The old man lay dying in a California nursing home, the dark secrets of his alliance with Adolf Eichmann still safe after all these years. Until that day when his son got the unexpected call from Washington. “Did you know,” the prosecutor asked, “that your father was a high-ranking ranking Nazi in the SS?”
Thousands of Nazis—from concentration camp guards to high-level officers in the Third Reich—came to the United States after World War II and quietly settled into new lives. They had little trouble getting in. With scant scrutiny, many gained entry on their own as self-styled war “refugees,” their pasts easily disguised and their war crimes soon forgotten. But some had help and protection: from the United States government. The CIA, the FBI, and the military all put Hitler’s minions to work as spies, intelligence assets and leading scientists and engineers, whitewashing their histories.
For the first time, once-secret government records and interviews tell the full story not only of the Nazi scientists brought to America, but of the German spies and con men who followed them and lived for decades as Americans entrenched in their communities. Only years after their arrival did private sleuths and government prosecutors begin trying to identify America’s hidden Nazis. But even then, American intelligence agencies secretly worked to protect a number of their prized spies from exposure. Today, a few Nazis still remain on American soil.
Investigative reporter Eric Lichtblau, relying on a trove of newly disclosed documents and scores of interviews with participants in this little-known chapter of postwar history, tells the shocking and shameful story of how America became a safe haven for Hitler’s men.
NEWS & REVIEWS
Lichtblau brings ample investigative skills and an elegant writing style to this unsavory but important story. The Nazis Next Door is a captivating book rooted in first-rate research.
–New York Times Sunday Book Review (full review)
Lichtblau utilizes obscure sources and declassified files, tenaciously circling back to a dark reality: Many of the estimated 10,000 Nazis who settled here were involved in the worst aspects of the Holocaust. Fascinating and infuriating corrective to the American mythology of the “Good War.”
–Kirkus Review (full review)
An essential read for all those interested in World War Two, the Cold War and 20TH-Century history
–Library Journal (full review)
Bits of the story have been reported in the past, but the full scope of the operation has now been reported in Times reporter Eric Lichtblau’s new book, The Nazis Next Door
--Washington Post (full story)
The Nazis Next Door provides an intimate and digestible introduction to a subject still very much in the news.
–The Chicago Tribune (full story)
‘At least 1,000′ Nazis worked for US as spies, author says American agencies not only employed them, but also sometimes covered up their war crimes for decades, according to new book.
–The Times of Israel (full story)
Chilling: CIA and other spy agencies hired 1,000 Nazis during Cold War, report finds; The New York Times uncovers more unsavory details about the Cold War
–Salon (full story)
America’s Six-Decade Nazi Spy Cover-Up
Why Are Spy Agencies Still Classifying Cold War Documents?
–Jewish Daily Forward (full story)
Bookstores next week will begin selling Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Eric Lichtblau’s book, The Nazis Next Door: How America Became a Safe Haven for Hitler’s Men. The excerpts he has published are jaw-dropping.
–Orange County Register (full story)
In The Nazis Next Door, published Tuesday, Eric Lichtblau uses declassified documents and interviews to tell the story of how the U.S. became a safe haven for Nazis after the war, recounting one infuriating detail after another.
–Newsweek (full story)
PRAISE & REVIEWS
“Gripping….An inspiring example of reporters doing what they do best….All the President’s Men for an age of terror.”
—The New York Times
“A riveting account of the Bush administration’s various steps and missteps in chasing down terrorists….A must-read for those curious about the back story in the legal war on terror.”
“This highly detailed, well-documented account is an exhibit of investigative reporting at its finest.”
—Rocky Mountain News
“Chilling….Reminds us that our constitutional rights are fragile.”
“Even readers who have followed the Bush administration’s legalistic contortions…may be unnerved by Lichtblau’s recounting of the human dramas behind the stories of laws broken and ignored.”
—The New York Times Book Review