A Nazi war criminal’s diary missing since 1946 is now in possession of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, which is making it available online for researchers to study.
Written by a close confidant of Adolf Hitler’s, Alfred Rosenberg, the diary went missing after the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials.
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Rosenberg, who was put to death with other war criminals in 1946, was responsible for “racist theories” in the Nazi party that resulted in the death of 6 million Jews and another 5 million people.
The Holocaust museum said on its website that the 400-page diary
was kept by a Nuremberg prosecutor, Robert Kempner, after the trials. The museum said Kempner received permission to take unclassified documents for lecturing and research purposes, but Agence France-Presse reported
the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency said he took the diary “contrary to law and proper procedure.”
When Kempner died in 1993, relatives turned his collection of Holocaust paperwork over to the museum but officials quickly found out the diary wasn’t there, the museum website said. Working with the FBI and other government agencies, as well as a private investigator, the museum searched for the diary. Homeland Security located it at an upstate New York company this year. It was held by ICE and turned over to the museum Tuesday.
"Today that search ends. It’s in its proper home," said museum director Sara Bloomfield, speaking at an event transferring the diary to the museum, AFP reported.
Some pieces are missing from the diary, Juergen Matthaeus of the museum's Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies told AFP, pointing out that a section is missing from 1942.
The diary serves to document the Holocaust and shed light on the thinking behind the atrocities committed by the Nazis.
"This is more a piece of a huge puzzle with many pieces that all need to be brought together," Matthaeus said.
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