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SS man who arrested Anne Frank worked for BND after the war
Anne Frank. Photo: DPA

SS man who arrested Anne Frank worked for BND after the war

Published: 10 Apr 2011 09:37 GMT+02:00
Updated: 10 Apr 2011 09:37 GMT+02:00

The SS officer responsible for the arrest of Anne Frank was one of many Nazis employed by Germany's Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND) foreign intelligence agency after World War II, Focus reported on Saturday.

The magazine said Karl Josef Silberbauer worked as a confidential informant and recruiter for the BND, according to evidence found by Hamburg journalist and author Peter-Ferdinand Koch in US archives.

Silberbauer was a feared interrogation specialist who spent years working as an informant for the foreign intelligence agency. Earlier, he worked for the Organisation Gehlen, a forerunner of the BND. During the war, he held the rank of SS-Oberscharführer.

Anne Frank and her family went into hiding with four other Jews starting in 1942. Operating on a tip-off, SS officers raided their secret annex in August 1944.

Anne Frank was sent to Auschwitz before her transfer to Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. She died of typhus, aged 15, in March 1945, shortly before the war ended.

The strong network of former SS officers in Germany's foreign intelligence agency is the subject of a new book by Koch, titled "Enttarnt."

According to his research, up to 200 former employees of Adolf Hitler's Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA), the main Reich security office, worked for the BND, based near Munich in Pullach, at one time or another.

Members of the SS Totenkopfverbände, the units charged with running the Nazi concentration camps, also reportedly worked for the foreign intelligence agency.

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Your comments about this article

10:03 April 10, 2011 by fatherknowsbest
This is not news, everyone knows the germans were in bed with each other after the war despite denazification programs.
12:29 April 10, 2011 by wenddiver
May God grant that the men who hired the SS men rot in hell next to them. The lowest form of life on earth, terrorists posing as Soldiers and disgracing the efforts of the common Soldiers.
14:11 April 10, 2011 by Englishted
wenddiver may I ask you to read the new book about "normal" soldiers in WW2 ,

from what I have read in reports it is a eye opener .
16:56 April 10, 2011 by Sastry.M
What about Gehlen's services in setting up C.I.A in the U.S under the Directorship of Allen Dulles? The thumb presses securely three fingers directed to us while only one points toward an accused freely!

May be one reason why Germany shirks from active comradeship with her former enemies turned present western allies preferring to stay neutral in U.N voting.
05:35 April 11, 2011 by neunElf
Gehlen was a master of gamesmanship!

He built his carefully manufactured persona, as the omnipotent seer of all things Russian, into a powerful bargaining tool which he used to dupe the gullible Western allies, particularly the Americans!
08:59 April 11, 2011 by Talonx
This is alltogether unsurprising given the allies attitudes towards German reconstruction (quite similar to the Japanese occupation actually, 'keep the little monsters in power'). The German people had less to do with these particular decisions than did policy makers from the Allies.

Or, in the case of the East, the soviets. Unlike the in the West, in the East, denazification seriously took place. If the Soviets, GDR, and RAF where right on about anything (and they weren't right about much), it was that the west was run by former nazis for some amount of time and they stuck on to smaller positions well until the 80s in some cases.
10:13 April 11, 2011 by JAMessersmith
Talonx said: "If the Soviets, GDR, and RAF where (sic) right on about anything (and they weren't right about much), it was that the west was run by former nazis for some amount of time..."

Yes, that's probably true. But during the Cold War the choice for many Central Europeans was between "former" Nazis and "current" Marxists. Both ideologies were responsible for the deaths of millions, so perhaps those who were "former" adherents were viewed as a lesser evil than those who were "current" adherents? Nazism had been shamed by that point. But even though Marxism was responsible for more senseless killings, it hadn't been shamed to the same degree. Many people at that time still blamed the Nazis for certain Marxist crimes (like the Katyn Massacre, for example). Even to this day Marxism receives far less scrutiny in the West, regardless of how many are dead around the world because of it.
10:28 April 11, 2011 by Angry Ami
@JAMessersmith

So true, and the collective amnesia on the part of the modern "left" is in itself a crime, comrade Stalin was responsible for just as much death and destruction, if not more than uncle Hitler, but still this gets downplayed by the "left", so if they want to talk about how bad the right was then they also need to admit how bad the "left" was as well.
14:36 April 11, 2011 by whpmgr
ISnt it amazing that no matter wehre you look, there is bad, and more bad. You use those that were experts to do things you didn't have the guts to do, then stand back and condemn them for being who they were -which is why you hired them.

When the US GOvt had people go out and snipe at Vietnamese VIPs during the war, tehy didn't go to the local church and pick soemone that is pious and perfect. They found people with a propensity to do bad things and excel at it.

What am I saying? Hell, we needed people that could help us get soeminfo on teh Russkies, adn we had to go to the dregs of society for people with those skills. They served a purpose then as they do now, and decent people just aren't really the ones you count on to do some of this kind of work.

We need bad people to do somethings normal people can't or won't do, and we hope that by using them for the forces of good, may be ok. There are few other choices some times, teh argument is really, does the ends justify the means?
15:38 April 11, 2011 by DOZ
I wasn't alive during the Nazi Era but I must say, that the treatment (by the west)of Germans born Post-Nazi Germany is just as immorall. Too bad Germany was too concerned about improving it's reputation than looking out for those who would be Tortured Physically, Psycologically and Emotionally for their entire lives by the Western Governments. One thing for sure is my experiences prove that Germans are gutless cowards (like the West) even after WW2.
21:39 April 11, 2011 by neunElf
Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot = what, 50 million, 200 million?

The left has never been made to face up to their crimes against humanity.

I forgot Rachael Carson!

She's still killing a million Africans a year!
23:15 April 11, 2011 by xx.weirich.xx
THANK YOU to Angry Ami for saying that the left is bad too, as well as all the people that agreed. It's very annoying how the left always squeals about how bad the right is when THEY have had some bad seeds too...

And, on the article, this stuff shouldn't surprise us at all. It seems new stories come out like this all the time. What else was Germany supposed to do though, form a new government out of dust? Do we forget that after WWII, most- I think- German citizens had been affiliated with the Nazis at some point in time? Kids were forced to join the Hitler Youth and such?
14:21 April 12, 2011 by whpmgr
I remember talking with a friend's grandmother in the mid 90's. She told me that Hitler was great, and people had work. She told me that if you didn't ahve a job, you could go to these work camps where they would give you something to do. She actually believed what her husband told her about the camps. She was in the Saarland. Her quote of the "Arbeit Macht (spelling please?) Frei was proof, to her at least, that through work you are liberated. She must have been in her 70's and still held that things were great. It comes down to perspective.

When you push a country on their knees and elbows, and bend them, at soem time they will snap back and sometimes, when they do the world feels it. I am awaiting a reaction from Egypt, Syria, and Pakistan. Bad things are coming our way and we need to be safe and aware. So, hey, if we find there are Stasi experts out there that could be of service (Putting things into perspective) do we not use them as Putin makes a soviet comeback? I bet the BND is using them now building sources and getting info as fast as they can.

Is it wrong? Is it Amoral? would we not hire an old failed suicide bomber to tell us info we desperately need about the inside workings of Al Quaeda? If the answer in your head is no, are you really anyone that should be in a position to protect your country? If you don't hesitate, maybe you are too eager. But if you say yes, and you worry about it, but know you must do it anyways, but try to control it, maybe it is you the world needs.
23:18 April 12, 2011 by MaKo
@ whpmgr

Whoa, son. The death of 6 million human beings does not come down to a matter of perspective.
03:54 April 13, 2011 by Der Grenadier aus Aachen
Wait. You mean to tell me that bad people SURVIVED the war and continued their professions afterward???

Also, I thought that as soon as a bad regime falls, all of their spies stop existing! You mean they might continue to be spies for their new masters? DEAR GOD!
16:09 April 13, 2011 by whpmgr
Mako: You see, in your rush to speak on the behalf of all mankind you forget one thing: Perspective is all that matters. The native indians that were given such a bad deal in the US of A, no one talks of their extermination in the name of manifest destiny. Perspective. The world is no longer talking about Rwanda and the Tutsi and Hutu problem, perspective- you only care if you are personally affected by it, and as far as the Grand mother was concerned, it was just a palce to go and do your job for Adolph and the Vaterland. Perspective.

She believed that everything that was done was just things no one had control over. The mysterious "Gestapo" and those bad Germans were responsible. The good Germans paid taxes, worked hard for the country, did as they were told and were therefore absolved of any guilt, since it was teh People in chargte that mandated everything. Perspective. I hardly think that the death of 6 Million Jews (or more if you read elsewhere) and all of the other political prisoners really mattered to her. She lost soemthing after the war, never quite got it back, and her very own family came to me to apologize fr her voicing her opinion.

You cannot discount the thoughts and words of the generation that made it happen. You lose their perspective and you give it a chance of happening again.

Something happened, soemthing allowed them to forget their moral obligations and caused them to look the other way. I think we know what that soemthing was, but the fact it happened must not be overlooked and under-studied. My perspective- the one of a retired Military man of the world, been there and seen a great deal I shall never forget.
17:00 April 13, 2011 by Sastry.M
@DOZ,#10--Germans should keep to themselves having endured all horrors, torture and misery during and after ww2. Germany recovered magnificently sooner than her bullying victors.What was proved by this were the inherent virtues of German people summed up and worked through relentlessly in the national reconstruction with hard working discipline avoiding all resentful strikes.

Hence there no necessity to "prove" themselves committing their hard earned wisdom to their all time bullying masters who point only one finger condemning German indecisiveness and cowardice while they thrice do so unwittingly vide#4 above unto themselves!
15:25 April 14, 2011 by whpmgr
I am a true believer and lover of the Real Germany. The homoginized one where the Others, auslanders (like myself but non christian) came in and tried to make it soemthing it never was. the Germans came back faster than the "Bullies" because the Germans could only go up. They were destroyed and the benefit of that is to rebuild and change things that you didn't liek. Teh UK had a chance to rebuild also. I dare say it was worth losing so many people in burning bombings, but the end result of destruction is to renew and through renewal, you have jobs.

The US did not get bombed, and supplied most of the money and help to rebuild Germany, so, once again, teh Germans owe a bit of this success to us. They had the minds that built the Jet, the MP-42, and so many other technical breakthroughs, but if they had not killed off teh Jewish populace, they would have been much farther ahead.

Teh US not being destroyed meant that when the planes stopped being built, the bombs and bullets and ships, the workload shifted from wartime to housing industry. SO Germany built up their industry, we built up our Housing industry and kept some of out industrial manufacturing until around the lates 60's and 70's and then the Japanese -who were also destroyed and rebuilt and kept an industrial base beat us down like little bitc*&%). Now China is doing the same.

When your country is at the bottom, they can only go up. WHen you are on top trying to stay on top, you can only go down. SO the Germans can't keep to themselves. to keep the economy moving they have to go out to the world. In turn they need to spread work out so other countries will buy their goods, and they will go through teh same cycle the US is going through now.
18:10 April 14, 2011 by Sastry.M
The greatest secret in Nature's Creation lies in all things we take for granted and the subtlest is human nature itself. Elementary materials can be classified according to Periodic Table,plants and animals can be rationally characterized by Botanical and Zoological studies but the very human beings who undertake all pursuits in the quest for knowledge fail miserably in true conduct of righteous and rational behavior. This does not,however, negate all scientific studies and accumulated knowledge concerning homo sapiens but the ultimate failure to resolve the human dichotomy.

Because of the susceptibilities of human mind to external impressions and inner compunctions of self satisfaction according to individual as well as sociologically recognized nature, the respective characteristics can be rationally assessed relating to any particular nationality of people.

Seen from this angle the Germans qualify themselves splendidly in all pursuits of human learning both in natural arts and scientific achievements as well as appreciation of oriental studies and wisdom.

They were never involved in gunboat diplomacy or slave trade but fought for U.S independence both directly under Washington and helping the cause as community settlers of major percentage. Nick named as "Wander Voegel" or wandering birds there has been no dearth for German pursuits around the globe and their capacity to mix up and share their undertakings genuinely with other cultures and people. The great successes in business and trade has been an established tradition since the second Reich and the cause for professional jealousy. "Made in Germany" was stamped at British ports by embarkation commandants to distinguish imported products against 'be' and 'buy' local British but only boosted German sales!

Petty jealousies have developed into professional hatred and Germany was embargoed and humiliated after the first and destroyed during the second world wars but not the indefatigable spirit of her people.

The charge of killing 6million Jews in gas chambers was confined to only closed room court trials while the horror concerned all humanity and the guilt proven as lesson to all human nationalities under an internationally constituted bench of Judges publishing the truth of proven facts to the whole world.
23:29 April 15, 2011 by Curmudgeon
There were allegations, many years ago, that Otto Frank was wanted for selling the German Government faulty wares, and that is why the family moved to Holland.

Sastry.M and wenddiver:

Read the Avalon Project on line at Yale University. It is the transcripts of the Nuremberg Trials. You will be surprised at the allegations made and what the evidence presented was.
01:49 April 16, 2011 by kkiwi54
The idea of National Socialism being "extreme right wing" is a lie created by left wingers so as to disassociate themselves from the crimes of the Nazis. Nazis, Bolsheviks, & Fascists are all slightly different styles of extreme socialism. Read "Liberal Fascism" by Jonah Goldberg.
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