Nazi War Criminal Kurt Waldheim served as UN Secretary-General, 1972-1981

Waldheim was chosen twice, in 1971 and 1976, both times with the unanimous backing of the UN Security Council’s five permanent members. Both sides of the Cold War were apparently aware of his history. It is likely that each side believed it was only one which knew and wanted to blackmail him, although this is not the prevalent theory. This is hardly surprising that many UN officials are chosen for their flaws rather than their merits.

Kurt Waldheim’s bio page on the United Nations website conceals his Nazi history. The only reference to his WWII actions is this: “He graduated from the University of Vienna as a Doctor of Jurisprudence in 1944.”

This gives the idea that he studied in Vienna during WWII. He did not. He served as an officer in Nazi units that perpetrated genocide and other war crimes. As an intelligence officer, he was aware of that.

Too high a standard of evidence probably led to Waldheim’s whitewashing, but the available information  supports the conclusion that he not only observed, but also planned and/or commanded the mass murder of unarmed Serbs and the deportation of Jews to extermination camps.

Waldheim fled the territories of Yugoslavia where he committed his most recent atrocities and where the documentation remained to the Western occupation zone in 1945. Following that, he worked in the Austrian government, eventually becoming Foreign Minister in 1968. Waldheim likely used his influence to gain backing from the Yugoslav government. He might have utilized his position as UN General Secretary to avoid criticism from the Israeli government. Later, Kurt Waldheim was found lying about his Nazi service on many occasions.

Waldheim’s involvement in Nazi atrocities has been well publicized since 1986, and the US placed him on the No Entry list even while he was President of Austria.

What we know about him is likely a large underestimate of his crimes.

Tedros Adhanom

Thus, the appointment of mass murderer Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus as Director-General of W.H.O is not an exception. An apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Short Kurt Waldheim Chronology

This CIA document (downloaded copy CIA WALDHEIM KURT VOL.1_0030), dated by 1986 and declassified at some point between 2007 and 2017, shows that Kurt Waldheim did not only know and participated in war crimes but commanded them.

“(A personnel chart listed Waldheim as sole chief of 03 intelligence unit and numbers among unit’s duties “sauberung” (cleansing operations) and “vetnehmung” (interrogations).” (p. 7)

Here, cleansing operations refers to murder of Yugoslavian partisans and civilians.

“Waldheim claimed to have been in Vienna to finish his studies from mid-November 1942 until early April 1943. Waldheim claimed he went on study leave in mid-November 1942 to write a thesis. German military records show he was in Salonika throughout December 1942.” (p. 7)

“Waldheim admits (April 1986) he served with the German army in Yugoslavia and Greece from April 1942 until the end of the war in 1945.” (p. 7)

Maybe, the University of Vienna counted his “field work” for the thesis, excuse my distasteful remark.

Late March 1943, went to Salonika (Gen Lohr) 15 March, deportation of 46,000 Jews of Salonika began (Waldheim claimed to be 6 kilometers out of Salonika) (p. 8)

Waldheim could have taken part in it. He was an intelligence officer at the Army Group level. His boss Gen. Alexander Lohr was tried, convicted, and executed for war crimes in Yugoslavia in 1947.

“… Aegean Islands. These reports came out of Salonika (Group IcAo).” (p. 10)

“28 April 1944 letter (SECRET) went to Waldheim’s unit (Waldheim there or not?) asking the unit to contact the SD to arrange for evacuation of 2,000 Jews remaining on island of Corfu. On 15 July, another message went to the unit describing deportation of Jews on Rhodes and Crete.” (p. 10)

“Evacuation” and “deportation” mean sending to death camps.

“Two documents, one dated 15 July 1944, the other 11 August 1944, discussing in specific terms the deportation of Greek Jews, had been addressed to Waldheim’s intelligence unit.” (p. 11)

“October (?), Waldheim signed a report recording the death of 739 “bandits” in October 1944 and the capture of only 63 weapons. 12 October 1944, signed two intelligence reports pinpointing Stip-Kocane area, Yugoslavia, as “bandit” area (partisans). 1947 Yugoslavia War Crimes Commission report charges that during his group’s retreat to Northern Yugoslavia, he was involved in burning of three villages (named) between Stip and Kocane. (This was Army Group E. One of the two documents be’ars Waldheim’s signature noting that report issued on Warnstorff’s behalf.) Supposedly, infantry company commander Captain Karl-Heinz Egberts-Hilker testified to Yugoslavia that reprisals here were part of Waldheim’s responsibility.…

Waldheim signed report of 11 August 1944 (Nuremberg Document NOKW-935) described a “cleansing operation” by forces in Waldheim’s command, two days after he identified area south of Iraklion, Crete, as one in which partisans were active. Suggested reprisals, too. … 22 September 1944 document reports on instructions issued by the IcAo at Waldheim’s headquarters: “Deportation of Jews: End of July 1944.” According to the document, execution of the command was given to the intelligence section of the SS storm troopers. Waldheim was in Sarajevo in November 1944 (Mayer said he bore responsibility for two atrocities there, according to an execution order given by Waldheim).” (p. 11)

“Klaus Melinschoff, a special missions staff officer with Army Group E accused Waldheim (in the 1948 Yugoslavian war crimes report) of applying reprisal measures, the same as high-ranking German officers.” (p. 12)

“Waldheim acknowledged (date?) he was the designated “03” of the IcAo unit (date?). U.S. War Department study describes this post as “The deputy of the chief intelligence officer responsible for all operational intelligence and control of the intelligence staff.”” (p. 12)

CIA name files

Kurt Waldheim and Josef Mengele were among only six names in the top tier of CIA name files of Nazi criminals, declassified under The Nazi War Crimes Disclosure Act of 1998. His full file is not available online yet.

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