True confessions of a Nazi scientist in a Commie gulag

From the September, 1955 issue of Mechanix Illustrated, this account ("I Was a Slave Scientist in Russia") of the life of the Nazi scientists who were taken to the Soviet Union (for comparison, the Nazis who came to the US were given perks like lecture tours and parts in Disney educational films):

I also like George N. from Er. He is the oldest of us and gives an impression of calm. He tells us how he had offered to develop an ultrasonic apparatus for fighting cancer for the Russians. His plans interest me and I tell him I am an ultrasonic expert. “Then you are certainly assigned to the project,” he says and I realize that my words at the examination at Bautzen have sealed my fate.

“How long in your opinion do we need to finish it?” I ask George N. I am no doctor but from my professional experiences I know that ultrasonic medicine is still in its infancy and there is nothing certain as to what will come from it. At least it is clear to me that the cancer project is a difficult and extensive task. George, on the contrary, calculates that we will finish it in two years. As I express doubts, he refers to his horoscope which forecasts a two-year stay in a foreign country and then freedom. From this moment onward I cannot believe that he is a scientist.



  1. I wonder where the camps will be built after the Burning of Los Angeles? You’ll all keep in touch?

  2. Anyone ever see the Richard Stanley movie “Dust Devil”? As it turns out, anyone who ‘incorrectly’ pulls an evil demon out of someone possessed, gets possessed by it. I suppose only history will decide who removed the evil from Germany correctly and who got tainted.

  3. Solzhenytsin’s “The First Circle” is in part about (Russian) scientists in the GULAG, who were put to work on various experimental technologies. The title refers to the first circle of Hell, where existence is not as painful as in the lower circles (of course if the authorities found you useful, you might end up in prison for far longer).

  4. The issue is not whether scientists were treated badly in Stalin’s gulags, but whether it’s OK to overlook scientists’ complicity in the use of slave labour, indeed their dependence on it to carry out their rocketry development programs, and to furthermore lavish rewards and status on those scientists because they can build you a new range of weapons. Which is exactly what the USA did for Werner von Braun and his colleagues, Nazis to a man. Disgusting hypocrisy.

  5. What’s really interesting is that while Russia has opened all their files on the use of Nazi war criminals during the cold war, America is still keeps their files classified to this day allowing war criminals that worked for the US to escape prosecution.

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