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The Ratlines

Alex Constantine - April 24, 2010

From the May June 2010 Trumpet Print Edition »

 b1102231491 - The Ratlines

" ... The Vatican’s connection with this sordid history went beyond a simple blessing from the pope. The Vatican actually helped to smuggle many of the worst criminals of the age! 'For fugitive Nazis, all roads led to Rome' ... "

Adolf Eichmann, “the architect of the Holocaust,” escaped from Europe after World War II and remained hidden for 15 years before being captured. Germany holds a cache of sealed files detailing this history and is fighting to keep it secret despite critics’ objections. Some observers believe the documents would shed embarrassing additional light on German-Vatican collusion on the “ratlines,” an already proven postwar operation to protect Nazi leaders. Following are a few excerpts from the 1992 book Unholy Trinity, written by Mark Aarons and John Loftus, describing this important chapter in German-Vatican history.

 It is absurd to believe that 30,000 fugitive Nazis escaped to South America on the few U-Boats remaining at the end of the war, or that they all made their own travel arrangements. Modern popular culture has presented the escape of the Nazis in an adventurous, almost romantic light. The most popular Nazi smugglers are odessa and Die Spinne, although other mysterious groups are also mentioned from time to time. But in the main these stories owe more to the fertile imagination of scriptwriters and novelists than to historical research and accuracy.

The truth is much more ordinary, almost mundane. It is all the more shocking as a result. For whatever successes odessa achieved, they were mere amateurs at Nazi-smuggling when compared with the Vatican. Draganovic’s Ratline [the name given to the Vatican’s smuggling operation] was truly professional, ensuring that many guilty war criminals reached safe havens. Often they did not end up in the remote jungles of South America, but settled instead in Britain, Canada, Australia and the United States. …

The Vatican has consistently claimed that they were unaware of the identity of those who were undeserving of their humanitarian assistance. But some influential priests not only knew who the Nazis were, they actively sought them out and provided extra-special treatment. …

In 1948 Franz Stangl wearily trudged along the road to Rome. Three years earlier he had been an important man: Commandant of the Treblinka extermination camp. He was meticulous in his work. When the boxcars crammed full of deported men, women and children arrived … Stangl insisted on order. The passengers were told to disembark for a routine rest stop and showers. … It was all so swift, so organized, so deadly. The showers were actually a gas chamber where 900,000 people, mostly Jews, were murdered immediately upon arrival. Unlike Auschwitz, no work was done here. Treblinka existed for one purpose only: mass murder of human beings. Franz Stangl had commanded the Third Reich’s most efficient death factory. …

Stangl said that when he came to Rome he was in fact looking for [Roman Catholic] Bishop Alois Hudal, rector of the Pontificio Santa Maria dell’Anima, one of three seminaries for German priests in Rome. It was Hudal’s name that had been whispered throughout the Nazi underground: “The bishop came into the room where I was waiting and he held out both his hands and said, ‘You must be Franz Stangl. I was expecting you.’”

Stangl described the power and influence of Hudal’s extensive smuggling network for fugitive Nazis. It was Hudal who arranged “quarters in Rome where I was to stay till my papers came through. And he gave me a bit more money—I had almost nothing left.” After several weeks, Hudal “called me in and gave me my new passport—a Red Cross Passport … [he] got me an entrance visa to Syria and a job in a textile mill in Damascus, and he gave me a ticket for the ship. So I went to Syria.” …

[Monsignor Karl Bayer, Rome director for Catholic relief organization Caritas] admitted, “Perhaps Hudal did get batches of passports for these particular people.” Finally he conceded that the money Hudal gave Stangl would certainly have come from Vatican funds. “The pope did provide money for this; in driblets sometimes, but it did come.”

Was Stangl an isolated case, a regrettable but unavoidable accident by a legitimate Catholic charity? Or was he one of many who escaped via Hudal’s secret church connection? Simon Wiesenthal, who was responsible for Stangl’s eventual recapture in Brazil in 1967, believes that a sophisticated Vatican network was involved. …

Wiesenthal is convinced that Hudal was also responsible for smuggling the most infamous war criminal of them all: Adolf Eichmann, the chief architect of the Holocaust. As head of the SS Department for “Jewish Affairs,” Eichmann’s careful supervision ensured that men like Brunner, Stangl and Wagner ran the machinery of death at peak capacity. Wiesenthal believes that Hudal equipped Eichmann with a new identity as a Croatian refugee called “Richard Klement,” and sent him to Genoa. There Eichmann was apparently hidden in a monastery under Archbishop Siri’s charitable control, before finally being smuggled to South America.

Someone so notorious could not be protected forever. Eichmann was eventually tracked down in Argentina by Israeli intelligence, kidnapped, tried and executed in Jerusalem in 1962. What angers Wiesenthal is that a Catholic relief organization, Caritas, “paid all of the traveling expenses for Eichmann” to reach South America.

Official Vatican historian Father Robert Graham admits that Hudal might have helped “a handful, a mere handful of Nazi war criminals to escape”: “When Eichmann was arrested it was alleged he passed through Rome and got some help from Bishop Hudal. Hudal was asked about this and said, ‘I don’t know, I helped a lot of people and Eichmann may have been among them.’” …

If Eichmann was a case of unauthorized assistance, he was certainly not the only instance. Hudal seemed to make mistakes with frightening regularity. Wiesenthal recalls, “During my search for Eichmann I found out that many [war criminals] were living in monasteries, equipped by Hudal with false documents,” showing they were refugees. One point is certain: Many war criminals who escaped to South America have gratefully acknowledged that they owed their freedom to the Austrian-born bishop. …

It is not surprising that Wiensenthal accuses Hudal. The bishop’s pro-Nazi views were well known. Even Father Graham concedes the point: “Hudal was rather notorious in Rome for being openly philo-Nazi. He had this idea that it was his divine call to settle relations between the Nazis and the Catholic Church.” By the early 1930s, Hudal openly supported Hitler, traveling widely through Italy and Germany to address large crowds of German-speaking Catholics. From the very beginning of Nazi rule, he warmly embraced the new government as his own. …

Hudal gave a speech at the Anima in Rome. Among the invited guests were members of the German Diplomatic Corps, as well as local representatives of various Nazi organizations. The bishop [Hudal] told his approving audience that “in this hour of destiny all German Catholics living abroad welcome the new German Reich, whose philosophies accord both with Christian and national values.” … In 1936 he published a “philosophical” treatise, The Foundations of National Socialism. … [T]he book was fulsome in its praise for the ideas, program and actions of the Nazis …. Hudal was not the only cleric to hold these views. The primate of the Austrian Church, Cardinal Theodore Innitzer, was at that time strongly pro-Nazi. It was natural, therefore, that he gave Hudal’s book an “imprimatur,” or official church permission for publication. The cardinal glowingly endorsed it “as a valuable attempt to pacify the German people’s religious situation.” …

Apparently Hudal’s high Nazi profile did not harm his Vatican career. Since 1930 he had been a consulter in the Holy Office, a senior Vatican tribunal working “in the most rigorous secrecy,” as U.S. intelligence reported. … [A]s Hudal’s views grew more stridently and publicly pro-Nazi, nothing was done either to discipline or remove him from this powerful post. Instead the Vatican promoted him in June 1933 from priest to titular bishop, an extremely rare honor for a relatively lowly rector of a teaching college. …

Father Jacob Weinbacher … has no doubt that “Hudal was very close to [Pope] Pius xii … they were friends.” … Far from being just another anonymous cleric on the fringes of the Vatican, “Hudal may well have been the sounding board for the pope in the German-speaking countries.” …

By early 1944 when the Allies landed in Sicily, even Hudal could see that Hitler’s “Thousand Year Reich” was doomed. As long as the Nazi armies were winning, he had proudly driven around Rome with a “Greater Germany” flag on his car ….

Hudal had nothing but contempt for the American victors who helped him: “… I felt duty bound after 1945 to devote my whole charitable work mainly to former National Socialists and fascists, especially to so called ‘war criminals.’”

Hudal’s self-confessed activities are all the more controversial because he operated with the full authority of the Vatican. •


From the Editor

The Real Vatican Scandal

By Gerald Flurry 

The Roman Catholic Church is mired in a pedophilia scandal in several nations. However, there is a far worse scandal in that church that we all should be deeply concerned about. Most of the media is not even exposing it.

Some people believe that we are too critical of the Catholic Church at times. So let me make this very clear: We believe that God is going to save most Catholics and most members of other religions. But God is going to do it in His own time frame. That is easily provable from the Bible.

Here is an oppressively disturbing report by Allan Hall in the Mail Online, March 12:

“Germany is fighting to keep files sealed that detail Adolf Eichmann’s life on the run before he was captured by Mossad agents and tried for war crimes in Israel.

“Documents about the Holocaust’s chief logistics organizer’s escape from Europe and 15-year-exile in Argentina are currently bound by a 50-year secrecy order. But campaigners challenging the rule say the Eichmann files may prove German and Vatican officials colluded in his escape and freedom. The secrecy order is being fought in a benchmark court case against the bnd, Germany’s domestic intelligence service, which wants the 4,500 pages of documents on Adolf Eichmann to remain out of the public domain. They cite that intelligence agencies in our countries will be ‘frightened off’ in future data-sharing if they are revealed. Critics believe this is a smokescreen designed to avoid official embarrassment both in Berlin and the Vatican. It is well documented that German Bishop Alois Hudal in Rome operated postwar ‘ratlines,’ getting passports for wanted Nazis to allow them to escape justice. Franz Stangl, commandant of the Treblinka extermination camp, admitted to British Nazi expert Gitta Sereny that Hudal helped him get away after the defeat of Germany in 1945.

Eichmann also escaped. He was the ultimate ‘desk murderer’ in the Third Reich who, as head of department ivb4 of the SS in Berlin, was responsible for the trains that carried millions to their deaths at extermination centers in Nazi-occupied Poland. After the war he was captured but fled from Allied custody. … For 15 years he lived, sometimes under his own name, in Argentina, raising his family while working at a VW car plant. In 1960, acting on a tip-off, a Mossad team was dispatched to Buenos Aires with orders to kidnap him and bring him back to Israel for trial. He was seized, stood trial, found guilty and hanged on May 31, 1962.

Now the Federal Administrative Court in Leipzig, Germany, is studying the files about his getaway from Europe and life in Argentina to decide if they should be made public. … But critics believe what the files will really reveal are the levels of assistance, succor and turning a blind eye to Nazi fugitives from officials in defeated Germany, together with details of Vatican assistance to top war criminals like Eichmann. … It is well known that the German Embassy in Buenos Aires issued German passports to Eichmann and his family in their real names when they applied for them. The same went for Dr. Josef Mengele, the infamous medic of the Auschwitz extermination camp” (emphasis mine throughout)."

If you want to know who Germany, America and Britain are in Bible prophecy, request our book The United States and Britain in Prophecy. All of our literature is free.

The Ratlines

Trumpet readers are well aware that in December 1991, Germany decided to recognize breakaway Yugoslav republics Slovenia and Croatia despite strong opposition from the EU, the United States and the United Nations—and despite the fact that the move again resurrected unsavory memories of Germany’s fascist past.

One week later, the Vatican also recognized Croatia.

The EU eventually recognized the two states a month later. The UN also backed away from a direct confrontation with Germany. And the U.S.—which at first blamed the Germans for provoking Yugoslavia’s civil war by their recognition of the two breakaway states—eventually flip-flopped to even SUPPORT Germany’s decision militarily!

In their book Unholy Trinity, Mark Aarons and John Loftus give us powerful reasons to fear Germany and the Vatican. ...

During World War ii, many Serbs ... were butchered by the Croats using medieval methods. “Eyes had been gouged out,” they wrote, “limbs severed, intestines and other internal organs ripped from the bodies of the living. Some were slaughtered like beasts, their throats cut from ear to ear with special knives. Others died from blows to their heads with sledgehammers. Many more were simply burned alive.”

Much more alarming, however, is the “special relationship” between the pope and Croatia at a time when Croatian fascists were slaughtering Serbs. Aarons and Loftus say the atrocities were already under way when Pope Pius xii met with Ante Pavelic, Croatia’s leader, in April 1941.

The pope agreed to meet with Pavelic again in May 1943, by which time the Nazi atrocities against the Serbs were without refute. (One Italian journalist interviewed Pavelic in his home and was shocked to find a large bowl of Serbian eyes the fascist had been collecting.) Yet, according to Unholy Trinity, “Pius himself promised to give Pavelic his personal blessing again. By this time, the Holy See possessed abundant evidence of the atrocities committed by his regime.”

Any right-thinking person ought to ask why the very highest officials in the Catholic Church, including the pope, would associate with and even protect Croatian fascists.

The Vatican’s connection with this sordid history went beyond a simple blessing from the pope. The Vatican actually helped to smuggle many of the worst criminals of the age! “For fugitive Nazis, all roads led to Rome,” Aarons and Loftus wrote.

High-ranking ministers, civil servants, even Ante Pavelic himself, with help from the Vatican’s ratlines, were able to disappear into thin air, intelligence sources have confirmed. At the time, the Vatican labeled these escapees “refugees.” But they were Croatian fascists who were helping Hitler’s regime!

Remember, this all happened at the end of World War ii!

Documents prove that Pope Pius xii was by far the greatest Nazi smuggler at the end of World War ii! In spite of that despicable history, Pope Pius xii is already headed for canonization by Pope Benedict xvi! Not exactly an act of repentance! And another man who later became pope, Giovanni Montini, was also deeply involved in this crime against humanity!

What if Germany turns its wrath toward America, first of all, the next time around? That is precisely what the post-World War ii Nazi underground has pledged to do!

They know that the U.S. mass-produced most of the armaments that beat them in World Wars i and ii.

We cannot afford to take this lightly.

These shocking facts reveal that the Vatican was deeply involved with the Germans in World War ii. There is simply no other explanation. But most people continue to ignore the truth—to their own great peril!

Aarons and Loftus understand the important history between Croatia and the papacy, dating back to a.d. 700. The Catholic Church has been involved in mass murder since a.d. 554, when the first Holy Roman Empire began. This church has more to hide—or repent of—than any other institution in the history of the world!

It was primarily Germany and the Vatican that started the war in Yugoslavia. This is the so-called Holy Roman Empire in action! This power should be feared a thousand times more than the Serbs. Still the world races madly toward disaster because men refuse to face the truth.

Why can’t we see that Germany and the Vatican are renewing their ties from World War ii? That history reaches back to Charlemagne and beyond. No war-making machine has ever spilled more blood.

Why would a church that is supposed to teach God’s love again ally itself with Croatia and Germany, considering their heinous Nazi crimes? Wouldn’t a repentant church or state do just the opposite? Unless they are planning for a future somewhat akin to the dream of Adolf Hitler!

Margaret Thatcher was the only high-ranking politician in the last generation who would even discuss the “German problem” in modern Europe. Only she had the understanding and courage to do so! It probably cost Mrs. Thatcher her job.

No politician today has yet had the courage to discuss the Vatican problem. That weakness can only lead to a bloody disaster.

At the time of Croatia’s breaking away, President Franjo Tudjman refused to admit any wrongdoing on Croatia’s part in the Nazi slaughter of World War ii. Yet Germany and the Vatican still defied the world and started a civil war to recognize that Catholic nation! Does that make either of those entities appear repentant of their World War ii sins? And if they are not repentant, what does that portend for our future?

This is just the small beginning of the resurrected Holy Roman Empire with its bloody past and bloodier future. However, it is politically incorrect to criticize the Vatican or Germany for continuing their horrendous past. That requires courage that our politicians and religious leaders today do not have.

All this information can be obtained from the Vatican’s own archives!

The ratlines prove how closely the Vatican worked with the Nazis—perhaps the most barbaric and savagely cruel government ever on Earth!

Still the Catholic Church is forgiven—by men. Not only this time, but also throughout the bloody history of the Holy Roman Empire.

The world has seen six heads of that violent and bloody empire, comprised mostly of Germany and the Vatican. Now the seventh and last head is on the scene. The Vatican-Nazi history is a horrendous prophetic insight into what is about to happen again! And very soon! (Request our booklet Germany and the Holy Roman Empire.)

The seventh head is going to be the most brutal and cruel empire of them all. It is going to cause the worst suffering ever on Earth—far eclipsing the suffering of World War ii.

The real Vatican scandal revolves around the ratlines of the sixth head of the Holy Roman Empire—Germany and the Vatican in World War ii. These two entities have followed that same brutal philosophy in every head of the Holy Roman Empire. Any good history book will tell you that.

But here is the best possible news you could ever receive: That seventh and last head of the Holy Roman Empire is going to usher in the Second Coming of Jesus Christ to bring this world peace and full joy! Many Bible prophecies reveal that truth. When Christ was on this Earth, He prophesied that He would have to return or there would be no flesh saved alive! (Matthew 24:21).

That great event will smash the seventh and last head of the Holy Roman Empire forever!

If those prophesied seven heads of the Holy Roman Empire have appeared—and they have—then so must the prophesied Second Coming of Jesus Christ.

God’s Word has never failed. It cannot fail. Knowing this should fill us with real hope.

Obviously God must resurrect most of those billions of people who have lived in the past to teach them this awesome truth. That too is prophesied.

The ultimate shocker today is not about the “ratlines.” The most mind-numbing shocker is how gullible people are about Germany and the Vatican!

Americans, the British peoples and the Jewish nation are going to learn the truth by what I am writing or by being victims of the Holy Roman Empire. We have been teaching this message for over 70 years. God’s true Church has warned about the Holy Roman Empire for about 1,500 years!

By words or events, God is about to awaken men from their spiritual coma.

To learn more about recent German and Vatican ventures, request a free copy of our booklet The Rising Beast.


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  1. This is living proof that churches and religions follow degerating cultural trends whatever the source. Hey Will, remember how you and Pat would point out the rightwing preachers making the devil sign on TV? Right, eerrr correct again. Found out the Latvians were mass murderers too with the nazis as were the russian cossacks.

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