Josef Mengele "Dr. Mengele"
FBI - Department of Justice - SS Files
647 pages of FBI/Department of Justice files relating to Josef Mengele, "Dr. Mengele", composed of a 202 page 1992 Department of Justice report and 445 pages of copies of documents and exhibits used in the Department of Justice investigation. The report is the culmination of the DOJ investigation, commenced in 1985, into the whereabouts and postwar activities of this infamous Nazi criminal.
For decades before the time of this report, former SS Hauptsturmfuehrer [Captain] Josef Mengele was the most notorious Nazi criminal thought to be alive. Mengele served during World War II as a "doctor" at the infamous Auschwitz concentration camp in Nazi-occupied Poland, where more than one million prisoners, the overwhelming majority of them Jews, were systematically executed. When prisoners arrived at Auschwitz, Mengele and his "doctor" colleagues selected for slave labor those who appeared medically "fit" (thus consigning them to toil under inhumane and often deadly conditions) or who could be used by the Third Reich in some other way. All other prisoners, the vast majority, were immediately murdered by gassing in specially designed asphyxiation chambers. Mengele was also notorious for performing grotesque pseudo-medical experiments on prisoners, children and adults alike, especially those who were twins.
In 1981, the State Prosecutor in Frankfurt issued a warrant for Josef Mengele's arrest. This document contains a lengthy recitation of Dr. Mengele's crimes. It is perhaps most accurately described as a catalog of horror. Dr. Mengele is accused of murder on a colossal scale. He held in his pointing index finger the power of life and death for the hundreds of thousands of innocents whom he confronted as they stepped from the overcrowded freight trains that brought them to Auschwitz (Oswiecim), Poland, some from the farthest corners of Europe.
Because of his highly visible and significant role in the Hitler regime's homicidal reign of terror, Doctor Mengele effectively became a symbol of the Holocaust; in particular, his name became synonymous with the evil of Auschwitz, the site on which more people were murdered than any other in recorded human history. Understandably, the thought of his remaining a free man was most acutely painful for all Holocaust survivors, especially his victims. If indeed he were alive, as conventional wisdom held at the time, justice demanded that he be held legally accountable for his role in the Third Reich's genocidal policies.
In February 1985, the U.S. Department of Justice investigated allegations that Mengele had been in U.S. custody and might have had a relationship with U.S. government institutions or personnel during the period immediately following the Second World War. Four allegations emerged: (1) that Mengele was a prisoner of war in U.S. custody in 1945 and had been knowingly released; (2) that he had lived openly under his own name in his own home town following the war, with tacit U.S. approval; (3) that he was arrested by U.S. forces in Vienna in 1946 and released; and (4) that he was used by U.S. intelligence agencies which then assisted him in escaping Europe for South America in 1949.
The Department of Justice's Criminal Division's Office of Special Investigations (OSI ) was instructed by the Attorney General to initiate a comprehensive investigation. This investigation had two primary goals: 1) to determine Josef Mengele's whereabouts, activities and affiliations from 1945-1949, and 2) to determine his whereabouts in 1985, so that authorities in Germany or Israel could put him on trial.
Among many topics the report covers are: Allegations against Dr. Mengele, Mengele's immediate postwar movements, Mengele's autobiography as a source, The Idar-Oberstein Question: Mengele a POW?, Attempts to prevent release of war criminals, The Mengele family and the city of Guenzburg, U.S. contact with the family of Mengele, The Gorby question: arrest of Mengele in 1946-1947?, Polish Auschwitz trials, Questioning of Mengele's wife Irene Mengele, Comparisons to the Klaus Barbie case, Mengele's escape from Europe, Mengele's residence in South America, Medical records From Germany, and DNA testing.
Included among the copies of documents in the compilation of exhibits are: Warrant for the arrest of Josef Mengele, Map of Mengele's movements, List of German nationals detained, List of people named Josef Mengele, Documents related to "No Man's Land", Photograph of Schauenstein, Discharge certificate, Discharge directives, Wanted lists, Gorby memorandum, List of Auschwitz war criminals extradited to Poland, Muench wanted report, International Red Cross travel document, Preliminary Forensic Report, June 21, 1985, Translation of Josef Mengele's SS File, Forensic report on SS File, Letter describing Mengele's death, Mengele's school records, Forensic Report, dated November 6, 1986, FBI letter concerning DNA, A chronology, DNA Analysis Report, March 12, 1992, by Professor Alec J.Jeffreys and Dr. Erika Hagelberg, and a 1968 report of Brazilian Police Special Agent Erich Erdstein