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West Knew of Holocaust in March 1942

The West may have been informed about Nazi Germany’s plans for the Holocaust as early as March 1942, rather than August as previously thought.

“It has been decided to eradicate all the Jews,” says a newly declassified document written by the Chilean consul in Prague, Gonzalo Montt Rivas. The translation of the Spanish dispatch revealed that Rivas had informed Chilean officials on November 24, 1941, of a German decree that Jews living abroad could no longer be German subjects and that their property would go immediately to the Nazis:

The Jew [residing abroad] loses German nationality immediately. . . . The fortune which the Reich obtains in this manner will serve to solve the questions in connection with Jews.

Interpreting the decree and other developments, he added: “The German triumph [in the war] will leave Europe freed of Semites.”

The dispatch was obtained by British intelligence agents, and an English translation ended up in American files by March 20, 1942.

Source: Report Hints West Aware Of Holocaust In Early ‘42, Washington Post, (July 3, 2001).