Vatican Complicity In WWII


Based on declassified counter-intelligence documents from the World War II era, a law suit has been filed against the Vatican Bank and the Franciscan Order, for sheltering Nazi war criminals from the Balkans at the Vatican during and after the war. Jonathan Levy, co-counsel for plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit, says that the case is based in part on a 1998 US State Department report that implicates the Vatican in the laundering of Nazi gold. According to Levy, “plenty of evidence already exists to tarnish the reputations of both Pope Pius XII and his successor Paul VI.”

Levy says, “The then Vatican Secretary of State Montini, later Paul VI, met regularly with Ante Pavelic, known as the \'Butcher of the Balkans.\' Pius XII and Paul VI were in bed with the Nazis acting as their landlord, travel agent, and banker.” According to evidence compiled for the case, the Vatican sheltered Nazi war criminals in safe houses, provided escape routes or ratlines to South America, and used the Vatican Bank to launder Nazi funds.

The Vatican itself is suspected of having destroyed all evidence relating to those activities. The Vatican spokesman Rev. Peter Gumpel accused the Jewish historians involved of “clearly incorrect behavior.” They have, according to Gumpel, helped mount a “slanderous campaign” against the Catholic Church by “publicly spread[ing] the suspicion” that the Holy See was trying to hide documents “that in their judgment could be compromising.” In response, Levy says he will make available on his firm’s web site copies of the most damning documents, including one authored by Special Agent William Gowen, one of the few remaining witnesses to Vatican complicity with former Nazis.

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