Is this picture the proof conspiracy theorists have sought for so long that Adolf Hitler did not die in that Berlin bunker in 1945 but in fact lived well into old age halfway across the world?
According to writer and investigator Simoni Renee Guerreiro Dias, author of Hitler in Brazil – His Life and His Death, the architect of the Third Reich lived in the small town of Nossa Senhora do Livramento in the state of Mato Grosso in Brazil, having initially fled Germany to Paraguay.
A Brazilian Jew, Simoni claims to have come across the proof of Hitler’s presence in the town while hunting for buried treasure in the area using maps given to him by The Vatican (yes, I know – this sounds like the premise for an Indiana Jones film, but hey sometimes life is as quaint as fiction).
According to the story, the Fuhrer assumed the name “Adolf Leipzig”; the intriguing figure in the photograph is claimed to be Adolf “Leipzig” posing with his girlfriend, a local woman named ‘Cutinga’, two years before his natural death from old age in 1984 – which would be some forty years after the end of World War II and Hitler’s ‘official’ date of death.
The enduring tales have it that Hitler lived comfortably in this town for many years (reaching the age of 95) and was known to locals simply as “the Old German”.
Of course the legends of Hitler’s survival are no new thing and in fact were surfacing mere days after the official report of his and Eva Braun’s suicide in April 1945; since that point the stories have continued for all the decades since, becoming a primary staple of conspiracy theory lore.
While by no means decisive, the various evidences cited over the years to suggest Hitler’s survival are rather strong.
This being said, some of those theories were, even at a relatively early stage, taking on increasingly exotic properties such as secret North Pole bases, the famous “Hollow Earth” stories and so on. Which I’m not entirely dismissing here; but it suits us better not to explore that lore right now.
However, the likeliest idea was simply, as Simoni’s picture implies, that he escaped into South America – a feat demonstrably accomplished by both Adolf Eichmann and the “Doctor of Death” Josef Mengele.
Or of course he may have simply died in that bunker in Berlin, as mainstream history insists. As for the photograph above, it has to be said that the image is very grainy, particularly in terms of the face, and is therefore very difficult to judge.
It does, in terms of shape and profile, bear a very striking resemblance to Adolf Hitler; but if it’s a fake, that degree of resemblance would of course be its primary objective.
There were always curiosities and inconsistencies in the official story of Hitler’s death, from the speed of the cremation, the lack of German witnesses, the inconsistency of statements issued by those claiming to have witnessed Hitler’s and Braun’s dead bodies, to curious statements issued by the likes of Josef Stalin and American President Dwight Eisenhower, among others.
While the official version of Hitler’s death isn’t as plainly obvious a falsehood as, say, the official version of the JFK assassination, it nevertheless contains enough intrigue and uncertainty so as to ensure it a permanent place in conspiracy theory lore.
Simoni has been adamantly requesting that Mr “Leipzig’s” remains be exhumed so that his DNA can be tested against living relatives of the infamous Nazi dictator.
I would argue that this is a sensible move: if Leipzig’s remains aren’t tested in the manner Simoni suggests, his theory will remain impossible to dismiss or invalidate. Then again, it’s probably unlikely any surviving Hitler relatives would be keen to be dragged into such a process: or to be subject to unwanted publicity.
This photo, while fascinating, is by no means decisive.
But if Adolf Hitler did survive the war and live into the 1980s, it would represent one of the most fascinating untold stories of the 20th century.