Long Island—a suburb of New York City—they live quiet, unassuming lives. They did not know they were under surveillance by Vermeeren and Mulders, who took a napkin one of the descendants had used in a fast-food restaurant and matched it with a sample of Hitler’s DNA they claim they have stored in a safe.

They also extracted DNA from cigarette butts and from stamps that had been licked by one of the survivors.

The type of DNA extracted is from the great-grandchildren of Alois Hitler, the Führer’s father. The admissability of this evidence in a legal proceeding would be moot; it was not obtained during a legal search. However, as a means of testing other evidence in an effort to determine Hitler’s fate, it could be worth a great deal. It is entirely possible that Vermeeren and Mulders are the only people in the world at this moment with a quantity of the Hitler family’s genetic material, material which could be used to make a definitive judgment as to whether or not the body in Surabaya is that of the twentieth century’s most notorious political leader.

Acknowledgments

t is nearly impossible to acknowledge all the people who have influenced the process of writing a book. Writing an article or even a short story or essay one is struck by how many individuals have had some impact on ideas, information, voice, structure, and point of view. How much more so a book, especially non-fiction: something that marshalls information from various sources and tries to put a face on events

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that transpired long ago.

If this were an Oscar acceptance speech, I would be getting the five- second warning already. I would have mentioned God for some reason, as well as family, producers, directors, a great cinematographer, a charming co-star…and extended gratitude to the Academy for making the right decision in the face of so much talented competition. Instead, and since I have unlimited space and no time constraints, I would like to acknowledge the people who in so many ways really helped write this book.

Donald Weiser and Yvonne Paglia deserve pride of place because this is not a book that neatly falls into their list as publishers. An investigative work on the Nazi underground now rubs shoulders with books on spirituality, psychology, Eastern religions, and my own Tantric Temples. I may have taken some chances in hunting Nazi networks in Latin America, Europe and Asia, but they took a chance in deciding to publish the results of my work. History will show who made the greater gamble!

Maya Gabrieli, a friend of long acquaintance, lent her support in so many ways to this and other works and while she is reluctant to take credit she deserves at least this mention. It is due to Maya that I was able to make presentations before various groups in South Florida that were interested in the survival of the Nazi underground and the political decisions that enabled the escape of war criminals for decades. This helped me organize my information and formulate my approach. For this, and so much else besides, thank you.

John Loftus was gracious with his time and information. A well-known expert in the field of US government collusion in the cover-up of the Ratline, he was able to guide my investigation into areas I had not considered previously.

Nick Bellantoni, the State Archaeologist of Connecticut, was equally gracious. He had gone to Moscow to examine the putative Hitler skull and

who had come back with fragments to be tested, thus proving that the skull in question did not belong to the Fuhrer (the story that is told in these pages). As an archaeologist, Dr Nick gets involved in the strangest cases, including the famous “vampire” graves in eastern Connecticut, but is always a calm and rational voice in the midst of the hysteria. While he believes that Hitler did, indeed, die in the bunker his investigation of the Hitler skull was a critical factor in my decision to take the Indonesia story seriously.

Uki Goñi was kind enough to respond to emails concerning the International Red Cross passports, which was important to my understanding of the documents used by Pöch when he entered Indonesia. Uki is probably the best-known researcher in the field of the Nazi networks in Argentina, working from the Argentine side. His contribution to the knowledge we have of how the ODESSA organizations functioned is invaluable to all of us who work in that area.

Heather Pringle was a great help in the writing of this book as she and her team provided some important documentation concerning the German Archaeological Institute. Her book on the SS-Ahnenerbe is the definitive text in English on this bizarre organization. Her kindness and willingness to help in this endeavor were deeply gratifying.

Clemes Brünenberg of the Deutsches Archäological Institut was helpful in answering email inquiries about the current state of research into the Institute’s war time activities.

Marc Frings of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in Jakarta, Indonesia was a tremendous help in enabling me to prove that Pöch could not have met Adenauer in Bali as was claimed by his Indonesian widow.

Joseph Farrell toils in the same vineyards. His inexhaustible energy when it comes to writing and thinking about the effect the Nazi underground has had on modern politics and science is astonishing. I am in debt to his published work on Nazi scientific experiments and projects which by now has become an imposing, and heavily-documented, ouevre.

Journalist Tom Beyerlein helped in my research on the background of Ohio murderer Frank Spivak. It is one of the strangest elements of the Indonesian story, and one that has yet to be understood.

Annie Azzaritti was supportive through the entire arc of the project, from the discovery that there were strange Germans in Indonesia who might have been Nazis to the idea that one of them might have been Hitler. We

have collaborated on a number of television documentary projects, and she has been gracious enough to introduce me to many of her associates and colleagues in Los Angeles with whom we have been brainstorming concepts on how to treat this story in the best possible way. A good friend and a helpful colleague, Annie has never wavered in her belief that this would make a good documentary some day!

James Wasserman. What can I say? I have known Jim for decades and his aesthetic sense as well as his grasp of historical realities contributed to the completion of the artifact that is now in your hands. The revelation that the US government—as well as the governments of many other nations— actively or passively collaborated in the escape of war criminals and in the establishment of their underground networks is not an easy one to stomach, let alone digest. Throw in the Catholic Church and the Red Cross, and one’s belief in the inherent goodness of the human race is sorely tested! But Jim has never lost his moral compass, even in such heavy electromagnetic storms.

It is also necessary at this point to mention my Indonesian partners in this endeavor. Indonesia is not an easy country to move around in, or to understand. It is a complex matrix of cultural relationships and influences that involves language, religion, politics, history, and mysticism. An Indonesian would probably not compartmentalize her life the way I have just done, and this is the strength of the culture.

That said, the one person who helped me the most on this project desires not to be identified. I was fortunate enough to have enjoyed the partnership of various individuals associated with the Universitas Gadjah Mada in Yogyakarta, but they are in no way responsible for the conclusions I have drawn or for the way I have described Indonesian history in these pages.

In addition, all attempts to contact the authors and publishers of the two original Indonesian-language texts on this subject were met with silence. Much of their work had to be independently verified, and this is where my story began as I deconstructed the events described in their books. There were errors in their work, errors of fact mixed with errors of understanding European history and the war, and these I believe I have addressed and answered. In the end, however, the story of Georg Anton Pöch is a remarkable one—whoever he was, and whatever he was up to in Indonesia

—and it is to those Indonesian authors that I am grateful for sending me off on this wild ride.

It is customary at some point to include thanks to more intimate members of one’s immediate circle: spouse, children, siblings, parents, brothers-in-law, family friends, pets, imaginary playmates, stuffed animals, spirit guides, etc. The nature of this work, however, and the possible reception it may receive in certain quarters, makes me hesitate to unburden myself of familial references for their safety as well as my own. As someone who has received threats in the past, it seems that discretion is the better part of advertisement, and for now that is how I will leave it. However, you know who you are, and you know the contributions you have made, and you know how grateful I have always been.

Thank you!

Peter Levenda

2012, The Year of Living Dangerously

Bibliography

he primary source material supporting the contentions made in this book come from declassified American, British and Soviet files, most of which only came to light in the last ten years. The Soviet files on Hitler’s death had only been published in 2005, fully sixty years after the end of the war, and American intelligence files from

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World War Two are in the process of being declassified. Those that have already been released still, in some cases, contain portions that have been redacted.

Aside from the FBI, OSS, MI6 and CIA files that have been cited in the text, secondary sources include the following. It should be noted that some of the research done on the Nazi underground outside of Europe was published as early as 1939; there was thus an abundance of evidence to support the contention that the Nazis had escape routes in place at the time the war started, using their existing intelligence networks in North America, Latin America and Europe. There was a strong Nazi presence in Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Colombia and elsewhere in Latin America since the 1930s and those files—when they exist—also are being declassified and revealed, albeit in piecemeal fashion.

There are two excellent online sources for declassified government files, and they are Paperless Archives (http://www.paperlessarchives.com) and The Black Vault (http://www.blackvault.com). The interested reader will find many thousands of scanned files on these sites. Paperless Archives is a great source for World War Two-era files, and The Black Vault specializes in Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) declassifications. Both come highly recommended. One can, of course, download some of these files from the FBI website as well as several other US government sites, but the value in Paperless Archives and the Black Vault rests in their organization of the files into specific categories that make the investigator’s life easier. Also, in the case of Paperless Archives, one is able to purchase DVD-ROMs with the entire file sets which means less on-line browsing and downloading.

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Hutton, J. Bernard, Hess: The Man and His Mission, New York: Macmillan, 1971 Infield, Glenn B., Secrets of the SS, New York: Jove Books, 1990

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