With the possible exceptions of Hitler and Himmler, no man has been so vilified in recent years as the personification of Nazi evil as Dr. Josef Mengele. The Mengele legend was the basis for two novels that Hollywood turned into popular movies: William Goldman’s The Marathon Man and Ira Levin’s The Boys From Brazil. In the latter film, Gregory Peck played a relentlessly malevolent Dr. Mengele who cloned dozens of little Hitlers as part of a diabolical Latin American Nazi conspiracy.
In countless newspapers and magazine articles, Mengele has been routinely accused of sending 400,000 people to their deaths in gas chambers while serving as the chief physician at Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1943 and 1944. The man dubbed the “Angel of Death” supposedly conducted gruesome “experiments” on selected Jewish victims and habitually delighted in sadistic atrocities. For example, according to U.S. News and World Report (June 24, 1985) he enjoyed “giving candy to children he tossed alive into the ovens while he hummed Mozart and Wagner.” The Washington Post (March 8, 1985) reported that Mengele “routinely tossed babies into ovens alive” and “ordered pregnant women onto their backs, then stomped them until they aborted.”
The media campaign reached a climax in June 1985 when the Mengele name was repeated daily on newspaper front pages and television network evening news broadcasts. Mengele’s face stared from the cover of the gossipy mass circulation People weekly. A hunt that had been going on for years finally came to an end when an international team of forensic scientists positively identified the mortal remains exhumed from a Brazilian grave as those of Dr. Josef Mengele. Testimony from relatives and former friends of the German physician and a large collection of documentary material further established that Mengele had died in a drowning accident in February 1979.
While no sane person would excuse or whitewash atrocities, no matter who commits them, a basic regard for truth and decency compels another, more thoughtful look at the Mengele legend. How much truth is there to the fantastic accusations?
Full article: https://www.ihr.org/jhr/v06/v06p377_Weber.html
Mark Weber Archive
Dr. Josef Mengele
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