The Nazis in the jungles of the Amazon and the Brazilian fascists. 1935-40
Grainer’s cross overshadows the more simple burials of Joas and Jose from the nearby village of Santo Domingo, who are also buried here. This grave is a local tourist attraction, but no one in the district knows its history.
Nobody knows who raised a tiled roof over the cross; no one remembers who replaced the white plate with the swastika, seen in historical photography, on engraving. Bizarre legends swirl around the mysterious grave. “Here was Hitler,” assures the village teacher from San Antonio with the most serious expression on his face.
At the Amazon, he arrived in 1935 as part of a German expedition to the Rio Yari, exploring this remote area until 1937. He died, most likely, from yellow fever or malaria. His comrades in the expedition and installed this cross on the grave on the river bank. Where he still flaunts.
The expedition, which cost Greiner life, is one of the most mysterious pages of the era of National Socialism. For 17 consecutive months, three Germans, led by a Berlin traveler, adventurer, hunter and zoologist Otto Schulz-Kammfenkel, accompanied by a dozen assistants and Indians, studied remote areas on the border of French Guiana.
On the instructions of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute in Berlin, they fished rare tropical animals for the museum, charted new rivers and visited isolated Indian tribes. For the first time they tested a hydroplane on the Amazon.
In Brazil, the German expeditionary force must land and, with the help of local Indians, move through the jungle to Cayenne, the capital of French Guiana.
After his return from the jungle, Schultz-Kammhenkel, who had become SS Untersturmfuhrer, in April 1940, handed over his super secret “Guiana project” Heinrich Himmler, Reichsfuhrer SS.
“The two largest, sparsely and extremely useful reserve living spaces on earth are Siberia and South America,” wrote Himmler.
“Only they can be taken into account as unique for the resettlement and mastering by the Nordic ruling peoples. As Siberia threatens to get into the hands of the Chinese, then as a potential colonial settlement area, for Germany it will be closed. ”
The German bridgehead in South America will also counterbalance US influence in the region, according to the “homebrew” geostrategy:
“From these considerations and in connection with the categorical priority of the right to world domination of the most valuable people, that is, for the suitable higher races of Europe under the German leadership, I consider it necessary to give an instruction to settle in the Western Hemisphere in time.”
Otto Schulz-Kampfhenkel came from a good Berlin family of average prosperity, already in his childhood he collected spiders, amphibians and other animals for his terrarium. He studied biology in Berlin and Freiburg. But he was attracted to travel and at the age of 21 he went on the first expedition to Africa.
In Liberia, he caught a dwarf river hippopotamus for the Berlin zoo and several other exotic animals. On his adventures he wrote a book that quickly became a bestseller.
After this success, he immediately began to forge plans for a large expedition to the Amazon. In government institutions, in companies and in museums, he campaigned for his project.
He planned to write a book and make a film about the expedition, numerous German entrepreneurs supported him with money and equipment. In the Ministry of Aviation Hermann Goering, Schultz-Kammfenkel asked for a brand new Heinkel-type seaplane on which he was going to explore the tropical forests along the Jari River.
But this was only part of the truth: on Jari Schultz-Kampfhenkel developed a new method for deciphering aerial photographs, which was further improved for military purposes already during the fighting.
On six boats with about a hundred tons of cargo, Schulz-Kamfenkel and his group in the fall of 1935 set out from the base camp at the Santo Antonio Falls in the direction of French Guiana.
However, a desperate enterprise began under an unhappy star. Biplane suffered an accident in just a few weeks, when at the start collided with a toplike and rolled over. Residents of the nearest village saved the lives of Schultz-Kammfenkel and Krause. The Germans packed the wreckage of the plane and sent it to Germany.
Several dozen times they unloaded their heavy boats and dragged them, along with the cargo, through the jungle, bypassing the numerous rapids and waterfalls in the upper Rio Yari. One day, Schulz-Kampfenkel turned over on one of the rapids, his boat, along with all the contents, including equipment, photos and film materials, drowned.
He himself lived for several days in a jungle, until his comrades found him. All three recovered from malaria, Schulz-Kampfenkel, in addition to this, also suffered from heavy dents, which almost cost him his life. However, only the elder worker Greiner died of fever.
He was lucky: one Indian of the Aparai tribe offered his services as a guide and brought Schulz-Kampfenkel to the Warao Indians in the far north of Brazil (The people inhabiting the northeast of Venezuela and the west of Guyana.) The term “varao” is translated as “boat people” and is associated with the way of life of this people.
The main means of transportation are canoes. Other ways of traveling – even walking – are hampered by the presence of hundreds of creeks, streams, swamps, permanent floods of Orinoco.
The young children of Warao already know how to hold on well to the mother’s neck already at a very young age and early learn to row and swim, often before they learn to walk.) A young German admirer of Karl May immediately gave his faithful guide the name “Winnetu”.
His exhibits he demonstrated in many cities, in the Museum of Natural History of the Berlin Humboldt University and to this day you can see the skulls of monkeys “from the collection of Schulz-Kampfenkel.
Expedition report “The mystery of the underworld of the virgin forest” in 1938 was published as a separate book. The UFA film studio started rolling out his 90-minute movie “The Great Film of German Studies”, which for several weeks did not leave the screens of theaters from Flensburg to Munich.
About the Guyana Project & quot; neither in the book nor in the film was, of course, a word – it was a secret affair. To give effect to his insane idea, the energetic zoologist began to gather around him a circle of enthusiasts, which he christened the “Schulz-Kampfenkel Research Group”.
He even recorded it in the register of Berlin public organizations, but the SS included it in its structures, and Schultz-Kampfchenkel became Untersturmfuhrer.
However, in Himmler the project provoked only a relative interest. He ordered the transfer of Schultz-Kampfenkel, again submit the plan “at the right time”. For the Nazi leadership, then there were more important things, in addition, French Guiana was already ruled by the obedient Vichy regime.
German submarines, who hunted for allies in the Caribbean Sea and off the coast of South America, could easily use the supplies and supplies in French Guiana. Thus, the conquest campaign was considered unnecessary, saving the Indians of Rio Yari from the spectacle of German soldiers in the Brazilian selva.
The researchers were engaged in flying around and shooting the Libyan desert, testing new aircraft and the recently developed Volkswagen light all-terrain vehicle. In addition, the chief of counterintelligence Abwehr Admiral Canaris, wanted to know if a strike by enemy forces in the region of the Mediterranean is possible.
However, in 1943, Schulz-Kampfenkel returned to Germany, his team was now engaged in aerial photography and decoding pictures in Eastern Europe, Greece and the Baltic.
After the war, he was arrested by the Americans and sent to a prisoner of war camp in Salzburg. During the interrogations, Schulz-Kampfenkel prompted the US secret intelligence officers to present the results of their scientific work to America’s disposal.
This is confirmed by secret documents of the FBI, stored in the National Archives in Washington and in 2006 declassified for wide access.
Most of his films about Rio Yari, who managed to save, he processed in short documentaries, demonstrated by the Institute of Ethnography in Hamburg (where he had also settled himself by then) for educational and scientific purposes. Along with this, he filmed a movie about nature, about the shallow coastal shallow waters and documentaries about the movement for independence of West Africa.
Schultz-Kapfenkel died in 1989. He did not hesitate to die at the symposium on the Amazon in Berlin. Before his colleagues, he dreamily said that he would again return to his Indians in the Amazonian selva.
The Rio Yari region, which in the mid-1930s Schulz-Kompfankel explored and inspired his insane projects, is now in German hands by the way. The belated irony of history.
Three years ago he organized an expedition in the wake of Schulz-Kampfenkel. Deep in the jungle, they discovered a landmark marked with the year 1936, which, along with Grainer’s grave, is probably the only evidence of that expedition that became food for an extravagant dream of a German springboard in South America.
Brazilian slaves of the Nazis: in the Amazon delta, orphans were forced to build a new “faterland”.
Above the buildings he waved the Nazi flag. Historians managed to find three former Nummernmenschen (“numbered people” – German), as the slaves were called masters. After visiting the estate, they showed the bricks to journalists, which were made by hand, as well as the graves of their comrades who died of ill-treatment.
Only in the mid-1940s the authorities intervened, abolishing this practice. Now the surviving slaves demand compensation from the authorities of Brazil, who allowed their enslavement.
The Party of Integralists was called the “Brazilian Integralist Action” (Port A & c; at Integralista Brasileira, AIB). The word & quot; integralism & quot; was also used by the traditionalist movement of the Portuguese integrals (Port., Integralismo Lusitano).
The school is named after the famous Chilean dictator who ruled the South American country from 1973 to 1990. According to the local press, a poster with a swastika was displayed at the school building. The school plans to recruit students from March 28.
The founder of the school, Godolfredo Rodriguez Pacheco, defends his offspring. My ultimate goal is to form a nationalist political party here in the south of Chile. And I do not mind if people call me Nazi, “he told the local press.
The Nazis in the jungles of the Amazon and the Brazilian fascists. 1935-40