... is not that of Josef Mengele". The US Office of Special Investigations also has not published the findings, according to Ephraim Zuroff, head of the Israeli branch of the Nazi-hunting Wiesenthal Centre. Mr ZurofT said the Russak report raised questions. But he said he did not think it undermined the forensic evidence. Mr Russak confirmed the report's authenticity, but declined to elaborate on it. Miriam Zeiger, a survivor of Mengele's experiments and head of the Israeli branch of CANDLES, said the report was handed to her twin sister by an anonymous person at a Jerusalem conference earlier this year. She said the Israeli Justice Minister, Dan Meridor, met the group last month and rejected a request to publish the Russak report. The German Government has sought to clear up the controversy by asking Professor Alec Jeffreys to use the genetic fingerprinting technique he pioneered at Leicester University in England.
Josef Schwammberger, a commandant at labour camps in Poland, was extradited in 1990 and is now on trial in Stuttgart, Germany, for war crimes. Schwammberger, now 79, lived in Argentina under his own name. So did Mengele, who obtained a driver's licence and an identity card from police, the magazine "Somos" reported over the weekend, after apparently having had at least limited access to the Federal Police files.
Aides said Mr Menem was moved to act by requests from the World Jewish Congress and unfavourable publicity in newspapers for not doing so. The Interior Minister, Jose Luis Manzano, insisted that those who came did so on Red Cross passports and not as has been reported on Argentine passports issued by Peron. Samuels also discounted reports, never confirmed, that the Nazis smuggled tonnes of gold and a hoards of art.
It has always been maintained that Hitler died in the Berlin Reichs Chancellery Bunker on 30 April 1945. However an American War Correspondent James P ODonnell made the effort to interview all the available Bunker survivors in 1969. Having pieced together their stories he declared not one single eyewitness account of Hitlers last days agreed with any other. It was as if a group of people had been told what to say and all got their story wrong.
A summary of the secretly tape recorded conversations of Major General Walther Dornberger during his captivity by the British in early August 1945, used in evidence at Nuremberg to try Dornberger for war crimes. Dornberger disclosed his own role in secret surrender talks at Lisbon in 1944 with two American representatives of General Electric. The United States seems to have been promised exclusive custody of Germanys wartime patents, surrender of Germanys senior scientists and engineers in return for the discreet survival of key people.
There are suggestions that as late as 21 March 1945 Hitler was fully briefed on the secret Operation Sunrise surrender talks in Italy with SS Lt General Karl Wolff. Hitler approved of these talks.
Officially Operation Sunrise was said to have taken place without Hitlers knowledge.
Hans Kammler was also reported by Albert Speer to be trying to work out his own deal to sell secrets to the Allies to save himself.
In secretly recorded discussions by nuclear scientists at Farm Hall after the war, in particular Dr Paul Harteck, it is reported that the US threatened Hitler in July 1944 with a nuclear attack on Dresden within six weeks unless Hitler abandoned Germanys nuclear weapons project and commenced peace talks. It is known from the table talks with Romanias Marshal Antonescu on 5 August 1944, that Antonescu was briefed about Germanys development of a powerful Uranium bomb.
Hitler knew Antonescu permitted a political opposition and this opposition was in regular contact with London. Secret peace feelers were exchanged via Antonescu by radio with London in August 1944. Antonsecu was captured tried and hung by the Soviets in September 1944, so whatever he knew, the Soviets also knew which may explain the dropping of the Iron Curtain immediately after the war finished.
How did Hitler escape?
One suggestion made was in the mysterious U-Boat, U-534 which departed Kiel in May 1945 bound for Argentina. It transpires after the raising of U-534 from the seabed that it was actually bound for Japan via a secret refueling base in the Lena Delta in Siberia.
- S. Burbridge -
U-534 was a German type IXC/40 long-range ocean going submarine [U-Boat] commanded by Kapitänleutnant Herbert Nollau. She was mainly used as a weapons testing platform, and until the late summer of 1944 was also used as a weather ship in the North Atlantic, and during her service she sank no other ships. On 28 October 1944, she arrived in Kiel where she was transferred to the 33rd U-boat Flotilla and underwent an extensive refit in Stettin, which put her out of duty until 1 May 1945.
On 3 May 1945 approaching Allied Forces made it necessary to flee her homeland, and she slid silently out of the submarine pens and made her way towards Kristiansand in Norway. She was the last U-Boat to leave Germany. Apparently she had been specially provisioned and armed in the bombproof pens at Kiel weeks before.
She headed northwards when in the early hours of 5 May, a partial surrender was ordered by Admiral Dönitz of German forces in Denmark, Germany and other areas went into effect. The U-534 was informed by the harbour master at Oresund Elsinore in Denmark, that the ceasefire was in effect south of the 56th parallel. Captain Nollau refused to surrender and decided to defend the boat and its cargo.
Allied ships headed to Norway where, the British feared, the Germans would regroup and continue to fight. That is why in early May 1945 they began a large-scale campaign against submarines.
On 5 May 1945, the U-534 was 2 nautical miles [3.7 km] north of the 56th parallel, and Nollau decided to form a convoy with two Type XXI U-Boats, the U-3523 and U-3503, and continue sailing north on the surface of the Kattegat sea in an area too shallow for crash diving, when two British RAF Liberator aircraft attacked [G/86 George from Tain and E/547 Edward from Leuchars]. The crew managed to shoot one bomber down, with boat's anti-aircraft gun, and nine depth charges from the bombing runs missed, but then the boat received a direct hit by a depth charge from G/86. The U-534 began to take on water as a result of the damage to her aft section by the engine rooms, and sank 20 kilometres northeast of the Danish island of Anholt. The shot-down Liberator crashed 3 nautical miles [5.6 km] away, and all on board the plane were lost, shot down after the ceasefire.
The two type XXIs were quicker boats and they successfully crept away to Norway where later they too were captured.
U-534 had a crew of 52 men, all of whom escaped and 49 survived. Five were trapped in the torpedo room as she began to sink, but they managed to escape through the torpedo loading hatch once the boat had settled on the sea bed. They planned their escape the way that they had been trained, exiting through the forward torpedo hatch once the U-534 had settled on the seabed and swimming to the surface from a depth of 67 metres [220 ft]. One of these crewmen was a 17-year old Argentine wireless operator, Josef Neudorfer, fueling suspicions that U-534 was bound for South America on a secret mission. The other two deaths were caused by exposure.
U-534 had a range of over eleven hundred miles, so could have easily reached South America. Was she going to carry a leading Nazi to South America via Norway? Or was she carrying treasure looted from the occupied countries to help those Nazi who had already escaped to South America by other routes?
The only person who definitely knew was Captain Herbert Nollau, who was the only one aboard who had that information, and when he committed suicide in 1968, he took this the secret to his grave. It is possible that throughout the whole period from the end of the war he was harassed with Secret Services wanting to discover the real aim of his expedition.
As the years rolled on, rumours became more persistent and the accounts of the treasures supposed to be on board ever more extravagant. More than forty years after she sank a Danish diver, called Age Jensen found U 534 and once again the rumours started to fly. The sub was found by Danish diver and adventurer Aage Jensen in 1986 and, raised in August 1993 . Despite rumors of treasure, stolen art, and important Nazi documents, nothing of the kind was found. In 1992 a Danish publisher, Karsten Ree became interested in the submarine and decided to mount a salvage operation, using private funding, to find out once and for all what the "Mystery of the U 534" was all about. In 1993 the U-534 was lifted to the surface with the close co-operation of the Dutch Navy. The wreck remained in surprisingly good condition. Contrary to expectations, apart from personal belongings of crew members, nearly one hundred bottles of wine and a box of condoms, no gold or other valuables was found.
Five tons of explosives, however, were found, and the U-534 had three of the acoustic 'Zaunkönig' torpedoes aboard. Their most important feature was insensitivity to 'Foxer' acoustic decoys. They were devices towed behind Allied ships. Old type torpedoes would get a fix on the decoys instead of the ship, which would often save the U-Boat's target. Only 32 of these T-11 Zaukönig torpedoes were ever made, and three of these high-tech weapons, were aboard U-534.
The reason for the fierce resistance, risking one's own life and the lives of the crew members, especially on 5 May 1945, gives rise to two hypotheses. The first is the question whether Captain Nollau was so ardent a Nazi that he did not accept the possibility of surrender. Rather, it must be assumed that he was a reasonable man, after all, not everyone becomes a Captain of the Kriegsmarine. The load of T11 torpedoes and the desperate attempt to defend it do not characterize a man who knows he lost the war. They rather show that he was convinced that the end of the war had not yet come and the weapons he carried would still be needed.
The second hypothesis is the desire to sell the torpedoes and setting up in Argentina for the rest of his life. If so, however, would he risk the lives of the whole crew? There are many doubts as to what motivated the Captain to fight. Perhaps it was a sense of duty; he was given orders that had to be carried out although the war was lost. Perhaps, however, the destination was not Argentina, but Japan.
There is little doubt that this boat was headed for Japan. Many U-Boats were headed for Japan in the closing months of the war, loaded with Germany's high-tech weaponry technology so the Japanese could continue the fight and hopefully bring the Axis back to a point where a negotiated peace could be reached and all would not be lost. U-Boats carried crated Me 163 'Komet' and Me 262 jet fighters with the technological data for Japan to build them as well as other jet and rocket technology plus weaponry of all types. Several U-Boats were loaded with uranium for Japan's nuclear war machine. Japan test fired her first nuclear device a week before the Americans, but they ran out of fissionable material and the German U-Boats were supposed to bring it to them.
The supposed condoms really were not condoms at all, but balloons, filled with hydrogen to lift aluminum strips aloft - known as 'Afrodita' [Aphrodite] to foil radar. The hydrogen bottles were still aboard along with many of these "condoms" but the aluminum had long since been dissolved by the sea.
The U-534 also carried the rare Twin 3.7 cm Flakzwilling M43U on the DLM42 mount. This was one of the best AA weapons of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine. The DLM42 mount was used mainly on the Type IX as it was heavy for the Type VII U-Boats, and just above the propeller shaft on the starboard side was the exit chute of a 'Pillenwerfer.' It could deploy an anti-sonar decoy called 'Bold', named after 'Kobold', a goblin in German folklore. This made a false target for the enemy's sonar by creating a screen of bubbles from the chemical reaction of calcium hydride with sea water.
Why did U-534 carry three of the highest-tech torpedoes developed by any side in World War II? Why did they have the 'Afrodita' aboard, which normally was only used in the open and mostly unpatrolled stretches of the Indian and Pacific Oceans?
The conclusion must be that U-534 was bound for the Far East.
Was U-534 one of these boats, and was she Japan bound?
Many artifacts were recovered from the U-354 by Danish wreck diver Aage Jensen, such as weapons, equipment, bottles, name plates, stamps, breathing masks, clocks, binoculars, tools, etc. Among the recovered documents was also a large number of ciphertext Enigma messages.
As the contents of these messages was hitherto unknown German researcher Michael Hörenberg set out in 2012 to break the messages again by using distributed computing power.
Starting in July 2012 by combining 112 Intel CPU cores, using a modified software 'Turing Bombe' and brute force attacks, he achieved his first break on 31 July 2012, based on a ciphertext-only attack. By 20 October, 46 of the 50 messages had already been broken again.
One message, sent on 1 May 1945 at 06:55, is of particular historical importance, as it was sent by Admira Dönitz, to announce his appointment as Hitler's successor.
Hitler was already dead at this point, having committed suicide a day earlier, on 30 April at about 15:30 and Dönitz was officially informed about this by Reichsleiter Bormann the same day at 18:35.
The message was sent before Hitler's death was officially announced on 1 May 1945 at 22:30.
KRIEGSNOTMELDUNG [An] Alle:
Folgendes ist sofort bekanntzugeben:
Ich habe folgende Befehl erhalten: Anstelle des bisherigen Reichsmarschalls Göring setzt der Führer Sie, Herr Großadmiral, als seinen Nachfolger ein.
Schriftlische Vollmacht unterwegs.
Ab sofort sollen Sie sämtliche Maßnahmen verfügen, die sich aus die gegenwärtigen Lage ergeben.
Gez. Reichsleiter (Tulpe) 'Bormann'
[Von] Oberbefehlshaber der Marine, durch Funkstelle des Kommandierende Admiral der Unterseeboote
WAR EMERGENCY MESSAGE [To] All:
The following is to be announced immediately:
I have received the following order: In place of former Reichsmarschall Göring, the Führer has appointed you, Herr Grossadmiral, as his successor.
Written authorization [is] on the way.
Effective immediately, you are to order all measures that are required by the present situation.
Signed, Reichsleiter (Tulpe) 'Bormann':
[From] Commander-in-Chief of the Navy, [sent] by way of the Radio Station of the Commanding Admiral of Submarines
U-534 also carried not one, but two Enigma machines wired together and with a lot of spare rotor wheels, to make a super code scrambler. The radio operator of the U-534 would have been a good source to get more information from since he was the one who had used the double Enigma' but when the boat went down, but he had died before reaching the surface.
A truck with a very powerful radio transmitter/receiver had been parked atop the Obersalzberg near where Hitler and many of the Party officials had homes and near the "Southern Redoubt" where Germany anticipated holding off the advancing Allies. This truck was code named 'Krokodil,' and only it and one other truck like it were to maintain radio contact with certain U-Boats breaking out in the final days of the war.
Was U-534 one of them?
As late as 29 April 1945 quite large Ju-352 aircraft from TG.4 were operating in and out of a runway on the east-west axis in Berlins Tiergarten, along with lesser types like the Ju-52 and at least two Ju-290 aircraft.
The airstrip was created for the purpose of ferrying in naval reservists from Baltic coast garrisons and French SS Divisions to defend Berlin. The East West Axis through Berlin's Tiergarten was used by at least two Ju-52 of Luftwaffe Gen Hans Bauer's FdF (Hitler's personal Squadron), plus up to six Ju-352 aircraft (G6+XY, G6+UY, G6+WY, G6+RX, G6+YY, G6 + EX and G6+NX) all aircraft of KG.zbV2 [Großraumtransportstaffel II/TG4], Lufttransport Gruppe 4 (aka Squadron Mauß), also by Ju-290 stkz 9V+BK (KG200) piloted by Lt Herbert Wagner and by two FW-200 belonging to FdF [one coded TK+CV the other CE+IC]. In addition a Ju-352 operated by FdF stkz KT+VJ piloted by Olt Schultz is known to have made repeated flights to the East West Axis ferrying in the naval reserve unit 1.FuMLAbt. Four Arado 232 aircraft, codes A3 + QB, A3 + RB, and A3 + TB also made flights into Berlin. The Arado 232B aircraft stkz A3 + RB ended up on display at Farborough airshow after the war. This aircraft W. Nr.110029 is known to have been in service with KG200.
One Ju52 flown into Berlin was flown by Oberfeldwebel Böhm from II./TGr 3 and another Ju52 by Uffz. Johannes Lachmund who described events in his 2009 memoir: "Fliegen ; Mein Traumberuf bis zu den bitteren Erlebnissen des Krieges", pub by Verlagshaus Monsenstein und Vannerdat OHG Münster, 2009
It is also known that on the night of 27 April 1945 a Ju-290-A7 with at least fifty people including high ranking Nazis and their families flew from Prague to Barcelona. This particular aircraft Stammkennzeichnen PI+PS dubbed as "Alles Kaput," is thought to have returned to Prague because some days later the pilot surrendered it intact to US forces near Munich.
It is not to be confused with a Ju 290 flown by I/KG200 from Finsterwalde to Barcelona [Spain] 23 April, 1945, nor to be confused with a Ju-290 A5 aircraft Werk number J900178 [civil register D-AITR] which suffered a damaged tail wheel in a landing accident at Barcelonas El Prat airport on the foggy night of 5/6 April 1945, and was later adopted into Spanish service. This aircraft made three attempts to land at Barcelona in foggy conditions. Ground personnel laid out flares to guide the landing attempts and on the 3rd attempt the aircraft did land but overshot the runway crossing two ditches coming to rest in a rice field. The pilot was Flugkapitän Paul Sluzalek. The cargo was hastily unloaded and the Spanish government has never disclosed what it was. This crash led to diplomatic protests by Allied Governments.
General Franco's personal driver Stefan Aceituna claimed that Hitler was flown from Berlin on the night of 27 April leaving behind a double who was seen in the Bunker. Aceituna said that he collected Hitler off a large multi-engine German plane which arrived at the airport in Madrid on 30 April 1945.
Stefan Aceituna said from Barcelona, Hitler arrived at Madrid under the alias Adis Lupi on 30 April with a large German entourage who took over an entire wing of Franco's Presidential Palace. officially within the Palace he was known as Francos personal gardner. Aceituna insists that Hitler died of a massive coronary in the early morning of 2 November 1947. Before his death this man was being medicated with a particular medication identical to Hitlers prescriptions in Berlin during the war. His death by heart attack was hardly surprising for a man so wracked by anxiety and fallen from grace.
SS Gen Hermann Fegelein also disappeared from Berlin the night of 27 April. Fegelein claimed to his mistress Mdm Rizzler on the eve of his disappearance that Hitler had a body double installed in the Bunker.
It would appear therefore that Hitler was flown from Berlin to Prague on the night of 27 April and from there he flew to Barcelona, then Madrid. Hitlers fake obituary was read out by radio Hamburg; it seems only after a coded message was sent to Dönitz from Madrid to acknowledge Hitlers safe arrival.
Some of the escape myths about Argentina seem to have been perpetuated by Ladislas Farago for the CIA to throw investigators off the trail.
The Ultimate Truth about Nazis Fled to South America
After WW II, at least five German U-Boats reached Argentina with no less than 50 high ranking Third Reich officials on board. During the trip they sunk a US Battleship and the Brazilian cruiser 'Bahia' with a death toll of more than 400, including US citizens. Both the US and the British Government have systematically covered up the operation. Why? Did they take Hitler to Patagonia?
Supporting their research with irrefutable first hand documentation, two Argentine investigators, Carlos De Napoli and Juan Salinas, made an extraordinary contribution to unveil what has been called the last secret of World War II. Übersee Süd, "Overseas South" in English, is the name of the operation that, according to this investigation, helped high Nazi officials to escape from the Soviet fist under the umbrella of the British and US Governments.
Hitler and his fellow fugitives fled across the
Atlantic via submarines after the fall of Berlin
"WWII finished on 7 May 1945 and the first submarine arrived in Argentina on 10 July. The second one, on 17 August", says De Napoli. The Argentine investigator makes reference to the well-known landing of the German U-boats U-530 and U-977 that surrendered to the Argentine Navy in those days.
Their commanders Otto Wermuth and Heinz Schäffer, respectively, were arrested and interrogated several times in Buenos Aires, Washington and London. However, what has been systematically covered up by US and British authorities is the fact that they sunk the 'USS Eagle 56' Battleship in front of the US coasts and the Brazilian Cruiser 'Bahia', amid three other vessels. So, the immediate question is why the British and the Americans [from the North and the South] harbored the assassination of more than 400 people when the war had finished two months ago?
"There was a conspiracy against the USSR. It was the Operation Sunrise [Crossword for the British] designed to stop the advance of Stalin troops over Europe. Therefore, the English needed to count on German officers and soldiers to continue the war against Russia and destroy communism. Übersee Süd is part of this large operation", explains Juan Salinas, former investigator of the bomb attack to a Jewish club in Buenos Aires in 1995.
Unfortunately is impossible to check this information with official sources as documents related to Operation Sunrise have been classified by both the US and British authorities: 'Top Secret". It means that they are kept out from the insidious sight of investigators for 75 years. Another detail: they are the only ones that remain classified about World War II.
"Churchill was the mastermind of the escape. The Argentine Navy established a free zone to let Germans to disembark without disturbs, following British instructions", told Salinas to PRAVDA.Ru. In fact, there exists an order issued by Argentine authorities to stop attacks to German submarines operating close to the Argentine beaches. The cautious reader may point out why other forces attacked the German U-boats if the British Government was behind the operation. De Napoli answers: "Churchill successors [Tories lost the elections immediately after the war and the Labor Party came into power], did not want the operation to go on".
However, as facts show, the operation went ahead and no less than 50 Third Reich high officials found cover in the desolated lands of Southern regions of Argentina and Chile. It is important to notice that the Patagonia holds the largest German community of Latin America and many Nazi and Ustasha's criminals lived there after the war: Mengele, Eichmann, Martin Bormann, Ante Pavelic and Erich Priebke among others. According with documentation supplied by the Argentine, Brazilian and US navies, the Norwegian and Danish Embassies in Buenos Aires and the United States National Archives and Record Administration -NARA-, Salinas and De Napoli could recreate the trip of the U-boats. Juicy data has been also provided by the memories of Heinz Schäffer, Commander of the U-977.
A fleet of almost 20 submarines sailed out from the Norwegian port of Bergen, between 1 May and the capitulation of the Third Reich, six days later. They joined another group of U-Boats coming from the US coasts [the U-530 and others] in Cape Verde, an Atlantic archipelago close to Africa. There, they got notified that the Flensburg Government, headed by Great Admiral Dõnitz after Hitler's death, and kept alive by the Western Allies until 23 May 1945, had fallen.
Consequently, German commanders, who expected a new turn on international politics based on the outbreak of a conflict between the Soviet Union and the Anglo-Saxons, became aware that they would have to go on by their own. Some Kriegmarine Officers decided to sink their U-Boats, surrender to the enemy or come back to Europe. However, at least six U-Boats, including the U-530 and the U-977, headed South to Argentina carrying "heavy" passengers and gold.
"Then, the tragedy came", points out Salinas. "Disguised as fishing vessels, the German submarines sailed on the sea. Shortly after crossing the Equator Line, they came across the operation to guide US planes to Japan. The route Natal - Dakar". The Brazilian cruiser 'Bahia', was taking part in the operation when, according to the results of the investigations, it was shot by two acoustic torpedoes fired by the U-977. The toll: 336 crewmembers died in what is, by far, the largest-ever catastrophe of the Brazilian Navy.
William Joseph Eustace, Andrew Jackson Pendleton, Emmet Peper Salles and Frank Benjamin Sparks, were the four US radio operators of the 'Bahia'. They died after the shooting, but the US Government reported them as "disappeared". Obviously, this is the main reason why the German Government did not co-operate on Salinas and De Napoli's investigation. The Brazilians said that the sinking of the 'Bahia' was a fatal accident; exactly the same speech as did the US Navy on the shooting of the 'USS Eagle 56'... until last year. Then, the U-977, the U-530 and others went down to Argentina and the first two surrendered to the local authorities.
Was Adolf Hitler a passenger on one of these U-Boats? De Napoli answers:
"We think that Hitler, Eva Braun, Gretl Braun and Martin Bormann escaped thanks to this operation. However, we cannot assure whether Hitler landed in Argentina or not".
Martin Bormann died in Paraguay. Perhaps, Stalin's suspects became true:
"Hitler fled either to Spain or to Argentina", he told to the at that time US Secretary of State, James Byrne.
But this is subject to further investigations.
-- Hernan Etchaleco
27 February 2003
This article is based on the book "Ultramar Sur. La Ultima operacion secreta del Tercer Reich", published by Grupo Editorial Norma, and conversations with Juan Salinas and Carlos De Napoli co-writers of the book.
"Pravda" claims the US ship was the 'USS Eagle 56'. No US Battleship was sunk at sea in WWII. 'USS Eagle 56' (PE-56) was a United States Navy World War I era patrol boat that remained in service until World War II. It was sunk on 23 April 1945, off the Maine coast towing targets for dive bombing practice. Only thirteen of the 67 crew members survived. The navy maintained the ship was sunk by a boiler room explosion until recently, finally acknowledging that the 'USS Eagle 56' had in fact been sunk by U-Boat U-853. U-853 was sunk on 6 May 1945, in the North Sea southeast of New London.
On 23 February 1945 Germany sent U-853 on her third war patrol to harass US coastal shipping. Under the command of Oberleutnant zur See Helmut Frömsdorf, U-853 did not sink any targets during the first weeks of her patrol. Her crossing of the Atlantic was slow because she used her Schnorchel to remain submerged to avoid being spotted by Allied aircraft. On 1 April 1945 U-853 was ordered to the Gulf of Maine. On 23 April she fatally torpedoed 'USS Eagle Boat 56' near Portland, Maine. The next day 'USS Muskegon' made sonar contact and attacked U-853, but failed to destroy her.
'Eagle Boat 56', a World War I-era patrol boat, was towing targets for a United States Navy dive-bomber training exercise 3 nautical miles (5.6 km; 3.5 mi) off Cape Elizabeth when she exploded amidships and sank. Only 13 of the 67 crew survived. Although several survivors claimed to have seen a submarine sail with yellow and red insignia, a Navy inquiry attributed the sinking to a boiler explosion.
The Navy reversed its findings in 2001 to acknowledge that the sinking was due to hostile fire and awarded Purple Hearts to the survivors and next-of-kin of the deceased.
On 5 May 1945, President (Reichspräsident) of Nazi Germany Karl Dönitz ordered all U-Boats to cease offensive operations and return to their bases. U-853 was lying in wait off Point Judith, Rhode Island at the time.
According to the US Coast Guard, U-853 did not receive that order, or less likely, ignored it. Soon after, her torpedo blew off the stern of 'SS Black Point', a 368-foot [112 m] collier underway from New York to Boston. Within 15 minutes 'Black Point' had sunk in 100 feet [30 m] of water less than 4 nautical miles (7.4 km; 4.6 mi) south of Point Judith. She was the last US-flagged merchant ship lost in World War II. Twelve men died, while 34 crew members were rescued. One of the rescuing ships, Yugoslav freighter 'SS Kamen', sent a report of the torpedoing to authorities. The US Navy organized a "hunter-killer" group that included four American warships: 'Ericsson' [DD-440], 'Amick' [DE-168], 'Atherton' (DE-169), and 'Moberly' [PF-63].
The group discovered U-853 bottomed in 18 fathoms [108 ft; 33 m], and dropped depth charges and hedgehogs during a 16-hour attack. At first the U-Boat attempted to flee, and then tried to hide by lying still. Both times it was found by Sonar. The morning of 6 May 1945 two K-Class blimps from Lakehurst, New Jersey, K-16 and K-58, joined the attack, locating oil slicks and marking suspected locations with smoke and dye markers. K-16 also attacked with 7.2-inch rocket bombs. Numerous depth charge and hedgehog attacks from 'Atherton' and 'Moberly' resulted in planking, life rafts, a chart tabletop, clothing, and an officer's cap floating to the surface.
U.S. authorities wondered why veteran Captain Helmut Fromsdorf risked an attack in shallow water, close to shore, and why he remained in the area for 90 minutes before arrival of the search boats. At no time did the German sub attempt to surface, abandon ship, or try to torpedo her attackers.
It is not known whether Captain Fromsdorf received the message to cease fire.
With the loss of all 55 officers and men, U-853 was one of the last U-Boats sunk during World War II. and, with U-881, the last to be sunk in US waters. 'Atherton' and 'Moberly' received credit for the kill.
For her first patrol, U-881 was assigned to operate in US Easter Coastal waters with wolf pack 'Seewolf'. During this operation U-881 was depth charged and sunk by the American destroyer escort 'Farquhar' on 6 May 1945.
On the morning of 7 May 1945, U-320 a modified Type VIIC/41 boat under Oberleutnant zur See Siegfried Breinlinger was two days into her first operational patrol and running submerged, when she was she was badly damaged by depth charges dropped from a British Catalina of No. 210 Squadron RAF. The battered submarine managed to surface off the Norwegian coast the following day, where she was scuttled. Emmerich and all his crew survived. U-320 was the last U-Boat to be sunk in action during the Battle of the Atlantic.
Also on 7 May, U-1023, a modified Type VIIC/41 under Oberleutnant Wolfgang Strenger, sighted a group of Norwegian minesweepers off Portland Bill. In his first successful attack since the patrol started, in March, he struck. His torpedoes hit NYMS 382, which sank with the loss of 22 men. Three days later, the ship surrendered at Weymouth, England
At around the same time, U-2336, a Type XXIII under Oberleutnant zur See Jürgen Vockel seven days into her first operational patrol, sighted a British convoy off the Isle of May inside the Firth of Forth, sank the last Allied merchant ships to be lost to a German submarine in the war, when she torpedoed and sank the freighters 'Sneland' and 'Avondale Park'.
These actions took place just hours before the German surrender.
These were the last ships to be sunk by enemy action in the Battle of the Atlantic, nearly five and a half years after the first shot was fired.
The 'Bahia' was sunk by U-977, which surrendered at Mar del Plata, Argentina on 17 August 1945, and was turned over to the US for testing. Four US radiomen: William Joseph Eustace, Andrew Jackson Pendleton, Emmet Peper Salles, and Frank Benjamin Sparksere were aboard the "Bahia" and were killed. The US Navy still lists the men as missing in action. Brazil ascribes the sinking of the 'Bahia' to an onboard explosion.
Though several extreme websites claim that the Brazilian light cruiser 'Bahia' was sunk by U-977 around 4 July 1945, while it was on route to Argentina, nothing of the kind was further from the truth. It was discovered that the 'Bahia' was sunk by an accidental explosion triggered by an anti-aircraft gun hitting racked depth charges during gunnery practice.
The article in "Pravda" was based on information from Argentina researchers Carlos De Napoli and Juan Salinas. They claim that a fleet of almost 20 U-Boats sailed from the Norwegian port of Bergen, between 1 May and 6 May. They joined another group of U-Boats coming from the US coasts around Cape Verde. There they learned of the surrender. Some scuttled their boats, others surrendered, and still others set course for Germany. However, at least six of the U-Boats proceeded for Argentina. Further, the article claimed that the Argentina Navy was ordered to stop attacks on German U-Boats operating close to Argentina beaches, on orders from Churchill. Ladislas Farago for one has confirmed that the Argentina Navy was issued such an order by Peron. He does not however, mention that the order came from Britain.
Heinz Schäffer claimed in his Argentine interrogations that U-977 and U-530 had delivered valuables to Antarctic shores. Otto Wermuth told ArgNavy that U-530 had been engaged on secret operations and was not attached to any particular Flotilla. U-530 was also missing 7 torpedoes it had on leaving Europe. Allies intercepted references to a so called Black Fleet mainly composed of U-Boats lost and stricken off in Baltic training which were then raised and refurbished for SS crews to smuggle blockaded items from Argentina. This was known as operation Fireland.
The "Pravda" article contains a serious error in the name of the US ship sunk. Due to the controversy of the sinking being listed as a boiler explosion when the survivors reported seeing a trotting horse on a red shield on the conning tower, the sinking of the "USS Eagle 56" has been thoroughly investigated. However, the article contains much information known to be true, including the listing of two of the U-Boats: U-530 and U-977. U-530 surrendered in the Mar del Plata, Argentina on 10 July 1945. It was turned over to the US for testing. Other information has been partially confirmed by other investigators. It is also known initially, the US didn't believe the report of Hitler's suicide at first and launched a search in South America for him and other missing top Nazis. After surrendering, the commander of U-977 Heinz Schäffer was arrested and charged with smuggling war criminals to South America.
Interestingly, U-530 appeared to have been stationed around Cape Verde in 1944. On 23 June 1944, U-530 rendezvoused with the Japanese sub I-52 to transfer a radar detector about 850 miles west of the islands. The Allies were aware of the transfer and Allied planes managed to sink the Japanese submarine. The I-52 was located in 1955 and still contains 2 tons of gold.
I-52, code-named 'Momi', Japanese for Evergreen, was a Type C3 cargo submarine, or Type C Modified submarine [Junsen Hei-gata-kai], of the Imperial Japanese Navy, used during World War II for a secret mission to Lorient, France, then occupied by Germany, during which she was sunk.
This class of submarines was designed and built by Mitsubishi Corporation, between 1943 and 1944, as cargo carriers. They were quite long and carried a crew of up to 94. They also had a long cruising range at a speed of 12 knots [22 km/h]. The Japanese constructed only three of these submarines during World War II (I-52, I-53 and I-55, although twenty were planned. They were the largest submarines ever built at that time, and were known as the most advanced Japanese submarines of their time.
The keel of I-52 was laid on 18 March 1942, and she was commissioned on 28 December 1943 into the 11th submarine squadron. After training in Japan she was selected for a Yanagi [exchange] mission to Germany.
These were missions enabled under the Axis Powers' Tripartite Pact to provide for an exchange of strategic materials and manufactured goods between Germany, Italy and Japan. Initially, cargo ships made the exchanges, but when that was no longer possible submarines were used.
Only five other submarines had attempted this intercontinental voyage during World War II: I-30 [April 1942], I-8 [June 1943], I-34 [October 1943], I-29 [November 1943], and German submarine U-511 [August 1943]. Of these, I-30 was sunk by a mine, I-34 by the British submarine HMS Taurus, and I-29 by the United States submarine Sawfish [assisted by Ultra intelligence].
I-52 was also known as Japan's "Golden Submarine", because she was carrying a cargo of gold to Germany as payment for matériel and technology. There has been speculation that a peace proposal to the Allies was contained on board the I-52 as well, but this is unlikely on two counts: there is no evidence that the Japanese government was interested in peace proposals or negotiated settlements at that stage in the war; and the Japanese kept an open dialogue with their diplomatic attachés via radio and diplomatic voucher through Russia, and had no need for long and uncertain transfer via a submarine bound for a Nazi-controlled area of western Europe.
Was there a peace proposal from Tokyo that never made it into the hands of its intended recipient, Yoshikazu Fujimura? Yoshikazu Fujimura, the assistant naval attaché in Switzerland, had been in secret peace negotiations with US representative, Allen Dulles.
It is believed that 800 kg [1,000-lbs] of uranium oxide awaited I-52 for her return voyage at Lorient according to Ultra decrypts. It has been speculated that this was for the Japanese to develop a radiological weapon [a so-called "dirty bomb"] for use against the United States. [The amount of unenriched Uranium oxide would not have been enough to create an atomic bomb, though if used in a nuclear reactor it could have created poisonous fission products].
On 10 March 1944, on her maiden voyage, I-52 [Commander Uno Kameo] departed Kure via Sasebo for Singapore. Her cargo from Japan included 9.8 tons of molybdenum, 11 tons of tungsten, 2.2 tons of gold in 146 bars packed in 49 metal boxes, 3 tons of opium and 54 kg of caffeine. The gold was payment for German optical technology. She also carried 14 passengers, primarily Japanese technicians, who were to study German technology in anti-aircraft guns, and engines for torpedo boats.
In Singapore she picked up a further 120 tons of tin in ingots, 59.8 tons of caoutchouc [raw rubber] in bales and 3.3 tons of quinine, and headed through the Indian Ocean, to the Atlantic Ocean.
On 6 June 1944, the Japanese naval attaché in Berlin, Rear Admiral Kojima Hideo, signaled the submarine that the Allies had landed in Normandy, thus threatening her eventual destination of Lorient on the coast of France. She was advised to prepare for Norway instead. She was also instructed to rendezvous with a German submarine. I-52 responded with her position, and the message was intercepted and decoded by US intelligence; I-52 had been closely watched all the way from Singapore. Guided by the F-21 Submarine Tracking Room and F-211 'Secret Room' of the Tenth Fleet which was in charge of the Atlantic section, a hunter-killer task force was targeted towards her.
The escort carrier 'USS Bogue' [CVE-9] and five destroyer escorts, en route to the United States from Europe, having departed from Casablanca on 15 June 1944, were ordered to find and destroy the Japanese submarine. This task force, on its way from Hampton Roads to Casablanca, had sunk another Japanese submarine, the Type IX RO-501 (formerly U-1224) on 13 May 1944, was a very effective force, sinking 13 German and Japanese submarines between February 1943 and July 1945.
On the night of 22 June 1944, in mid-Atlantic, about 850 nautical miles [1,574 km] west of the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa, I-52 rendezvoused with U-530, a Type IXC/40 U-Boat commanded by Kapitänleutnant Kurt Lange, who was replaced in January 1945 by Oberleutnant zur See Otto Wermuth, which had departed Lorient on 22 May 1944 ultimately for operations in the Trinidad area.
U-530 provided I-52 with fuel, and also transferred a Naxos FuMB 7 radar detector, and an Enigma coding machine, along with two radar operators, Petty Officers Schulze and Behrendt, and a German liaison officer, as a navigator to help the submarine survive the final leg of the journey into Lorient through the Bay of Biscay. I-52 was also to be fitted with a Schnorchel device at Lorient, and in addition, 35 to 40 tons of secret documents, drawings, and strategic cargo awaited her return trip to Japan: T-5 acoustic torpedoes, a Jumo 213-A motor used on the long-nosed Focke-Wulf Fw-190D fighter, radar equipment, vacuum tubes, ball bearings, bombsights, chemicals, alloy steel, and optical glass.
With a belch of exhaust from her Diesels, Type IXC-40 U-Boat U530 edges away from
Japanese C3 Class submarine I-52, as two Japanese sailors in a rubber dinghy
make their way back to their boat.
Arriving in the area of the meeting, the 'USS Bogue' began launching flights of Grumman TBF-1C Avenger torpedo bombers to search for the submarines. U-530 escaped undetected. I-52 did not.
At approximately 2340 on 23 June, Chief Ed Whitlock, the radar operator in Lieutenant Commander Jesse Taylor's TBF Avenger, detected a surface contact. Taylor immediately dropped flares, illuminating the area, and attacked. After his first pass, he saw the depth bomb explosions just to starboard of the submarine, a near miss, and the boat diving. Taylor dropped a sonobouy, a newly-developed device that picked up underwater noise and transmitted it back to the aircraft carrier. Directed from the carrier according to the sonobouy`s signal, Taylor began a torpedo attack, dropping a Mark 24 "mine." That term was used for what was code-named "Fido": the first Allied acoustic torpedo, developed by the Harvard Underwater Sound Lab, which homed in on the sounds of the submarine. Fido was designed to be a "mission kill" weapon, it would damage the submarine so badly it would have to surface, rather than destroying it completely. Within minutes, the sonobouys transmitted the sounds of an explosion and mechanical break-up noises.
As Taylor's patrol ended, he was relieved by Lieutenant (junior grade) William "Flash" Gordon, accompanied by civilian underwater sound expert Price Fish. They arrived on the scene just after midnight, and circled with Taylor for some time. At about 0100, Fish reported hearing some faint propeller noise in the area.
Captain Aurelius Vosseller, commanding officer of 'Bogue', ordered a second attack and another "Fido" was dropped. Taylor departed from the area at 0115, but Gordon stayed to circle the area and listen for any sign of activity but no further activity was reported.
U-530 returned to base, this time Flensburg, after 133 days at sea.
Additional information surfaced in 1997 in Argentina. The national newspaper, "Ambito Financiero", was contacted by a man giving his full German name and his commander's identity number. He claimed he arrived in Argentina after scuttling his U-Boat. In 1970s, a different person making the same claim contacted the same paper. This U-Boat commander wrote that, on Hitler's specific orders, ten submarines, each with fifty officers and crew, were to sail to Argentina to help found the Fourth Reich. Recently, more information on this fleet of U-boats came from Norway. There, a person claiming to have allegedly worked in an archive department of the Nazi Navy, a large part of which was stationed in southern Norway during the War, discovered additional documents that collaborate the Argentina information. Other researchers have long claimed two U-Boats were scuttled after unloading their cargo of documents and gold in shallow water, which would confirm the two contacts with the paper.
The "Pravda" article was obviously inflated largely along the lines of the Soviet suspicions of the time. However, setting aside its faults, it sheds additional light on information that the Untied States and England would like to see buried. Additional searches for German U-Boats along the Argentina coast are already being planned. Any discoveries would only serve to confirm more of the "Pravda" article as well as the contacts made with the Argentina paper.
Franklin Roosevelt often lied to further his goals. In a radio address broadcast to the nation on 23 October 1940, for example, he gave "this most solemn assurance" that he had not given any "secret understanding in any shape or form, direct or indirect, with any government or any other nation in any part of the world, to involve this nation in any war or for any other purpose". But American, British and Polish documents (mostly released many years later) proved that this "most solemn assurance" was a bald-faced lie. Roosevelt had, in fact, made numerous secret arrangements to involve the U.S. in war.
On 11 March 1941 Roosevelt signed the Lend-Lease bill into law, permitting increased deliveries of military aid to Britain in violation of U.S. neutrality and international law.
In April Roosevelt illegally sent U.S. troops to occupy Greenland.
On 27 May he proclaimed a state of "unlimited national emergency," a kind of presidential declaration of war that circumvented a power constitutionally reserved to Congress.
Following the Axis attack against the USSR in June, the Roosevelt administration began delivering enormous quantities of military aid to the beleagured Soviets. These shipments also blatantly violated international law.
In July Roosevelt illegally sent American troops to occupy Iceland.
Some U.S. officials were concerned about British wartime efforts to deceive the American government and people. In a 5 September 1941 memorandum forwarded to Secretary of State Cordell Hull, Assistant Secretary of State Adolf Berle warned that British intelligence agents were manufacturing phony documents detailing supposed German conspiracies. Americans should be "on our guard" against these British-invented "false scares," Berle concluded.
The President began his 1941 Navy Day address broadcast over nationwide radio on 27 October by recalling that German submarines had torpedoed the U.S. destroyer 'Greer' on 4 September 1941 and the U.S. destroyer 'Kearny' on 17 October.
In highly emotional language, he characterized these incidents as unprovoked acts of aggression directed against all Americans. He declared that although he had wanted to avoid conflict, shooting had begun and "history has recorded who fired the first shot".
What Roosevelt deliberately failed to mention was the fact that in each case the U.S. destroyers had been engaged in attack operations against the submarines, which fired in self-defense only as a last resort. Hitler wanted to avoid war with the United States, and had expressly ordered German submarines to avoid conflicts with U.S warships at all costs, except to avoid imminent destruction. Roosevelt's standing "shoot on sight" orders to the U.S Navy were specifically designed to make incidents like the ones he so piously condemned inevitable.
While the president repeated he did not want war and had no intent to send an expeditionary force to Europe, the militant secretaries of the Navy and of the War Department, Knox and Stimson, denounced the neutrality legislation in speeches and public declarations and advocated an American intervention in the Atlantic Battle. As members of the cabinet they could not do it without the presidents consent.
-- Fehrenbach, T.F.: "F.D.R.s Undeclared War 1939 to 1941"
Later in his address, President Franklin Roosevelt made an astonishing claim:
"I have in my possession a secret map, made in Germany by Hitler's government, by planners of the new world order. It is a map of South America and part of Central America, as Hitler proposes to organize it".
The map, the President explained, showed South America, as well as "our great life line, the Panama Canal," divided into five vassal states under German domination.
"That map, my friends, makes clear the Nazi design not only against South America but against the United States as well".
Roosevelt went on to reveal that he also had in his possession "another document made in Germany by Hitler's government. "It is a detailed plan to abolish all existing religions -- Catholic, Protestant, Mohammedan, Hindu, Buddhist, and Jewish alike" which Germany will impose "on a dominated world, if Hitler wins".
"The property of all churches will be seized by the Reich and its puppets. The cross and all other symbols of religion are to be forbidden. The clergy are to be liquidated. In the place of the churches of our civilization there is to be set up an international Nazi church, a church which will be served by orators sent out by the Nazi government. And in the place of the Bible, the words of 'Mein Kampf' will be imposed and enforced as Holy Writ. And in the place of the cross of Christ will be put two symbols: the Swastika and the naked sword".
The German government immediately responded to Roosevelt's speech by denouncing his "documents" as preposterous frauds. At a press conference the next day, a reporter rather naturally asked the President for a copy of the "secret map." But Roosevelt refused, insisting only that it came from "a source which is undoubtedly reliable".
In a memoir published in late 1984, war-time British agent Ivar Bryce, who worked under Churchill's man William Stephenson, who had been given his mission: "Provoke America to go to war with Germany." claimed credit for thinking up the "secret map" scheme. Of course, the other "document" cited by Roosevelt, purporting to outline German plans to abolish the world's religions, was never found; it was just as fraudulent as the "secret map."
Nicholas John Cull, in his book, "Selling War: The British Propaganda Campaign Against American 'Neutrality' in World War II", based on extensive archival research and personal interviews, relates:
"Whatever the exact origin of the map, the most striking feature of the episode was the complicity of the President of the United States in perpetrating the fraud".
While FDR indeed was a steadfast advocate for a more active US role in the unfolding conflict, he was up against formidable internal resistance to entry into war. It was the British who had more to gain from American involvement, because they had everything to lose. In this phase of the conflict, Britain stood virtually alone, Nazi Germany controlling most of the European continent and kicking Soviet butt in the early months of Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of the Soviet Union. The US would only be dragged into the war after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, later that same year, on 7 December.
In his address to Congress calling for war, after Pearl Harbor, FDR did not even mention Germany. Yet Hitler stunned the world by declaring war on America. Why? Among the reasons cited by Germany was the provocation of FDR's Navy Day speech and fake map'
"Germany is perhaps the only great nation, which has never had a colony either in North or South America, or otherwise displayed there was any political activity, unless mention is made of the emigration of many millions of Germans and of their work, which, however, has only been to the benefit of the American Continent and of the U.S.A".
-- from ' Declaration of War on the US' by Adolf Hitler 11 December 1941
Congresswoman Clare Booth-Luce, shocked many people by saying at the Republican Party Convention in 1944 that Roosevelt has lied us into the war because he did not have the political courage to lead us into it". However, after this statement proved to be correct, the Roosevelt followers ceased to deny it, but praised it by claiming he was "forced to lie" to save his country and then England and "the world".
Stephenson's forgery was a triumph, and although he used fraud and blackmail to goad the U.S. into a war that killed and wounded a million Americans, he is the hero of the best-seller "A Man Called Intrepid". And not only has FDR been forgiven, he has been celebrated. His lies, it is said, were noble lies, to rouse an isolationist America into doing its duty and ridding the world of Adolf Hitler.
For Britain, desperate times called for desperate measures, one of which would have been the forgery of this map, the point of which was to instill in the Americans the notion that the Nazis, if victorious in Europe, would not leave the American continent alone, thus challenging the Monroe Doctrine. The story behind the map, as produced by the British intelligence services, went like this:
In October 1941, a British agent managed to snatch this map from the bag of a German courier straight after the latters involvement in a car crash in Buenos Aires. The map showed how the Nazis intended to reorganise South America into five satellite states, each one a Gau with a German Gauleiter:
Guyana [encompassing British, Dutch and French Guyana, but wholly under the tutelage of the collaborating French government headquartered in Vichy];
Neuspanien [New Spain, an agglomeration of Venezuela, Colombia, Equador and Panama meaning the Panama Canal, at that time under US sovereignty, would at least indirectly come under Nazi control];
Chile [being a fusion of Peru, part of Bolivia and Chile itself, dissected halfway by an Argentinian corridor to the Pacific port of Antofagasta];
Argentina [Argentina itself, Uruguay and Paraguay, and the aforementioned Antofagasta corridor];
Brazil [being Brazil, plus part of Bolivia].
Interestingly, the maps legend stresses:
"Luftverkehrsnetz der Vereinigten Staaten Süd-Amerikas Hauptlinien". [Air Routes in the United States of South America Main Lines], indicating that these states would be joined in a well-connected subcontinent-wide political union [most likely a Nazi-induced shotgun wedding]. Such a unified behemoth under German control would inevitably pose a threat to the US.
As it turned out, World War II hardly touched South America. Only after the war did it gain some notoriety as the hideout of many top-level Nazis, including Adolf Eichmann, who was caught by the Israelis in Argentina, and Josef Mengele, who died peacefully in Brazil.
Cull's study, though written from what D.C. Watt has called a "triumphalist" perspective on British propaganda, provides a great deal of information to those who seek to avoid future foreign entanglements.
"Selling War" gives ample, if unintended support for the judgment of the great diplomatic historian Charles Callan Tansill in "Back Door to War":
"The main objective of American foreign policy since 1900 has been the preservation of the British Empire".
And that was also the problem for President Bush. In the 2003 State of the Union, he declared:
"The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa. Our intelligence sources tell us that he has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes suitable for nuclear weapons production".
For those who opposed war with Iraq as necessary, this was riveting. If Saddam was building nuclear weapons, the case for war was far more compelling than if all he had were Scuds, mustard gas and anthrax he could not deliver. Days after the president spoke, Dick Cheney raised anew the awful specter: "We believe he has ... reconstituted nuclear weapons".
Much later it was learned that the critical document on which the president relied was also a naked forgery. Someone fabricated the document that supposedly proved Iraq was secretly trying to buy uranium from Niger.
Moreover, the CIA knew the truth, as ex-ambassador Joe Wilson had been sent to Niger to ferret it out. And Wilson had returned to report that the nuclear link to Iraq did not exist.
So, two questions remain. Who forged the Niger document? Who put the lie in the president's State of the Union address?
Fingers are being pointed in all directions. President Bush gave the British government as his source, leading one to suspect the heirs of Bryce and Stephenson. The Brits point to the CIA. The "Washington Post" said that a foreign intelligence agency was the source. CNN cited officials who said it was not the Brits or Mossad. Lately, Italy has popped up as a possible source and the Iraqi National Congress of Ahmed Chalabi.
Whoever did it, the forgery so crude it suggests the author knew his recipient wanted it so badly he would not bother to verify it was a war crime, a deliberate provocation of the United States to instigate a war on a country that did not threaten America.
Bratzel, John F., and Leslie B. Rout, Jr., "FDR and The 'Secret Map'," 'The Wilson Quarterly' (Washington, DC), New Year's 1985
'Ex-British Agent Says FDR's Nazi Map Faked,' "Foreign Intelligence Literary Scene" (Frederick, MD: University Publications of America), December 1984
'President Roosevelt's Navy Day Address on World Affairs,' "The New York Times", 28 October 1941
Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger.
- Hermann Wilhelm Göring at the Nuremberg trials 1946 -
All the Leaders of the Third Reich Fled to Latin America...
2 April 2009
In May, 1945 officers of the SMERSH, the counter-intelligence department of the Red Army, found the burned bodies of Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun in a garden just outside the Reich Chancellery. An identification procedure was carried out to exclude any doubts whether the corpses were those of the Nazi leader and his wife, but for a long time its results remained classified. The secrecy bred various alternative versions. Former Chief of US Intelligence in Berlin Col. W.J. Heimlich stated that according to his own report "there was no evidence beyond that of HEARSAY to support the THEORY of Hitler's suicide". Later former CIA Director Bedell Smith expressed an opinion coinciding with that of his colleague by saying that nobody was able to prove Hitler's death in Berlin.
The claims awakened the fantasy of numerous individuals whose interests revolved around the history of Nazi Germany. Hundreds of books and dozens of movies about Operation ODESSA, the transfer of Nazi leaders to hideouts in various remote parts of the world - have seen the light of day as a result. Like many aspects of the short existence of the Third Reich the theme is indeed captivating. Currently there seems to be a Nazi history boom in Russia. Bookstores are loaded with literature on the subject. Biographies of Nazi leaders, memoirs written by Wehrmacht generals and Luftwaffe pilots, treatises on the Abwehr and the Gestapo may be a specific sort of pabulum, but in Russia they clearly have a permanent readership.
The Swastika can be seen on most of the book covers. Once I inadvertently heard a piece of a conversation among people I did not know in a bookstore - someone said: "All the leaders of the Third Reich fled to Latin America". I was not too surprised. You can run across much stronger statements on the Internet like "Hitler remained alive for a whole decade after Stalin's death and the truth finally became impossible to conceal".
The attempts made by writers, journalists, and cohorts of sensation-seekers to float more positive and optimistic versions of what happened to Nazi leaders should not come as a surprise in the context of the current Western campaign aimed at radically reassessing the results of World War II and understating, if not altogether denying, the role played by the Soviet Union in routing Nazi Germany and its allies. Oftentimes Nazi leaders are portrayed as fearless warriors who rose against the expansion of "the Russian Bolshevism" but were swept away by "the Eastern Hordes".
The final point in the biographies of many of the Nazi leaders was put by the Nuremberg Trials, but masters of falsifications either pretend not to notice the episodes or distort them in the style of the now-popular fantasy genre which ideologists of the dominant neoliberal doctrine brought to the forefront of the modern art. The reality which does not correspond to ideology can be cosmetically processed. A whole generation grew up on various fantasies like "The Lord of the Rings", "Harry Potter", and likewise global projects, and quite a few people are prepared to believe in incredible transformations of reality, miraculous transfigurations, magic illusions, and mystical triumphs of the elevated virtual reality over the boring ordinary life.
The popularization of the hypothesis that Hitler survived in an underground "New Berlin" in Antarctica was one of the first attempts to plant the fantasy genre into historical literature. Allegedly engineers and construction workers delivered to the continent by 35 [!] submarines of Führer's Convoy had been building the installation in enormous underground oases in 1939-1943.
Even wider circulation was enjoyed by the version according to which Nazi leaders had fled in numbers to Latin America and established a secret "Fourth Reich". It was put forward by Ladislas Farago, an ethnic Hungarian who worked for the U.S. Naval Intelligence during World War II and cleverly utilized his unique knowledge and experience after it. He wrote books about the struggle between intelligence services and Nazi criminals that managed to avoid punishment by fleeing across the ocean. Farago's "Martin Bormann and the Fourth Reich" became a bestseller in 1970s.
By professionally arranging the materials at his disposal the author attempted to prove that Adolf Hitler's personal secretary, chief of the Parteikanzlei, and "Gray Cardinal" Bormann escaped from the intelligence services of the anti-fascist coalition countries and made it to Latin America, where he lived without serious problems and died at a senior age. Farago presented in a lively fashion the history of searches for Bormann, cited a whole bulk of documents, and supplied details of conversations with eyewitnesses of Bormann's secret life and even with Bormann himself.
The books left many readers convinced that the Third Reich's number two official had miraculously survived and discredited the report that Bormann's skeleton had been found at a construction site in Berlin a few years after the end of the war and identified.
In Farago's interpretation, Bormann created in Latin America a secret network of his aides and native sympathizers which replicated the "authority vertical", the administrative system, and the security machine of the Third Reich. Bormann's empire allegedly spread over Argentine, Paraguay, Chile, and Bolivia, and also had bases in other Latin American countries.
Indirectly Farago's version was confirmed by the accomplishments of the so-called Nazi hunters, of whom Simon Wiesenthal, a survivor of a Nazi concentration camp, was the best-known. Flows of information - at times quite unreliable - concerning Nazi criminals at large converged in Wiesenthal's headquarters. Thus Wiesenthal floated numerous legends about the powerful Nazi underground in Latin America.
Nevertheless he must be credited with having done a lot to make Nazi criminals face justice. The information supplied by Wiesenthal led to the seizure of Adolf Eichmann in Argentine and helped to establish the whereabouts of Butcher of Lyon Klaus Barbie who - after protracted strife - was eventually deported to France. At one time there was hope that the notorious Nazi sadist - physician Josef Mengele would also be caught in no time in Brazil or Paraguay.
A lot has been written about Wiesenthal's efforts to put on trial Walter Rauff, the SS officer who designed gas vans, the mobile gas chambers used by the SS to exterminate prisoners. After trying to land in various countries he finally settled down in Chile where he got the job of an "adviser" with Pinochet's secret police DINA. Rauff patronized Colonia Dignidad regarded as a Nazi enclave in Chile. The colony was founded by former Nazi corporal and a fanatical follower of Hitler, Paul Schäfer. If the Fourth Reich ever existed, Colonia Dignidad would have been its only part to become known.
Interest in the Fourth Reich myth began to evaporate in the 1980s -1990s as at that time the Nazi criminals who found shelter in Latin America had to reach their seventies or even eighties. The page of history was about to be turned, but in 2000 the theme of the Nazi underground was revitalized by Argentinian journalist Abel Basti with his sensational books "Hitler En Argentina" and "Bariloche Nazi: Sitios Historicos Relacionados Al Nacionalsocialismo". They were carefully documented and included photographs like post-war pictures of Hitler and his wife Eva Braun whom he married in his Bunker while the fighting of Berlin was raging. Basti's imagination and ability to invent and combine evidence were superior even to those of late Farago. The latter at least never claimed that Hitler personally headed the Fourth Reich in the name of the struggle against plutocracy, communism, Jewry, and Free Masonry.
Basti wrote that Hitler, Eva Braun, and the Führer's closest aides flew from the burning Berlin to Spain (or, alternatively, to Norway), and then crossed the Atlantic Ocean by three submarines and reached Argentina. In July-August, 1945 Hitler and his clique landed in the Rio Negro province near the Caleta de los Loros village and moved on further into Argentine. Allegedly, the same secret route prepared by SS chief Heinrich Himmler's people was later passed by Bormann, Mengele, and Eichmann... Basti detailed the journey of Hitler and Braun across Argentina assisted by local Nazi sympathizers, and described the couple's family life during which, despite the hardships of hiding, they even had children.
"Bariloche Nazi: Sitios Historicos Relacionados Al Nacionalsocialismo" became the favorite reading of Hitler's admirers. The two-storied mansion in Bariloche which, according to Basti, had served as Hitler's residence in 1945-1950 permanently attracts tourists. Other routes allegedly leading to the hideouts of Bormann, Mengele, and Eichmann had also become fairly popular. Paraguayan historian Mariano Llano expressed support for Basti's view as he also published a book on the rewarding theme entitled "Hitler, Nazi in Paraguay".
The flow of literature spreading the myth about Hitler's life in Latin America is unlikely to dwindle upon the publication of Basti's books. I am not trying to say that the fantasy genre has no right to exist. Demand for this sort of writings surges in crisis epochs when readers are hungry for whatever helps them to escape from reality.
Basti's books were promoted globally, and among other countries the waves of the campaign reached Russia. Companies are trying to obtain a license to make a movie based on the material. We should expect that in the future new authors will create sensations by broadening the list of survivors to eventually include all of Hitler's associates. To eliminate discrepancies, those who were executed following the Nuremberg Trials could be look-alikes of the actual Nazi leaders and fanatics eager to sacrifice their lives.....
Imagine the picture: a lovely estate in Argentina, a bunch of friends - Hitler, Bormann, Himmler, Göbbels, Ribbentrop, Keitel, Müller - at the dining table. Eva Braun wearing an apron is pouring coffee with cream and serving an apple pie. What an idyll...
The Argentine Axis
The story of the Nazi underground in South America goes back to the days when Hitler first began eyeing the sparsely-settled grasslands of Patagonia as an ideal spot for his Lebensraum project. He envisioned a Pampas empire of German towns, German farms, German ranches. He dreamed of a great agricultural-industrial colony on the other side of the Atlantic and vowed to make it the richest of all Germany's territorial possessions.
Argentina already had a large German minority, sympathetic to the ambitious goals of the Third Reich. German industries controlled much of the country's economy. German officers held high posts in the Argentine military forces. Almost every city and town had its German-Argentine "friendships societies" in imitation of Hitler's Stormtroops and youth groups. Furthermore, many officials in the Argentine federal government were outspoken Nazi sympathizers.
Not the least of these was a blustering, rabble-rousing Army colonel named Juan Domingo Peron. Peron paid a personal visit to Hitler in the spring of 1940 and was invited to accompany the Führer on his triumphal march into Paris. Vastly impressed by the mighty Nazi war machine, Per6n promised to set up a Nazi-style state in Argentina if Hitler would help him undermine the democratic government. Hitler promplty agreed. In the next four years, the Reich poured nearly $1 billion dollars into Argentina. Some of if was to finance Peron's power play. Some went to purchase thousands of square miles of fertile grasslands in Patagonia. And some was set aside for Nazi leaders, in case they should have to leave Germany in a hurry.
In 1943, S.S. Gen. Wilhelm von Faupel and Willi Köhn, chief of the Latin American section of the German Foreign Office, arrived in Argentina to assist Peron and his "colonels' group" in overthrowing the government of Ramon Castillo. Hitler's envoys traveled by U-Boat from Cadiz, Spain. Slipping through the Atlantic blockade, the submarine surfaced off the Argentine coast near Mar del Plata. A tugboat owned by a German-controlled shipping line picked up the two passengers and some forty large wooden crates from the sub. The boxes contained millions of dollars in gold, jewelry and art treasures stolen from occupied countries. The loot was to provide a war chest for Peron and a nest egg for Hitler's henchmen. General von Faupel also brought a trinket for Per6n's beautiful blonde wife, Evita. When they met in Buenos Aires, he fastened a diamond necklace around her throat as "a little token of the Führer's esteem".
Masterminded and financed by the Germans, the Argentine Putsch succeeded. Peron became vice president and turned Argentina into the most active Nazi center outside Germany. Soon U-Boats were making reguler runs between Spain and Argentina, transporting hundreds of Nazis to their new base of operations. General Arturo Rawson, nominal leader of the army coup that toppled the civilian government, admitted to a U.S. Embassy official in 1944 that Nazi technicians and party brass were setting up shop in his country. On 22 January 1945, Reichsführer S.S. Heinrich Himmler notified his police, Waffen S.S. and intelligence commanders that "certain party leaders" soon would be sent abroad on a secret mission. The following month, 340 high-ranking Nazis were ordered to Argentina to pave the way for the thousands who would soon follow.
Hitler still hoped for some miracle to stem, the advancing Allied tides, but his top aides were more realistic. Deputy Führer Bormann, Propaganda Minister Göbbels and Labor Minister Robert Ley met in the Berlin Bunker on 12 April 1945, and drew up secret plans for a postwar Nazi underground, with headquarters in Argentina. Ludwig Freude, Argentina's No. 1 Nazi, was placed in charge of the initial phase of this project. After the war, while Bormann was leading a guerrilla army in the Bavarian Alps, Freude found Argentine homes and jobs for hundreds of important Nazis, many of them wanted war criminals. The Allies demanded Freude's repatriation to Germany, but Peron's answer was a flat "no". Argentine authorities claimed Freude had been a citizen of their country since 1935. Actually, his request for Argentine citizenship was granted on 8 May 1935, but he did not take the required oath of citizenship until ten years later. His citizenship card was not issued until 18 December 1945, months after the Allies requested his deportation. A wealthy contractor, Freude built troop barracks for Peron and Nazi cells for Hitler. He trip in 1940 and was decorated by Hitler for his services to the Third Reich. Freude's son, Rudolf, also an active Nazi, became Per6n's confidential secretary after the military Junta took over. During Peron's 1946 campaign for President, Rudolf handled the campaign funds, including fat contributions from the Nazi underground.
Twelve days before the Presidential elections, the U.S. State Department issued a 32,000-word Blue Book that accused the Argentine regime of collaborating with the Axis enemy, espionage, intrigue, deceit, harboring Nazi war criminals and making a mockery of its pledge to the United Nations to "reaffirm faith in human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person".
"In Argentina," the Blue Book said, "the Germans have constructed a complete duplicate of the economic structure for war which they had in Germany". An unprecedented attack on an American nation, the Blue Book created a furor in the U.S. Congress and all Latin American governments. Its pro-Nazi charges almost severed diplomatic relations between Argentina and the United States. Specifically, it accused the Freudes of managing Nazi-Argentine affairs and Peron of giving the Nazis a western hemisphere base for building a new war machine. Peron ignored the State Department blast. Elected president, he set up a Hitler-style dictatorship with the help of his Nazi pals. An impressive array of German talent gathered around the Argentine Adolf. Peron first ignored, then denied the State Department charges. All he wanted, he insisted, was to head a free and democratic government "for the good of the common man". Elected President, he promplty set up a Hitler-style dicta- torship, abolished civil liberties and surrounded himself with an impressive array of Nazi talent. A list of his top appointments read like a Who's Who of the Third Reich. Former Nazis bossed the police, military, economic, diplomatic and propaganda branches of the Peron regime and virtually all other major departments. Some of his chief advisers were wanted war criminals. Some of the Nazis had entered Argentina illegally, but most came from neutral countries with forged identity papers and Red Cross passports.
For fear of international reaction, Per6n tried to keep his Swastika Cabinet secret. The Nazis received no official titles. They were merely "technical advisers"with complete authority over the government agencies to which, they were attached. Here are some of those who made the easy transition from Hitler's court to Casa Rosada, Per6n's presidential palace: Ante Pavelic, Nazi puppet ruler of Croatia, became boss of the Peronista secret police. On his staff at Buenos Aires Police Headquarters were Dido Kvaternik, his own former secret police chief, and several Gestapo graduates including S.S. Colonel Eugene Dollman, onetime Gestapo commander in Rome; Dr. Hans Koch and Dr. Hans Richner. A former Nazi intelligence officer, who boasts of escaping from the U.S. Counter-intelligence Corps in Germany by paying a lieutenant a $300 bribe, said: "There are so many former Gestapo men in the Argentine intelligence service that it is riskier to tell a joke about Peron in German than in Spanish". Professor Willy Tank, "Hitler's favorite aircraft designer," was in charge of some 350 German technicians at the Cordoba research station where jet fighters for the Argentine Air Force were born. Tank designed and built the Pulqui I and Pulqui II, Latin America's first jet fighters. German air aces like General Adolf Galland, Luftwaffe commander in the Battle of Britain; Colonel Hans-Ulrich Rudel and General Werner Baumbach served as Cordoba test pilots and Air Force advisers. Admiral Joachim Litzmann, former commander of German naval forces in the Black Sea, was adviser to the Argentine Navy. Under his unofficial command, it became the most powerful fleet south of the U.S. border. German generals whipped the Argentine Army into a goose-stepping replica of Hitler's Wehrmacht, complete with jack-boots and Nazi uniforms.
German scientists worked on atomic research projects, trying unsuccessfully to build an Argentine A-bomb. Heinrich Dörge, former president of Hitler's Reichsbank of industry, was technical adviser to Peron's mighty Central Bank. Empowered to seize every bank deposit in the nation and approve every loan, the Central Bank held an economic axe over the head of every individual and business in Argentina. The Peronist diplomatic corps had such expert advisers as Dr. Karl Klingenfuss, Dr. Hans Theiss, Dr. Bruno Leist and Dr. Alfred Ragalsky, all former officials of the Nazi Foreign Office. Klingenfuss had been deputy director of Department Deutschland, which handled "Jewish affairs." Johannes von Leers, one of the most fanatic anti-Semites in the Göbbels Propaganda Ministry, was Peron's adviser on propaganda and "public relations." Another Göbbels' lackey, Wilfred von Oven, was editor of "Deutsche La Plata Zeitung", one of several German dailies that carried on the old party line in the new homeland. German firms such as Siemens, Bau-Union, Gründ and Bilfiner, supposedly "confiscated" by Argentine authorities during the war, received fat public works contracts. New high-ways, schools, airports, bridges, public buildings, housing projects and military installations helped put German industry back on its feet. These firms supplied postwar jobs for thousands of Germans who were channeled to Argentina by the Nazi underground.
At first, the war criminals remained in the background. Then, as Peron's iron grip tightened and crushed all demo- cratic opposition, the mass murderers came out of hiding. Dr. Josef Mengele, the Auschwitz extermination expert, opened a chemical laboratory in Buenos Aires without even bothering to affect an alias. Martin Bormann, slightly more discreet, left his Patagonian hideaway and moved to the capital with his pistol-packing entourage. He rented an office at 868 Avenido Martin Haedo, in downtown Buenos Aires. This inconspicuous suite, with the name of a German-Argentine export-import firm on the door, was the nest from which "Die Spinne" wove its worldwide web. By 1949, Die Spinne's global activities had attracted the attention of intelligence services and newspapers in several nations. In Germany, the "Kölnische Rundschau" disclosed that many convicted Norwegian Quislings and their counterparts in other European lands had joined German war criminals in the Argentine. The "Jewish Chronicle" said the mass migration was "directed by a powerful underground organization" with headquarters in Buenos Aires. "Reynolds News" sent an investigator to Rome late in 1950 to check on Nazi activities there. He uncovered a branch office of Die Spinne. Camouflaged as an Argentine import-export agency, it was run by the famous Colonel Otto Skorzeny, Hitler's commando chief. Skorzeny reportedly arranged the escapes of many Nazi criminals who took off for Argentina from Rome and Madrid. A fugitive from justice himself, Skorzeny apparently was the chief European dispatcher for the underground railway.
Die Spinne [German for "The Spider"] was a post-WWII organisation credited with helping certain Nazi war criminals escape justice. Its existence is still debated today. It is believed by some historians to be a different name [or a branch] of the Nazi German ODESSA organization established during the collapse of the Third Reich, similar to 'Kameradenwerk', and 'Brüderschaft, devoted to helping German war criminals flee Europe. It was led in part by Otto Skorzeny, Hitler's commando chief, as well as Nazi Intelligence officer Reinhard Gehlen. Die Spinne helped as many as 600 former SS men escape from Germany to Spain, Argentina, Paraguay, Chile, Bolivia, the Middle East, and other countries.
Die Spinne was established by Skorzeny using the aliases Robert Steinbacher and Otto Steinbauer, and supported by either Nazi funds or, according to some sources, Austrian Intelligence. Later, Skorzeny, Gehlen, and their network of collaborators had gained significant influence in parts of Europe and Latin America. Skorzeny travelled between Francoist Spain and Argentina, where he acted as an adviser to President Juan Perón and bodyguard of Eva Perón, while fostering an ambition for the "Fourth Reich" centred in Latin America.
According to Glenn Infield, in "The Secrets of the SS," the idea for the Spinne network began in 1944 as Hitler's chief intelligence officer Reinhard Gehlen foresaw a possible downfall of the Third Reichdue to Nazi military failures in Russia. T.H. Tetens, expert on German geopolitics and member of the US War Crimes Commission in 1946-47, referred to a group overlapping with die Spinne as the Führungsring, "a kind of political Mafia, with headquarters in Madrid... serving various purposes". The Madrid office built up what was referred to as a sort of Fascist International, per Tetens. According to Tetens the German leadership also included Dr Hans Globke, who had written the official commentary on the Nuremberg Laws. Globke held the important position of Director of the German Chancellery from 1953-63, serving as adviser to Konrad Adenauer.
From 1945-50, Die Spinne's leader Skorzeny facilitated the escape of Nazi war criminals from war-criminal prisons to Memmingen, Bavaria, through Austria and Switzerland into Italy. Certain US military authorities allegedly knew of the escape, but took no action. The Central European headquarters of Die Spinne as of 1948 was in Gmunden, Austria.
A coordinating office for international Die Spinne operations was established in Madrid by Skorzeny under the control of Francisco Franco, whose victory in the Spanish Civil War had been aided by economic and military support from Hitler and Mussolini. When a Die Spinne Nazi delegation visited Madrid in 1959, Franco stated, "Please regard Spain as your second Fatherland". Skorzeny used Die Spinne's resources to allow notorious Nazi concentration camp doctor Josef Mengele to escape to Argentina in 1949.
Skorzeny requested assistance from German industrialist tycoon Alfried Krupp, whose company had controlled 138 private concentration camps under the Third Reich; the assistance was granted in 1951. Skorzeny became Krupp's representative in industrial business ventures in Argentina, a country which harboured a strong pro-Nazi political element throughout World War II and afterwards, regardless of a nominal declaration of loyalty to the Allies as World War II ended. With the help of Die Spinne leaders in Spain, by the early 1980s Die Spinne had become influential in Argentina, Chile and Paraguay, including ties involving Paraguayan dictator Alfredo Stroessner.
War Crimes investigator Simon Wiesenthal claimed Josef Mengele had stayed at the notorious Colonia Dignidad Nazi colony in Chile in 1979, and ultimately found harbour in Paraguay until his death. As of the early 1980s, Die Spinne's Mengele was reported by Infield to have been advising Stroessner's ethnic German Paraguayan police on how to reduce native Paraguayan Indians in the Chaco Region to slave labour. A wealthy, powerful post-World-War-II underground Nazi political contingent held sway in Argentina as of the late 1960s, which included many ethnic German Nazi immigrants and their descendants.
The year 1950 was the target date for an international revival of Nazism. From their Argentine sanctuary, the spidery Bormann and his lieutenants sent out orders for a test of strength. The call to arms was sounded in "Der Weg", Die Spinne's official mouthpiece, edited by von Leers and published by Dürer Verlag, a Buenos Aires printing firm headed by Eberhard Fritsch, former leader of the Argentine Hitler Youth. To help rekindle the Nazi bonfires, Fritsch also published new editions of "Mein Kampf" in German and Spanish, memoirs of high-placed Nazi officials and a steady stream of poison pen propaganda. Sir Oswald Mosley, Hitler's British disciple, flew to Buenos Aires early in the year for a top-level conference at Die Spinne headquarters. Then he hurried to Italy with a crackpot proposal for former Italian Fascists climb on the retooled Nazi bandwagon. Mussolini's old cronies wanted no part of another Nazi alliance. But Die Spinne wasn't prepared to take "no" for an answer. In April, rightwing Argentine journalists Tullio Abelli and Francesco di Giglio arrived in Rome with a "manifesto" urging all neo-Nazi and neo-fascist groups to unite. Six months later, youth groups from nine countries, including Argentina and Spain, held a neo-Nazi congress in Rome. Delegates greeted Anna Maria Mussolini, Il Duce's oldest daughter, with wild cheers and a fascist salute. But police booted her out of Italy and she went to visit her brother, Vittorio, in Argentina. At about the same time, a branch of the Nazi underground called the International Confederation of Non-Marxist Social- ists held a conference in Madrid. Among those present was the busy Colonel Skorzeny. Conventioneering Nazis then held a fourteen nation parley at Malmoe, Sweden, another European terminal for the underground railway. The vast intrigue of 1950 even extended to Africa, both North and South, and Asia. India's intelligence service turned up evidence linking the Hindu Mahasabha, rightwing extremist party involved in Mahatma Gandhi's assassination, to Die Spinne. Underground couriers had transported Nazi funds from Argentina to Tangier, where the money was given to Mahasabha agents. The exact purpose of this mysterious transaction was never discovered. Apparently it was part of the overall Nazi plan to win as many friends and influence as many peo- ple as possible. Despite all the activity, the 1950 effort to form a Nazi International never quite got off the ground. Police, counter-Intelligence agents, newspapers and anti-Nazi public officials showed Die Spinne that the world outside Argentina hadn't forgotten or forgiven the horrors of World War II.
No major move of the Nazi underground went undetected that fateful year - except the steady movement of the underground railway. Skorzeny kept the Escape Express rolling and arranged reservations for four special passengers who no longer used their family name, Eichmann. Adolf Eichmann, his wife and sons were greeted at the Buenos Aires airport by one of his old partners in Mass Murder Inc., Ante Pavelic. As a secret police official, Pavelic had no trouble whisking the new arrivals through Customs and Immigration. Then he drove them to a downtown hotel in his official limousine. Eichmann's first Argentine papers, in the name of Ricardo Klement, were issued by Pavelic on 2 October 1950. Next, Die Spinne got him a job with Capri engineering firm, a German-Argentine enterprise that employed many S.S. veter- ans and fugitive war criminals. To avoid attracting attention in the Argentine capital, Eichmann was sent to a remote hydro-electric project at Salta, then to Tucuman, a city of about 200,000 in northwest Argentina not far from the borders of Chile, Bolivia and Paraguay. Eichmann checked in at Tucuman district police head-quarters, where he was registered as Ricardo Klement. He also was fingerprinted, but his prints later disappeared from police files at both Tucuman and Buenos Aires.
Eichmann wasn't lonely in his new hideout. His family joined him and he found many old Nazi pals, including former members of his own Gestapo staff, among the city's large German population. In 1954, rumors of a pending revolt against Peron caused Eichmann to move again. He made two quick trips to Paraguay to survey possible escape routes. Apparently, he decided Paraguay was not the ideal place for a Nazi killer. When the Argentine revolt finally came in 1955, the Eichmanns fled north to Bolivia, where there were several Nazi strongholds.
With the passing of time, Nazi-hunting faded in Paraguay.
What may be a final flurry was provoked by the discovery in 1993 of the archives of the Alfredo Stroessner-era secret police. After the dictator was deposed in a 1989 coup, Paraguayan police officials steadfastly maintained that all the files had been destroyed.
But two tons of archives were discovered last December at a police station outside of Asuncion. In February, a researcher found a 1961 report signed by the former head of the Interior Ministry's foreign affairs department.
According to the report, Martin Bormann, entered Paraguay in 1956 and died in Asuncion in 1959. In Paraguay, the official wrote, he lived in Hohenau.
A newspaper in Paraguay reported in 1993 that Bormann had lived in that country for three years, and had died in Asuncion on 15 February 1959, and was buried in a nearby town.
Other wanted Nazis headed for the mountains and jungles of Brazil, Chile, Peru and Uruguay. Most of them returned to Buenos Aires a year later and remained there, conducting business as usual, until Eichmann's capture in 1960 caused another mass vanishing act. A few left the Argentine for good after Peron's downfall.
-- Paul Meskil, "Hitler's Heirs: Where are They Now?"
Nazi War Criminals Find it Easy to Hide
The Newcastle Sun [NSW]
28 May 1953
FRANKFURT - Hunted war criminals, neo-Nazis and ex-Wehrmacht generals are finding it a simple business to hide in West Germany or to escape from the country, according to evidence.
The combined resources of the British, French and United States Security and Intelligence forces and West German police seem to be unable to make an early arrest of an escaped war criminal or a prominent ex-general wanted by the Allied or West German authorities.
There is close collaboration between Allied and West German authorities in a few cases, but in the main they go their separate ways. This is because each side operates on a different legal basis, the Allies still as the occupying Powers and the Germans still as the occupied.
The most prominent Germans for whom various authorities have recently been hunting are Nazi SS General Heinz Bernhard Lammerding, Major General Otto Ernst Remer, and Franz Rademacher. The last two are reported to have fled abroad. Lammerding vanished earlier this year from his Düsseldorf home in the British Zone shortly before the French asked the British for his extradition. Lammerding is wanted by the French in connection with the execution of 99 people at Tulle, France, in 1944. He was sentenced to death in his absence by a military tribunal at Bordeaux, but fled abroad early last month. The French also asked the American authorities in Germany to look for Lammerding in their zone. He has been reported at various places since his disappearance, but all efforts to trace him have so far failed.
Heinz Lammerding was a commander of the SS Division Das Reich and, in 1953, was tried in France for war crimes, for ordering two massacres in 1944; at Tulle and at Oradour-sur-Glane. He was sentenced to death in absentia by the court of Bordeaux, but he was never extradited by West Germany nor was he ever sentenced by a German court.
According to Danny S. Parker, in "Hitler's Warrior: The Life and Wars of SS Colonel Jochen Peiper," Lammerding had already been tried in West Germany, convicted of war crimes and had served a prison sentence. He therefore was not subject to extradition under the Bonn constitution, much to the consternation of the French. They threatened to send in a commando unit to seize him as the Israelis did in the case of Adolf Eichmann. Before this could occur, Lammerding died, in 1971.
Late in March the Prosecutor-General of Brunswick, Lower Saxony, issued a warrant for the arrest of Otto Remer, the "star attraction" of the now banned neo-Nazi Socialist Reich Party. Remer, who was promoted by Hitler from major to Major-general for his part in putting down the German officers' bomb plot against Hitler's life in July, 1944, had disappeared. This month Herr Franz Blücher, the West German Vice-Chancellor, announced Remer had fled to Egypt, but he did not know how he got away. Remer was last seen on 2 February at the railway station of his home-town of Varel, in Lower Saxony. His wife, who had accompanied him to the station, told reporters on 11 March at her home that her husband had gone to a place, which she refused to name, to undergo a cure for tuberculosis. Remer was to have reported to Oldenburg prison, Lower Saxony, on 27 February to serve a three month prison term. It was imposed by a German court last year for slandering people who took part in the July plot. He was given a month's extension because of ill health. It was during this period that he apparently fled overseas.
In Egypt, Otto Remer served as an advisor to Gamal Abdel Nasser and worked with other expatriate Germans assisting Arab states with weapons development.
Remer returned to Germany in the 1980s, creating the German Freedom Movement which advocated a reunified country and the expulsion of NATO. It was an umbrella organization for 23 underground Nazi organisations and allowed Remer the opportunity to create a new generation of followers.
From 1991 to 1994, Remer put out his own publication, the "Remer-Depesche". Remer was sentenced to 22 months of imprisonment in October 1992, for writing and publishing a number of articles that were said to incite "racial hatred", through their questioning of the Holocaust. His complaint over alleged violations of fairness of trial and freedom of speech was unanimously rejected by the European Commission on Human Rights. He filed numerous appeals, and eventually went into exile in Spain, prior to his actually being incarcerated, in February 1994.
The high court of Spain ruled against appeals made by the German government to extradite Remer, claiming that he had not committed any crime under the Spanish law. He remained a wanted man in Germany until his 1997 death in Spain at 85.
Franz Rademacher was sentenced to three years' gaol by a German court in Nuremberg in March, 1952, for aiding and abetting the killing of 1300 Serbian Jews in Yugoslavia during the war. Rademacher has disappeared and German police have since found no clues as to his whereabouts but there have been persistent reports that he is now in the Argentine.
Franz Rademacher was a diplomat with the German Foreign Office, serving at the German embassy in Montevideo, Uruguay until May 1940. In 1940, he was selected to lead Referat D III, or Judenreferat, of Ribbentrop's Foreign Affairs Ministry. His direct superior was Nazi diplomat Martin Luther. It was during his tenure in this office, throughout the spring and summer of 1940, that Rademacher kick-started the Madagascar Plan, which sought to forcibly deport all of Europe's Jews to the island of Madagascar. He jousted briefly with Adolf Eichmann over organizational control of the plan, which would shortly be abandoned amidst Germany's changing fortunes in World War II.
In October 1941, he was responsible for mass deportations and executions of Serbian Jews. He also had a hand in the deportation of Jews from France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. After his visit to Belgrade, Rademacher filed an expense claim stating that the official purpose of the trip was to "liquidate the Jews". In 2010, the German Foreign Ministry released an 880-page report on the diplomats of the Third Reich entitled "Das Amt und die Vergangenheit" (The Ministry and the Past), which mentioned that particular expense claim, bringing Rademacher a degree of latter-day notoriety.
In 1943, Rademacher became embroiled in Luther's attempted coup to oust Ribbentrop. He was dismissed from the Foreign Affairs Ministry, and sent to fight in the navy as an officer for the remainder of the war ending up with Admiral Dönitz' cypher-breaking unit at Flensburg-Mürwik under the command of Captain Kupfer.
Immediately following the war this unit was put at the disposal of Sefton Delmer's news agency in Hamburg. Rademacher was arrested by British military police in November 1945, who ultimately released him. He was eventually brought to trial in Germany in February 1952 for the murders he supervised in Serbia. However, with the aid of Nazi sympathizers, he fled to Syria in September of that year while released on bail. A German court convicted him in absentia for the murder of Serbian Jews, and sentenced him to 3 years and 5 months imprisonment.
In 1963, he was arrested in Syria on charges of spying, but was released in 1965 due to ill health. He returned voluntarily to Germany on 30 November 1966, where he was arrested at the Nuremberg airport. Reportedly ill at the time, he was taken to a prison hospital in Bayreuth, while awaiting prosecution in Bamberg. He was again convicted of war crimes and sentenced to five and half years' imprisonment. However, his sentence was never carried out, the court having considered it already served.
In 1971, a German high court in Karlsruhe overruled this judgment against Rademacher, and ordered a new trial for his crimes during World War II. He died on 17 March 1973, before proceedings began.
Special book-length issue of Police Gazette's "Hitler is Alive" series
There hasn't been an investigative expose in the past twenty-five years that rocked the world more than the great series of 'Hitler Is Alive' articles published by the "Police Gazette" in 1951-54. The "Police Gazette" findings were reprinted throughout the world. World leaders of that era, including Winston Churchill and President Truman read the "Police Gazette" 'Hitler Is Alive' series with avid interest. In the spring of 1952, U . S . Senator Thomas C. Hennings Jr. of Missouri, asked Dwight D. Eisenhower whether the revelations about Hitler's disappearance published in the "Police Gazette" were valid. General Eisenhower replied: "I cannot disprove any of the facts in the "Police Gazette" articles. We have been unable to unearth one bit of tangible evidence of Hitler's death ... many people are of the opinion that Hitler escaped from Berlin".
Twenty-five years have passed since the "Police Gazette" 'Hitler Is Alive' series was published. Hitler who was born in Branau, Austria, 20 April 1889, would now be 87. It is interesting to note that Admiral Karl Dönitz, who Hitler appointed as his successor, recently celebrated his 85th birthday. And Rudolf Hess, Deputy Führer, and Albert Speer, Hitler's munitions minister, are still alive.
As Russian troops were closing in on Berlin in April 1945, the Führer and his aides masterminded an escape plot that thwarted their capture by the Allied powers. Here are the full details of how some of the top Nazis managed to disappear. It is an episode of World War II that still excites the imagination of today's generation.
Before getting into the Hitler disappearance, let us provide you with some background information which we hope will give you a word-portrait of how the Hitler mystery began.
The world first heard Hitler was dead when Grand Admiral Dönitz announced over the Hamburg radio on 1 May 1945 that the Führer had died a "hero's death," leading his troops in defense of Berlin, and that Hitler had appointed him as his successor as Reichs President and commander-in-chief of all Nazi military forces. It was now in Dönitz' power to negotiate Germany's surrender with the Allies. This announcement surprisedthe Allied world. The British Foreign Office did not believe Dönitz' account of the Führer's death. They knew that Hitler did not die a "hero's death".
When the Reds entered Berlin, and assumed command they set up a special guard around the Chancellery and assigned an unit of experts to search through the ruins of the building, and took into custody many of Hitler's servants and minor officials who were with the Führer in the Bunker.
The first new information came from the Russians on 4 May 1945 when they announced the capture of Hans Fritzsche, Göbbels' Deputy, who reported the suicide of Göbbels and his family. Fritzsche also declared that he had heard rumors that Hitler had committed suicide, and that his body was set on fire 30 April 1945.
It wasn't until Erich Kempka, Hitler's chauffeur, in Berchtesgaden on 20 June 1945, Erich Kempka made a statement for American interrogator George R. Allen, the Counterintelligence agent of the 101st Airborne Division, that the first "eye-witness" account of any of the events connected with the death of the Führer, was obtained. Many newspapers throughout the world published Kempka's statements as an authoritative report, thereby deceiving the public into assuming his account was official. The truth is, Kempka's statements were subsequently discredited.
Kempka declared that on 30 Aprilalthough he felt unable to say that this was the date "with complete sureness"at precisely 2:40 pm, SS Sturmbannführer Otto Günsche called him at the Reich Chancellery garage, asking him to bring five cans of petrol over to the Bunker. When he arrived at the Bunker he saw Bormann carrying the body of awoman whom he believed to be Eva Braun. Bormann gave the body to Kempka to deliver to Günsche who took it into the Chancellery garden. Kempka also testified that he saw Linge and some other S.S. officers carry the corpse of a man, the upper half of whose body was wrapped in a gray blanket. Kempka simply assumed that the corpse he had seen Linge carrying was Hitler's, for he noticed "the long black trousers and the black shoes which the Führer usually wore with his field-gray uniform jacket".
The two bodies were placed in a ditch, drenched with gasoline, and set on fire. The mourners, who included Bormann, Burgdorf, Göbbels, Linge and Günsche, then returned to the Bunker. Kempka had no definite knowledge that the dead man was Adolf Hitler. The body Kempka thought was Hitler's definitely was not that of the Führer.
On 4 July, Kempka made a second statement in which he stated that he was now certain that Hitler had been cremated on 30 April 1945.
The Russians dug up a number of bodies in the Chancellery garden, all wearing clothes with the Führer's name sewed in the lining. The important fact, conceded by every Allied Intelligence officer, is that Adolf Hitler's body was never found - only corpses dressed in Hitler's clothes.
After many weeks of thorough investigation, Soviet Marshall Gregory Zhukov flatly announced in Berlin:
"We have found no corpse that could be Hitler's. Hitler had good opportunities of getting away He could have taken off at the very last moment for there was an airfield at his disposal".
Colonel General Nikolai E. Berzarin, the Soviet Berlin Commander, declared:
"My personal opinion is that Hitler disappeared into Europe".
Berzarin was the Russian official who revealed that several bodies with Hitler's name sewed in the clothes were found in the Reichchancellery, but not one was that of the Führer.
HITLER IS ALIVE!
Officially Adolf Hitler and his mistress Eva Braun, were reported to have taken their departure from life in a double suicide pact. The bodies, placed in a ditch filled with gasoline, were supposedly burned in the courtyard of the Reichschancellery.
In this Special Collector's Edition the "Police Gazette" reprints the original sensational findings of an investigation made throughout Europe and South America by competent investigators in 1951-1954 into the strange mystery of Adolf Hitler's alleged death. This world-wide investigation unearthed amazing revelations.
This world-wide investigation unearthed amazing revelations to displace this theory. Former heads of the Wehrmacht, who are spread all over the world, and certain Nazis, still being sought, were interviewed. The extensive inquiry reached into the far corners of the world.
So sensational and world-shaking are the results of this probe that the "Police Gazette" felt obligated to present all the data to its readers in a series of exclusive articles:.
When news of the probe reached Lieutenant Heinz Schäffer, former commander of the German Submarine U-977, he came voluntarily from Argentina, where he now lives, to the Paris office of the investigators. He was the commander who surrendered to Argentine authorities at Mar del Plata on 17 August 1945, after having spent three and a half months on a mysterious sea voyage.
The German naval officer denied spiriting Hitler away, but could not or would not explain his long and mysterious submarine voyage at war's end. Nor would he disclose the unexplained luxury condition of one U-Boat.
Lieutenant Commander Schäffer made the following statement which, incidentally, in no way invalidates the findings which will be presented in these articles.
"It has been claimed that I carried Adolf Hitler, Eva Braun and Martin Bormann aboard my submarine. That is untrue. Also, I was subjected to lengthy interrogations on this point by the American and British authorities. Finally, the latter accepted my explanations and freed me and my crew.
"The truth is that I went to Mar del Plata, like the U-530 which preceded us, in order to escape internment.
"At the time I received command of the U-977, in April 1945, the Russians were approaching Berlin and the Americans already had occupied most of the French ports. My superiors ordered me to Norway. I arrived there the day Admiral Dönitz took over as head of the German Reich. On 2 May we received orders to surface, hoist the white flag, return to our bases and wait there for the Allies.
"I told my crew that we had two possibilities:
(1) to scuttle our submarine in the Channel, make for the English coast in our lifeboats and surrender;
(2) make for a country which had remained friendly to Germany.
"Since I had friends in Argentina, I suggested that country which was approved by the crew. Sixteen of the men who were married preferred to return. I put them ashore on the Norwegian coast and then turned the bow of my vessel towards South America".
We asked Commander Schäffer at this point: "Did you have sufficient provisions for such a long voyage?"
He said, "Yes, only a few days earlier we had taken aboard cases of canned foods at a depot in Denmark".
A lucky coincidence, indeed.
Heinz Schäffer then went on:
"I knew that the ocean was patrolled by American planes. For that reason I decided to travel submersed. Our boat was equipped with Schnorchel which enabled us to travel under the surface by using our Diesels.
"We could have lightened our boat by shedding our torpedos. However, I held on to them. I was afraid we might be charged with having sunk ships after the armistice.
"We traveled submersed for sixty-six days. Sixty-six days of superhuman suffering.
"My crew of 31 sailors took turns in falling sick.
"By the time we had left the danger zone they had been reduced to human debris.
"We surfaced in the vicinity of the Cape Verde Islands.
"From there on the voyage was pleasant and on 17 August we entered the Port of Mar del Plata".
Nobody maintains that Hitler was aboard the U-977. Our staff investigator also established that fact. However, as we shall see very soon, the U-977 as well as the U-530 were stated to play different roles than that of transport vessels.
The statement of Commander Heinz Schäffer fails to shed light on several points on which we vainly tried to get satisfactory explanations.
For instance, is it plausible for a captain to condemn his crew to two months of superhuman suffering merely to escape captivity?
On the other hand, the U-977 left Norway 2 May and arrived around 8 July in the vicinity of the Cape Verde Islands. Why did the vessel take two and a half months to reach Argentina? We stress these baffling details, because in the course of the series of articles which starts in this issue, the staff of investigators will present a proper explanation.
Surrender by the U-530
"Hello," an excited voice came over the phone. "This is the 'United Press'. A German submarine has just surrendered to Argentine Naval authorities in the port of Mar del Plata".
This conversation took place 10 July 1945. The capitulation of the Reich already was history and the three Great Powers were making last-minute preparations for their meeting at Potsdam. Thus it was no wonder that this unexpected news created a sensation not only in Buenos Aires, but also in London and Washington.
Subsequent stories confirmed that first piece of news and around noontime an official communique of the Navy Ministry announced the vessel in question was the German submarine U-530.
The commander's papers identified him as Captain Otto Wermuth. He was the last to leave his boat. On shore he handed over a small valise containing the flag of the submarine as well as the ship's papers. His youth created general attention. It was later learned that he was only 25 years of age. His second in command, Captain Karl Felix Schuller, was still younger, only 22. Both officers and enlisted men seemed unusually young, some of them mere children.
The crew of the U-530 appeared tired, but not undernourished. The first officials who came aboard established that the boat's entire complement of 54 men still had a rather large store of food, despite their long voyage. In turn, a surprisingly small amount of fuel was found on board the submarine. Incidentally, at the moment of surrender the vessel was partially disarmed. It lacked the forward (bow) cannon as well as two large-caliber anti-aircraft guns. These it was supposed, had been dumped overboard when the captain had decided to surrender. On the other hand, the hull of the submarine was partially denuded of paint and generally covered with dirt, sure signs of an extended voyage on the high seas.
No important Nazi bigwig arrived on the U-530, the Buenos Aires evening papers announced in large headlines, thus furnishing a clear answer to the question asked by all. Meanwhile, another question raised was whether the U-530 was responsible for the sinking of the Brazilian cruiser 'Bahia', whose survivors arrived that same morning at the port of Recife. On the other hand, rumors were heard everywhere to the effect that some of the Nazi Chieftains had landed on the coast of Patagonia. These landings, it was alleged, had been made by means of rubber boats in the region of Necochea.
Four and a Half Months at Sea
The next day, the mystery was cleared up by a second communique issued by the Navy Ministry which stated as follows:
(1) Investigations established that the German submarine which surrendered to the authorities of the Mar del Plata base was not responsible for the sinking of the Brazilian cruiser 'Bahia'.
(2) No German political or military leaders were on board the aforementioned submarine.
(3) Prior to having surrendered to the authorities, the submarine did not disembark anybody along the Argentine coast.
(4) All persons who did come ashore were members of the crew of the submarine, in accordance with the official register submitted.
At Mar del Plata the arrival of the German submarine created unusual excitement.
Following inspection visits by the Naval Attaches of Great Britain and the United States, it was learned that in accordance with information furnished by the Captain the U-530 had left Germany on 19 February 1945 and sailed northward to Norway. From there it left on 13 March in the direction of the North Atlantic. When the surrender order issued by Admiral Dönitz became known on board, Captain Wermuth decided to continue his voyage to the coast of Argentina and surrender at Mar del Plata.
These statements, together with additional information concerning the person of Captain Wermuth and his career as submarine commander were soon published by the papers. Yet, there was the fact that the U-530 had traveled on the high seas for almost four and a half months.
This fact, in itself, could not fail to attract considerable attention. The modern German submarines like the U-530 which had been constructed in 1942 were equipped with completely new devices which enabled them to cruise for months on end far away from their bases.
They were Schnorchel-equipped, the Schnorchel being a respiratory device which made it possible for the submarine to stay submersed and travel under water for 70 consecutive days. Thus, it was not the fact of the prolonged voyage on the high-seas which attracted so much attention, but the question which logically followed, namely:
What had been the activities of the U-530 during those four and a half months, from the day it had left its base to the day of its surrender at Mar del Plata?
This question was asked not only at Buenos Aires but also in London. There the news of the submarine's surrender created consternation at the Admiralty, whose spokesman had only recently stated that the seas of the globe could again be traversed in absolute safety. When no official communique was forthcoming in the British capital, a naval commentator did not hesitate to speak of "an ocean mystery which is open to numerous conjectures". One month before it had been assumed that the last German submarine had been accounted for. Then, on 3 June, one of these vessels was disarmed by its crew off the northern coast of Portugal.
The news of the surrender of the U-530 created in London the effect of a bombshell and promptly provoked lively disputes in naval circles, where the presence of a German submarine in Argentine waters was explained by one of two theories:
(1) Under orders of its fanatical commander, the submarine had continued to carry on the war on its own account as long as possible, without heeding the orders issued by Dönitz.
(2) The submarine had been selected for the secret transport of a high Nazi personage to Argentina with the hope of finding refuge there.
Soon it became evident that both theories were ill founded. Few facts were known concerning the political convictions of Commander Wermuth. However, inspections of the technical installations on board the vessel showed beyond doubt that the U-530 not only had not sunk the 'Bahia', but had in fact not engaged in any warlike action during the last phase of its voyage, that is, at least not since the day when the capitulation order had been issued.
With regard to the second theory, the official Argentine statement was absolutely clear: it was based on the result of inquiries carried out in the most conscientious manner. Yet, one question remained unanswered: What had the U-530 been doing during its long voyage and why had it come to Argentina to surrender?
There seemed to be no satisfactory answer to this question nor to several others that cropped up in that connection. The crew of the submarine underwent repeated questioning, with no result. Their statements agreed perfectly with the documents produced and with the stories of their officers. Their replies were perfectly co-ordinated, as if they had been carefully rehearsed or, and there is always that possibility, as if they actually embodied the truth.
Nevertheless, three days after the arrival of the U-530 at Mar del Plata only a handful of people believed in the declarations of Captain Wermuth and his crew. For in these uniform recitals there were several obscure points which yet required explanation. Without going into any lengthy investigation, there was the obvious fact that the submarine could not possibly have undertaken the long and dangerous voyage from Norway to Mar del Plata for no other reason than to arrive on the hospitable shores of Argentina, to quote the Captain of the vessel.
The Mystery Cigarettes
Certain details continued to arouse the public interest. The U-530 was of limited tonnage. Its normal complement could not have exceeded 27 men. Since the second year of the war, German submarines of the U-530 type used to carry no more than 18 and sometimes only 16 men, in view of the lack of manpower which permanently beset the Reich submarine arm. Why, then, did the U-530 at the time of its surrender carry three times the complement of the war years?
Why did Captain Wermuth's vessel carry 54 men aboard? Why was the majority of the crew so surprisingly young?
Experts who inspected the vessel were able to establish that the supplies on board were rather ample even for such a large crew. They also found that the ship carried only an insignificant number of torpedoes and other munitions. In all probability, the war materiel had been reduced in quantity so as to gain space for such a large crew as well as for the necessary food supplies.
Another mystery which balked satisfactory clarification: one compartment of the submarine yielded a rather large quantity of cigarettes. The naval inspectors were surprised to find such a large stock of cigarettes on board the U-530. And without doubt they raised eyebrows when Captain Wermuth told them that on his arrival he still had 10 cartons of cigarettes per man aboard. As a result, there were found 540 cartons of cigarettes on board and maybe more.
Imagine the surprise of naval technicians in view of the fact that no smoking is permitted in the interior of a submarine.
As a rule, submarine crews don't smoke and the Germans are no exception to that. And this abstinence became quite evident during the internment of the U-530 crew near Mar del Plata at a summer camp, which happened to be vacant: they didn't smoke, even though they had disembarked.
All these facts indicated that the U-530 was truly an unusual submarine. It carried a large complement, plenty of food supplies, a large store of cigarettes and little war materiel. It had not conformed to the capitulation orders and it had undertaken such a long and perilous voyage for the sole purpose of surrendering to the Argentine port authorities.
Truly, this story smelled phony. On the other hand, the truth failed to be unearthed. Officers and men of the U-530 continued to repeat their initial statements with the precision of a phonograph record and without any contradictions. Yet, the naval authorities dared not be satisfied with these well-tailored stories.
And so, on the morning of 13 July, the Argentine flag was hoisted on the conning tower of the German submarine and Argentine war vessels and planes left the Mar del Plata base to search the coastal waters for other German naval unit.
A Phony Captain?
That search yielded no positive results. Investigations were also undertaken throughout the Necochea region where several persons insisted they had observed the landing of a rubber lifeboat several days prior to the surrender of the submarine. A new crop of rumors sprang up but soon subsided. Yet some people persisted that Captain Wermuth was not the real captain of the submarine.
The most persistent rumors concerned alleged landings of Nazi bigwigs on the coast of Patagonia. True, in view of the enormous length of the Argentine coastline, the U-530 could have carried out shore landings by means of rubber lifeboats. However, the results of the investigations did not support such theories by a single shred of evidence. During the period which has elapsed since, all conjectures of this sort have been thoroughly demolished. It is safe to state that beyond any reasonable doubt, no person was put ashore along the Argentine coast by the U-530.
If such conjectures had proved well founded, it would have undoubtedly caused new investigations and certainly would have resulted in official steps on the part of the United States and Great Britain with the Argentine Government.
On 14 July 1945 a naval commentator declared: "The truth concerning the U-530 will be found only in the German naval archives". He is probably right.
It is not known whether the Allies succeeded in getting hold of the pertinent Reich Naval records and whether those records explained the nature of the last mission of the submarine seized at Mar del Plata. News dispatches announced that the American and British Governments would hold consultations on the case of the U-530 on the basis of reports from their respective naval attaches at Buenos Aires.
But a few weeks later it was learned that the submarine which had surrendered at Mar del Plata actually was not the real U-530 at all.
Several days later, on 19 July 1945 Admiral Eberhardt God, Commander in Chief of Submarine Operations issued this statement at Kiel, Germany:
"The U-530 did not leave Germany on 19 February 1945. As a matter of fact, the boat was still at Kiel on 3 March. On that date it left Kiel for Norway".
This statement by Admiral Godt later confirmed by Helmuth Heye, former Commander of the German Battle Cruiser 'Admiral Hipper' and ex-Chief of Small Combat units, which included mini-submarines, combat divers, etc., squarely contradicted the stories told by Capt. Otto Wermuth, Commandant of the U-530, to the Argentine authorities.
Did Wermuth Lie?
Wermuth's tale was contradicted even more strongly by another German naval officer, Capt. Kurt Langer who until the middle of 1944 had been in command of the U-530.
In an interview with newspapermen, Langer stated that the U-530 actually leaked water at the seams and could no longer be considered seaworthy.
In fact, he went on, the U-530 was an unlucky submarine:
"Its stern had been smashed by an American tanker on Christmas Day of 1943 when I was attacked on the eastern shore of the Panama Canal. It was a sheer miracle that I managed to get back to my base".
"It seems unbelievable to me that such an old and worn ship could have made the trip to the Argentine Coast.
"If Hitler and Eva Braun escaped from Germany aboard a submarine," he concluded, "they hardly could have made this voyage aboard the U-530".
But the U-530 which surrendered at Mar del Plata, was not at all an old and worn ship which leaked water through its seams. As a matter of fact, it was a recently designed, completely new boat and in excellent condition to have made the long journey across the Atlantic. Thus, all evidence points to the fact that the U-530 which surrendered at Mar del Plata was not the same submarine of which Captain Langer spoke. In other words, the ship at Mar del Plata was a different unit, though of the same class as the original U-530. Somewhere along the line, a switch had been made and a new ship had been substituted for the old U-530.
What reason was there for this switch?
Obviously, it was to confound any subsequent investigations. What actually seemed to have happened was this: while the real U-530, that "old and worn ship", was being overhauled at Kiel for departure scheduled on 3 March, its double had left Germany as early as 19 February to carry out the mission entrusted to it. It is entirely feasible that this switch was carried out in a secrecy which tricked even Admiral Godt and Captain Heye, especially since the secret orders heretofore seem to have come from the Supreme Army Command of the Reichwehr.
Thus, all German naval officers quoted previously may have spoken the truth. Commandant Wermuth may have been sincerely convinced that his boat was the real U-530. And Captain Langer and Admirals Godt and Captain Heye also may have been entirely sincere when they asserted that the real U-530 was on 19 February still at Kiel.
Did the Allies ever succeed in proving a switch? This is a moot question, since no statement on this subject was ever published.
Nevertheless, the British Admiralty must have entertained suspicions as to the real state of affairs. On 18 July 1945 its spokesman told the press in London that "no official calculation has been undertaken as to the number of remaining German submarines". At about the same time a London naval commentator freely admitted "With respect to the German submarine problem even the Admiral's secret intelligence branch despite the information available, is unable to express itself with absolute certainty".
With the U-530 and its crew interned at Mar del Plata, the Argentine Naval Authorities decided on 17 July 1945 to place that sub at the disposal of the United States and Great Britain. That same day, news was received in Buenos Aires of strange observations made by inhabitants of the village of San Clements del Toyo, situated to the north of Mar del Plata.
These villagers claimed to have seem the shape of another German submarine silhouetted against the horizon far out at sea. A few of the observers even claimed to have spotted two subs and that one of them appeared to have run aground not far from the shore.
Upon receipt of this news the Argentine Navy Ministry dispatched several airplane squadrons and various ships to the scene. But despite intensive searching no submarines were spotted. As a matter of fact, weather conditions in the warmth of a thick fog hampered the search considerably which rendered the job of the combined naval and air units so difficult that it was soon broken off. Yet, an extensive area was covered.
Also, numerous beach patrols were organized immediately along the coast in order to prevent any landing attempts. Simultaneously, Argentina's Federal Police launched several investigations among the country's German colonies.
The net results were zero.
No submarines were sighted and no landings were discovered along the coast.
A week later, on 24 July, the US Government at Washington announced it had dispatched army planes to Mar del Plata in order to bring the crew of the U-530 to the US The same communique added that the U-530 would be towed to an American port.
The news was bound to create a sensation. Though the war had ended three months earlier, the US seemed in great haste to intern within its borders the crew of the U-530. This contrasted with the leisurely manner in which the crew of the 'Admiral Graft Spee' had been carried off at the height of the war.
Suffice it to say that no official statements were ever issued concerning the interrogations of the crew of the U-530 by the US authorities. Rumors had it that both officers and men were subjected an intensive questioning. But the results still remain to be aired.
Appearance of the U-977
A little over a month after the surrender of the U-530, on 17 August 1945 the Argentine Naval Ministry issued to the press two communiques.
"Today, at 9:20 a.m., the first communique, from a German submarine, seemingly of the type of the U-530, surrendered to Argentine Naval units on patrol off Mar del Plata. The aforementioned submarine entered Mar del Plata at 11:15 towed by the Dredge M10 and escorted by a submarine of the country's Navy. Thereupon the crew was taken ashore. At present, a security watch is being stationed on board".
The second communique added:
"The German submarine now lying at anchor in the port of Mar del Plata is the U-977 of 600 tons. Its crew is made up of 32 men, including four officers. The boat was commanded by Lt. Commander Heinz Schäffer who at present is aboard the 'S.S. Belgrano'.
During the next 48 hours it was revealed that the U-977 had been spotted approximately eight miles east of the port of Mar del Plata. It was sighted by Argentine Naval Units on patrol in this area as well as by a local fishing boat. The 'S.S. Commodore Py' and other vessels approached the sub and ascertained that it was German. Thereupon the sub's commander indicated his readiness to surrender. The ship was then escorted to the base where officers and enlisted men were immediately interned and subjected to preliminary questioning".
Important contrasts were observed between the new arrival and the U-530 which had surrendered over a month earlier.
The U-977, seemingly of the latest design and equipped with the latest type of navigating and other instruments, was not disarmed. It even possessed equipment in the form of a chemical substances which, when released into the water, would stay submerged and there create subsurface bubbles so as to lend the impression that the submarine had sunk.
Concerning the itinerary of the U-977 as recorded in the ship's log book, the Argentine Naval Ministry on the eve of 18 August issued the following communique:
"Documents found aboard the German U-boat U-977 seem to indicate that the ship left Kiel on 13 April, made Oslo and left there on 22 April, then touched Christiansund and left there on 2 May. On the Norwegian Coast it disembarked 16 men, all noncommissioned officers, who were married and had families in Germany. Next the ship traversed the blockaded zone of the Atlantic by slipping through the Faroe Islands and Iceland. From there it traveled a southerly course, passed to the west of the Charies and in between the Cape Verde Islands. Thereafter it surfaced, passed near the cliffs of San Pablo, then followed the Brazilian coast, but out of sight from the latter and at an average distance of 180 miles, and made for Mar del Plata".
From the above communique it would appear that the U-977 had been on the high seas for more than three and a half months, without engaging in any belligerent act, just like the U-530.
Now Commandant Schäffer of the U-977 stated that he had no personal acquaintance of Capt. Otto Wermuth of the U-530 and his officers.
But he did admit that he knew about the surrender of the U-530 to the Argentine naval authorities at Mar del Plata. This news had been received by the radio on board the U-977.
Now arises this question: Why did Captain Schäffer and the U-977 wait five additional weeks before following the example of the U-530 in surrendering at Mar del Plata?
The rest of the story of the U-977 is comparatively uneventful. The crew was taken to Garcia Island and from there transferred by planes to the US As in the case of the U-530, the results of their interrogations were never published.
An Unknown Mission
Despite the official silence cloaked around these two mysterious Nazi subs, the following conclusions are self-evident:
(1) After leaving Germany, both the U-530 as well as the U-977 touched Norwegian ports, then set their course for the South Atlantic, both traveling almost identical routes.
(2) Both boats were on the high seas for approximately three and a half months, without their officers being able to account satisfactorily for their activities during that period.
(3) Both commandants failed to comply with the surrender orders issued by Admiral Dönitz. Nevertheless, they did not engage in any acts of war.
(4) No satisfactory explanations were given by either sub for their motives to surrender. Although Capt. Schäffer of the U-977 had received the news of the surrender of the U-530, he elected to remain at sea for another 5 weeks prior to surrendering HIS ship.
(5) Despite the U-977 being fully armed, both submarines apparently had been used for transport instead of combat. This is also borne out by their rather full complements and by the surprisingly large food stores on board.
(6) In both submarines, officers as well as enlisted men were young and had no families.
(7) The ship headed by Commandant Wermuth obviously was not the original U-530, as seen from the statements of Admiral Godt and Capt. Langer.
(8) Actually, and we again stress the point, not only the U-530 and the U-977 were prowling the Atlantic after Dönitz' surrender orders. There was a third sub or, chronologically speaking, a first one.
As early as 4 June, 1945 it had been announced by the British Admiralty that a German submarine had appeared that day off Leixoes, Portugal. The crew, numbering 47, disarmed and scuttled their ship and then surrendered to the Portuguese authorities. Its commander stated that the ship had followed a course which later on was traveled by the U-530 and U-977, but had decided upon surrender to the Portuguese authorities because its hull and engines were badly in need of repairs.
The above seems to indicate that at the time of Germany's collapse, a number of subs had left German ports, their identity either real or faked, in order to touch first Norwegian ports of call and then to embark for the South Atlantic on missions of mystery.
Nevertheless, the mystery of these Nazi subs prowling the Atlantic even after the end of the War is bound up with the greatest mystery of all time: the survival and hiding place of Adolf Hitler, in whose death neither the highest diplomat in America nor England nor Russia believes.
As a matter of fact, the strange story of these German subs which surrendered in Argentina and Portugal starts in the underground fortresses of the Nazi Chancellery.
In the Bunker of Adolf Hitler whose criminal hand seven years earlier had set the torch of war to the world, there was hatched one of the supreme hoaxes of all times.
'I shall die defending Berlin," boasted Adolf. But the FANTASTIC EVIDENCE proves that HE LIVED!
Hitler Arranges his Fake "Death" and Cremation
On 30 April 1945 the battle for Berlin entered its last stage. The entire city was in flames and the ground trembled under salvos of 15,000 cannon with which Soviet General Zhukov had ringed Hitler's Capital. Illuminated by flickering flames, combat continued throughout the night with a ferocity seldom witnessed. At dawn the Russian flag was fluttering over the hollow, ruined shell that remained of what once had been the Reichstag, Germany's Capital.
Where was Hitler? He was said to be directing the defense of Berlin from his underground shelter below the Nazi Chancellory. But the Allies doubted this.
Nevertheless, in the early morning hours of 30 April, the "London Daily Mail" blared forth in giant headlines:
"Hitler Dying; War May Be Over Today"
This prediction was based on a piece of news received by Wilson Broadbent, diplomatic editor of the paper, who quoted a high Whitehall official as having told him: "Hitler is dying and may already be dead". The official had added that in his opinion the European war had come to an end. "The Times", generally considered the most reserved newspaper in the world, ran the following news item: "Hitler is on the brink of death as the result of a cerebral hemorrhage". The paper added that this news was based on information supposedly released by Himmler.
A Piece of Clever Staging
During the afternoon of 1 May 1945 the Hamburg Radio Station suddenly interrupted its program and began transmission of solemn Wagnerian music. After the funereal strains of "Twilight of the Gods", the announcer stated:
"Attention: In a few seconds we are going to broadcast a grave, but important message addressed to the German people. But first, the Seventh Symphony by Bruckner".
The Bruckner piece concluded, the announcer resumed:
"German men and women: Our Führer Adolf Hitler died this afternoon at his post of command in the Chancellory of the Reich, fighting to his last breath against Bolshevism".
On 1 May 1945, six days before the collapse of the Third Reich, Hamburg Radio broadcast a message to the nation from Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz, commander-in-chief of the German navy since January 1943, and now, following Hitlers suicide on 30 April, the latters reluctant successor as Führer and Chancellor. After the radio announcer had informed his listeners that Hitler had died "fighting to the last breath against Bolshevism and for Germany", Dönitz came to the microphone and made the following declaration:
"German men and women, soldiers of the German Wehrmacht, our Führer, Adolf Hitler, has fallen. In deepest sorrow and reverence the German people bows. He recognized the terrible danger of Bolshevism at an early date and dedicated his existence to this struggle. His life was one single service for Germany. His action in fighting against the Bolshevist spring-tide was waged beyond that, for Europe and the entire civilized world". 1
In the circumstances, it is unlikely that these words found any echo save among the most fanatical and deluded Nazi diehards. Indeed, at the point in his address when Dönitz unconvincingly described his predecessor as "one of the greatest heroes of German history", an unidentified voice broke into the transmission with the remark "This is a lie". 2
1. "News Chronicle", 2 May 1945.
-- "Hitler's Crusade: Bolshevism and the Myth of the International Jewish Conspiracy" by Lorna Waddington, Lecturer in International History at the University of Leeds
Dönitz eulogized Hitler as a man who had dedicated his life to Germany and to warring against "Bolshevism," and who now had died a "hero's death". A powerful ghost voice interrupted him, shouting, "This is a lie!" The ghost voice continued to heckle throughout the Dönitz speech.
"The Salt Lake Tribune", 2 May 1945
The "ghost voice" or sometimes "powerful ghost voice", is also mentioned in other small town newspapers which reprinted the AP story, occasionally re-phrasing it slightly.
An Alberta newspaper, "The Lethbridge Herald", which published the story in its "Final Edition" on 1 May, claimed:
During the broadcast a ghost voice broke in at times demanding at one point: "Rise against Dönitz. The struggle is not worthwhile if crime wins." During Dönitz' statement that Hitler had striven all his life to save Europe from Bolshevism and in this struggle he had sacrificed his life and found a hero's death, the voice said, "This is a lie".
Later, the same German radio station announced that Admiral Dönitz, Commander in Chief of the Reich Navy, had assumed Hitler's functions. Thereupon, the radio transmitted a proclamation by the new Chief of State, exhorting the German people to "keep the oath they had sworn to the Führer while the German Army fought on to save the Reich from deadly peril".
Thus, everything seemed to jibe perfectly. Hitler, falling amidst the burning ruins of Berlin, had already written what was to become the first chapter of the "Führer Myth".
But suspicions already were rife. Many observers doubted that the Nazis' own story of Hitler's death could be accepted without reservations.
The Russians displayed frank skepticism in the face of the melodramatic announcement. "Tass", the official Soviet news agency, termed the news of Hitler's death "just another Fascist trick," and Moscow promptly stated that "in propagandizing the news of Hitler's death, the Nazis schemed to make it possible for the Führer to leave the stage and retire into the wings".
On the morning of 2 May 1945, Allied General Headquarters published the following communique:
"On 24 April a conference took place at Lübeck between Count Bernadotte, President of the International Red Cross, and Heinrich Himmler. In the course of this talk Himmler acknowledged that Hitler was mortally ill, perhaps already dead".
"General Schellenberg who also participated in these talks, added that Hitler had suffered a brain stroke".
Thus, the announcement by Dönitz that Hitler had died a hero's death was in contradiction to the statement made by Himmler and Schellenberg.
By 2 May 1945, however, both British and American leaders were fully convinced that Hitler was dead. They discarded the Dönitz version of Hitler's heroic death, but they nevertheless were certain Hitler was no longer alive.
With respect to Himmler and Schellenberg, how did they know what occurred in Berlin at the critical hour? Either they may have been uninformed or they may have lied, a possibility which emerged a few days later.
In an order of the day released in the afternoon of 2 May 1945, Marshal Stalin announced the fall of Berlin.
At the same time, the victorious troops began to search systematically among the ruins of Berlin for the body of Hitler. Starting from the Reich Chancellory where the General underground Headquarters of the Führer had been located, they fanned out in all directions.
They also searched for the body of Göbbels.
Feint or Suicide
According to a news item broadcast by Radio Moscow on 3 May, the Director General of Nazi Propaganda, Dr. Hans Fritzsche, who had been captured by the Russians, had stated that Göbbels had committed suicide. As the fall of the capital seemed imminent, Fritzsche related, Göbbels had first killed his wife and children and then taken his own life. Fritzsche also asserted that Hitler had died as the result of Soviet shells and that his body was entombed in a place which it would be impossible to locate.
While the world enthusiastically celebrated the fall of Germany, hopes of finding the principal culprit or at least his body soon waned. It seemed as if developments bore out Fritzsche. Despite systematic searching, the body of Hitler failed to turn up.
On 7 May, the theory that Hitler had suffered a brain stroke was categorically denied by Dr. Erwin Giesing, a German Army doctor and nose, ear and throat specialist. Interrogated by the Americans, Giesing said he had examined Hitler thoroughly on 15 February 1945 and that there was not the slightest probability that Hitler had died from a cerebral stroke.
Giesing stated also that in the course of his last examination he found Hitler's blood pressure normal, his lungs healthy, and that, in general, his health for a man of his age was exceptionally good.
On 8 May, a communique issued from Headquarters of the 2nd British Army announced that according to information furnished by a Soviet General, the Russians had found under the ruins of the Chancellory a corpse which seemed to be Hitler's. Furthermore, all the servants attached to the Chancellory asserted that the corpse was Hitler's, except one who said that it was a chef's who had been killed because he was mistaken for the Führer. He also said that Hitler wasn't dead, but had fled from Berlin.
Soon the Russians began to show indications of skepticism with respect to Hitler's cadaver. On 10 May a Soviet spokesman stated curtly: "At least four corpses were found in the ruins of Berlin, any one of which could be Hitler's. However, none has been identified in a manner which would establish Hitler's identity beyond reasonable doubt".
Meanwhile Erich Heinz Kempka, ex-chauffeur of the Nazi Dictator, declared that he had assisted at the cremation of the corpses of Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun.
Kempke told his story on 20 June at Berchtesgaden to the "United Press" which quoted him as stating in effect that Hitler and Eva Braun two days after they were married, committed suicide in an under-ground apartment in back of the Chancellory at Berlin. Kempka claimed that shortly before dawn on 2 May he had carried the body of Eva Braun from that apartment after she and Hitler had died from shots with a Walther pistol.
According to the "United Press", Kempka named as witnesses to the cremation of the bodies of Hitler and Eva in the Chancellory, in addition to himself, Bormann, Göbbels, Otto Günsche and Heinz Linge, two personal aides to Hitler, as well as two others whose names he did not recall. He also said that shortly before Hitler's and Eva's suicides, the Führer personally ordered Günsche to attend to the cremation of their bodies so that they would not fall into Russian hands.
Hitler's personal stenographer, Gerhard Herrgesell, who had surrendered himself and his notebook to the Americans, provided the Allies with a seemingly accurate description of the stormy underground meeting of 22 April.
According to Herrgesell, Hitler retired to his quarters in the Chancellory on 16 January, and from 1 April on all meetings of importance were held in his underground Bunker. Hitler and Eva lived in two tiny apartments adjoining the meeting chamber. The apartments were lit and heated by electricity.
A few weeks prior to 22 April Hitler declared: "We shall fight to the last square foot of German soil".
As a result, it was generally expected that he would fix the date for exchanging his head-quarters in the underground Bunker for the comparative safety of the National Retreat in the Bavarian Alps.
On 20 April, around noon, Herrgesell stated, Chief of Staff Krebs who had succeeded Guderian, declared that the situation of Berlin was critical. As a result, Hitler gave orders for the majority of his Headquarters staff to be evacuated to Berchtesgaden. Only a small part remained behind in Berlin.
On 21 April, Russian shells began to fall among the Government buildings in Berlin.
The Last Council
"On 22 April, around noon," Herrgesell stated, "explosions of Russian shells could be heard clearly in Hitler's underground shelter". Half an hour later the Führer sent word to Keitel, Jodl and Bormann that he wanted to see them in the meeting chamber. Herrgesell too was ordered to report for taking notes.
The meeting, which was to be the last War Council of the Nazi High Command, began with Hitler saying:
"I realize that all is lost. I shall stay in Berlin. I shall die here in the Chancellory because I believe that in this way I can best serve the German people. They must be inspired to continue the struggle".
His listeners repeatedly urged him to evacuate and reminded him of his own statement that, "We shall fight to the last square foot of German soil".
But Hitler remained firm: "I shall stay here," he said.
Keitel, Jodl and Bormann then told him that they would not leave him in this hour.
But Hitler ordered: "Go to South Germany".
Thereupon he arose, indicating the Council was ended.
Thus, according to Herrgesell, Hitler decided to die in Berlin. The Führer's personal stenographer was convinced that he and Eva Braun had died under the ruins of the Chancellory. He discounted both the theory of Hitler's brain stroke and that of his and Eva's suicide. In accordance with the Führer's orders, Herrgesell and another stenographer were evacuated by plane from the Gatow airdrome near Berlin on 22 April.
Herrgesell concluded by stating that a few minutes before he left Berlin for the airport, Eva Braun handed him a small package to deliver. He believed it contained a ring as well as a long letter, to whom he didn't know. The package was addressed to one Lt. Müller, an aide to Martin Bormann.
Herrgesell's story was in effect corroborated by both Keitel and Jodl.
As to Kempka's tale, he admitted under questioning that at the "cremation" he had seen only a casket draped over by a Nazi war flag. He had not seen the Führer's body.
We believe that the Wagnerian music, the sensational communiques and "eye-witness" stories, the many corpses and the "cremation" are but bits of Hitler's plan to simulate his death.
The Führer Marries Eva Braun and plans their Escape from Berlin
Editor's Note: Official Allied reports said that Hitler and the beautiful Eva Braun had committed suicide and been cremated in the ruined Reich Chancellory at Berlin. But an intriguing rumor circulated in Europe and on top levels that the suicide was a hoax, a brilliantly conceived smokescreen behind which the most-sought-after couple in the world had fled to escape Allied justice.
Suddenly the rumor became something more when two Nazi U-Boats, "one of them luxuriously furnished" came out of nowhere at the Argentine naval base of Mar del Plata and surrendered to the authorities. This was late in the Summer of 1945, months after Germany had capitulated and the shooting war had ended.
During the early part of July 1945 English and American war correspondents for the first time obtained permission to visit the site of the alleged suicide of Hitler.
The British journalists did not hide their skepticism concerning the many versions relative to the Führer's death. Their opinion as a group was expressed in the following "Reuters dispatch date-lined: 'Hitler's Underground Bunker, Berlin, 5 July 1945':
"The story of Hitler's death is a yarn which has no point. The charred body found by Red Army Officers and examined by experts was not that of Hitler. It was the body of one of his doubles and at that, one of his second-rate doubles, according to an officer on the staff of Marshal Zhukov who conducted this "Reuters" correspondent through the ruins of the Chancellory.
"So far no trace has as yet been found of a Body resembling Eva Braun,' this officer added. 'We are so certain that the corpse found is not that of Hitler that orders have been issued to re-inter it in the garden of the Chancellory".
The Famous English Report
The official English report, published 1 November 1945, attempted to detail the circumstances concerning the deaths of Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun. However, the report was far from convincing and as a result, doubts concerning its accuracy continued to linger.
On the evening of 23 April, according to eye-witnesses interviewed by the English, Hitler received at his Bunker Reichs Armament Minister Speer. The Führer told him of his suicide plans and asked that his body be cremated.
By nightfall on 26 April, Hitler received the Commandant of Berlin, Ritter von Greim [sic - von Greim was newly appointed Head of the Luftwaffe], to whom he communicated the same plans concerning his suicide. The Führer added that he had taken measures to insure the complete destruction of his and Eva Braun's bodies, so that "they would not fall into the enemy's hands and so that nothing recognizable would remain".
On 29 April, as the Russian tanks rumbled onto the Potsdamer Platz, Hitler in desperation ordered an attack by the Luftwaffe which, however, had disintegrated. Also he sent Dönitz a wire full of recriminations. That same evening Hitler married Eva Braun in the small conference room of his underground Bunker.
After the ceremony the newlyweds retired to their apartment for a macabre supper. One of Hitler's secretaries has stated that the table conversation revolved around the suicide plan and that the bride was so depressed she left the table. When she had gone, Hitler ordered his favorite Alsatian dog destroyed.
At 2:30 a.m. Hitler summoned some 20 persons from the neighboring ruins and officially said goodbye to them, shaking hands with everybody. A little later, upon orders of Hitler, two liters of naphtha [sic - should be 200] were placed at the entrance of his Bunker.
On the same day, at about 2:30 p.m., Hitler and Eva made the rounds of their Bunker, saying goodbye to all others. Next, Hitler and his wife again retired to their apartment. There Hitler fired a shot, presumably into his mouth, while Eva Braun swallowed a lethal dose of poison.
Thereupon the bodies were taken to the garden adjacent to the entrance of the Bunker. They were carried by Göbbels and Bormann and probably by Dr. Stumpfegger, Hitler's personal physician, as well as by others. Hitler's blood-covered body was draped in a flag.
The two bodies were placed side by side about three yards from the Bunker entrance, then drenched with naphtha. Constant shelling by Russian artillery forced the party to seek shelter in the very entrance to the Bunker. From there a rag soaked in burning naphtha was hurled at the bodies.
While the group stood at attention in the Bunker entrance, the bodies began to burn. After a last salute to the Führer the party retired into the Bunker proper.
There is no indication as to the time it took for the two bodies to burn. One of the witnesses has said that they burned until nothing whatsoever remained.
In conclusion the official British report stated:
"Proofs are not complete, but they are positive, circumstantial and gathered from independent sources. There is no proof that Hitler is still alive. Rumors to this effect have been studied thoroughly with the result that they have been found baseless".
Who Was Eva Braun?
Hitler had known Eva Braun since 1929. The daughter of a professor, she was apprenticed to Heinrich Hoffmann, the Führer's personal photographer. At that time she was about 20.
Thanks to precautions taken by the Gestapo, Hitler's affair with Eva was kept secret for about 12 years. Nobody dared talk about her and magazines and papers never printed her picture. She never held any official post nor accompanied Hitler to any public receptions. Even when Hitler attended performances of his beloved Wagnerian operas, Eva remained at home. She officiated only at private gatherings in company with Emmy Göring and Mrs. Göbbels.
She didn't use lipstick nor did she smoke in the Führer's presence and there were tearful scenes before she got permission to wear high-heeled shoes, especially brought for her from Paris. Otherwise, she dressed to suit Hitler's taste. On 6 February, her birthday, Hitler invariably presented her with a valuable jewel.
At Berchtesgaden, in the evenings or when it rained, Hitler and Eva Braun played cards in front of the fire place while a servant played softly on his accordion in the background of the large living room.
Hitler always treated her as if she were his little daughter while she respectfully addressed him as "Mein Führer" and never spoke to him frivolously.
Thus, Adolf Hitler, puritan demigod and bachelor of mythology of the Third Reich, kept a secret mistress, just like any second-rate politician. He managed to deceive the German people and the entire world for more than 10 years, by assuming an air of austerity which was almost entirely simulated.
Dr. Ludwig Stumpfegger
The official British report is purely circumstantial, since various "eye-witnesses" were in complete disagreement as to the exact date of Hitler's suicide which, according to the British, occurred on 30 April.
It is logical to assume that Hitler had planned his flight and that he felt considerably relieved as soon as he was in the company of people who had been entrusted with the project. On 22 April, Hitler had ordered his General Staff south. Also, he managed to keep Keitel and Jodl away from the Chancellory. By announcing his proposed suicide, Hitler managed to remove from Berlin all those who might have hindered his flight plan.
Furthermore, the minute details furnished in the report with respect to the "macabre wedding night" are interesting. This account fixes the date of Hitler's marriage to Eva Braun as the evening of 29 April, with nothing as basis for that assumption except statements by various people. However, in the alleged marriage certificate which was found subsequently, the date and place of marriage are stricken out. And as to the final scene, nobody saw Hitler's body because it was draped with a flag.
But even the English report admits the attendance of a person at the funeral whose presence there is not easily explained, if it can be explained, at all.
That person was Dr. Stumpfegger, personal physician to Hitler.
Dr. Stumpfegger had perfected what he called the "Silk-Cord Operation". This operation, technical details of which have never been revealed, was perfected in numerous experiments at Ravensbrück on prisoners whom Stumpfegger committed to a state of paralysis and then returned to their normal state by means of surgical treatment. According to other Nazi doctors, Stumpfegger pursued his experiments with such success that was able to cause certain forms of brain paralyses in his victims and was equally able to restore them to health.
Towards the end of March, 1945, Stumpfegger suddenly left Ravensbrück with all instruments necessary for a "silk-cord" operation and took up residence in Hitler's Bunker.
Nobody seems to have given a plausible explanation. But some of those who spent the last days with Hitler at the Chancellory told the following story:
"As the Russian artillery barrage on the ruins of Berlin grew in intensity, the few women who, due to the nature of their jobs, had to remain in the Chancellory, were led every night to the most secure part of the building: the private sanctuary of Hitler.
"There, at 2:30 a.m. on the morning of 1 May 1945, word spread that the Führer wanted to say goodbye to them. The women were surprised, since it was generally assumed that Hitler had removed himself from the scene several days before.
The evidence of the eyewitness, Hermann Karnau, is interesting because he is the only eyewitness to the alleged cremation of Adolf and Eva Hitler who fell into the hands of the British whose story has ever reached the public. Karnau escaped from Berlin, but by mid-May he had made his way to his British-occupied hometown, Wilhelmshaven, where he surrendered to Canadian troops. After being interrogated by British intelligence officer Captain K. W. E. Leslie, Karnau related his version of the events he had witnessed to an audience of reporters which included Walter Kerr from "Reuters" and Daniel De Luce of the "Associated Press".
Leslie told the reporters:
"I am sure that Karnau's report about Hitler's death is authentic. I have interrogated many German prisoners of war and I would call this man a reliable witness."
Karnau claimed that the cremation had taken place at 6.30 pm on 1 May. Karnau's account of the events of 1 May is sufficiently detailed that it cannot be said that he was mistaken about either the date or the time at which the cremation occurred. Karnau had seen Adolf Hitler alive and sitting in his favourite wicker chair when he went for breakfast on the morning of 1 May. During that morning, he recalled, four men arrived carrying gasoline cans "for the air conditioning system". Karnau said that as he knew the Bunker's air conditioning system used Diesel oil, he denied them entrance. He only allowed them in after Linge intervened. Karnau, who last saw Hitler alive at around 4.00 pm, believed that Hitler was subsequently poisoned by one of his personal physicians, Dr Ludwig Stumpfegger, and cremated at around 6.30 pm that same day. It should not be concluded that Karnau was wrong about a cremation having taken place on 1 May.
On 7 May, Dr Helmut Kunz, who had worked in the Reich Chancellery dental surgery from 23 April 1945 onwards, was interrogated by the Soviets. The evidence he gave on this occasion can not be lightly dismissed because it was the first account ever given by a Bunker survivormeaning that it is the least influenced by accounts given by others. It is also the most reliable, in the sense that the events it discusses had taken place only a week before. Dr Kunz explicitly affirmed seeing Eva Hitler alive on at least two occasions on the evening of 30 April. Dr Kunz told his Russian interrogators that he had seen Eva playing with the Göbbels children on that evening and that a little later, between 10.00 and 11.00 pm, he, Professor Werner Haase and two of Hitler's secretaries had joined her for coffee. On the latter occasion, Eva told Dr Kunz that Hitler was not yet dead but he "would die when he received confirmation that [his] will had reached the person it had been sent to".
Dr Haase's interrogation record, as well as those of several other Bunker survivors, affirms that Dr Kunz was in the Bunker in the period in which these events took place. Unfortunately, the record of Dr Haase's interrogation published in "Hitler's Death: Russia's Last Great Secret from the Files of the KGB" contains no information pertaining to either Adolf or Eva Hitler.
It is very hard to imagine that Dr Kunz could have been confused about the date, that in such circumstances he could have mistaken Eva Hitler for someone else or that Eva did not actually know whether Hitler was yet dead or not. Moreover, since Hitler's will never reached its intended recipient[s], it is entirely plausible that Hitler would not have decided to die until the last possible moment, which is consistent with a time of 6.30 pm on 1 May.
"Thereupon, the women lined up outside Hitler's private apartment. Soon someone announced the coming of the Führer and on the scene appeared Dr. Stumpfegger in his white surgeon's blouse. With him was a person who seemed semi-paralyzed. That person rigidly shook the hands of every woman and finally withdrew into the Führer's private apartment. Not a word was spoken during the entire scene. Although it had been said that Hitler wanted to say goodbye, the person did not speak a single word. When some of the women addressed him, he didn't answer".
This person could have been one of Hitler's doubles who had been transmitted into a semi-paralytical state by one of Dr. Stumpfegger's silk-cord operations.
The women as a whole thought it was Hitler. One remarked, "I am sure it was the Führer. But he had changed. Maybe he had been injected with drugs. His eyes were glassy and seemed unable to focus. His spirit was different. But it was the Führer all right".
The Russians expressed the opinion that everything had been set in motion for a gigantic plot to facilitate Hitler's flight.
"We know that Hitler had doubles," one of Marshall Zhukov's aides stated. "Several of them were killed at Berlin. Also, I want to make it clear that I am certain we have not found the corpse of Hitler".
Commandant Deodor Pletonov, the Russian officer in command of the Berlin sector which took in the Chancellory, himself was at the head of the first Soviet troops who penetrated into the building. At the entrance they came across a charred body which was supposed to be Hitler's. Pletonov said, "The body was not that of Hitler's. It was one of his doubles".
From a study of the foregoing, we know that:
(1) Two bodies were cremated in the Reich Chancellory in the late afternoon of 1 May.
(2) Nobody at any time got a closeup of the corpses supposed to be those of Hitler and Eva. Both were draped in flags.
(3) The man in the company of Stumpfegger on the morning of 1 May was semi-paralyzed, and his movements were limited to shaking the hands of about a dozen women. These women said that the person was Hitler, although "he appeared changed and his eyes were glassy".
(4) The women were summoned to say goodbye and to testify later that they had seen Hitler a few hours prior to his "suicide," thus serving as alibi witnesses for Hitler.
There is no doubt that this miserable double who appeared as semi-paralytic and who was unconscious and deprived of his willpower, was later eliminated by means of a pistol shot, then wrapped in a flag and cremated in the company of a body supposedly that of Eva Braun.
In the meantime, where was the real Hitler? Undoubtedly, he was already a long way from the Chancellory, the same building which General Jodl on 22 April had nick-named a "mouse-trap".
Hitler could have escaped by plane from the Gatow Airport, located 13 kilometers from the center of Berlin, as late as 27 April, when the airport was taken by the Russians.
Or Hitler and Eva could have escaped even later. They could have taken off directly outside the gates of the Chancellory where the Charlottenburg Highway could have served admirably as runway.
In fact, although the Charlottenburg Highway was under the fire of Russian artillery, Hitler could have taken off from there as late as 30 April. A plane piloted by the Nazi Aviatrix Hanna Reitsch and carrying as passenger General Ritter von Greim took off from the highway as late as the early hours of 30 April.
On 9 June 1945 Marshal Zhukov announced that Hitler and Eva Braun had been married shortly before the fall of Berlin. Several days later, a Stockholm dispatch stated that Eva Braun had two children, a son and a daughter, both of whom had been born during her long affair with Hitler.
Hitler reportedly became a father for the first time during the night of 1 January 1938. Eva Braun bore him a son in a maternity pavilion at San Remo, Italy. During the preceding month she had not been seen, as usual, driving through Berlin in her car.
Several hours after the birth, it was announced to Japanese journalists in Berlin in a short, unofficial statement by General Bansai, Japanese military attaché. Very soon afterwards, the Japanese Ambassador summoned the correspondents to his office and said the statement had been without any factual basis. Also, he asked them to give their word of honor not to speak about the matter and especially not to breathe a word about it to their colleagues of the foreign press in Berlin.
But the Berlin correspondent of "Nichi Nichi", leading Japanese daily, decided not to keep silent. At least, he felt not bound to silence if the news was inaccurate. And so he decided to go to Munich where Eva Brau's father lived and where also the informant of the Japanese military attache resided.
In the course of a long talk with Eva's father, the latter said, "There is no doubt that the Führer intends to marry my daughter. That she has borne him a son or is about to do so is of little importance. The important thing is that Hitler shall not die without a successor".
The correspondent returned to Berlin and called on his Ambassador. He told him of the result of his trip in the hope that the diplomat would relieve him of the oath of silence. On the contrary, the Ambassador enjoined him not to reveal a single word on the matter.
Another correspondent states that on the eve of 1 January 1939, an official of the Reich Chancellery was arrested for having stated at a party, "Today, the son of the Führer celebrates his first birthday. Let us drink to his health".
But where are Hitler's children? After the fall of Berlin a former attaché of the Swedish legation who had remained in close contact with Hitler's headquarters during the siege of the Reich Capital, revealed that Hitler's children were living with Eva Braun's parents in Bavaria. He added:
"It is believed that when Hitler left Berlin on 8 or 9 April, he did so not only in order to take Eva Braun out of Berlin but also to say goodbye to his children whom he wanted to be in a safer place. He spent 3 days in Bavaria at a time when his presence in Berlin was more than necessary".
What really happened to the children were determined by French intelligence. A few days before Hitler vanished from Berlin, the children were flown to a naval base in Norway which the Nazis occupied.
Hitler Left Children, says a Doctor
The Canberra Times
4 May 1965
HAMBURG: A close friend of the doctor of Eva Braun -the woman Adolf Hitler married hours before their dual suicide- has stated that Hitler had two children by her and at least one of them was living in Austria.
Hitler and Braun committed suicide 20 years ago on Friday. Dr Hans-Dictrich Röhrs, a friend and associate of Miss Braun's gyncacologist, Professor Scholten, said In a book published before the 20th anniversary of Hitler's death, that Hitler's children escaped from Germany and the son was still living in Austria. He said that Prof. Scholten had spent two long periods at Hitler's hideout in the Bavarian Alps to assist Eva Braun to give birth to a daughter in 1941 and to a son in 1943. The whereabouts of the daughter is not known.
A former official photographer, Hugo Jäger, has supported the fact that Hitler has a son in Austria: "It is reported that he attended the funeral at Berchtesgaden of Hitler's sister Paula some years ago".
Now read on... -
In his Political "Last Will and Testament" Hitler had bragged: "I was never beaten - I was betrayed". And now he was thirsting for revenge. He was planning his comeback and the resumption of his work; just as he had done during the bleak days of 1923 when the failure of his ill fated "Putsch" had forced him to start all over again, using new methods and plans. In 1923 Hitler also had fled. But six months later he was captured, due to having taken insufficient precautions and was committed to the relative comfort of Landsberg jail. Had Hitler this time made preparations, better preparations, for fleeing before the victorious Allies from whom he couldn't expect mercy? The answer is: Yes. There is proof of that, both circumstantial and concrete.
But first of all, there are the telling words uttered by Admiral Karl Dönitz in 1943: "The German submarine fleet is proud of having built for the Führer in another part of the world a Shangri-La on land, an impregnable fortress". Strangely enough, Dönitz's words were soon forgotten in the torrent of subsequent events. No mention was made of that utterance in the press commenting on Dönitz' succession to Hitler as Reichs Führer on 1 May 1945. Only from time to time the matter cropped up, like sudden flashes in the dark. Thus when the Norwegian traitor Vidkun Quisling faced his judges he cried in a desperate plea for his life: "I believed I fought for a just cause and I refused to run away from my responsibilities when the Nazis, shortly before their final collapse, offered to convoy me aboard a submarine to a safe refuge".
But there is no doubt that the submarine was the only means by which Hitler could have been able to flee the European Continent. The airplane was no longer a safe means of flight, in view of the superiority of the Allied air arm and also in view of the vast, invisible radar net which enmeshed the sky over Germany. In contrast, the submarine did not only enjoy an infinitely larger radius of action, but also, practically enjoyed immunity if it refrained from warfare action. From the second year of the war on, a fairly large number of German submarines had operated in the vast reaches of the Pacific and in some cases had been away from their bases for over a year. They were capable of descending to a depth of more than 200 meters and could cruise in a submerged state for weeks without coming to the surface, according to information given out by the British Admiralty It is silly to believe that Admiral Dönitz couldhave been unaware of such organized flight plans. A task of such nature involved a certain number of submarine units and could never have been accomplished without authorization of the supreme Commander of the Nazi submarine arm.
Dönitz most certainly was fully aware of Hitler's plans to escape. Witness his ominous words spoken towards the end of 1943 and cited above. Actually Dönitz was far from being a "simple sailor at heart and good-natured", as he had been pictured by friendly sources. On the contrary, he was one of the most formidable figures in the galaxy of the crumbling Third Reich. Implacable, fanatic, experienced and possessed with unbelievable energy, he was more Nazi than any of the other high officers of the Nazi war fleet. Furthermore, Dönitz enjoyed the fullest confidence of the Führer and was at any time able to come and go as he saw fit at Hitler's office. According to British commentators, Dönitz was one of the "mystery men" of the Nazi Hierarchy.
There were sufficient grounds for such theories. During the first World War, Dönitz was one of the most clever submarine commanders of the German War Fleet which then was commanded by Admiral Tirpitz. Nevertheless, during a brave, but careless attack against Allied shipping, Dönitz' vessel was torpedoed and sunk. He was taken prisoner on 14 October 1917 and sent to a prisoners' camp near Manchester where he began to fake symptoms of incurable madness. Six months later he was returned to Germany with a group of disabled prisoners. Hardly had Dönitz touched the German soil when his "madness" vanished.
It is strange that so little attention has been paid to the fact that at the crucial moment when the very existence of Nazi Germany seemed in the balance, the helm of the Third Reich was entrusted to a naval person, instead of to an army man, an aviator or to a politician-diplomat. The surrender talks were initiated not by Keitel of the Army or von Ribbentrop of the Foreign Office, but by Admiral Dönitz of the Fleet. Why? Because it was necessary that in the critical days of Hitler's flight, Dönitz should be in command of the overall situation.
According to Hitler's carefully drawn and long-prepared escape plans, the submarine convoy which was to transport Hitler and his entourage southward, was to meet at "some point along the Norwegian coast". Here the embarkation of the Führer and his aides was to occur some time between 22 April and 2 May, 1945. The above is not simply based on conjectures, but on indisputable facts. The submarine which surrendered at Leixoes, Portugal, on 4 June 1945 as well as the U-530 and the U-977 both of which surrendered at Mar del Plata, Argentina, came from Norway; all three had left Norwegian ports prior to undertaking their mystery trip to the South Atlantic.
Then there is the testimony of the documents found on board the U-977 and corroborated by its Capt. Schäffer and his officers and men. The U-977 had weighed anchor in the German port of Kiel on 13 April 1945 and went to Oslo. It left Oslo Fjord on the 22nd of that same month and went to the Norwegian base of Christiansund where it remained until 2 May, when the sub got underway again, beginning its southward journey. All three subs, the one which gave up at Leixoes, the U-530 and the U-977, belonged to that "Phantom Convoy" whose task it was to convoy the Führer southward to an already prepared refuge, the existence of which had been hinted at by Dönitz towards the end of 1943. Neither Captain Wermuth nor Schäffer could reveal anything concerning the nature of their mission, since they did not know a thing about it. They did not know whom they followed or escorted nor where they were bound for. They had received from their superiors, sealed orders to the effect that they were to follow a predetermined route towards the South Atlantic, always traveling submerged. They, as well as the other units of the convoy, had been expressly forbidden to use their radio, even for intercommunication, so as not to reveal their whereabouts. They were to follow the submarine flagship as closely as possible, guided only by their whereabouts. They were to follow the submarine flagship as closely as possible, guided only by their earphones. This then was the "Phantom Convoy" which traveled southward, mute, blind, unseen and unheard, led only by the one vessel which knew its plan and purpose and final destination.
After the U-Boats U-530 and U-977 surrender to neutral Argentina, the U.S. sent a commission of high-ranking officers to investigate the acquiescence of the submarines.
Both Captains, Otto Wermuth and Heinz Schäffer, were held in custody and questioned about the whereabouts of Martin Bormann, the body of Hitler, as well as a possible location of the last bastions of Nazis somewhere in the Antarctic.
The commander of U-977, Captain Schäffer, was familiar with the Hartz Mountain complexes, the Type XXI U-Boats and had experience with patrolling the Antarctic.
Following the grilling by the U.S. commission, Schäffer was given over to the British for further interrogation.
This part of the story created additional rumors, that the U-977 first stopped off at a large cavern entrance in the Antarctic area of Neuschwabenland and dropped off crates and their entire payload.
It did not matter if one or several of them would be impelled by storms, or would suffer damage impairing their maneuverability and become separated from the convoy The risk of losing several of the units during the long trip had been foreseen. It did not matter as long as none of the officers knew anything about the true nature of the "Phantom Convoy" so that they could not reveal the plan. And this was what happened to the Leixoes surrendered sub as well as to the U-530 and the U-977. The first suffered serious engine trouble. The other two were most probably isolated from the main convoy by storms, since their engines and other sailing equipment were found to be in perfect order. It seems safe to calculate that this piece of bad luck occurred in 1945, probably in the South Atlantic, approximately 40 degrees southern latitude. Furthermore, the fact that the U-530 and the U-977 were separated from the rest of the "Phantom Convoy" explains clearly why these two subs roamed for so long in the South Atlantic before their commanders decided to turn towards Mar del Plata and surrender. They had been forbidden to use their radios. Yet, they continued to keep on their course in the vague hope that some units of the convoy would turn around and come searching for them.
The security measures prescribed for the commandants of the convoy were so stringent that they deprived the individual captains of any chance to make for a prearranged rendezvous point in case they should find themselves dispersed for unforeseen reasons. To act otherwise would have been imprudent: it would have meant taking unjustified risks which could have compromised the entire scheme. The convoy units had been ordered to refrain from any warlike actions. They were not to use their cannon and their torpedo tubes except when actually attacked and then only to protect the submarine flagship. However, no such contingency materialized. The convoy was not attacked and the two subs which surrendered at Mar del Plata arrived with their arms and munitions intact. That it was the "double" of the U-530 and not the authentic U-530 which surrendered at Mar del Plata confirms plainly that the convoy had been prepared with the greatest secrecy and that most of the Nazi Naval Chiefs did not suspect its existence. It seems safe to assume that quite a number of subs which formed the convoy were doubles of Nazi subs which at that time were operating from various German bases. This was an easy way to fool the victors as well as the leaders of the vanquished German Armies.
What was the final goal of the two German subs which surrendered at Mar del Plata? Where did the "phantom convoy" travel to? In what part of the globe was the "Shangri La" which had been constructed by the Nazi submarine fleet and which had inspired the aforementioned boasting on the part of Dönitz late in 1943? Although it might seem obvious, Hitler could not have escaped to Japan. At the time of the flight, relations between Berlin and Tokyo had been strained since the Japanese Warlords had refused categorically to attack Russia in order to save the hard-pressed Nazi armies. On the other hand, it is well known that the Führer himself cordially detested the Japanese and that he had not the slightest confidence in them. Also he could not have taken refuge in any neutral country: No Government, regardless of what its principles and politics might be, would have assumed the responsibility of granting refuge within its territory to Adolf Hitler. To grant asylum to "World Criminal No. 1" would have in itself constituted a grave affront and defiance of the Great Powers and might have brought about an armed conflict which could have resulted only in the final capture of Adolf Hitler. And if the Führer had entered secretly a neutral country or one of its colonies, even under a disguise, he would have ever been in danger of being spotted. No, the Führer did not devise such a hiding place from which to plan ultimate resumption of his power through preliminary underground activity. And this was not the kind of refuge Dönitz had hinted at in his notorious boast.
Actually, there was only one country, both remote and practically deserted, which could have been considered. The construction of a Shangri-La which at the same time was an impregnable fortress, took a considerable time. Furthermore, it had to be hidden, regardless of where it might have been. Thus there remains the possibility that Hitler's refuge might have been established on an island, located in some remote part of the world. A number of times there have been rumors that German submarines, in the course of their wartime roamings, had discovered some faraway island and that they had established there a refuge for the Führer. Such a theory is that and nothing else. But where did the Führer and his convoy go? In other words: Does there exist in a part of the globe a sufficiently uninhabited, large enough space where it would be practically impossible to find Hitler and his entourage? Is there a refuge which is simultaneously sufficiently remote and immense enough so that it would be practically impossible to carry on a search for him? Yes, that land exists, although it may seem improbable. And not only does this place exist, but the Germans and we shall prove this to be so. They began to fit it out suitable as early as 1940.....
In 1938, Antarctica was not politically stable due to international treaties, and the only way Germany could stake a claim over that territory would be actual occupation. Although, the Nazis did not want to provoke the Allies. Germany's actions in Austria and other countries had pushed the limits for friendly relationships between Germany and the Anglo-French Allies. As much as Hitler wanted lands in Antarctica, he was not prepared to go to war over them. The idea of a semi-civilian expedition in cooperation with Lufthansa came into being. Command of the expedition was given to Captain Alfred Ritscher, who had already led some expeditions to the North Pole and proved courageous and skillful in dangerous situations. The expedition's ship was the 'Schwabenland', a special freighter capable of carrying and launching aircraft. It had been in use since 1934 for trans-Atlantic mail delivery. The aircraft it carried was the famous Dornier Wal [Whale]. These aircraft were mounted on steam catapults on the deck of the ship, and could be started and refueled on board the vessel. The 'Schwabenland' was prepared for the expedition at the Hamburg shipyards, carrying a cost of 1 million Reichsmark, nearly a third of the total expedition budget. This alone speaks of the importance and urgency the Nazis placed to secure the Antarctic for Germany. Meanwhile, the crew was assembled and trained by the German Society of Polar Research. The society also invited Richard E. Byrd, the famous American Antarctic researcher, to join the expedition. Byrd arrived in Hamburg in mid November of 1938 and was given a tour of the expedition preparations, including meeting the crew. In the end, though, Byrd declined and returned to the US. The ploy by the Nazis worked as Allies never saw the expedition as a as a military venture.
The 'Schwabenland' left Hamburg on 17 December 1938, and headed to the Antarctic on a precisely planned route She reached the pack ice on 19 January 1939. Wal flights took place over roughly 250,000 square mi. These were photographic missions, and they took more than 11,000 pictures of the area. Old Norwegian maps from 1931 were proven to be wrong and changed accordingly. Nearly one fifth of Antarctica was observed and charted this way. Valuable information was documented for the first time and the lands were simultaneously claimed to be German territory. To stress this claim to the other powers, the two Wal aircraft dropped several thousand small Nazi flags, as well as special metal poles with expedition's insignia and the Swastika. The whole territory now got the name Neuschwabenland. The expedition apparently discovered several ice free regions, small signs of vegetation, as well as warm water lakes and cave inlets. One vast ice cave within the glacier was reportedly found to extend 30 miles to a large hot-water geothermal lake deep below
. The expedition's geologists said that this phenomenon was due to hot sources in the ground. In mid February of 1939, the 'Schwabenland' left the Antarctic. It took two months to get back to Hamburg, and Ritscher used this time to organize the results, maps and photos. Captain Ritscher was so surprised by the results of the flights that he immediately planned a second, fully civilian, expedition. These plans were, however, canceled with the onset of World War 2. The fact was, that there was never going to be a another civilian expedition.
The military took over completely sending U-Boats to the area before and during the war. From military cargo manifests to captured and sunk submarines, many in the Antarctic area had payloads which included at times 50 to 60 men, and included machinery and construction materials. Various scientific teams were moved in to the area, including hunters, trappers, collectors and zoologists, botanists, agriculturists, mycologists, parasitologists, marine biologists, ornithologists, and many others. Numerous divisions of the German government were involved in the top secret project.
This is where the mainstream historians leave off, however there is probably much more to this story.
It is alleged that deep underground construction teams came pouring into the renamed Neu-Schwabenland. They came on cargo ships, military transport ships, and submarines. The cargo ships coming from South Africa were protected by a host of killer-submarines and military ships. This might explain the intense Nazi war efforts in North and South Africa. Any ship that even came close to the shipping routes from South Africa to Antarctica were destroyed by German U-Boats to protect the secret. There are also claims that the last to go there were VIPs and Nazi SS intelligence teams. At the end of WWII it is also claimed that Martin Borman, the body of Hitler and many others within the Reich were brought directly to the Antarctica or via Argentina. None of this is fully documented to the point of being conclusive but there exists much circumstantial evidence.
The Antarctic expedition, unike the other expeditions the Reich was involved in, had all the earmarks of being more of a military movement which included a colonization. It was a well protected secret and part of a possible plan.
Base 211 is the alleged name for the underground complex and Nazi Redoubt
According to the "Guinness Book of World Records", the largest unsolved Bank Heist recorded in history is that of the entire contents of the Reichs Bank at the end of WWII. The entire nations economy disappeared. It is like somebody taking over the United States, then come into Fort Knox and all of the Gold is gone.
If a group could remove an entire nations economy, it means they have a place and a plan for another day.....
In Berlin, on 2 May 1945, a Major Feodor Novikov of the Red Army ordered the vaults of the Reichbank to be opened. Still in the vaults were 90 gold bars worth 1.3 million dollars and gold coins worth 2.1 million dollars. Also 400 million dollars worth of negotiable bonds. Major Novikov ordered the vaults locked and demanded the keys. Shortly afterwards the entire contents of the vault disappeared. The gold was never seen again, but the bonds keep turning up even today all over the world. Another six and a half tons of gold, recovered from Ribbentrop's castle "Schloss Fuschl" near Salzburg and turned over to the US Army on 15 June 1945, also disappeared and no records of it being received at the Frankfurt US Foreign Exchange Depository can be found. In 1945 it was worth over seven million dollars. Much of the gold recovered by the Americans was re-smelted and in the process all hallmarks, Nazi symbols and identification numbers, were erased.
When the Allies came upon the huge cement encased submarine pens where the latest Nazi submarines were housed as many as 200 of them were unaccounted for. Most of these had the latest Schorchel attachment which could allow for a transatlantic crossing undetected as there was no need to surface to re-supply air and recharge the batteries.
After the fall of Germany. when the allies came upon all the technology found at Nordhausen, Peenemünde and Thüringen, covert plans went into action to procure the projects, the documentation and the people working on these various programs. Operations Sunrise, Lusty and Paperclip went into action to accomplish these goals. One of the biggest mysteries at the end of World War II is what happened to most of these people. They seemed to fall off the face of the earth. The highest man in charge of most "Black Operations" in Nazi Germany, Obergruppenführer Dr Ing. SS General Hans Kammler
, was never found and not even searched for by Simon Wiesenthal the famous Jewish Nazi hunter, and most of the scientists, engineers and technicians, estimated by various researchers to range anywhere from a couple of thousand to six thousands, just disappeared after the war never to be found. A small handful however were taken and in one way or another continued their work for the victorious allies.
Towards the end of World War Two German engineers and scientists researched increasingly advanced [and occasionally outlandish] projects in a vain attempt to halt the inexorable advance of Allied forces. During this period prototypes were produced of combat and cargo carrying helicopters, advanced, Delta wing, high altitude, high performance jet fighters and bombers and ground-to-air missiles. Some projects still in their early stages as the war ended sounded more like science fiction and included directed energy weapons intended to destroy or disable enemy bombers.
However, as the situation in the Third Reich became more desperate, some of this research moved into esoteric and even occult areas. In particular the SS were involved in projects which are still shrouded in mystery. One of these projects was overseen by SS General Hans Kammler, who became one of the most powerful men in Hitlers Germany and one of the most wanted men in Europe. The precise nature of the work he was involved in towards the end of the war has provoked intense speculation with suggestions ranging from the development of nuclear weapons to the design and manufacture of a flying saucer. Whatever it was that he was working on, Kammler disappeared in May 1945 and there were at least three contradictory and conflicting accounts of his death and his body was never found.
But its not just that disappearance, one of the most intriguing things about Hans Kammler is the way in which his name disappeared from the historical record. Kammler is almost unique amongst senior Nazis, and particularly those close to Himmler, because one will find him almost completely absent from the plethora of books and papers written about Nazi Germany which appeared after the war and he was barely mentioned during the Nurmberg Trails. Even now, many people who are familiar with the history of Nazi Germany remain unaware of Kammler.
Many Intelligence officers and other Nazi high officials also disappeared.
Even mainstream historians admit that the Nazis were meticulous in records keeping, yet at the end of the war, although records could account for citizens killed in bombings, troops taken prisoner or missing in action, taken to concentration camps, in spite of their efforts there remained almost 200,000 people from the general population that are still unaccounted for.
Any one of these situations alone would be a curious mystery but when they are added all together, they demand the realization that a relocation and colonization had taken place. If not then what happen to all of the money and people?
The man in charge of this exodus is supposed to be none other than Hans Kammler. Urban legend or veiled truth? Admiral Dönitz the highest Nazi Navel officer may have alluded several times to this Antarctic Redoubt. Were these references to Base 211?
The place where Hitler sought refuge comprises a surface of fantastic expanse -6,205,000 square miles- much more than the area of Europe. This land is the Antarctic, the Seventh Continent of the world. Its inhospitable regions are difficult to enter and are not inhabited by any other human beings. This, then, was the ingenious element of Hitler's plan of flight: instead of seeking an isle, here was an entire continent available as Hitler's Shangri-La. As unbelievable as this idea appears at first glance it was the result of calculation. The logic in the Nazis' train of deliberation readily foresaw that the Antarctic would serve as an ideal hiding place for the Dictator because it was far from the inhabited world, just as remote as another planet. Here the Führer could exist in absolute safety and here he could once again plan his revenge, his comeback at an hour when events would be favorable. The idea to create for Hitler an absolutely safe refuge was the decisive factor in the choice. For the Nazis foresaw that even if Hitler's presence in the Seventh Continent were known, a search for him would practically be impossible. How could the Allies search every nook and corner of this vast expanse, with its plains, valleys, mountains and glaciers covered with ice and snow? Thousands of polar explorers with suitable equipment would be required to explore even a trifling slice of this immense territory - and the Nazis did not intend to render Hitler's hideout visible from the air.
At any rate, at this point, there are the following questions to be answered: (a) Was Hitler's group able to reach the Antarctic Continent? (b) Are there proofs or indications that he traveled in the direction of Antarctica? (c) Were the Führer and his aides able to live all these years in the inhospitable reaches of this Continent? (d) Did the Nazis undertake preparations for the construction of Hitler's refuge in Antarctica?
To answer these four questions satisfactorily would furnish an explanation not only of the mystery of Hitler's disappearance but also of his present whereabouts, of the final refuge where the man from the tiny town of Braunau, Austria, waits for the proper moment to make a comeback on the stage of world history.
Concerning the first question, it can be stated beyond the slightest doubt that Hitler and his group reached the Antarctic Continent without any difficulty. During the larger part of the trip, which was negotiated under water, the phantom convoy in this fashion could have avoided a blockade only if there was no blockade to be evaded. Once the convoy had arrived in the Antarctic zone, there was no fear of the presence of anybody who might have reported its presence. True, on certain points of the Antarctic Continent existed a U.S. base and a British mission. However, the Nazis knew the location of the latter and took pains to keep at a distance. The fact that the U-530 and the U-977 surrendered at Mar del Plata, Argentina, is stark proof that the Phantom Convoy went southward, in the direction of the Seventh Continent. In examining the itinerary covered by these two Nazi subs from their departure from Norway, the sole conclusion which can be arrived at is that the line traced thus far was broken at the latitude of Mar del Plata and that its extension would undoubtedly have led the rest of the convoy to the Antarctic. Where would the line have terminated?A simple glance at the map suffices to furnish a logical reply.
The history of the expeditions carried out in the 20th Century furnishes the most eloquent proof that a group of persons under certain conditions could exist in these regions throughout the entire year. The Byrd expeditions have demonstrated the miracle of technological progress as applied to survival in these remote corners of our globe. The members of these expeditions did not suffer any privations. Photographs of the members of these expeditions, showing them with bare upper bodies caressed by the Antarctic sun, show in irrefutable manner that a human being, if equipped with proper resources, can exist throughout the entire year in the vastness of the Antarctic Continent without any damage to his health and without the necessity of lowering his living standard. It is safe to assume that the Nazis did everything in the way of preparations so as to construct a comfortable refuge in this Seventh Continent. And there are proofs.
Even if we disregard Dönitz' assertions concerning that "paradise on land" and "impregnable fortress" which had been constructed for the Führer by the Nazi Navy there are additional facts of circumstantial evidence. Toward the end of the second expedition by Byrd, and after the Ellsworth expedition which explored a zone that was later on claimed by Australia, the Norwegians, the British and even the Japanese seized parts of the Seventh Continent. All this happened during the years preceding the Second World War. Then on 2 January 1938, it was announced at Moscow that preparations had been concluded for a South Polar expedition under Vodopyanov. But this venture never came off. On the other hand, a German mission appeared in the Antarctic Continent toward the end of 1938, without any previous announcement. It returned the following year. This expedition caused world-wide surprise.
"In carrying out this mission, I have merely executed the orders of Marshal Göring," declared Capt. Alfred Ritscher, after his return to Hamburg on board the 'Schwabenland' on 12 April 1939. According to this officer's statement, the purpose of the expedition had been to study the feasibility of whaling in these international waters, since the Reich was much in need of all sorts of fats. It so happens that the motor vessel 'Schwabenland' was not an ordinary ship. It was, rather, a floating island. It belonged to the Lufthansa, which had placed the vessel, with its complement of technicians and planes, at the disposal of the expedition. There were two planes on the 'Schwabenland', both amphibians weighing ten tons each. Among the flight personnel attached to the 'Schwabenland' were fliers who had experience in Arctic aerial reconnaissance. They now were able to collect photographic aerial surveys of large and previously unmapped stretches of Antarctica. For their specific mission these planes had been equipped with powerful Zeiss cameras. With typical German arrogance, Capt. Ritscher let the cat out of the bag when he made his statement concerning his aerial reconnaissance activities over the South Pole:
"For the first time German planes flew over the Antarctic Continent. Under extremely difficult conditions, they landed in the vicinity of the South Pole and there raised the German flag designating the sovereignly of the Reich. Every 25 kilometers our planes dropped pennants with the colors of the Reich and thus marked the boundaries of their flights. We covered an area of about 600,000 square kilometers. Of these, about 350,000 were accurately photographed, thus yielding a suitable map of the region".
In other words, Ritscher had started out to study whales and had ended by staking out for the Reich some 600,000 square kilometers. Ritscher added: "There rises a vast plateau at an altitude of about 12,000 feet which extends toward the South Pole. And within this territory mapped by our planes there rise mountain ranges up to a height of an additonal 9,000 feet".
Soon after this the curtain rose on the tragedy of the Second World War. The little Nazi pennants dropped in the icy wastes of the South Pole were generally forgotten. But the Nazis had not forgotten. During the first phases of the World War, their submarines prowled the North Atlantic, inflicting terrible damage on Allied shipping. Yet they refrained from any hostile acts throughout the South Atlantic, where commentators thought their bases were along the extreme southeastern coast of South America.
Martin Bormann Seen in Chile
Martin Bormann was spotted in Chile in1948 by a former acquaintance of the Deputy and for several years a refugee in South America. This man together with a party of friends was riding horseback in the vicinity of an Indo settlement when they met three other riders. These riders were dressed in the gaucho fashion and wore large-brimmed hats shading their faces. Pulling his gun the former friend approached the man in the center who seemed strangely familiar to him. It was Martin Bormann. Bormann recognized him, then turned to his party and cried: "At the gallop". Thereupon the party cantered off at full speed toward the Argentine frontier. Several days later it was learned that Bormann was living in Chile under an assumed name.
A Nazi refugee in Chile who made inquiries concerning Bormann reported; "In strict confidence, Bormann has returned to Europe. He is hiding in Spain until his hour should come. The conflict with Russia is inevitable and then Martin Bormann's day will come, too. His friends here have spread the rumor that he had died in the course of his flight from the Reich Chancellery in Berlin!"
Several days later, "Paris-Presse" published the following story:
"Bayonne: The Police Bureau of Identification has photographed the complete set of paintings recently found near the frontier. The set will be forwarded shortly for exhibition in the National Museum. One of the canvases bears on its back the inscription: Martin Bormann, Reichleiter, Munich, and speaks for itself. There are rumors that Martin Bormann, allegedly a refugee staying in a secret hiding place in Spain, might have tried to retrieve some of his belongings and that the consignee in Madrid might well have been one of the members of the secret organization known as 'Free Germany' with headquarters in Madrid.
"Objects of art of this kind are now being smuggled constantly by elements operating in the Franco-Spanish border region. It may be supposed that some of the German ships which now are engaged in transporting lumber from the port of Bayonne, may have dropped some such cargo in the Bay of Ilbarritz where they could be fetched later on by some mysterious party".
Actually, the Nazi sub lairs were located much farther south, most probably on the very shores of the Antarctic Continent. These bases were destined to play a double role. When, toward the middle of 1940, Nazi subs suddenly ceased to operate, these bases changed into depots for accumulating the vast stores of material required for the subsequent setting up of Hitler's refuge. Clothes, food, fuel and every other conceivable item necessary for survival and for comfort were stored here. For the transportation of these stores, submarines were used exclusively. Undoubtedly, Dönitz' cryptic remark about the "paradise on land" referred to that phase of submarine operation.
Then, in August, 1940, Dr. Wilhelm Rohn, Director of the Reich Institute for Metals, launched an appeal to German technicians for construction of nonferrous metal which could be safely exposed to temperatures below 60o..
We know that iron, when subjected to temperatures of less than 60o becomes extremely brittle because its inner structure is subjected to fundamental changes. But where did the Nazis have any use for nonferrous constructions designed to resist low temperatures? Previously, some observers suggested Spitzbergen. Actually, it was the South Polar region where, since the middle of 1940, the Nazis had started to amass planes, tractors, sledges, gliders and all sorts of machinery and materials.
Some things do not change over the years. Weather forecast is still an important piece of information for every army. Due to the loss of ships and planes on missions that were supposed collected meteorological information, the German started to build land-based weather stations in the Arctic circle.
The German historian and Second World War specialist Franz Selinger, explained: "Getting the weather from so far north was a priority during the war because the air over Iceland is critical in determining the weather patterns over the North Atlantic. If you have people in Spitzbergen, then you know what is on the way".
One of the chosen places to build weather stations was on Svalbard, also known as Spitzbergen, which was actually never occupied by the German forces in the Second World War. The war about Svalbard was about access to weather forecasts.
Operation Zitronella, also known as Operation Sizilien [Sicily], was an eight-hour German raid on Spitzbergen on 8 September 1943.
During the Second World War, the Svalbard archipelago was the scene of a number of military operations. In August 1941, British, Canadian, and Free Norwegian Forces landed on Spitzbergen during Operation Gauntlet. This was aimed to destroy the islands' rich coal mines together with associated equipment and stores, it was correctly assumed the Germans intended to use. No attempt was made to establish a garrison, and the civilian population was evacuated.
In April 1942, a Norwegian force landed at Barentsburg in Operation Fritham, intended to establish a permanent presence in the islands. The operation met considerable difficulties, but by the summer of 1943, the Norwegians were well established.
Meanwhile, Nazi Germany had set up a number of manned meteorological stations in the Arctic to improve weather forecasts vital for the warfare against Allied convoys from the UK to the USSR. One of the first manned stations, "Knospe", was established in late 1941 in the inner part of Krossfjorden in the main island, commanded by H.R. Knöspel, following the evacuation of the Norwegian and Russian civilians that September.
The Kriegsmarine decided to evacuate the "Knospe" weather station during the summer of 1942, since the ice-free season made it vulnerable to Allied attack. The submarine U-435, under Kapitänleutnant Siegfried Strelow, was ordered to recover the six-man detachment, which it did on 23 August 1942 without Allied interference.
In September 1943, the German Naval Command decided to destroy Allied weather facilities and refuelling bases in the islands. Several settlements and outposts on Spitzbergen were defended by a garrison of 152 men from the Norwegian Armed Forces in exile. The assigned task force included the battleships 'Tirpitz' and 'Scharnhorst', plus nine destroyers.
During the bombardment, 'Tirpitz' fired 52 main-battery shells and 82 rounds from her 15 cm secondaries. This was the first and only time the ship fired her main battery at an enemy surface target.
On 8 September, the ships landed a battalion of German troops, supported by naval gunfire, who seized the installations at Barentsburg. The rest of the Norwegians fled into the Hinterland. After destroying the coal depots and other facilities, the German forces withdrew. Norwegian Captain Morten Bredsdorff and 30 others were sent to Oflag XXI-C in Schildberg in the German-annexed Reichsgau Wartheland, joining 1,089 Norwegian officers already interned there.
Under cover of the attack, the Luftwaffe installed a weather station on Hope Island. Isolated for months by Nazi Germany's surrender in May 1945, the airmen on Hope Island gave themselves up in September 1945 to the captain of a Norwegian fishing boat.
Despite its success, Operation Zitronella/Sizilien was only a qualified success. It brought no lasting benefit, since the Allies quickly returned to Spitzbergen and re-established the weather station. On 19 October 1943, the cruiser 'USS Tuscaloosa' arrived at Barentsburg with relief and reinforcements for the Norwegian garrison.
Samuel Eliot Morison dismisses Operation Zitronella as a political move on the part of the Kriegsmarine, aimed at showing Hitler that the German surface fleet had some value. Morison evaluates the effort as disproportionate to the results, suggesting that the same ends could have been achieved more simply:
"Dönitz decided to justify the existence of this surface navy and give it a little exercise by wiping out the Allied installations at Spitzbergen. [...] One destroyer could easily have done the job".
Here, then, was to rise the Führer's new Berchtesgaden. For the next four years, Nazi technicians and workers built here the Führer's Shangri-La. They scooped out an entire mountain and constructed a facsimile of the hollow mountain of Berchtesgaden, Hitler's ill-famed Eagle's Roost in the mountains of the South Bavarian Alps. The new refuge was practically impregnable and completely camouflaged. With the ingenuity of modern construction science, the Nazi engineers built a number of shelters completely protected against cold. Inside his magic mountain Hitler and his staff were able to grow their own vegetables and fruits in artificially-heated beds of black soil, also imported from the Reich. They could raise their own poultry and cattle. No doubt the Nazis had stored here thousands of tons of oil, naphtha, clothing, linen, medicines, canned foods, vitamin tablets, distillation apparatus, planes, tractors, arms, radio station equipment and all other things. In brief, everything so as to make it possible for Hitler and his aides to live here, if necessary, dozens of years.
Hitlers Antarctic base: the Myth and the Reality