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FTR #532 Interview with John Loftus

Record­ed Novem­ber 6, 2005
Lis­ten:
MP3 Side 1 [1] | Side 2 [2]
RealAu­dio [3]

Intro­duc­tion: In this inter­view with the hero­ic John Lof­tus, we revis­it the sub­jects of the Vat­i­can Bank and the Vat­i­can’s long involve­ment with fas­cism. After dis­cussing a sum­mit that John is help­ing to arrange between mem­bers of the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty and mem­bers of the gen­er­al pub­lic to dis­cuss the war on ter­ror, the pro­gram focus­es on John’s land­mark book Unholy Trin­i­ty [4] and a law­suit he helped to file against the Vat­i­can Bank for loot­ing the wealth of Holo­caust vic­tims, aid­ing the escape of Nazi war crim­i­nals, and using the stolen mon­ey and the fugi­tives to wage covert oper­a­tions dur­ing the Cold War.

In Unholy Trin­i­ty, John (and his co-author Mark Aarons) doc­u­ment a long his­to­ry of col­lu­sion between the Vat­i­can and Nazi Ger­many, going back to the imme­di­ate after­math of World War I. After invest­ing mil­lions of dol­lars in Ger­man (lat­er Nazi) indus­try, the Vat­i­can col­lab­o­rat­ed with U.S. cor­po­rate inter­ests to safe­guard the Nazi trea­sury, spir­it­ing the wealth out of Europe after the War. This cap­i­tal was recy­cled back to Ger­many in the 1950’s and was used to fund the so-called “Ger­man eco­nom­ic miracle”—that coun­try’s eco­nom­ic revival. (Vet­er­an lis­ten­ers will rec­og­nize this con­cate­na­tion’s posi­tion with­in the con­stel­la­tion of the Bor­mann flight-cap­i­tal pro­gram.)

Much of the pro­gram focus­es on the Vat­i­can’s “Ratlines”—the escape net­works that were set up to help fugi­tive Nazis escape jus­tice. Many of the most noto­ri­ous Nazi war crim­i­nals escaped with the help of this net­work, which was oper­at­ed with the knowl­edge and bless­ings of the high­est offi­cials of the Church.

Pro­gram High­lights Include: The decades-long col­lab­o­ra­tion between the Vat­i­can and the pow­er­ful Wall Street law firm of Sul­li­van & Cromwell in pro­tect­ing their mutu­al invest­ment in Nazi indus­try; the his­to­ry of US cor­po­rate invest­ments in Nazi Ger­many; the involve­ment of West­ern (includ­ing Amer­i­can) intel­li­gence agen­cies in the oper­a­tion of the Rat­lines; the role of Argen­tine dic­ta­tor Juan Per­on in the exo­dus of Nazi cap­i­tal and fugi­tive war crim­i­nals from Europe; the role of the World Com­merce Cor­po­ra­tion in the flight of Nazi wealth from Europe after the war; the shel­ter­ing of some of the worst Nazi crim­i­nals in the Pope’s sum­mer res­i­dence at Castel­gan­dol­fo; the con­tin­u­ing cov­er-up by the gov­ern­ment of Argenti­na in that coun­try’s con­spir­a­cy to aid fugi­tive Nazis; the con­tin­u­ing cov­er-up by Vat­i­can relat­ed ele­ments in Italy of the true extent of Church com­plic­i­ty in the escape of fugi­tive Nazis; the chan­nel­ing of Vat­i­can mon­ey to Hitler in 1919; the role of Popes Pius XII and Paul VI in the Vatican/Nazi con­spir­a­cy.

1. The broad­cast begins with John’s dis­cus­sion of a project with which he’s involved called “Intel­li­gence Sum­mit.” This is a meet­ing sched­uled for Pres­i­dents’ Day Week­end in 2006 in Wash­ing­ton D.C. Bring­ing togeth­er ele­ments of the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ties of numer­ous coun­tries, the gath­er­ing offers the oppor­tu­ni­ty for mem­bers of the work­ing press and the gen­er­al pub­lic to share infor­ma­tion with these intel­li­gence pro­fes­sion­als, and vice ver­sa. The only stip­u­la­tion is that non-intel­li­gence atten­dees can­not divulge the infor­ma­tion that they learn there any­where else.

2. The bal­ance of the pro­gram con­sists of dis­cus­sion and analy­sis of John’s book Unholy Trin­i­ty: The Vat­i­can, The Nazis and the Swiss Banks [5] (co-authored with Mark Aarons.) Before dis­cussing the book, we not­ed the rein­state­ment of a law­suit for which John was the intel­li­gence advis­er. Note that the law­suit was rein­stat­ed by an Amer­i­can appel­late court at the same time as Car­di­nal Ratzinger was appoint­ed Pope.

“A fed­er­al appeals court stepped into the con­tro­ver­sy over the Catholic Church’s rela­tions with Nazi regimes dur­ing World War II on Mon­day, rein­stat­ing a law­suit by Holo­caust sur­vivors against the Vat­i­can Bank for alleged­ly prof­it­ing from prop­er­ty loot­ed by the Ustasha pup­pet gov­ern­ment in Croa­t­ia. . . .”

“Court Revives Suit Against Vat­i­can Bank” by Bob Egelko; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 4/19/2005; p. A6. [6]

3. ” . . . The Ustasha took pow­er in Croa­t­ia after the Ger­man inva­sion in 1941 and estab­lished death camps in which as many as 700,000 peo­ple, most­ly Serbs, were killed, accord­ing to a U.S. gov­ern­ment report cit­ed by the court. A sep­a­rate State Depart­ment report said Ustasha lead­ers found sanc­tu­ary in a papal insti­tu­tion in Rome after the war, with a trea­sury of over $80 mil­lion. The suit claims much of the mon­ey had been stolen from Serbs, Jews, Gyp­sies, Ukraini­ans and oth­ers under Ustasha dom­i­na­tion and was kept in the Vat­i­can Bank, where it was used in part to finance the relo­ca­tion of Nazi fugi­tives. [Ital­ics are Mr. Emory’s.] The plaintiffs—who seek class-action sta­tus on behalf of all those affected—want resti­tu­tion of their loss­es and any prof­its gained by the bank. . . .”

(Idem.)

4. After dis­cussing John’s law­suit, the pro­gram high­lights Unholy Trin­i­ty. Barred from writ­ing about the Vatican/Nazi/intelligence con­nec­tions because of his high secu­ri­ty clear­ances, John and asso­ciates recruit­ed a young man of Croa­t­ian her­itage, who spoke flu­ent Ser­bo-Croa­t­ian. Pos­ing as a young Ustashi enthu­si­ast, he was able to inter­view some of the sur­viv­ing vil­lains of the Vatican/Croatian/Nazi col­lab­o­ra­tion. Think­ing him to be a kin­dred soul, they “spilled the beans” into a tape-record­ed micro­phone. With the veil of secre­cy hav­ing been thus breached, John received clear­ance to go ahead with the pub­li­ca­tion of his book.

5. Next, the pro­gram turns to dis­cus­sion of the gen­e­sis of the Nazi/Vatican Bank con­nec­tion, which is at the foun­da­tion of Lof­tus’ law­suit. The sto­ry begins with the Webb/Pomerene act—a loop­hole in the Amer­i­can anti-trust leg­is­la­tion that legal­izes the for­ma­tion of car­tels (inter­na­tion­al monop­o­lies.) In pos­ses­sion of the tremen­dous wealth of the U.S. boom that began with World War I and con­tin­ued through the 1920’s, the “Rob­ber Barons” of the Amer­i­can pow­er elite were free to net­work with their coun­ter­parts abroad (chiefly in Ger­many and Japan) in order to monop­o­lize inter­na­tion­al world trade.

” . . . The 1920’s and ear­ly 1930’s were a prof­itable time for Amer­i­can investors in Ger­many. The break-up of the Amer­i­can car­tels at the end of the nine­teenth cen­tu­ry, fol­lowed by Ted­dy Roo­sevelt’s ‘trust-bust­ing’ leg­is­la­tion in the 1910’s, induced the ear­ly multi­na­tion­al cor­po­ra­tions to seek a more friend­ly clime off­shore. Ger­many not only per­mit­ted car­tels and ver­ti­cal monop­o­lies, it encour­aged them as a means to rebuild its indus­tri­al might after the dev­as­ta­tion of World War I and the Ver­sailles repa­ra­tions.”

(Unholy Trin­i­ty; p. 291.)

6. “More­over, from the late 1920’s the Ger­man econ­o­my, although cash poor, was sci­en­tif­i­cal­ly advanced. As the Weimar Repub­lic began to dis­in­te­grate under the weight of inter­nal chaos and exter­nal greed, Ger­man sci­en­tists, spon­sored by Ger­man cor­po­ra­tions, led the world in research in physics, chem­istry, and biol­o­gy. So esteemed was the Ger­man intel­lec­tu­al edge at the end of the 1920’s that Amer­i­can sci­en­tists who wished to make their mark would take their advanced degree at a Ger­man uni­ver­si­ty.”

(Idem.)

7. “Effec­tive­ly, Ger­many had a vir­tu­al high-tech monop­oly on advanced pro­duc­tion tech­niques, rigid­ly rein­forced through a sys­tem of world­wide patents that gave it a decid­ed advan­tage. If the Du Pont Cor­po­ra­tion, for exam­ple, want­ed a license for chem­i­cal process­es, it had to deal with Berlin.”

(Idem.)

8. At the epi­cen­ter of the Nazi money/Vatican/Robber Baron con­nec­tion is Sul­li­van & Cromwell, the pow­er­ful white-shoe law firm, whose best known part­ners were Allen and John Fos­ter Dulles. (Under Pres­i­dent Eisen­how­er, Allen Dulles became CIA direc­tor, while John Fos­ter became Sec­re­tary of State.) Allen Dulles han­dled the Bush fam­i­ly’s invest­ments in Nazi Ger­many.

“Sul­li­van & Cromwell’s Amer­i­can clients, in turn, had some­thing that the Ger­mans want­ed bad­ly: gold. Under the Ver­sailles Treaty, Ger­many had to pay its repa­ra­tions to the Allies in gold bul­lion. In 1924, Sul­li­van & Cromwell stepped into the breach with the inge­nious Dawes Plan. In its sim­plest form, the Dulles broth­ers’ clients would loan gold to Ger­many, so that it could repay its repa­ra­tions to France and Britain, which would then recy­cle the Amer­i­can gold to repay their war loans to Amer­i­ca. It was a crazy mer­ry-go-round, but it worked.”

(Ibid.; pp. 291–292.)

9. “The attrac­tion for Sul­li­van & Cromwell’s clients was that the Ger­mans paid off the orig­i­nal Amer­i­can gold loans with stock in Ger­man cor­po­ra­tions. Unlike the hyper­in­flat­ed Deutsch mark, Ger­man stocks and bonds were far from worth­less, as they were backed by the very patents and trade secrets that Amer­i­can indus­try so des­per­ate­ly sought. With the crash of 1929, the Amer­i­can econ­o­my went into the Great Depres­sion, but simul­ta­ne­ous­ly Sul­li­van & Cromwell’s clients poured bil­lions into the Ger­man econ­o­my. For exam­ple, John Fos­ter Dulles’s legal records show that he han­dled the trans­fer of $10 bil­lion worth of gold in return for Ger­man bonds and invest­ments. By some esti­mates, 70 per­cent of the mon­ey that went to rebuild the Ger­man econ­o­my after World War I came from Wall Street investors, most of whom sought the legal coun­sel of Sul­li­van & Cromwell. . . .”

(Idem.)

10. ” . . . The secret strings of Ger­man invest­ment were held by Amer­i­can lawyers sit­ting on the boards of Ger­man banks and cor­po­ra­tions. Allen Dulles, for exam­ple, sat on the board of the Schroder Bank, with offices in Lon­don, New York, and Berlin. Osten­si­bly owned by a promi­nent Ger­man bank­ing fam­i­ly, the real con­trollers were Sul­li­van & Cromwell’s clients. . . .”

(Ibid.; p. 293.)

11. Next, the pro­gram high­lights the gen­e­sis of the Vatican/Nazi mon­ey con­nec­tion, which was cen­tral to the real­iza­tion of the American/Nazi mon­ey-go-round. Arch­bish­op Euge­nio Pacel­li (lat­er Pope Pius XII) was the Papal Nun­cio to Munich Ger­many. He gave Vat­i­can mon­ey to Hitler in 1919 to fight com­mu­nism in Ger­many. Fol­low­ing the Lat­er­an Treaty of 1929 between the Vat­i­can and Mus­solin­i’s fas­cist gov­ern­ment in Italy, the large finan­cial wind­fall the Vat­i­can obtained from Mus­soli­ni was invest­ed in Ger­man heavy indus­try. (For more on the Vatican/Nazi mon­ey link, see RFA#‘s 17–21 [7], avail­able from Spit­fire.)

” . . . Sul­li­van & Cromwell’s clients were not the only for­eign investors in Ger­many, nor were they the only ones to hedge their bets by mak­ing small dona­tions to the infant Nazi par­ty. Fol­low­ing the $26 mil­lion cash set­tle­ment with Mus­soli­ni over dis­put­ed lands in 1929, the Vat­i­can invest­ed near­ly all the pro­ceeds in Ger­man indus­try, but at least one small invest­ment was made in the Nazis as well. The fol­low­ing inci­dent was report­ed by an eye­wit­ness, Sis­ter Pas­cali­na, a nun who was the per­son­al aide (and devot­ed admir­er) of the Papal Nun­cio in Munich and the man who would become Pope Pius XII on the eve of World War II: ‘Hitler came one night to the holy res­i­dence of Arch­bish­op Euge­nio Pacel­li (lat­er Pius XII). All oth­ers in the house­hold were asleep by then, except [Sis­ter] Pas­cali­na . . . . Hitler told Pacel­li that he was out to check the spread of athe­is­tic com­mu­nism. . . . It did not come as a sur­prise to her, there­fore, in light of Pacel­li’s hatred of the Reds, to see the prelate present Hitler with a large cache of Church mon­ey to aid the ris­ing rev­o­lu­tion­ary and his small strug­gling band of anti-com­mu­nists.’ . . . .”

(Ibid.; pp. 294–295.)

12. After tak­ing pow­er, Hitler passed laws ren­der­ing the West­ern industrialist/Nazi mon­ey links more opaque. This even­tu­al­i­ty cement­ed the part­ner­ship between the Nazis, the Vat­i­can and the U.S. mon­ey men—a con­nec­tion that was to prove cen­tral to the post­war laun­der­ing of Nazi wealth, as well as its recy­cling back to dri­ve the Ger­man “eco­nom­ic mir­a­cle” of the 1950’s.

” . . . It is no coin­ci­dence that the Swiss passed a law in 1934 mak­ing dis­clo­sure of Swiss bank accounts a crime. In the same year, Sul­li­van & Cromwell offi­cial­ly closed its Berlin office. From 1934, Switzer­land was the cen­ter of the Dulles broth­ers’ oper­a­tions. With so much of its own hold­ings tied up in Nazi Ger­many, the Vat­i­can had lit­tle option but to adopt the same course.”

(Ibid.; p. 295.)

13. The real­iza­tion of the Vatican/Nazi/U.S. finan­cial axis was com­plet­ed with the imple­men­ta­tion of the IOR—the Vat­i­can Bank.

“The Holy See devised a spe­cial shield to help pro­tect it from the loom­ing inter­na­tion­al conflict—its own finan­cial insti­tu­tion, the Vat­i­can Bank. This was the one mon­e­tary enti­ty in the world that was com­plete­ly immune from out­side audits, pro­tect­ed by Vat­i­can sov­er­eign­ty, and with the added con­ve­nience of diplo­mat­ic immu­ni­ty. Dur­ing the War, the Dulles broth­ers and the Vat­i­can were drawn into a sym­bi­ot­ic rela­tion­ship: Sul­li­van & Cromwell’s investors need­ed the Vat­i­can Bank to laun­der their prof­its under the watch­ful eyes of both the Nazis and their own gov­ern­ments, while the Vat­i­can need­ed the Dulles broth­ers to pro­tect its own invest­ments in Hitler’s Ger­many. . . .”

(Idem.)

14. The pro­gram sets forth the man­ner in which Allen Dulles, the Vat­i­can and the Third Reich helped recy­cle the Nazi wealth from Europe to Argenti­na, and then back to Ger­many.

” . . . Few who watch the film Evi­ta would rec­og­nize that the Per­on fam­i­ly of Argenti­na worked direct­ly with the Croa­t­ian Ustashi to estab­lish a pipeline from the Vat­i­can Bank. As recount­ed ear­li­er in this book, Ante Pavel­ic him­self, the Croa­t­ian Nazi leader, moved to Buenos Aires and became a ‘secu­ri­ty advis­er’ to the Per­ons. Laun­dered through the ‘untrace­able’ Vat­i­can Bank, the Nazi trea­sure moved from Switzer­land to South Amer­i­ca. There the stolen funds were invest­ed in a num­ber of Argen­tine busi­ness­es whose lawyer was, of course, Allen Dulles.”

(Ibid.; p. 300.)

15. Among the vehi­cles used in the Vat­i­can-assist­ed Nazi flight cap­i­tal was the World Com­merce Cor­po­ra­tion. Fea­tur­ing for­mer OSS chief William Dono­van and for­mer British head of intel­li­gence for North Amer­i­can William Stephen­son, this orga­ni­za­tion epit­o­mized the syn­the­sis of busi­ness and espi­onage. For more about the WCC, see—among oth­er pro­grams—FTR#‘s 504 [8], 508 [9].

“As the final act of the mon­ey laun­der­ing, Dulles cre­at­ed the World Com­merce Cor­po­ra­tion to revive trade between Argenti­na and West Ger­many. On its board were such nota­bles as William Dono­van of US intel­li­gence, and William Stephen­son of British intel­li­gence. Dur­ing the 1950’s, much of the stolen pro­ceeds were laun­dered back to Ger­many for the great eco­nom­ic revival of West Ger­many.”

(Idem.)

16. “In the end, the mon­ey went back to the orig­i­nal Ger­man com­pa­nies and their West­ern investors. It is not Swiss bank accounts that we should be trac­ing; it is the stock own­er­ship of the Swiss banks. There lies the last and per­haps the ugli­est secret of World War II. And there­in lies the major cul­pa­bil­i­ty of the Vat­i­can in the rela­tions with Hitler’s Ger­many: with­out the Vat­i­can’s invest­ments in the Third Reich there could not have been the motive to pro­vide the means to smug­gle the Nazis’ plun­dered loot from Switzer­land through the Vat­i­can Bank. . . .”

(Idem.)

17. Next, the pro­gram turns to the sub­ject of the “Ratlines”—the Vat­i­can Nazi-smug­gling effort con­duct­ed in con­junc­tion with ele­ments of West­ern (and U.S.) intel­li­gence. Some of the most impor­tant Nazis escaped via the Vat­i­can net­work, includ­ing Adolph Eich­mann, the super­vi­sor of the exter­mi­na­tion of the Jews. In addi­tion to Pius XII him­self, Car­di­nal Mon­ti­ni (lat­er Pope Paul VI), Bish­op Alois Hudal and Father Kunoslav Draganovic over­saw the net­works. One of the prin­ci­pal Nazi fig­ures in set­ting up the Rat­lines was Wal­ter Rauff, who devised the mobile gas cham­bers dur­ing the war. Rauff, in turn, worked with SS offi­cer Friedrich Schwendt, who over­saw Oper­a­tion Bern­hard and Oper­a­tion Wendig (“Win­dow”), the forg­ing of British pound notes in order to destroy the British war econ­o­my and finance the Rat­lines.

” . . . Fol­low­ing the col­lapse of Mus­solin­i’s regime in Sep­tem­ber 1943, Rauff was dis­patched to north­ern Italy where he served with the SS in the region around Genoa, Turin and Milan. Once again, his assign­ment was the exter­mi­na­tion of the Jew­ish pop­u­la­tion. It was dur­ing this peri­od that Hudal made con­tact with this noto­ri­ous mass mur­der­er. The gen­e­sis of Hudal’s and Rauf­f’s friend­ship is some­thing of a mys­tery. Alfred Jarschel, a for­mer Nazi Youth leader, claims that Rauff first met Hudal in the spring of 1943, when Deputy Fuhrer Mar­tin Bor­mann sent him to Rome for six months with­out any appar­ent mis­sion. This was at a time when the Reich des­per­ate­ly need­ed senior offi­cers of Rauf­f’s expe­ri­ence and cal­iber as the war’s out­come still hung in the bal­ance. Jarschel believes ‘that the first con­tacts with the Vat­i­can were estab­lished dur­ing those months, which were to lead even­tu­al­ly to the set­ting up of Hudal’s escape net­work.’ ”

(Ibid.; pp. 33–34.)

18. “The time was fast approach­ing when it would be need­ed. By ear­ly 1944 when the Allies land­ed in Sici­ly, even Hudal could see that Hitler’s ‘Thou­sand Year Reich’ was doomed. As long as the Nazi Armies were win­ning, he had proud­ly dri­ven around Rome with a ‘Greater Ger­many’ flag on his car; but when the Allies arrived in the Ital­ian cap­i­tal in June of 1944, Hudal ‘was the first to change it—suddenly his flag was Aus­tri­an.’ ”

(Ibid.; p. 34.)

19. ” . . . There were many dra­mat­ic changes in the Vat­i­can as well, one of which may have played a cru­cial role in the devel­op­ment of Hudal’s escape net­work. In August 1944, Car­di­nal Maglione died. Pius XII decid­ed not to appoint a new Sec­re­tary of State, reas­sum­ing per­son­al respon­si­bil­i­ty for for­eign pol­i­cy. From that time, Mon­signors Tar­di­ni and Mon­ti­ni worked direct­ly for the Pope. Ladis­las Fara­go claimed in his con­tro­ver­sial book, After­math, that this deci­sion ‘was Hudal’s entrée to the high­est ech­e­lon of the Holy See.’ Fara­go argues that Hudal had been on the outs with Maglione, rely­ing on infre­quent con­tact with the Pope him­self to influ­ence Vat­i­can pol­i­cy. But now he ‘acquired a friend in the Sec­re­tari­at of State.’ ”

(Idem.)

20. “Maglione’s death sud­den­ly left Gio­van­ni Mon­ti­ni in charge of Pon­tif­i­cal Assis­tance to refugees, open­ing the door for Hudal’s plans. Fara­go claims that it was Mon­ti­ni who allowed Hudal access to Vat­i­can pass­ports and oth­er iden­ti­ty and trav­el doc­u­ments, which he then used to aid his Nazi friends. At the same time Hudal alleged­ly devel­oped good con­tacts with anoth­er impor­tant Vat­i­can bureau under Mon­tini’s con­trol. This was the Pon­tif­i­cal Com­mis­sion for Assis­tance, which was con­cerned with work among refugees. One of its major roles was issu­ing trav­el doc­u­ments to legit­i­mate refugees. Final­ly, Fara­go alleged that Mon­ti­ni gave Hudal access to Car­i­tas Inter­na­tion­al, a Catholic char­i­ty which paid liv­ing and trav­el­ing expens­es to help gen­uine refugees. . . .There is some cir­cum­stan­tial evi­dence in the Amer­i­can diplo­mat­ic records to sup­port the claim that Mon­ti­ni was delib­er­ate­ly aid­ing Hudal’s Nazi-smug­gling. . . .”

(Ibid.; pp. 34–35.)

21. ” . . . In fact, Drag­onovic was wide­ly known among West­ern intel­li­gence oper­a­tives as the ‘Balkan grey emi­nence.’ This was a stand­ing joke among both Amer­i­can and British offi­cers, in whose cir­cles Draganovic moved freely. This was also con­firmed by Sim­cic, who was cer­tain that Draganovic had direct con­tact with British, Amer­i­can and Ital­ian intel­li­gence. The for­mer British offi­cer was also emphat­ic that ‘you can almost talk about inter­lock­ing direc­tor­ships between West­ern intel­li­gence and the Vat­i­can at this peri­od.’ ”

(Ibid.; p. 114.)

22. “It is no coin­ci­dence that Rauf­f’s ‘Mr. Dulles’ lat­er became Direc­tor of the Cen­tral Intel­li­gence Agency, or that James Jesus Angle­ton became head of CIA Counter Intel­li­gence. Through­out Angle­ton’s career he retained exclu­sive con­trol over Amer­i­can intel­li­gence liai­son with the Vat­i­can. What­ev­er the Amer­i­can motive, it is incon­testable that Rauff was released from cus­tody and returned to his flat in Milan.”

(Ibid.; p. 39.)

23. “Accord­ing to the French pub­li­ca­tion Cer­cle Noir, Rauff made con­tact with Arch­bish­op Siri of Genoa, and imme­di­ate­ly went to work for the Vat­i­can in estab­lish­ing a Nazi-smug­gling sys­tem. Apart from his high lev­el Amer­i­can and Vat­i­can con­tacts, Rauf­f’s main con­tri­bu­tion to Hudal’s smug­gling sys­tem may have been finan­cial. The man who once can the mobile gas truck pro­gram now became a mon­ey laun­der­er, with the help of Fred­eri­co Schwendt, Rauf­f’s for­mer SS col­league. Schwendt is con­sid­ered among the great­est coun­ter­feit­ers in his­to­ry, hav­ing forged mil­lions of ban­knotes dur­ing the war as part of an SS oper­a­tion code­named Wendig.”

(Idem.)

24. “The orig­i­nal inten­tion was to under­mine and pos­si­bly destroy the Allied economies, but as the war was draw­ing to a close, Schwendt laun­dered the coun­ter­feit mon­ey through var­i­ous banks for the first Nazi escape net­work. Wiesen­thal claims that Schwendt turned the pro­ceeds over to his old com­rade, Wal­ter Rauff.”

(Idem.)

25. “How­ev­er Jarschel has a slight­ly dif­fer­ent ver­sion. He claims that Hudal con­tact­ed Rauff in July 1945, ask­ing him to come to Rome for a secret meet­ing. This proved impos­si­ble, so Hudal sug­gest­ed that Rauff trav­el instead to Genoa and con­tact the new­ly appoint­ed and strong­ly anti-Com­mu­nist Arch­bish­op Siri, anoth­er key play­er in the Nazi-smug­gling oper­a­tion. Rauff went to Genoa and was received by one of Sir­i’s pri­vate sec­re­taries. Jarschel alleges that he was giv­en a size­able sum of mon­ey and a Red Cross pass­port with a valid visa for Syr­ia. He then returned to Milan and estab­lished the escape net­work.”

(Idem.)

26. “Per­haps the truth is some­where in between: Rauff prob­a­bly used Sir­i’s mon­ey to aug­ment the pro­ceeds from the coun­ter­feit laun­der­ing oper­a­tion. Jarschel and Cer­cle Noir both agree that over the next four years some of the most want­ed Nazi war crim­i­nals passed from Rauff in Milan, to Bish­op Hudal at the Ani­ma in Rome and then on to Arch­bish­op Siri in Genoa. Here they board­ed ships and left for new lives in South Amer­i­ca. . . .”

(Ibid.; pp. 39–40.)

27. One of the most heinous Nazis who escaped with the help of the Vat­i­can was Ante Pavel­ic, head of the bru­tal Croa­t­ian Ustashi gov­ern­ment in World War II. Before flee­ing to Argenti­na (where he became an aide to Juan Per­on), Pavel­ic was actu­al­ly phys­i­cal­ly shel­tered in Castel­gan­dol­fo, the Pope’s sum­mer res­i­dence.

“. . . From a very con­fi­den­tial source, Amer­i­can intel­li­gence had dis­cov­ered in May 1946 that the Poglavnik was liv­ing ‘close to Rome in a build­ing which is under the juris­dic­tion of the Vat­i­can.’ This was soon after Pavel­ic had first arrived in Rome from Aus­tria, and it is now known that the Poglavnik, like Fer­enc Vaj­ta, actu­al­ly took refuge at Castel­gan­dol­fo, where the Pope’s sum­mer res­i­dence is locat­ed. It seems that many Nazis grav­i­tat­ed to Castel­gan­dol­fo, for Pavel­ic was housed with a for­mer Min­is­ter in the Nazi Roman­ian gov­ern­ment. [Ital­ics are Mr. Emory’s.]”

(Ibid.; p. 78.)

28. Next, the pro­gram sets forth doc­u­men­ta­tion of the verac­i­ty of the plain­tiffs’ charges in the afore­men­tioned law­suit against the Vat­i­can Bank. The Vat­i­can “ratlines”—the Church’s Nazi escape networks—were presided over by Bish­op Alois Hudal and Father Draganovic (the “Gold­en Priest”). Draganovic helped to spir­it the Ustashi plun­der out of Yugoslavia as well. In the imme­di­ate after­math of the war, the Ustashi loot was used, in part, to finance a gueril­la war against the Yugosla­vian regime. These recon­struct­ed Ustashis were termed “Krizari”—Crusaders. The Krizari cam­paign was admin­is­tered by British intel­li­gence, which assist­ed the Vat­i­can with the exo­dus of the Ustashi plun­der. Again, the “Pavel­ic” referred to in the fol­low­ing pas­sage was Ante Pavel­ic, the Fuhrer of the Ustacha regime, who became a trust­ed advis­er to Argen­tine dic­ta­tor Juan Per­on after the war.

” . . . With the help of Catholic priests, Pavel­ic had begun to trans­fer large quan­ti­ties of gold and cur­ren­cy to Switzer­land in ear­ly 1944. Some of the trea­sure had been tak­en to Italy by British Lieu­tenant Colonel Jon­son to finance the Krizari forces. Anoth­er por­tion went to Rome with Draganovic and also end­ed up financ­ing the ter­ror­ist net­work.”

(Ibid.; p. 132.)

29. “But over 2,400 kilos of gold and oth­er valu­ables still remained secret­ed in Berne. It was sup­posed to be used to ‘aid refugees of the Catholic reli­gion’, but was real­ly ear­marked for the Ustashi’s clan­des­tine oper­a­tions. Although the Allies had tem­porar­i­ly pre­vent­ed them from gain­ing access to these funds, by ear­ly 1948 the time had come to use the Church to retrieve the loot.”

(Idem.)

30. “In Berne, Roz­man’s Ustashi friends were engaged in whole­sale fraud, using the black mar­ket to con­vert the gold into dol­lars, and lat­er, into Aus­tri­an schillings. ‘Aid to the refugees is account­ed for at the offi­cial rate of exchange for dol­lars,’ the Amer­i­can offi­cers not­ed, adding that ‘mal­prac­tices have been car­ried on (offi­cial­ly, the dol­lar is worth 10 schillings; on the black mar­ket, 100 to 150). Accord­ing to reli­able infor­ma­tion: ‘Roz­man is going to Berne to take care of these finances. The mon­ey is in a Swiss bank, and he plans to have most of it sent through to Italy and from there to the Ustashis in [the] Argen­tine.’ ”

(Ibid.; pp. 132–133.)

31. “A short time lat­er Roz­man duly arrived in Berne, accom­pa­nied by Bish­op Ivan Sar­ic, the ‘hang­man’ of Sara­je­vo. By the end of May 1948, Roz­man had appar­ent­ly car­ried out this mon­ey laun­der­ing oper­a­tion for the Ustashi, for the vis­it­ed the U.S. Con­sulate in Zurich and was giv­en a ‘non-quo­ta immi­gra­tion visa as a min­is­ter of reli­gion.’ He then trav­eled to the Unit­ed States and set­tled in Cleve­land, Ohio. The cir­cle was now almost com­plete. Pavelic’s stolen ‘trea­sure’ had been tracked down through close mon­i­tor­ing of the move­ments and activ­i­ties of the quis­ling Bish­op of Ljubl­jana. . . .”

(Ibid.; p. 133.)

32. “William Gowen and his CIC col­leagues had start­ed to unrav­el Britain’s role in the Krizari’s oper­a­tions dur­ing their hunt for Ante Pavel­ic in 1947. As already dis­cussed, they soon dis­cov­ered that the Vat­i­can was shel­ter­ing Pavel­ic, with the con­nivance of the British Secret Intel­li­gence Ser­vice. In the course of estab­lish­ing this, Gowen also con­firmed sen­sa­tion­al claims made by Fer­enc Vaj­ta. It will be recalled that the Amer­i­can’s Hun­gar­i­an Nazi con­tact had told him that SIS was behind the mil­i­tary and polit­i­cal revival of the Ustashi.”

(Ibid.; p. 122.)

33. “Gowen inves­ti­gat­ed the Krizari’s finances and soon uncov­ered the unsa­vory truth: their mon­ey came part­ly from the ‘trea­sure’ which ‘Pavelic’s hench­men’ had car­ried out of Croa­t­ia. Accord­ing to Gowen, the Ustashi had fled with a large num­ber of truck­loads of this stolen booty. When the British SIS appre­hend­ed Pavel­ic in Aus­tria in may 1945, they also picked up some of his loot. Gowen believed that the fol­low­ing sto­ry of what real­ly hap­pened was ‘clos­est to the truth’: ‘British Lt. Colonel Jon­son was placed in charge of two (2) trucks laden with the sup­posed prop­er­ty of the Catholic Church in the British Zone of Aus­tria. These two (2) trucks, accom­pa­nied by a num­ber of priests and the British offi­cer, then entered Italy and went to an unknown des­ti­na­tion.’ ”

(Ibid.; p. 123.)

34. “Major Stephen Clis­sold con­firmed that two such Ustashi ‘trea­sure trucks’ had indeed reached Aus­tria. Not sur­pris­ing­ly, Clis­sold did not men­tion the British role in remov­ing them to Italy, claim­ing instead that they ‘were deposit­ed in the safe-keep­ing of a monastery,’ but Gowen was cer­tain that the British were now using it to finance ‘the Croat resis­tance move­ment in Yugoslavia. The resis­tance forces . . . go by the name of Krizari (Cru­saders) . . . Radio con­tact is main­tained by means of a field radio oper­at­ed by Vran­cic, a for­mer Pavel­ic min­is­ter locat­ed in the British Zone of Aus­tria. The Ustashia couri­er ser­vice with­in the Aus­tri­an Zones is believed aid­ed by the Roman Catholic Church in Aus­tria. The Car­di­nal of Graz is known to be on close terms with . . . Pro­fes­sor Draganovic, Krunoslav, known Pavel­ic con­tact in Rome.’ ”

(Idem.)

35. “Yet again, West­ern intel­li­gence found that Father Draganovic was at the cen­ter of the Ustashi’s clan­des­tine activ­i­ties. Indeed, he was wide­ly known in West­ern intel­li­gence and émi­gré cir­cles as ‘the gold­en priest’ because he con­trolled a large part of the stolen trea­sure. Although Colonel Jon­son had tak­en away two truck­loads in 1945, this was only a frac­tion of Pavelic’s loot.”

(Idem.)

36. “Four hun­dred kilos of gold, worth mil­lions of dol­lars, and a con­sid­er­able amount of for­eign cur­ren­cy had been secret­ed at Wolfs­berg, where it was under the con­trol of for­mer Ustashi Min­is­ter, Lovro Susic. Draganovic dis­cov­ered this from senior Ustashi offi­cials dur­ing his vis­it to Aus­tria in mid-1945. They were appar­ent­ly deter­mined to main­tain some inde­pen­dence from the British, who they feared would seize the gold, so they asked Draganovic to save it. The priest was only too will­ing to oblige, for he con­tact­ed Susic and with his agree­ment took forty kilos of gold bars to Rome, con­cealed in two pack­ing cas­es. There is no doubt about Draganovic’s close con­nec­tions with the Ustashi hier­ar­chy in this mon­ey laun­der­ing scheme. . . .”

(Ibid.; pp. 123–124.)

37. Anoth­er of the Croa­t­ian war crim­i­nals who ben­e­fit­ed from the Rat­line was Srecko Rover. In the 1990’s, Rover returned to Croa­t­ia to become an advis­er to the “new” Croa­t­ian gov­ern­ment in its atroc­i­ties com­mit­ted against Serbs and Bosn­ian Mus­lims. (For more about the Croa­t­ian Ustashis and their influ­ence on the “new” Croa­t­ian gov­ern­ment, see—among oth­er pro­grams, FTR#48 [10].)

“It is no coin­ci­dence that Pavelic’s lieu­tenant Srecko Rover—whose roles in the bru­tal atroc­i­ties in and around Sara­je­vo dur­ing World War II and in the British intel­li­gence ter­ror­ist net­works of the late 1940’s are doc­u­ment­ed in Chap­ter Six of this book—has giv­en Tudj­man’s gov­ern­ment spe­cial­ist advice on how to con­duct a good mas­sacre. Nor is it a coin­ci­dence that Rover, and his Ustashi com­rades who were smug­gled down the Vat­i­can Rat­lines to Argenti­na, Amer­i­ca, Cana­da, Aus­tralia, and Britain, trained a new gen­er­a­tion of West­ern-edu­cat­ed Croa­t­ian war crim­i­nals who left their adopt­ed coun­tries to slaugh­ter Serbs and Mus­lims in the 1990’s Balka­ns wars.”

(Ibid.; p. xvi.)

38. Next, the pro­gram turned to an invi­ta­tion that John Lof­tus received to attend an event in Argenti­na, sup­pos­ed­ly to help shed light on Nazi war crim­i­nals and their exo­dus to Argenti­na. This occurred in the imme­di­ate after­math of Lof­tus’s role in aid­ing the dis­cov­ery and extra­di­tion of Nazi war crim­i­nal Eric Priebke, the per­pe­tra­tor of the Adrea­tine Caves mas­sacre in Rome dur­ing World War II. Priebke was among the Nazis who ben­e­fit­ted from the Rat­line.

” . . . Sud­den­ly, John Lof­tus, one of the authors of this book, received an invi­ta­tion from the Men­em gov­ern­ment to come to Buenos Aires to address an Inter­na­tion­al Sem­i­nar on anti-Semi­tism. It did not take long to dis­cov­er why: the Argen­tine gov­ern­ment want­ed him to talk about Nazis in Amer­i­ca., to take the sting away from the Nazis in Argenti­na. The con­fer­ence turned out to be a pub­lic rela­tions effort to gloss over the dark side of Juan and Evi­ta Per­on’s role in pro­vid­ing Argen­tine visas to the Vat­i­can to smug­gle Nazis out of Europe, which we doc­u­ment lat­er in this book. Sev­er­al speak­ers min­i­mized the pres­ence of Nazis in Argenti­na, defend­ed the Per­ons, and praised Pres­i­dent Men­em for his coura­geous deci­sion to open Argenti­na’s immi­gra­tion files for inspec­tion.”

(Ibid.; p. xiii.)

39. Note that the Men­em gov­ern­ment con­tin­ued to mask the truth about the extent of Nazi involve­ment with Argenti­na. Note, also, that Priebke con­tin­ued to be shel­tered by pow­er­ful ele­ments, who did not want the truth about the Rat­lines and the com­plic­i­ty of those who par­tic­i­pat­ed to emerge.

” . . . As this book shows, Juan and Evi­ta Per­on had wel­comed some of the worst Nazi mass mur­der­ers of World War II, includ­ing Ante Pavel­ic, the leader of the ‘inde­pen­dent’ state of Croa­t­ia. Pavel­ic and near­ly the entire cab­i­net of his bloody Ustashi gov­ern­ment had emi­grat­ed via the Vat­i­can to Buenos Aires, where Per­on prompt­ly made Pavel­ic one of his senior ‘secu­ri­ty advis­ers.’ Even the care­ful­ly pre­sent­ed facts did move the Men­em gov­ern­ment. Months passed, and it seemed that Priebke would suf­fer lit­tle more than ‘pro­tec­tive’ cus­tody under the benev­o­lent eye of the Argen­tini­ans. Even­tu­al­ly, how­ev­er, they had to hand Priebke over in the wake of an almost unprece­dent­ed inter­na­tion­al cam­paign.”

(Ibid.; pp. xiii-xiv.)

40. “Sev­er­al of our intel­li­gence sources warned us that Priebke was still being pro­tect­ed. He knew too much about the Vat­i­can’s Rat­lines to Argenti­na to ever be per­mit­ted to stand tri­al. Amaz­ing­ly, the Ital­ian mil­i­tary tri­bunal acquit­ted Priebke on a tech­ni­cal­i­ty. The peo­ple of Rome dimmed the lights of the city in protest. The next morn­ing, Priebke was rear­rest­ed. The Supreme Court of Italy ruled that he must stand tri­al in a civ­il court. But to our dis­may, Priebke received only a five-year sen­tence, rough­ly equiv­a­lent to a week in jail for every per­son he had mur­dered in the Adrea­tine caves.”

(Ibid.; p. xiv.)

41. “As we were to dis­cov­er, Priebke was indeed pro­tect­ed by char­i­ta­ble forces. Priebke knew too much about the Vat­i­can’s Rat­lines, and did not even serve his time in a prison, but lived com­fort­ably for many months under ‘house arrest’ in a Catholic monastery. In March 1998, the Ital­ian mil­i­tary tri­bunal again con­sid­ered his case, and this time decid­ed to jail him for life. By this time Priebke had been moved to a hos­pi­tal locat­ed, iron­i­cal­ly enough, in the Jew­ish quar­ter of Rome. As we write in April 1998 it seems unlike­ly that Priebke will serve more than a few sym­bol­ic days of his ‘life sen­tence’ in a prison.”

(Idem.)

42. Next the pro­gram reviewed some of the infor­ma­tion about the Cru­sade For Free­dom and the com­plic­i­ty of high rank­ing GOP offi­cials in aid­ing the relo­ca­tion of Nazis to the Unit­ed States. For more about this, see—among oth­er pro­grams—FTR#465 [11].

43. The pro­gram also reviewed the CIA’s spon­sor­ship of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, the Arab Nazi col­lab­o­ra­tors. The show also reviewed the GOP/Muslim Brotherhood/Bank Al Taqwa con­nec­tion.