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August, 1944: The Cold War Begins in Earnest

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COMMENT: With the New Cold War gath­er­ing momen­tum and Trump’s with­draw­al from the treaty on inter­me­di­ate range nuclear mis­siles point­ing the world toward war, it is worth reflect­ing on the his­to­ry and deep pol­i­tics that brought this about.

Colonel L. Fletch­er Prouty has writ­ten about events in August of 1944 that are indica­tive of the coa­les­cence of the “Chris­t­ian West” con­cept that we dis­cussed in AFA #37 and fur­ther devel­oped in FTR #1009.

We note that it was in August of 1944 that the famous “Red House” meet­ing at which the Bor­mann flight cap­i­tal net­work real­ized under the aus­pices of Aktion Adler­flug was launched. 

JFK: The CIA, Viet­nam, and the Plot to Assas­si­nate John F. Kennedy by Col. [Ret.] L. Fletch­er Prouty; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [HC]; Copy­right 2011 by L. Fletch­er Prouty; ISBN 978–1‑51073–876‑8; pp. 10–11.

How­ev­er, even before the sur­ren­der of Ger­many and Japan, we began to hear the first rum­blings of the Cold War. The Office of Strate­gic Ser­vices, and par­tic­u­lar­ly its agents Frank Wis­ner and Allen W. Dulles in Zurich, nur­tured the idea that the time had come to rejoin select­ed Nazi pow­er cen­ters in order to split the West­ern alliance from the Sovi­et Union. “Rejoin” is the prop­er word in this case. It was the Dulles-affil­i­at­ed New York law firm of Sul­li­van & Cromwell that had refused to close its offices in Nazi Ger­many after the start of WWII in 1939, even while Great Britain and France were locked in a los­ing strug­gle with Hitler’s invad­ing forces. There­fore, the Dulles OSS “intel­li­gence con­tacts” in Nazi Ger­many dur­ing the war were for the most part Ger­man busi­ness asso­ciates with whom he was acquaint­ed.

On August 23, 1944, the Roma­ni­ans accept­ed Sovi­et sur­ren­der terms and in Bucharest the OSS round­ed up Nazi intel­li­gence experts and their volu­mi­nous East­ern Euro­pean intel­li­gence files and con­cealed among a train­load of Amer­i­can POW’s who were being quick­ly evac­u­at­ed from the Balka­ns via Turkey. Once in ‘neu­tral” Turkey, the train con­tin­ued to a planned des­ti­na­tion at a site on the Syr­i­an bor­der, where it was stopped to per­mit the trans­fer of Nazis and POW’s to a fleet of U.S. [Army] Air Force planes for a flight to Cairo.

I was the chief pilot of that flight of some thir­ty air­craft and was stunned by the dis­cov­ery of two things I would nev­er have sus­pect­ed: A num­ber of the Amer­i­cans had had one or both legs ampu­tat­ed at the knee by their Balkan cap­tors, sole­ly for the pur­pose of keep­ing them immo­bile (the plane I flew had air­line seats rather than can­vas “buck­et” seats, and the men on my plane had lost one or two legs in that bar­bar­ic man­ner), and con­cealed among these POW’s were a num­ber of Balkan Nazi intel­li­gence spe­cial­ists who were being tak­en out of the Balka­ns ahead of the Sovi­et armies by the OSS.

As far as I know, this was one of the first vis­i­ble clues to the emer­gence of the “East-West” Cold War struc­ture, even while we and the Rus­sians were still allies and remained part­ners in the great strug­gle against the Ger­mans.

It was this covert fac­tion with­in the OSS, coor­di­nat­ed with a sim­i­lar British intel­li­gence fac­tion, and its poli­cies that encour­aged cho­sen Nazis to con­ceive of the divi­sive “Iron Cur­tain” con­cept to dri­ve a wedge in the alliance with the Sovi­et Union as ear­ly as 1944–to save their own necks, to sal­vage cer­tain pow­er cen­ters and their wealth, and to stir up resent­ment against the Rus­sians, even at the time of their great­est mil­i­tary tri­umph.

I was only a pilot on that flight, and in no way involved in the diplo­mat­ic intri­ca­cies of that era, but I have always won­dered whose deci­sion it had been, back in mid-1944, a year before the end of World War II, to over­ride the present alliances and to ini­ti­ate a split between the West and our wartime part­ner the Sovi­et Union while we were still firm allies. . . . .


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