The US investigated claims that Adolf Hitler survived World War II and was living in Colombia in the 1950s, according to CIA documents.
The documents have been publicly available for years under the Nazi War Crimes Disclosure Act but have re-surfaced this week in the wake of the US publishing some 2,800 documents related to JFK’s assassination.
An intelligence memo cites reports from an informant in 1954 about a man living in Colombia who “strongly resembled and claimed to be Adolf Hitler.”
Phillip Citroen, a former SS trooper and the co-owner of the former Maracaibo Times, told the CIA that he met the supposed Nazi dictator in a place called ‘Residencies Coloniales’ in the city of Tunja, Colombia, which he described as being “overly populated with former German Nazis.”
“According to Citroen, the Germans residing in Tunja follow this alleged Adolf Hitler with an idolatry of the Nazi past, addressing him as ‘Elder Fuhrer’ and affording him the Nazi Salute and storm-trooper adulation,” the memo notes.
In an effort to prove his story, Citroen showed agents a photograph of himself sitting next to the alleged Hitler.
The CIA said it was skeptical of the report, citing the “apparent fantasy” of the allegations.
But the claim didn’t end there.
A second man – identified only as Cimelody-3 – told agents the same story, which he said Citroen had related to his friend.
Cimelody-3 said Citroen claimed to be in contact with the alleged Hitler about once a month on his regular visits to Colombia.
Citroen also reportedly claimed that Hitler left Colombia for Argentina around January 1955.
Agents again doubted the veracity of the report, saying that “neither Chimelody-3 nor this station is in a position to give an intelligent evaluation of the information and it is being forwarded as of possible interest.”
Hitler’s fate has long been the subject of speculation and conspiracy theories.
Historians widely believe that the former Nazi dictator committed suicide by gunshot and cyanide poisoning as the Soviet Army closed in on Berlin in the final days of the war.