Discovered diary of Nazi helpmate sheds new light on Holocaust
Hitler underling Alfred Rosenberg was one of chief architects in the systematic deaths of millions
The long-lost diary of Nazi Alfred Rosenberg has been recovered, offering new, horrific insights into the systematic deaths of millions of Jews, Poles, gypsies and others during the darkest days of World War II. The U.S. government has recovered 400 pages from the notorious Hitler confidante, who played a central role in the implementation of the concentration camps throughout occupied Europe.
Alfred Rosenberg, a Nazi Reich minister, convicted at Nuremberg and hanged in 1946, might contradict what historians have previously maintained with the discovery of his diary.
"The documentation is of considerable importance for the study of the Nazi era, including the history of the Holocaust," said the assessment, prepared by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington.
"A cursory content analysis indicates that the material sheds new light on a number of important issues relating to the Third Reich's policy. The diary will be an important source of information to historians that compliments, and in part contradicts, already known documentation."
Rosenberg, a Nazi Reich minister, convicted at Nuremberg and hanged in 1946, might contradict what historians have previously maintained. Further details about the diary's contents could not be learned, and a U.S. government official stressed that the museum's analysis remains preliminary.
The diary does include details about tensions within the German high-command. The crisis caused by the flight of Rudolf Hess to Britain in 1941 is presented in detail, according to preliminary analysis.
The diary offers a loose collection of Rosenberg's recollections from spring 1936 to winter 1944, according to the museum's analysis. Most entries are written in Rosenberg's looping cursive, some on paper torn from a ledger book and others on the back of official Nazi stationary.
An early and powerful Nazi ideologue, Rosenberg forged much of the party's views on racial issues. He directed the Nazi party's foreign affairs department and edited the Nazi newspaper. Several of his memos to Hitler were cited as evidence during the post-war Nuremberg trials.
Rosenberg also directed the systematic Nazi looting of Jewish art, cultural and religious property throughout Europe. The Nazi unit created to seize such artifacts was called Task Force Reichsleiter Rosenberg.
Convicted of crimes against humanity, Rosenberg was one of a dozen senior Nazi officials executed in October 1946. His diary, once held by Nuremberg prosecutors as evidence, vanished after the trial.
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