Declassified Papers Show U.S. Recruited Ex-Nazis





After World War II, American counterintelligence recruited former Gestapo officers, SS veterans and Nazi collaborators to an even greater extent than had been previously disclosed and helped many of them avoid prosecution or looked the other way when they escaped, according to thousands of newly declassified documents.

With the Soviet Union muscling in on Eastern Europe, “settling scores with Germans or German collaborators seemed less pressing; in some cases, it even appeared counterproductive,” said a government report published Friday by the National Archives.

“When the Klaus Barbie story broke, about his escaping with American help to Bolivia, we thought there weren’t any more stories like that, that Barbie was an exception,” said Norman J. W. Goda, a University of Florida professor and co-author of the report with Professor Richard Breitman of American University. “What we found in the record is that there were a fair number, and that it seems more systematic.”...

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