Sunday, June 03, 2007

New book details Hitler plot to kidnap pope, foiled by Nazi general

New book details Hitler plot to kidnap pope, foiled by Nazi general

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- An SS general close to Adolf Hitler foiled a plot to kidnap Pope Pius XII during World War II and to put the Vatican and its treasures under Nazi control, according to a new book. The book, "A Special Mission" by Dan Kurzman, refutes arguments that Pope Pius XII maintained a public silence about Nazi actions during World War II because he was anti-Semitic or because he was sympathetic toward Hitler. "They were bitter, bitter enemies. They despised each other," said Kurzman of the pontiff and the fuhrer in a May 31 telephone interview with Catholic News Service. The pope hated Hitler "not only for his inhumanity but because he threatened the whole church structure." Hitler, for his part, "saw the pope as his greatest enemy" and as someone with whom he was "competing for the minds and souls that he wanted to control," the author added. Kurzman also said he found no evidence that Pope Pius was anti-Semitic, noting that one of his closest childhood friends was a Jewish boy with whom he remained in contact throughout his life. The book, published June 1 by Da Capo Press in Cambridge, Mass., is subtitled "Hitler's Secret Plot to Seize the Vatican and Kidnap Pope Pius XII." It details the actions of SS Gen. Karl Wolff, chief of staff to SS Chief Heinrich Himmler, in the months after the overthrow of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini in July 1943.


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Catholic and politically conservative, I graduated with a BA in History (concentration in American) and Political Science. I'm between two parishes; one in Wisconsin that is fairly traditional, and one in Illinois that is fairly liberal. I teach CCD. I work in the food service industry, which basically means I'm working in fast food until I find a better job. I'd like to work for the church somehow. Right now I'm working on getting my teaching certification, although I'm unsure thats the correct path for me. This blog is as random as I am. I hope you enjoy.