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Massive, hidden trove of Nazi artifacts found in Argentina

Ancient History

Massive, hidden trove of Nazi artifacts found in Argentina

According to reports, over 75 artifacts have been discovered including swastika-adorned handcrafted boxes, a huge ceremonial dagger, a statue of the Nazi Eagle above a giant swastika.

Members of Argentina’s federal police displayed a Nazi statue at the Interpol headquarters in Buenos Aires. Credit Natacha Pisarenko/Associated Press

After a series of raids in the province of Buenos Aires, the Argentine police found several archaeological objects of Chinese and Egyptian origin, protected by national law.

However, in addition to these objects, police found a warehouse, housed in an antique shop, full of artifacts related to the symbology of the Nazi regime, including a bust of the National Socialist leader Adolf Hitler. It all happened as a result of investigations that had begun in October 2016, when detectives discovered several artifacts for sale, protected by the Archaeological and Paleontological Heritage Protection Act.

According to reports, over 75 artifacts have been discovered including swastika-adorned handcrafted boxes, a huge ceremonial dagger, a statue of the Nazi Eagle above a giant swastika.

“Our first investigations indicate that these are original pieces,” Argentine Security Minister Patricia Bullrich told The Associated Press on Monday, saying that some pieces were accompanied by old photographs. “This is a way to commercialize them, showing that they were used by the horror, by the Fuhrer. There are photos of him with the objects.”

A bust of Hitler was among the Nazi artifacts. Credit David Fernandez/European Pressphoto Agency

Among the objects, there are pieces registered in the “Red List of Chinese Cultural Objects”, issued by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and paleontological objects such as mummified animals, amber or pieces of Glyptodon shell.

As for the objects corresponding to the Nazi symbology and ideology, the national authorities indicated that they will be immediately seized to be transferred to the Holocaust Museum as soon as the judicial expertise is completed.

“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,” said Nestor Roncaglia, head of Argentina’s federal police.

Among the objects, researchers found a magnifying glass that, which according to an official could have belonged to the very Adolf Hitler. They also found a knife, a silver eagle and a craniometer, a tool used by doctors to take measurements of the skull.

According to reports, more than 75 artifacts were discovered in Argentina. Credit David Fernandez/European Pressphoto Agency

“This is a way to commercialize them, showing that they were used by the horror, by the Fuhrer,” Argentine security minister Patricia Bullrich told reporters earlier this week.

The discovery of the artifacts in Argentina does not come as a huge surprise since Latin Maerica was one of the most sought after destinations for fleeing fascists. In the 1940’s, Nazi smuggling was a state-sponsored and institutionalized process, supported by the former president Peron. During that time, the Nazi, collaborators, scientists and former SS officers were welcomed by the Latin American country.

The artifacts were smuggled into Argentina by fugitive fascists, authorities believe. Credit Natacha Pisarenko/Associated Press

Apparently, those who did take up on the offer and escaped to Argentina brought some of their favorite artifacts with them, as countless objects have been discovered all over the country.

“There are Nazi objects used by kids, but with the party’s propaganda,” said Marcelo El Haibe, the federal police commissioner for the protection of cultural heritage. He added, “There were jigsaw puzzles and little wood pieces to build houses, but they always featured party-related images and symbols.”

2 Comments
  • Fuzzy Peril Bunny

    Interesting article!

  • rickd12

    Oi!! Those are mine……erm, I mean…..interesting article. Yeah……

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