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Q: Kurt Jahnke - German spy & saboteur ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Kurt Jahnke - German spy & saboteur
Category: Reference, Education and News > General Reference
Asked by: probonopublico-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 16 Jun 2002 22:30 PDT
Expires: 16 Jun 2003 22:30 PDT
Question ID: 27748
Kurt Jahnke was an important German spy and saboteur who operated in
the United States and Mexico during WW1. During WW2, he operated
mainly from Berlin and from his estate in Pomerania. There is evidence
(obtained from Moscow) that he was captured and interrogated by the
Russians in April 1945 and executed in May.

However, there is another story that says he escaped capture and,
after WW2, he lived in Switzerland and, supposedly, there is a CIA
report to this effect.

Can anyone throw any light on what really happened to Jahnke?
Subject: Re: Kurt Jahnke - German spy & saboteur
Answered By: xemion-ga on 16 Jun 2002 23:02 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
The following quote comes from a 1998 Associated Press article:
"The Russians captured Jahnke, who spied for Germany through the
1930s, and his wife at their home in Germany in 1945 and turned
them over to the Soviet counterespionage organization Smersh, which
means ``Death to Spies,'' said Van Wyk. He said they were
interrogated, tortured and executed."

There is a similiar article here:

In my searches, there was not any mention of a CIA report or of him
escaping capture.  I did a search at the CIA website for any
declassified documents containing the phrase "kurt jahnke".  Had there
been a CIA report, I'm sure it would have been in the database.  The
database goes back to 1940.  I don't think it includes all CIA
material but the website is not very clear on that. It looks like to
me that the report does not exist.  For reference, the CIA search page

The Russian documents state that he was executed.  Considering these
documents are the only source of information available on Jahnke, your
options are believe it or not believe it.  You may also want to take
into consideration the name of the Russian organization, Smersh or
"death to spies" in English.  If they say they killed the spies, I
would assume they're telling the truth.

I used the below search terms on Google and the CIA website:
"Kurt Jahnke" executed
"Kurt Jahnke" cia
"Kurt Jahnke"

Thanks for the question and if you require more information, don't
hesitate to ask for clarification.  And if you find this answer
satisfactory, please feel free to rate it. Thank you!

Request for Answer Clarification by probonopublico-ga on 17 Jun 2002 02:36 PDT

Many thanks for your fast submission ... I rather doubt the CIA story
but, maybe, somebody else can throw further light on the question.

Clarification of Answer by xemion-ga on 17 Jun 2002 07:14 PDT
Ok.  Sounds good.

probonopublico-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
On further reflection, you did answer the question I asked even though
it was not the answer I was seeking. My fault! I shall now re-phrase
my question.

There are no comments at this time.

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