Conspiracy theories about Adolf Hitler's death
Conspiracy theories about Adolf Hitler's death contradict the majority view that Adolf Hitler committed suicide in his Berlin Führerbunker on 30 April 1945. Most of these theories hold that Hitler and his wife, Eva Braun, survived and escaped Berlin.
Declassified FBI documents contain a number of alleged sightings of Hitler along with conspiracy theories of his escape from Germany. The FBI state that information within those documents pertaining to the escape and sightings of Hitler cannot be verified.
A skull fragment with a bullet-hole, found outside Hitler’s bunker and kept in Russia’s federal archives in Moscow, was for decades believed to be that of Hitler. However, in 2009 samples of the skull were DNA-tested at the University of Connecticut by archaeologist and bone specialist Nick Bellantoni and colleagues. It was found to be that of a woman aged under 40.
However, the Russians have never claimed that the skull was the main evidence, instead citing jawbone fragments and a dental bridge which were found. The items were shown to Käthe Heusermann, the long time dental assistant of Hitler's dentist, Hugo Blaschke, and long time technician Fritz Echtmann who both identified them as being Hitler's. The skull fragment was found only later, in 1946, when the Soviets investigated rumours of Hitler’s survival.
Alleged escape to Argentina
Grey Wolf: The Escape of Adolf Hitler, by British authors Simon Dunstan and Gerrard Williams, proposes that Hitler and Braun did not commit suicide, but escaped to Argentina. According to the book, Hitler crossed the Andes Mountain before arriving in Argentina. He then lived in hiding at Hacienda San Ramón, six miles (10 km) east of San Carlos de Bariloche, until the early 1960s.
The theory that Hitler escaped to Argentina has been widely dismissed by historians, who believe that Hitler and Braun died in the last days of World War II in Europe. Historian Guy Walters described the theory as "2,000 per cent rubbish" when the Dunstan and Williams' book was published. Walters added: "It's an absolute disgrace. There's no substance to it at all. It appeals to the deluded fantasies of conspiracy theorists and has no place whatsoever in historical research."
- "FBI — Adolf Hitler Part 01 of 04 - File No 105-410". vault.fbi.gov. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
- Adolf Hitler suicide story questioned after tests reveal skull is a woman's, Andrew Osborn, 28 Sep 2009
- Kershaw, Ian (2008). Hitler: A Biography, p. 958. ISBN 978-0-393-06757-6.
- Walters, Guy (28 October 2013). "Did Hitler flee bunker with Eva to Argentina, have two daughters and live to 73? The bizarre theory that's landed two British authors in a bitter war". Mail Online (London: The Daily Mail). Retrieved 28 May 2014.
- Dewsbury, Rick; Hall, Allan; Harding, Elanor (18 October 2011). "Did Hitler and Eva Braun flee Berlin and die (divorced) of old age in Argentina?". Mail Online (London: The Daily Mail). Retrieved 28 May 2014.
- Harding, Anna (25 January 2014). "New book claims THIS picture proves Hitler escaped his Berlin bunker and died in South America in 1984 aged 95". Mail Online (London: The Daily Mail). Retrieved 28 May 2014.