Klaus barbie

Klaus Barbie . Captain of the Security Services took over the Fourth Section of the Gestapo . His long succession of horrors was awarded by Hitler with the Iron Cross First Class with Swords , which he awarded months after the cruel torture and death of resistance leader Jean Moulin . Klaus Barbie lived almost forty years in impunity, a refugee in Bolivia . The 5 of February of 1983 , was finally moved to France and joined the Montluc prison, to answer for crimes against humanity.


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  • 1 Biographical synthesis
    • 1 Political trajectory
    • 2 Last years
  • 2 Reference
  • 3 Source

Biographical synthesis

Klaus Barbie was born in 1913 , in the bucolic village of Bad Godesberg . His father was a school teacher, he taught him the first letters and later he entered the Friedrich-Wilhelm Institute .

Political career

Hitler had come to power in Germany three months before , when on April 1, 1933, Barbie enrolled in the Hitler Youth. In 1934 , he obtained his baccalaureate degree, and immediately after (1935) he entered the security services of Himmler , one of the men closest to the Führer . From then on, his participation in the Hitler machine was constant.

In 1937 he joined the Nazi party with the number 4,583,085 and two years later, when he married Regina Margaret Maria Willms , he already held a high-ranking position.

By 1940 , Klaus Barbie was a trusted man of the system and important missions began to fall on his shoulders. In May, he arrived in The Hague as part of a research group that was supposed to fully understand the situation of Jews in the city. From The Hague he went to Amsterdam and from there to Lyon , where he arrived in November 1942 . In that French city, the scene of his most famous crimes, as captain of the Security Services he took charge of the Fourth Section of the Gestapo. His long succession of horrors was awarded by Hitler the “First Class Iron Cross with Swords”, which he awarded months after the cruel torture and death of resistance leader Jean Moulin.

Put on trial in his absence in the city of Lyon at the end of the war, he was sentenced to the death penalty for his participation in 4,342 murders, the sending of 7,591 Jews to concentration camps and the arrest and torture of 14,311 members of the French resistance. The nickname “The Butcher of Lyon” has its reason for being.

Between 1945 and 1955 , Barbie lived protected in the US occupation zone, but when her arrest was requested in 1956, the US authorities said they had lost track of her. Later, he obtained a false passport in the name of Klaus Alttman, which allowed him to travel to Bolivia , where he obtained nationality in 1957 .

Last years

After 40 years of life on the fringes of justice (in which he even dared to declare that he only regretted having left some Jews alive) Klaus Barbie was arrested in Bolivia on January 25 , 1983 . Transferred to France on 5 of February of 1983 , one day after he entered the prison Montluc.

During the plane flight from El Alto (Bolivia) to France the journalist Carlos Soria Galvarro conducted an interview with him published under the title Klaus Barbie: I did my duty [1] :

What positions did he hold during the occupation of France?
I was head of the anti-guerrilla group in France and there were several groups that have had their work, my special work was the war against the guerrillas.

What outstanding actions did you carry out in that period?
I don’t know, they were almost permanent actions, I can’t give a detail … it would be … 40 years have passed, right? I do not remember.

You. Do you think that France, Europe and the world should forget about their crimes?
Yes, absolutely because there have been so many new crimes, more than a hundred wars after World War II and all the recent crimes that are public knowledge.

But you know that the peoples of Europe and particularly France have not forgotten them (…)
I forgot them. Whether they have not forgotten is another matter. I forgot. In any case, after the war and everything that happened, I have done my duty.

Does this imply that he also forgot the Nazi-fascist ideology, that he renounced it?
Eh … look, that has nothing to do with the idea of ​​what we have been, I already explained the causes last night, but causes within Germany, not outside. Many people have been able to follow that movement, right? Almost 80 percent of the German population.

You justify the actions of the German government at that time
I already said no. I am not the one who can justify about those things, this can finally be maybe one day in history, I don’t know, because Napoleon was also condemned almost by all of Europe during his actions but nevertheless, after 200 years he is a hero For the history.

Is your conscience clear?

The crimes committed by “The Butcher of Lyon” during the Second World War had already prescribed, but he was tried under the legal category of crimes against humanity and on July 4 he was sentenced to life imprisonment. He dies of cancer while in prison.


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