Nazi hunter  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

A Nazi-hunter is an individual who tracks down and gathers information on former Nazis and SS members who were involved in the Holocaust so that they can be punished for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

With the onset of the Cold War following World War II, both the Western Allies, and the Communist USSR made use of former Nazi scientists and operatives for their own motives (e.g., Operation Paperclip). Cooperative Nazis were occasionally given state protection in return for valuable information or services (e.g., Wernher von Braun or Reinhard Gehlen, chief of the German Bundesnachrichtendienst secret agency and founder of the Gehlen Org and co-founder of the ODESSA network, which helped exfiltrate Nazi criminals). Private Nazi-hunters therefore sought out fugitives on their own, some of whom were hiding out in lands far from Europe, such as Latin America.

In later years, with pressure from activists, there was greater cooperation with Western governments, as well as Israel. The activity necessarily declined by the end of the 20th century as most of the generation active in Nazi leadership during the Holocaust have died out or reached extreme old age.

Some known Nazi-hunters are Simon Wiesenthal, Tuviah Friedman, Serge and Beate Klarsfeld, Yaron Svoray, Elliot Welles, Michel Thomas, and Efraim Zuroff.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Nazi hunter" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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