RESEARCHERS have long pointed out,
Simon Wiesenthal's reputation as a
so-called Nazi-hunter has been totally
undeserved - a classic example of
myth-conception. A case in
notorious Auschwitz physician Josef
Mengele had already been dead
more than five (5) years, after dying by
drowing on February 7, 1979, in the
Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Brazil,
where he had been living in fretful
poverty and obscurity since 1962, when on
February 24, 1984, the famed Nazi-hunter
Wiesenthal sent a letter to the New
Wiesenthal's letter was published on March
13 under the headline
NAZIS' FRIEND IN POSTWAR ROME."
three paragraphs of this ten-paragraph
missive referred to the old Nazi-hunter's
relentless pursuit of the elusive Dr.
Mengele: Wiesenthal alleged that his South
American agents had managed to track down
Dr. Mengele in Philadelphia, a Mennonite
village in Paraguay [sic]. In
fact, he was very specific about the date
when they had managed to locate Dr.
Mengele: January 5, 1983.
"A police agent did
indeed accompany my colleagues to
Philadelphia, prepared to arrest Mengele,
but unfortunately they arrived five days
too late - Mengele had left on Dec. 31,
also interesting about this particular
letter is the credit Wiesenthal gave to
former UN Secretary-General Kurt
Waldheim for his efforts in helping to
capture the old Nazi fugitive. He
"With reference to
the matter of Dr. Joseph Mengele, I might
add that in 1979 I managed, with the help
of then U.N. Secretary General Kurt
Waldheim as well as a number of U.S.
Senators, to persuade the Paraguayan
Government to revoke Dr. Mengele's
[Paraguayan?!] citizenship and to
issue an arrest order."
say, two years following the publication
of this letter in the New York Times,
Kurt Waldheim would himself be the
subject of inquiries and scandal born of
hoary, grisly allegations that he, too,
might well have had an involvement in Nazi
war crimes and atrocities in the Balkan
campaign during the Second World
small world, eh?