An enticing chronicle of the 43-year-long search for Nazi war criminals, by Ashman, author of Diplomatic Crimes, and Wagman,...


THE NAZI HUNTERS: Behind the Worldwide Search for Nazi War Criminals

An enticing chronicle of the 43-year-long search for Nazi war criminals, by Ashman, author of Diplomatic Crimes, and Wagman, Washington columnist and author of Hubert Humphrey: The Man and His Dream and Lord's Justice: The Story of the Dalkon Shield. The authors reveal that hundreds--possibly thousands--of Nazi war criminals remain hidden in the US, Great Britain, Canada, Australia, Spain, and South America, often receiving protection from their host nations from the snares of the Nazi-hunters. Ashman, in his capacity as a London-based journalist, played a prominent role in the exposure of Kurt Waldheim's shady past, and he and Wagman bring that same investigative vigor and accuracy to this exposÉ. The authors find faint-hearted US support for ongoing investigations. For instance, the GAO investigated whether there was a conspiracy afoot to protect Nazis in the US in the 1960's and 1970's, and found that the Immigration and Naturalization Service was very spotty in its attention to red flags put out on some 97 possible Nazis residing here. Similiar lack of dispatch was found in Canada, where Nazi hunter Sol Littman called the commission established there ""inept, amateurish, hasty, and incomplete."" Often Nazi hunters in Canada have been stymied by opposition at the very top--Pierre Trudeau was totally opposed to tracking down war criminals. One long chapter explores the details of Waldheim's WW II career in Germany, Greece, and Yugoslavia, revealing the current Austrian Premier to have been one of the most trusted of Nazi intelligence men. The authors state that both Russia and the US were aware of Waldheim's past from the earliest days, but preferred to use that knowledge to gain political favors. ""By the time he became Secretary-General of the United Nations, Waldheim may well have been in the position of a judge who is offered a bribe by all sides and must dance down the middle in making his decisions."" A name, naming exposÉ that should garner media attention in an age when names like Klaus Barbie and Ivan Demjanjuk still command headlines.

Pub Date: Nov. 14, 1988


Page Count: -

Publisher: Pharos

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 1988