862.20235/1–2346: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Chargé in Argentina ( Cabot )

u.s. urgent

160. Embtel 232, Jan 23. In connection with your recommendation that additional disclosures be made at earliest possible time your views are urgently requested on proposal that you:

Present a special request to FonOff that with further reference to our request for repatriation German civilians, Argentine Govt immediately take special precautions for safe custody pending departure on Highland Monarch of following four leading Nazis: [Page 193] Becker, head of Hemisphere Secret Service (Sicherheitsdienst); Harnisch, head of the Abwehr for South America; Freude, Nazi “stay behind” leader; and Utzinger, chief Nazi technician. Your request would stress that these men ran the Nazi hemisphere espionage and subversive network from Argentina; that fact of their continued presence in Argentina at this late date, and in Freude’s case complete freedom, is one of principal reasons why we question Argentine protestations of readiness comply Hemisphere obligations. You should also submit record of our requests for action these cases.
In making request you would explain to FonMin that additional reasons for lack of trust by our Govt are now provided by German FonOff telegrams (listed below) which demonstrate that the Nazis had penetrated to highest quarters in FonOff and, indeed, to highest post in Argentine Emb in Washington. In giving telegrams to FonMin you would stress those relating to Oscar Ibarra García who is now revealed as having been established in service of Nazis in darkest days of the war. This is man who was UndSecy of FonOff of present Govt, Argentine Delegate to United Nations Conference, and was first Argentine Ambassador to US after recognition of Farrell govt, and the admission of Argentina to United Nations.
You may add that we are bound to inquire whether there may be other Nazi agents in FonOff who are responsible for failure Argentine compliance commitments. In this connection refer to attitude of Director Economic Division Argentine FonOff telegrams 2951 Aug 19, 1942 and 2481 July 18, 1942.27
Immediately after presenting foregoing to FonMin, you should give entire story to press, releasing photostat copies of German telegrams as well as Pochhammer papers28 showing Freude role. In presenting background you would indicate that request for these four Nazis coupled with proof of Nazi penetration FonOff combine elements which run throughout our case: continued Nazi power in Argentina, failure of Farrell govt to take decisive action, Nazi agents in high places of Farrell govt. You should express fear lest last minute technical objections such as those which blocked repatriation on Red Jacket may again be advanced. You will appreciate desirability of playing up Ibarra Garcia story since it so effectively dramatizes reasons for our policy. Main line should be one of the first official acts of Farrell govt following acceptance by American republics of their protestations of allegiance to United Nations and hemisphere solidarity was to send Nazi agent to Washington and UNO Conference. If Farrell govt pleads ignorance of his character, all protestations that it has cleaned out Nazis may properly be questioned on ground that they do not know extent of Nazi penetration.

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  1. Neither printed.
  2. Papers relating to the interrogation in Germany of Wilhelm von Pochhammer.