Rudolf Hess's flight to Britain in May 1941 is one of the most extraordinary mysteries of the Second World War and the subject of many books. Now acclaimed historian Peter Padfield, after years of research amongst newly released documents and interviews with informants who have never before spoken of their part in the affair, provides the most complete and accurate explanation of the Deputy Fuhrer's flight to this country.
It reveals that:
Hess was lured to Britain in an MI6 'sting' operation involving top-level British diplomats, with the knowledge of Winston Churchill.
Hess came on a deniable mission with the full knowledge of Hitler and Nazi ministers.
His reception party in this country probably included the Duke of Kent.
He brought documents with him that were concealed at the time - even from members of the government and Foreign Office - and which remain closed to the public.
These documents included a peace proposal typed in numbered clauses on Chancellery paper offering withdrawal of German forces from western occupied Europe if Britain would allow Germany a free hand in eastern Europe.
They detailed Hitler's plans for the conquest of Russia and extermination of Bolshevism; and according to the account of an informant who learned of it from a Guards officer who questioned Hess, they specified the deportation of Jews - to save them from planned liquidation..
If these terms had become known - and not agreed because Hitler could not be trusted - it would have been catastrophic for ritain's relations with America, the Jewish community and the heads of the exiled European governments in London.
It would also have meant open season on Churchill for the very powerful British interests campaigning for a 'compromise peace.'
The explosive nature of these proposals ensured that they were buried at the time; the fact that after seventy years they remain hidden is proof of a continuing cover-up, presumably on account of their sensitivity in relation to the 'holocaust' and the image of Churchill's conduct in the Second World War.
Hess's death in Spandau gaol, Berlin, was certainly not suicide, but murder; naturally, this is also under official wraps
Peter Padfield was born in 1932 and educated at Christ's Hospital. After service as a navigating officer in P&O liners, he gained a berth as a mariner aboard the replica seventeenth century Mayflower on her recreation of the Pilgrim Fathers' voyage and later panned for gold in the disused gold mines on Guadalcanal. He described his time in the Pacific and the Mayflower voyage in his first book The Sea is a Magic Carpet.Returning to Britain, he worked in nautical journalism and in manufacturing industry until the international success of The Titanic and the Californian encou...
More about Peter Padfield