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How Hitler Shared His Thoughts And Plans Of The Coming
World Crisis With The Argentine Ambassador To Germany
Who Served In Berlin From 1932-39...And Saw Everything

From The Web
1-16-20

Eduardo Labougle Carranza served in Berlin between 1932 and 1939, where he witnessed the rise to power of the then German Chancellor.

The backroom of his meetings with the Führer in which he entrusted his plans and analyzed the Argentine participation in the world war conflicts of the twentieth century


Hitler greets the ambassador on February 8, 1933 during his first reception to the Diplomatic Corps. According to Labougle, the Führer looked frac, his hairstyle was disheveled and he observed that "not having a belt where he always put his hands, his fingers played something nervously with the cuffs of the shirt and the sleeves too long"

The Argentine ambassador Eduardo Labougle Carranza had the privilege, if it can be qualified, of being a witness and observer in the days prior to the arrival of Chancellor Adolf Hitler . He felt and experienced the enormous crisis that involved German society that, desperately, opened the doors to the Führer. On January 30, 1933, Joseph Goebbels, one of his closest collaborators, would write in his diary: "There will be no living force capable of getting me alive from here." Another more realistic, and not without reason, ventured in a letter to German President Marshal Paul von Hindenburg : "I solemnly prophesy that this lunatic will throw our Reich into the abyss and lead our nation to inconceivable misery. Future generations will curse you in your grave for what you have done. " It was nothing more or nothing less than the omen of General Erich Friedrich Wilhelm von Ludendorff, Hindenburg's old comrade in arms during the First World War.

Labougle served in Berlin, between 1932 and 1939, and observed everything: the fire of Parliament, the bleak night of burning books while dining with Hitler, the persecution of opponents, Nazi congresses in Nuremberg, "the night of the long knives "of 1934, the Berlin Olympics of 1936, the Kristallnacht and the enactment of racial laws, the antechambers of the Holocaust, the secret rearmament of the Reich Armed Forces, the Anschluss of 1938 and the unusable Munich Pact , where the break-up of Czechoslovakia took place.

While these and other events were taking place, the diplomatic corps accredited in Berlin watched with dismay at how they lived in a police state and informed their capitals without receiving more answers. At least of those countries that did not have a strong incidence in Europe. In general, the answer was silence and the mist of indifference. Labougle moved with remarkable ease in Berlin, both at the official and social levels. It was what he had to do, the only way to inform what he heard and what he saw. As an old Argentine diplomat said, "diplomacy is the art of managing silences . "

His activity caused misgivings in some of the ambassadors. For example in William Dodd , representative of Franklin Roosevelt (1933-1937), who came to say that Labougle had "fascist mentality." He who has read his memoirs knows that it was not so, that there was not the slightest sign of affinity, nor to Nazism as to fascism . Moreover, on one occasion he was reconvened to General Juan Pistarini (later Minister Juan Domingo Perón's minister) after observing one night at the Opera, of the Unter den Linden (Under the Tilos), who made the Nazi greeting with his hand right. This is what my daughter Delia Labougle told me years later. In this regard, Labougle wrote: "Recently, in a social gathering, a princess very much in favor of Nazism asked me naively, in the presence of (Heinrich) Himmler and (Viktor) Lutze , head of the SA, why I did not greet the way Nazi. Those mentioned did not give me time to answer. They both told him that it was not necessary, that they knew me an excellent friend from Germany and that that was enough. "


The visit of Rear Admiral León Scasso, head of the Sea Fleet at the head of the Argentine naval delegation, at that time Foreign Minister Adolf Hitler

The best thing would be to say, like Labougle, that, except for ambassadors with direct interests in Europe, " the rest were perplexed spectators of the great drama ." Before the criticism of William Dodd, without a doubt, the best defense of the task of the Argentine delegate was made by the US ambassador. in Moscow, Joseph Edward Davies in his book Mission in Moscow , when he says that Dodd failed to realize his important mission in Berlin. He did not grasp the reality of events. He kept repeating that he was not a diplomat but a university professor and since he hated Nazism, he did not see the reason for linking with German officials . According to their reasoning, ambassadors who did not commune with the New Order should remain oblivious, "as mere observers outside the rulers." Thus, it should be informed by what is "said" and not by what each could collect directly from the official media.
Labougle moved with remarkable ease in Berlin, both at the official and social levels. It was what he had to do, the only way to inform what he heard and what he saw. As an old Argentine diplomat said, "diplomacy is the art of managing silences"

The historians Manvell and Fraenkel in their biography of Herman Göring agree with Davies: " Dodd was a Democrat who hated the Nazis, but he was also an inexperienced diplomat and had no contact with the Nazi leaders . He was also a sick man who did not enjoy the sympathies of Sumner Wells ", undersecretary of the State Department, because he did not consider him suitable for the position.

In 1937, after participating in the naval magazine for the coronation of King George VI of the United Kingdom, Argentine battleships ARA Moreno and ARA Rivadavia visited Germany and were received at different bases. At the head of the Argentine naval delegation, the head of the Sea Fleet, Rear Admiral León Scasso , stood out. The Reich government, in an unusual gesture, on May 26 transferred to Berlin in a Luftwaffe plane, to the main plane of the two battleships. The Argentine Navy at that time was the most powerful in South America and for some the seventh largest fleet on the planet .

That night, Ambassador Eduardo Labougle offered them a dinner. The next day they greeted Grand Admiral Erich Raeder and at 12:30 noon they visited Adolf Hitler at the Chancellery . After the meeting, Argentine officials went to lunch at Raeder's residence along with senior officers of the Kriegsmarine . On the occasion, Rear Admiral Scasso received an autographed photo by Hitler and the head of the Argentine delegation provided for "the glorious German navy." Detail: after the coup of 1943, Admiral Scasso was Federal Auditor in Cordoba . He resigned in 1944 in disagreement with the rupture of relations with Germany.

According to the German ambassador in Buenos Aires, Edmund von Thermann , when he was interrogated after the war by the Americans, Scasso "was rather an Argentine nationalist than a German pro, although he admired Hitler's methods he always received me with the warmer courtesy. " According to the statement of the Naval Attaché in Argentina, Captain Dietrich Niebuhr, to his American interrogators, Scasso "was the nazi major of the Navy but (I had) few contacts with him."

On Wednesday, January 11, 1939, the entire diplomatic corps was invited to the new headquarters of the Chancellery in the Vosstrasse. The photos of that day show the foreign representatives in their gala uniforms, accompanied by the Chief of Protocol, Baron Hans von Charles Dömberg, an official who drew attention by his two meters high. In others Eduardo Labougle is observed talking with Adolf Hitler, hand in hand , and around they observe the minister von Ribbentrop; Ambassador of Attolico of Italy and Secretary of State Obbergrupenfüher Hans Heinrich Lammers, head of the chancellery.

On the first day of June 1939 the news was published in the Berlin newspapers of the transfer of the Argentine Ambassador Labougle . His new destination was the Argentine embassy in the Republic of Chile, one of the most important destinations of Argentine diplomacy. Among the travel preparations, administrative tasks and the farewells they gave him, the Labougle marriage left Germany only on July 4, 1939, when they embarked at the port of Hamburg on the Cap Arcona heading to Buenos Aires. He left behind him - after seven years in Berlin - numerous social friends, businessmen from industry, commerce and government.

Minister Von Ribbentrop offered him a lunch at his home and, upon completion, decorated him with the "Great German Eagle Cross". Through the Minister of State of the Chancellery Otto Meissner asked for an interview with Adolf Hitler in order to officially say goodbye. It was what corresponded . He was received at the Führerbau (House of the Chief) in Munich on Sunday, June 25, 1939. On the train trip from Berlin to Munich he talked to the Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler for a long time, telling him "many interesting things about which I prefer report verbally. " On board the German ship Cap Arcona (sunk in 1945), Labougle took the opportunity to write to his chancellor José María Cantilo a long report of twenty machine veneers.

Before entering the main office of the Führerbau, one must clarify what Labougle ignored: on May 23, 1939, Hitler summoned the highest military leaders in the Chancellery. While taking small sips of lemonade, he tells them that the time has come: "If we make war (to Poland) it will not be for Danzig, but to extend our living space in the East and ensure the subsistence of future generations. Also, if fate forces us into a conflict with Westerners, it is better to have more space in the East before. It is not about law or lack of law: it is about the existence of 80 million Germans. " It was the White Plan, the invasion of Poland , and so it appears in the Minutes of that meeting in document L-79, USA-27 of the Nuremberg Trial.


Hitler, on his back, talks in one of the "Führerbau" corridors in Munich

Once seated, the Führer began by thanking Argentine neutrality during World War I. The Argentine explained: "He told me that he hoped and hoped that Argentina would also maintain its independent situation in the future and that, on that basis, Argentina can always count on its most sincere desire and support to strengthen ties."

On the first day of June 1939 the news was published in the Berlin newspapers of the transfer of the Argentine Ambassador Labougle. His new destination was the Argentine embassy in the Republic of Chile, one of the most important destinations of Argentine diplomacy. Among the travel preparations, administrative tasks and the farewells they gave him, the Labougle marriage left Germany only on July 4, 1939

After the first verbal scuffles Labougle asked him about the world political crisis. "Leaning back in his chair and with one of his usual gestures, he replied in an ironic tone, more or less the following: 'Bah. The situation can only be clarified when the Poles (and this he did with a derogatory gesture), finally and once, they solve it, or if they want to conquer only Eastern Prussia, or also Pomerania and Silesia, or if they want to the Oder or even Berlin itself. The Poles have delusions of greatness and they they forget that Germany has not only the most powerful army in the world but, without a doubt, the best equipped (including aviation and navy), so we don't have to fear anyone. If Poland tries to carry out its daring projects, it will be he will let you know, he will be instructed with the speed of lightning, where his borders are actually located, which are not in any way on the Elbe River or, possibly, on the Rhine. Poland cannot count on the help of no other country " he described.

"The German chancellor," Labougle wrote, "does not believe that France and England are almost resolved to intervene in the conflict. In his sullen irony, he told me something like that Poland would be swept once more into its existence as an independent country. Mr. Hitler he is convinced that in the case of Poland, both Scandinavian and Baltic countries and also Belgium, Holland and Yugoslavia, would remain neutral . None of them wants war and also Switzerland and other countries. "

"At this point in the conversation - reports the Argentine diplomat - Hitler spoke with violent demonstrative emphasis of his annoyance against the United States of America and especially its President. He was surprised and with some bitterness about the fact that Franklin Roosevelt had not answered his last speech before the Reichstag . " And he said: "I don't understand how he didn't answer me; I expected him; I wanted to keep a long controversy with him. I don't understand." "He was thoughtful," Labougle observed. "They went through his mind, no doubt, in droves, the series of arguments or reasons he would have been elucidating since his retirement on Bertchtesgaden Hill. I was staring at him, well, I had the impression that in through the heyday of his glory and his might, the silence of his great opponent, has provided him with hours of disappointment and bitterness. "

When he resumed the thread of the conversation, Hitler drew a negative vision about Roosevelt and his relationship with the Jews and the American press during a long presentation. He raised his voice and said: " The United States is the most poorly governed country in the world and Roosevelt is one of the worst rulers! "


María Susana Pearson de Labougle at the Brandenburg Gate

When the issue began to decline, the Argentine ambassador commented: "Hitler told me slowly: In Britain they believe me a pedantic (S chwadroneur ), brag , although I have demonstrated many times that my demonstrations have been made with all seriousness. On the contrary, it is the English who have very large mouths. I know the English very well: for months I have fought them during the war against each other. Only when they were presented in a proportion of 1 to 10 could they have registered, perhaps, a success ... the English soldier can do nothing against the German soldier . "

He then looked down on aviation in the United Kingdom and said: "I don't fear your fleet." "Even if there are fundamental reasons for a conflict with England, the German demand for the return of its colonies remains and will be realized if it is not for the good times it will be for the bad ones ... There will only be peace when the others consider the vital conditions of the people German, consenting to everything he can claim from his right . " Labougle noted in his report: "This last sentence was said judiciously; as if responding to a firm and categorical resolution, which cannot admit arguments."

Then they got up: " When I shook my hand tightly, with a cordial and smiling gesture, he told me that he hoped to return to Germany , I had lived during a momentous time and would see what they will do in the near future." Fate wanted Labougle to be again an ambassador to Germany in 1956, chaired by Konrad Adenauer , with the government of the Liberating Revolution and Germany was in ruins and Hitler had committed suicide on April 30, 1945. At the end, Hitler gave him , as was his custom, a signed photo, which decades later I could observe.

Marshal Göring, the second most important man at the time, invited him to his Carinhall , his majestic residence, near Berlin. At the beginning of the conversation, Labougle thanked him for his "personal influence in deciding the authorities to acquire an annual contingent of cold cuts." I buy them all that can sell us, "the Reichsmarschall told him.

Then the dialogue slipped towards Chile, the next destination of the Argentine diplomat, and Göering began to talk about races, Germanism and the maintenance of its purity. With the frankness of many years of treatment, Göring was able to tell him, in a section of the conversation, without need: " Yes, but the Argentines do not constitute a race; it is a mixture; they are a nationality ."

Ambassador Eduardo Lablougle was replaced, until 1942, by Ambassador Ricardo Olivera (later Ambassador to the Vichy government, occupied France). He was later appointed as Business Manager (AI) Luis Luti, until relations were broken in 1944.