Hitler Tried to Keep Us Out of War

Westbrook Pegler

El Paso Herald-Post/March 23, 1962

NEW YORK. — An American lawyer who interviewed Rudolf Hess at Spandau Prison, Berlin, in 1947, said the other day that Hess informed him his mission on his parachute drop into Scotland in May, 1941, was to transmit an offer of peace from Hitler to Churchill. Thus Hitler would have taken Great Britain out of the war and frustrated Franklin Roosevelt’s determination to throw us into it. Hitler had shrewdly refrained from creating a legal excuse for Roosevelt to make war on Germany.

Roosevelt even sent a pro-Communist ambassador to Berlin, a seedy pedagogue named William E. Dodd, whose daughter with her husband defected to the far side of the Iron Curtain a few years ago. True, Germany was raucous and spied on us, but German Communists had waged bloody civil war in Germany and American Communists flaunted the American passport in Germany for protection.

Rudolf Hess was second in Hitler’s political machine. In this status he flew to Scotland and dropped by chute. There are inexcusable defects, including lies, in the historic account of this. Churchill has written thousands of pages, but not about Hess.

Robert E. Sherwood, a playwright, wrote an idolatrous account of the joint war career of Roosevelt and Harry Hopkins, including a version of the Hess matter so weak and loose that a decent city editor might have thrown him out for payola.

Sherwood would have had us believe that Roosevelt never did insist on knowing Hess’s mission when all Roosevelt had to do was phone Churchill. But any admission by Sherwood that Hess offered peace to Britain would only prove that Roosevelt was determined to throw his country into war to save Russia.

My informant is Robert M. Donihi, formerly of our State Department, later a staff lawyer in the Nuremberg “war crimes” trials and occasional political candidate. He is legislative assistant to Senator Winston L. Prouty of Vermont in Washington.

Commenting on my discussion of the Hess thing, Donihi wrote a mutual friend: “Pegler is quite right. Hitler and Hess concluded that there was no chance of whipping the Soviets if the United States were to come into the war. They thought Hess might have contacts in England to influence Germany into an attractive separate peace. Roosevelt could get away with a war to help Britain but he knew he couldn’t persuade Congress to declare war on Germany just to help Russia alone.”

Hess told Donihi he never was given an opportunity to meet high echelon persons in England. “Churchill,” says Donihi, “referred to him as ‘the mad Hun’ without ever talking to him. The man who replaced Hess as No. 2 Nazi was, and is, Martin Bormann. He had been Hess’s private secretary.

Mr. Donihi explained that as a pro-Soviet Communist planted in Hitler’s inner circle, Bormann relied on other Communist agents in England and other countries to discredit Hess. Then Bormann would become Hitler’s first lieutenant in Berlin, doing an inside job for Stalin. Bormann has been “missing” since the fall of Berlin. Donihi thinks he is in Russia.

After Hess got life in solitary in the “war crimes” trials, Donihi continued to nag at the mystery. Hess’s “offense” was not a “war crime” except to Russia. Donihi believes he is the last American to see Hess whose defense he had assisted in the trial. After 1947, the Russians prevented further interrogation of Hess.

“Hess,” Donihi said, “told me the entire story of his flight, the reasons for it, circumstances, etc.”

Donihi insists that, contrary to common superstition, Hess had a military pilot who flew back to Germany after the jump.

Be it remembered that when Hess jumped, Hitler and Stalin were still honeymooning, only a month before Hitler jumped the Russians in a crazy gamble to beat Stalin before Roosevelt could drag the Germans off Russia’s back.

The Duke of Windsor had tried to maneuver Britain out of the war. He had no use for Hitler, but no more for Stalin, and like many Americans he wanted a head-on scrap between those two. Like most British and Americans of impartial intelligence, he regarded Hitler and Mussolini as short-term fools. He was right.

Instead, Roosevelt made naval war on Germany in the North Atlantic and threw his country into the holocaust.

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