Macabre medical device among trove of suspected Nazi artifacts found in Argentina

Claudine Rigal
Juin 20, 2017

The 75 pieces were found in a hidden room in the home of a collector north of Buenos Aires, and are thought to have originally belonged to high-ranking officials in the Third Reich.

Patricia Bullrich, the Argentine Security Minister, said: "Our first investigations indicate that these are original pieces". "This is a way to commercialise them, showing that they were used by the horror, by the Fuhrer". She added that there were photos of Adolf Hitler with some of the objects in the collection.

Among the disturbing items were toys that Bullrich said would have been used to indoctrinate children, a large statue of the Nazi Eagle above a swastika, a Nazi hourglass and a box of harmonicas.

Police say one of the most-compelling pieces of evidence of the historical importance of the find is a photo negative of Hitler holding a magnifying glass similar to those found in the boxes.

"It is the original magnifying glass that Hitler was using", said Nestor Roncaglia, head of Argentina's federal police. "We are reaching out to global experts to deepen" our investigation.

The investigation by the police that eventually led to the discovery of the hidden room storing the 75 Nazi artifacts began when artworks of a questionable origin showed up at an art gallery in Argentina's capital, Buenos Aires.

Agents with the global police force Interpol began following the collector and with a judicial order raided the house on June 8.

Stored in hidden room discovered in Beccar, Argentina, at the house of a collector, police found behind a large bookshelf and down a passageway a trove of World War II Nazi artifacts. The collector has not been arrested, but a federal judge has reportedly an investigation going on into his actions and the items found in the hidden room.

"There are no precedents for a find like this".

"Pieces are stolen or are imitations, but this is original and we have to get to the bottom of it".

Mr Roncaglia said the cops were now trying to identify how the Nazi artefacts got to Argentina. The leading hypothesis, so far, is that the times were brought into the South American country after World War II by either a high-ranking Nazi or by Nazis, at a time when Argentina was a refuge for Nazi war criminals.

Nazi "Angel of Death" Josef Mengele, known for his cruel and deadly experiments on Jews in the Auschwitz concentration camp, lived in Argentina for a period following the war before drowning off the coast of Brazil in 1979. Holocaust mastermind Adolf Eichmann was abducted by Israeli Mossad agents in Buenos Aires in 1960, sentenced to death in 1961, and subsequently hanged in Israel a year later.

"There are objects to measure heads that was the logic of the Aryan race", she said.

Ariel Cohen Sabban, president of the DAIA, a political umbrella for Argentina's Jewish institutes, called the find "unheard of" in Argentina. In a hidden room in a house near Argentina's capital, police discovered on June 8th the biggest collection of Nazi artifacts in the country's history.

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