19 January 1983

Nazi war criminal Klaus Barbie is arrested in Bolivia.

Klaus Barbie

Klaus Barbie
Klaus Barbie.jpg
Born
Nikolaus Barbie

(1913-10-25)25 October 1913
Died25 September 1991(1991-09-25) (aged 77)
NationalityGerman
Other names"Butcher of Lyon"
Political partyNSDAP (1937–1945)
Criminal chargeCrimes against humanity
PenaltyLife imprisonment
SS career
Allegiance Germany
Service/branchSchutzstaffel Abzeichen.svg Gestapo
Years of service1935–1945
RankHauptsturmführer
UnitSicherheitsdienst (SD)

Nikolaus Barbie (25 October 1913 – 25 September 1991) was an SS and Gestapo functionary during the Nazi era. He was known as the "Butcher of Lyon" for having personally tortured prisoners of the Gestapo - primarily Jews and members of La Résistance - while stationed in Lyon under the collaborationist Vichy regime. After the war, United States intelligence services employed him for his anti-Marxist efforts and also aided his escape to Bolivia.[2]

The West German Intelligence Service later recruited him. Barbie is suspected of having had a hand in the Bolivian coup d'état orchestrated by Luis García Meza in 1980. After the fall of the dictatorship, Barbie no longer had the protection of the government in La Paz and in 1983 was extradited to France, where he was convicted of crimes against humanity. He died of cancer in prison on 25 September 1991.

Early life and education

Nikolaus "Klaus" Barbie was born on 25 October 1913 in Godesberg, later renamed Bad Godesberg, which is today part of Bonn. The Barbie family came from Merzig, in the Saar near the French border. It is likely that his patrilineal ancestors were French Roman Catholics named Barbier who left France at the time of the French Revolution. In 1914, his father, also named Nikolaus, was conscripted to fight in the First World War. He returned an angry, bitter man. He was wounded in the neck at Verdun and captured by the French, whom he hated, and he never recovered his health. He became an alcoholic who abused his children. Until 1923, when he was 10, Klaus Barbie attended the local school where his father taught. Afterwards, he attended a boarding school in Trier, and was relieved to be away from his abusive father. In 1925, the entire Barbie family moved to Trier.[3]

In June 1933, Barbie's younger brother, Kurt, died at the age of 18 of chronic illness. Later that year, their father died. The death of his father derailed plans for the 20-year-old Barbie to study theology, or otherwise become an academic, as his peers had expected. While unemployed, Barbie was conscripted into the Nazi labour service, the Reichsarbeitsdienst. On 26 September 1935, aged 22, he joined the SS (member 272,284), and began working in the Sicherheitsdienst (SD), the SS security service, which acted as the intelligence-gathering arm of the Nazi Party. On 1 May 1937, he became member 4,583,085 of the Nazi Party.

Second World War

After the German conquest and occupation of the Netherlands, Barbie was assigned to Amsterdam. He had been pre-assigned to Adolf Eichmann's Amt (Department) IV/B-4. This department was responsible for identification, roundup and deportation of Dutch Jews and Freemasons. On 11 October 1940 Barbie arrested Hermannus Van Tongeren, Grand Master of the Grand Orient of the Netherlands. In March 1941, Tongeren was transported to Sachsenhausen concentration camp where, in freezing conditions, he died two weeks later. On 1 April, Barbie summoned Tongeren's daughter, Charlotte, to SD headquarters and informed her that her father had died of an infection in both ears and had been cremated.[4]

In 1942 he was sent to Dijon, France, in the Occupied Zone. In November of the same year, at the age of 29, he was assigned to Lyon as the head of the local Gestapo. He established his headquarters at the Hôtel Terminus in Lyon, where he personally tortured adult and child prisoners.[2][5][6] He became known as the "Butcher of Lyon".[7] The daughter of a French Resistance leader based in Lyon said her father was beaten and skinned alive, and that his head was immersed in a bucket of ammonia; he died shortly afterwards.[5]

Historians estimate that Barbie was directly responsible for the deaths of up to 14,000 people,[8][9] personally participating in roundups such as the Rue Sainte-Catherine Roundup which saw 84 people arrested in a single day. He arrested Jean Moulin, a high-ranking member of the French Resistance and his most prominent captive. In 1943, he was awarded the Iron Cross (First Class) by Adolf Hitler for his campaign against the French Resistance and the capture of Moulin.[10]

In April 1944, Barbie ordered the deportation to Auschwitz of a group of 44 Jewish children from an orphanage at Izieu.[11] He then rejoined the SiPo-SD of Lyon in its retreat to Bruyères, where he led an anti-partisan attack in Rehaupal in September 1944.[12]

U.S. intelligence and Bolivia

In 1947, Barbie was recruited as an agent for the 66th Detachment of the U.S. Army Counterintelligence Corps (CIC).[13] The U.S. used Barbie and other Nazi Party members to further anti-communist efforts in Europe. Specifically, they were interested in British interrogation techniques which Barbie had experienced firsthand, and the identities of SS officers the British were using for their own ends. Later, the CIC housed him in a hotel in Memmingen, and he reported on French intelligence activities in the French zone of occupied Germany because they suspected that the French had been infiltrated by communists.[14]

The French discovered that Barbie was in U.S. hands, and having sentenced him to death in absentia for war crimes, made a plea to John J. McCloy, U.S. High Commissioner for Germany, to hand him over for execution, but McCloy allegedly refused.[14] Instead, the CIC helped him flee to Bolivia assisted by "ratlines" organized by U.S. intelligence services,[15] and by Croatian Roman Catholic clergy, including Krunoslav Draganović. The CIC asserted that Barbie knew too much about the network of German spies the CIC had planted in various European communist organizations, and were suspicious of communist influence within the French government, but their protection of Barbie may have been as much to avoid the embarrassment of having recruited him in the first place.[13] Other authors have suggested that the anticommunist element of Italian fascism and the protection of the Vatican allowed Klaus Barbie and other Nazis to flee to Bolivia.[16]

In 1965, Barbie was recruited by the West German foreign intelligence agency Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND), under the codename "Adler" (Eagle) and the registration number V-43118. His initial monthly salary of 500 Deutsche Mark was transferred in May 1966 to an account of the Chartered Bank of London in San Francisco. During his time with the BND, Barbie made at least 35 reports to the BND headquarters in Pullach.[17]

Barbie emigrated to Bolivia,[when?] where he lived well for 30 years in Cochabamba, under the alias Klaus Altmann. It was easier and less embarrassing for him to find employment there than in Europe, and he enjoyed excellent relations with high-ranking Bolivian officials, including Bolivian dictators Hugo Banzer and Luis García Meza Tejada. "Altmann" was known for his German nationalist and anti-communist stances.[18] While engaged in arms-trade operations in Bolivia, he was appointed to the rank of lieutenant colonel within the Bolivian Armed Forces.[19]

Barbie collaborated with General Barriento's regime, including teaching the general's private paramilitaries named "Furmont" how torture can best be used. The regime's political repression against leftist groups was helped by Barbie's knowledge about intelligence work, torture and interrogations. In 1972 under General Banzer (with whom Barbie collaborated even more openly), he assisted in illegal arrests, interrogations and murders of opposition and progressive groups. Journalists and activists who wrote or spoke about the regime's crimes against human rights were arrested and many fell victim to so-called "disappearances", the state's secret murders and abductions of leftists. Barbie actively participated in the regime's oppression of opponents.[20][21][22][23]

Barbie was strongly linked to the neo-Nazi paramilitary , who was his personally hired bodyguard and the two participated in criminal actions and businesses together. De Castro had connections with powerful drugbarons and the illegal drug trade and, together with Barbie (under the name Altmann) and an Austrian company, sold weapons to the drug cartels, and when De Castro was arrested he admitted in interviews that he had earlier worked for druglords in the country. Other sources say Barbie most likely also had connections with these organizations.[24] De Castro continued to correspond with Barbie when Barbie was later under arrest.[25][20][21][22][23][24]> Their connections did also provide intelligence information to US authorities at the US Embassy. A group called "The Fiancées of Death", which included German Nazis and Fascists, had links to some of Barbie's actions in Bolivia. Barbie earlier also carried out a large arms purchase of tanks from Austria to the Bolivian army. These were then used in a coup d'etat.[20][21][22][24]

People who met Barbie during his time in Bolivia has told that he was a firm and fanatic believer in the Nazi ideology and an anti-Semite. Barbie and De Castro reportedly talked about the cases and searches for Josef Mengele and Eichmann, whom Barbie supported and wanted to assist in remaining on the run.[20][21][22][23][24]

Extradition, trial, and death

Barbie's Bolivian secret police ID card

Barbie was identified as being in Peru in 1971 by the Klarsfelds (Nazi hunters from France) who came across a secret document that revealed his alias. On 19 January 1972, this information was published in the French newspaper L'Aurore, along with a photograph of Altmann which the Klarsfelds obtained from a German expatriate living in Lima, Peru. Despite global outcry, Barbie was able to return to Bolivia where the government refused to extradite him, stating that France and Bolivia did not have an extradition treaty and that the statute of limitations on his crimes had expired.[26] Barbie's close fascist friends knew who he was, but to the public Barbie denied being none other than his innocent alter-ego "Altmann" and in a videotaped interview which he allowed, he continued to lie about never having been in Lyon, never knowing Moulin or having been in the Gestapo. However in the 1970’s, the community of refugee Jews who had survived or escaped the war, openly discussed the fact that Barbie was the war criminal from Lyon now living on the Calle Landaeta in La Paz and frequenting the Cafe de La Paz daily. It was no secret.

Journalist and reporter and a female journalist for The New York Times said that while they were outside Barbie's house in Bolivia in 1981, wanting to speak to him for an article, they saw Barbie in a window while they were taking photos at the place, and shortly thereafter they were taken away by twelve armed paramilitary men who had quickly arrived in a van and asked what they were doing there.

The testimony of Italian insurgent Stefano Delle Chiaie before the Italian Parliamentary Commission on Terrorism suggests that Barbie took part in the "cocaine coup" of Luis García Meza Tejada, when the regime forced its way to power in Bolivia in 1980.[27] In 1983, the newly elected democratic government of Hernán Siles Zuazo arrested Barbie in La Paz on the pretext of owing the government 10,000 dollars for goods he was supposed to have shipped but did not, and a few days later, the government delivered him to France to stand trial.[28]

In 1984, Barbie was indicted for crimes committed as Gestapo chief in Lyon between 1942 and 1944, chief among which was the Rue Sainte-Catherine Roundup. The jury trial started on 11 May 1987 in Lyon before the Rhône Cour d'Assises. Unusually, the court allowed the trial to be filmed because of its historical value. A special courtroom was constructed with seating for an audience of about 700.[29] The head prosecutor was Pierre Truche.

At the trial, Barbie's defense was funded by Swiss financier François Genoud and undertaken by attorney Jacques Vergès. He was tried on 41 separate counts of crimes against humanity, based on the depositions of 730 Jews and French Resistance survivors who described how he tortured and murdered prisoners.[30] The father of French Minister for Justice Robert Badinter had died in Sobibor after being deported from Lyon during Barbie's tenure.[31]

Barbie gave his name as Klaus Altmann, the name that he used while in Bolivia. He claimed that his extradition was technically illegal and asked to be excused from the trial and returned to his cell at Prison Saint-Paul. This was granted. He was brought back to court on 26 May 1987 to face some of his accusers, about whose testimony he had "nothing to say".[32]

Barbie's defense attorney, Vergès, had a reputation for attacking the French political system, particularly in the historic French colonial empire. His strategy was to use the trial to talk about war crimes committed by France since 1945. He got the prosecution to drop some of the charges against Barbie due to French legislation that had protected French citizens accused of the same crimes under the Vichy regime and in French Algeria. Vergès tried to argue that Barbie's actions were no worse than the supposedly ordinary actions of colonialists worldwide, and that his trial was tantamount to selective prosecution. During his trial, Barbie said "When I stand before the throne of God, I shall be judged innocent."[33]

The court rejected the defense's argument. On 4 July 1987, Barbie was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment. He died in prison in Lyon four years later of leukemia and spine and prostate cancer at the age of 77.[34]

Personal life

In April 1939, Barbie became engaged to Regina Margaretta Willms, the 23-year-old daughter of a postal clerk; they had two children, a son named Klaus-Georg Altmann and a daughter named Ute Messner.[3] In 1983, Françoise Croizier, Klaus Barbie's French daughter-in-law, said in an interview the CIA kidnapped Klaus-Georg in 1946 to make sure his father carried out intelligence missions for the agency. Croizier met Klaus-Georg while both were students in Paris; they married in 1968, had three children and lived in Europe and Bolivia using the surname Altmann. Croizier said when she married she did not know who her father-in-law was, but that she could guess the reasons for a German to settle in South America after the war. Klaus-Georg died in a hang-gliding accident in 1981.[35]

Klaus Barbie remained unto the end a politically fanatic and systematic Nazi, who defended Hitler's politics and racial theories, and Fascism, in any situation they were questioned or criticized. Historians have noted that Barbie never had to be part of anything doing with the army or police in Bolivia, but that he actively chose such positions as part of his constant and active support for extreme right wing and Nazi ideology and would fight for that cause in all ways he deemed "effective".

See also

References

  1. ^ "Klaus Barbie The Butcher of Lyon". Holocaust Research Project. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  2. ^ a b Bönisch, Georg; Wiegrefe, Klaus (20 January 2011). "From Nazi to criminal to post-war spy: German intelligence hired Klaus Barbie as agent". Der Spiegel.
  3. ^ a b Profile, jewishvirtuallibrary.org; accessed 29 September 2015.
  4. ^ The Red Triangle. 2011. Pp.95-97. ISBN 978-0-85318-332-7
  5. ^ a b Hôtel Terminus (Motion picture). 1988.
  6. ^ "Klaus Barbie: women testify of torture at his hands", upenn.edu; 23 March 1987.
  7. ^ "Ich bin gekommen, um zu töten". Der Spiegel. 2 July 2007. Retrieved 22 January 2011.
  8. ^ "Nazi war criminal Klaus Barbie gets life". BBC. 3 July 1987. Retrieved 1 May 2009.
  9. ^ "Klaus Barbie ausgeliefert". Der Spiegel. 4 February 2008. Retrieved 22 January 2011.
  10. ^ "On behalf of his cruel crimes and specially for the Moulin case, Barbie was awarded, by Hitler, the First Class Iron Cross with Swords", jewishvirtuallibrary.org; accessed 29 September 2015.
  11. ^ On the deportation of the children of Izieu, at Yad Vashem website
  12. ^ "Klaus Barbie - The Butcher of Lyon". Dirkdeklein.net. 30 July 2016.
  13. ^ a b Wolfe, Robert (19 September 2001). "Analysis of the Investigative Records Repository file of Klaus Barbie". Interagency Working Group. Retrieved 1 May 2009.
  14. ^ a b Cockburn, Alexander; Clair, Jeffrey St. (1998). Whiteout: The CIA, Drugs and the Press. Verso. pp. 167–70. ISBN 9781859841396. Retrieved 17 January 2013.
  15. ^ Terkel, Studs (1985). The Good War. Ballantine. ISBN 978-0-345-32568-6.
  16. ^ Theroux, Paul (1995). The Pillars of Hercules: A Grand Tour of the Mediterranean. New York: Fawcett Columbine. p. 207. ISBN 0449910857.
  17. ^ "Vom Nazi-Verbrecher zum BND-Agenten". Der Spiegel (in German). 19 January 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2011.
  18. ^ Hammerschmidt, Peter: "Die Tatsache allein, daß V-43 118 SS-Hauptsturmführer war, schließt nicht aus, ihn als Quelle zu verwenden". Der Bundesnachrichtendienst und sein Agent Klaus Barbie, Zeitschrift für Geschichtswissenschaft (ZfG), 59. Jahrgang, 4/2011. METROPOL Verlag. Berlin 2011, S. 333–349. (in German)
  19. ^ "In pursuit of Bolivia's secret Nazi". The Guardian. London. 10 September 2008.
  20. ^ a b c d "Ex-Gestapo-Chef von Lyon: Nazi-Verbrecher Barbie in Drogenhandel verstrickt?". Bild (in German). 27 July 2015. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  21. ^ a b c d Winkler, Willi (10 March 2015). "Doku über Klaus Barbie: Zeit für die ganze Geschichte". Süddeutsche Zeitung (in German). Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  22. ^ a b c d Strothmann, Dietrich (5 November 1982). "Der Fall Klaus Barbie: Den Diktatoren stets zu Diensten". Die Zeit. ISSN 0044-2070. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  23. ^ a b c "Nazistjakt i Bolivia". Latinamerika.nu. 5 December 2008. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  24. ^ a b c d Smith, David (23 December 2007). "Barbie 'boasted of hunting down Che'". The Observer. ISSN 0029-7712. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  25. ^ "Letters that Nazi war criminal Barbie sent to Bolivia from prison revealed". San Diego Tribune (in Spanish). 5 January 2015. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  26. ^ Iglesias, Peter McFarren; Fadrique (5 June 2013). The Devil's Agent: Life, Times and Crimes of Nazi Klaus Barbie. Xlibris Corporation. pp. 269–282. ISBN 9781483636443. Retrieved 19 January 2017.[self-published source]
  27. ^ Laetitia Grevers (4 November 2012). "The Butcher of Bolivia". Bolivian Express Magazine. Retrieved 31 March 2016.
  28. ^ "Klaus Barbie, The Butcher of Lyon". Holocaust Research Project. Retrieved 31 March 2016.
  29. ^ L'avocat de la terreur [Terror's Advocate]. France: La Sofica Uni Etoile 3. 2007.
  30. ^ Finkielkraut, Alain (1992). Remembering in Vain: The Klaus Barbie Trial and Crimes Against Humanity. Columbia University Press. ISBN 978-0-231-07464-3. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
  31. ^ Beigbeder, Yves (2006). Judging War Crimes And Torture: French Justice And International Criminal Tribunals And Commissions (1940–2005). Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. pp. 204–. ISBN 978-90-04-15329-5. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
  32. ^ "Six Witnesses Identify Barbie, Who Was Ordered Back to Court". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. 27 May 1987.
  33. ^ "Klaus Barbie profile". Jewish Virtual Library. Retrieved 4 July 2014.
  34. ^ Saxon, Wolfgang (26 September 1991). "Klaus Barbie, 77, Lyons Gestapo Chief". The New York Times.
  35. ^ "The CIA kidnapped the young son of Klaus Barbie", UPI

Further reading

External links

12 April 1983

Harold Washington is elected as the first black mayor of Chicago.

Harold Lee Washington, April 15, 1922 – November 25, 1987 was an American lawyer and politician who was the 51st Mayor of Chicago. Washington became the first African–American to be elected as the city’s mayor in February 1983. He served as mayor from April 29, 1983 until his death on November 25, 1987. Earlier, he was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1981 to 1983, representing Illinois’ first district. Washington had previously served in the Illinois State Senate and the Illinois House of Representatives from 1965 until 1976.

Washington was born in Chicago, and raised in the Bronzeville neighborhood. After graduating from Roosevelt University and Northwestern University School of Law, he became involved in local 3rd Ward politics under future Congressman Ralph Metcalfe.

The earliest known ancestor of Harold Lee Washington, Isam/Isham Washington, was born a slave in 1832 in North Carolina. In 1864 he enlisted in the 8th United States Colored Heavy Artillery, Company L, in Paducah, Kentucky. Following his discharge in 1866, he began farming with his wife Rebecca Neal in Ballard County, Kentucky. Among their six children was Isam/Isom McDaniel Washington, who was born in 1875. In 1896, Mack Washington had married Arbella Weeks of Massac County, who had been born in Mississippi in 1878. In 1897, their first son, Roy L. Washington, father of Mayor Washington was born in Ballard County, Kentucky. In 1903, shortly after both families moved to Massac County, Illinois, the elder Washington died. After farming for a time, Mack Washington became a minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, serving numerous churches in Illinois until the death of his wife in 1952. Reverend I.M.D. Washington died in 1953.

Harold Lee Washington was born on April 15, 1922 at Cook County Hospital in Chicago, Illinois, to Roy and Bertha Washington. While still in high school in Lawrenceville, Illinois, Roy met Bertha from nearby Carrier Mills and the two married in 1916 in Harrisburg, Illinois. Their first son, Roy Jr., was born in Carrier Mills before the family moved to Chicago where Roy enrolled in Kent College of Law. A lawyer, he became one of the first black precinct captains in the city, and a Methodist minister. In 1918, daughter Geneva was born and second son Edward was born in 1920. Bertha left the family, possibly to seek her fortune as a singer, and the couple divorced in 1928. Bertha remarried and had seven more children including Ramon Price, who was an artist and eventually became chief curator of The DuSable Museum of African American History. Harold Washington grew up in Bronzeville, a Chicago neighborhood that was the center of black culture for the entire Midwest in the early and middle 20th century. Edward and Harold stayed with their father while Roy Jr and Geneva were cared by grandparents. After attending St Benedict the Moor Boarding School in Milwaukee from 1928 to 1932, Washington attended DuSable High School, then a newly established racially segregated public high school, and was a member of its first graduating class. In a 1939 citywide track meet, Washington placed first in the 110 meter high hurdles event, and second in the 220 meter low hurdles event. Between his junior and senior year of high school, Washington dropped out, claiming that he no longer felt challenged by the coursework. He worked at a meat-packing plant for a time before his father helped him get a job at the U.S. Treasury branch in the city. There he met Nancy Dorothy Finch, whom he married soon after; Washington was 19 years old and Dorothy was 17 years old. Seven months later, the U.S. was drawn into World War II with the bombing of Pearl Harbor by the Japanese on Sunday, December 7, 1941.

25 October 1983

The United States invades Grenada, six days after Prime Minister Maurice Bishop and several of his supporters are executed in a coup.

The United States invasion of Grenada began on 25 October 1983. The invasion, led by the United States, of the Caribbean island nation of Grenada, which has a population of about 91,000 and is located 160 kilometres north of Venezuela, resulted in a U.S. victory within a matter of days. Codenamed Operation Urgent Fury, it was triggered by the internal strife within the People’s Revolutionary Government that resulted in the house arrest and the execution of the previous leader and second Prime Minister of Grenada Maurice Bishop, and the establishment of a preliminary government, the Revolutionary Military Council with Hudson Austin as Chairman. The invasion resulted in the appointment of an interim government, followed by democratic elections in 1984. The country has remained a democratic nation since then.

Grenada gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1974. The Marxist-Leninist New Jewel Movement seized power in a coup in 1979 under Maurice Bishop, suspending the constitution and detaining a number of political prisoners. In 1983, an internal power struggle began over Bishop’s relatively moderate foreign policy approach, and on 19 October, hard-line military junta elements captured and executed Bishop and his partner Jacqueline Creft, along with three cabinet ministers and two union leaders. Subsequently, following appeals by the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States and the Governor-General of Grenada, Paul Scoon, the Reagan Administration in the U.S. quickly decided to launch a military intervention. U.S. President Ronald Reagan’s justification for the intervention was in part explained as “concerns over the 600 U.S. medical students on the island” and fears of a repeat of the Iran hostage crisis.

The U.S. invasion began six days after Bishop’s death, on the morning of 25 October 1983. The invading force consisted of the U.S. Army’s Rapid Deployment Force; U.S. Marines; U.S. Army Delta Force; U.S. Navy SEALs, and ancillary forces totaling 7,600 U.S.troops, together with Jamaican forces, and troops of the Regional Security System. They defeated Grenadian resistance after a low-altitude airborne assault by Rangers on Point Salines Airport at the south end of the island, and a Marine helicopter and amphibious landing on the north end at Pearls Airport. The military government of Hudson Austin was deposed and replaced by a government appointed by Governor-General Paul Scoon.

The invasion was criticised by several countries including Canada. British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher privately disapproved of the mission and the lack of notice she received, but publicly supported the intervention. The United Nations General Assembly, on 2 November 1983 with a vote of 108 to 9, condemned it as “a flagrant violation of international law”. Conversely, it enjoyed broad public support in the United States and, over time, a positive evaluation from the Grenadian population, who appreciated the fact that there had been relatively few civilian casualties, as well as the return to democratic elections in 1984 better source needed The U.S. awarded more than 5,000 medals for merit and valor.

The date of the invasion is now a national holiday in Grenada, called Thanksgiving Day, which commemorates the freeing, after the invasion, of several political prisoners who were subsequently elected to office. A truth and reconciliation commission was launched in 2000 to re-examine some of the controversies of the era; in particular, the commission made an unsuccessful attempt to find Bishop’s body, which had been disposed of at Hudson Austin’s order, and never found.

For the U.S., the invasion also highlighted issues with communication and coordination between the different branches of the United States military when operating together as a joint force, contributing to investigations and sweeping changes in the form of the Goldwater-Nichols Act and other reorganizations.

6 May 1983

The Hitler Diaries are reported as being a hoax after being examined by experts.

On 22 April 1983 a press release from Stern announced the existence of the diaries and their forthcoming publication; a press conference was announced for 25 April. On hearing the news from Stern, Jäckel stated that he was “extremely sceptical” about the diaries, while his fellow historian, Karl Dietrich Bracher of the University of Bonn also thought their legitimacy unlikely. Irving was receiving calls from international news companies—the BBC, The Observer, Newsweek, Bild Zeitung—and he was informing them all that the diaries were fakes. The German Chancellor, Helmut Kohl, also said that he could not believe the diaries were genuine, the following day The Times published the news that their Sunday sister paper had the serialisation rights for the UK; the edition also carried an extensive piece by Trevor-Roper with his opinion on the authenticity and importance of the discovery. By this stage the historian had growing doubts over the diaries, which he passed on to the editor of The Times, Charles Douglas-Home, the Times editor presumed that Trevor-Roper would also contact Giles at The Sunday Times, while Trevor-Roper thought that Douglas-Home would do so; neither did. The Sunday paper thus remained oblivious of the growing concerns that the diaries might not be genuine.

On the evening of 23 April the presses began rolling for the following day’s edition of The Sunday Times, after an evening meeting of the editorial staff, Giles phoned Trevor-Roper to ask him to write a piece rebutting the criticism of the diaries. He found that the historian had made “a 180 degree turn” regarding the diaries’ authenticity, and was now far from sure that they were real. The paper’s deputy editor, Brian MacArthur, rang Murdoch to see if they should stop the print run and re-write the affected pages. Murdoch’s reply was “Fuck Dacre. Publish”.

On the afternoon of the 24 April, in Hamburg for the press conference the following day, Trevor-Roper asked Heidemann for the name of his source: the journalist refused, and gave a different story of how the diaries had been acquired. Trevor-Roper was suspicious and questioned the reporter closely for over an hour. Heidemann accused the historian of acting “exactly like an officer of the British army” in 1945, at a subsequent dinner the historian was evasive when asked by Stern executives what he was going to say at the announcement the following day.

At the press conference both Trevor-Roper and Weinberg expressed their doubts at the authenticity, and stated that German experts needed to examine the diaries to confirm whether the works were genuine. Trevor-Roper went on to say that his doubts sprung from the lack of proof that these books were the same ones as had been on the crashed plane in 1945, he finished his statement by saying that “I regret that the normal method of historical verification has been sacrificed to the perhaps necessary requirements of a journalistic scoop.” The leading article in The Guardian described his public reversal as showing “moral courage”. Irving, who had been described in the introductory statement by Koch as a historian “with no reputation to lose”, stood at the microphone for questions, and asked how Hitler could have written his diary in the days following the 20 July plot, when his arm had been damaged, he denounced the diaries as forgeries, and held aloft the photocopied pages he had been given from Priesack. He asked if the ink in the diaries had been tested, but there was no response from the managers of Stern. Photographers and film crews jostled to get a better picture of Irving, and some punches were thrown by journalists while security guards moved in and forcibly removed Irving from the room, while he shouted “Ink! Ink!”.

With grave doubts now expressed about the authenticity of the diaries, Stern faced the possibility of legal action for disseminating Nazi propaganda. To ensure a definitive judgment on the diaries, Dr Hagen, one of the company’s lawyers, passed three complete diaries to Dr Henke at the Bundesarchiv for a more complete forensic examination. While the debate on the diaries’ authenticity continued, Stern published its special edition on 28 April, which provided Hitler’s purported views on the flight of Hess to England, Kristallnacht and the Holocaust. The following day Heidemann again met with Kujau, and bought the last four diaries from him.

On the following Sunday—1 May 1983—The Sunday Times published further stories providing the background to the diaries, linking them more closely to the plane crash in 1945, and providing a profile of Heidemann, that day, when The Daily Express rang Irving for a further comment on the diaries, he informed them that he now believed the diaries to be genuine; The Times ran the story of Irving’s U-turn the following day. Irving explained that Stern had shown him a diary from April 1945 in which the writing sloped downwards from left to right, and the script of which got smaller along the line, at a subsequent press conference Irving explained that he had been examining the diaries of Dr Theodor Morell, Hitler’s personal doctor, in which Morell diagnosed the Führer as having Parkinson’s disease, a symptom of which was to write in the way the text appeared in the diaries. Harris posits that further motives may also have played a part—the lack of reference to the Holocaust in the diaries may have been perceived by Irving as supporting evidence for his thesis, put forward in his book Hitler’s War, that the Holocaust took place without Hitler’s knowledge, the same day Hagen visited the Bundesarchiv and was told of their findings: ultraviolet light had shown a fluorescent element to the paper, which should not have been present in an old document, and that the bindings of one of the diaries included polyester which had not been made before 1953. Research in the archives also showed a number of errors, the findings were partial only, and not conclusive; more volumes were provided to aid the analysis.

Genuine signature of Adolf Hitler
Forged version of Hitler’s signature, showing slight differences from the original
Kujau’s version of Hitler’s signature, which Kenneth W. Rendell described as a “terrible rendition”.
When Hagen reported back to the Stern management, an emergency meeting was called and Schulte-Hillen demanded the identity of Heidemann’s source, the journalist relented, and provided the provenance of the diaries as Kujau had given it to him. Harris describes how a bunker mentality descended on the Stern management as, instead of accepting the truth of the Bundesarchiv’s findings, they searched for alternative explanations as to how post-war whitening agents could have been used in the wartime paper. The paper then released a statement defending their position which Harris judges was “resonant with hollow bravado”.

While Koch was touring the US, giving interviews to most of the major news channels, he met Kenneth W. Rendell, a handwriting expert in the studios of CBS, and showed him one of the volumes. Rendell’s first impression was that the diaries were forged, he later reported that “everything looked wrong”, including new-looking ink, poor quality paper and signatures that were “terrible renditions” of Hitler’s. Rendell concludes the diaries were not particularly good fakes, calling them “bad forgeries but a great hoax”, he states that “with the exception of imitating Hitler’s habit of slanting his writing diagonally as he wrote across the page, the forger failed to observe or to imitate the most fundamental characteristics of his handwriting.”

On 4 May fifteen volumes of the diaries were removed from the Swiss bank vault and distributed to various forensic scientists: four went to the Bundesarchiv and eleven went to the Swiss specialists in St Gallen, the initial results were ready on 6 May, which confirmed what the forensic experts had been telling the management of Stern for the last week: the diaries were poor forgeries, with modern components and ink that was not in common use in wartime Germany. Measurements had been taken of the evaporation of chloride in the ink which showed the diaries had been written within the previous two years. There were also factual errors, including some from Domarus’s Hitler: Reden und Proklamationen, 1932–45 that Kujau had copied. Before passing the news to Stern, the Bundesarchiv had already informed the government, saying it was “a ministerial matter”, the managers at Stern tried to release the first press statement that acknowledged the forensic findings and stated that the diaries were forged, but the official government announcement was released five minutes before Stern’s.

10 November 1983

Bill Gates announces Windows 1.0.

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Microsoft chief Bill Gates unveils the Windows operating system for PCs. Don’t hold your breath waiting until you can buy a copy … unless you can hold your breath for two years.

Gates, Microsoft’s president and board chairman, held an elaborate event at New York City’s posh Helmsley Palace Hotel. The debutante at this ball was an operating system with a graphical user interface.

A History of Microsoft Windows Photo Gallery
BSOD Through the AgesIf you were struggling with the arcane and unfriendly MS-DOS, you were ready to get something that was easier to drive. Typing commands at the C prompt may have been a piece of C:\ake for programmers and geeks, but it was a pain in the wrist for the run-of-the-mill office chair jockey.

Microsoft started working on a product first called Interface Manager in September 1981. Early prototypes used MS Word-style menus at the bottom of the screen. That changed to pulldown menus and dialogs (a la Xerox Star) in 1982.

By 1983, Microsoft was facing competition from the just-released VisiOn and the forthcoming TopView. Apple had already released Lisa, but Digital’s GEM, Quarterdeck’s DESQ, the Amiga Workbench, IBM OS/2 and Tandy DeskMate were all still in the future.

18 June 1983

The astronaut Sally Ride becomes the first American woman in space.

One of six women selected in NASA’s 1978 astronaut class, Sally Ride was the first of them to fly. When she rode aboard the space shuttle Challenger as it lifted off from Kennedy Space Center on June 18, 1983, she became the first American woman in space and captured the nation’s attention and imagination as a symbol of the ability of women to break barriers. As one of the three mission specialists on the STS-7 mission, she played a vital role in helping the crew deploy communications satellites, conduct experiments and make use of the first Shuttle Pallet Satellite. Her pioneering voyage and remarkable life helped, as President Barack Obama said soon after her death last summer, “inspire generations of young girls to reach for the stars” for she “showed us that there are no limits to what we can achieve.”

Sally Ride was born in Los Angeles, California, on May 26, 1951. Fascinated by science from a young age, she pursued the study of physics, along with English, in school. As she was graduating from Stanford University with a Ph.D. in physics, having done research in astrophysics and free electron laser physics, Ride noticed a newspaper ad for NASA astronauts. She turned in an application, along with 8,000 other people, and was one of only 35 chosen to join the astronaut corps. Joining NASA in 1978, she served as the ground-based capsule communicator, or capcom, for the second and third space shuttle missions and helped with development of the space shuttle’s robotic arm.After her selection for the crew of STS-7, and thereby becoming the first American woman in space, Ride faced intense media attention.