According to history books, Adolf Hitler shot and killed himself on April 30, 1945 while residing in an underground bunker in Berlin. His remains were subsequently burnt. But this story has long been questioned. Did Hitler truly die in the bunker? Or did he escape to somewhere else, unidentified and unpunished? Was there a Hitler Death Conspiracy?
The Hitler Death Conspiracy?
While most people believe the official version of Hitler’s suicide, others are unconvinced. Perhaps the most diligent and respected researcher in this area is Argentina-based journalist and historian Abel Basti. In 2010, Basti published El exilio de Hitler / Hitler’s Exile: Las pruebas de la fuga del fuhre a a la Argentina, in which he claimed that the official story was a fabrication. In fact, he believes in a Hitler Death Conspiracy.
According to an interview with Deadline-Live, Basti believes that Hitler escaped the Allies and fled across the ocean, ultimately taking up residence in Argentina.
“Hitler escaped via air from Austria to Barcelona. The last stage of his escape was in a submarine, from Vigo, heading straight to the coast of Patagonia. Finally, Hitler and Eva Braun, in a car with a chauffeur and bodyguard—a motorcade of at least three cars—drove to Bariloche (Argentina). He took refuge in a place called San Ramon, about 15 miles east of that town. It is a property of about 250,000 acres with a lake-front view of Lake Nahuel Huapi, which had been German property since the early twentieth century, when it belonged to a German firm by the name of Schamburg-Lippe.”
Evidence Supporting the Hitler Death Conspiracy?
Here is some of the evidence Basti uses to back up his various claims of a Hitler Death Conspiracy.
- Hitler escaped to Spain?: Several eyewitnesses, including a still-living Jesuit priest “whose family members were friends of the Nazi leader,” spotted him in Spain after his supposed death. FBI documents indicate they were looking for Hitler in Spain after the end of World War II. And an “authenticated secret German document…lists Hitler as one of the passengers evacuated by plane from Austria to Barcelona on April 26, 1945.”
- The Secret Submarine?: A British secret services document indicates that a Nazi submarine convoy left Spain around that time. It stopped in the Canary Islands before finally reaching Argentina.
- Life in Argentina?: Hitler’s post-war life appears to be a bit of a mystery. Basti has met numerous South American eyewitnesses who say they had known Hitler. They state that the former Nazi leader shaved his head and mustache and had several meetings with other Nazi officials. Also, FBI documents show that there were claims of Hitler living in Argentina after the war.
All in all, the evidence supporting a Hitler Death Conspiracy is pretty flimsy. And yet, so is the evidence that Hitler died in the bunker. It rests on testimony provided by fellow Nazis who were fanatical devotees of Hitler. As such, its not hard to imagine they might’ve lied to help their former leader. It’s also hard to ignore the fact that major intelligence agencies believed that Hitler might’ve survived the war. The FBI conducted “an extensive 11-year probe into the possibility that Hitler faked his own death with a bogus suicide in 1945.” Soviet officials gave conflicting reports on whether or not they had found Hitler’s remains. Meanwhile, Joseph Stain, Premier of the Soviet Union, maintained a strong belief that Hitler escaped Germany, a fact which he relayed to President Truman in 1945.
As for physical evidence, the Soviet Union has long been in possession of skull fragments taken from the bunker. These have always been considered definitive proof that Hitler committed suicide via gunshot. In 2009, forensic investigators examined these fragments and determined that they came from a woman instead. And just like that, all physical evidence pointing to suicide vaporized into smoke. If there is other physical evidence pointing to suicide (or to his escape), its either lost to time or locked away somewhere (the U.S. government continues to keep many of its Hitler-related files classified, supposedly for National Security purposes – this same obsession with secrecy led to the nearly century long classification of World War I documents showing how to create invisible ink).
Guerrilla Explorer’s Analysis
So, did Hitler fake his death and escape to Argentina? Was there truly a Hitler Death Conspiracy? While it’s impossible to say for sure, it certainly seems reasonable. Lesser Nazi officials successfully fled Germany and took up residence in South America. And the testimony supporting the suicide theory seems questionable at best.
Basti is presently searching for Hitler’s grave in Argentina, hoping to prove his case once and for all. We here at Guerrilla Explorer wish him the best of luck. If Hitler escaped, the world deserves to know the truth about how he got away…and why his escape remained a secret for so long.