A MISSING German submarine said to have taken the defeated Nazi leadership to South America has been discovered after being lost at sea for nearly 73 years. As with numerous other fascist-leaning South American leaders, Peron had been drawn to the ideologies of Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler while serving as a military attaché in Italy during the early years of World War II. Shortly after the German invasion, on June 22, 1941, ... Colonies kept in touch with each other through newspapers, especially Der Staats Anzeiger, based in North Dakota. But even after they and their children and their grandchildren are gone, they will have a legacy in South America. South America; Argentina; W alking through La Cumbrecita is a surreal experience. SS colonel Walter Rauff, who created mobile gas chambers that killed at least 100,000 people, died in Chile in 1984. Togoland was conquered by British forces from the Gold Coast (now Ghana) and by French forces from Dahomey (now Benin) in the first month of the war. https://www.history.com/news/how-south-america-became-a-nazi-haven During the American Revolution, there were many German states loosely unified under the Holy Roman Empire. share. But only one third of those named were ever brought to justice. The escape routes themselves came to be known as ratlines. In their attempts to aid Catholic refugees amid the post-war rise of communist regimes across Europe, numerous Vatican officials unwittingly aided in the escape of Nazi war criminals, but some clerics such as Bishop Alois Hudal did so with full knowledge of their actions. What he didn’t know is that the girl’s father was a holocaust survivor. In the years after the end of the war, Argentine President Juan Peron secretly ordered diplomats and intelligence officers to establish escape routes, so-called “ratlines,” through ports in Spain and Italy to smuggle thousands of former SS officers and Nazi party members out of Europe. Yes, the Nazi colonies will surely live on. These made the prospect of escape virtually impossible, but also kept outsiders far away. The 1888 proclamation of the annexation of Nauru by Germany was donated to the Library by Brigadier General Thomas Griffiths, the Administrator of Nauru, in 1921. A fact that the Argentine tourism board prefers not to promote is the large scale migration of Nazis into Argentina after the end of the Second World War. Everyone knew the war was ending and western leaders were already looking towards the next enemy: Soviet Russia. colonia Tovar is an example. They are descendants of Germans who immigrated to Argentina from Germany and elsewhere in Europe. But some were no where to be found, as if they had disappeared. For years the world’s most wanted Nazi was a man called Adolf Eichmann. Of all the towns, neighborhoods, and colonies built by them after the war, it’s inconceivable that none will survive. 1945 was an especially bad year. The German legal team that examined South American files in 2012 told the Daily Mail that most of the Nazis who entered the continent did so using forged Red Cross passports, including 800 SS members to Argentina alone. In 1946 allied forces published a list of 150 thousand war criminals. They often held prestigious jobs and positions in the local German speaking community. Not all Nazis on the run kept strictly to Nazi Colonies. I don’t know if you’re familiar with German history… but the 1940s were a real rough patch. In 1961 he fled to Chile, somehow convincing hundreds of others to go with him. (Credit: John Milli/GPO via Getty Images). And so a secretive cult of sex criminals genuinely operated their own colony in Chile, which became a haven for Nazis on the run and also a government torture camp. Many of these German states were officially Protestant, making them traditional allies of other Protestant nations, such as the United Kingdom of Great Britain, whose king, George III, was also the Prince-elector of Hanover. Without needing to pay community members for their work, Schafer instead invested in security. It’s called Colonia Dignidad and it was founded by Nazi official turned cult leader Paul Schafer. Throughout the '50s, '60s, and '70s, stories of former officials of the Third Reich hiding out in Argentina were common -- and they weren't just stories. As many as 5,000 Nazis went to Argentina; Between 1,500 and 2,000 ended up in Brazil The records of the German Foreign Office and the German Navy were microfilmed by the Australian Joint Copying Project in London in 195… As a German he didn’t feel the need to hide his true identity from her. German South West Africa, German Deutsch-Südwestafrika, a former German colony (1884–1919) that is now the nation of Namibia, in southwestern Africa.In 1883 Franz Adolf Lüderitz, a merchant from Bremen, Germany, established a trading post in southwest Africa at Angra Pequena, which he renamed Lüderitzbucht.He also acquired the adjacent coastal area, which he named Lüderitzland. 1. And then there were high ranking Nazis. But the craziest part of this story is that their colony still exists. There was also your mother. Adolf Eichmann (Credit: Adam Guz/Getty Images Poland/Getty Images). Germany lost all its overseas colonies after World War I, and therefore had none after WWII. More than two million artillery shells were dropped on the city. The papers of A.B. Many Nazi officials were killed or taken prisoner. After 4 months he was sentenced to death by hanging. It was the only death sentence ever given by an Israeli court. This would be an irrelevant piece of knowledge, if one of those camps had not been located within Colonia Dignidad. Schafer was but a low ranking Nazi, but was forced to flee Germany after being charged with the sexual abuse of children. Another haven for Nazis was the Argentine city of Bariloche, where in the 90s it was revealed many SS officers were hiding. But he could just have easily slipped away – and in the chaos of that time, escaped. And so the Americans put huge effort into this pursuit. It wasn’t long before the Israeli government knew so too. These were colonies unsuccessfully settled by Brandenburg-Prussia (part of the Holy Roman Empire realm), after 1701 Kingdom of Prussia, before the foundation of the German Empire in 1871.. Africa. So the prospect of hum being in Chile is not exactly absurd. Wituland (1885–1890) - si… (He, like his eventual acolyte, ended up committing suicide as his utopian colony failed.) Today in Peru the population Peruvians of German descent is approximately 160,000 people and hold many high positions in Government, Military and industry. Strangely these communities received a spike in population growth after the war… I’m sure it’s just a coincidence. According to a 2012 article in the Daily Mail, German prosecutors who examined secret files from Brazil and Chile discovered that as many as 9,000 Nazi officers and collaborators from other countries escaped from Europe to find sanctuary in South American countries. All Rights Reserved. Fearing Argentine authorities would offer him protection, they sent a team of agents into the country. The extracts from the Grundbuchwere transferred by the Administration of the Trust Territory of Nauru in 1958. I mean, it’s still a colony lived in by the descendants of Nazis, but somehow it’s become a destination for tourism… and I don’t know how. Adolf Eichmann, architect of the 'Final Solution,' was captured and executed in 1962. Klein-Venedig ("Little Venice"; also the etymology of the name "Venezuela") was the most significant part of the German colonization of the Americas, from 1528 to 1546, in which the Augsburg -based Welser banking family to the Habsburgs was given the colonial rights by Emperor Charles V, who was also King of Spain and owed debts to them for his Imperial election. So many made it that they were able to establish their own communities of former Nazis. Secret files reveal 9,000 Nazi war criminals fled to South America after WWII. Such a man could easily have died in the bombing of Berlin. By far the most notorious of such Nazi colonies can still be found in the Chilean Andes. Yet it’s unclear how exactly this was to be achieved, or even why. These involved reshaping it politically, abolishing all countries and dividing the continent into 4 fascist super states. Twice a week we compile our most fascinating features and deliver them straight to you. It’s secretive nature means little is known for certain about ODESSA. It’s surprising to learn that South America was a bit of a hotbed for anti-Semitism from the late 19th century – and indeed that one of its most famous German immigrants, Bernhard Förster, was a key influence on Hitler’s political thinking. The British colonies in the West Indies were under direct threat by German submarines, who were hunting for oil tankers and bauxite carriers making … In 1955, Gen. Alfredo Stroessner, a grandson of immigrants from Bavaria, opened Paraguay to former Nazis. In those days South America seemed like a different world to Europe. Tim Kennedy further discusses the history of Nazi's who escaped to South America. After the war he took a ratline to Argentina. Ruanda-Urundi (1885–1917) - became a League of Nations mandate under Belgium, attached to its Congo colony - present-day Rwanda and Burundi 1.3. But researchers were not the only thing thousands of soldiers were aggressively looking for. Adolf Eichmann on trial, April 21, 1961 in Jerusalem. In Israel he was put on trial, a trial that lasted 4 months and broadcast in it’s entirety. Eduard Roschmann, the “Butcher of Riga,” died in Paraguay in 1977. For ten years they lived a quiet life in Buenos Aires, Eichmann working at a nearby Mercedes factory. Knowing the war could genuinely be lost, some within the SS realized they might need to flee for their lives. In 1961 became independent and in 1964 joined with former British protectorate of the sultanate of Zanzibar to form present-day Tanzania 1.2. According to Uki Goñi, author of “The Real Odessa: Smuggling the Nazis to Peron’s Argentina,” the Peron government in 1946 sent word through Argentine Cardinal Antonio Caggiano to a French counterpart that the South American country would be willing to receive Nazi collaborators from France who faced potential war crimes prosecution. The most senior Nazi whose fate even today remains unknown was Heinrich Muller. They typically led to dictatorships whose government was sympathetic to Nazism. It’s fair to say they weren’t happy about it. Steinberger formed part of the Ferguson Collection which was received in 1970. As the years turned to decades, rumor spread that high ranking Nazis were being shielded in the colony. FACT CHECK: We strive for accuracy and fairness. Decolonization after 1945 The reasons why decolonization took place are many and complex, varying widely from one country to another. Klaus Barbie outside the Lyons court house following his sentencing on July 4, 1987. Find out how and why South America became a safe haven for thousands of former Nazi party members and SS officers after World War II. The street signs are in German. Paraguay: A Quaint Inn with a Dark Nazi Past - TIME; Why did so many Germans choose to move to Argentina after. Muller was director of Germany’s secret police, a close confidant of Hitler, and a notorious figure ominously known as “Gestapo Muller”. By the time it was all falling apart in Germany, there were sympathetic regimes across the continent – the most pro… Some were relatively short, leading to Spain or the middle east. It’s thought over ten thousand Nazi officials successfully fled to South America after the war. During his reign tens of thousands of people were abducted and sent to secret camps, where many of them would killed. The history of Latin America during World War II is important because of the significant economic, political, and military changes that occurred throughout much of the region as a result of the war. Josef Mengele, who evaded capture, c. 1950. Perhaps the most notorious of the fugitives was Dr. Josef Mengele, the “Angel of Death” who conducted macabre experiments at the Auschwitz concentration camp. Of all the towns, neighborhoods, and colonies built by them after the war, it’s inconceivable that none will survive. A Map of Nazi South America (Forged by the British) - Big. 81 comments. Soon after, the German Moravians founded the town of Salem in 1766 (now a historical section in the center of Winston-Salem) and Salem College (an early female college) in 1772. Little is known of their activity in those early years but the colony grew steadily. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us! Adopting the name Ricardo Klement, he settled in the Argentine capital with his family. (Credit: Keystone/Getty Images). The SECRET Nazi Colonies In South America - Eskify; Why did the European states have to give up their colonies. As soon as he heard the name Eichmann, the father realized who they were dealing with. How could so many escape when the whole world was closing in on them? Brazil took in between 1,500 and 2,000 Nazi war criminals, while between 500 and 1,000 settled in Chile. But most importantly, many South American governments were sympathetic to the Nazi cause and proved willing to help. When there the team abducted Eichmann and smuggled him out of the country. It was a former Nazi’s wet dream. South America. So they kidnapped him. Only on arriving in Israel did the Argentine government learn of the operation. Buried under an assumed name after drowning off the Brazilian coast in 1979, Mengele had his identity confirmed only after forensic testing of his remains in 1985. It’s pure vastness and variety of terrain made it perfect to hide away in. In some cases, the United States was complicit in the exodus of Nazi war criminals to South America. The hunt was on to find the renowned scientists of Germany. It wont be long now until no former Nazis are left alive. These are colonies settled by and controlled by the German Empire from 1884 to 1919. Across the continent there are still small pockets where German is the common language. In 1922 became a League of Nations mandate under the United Kingdom. One hundred thousand either died or escaped. Some Nazi colonies were rich and influential enough to help shape the modern history of South America. Argentine dictator Juan Peron actively encouraged Nazis to come to Argentina, promising protection and a new life. It’s known he spent time there, in Paraguay and in Brazil, where he died a free man. Due to the hundreds of thousands of German immigrants who lived in the country, Argentina maintained close ties with Germany and remained neutral for much of World War II. And while some Nazi colonies, like Colonia Dignidad and figures like Eichmann are well known – there could well be all kinds of people and places still hidden, waiting to be found. They were free to torture as much as they wish, and no matter what, they were protected by the government. Barbie became one of the few Nazis who fled to South America but ultimately couldn’t escape justice, much like Eichmann who was also convicted of crimes against humanity by an Israeli court and executed in 1962. Eichmann was hardly alone among Nazis in finding refuge in South America after the fall of the Third Reich. European Colonies in North America. Many headed for Brazil, Chile, Bolivia, and beyond. It turns out they had been planning on doing so for quite some time. Germany was not as involved in colonizing Africa as other major European powers of the 20th century, and lost its overseas colonies, including German East Africa and German South West Africa, after World War I. The Argentine president also sought to recruit those Nazis with particular military and technical expertise that he believed could help his country, much like the United States and the Soviet Union who both poached scientists from the Third Reich to assist them in the Cold War. So many made it to Argentina that the FBI began to investigate if Hitler himself could have. So the cameras were built into the walls of the courtroom and the trial was seen around the world. He was a religious leader and the head of an orphanage. 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