Archaeologists explore possible Nazi hideout deep in remote Argentine jungle: report
Archaeologists in Argentina believe a collection of ruins found deep in a remote jungle region may be the remains of a secret hideout built by German Nazis to flee to after World War II, media reports say.
Researchers from the University of Buenos Aires (UBA), together with archaeologists from the Museum Andrés Guacurarí, stumbled upon ruins of a site that is believed to have been erected to house high-ranking former Nazi officials.
The team is studying the buildings laying in relatively inaccessible part of the Teyú Cuaré Park, southeast of Misiones, on the border with Paraguay.
The cluster consists of three stone structures, now covered by thick vines:
Living quarters, a warehouse and a third structure that apparently served as a half-hidden lookout.
The place is believed to be strategically sought by whomever built it, as it has a panoramic view and walls that are three feet thick. It also has an easy escape route to neighboring Paraguay, in the case that someone might have to quickly flee the country.
The researchers found several objects that indicate that the constructions were carried out in the first half of the 1940s. Among the most significant findings are German coins from between 1938 and 1944 and porcelain from about the same period.
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“Apparently, halfway through the second world war, the Nazis had a secret project to build shelters for top leaders in the event of defeat – inaccessible sites in the middle of deserts, in the mountains, on a cliff or in the middle of the jungle like this,” the archaeologists’ team leader, Daniel Schavelzon, said.
In the end, though, the hideout was never needed. Thousands of Nazis, and Croatian and Italian fascists, arrived in Argentina with the blessing of president Juan Perón, who led the nation from 1946 to 1955 and again briefly in the 1970s, according to the Nazi-hunting Simon Wiesenthal Center in California.
In 1960 Adolf Eichmann, a key organiser of the Holocaust, was captured in Buenos Aires by an Israeli commando team and taken for trial in Israel, where he was executed. Among other senior Nazis who sought refuge in Argentina were Joseph Mengele, Martin Bormann, Walter Kutschmann, Josef Schwammberger, Eduard Roschmann, Wilfred Von Oven and Alois Brunner.