July 22, 1997
WHERE'S THE GOLD?!
Where did all that money go? Apparently not just to Swiss banks.
When the Nazis and their allies plundered the bank accounts of Jews and others murdered during the Holocaust, a large amount of the money ended up in a surprising place -- the vaults of the Vatican in Rome.
A document that was classified for 50 years now reveals that the rulers of the Nazi puppet government in Croatia "deposited" 200 million Swiss francs at the Vatican. The looted money, mostly gold coins, would be worth about $170 million in US dollars today.
During World War II, Croatia was ruled by the Ustashas, who were responsible for killing hundreds of thousands of Serbs, Jews, and Gypsies. The regime was led by Ante Pavelic, who maintained ties to the Vatican during the war. A Croatian cardinal was convicted of aiding the war criminals by Croatia's post-war government.
No one seems to know exactly what happened to the money. It's possible that Pavelic and company used the Vatican pipeline to send the money to Spain and Argentina, where many of Croatia's ex-rulers sought refuge after the war. It's also possible the money is still in the Vatican's vaults.
The Vatican denied the accusation, calling the source anonymous and unreliable. However, a number of researchers have vouched for the authenticity of the formerly-secret document which contains the basis for the accusations.
(Source: Washington Post.)
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