Behind the Bastards

There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.

Part One: The Nazi Pedophile Cult Leader who Murdered Santa (With Paul F. Tompkins)

Part One: The Nazi Pedophile Cult Leader who Murdered Santa (With Paul F. Tompkins)

Tue, 26 Oct 2021 10:00

Robert is joined by Paul F. Tompkins to discuss Nazi Cult Leader, Paul Schäfer.



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Wow, that is quite a story. And the FBI is still looking for you, huh? Yeah, and it's like, I'm easy to find. I don't know. I mean, you are right there right here, right now. Ohh, good time. Oh my goodness. I didn't notice you all come in. I was just chatting with my friend Paul left. Tompkins. Paul, get carried away. The the audience is here. What? Oh, hi, guys. How are you all doing? I hope 2020 once treated you well. This is behind the ******** a podcast about the worst people in all of history. And today, Paul, I thought I might have you on, along with all of our friends here to talk about how do you let me. Let me start with this simple question. Paul, how do you feel about Nazis? Ooh, I gotta say, and I hope this is not uncool, but not a fan, not a fan, not a fan of Nazis. OK, now, ancillary question, Paul, do you dislike either chocolate or peanut butter, but like Reese's Peanut Butter cups? I'm going to say I like them both individually and in the combination. OK? Yeah, interesting. Is there anything that in combination you like, but alone you don't like? Yeah, there are certain tastes like orange or tomato. Yeah, I like them in different forms, but I don't like them as their own thing. That's OK. So this is kind of like that maybe maybe because we've got a Nazi, right? Don't like Nazis, but he's also a cult leader and a torturer for the Chilean government and a pedophile. I don't actually think you're going to like all those things in combination now that now that I read it out. Let me tell you something. If a pedophile was turning a corner and ran into a torturer for the Chilean government and they became the same thing, I wouldn't think it was a great taste that went that tastes good, that tasted Better Together, that mash up. If it's the if, it's the pedophile truck hitting the Chilean torturer truck hitting the Nazi truck. That doesn't make a good mix. I would like to see those trucks hit each other though. I would be fun to see those trucks hit each other. Yeah, I actually think I would enjoy seeing them collide, but not not merge their skills anyway. This has been a tortured way of introducing the tale of a guy named Paul Shaffer. Have you ever heard of Paul Shaffer? That Letterman, not not the Letterman guy. I have to say the Letterman guy. This might be the most unfortunate person other than Hitler to share a name with spelled completely different. It's such an unfortunate thing when that happens. Yeah, it's it's really not great speaking as a Robert Evans. But my Robert Evans just made godfather. I mean, probably had a couple of people tortured, right? It was Hollywood and like the 70s. Emotionally for sure. Emotionally for certain. Yeah. I mean, didn't he work with Kubrick? Right? Like, yeah. So on January 4th, 1985, an American mathematics professor named Boris Weisweiler was hiking in the Andean foothills in Chile. Boris was the son of a Jewish scientist who'd been forced to flee Nazi Germany in the 1930s in order to, you know, not get murdered. His sister still lived in the Soviet Union. Boris was an American citizen, though, and that his disappearance that night would mark him out as the only U.S. citizen who was disappeared by the regime of dictator Augusto Pinochet. So Boris Weisweiler now, as best we can tell, a local that Weisweiler met noticed that he he was wearing an old backpack that he'd taken with him from Russia that had Cyrillic letters on it, and he was dressed in khaki pants and under Pinochet, communism. Not a not good, not not big fans of communism, so this local sees he's got Cyrillic writing on his backpack turns him into the state authorities, who turned him over, not to a government agency, but to a group of German nationals who lived in a nearby. Holt compound and specialized in torture for the Pinochet regime, as well as making Bratwurst. Boris was tortured horribly for an unknown period of time before being shot in the head and dumped into a mass grave. I shouldn't have had that right after the Bratwurst line. Roberts is part of life. It it is, especially for these guys. Exactly. Now, while Boris's father had succeeded in escaping the Nazis, Boris was not so lucky because the German nationals who carried out his torture and execution were led by a charismatic Nazi apocalypse preacher named Paul Schaefer. It is entirely possible that when the time came, Paul himself pulled the trigger. And that's that's our little introduction to what we're talking about today. Are you? Are you pumped, Paul? My appetite has been whetted. Yeah, it's like the mention of Broadhurst has done. I could go for some Bratwurst. One thing that's fun about this week, Paul, is we're talking about a ******* who shares your first name, and the episode I'm writing this week is a ******* who shares my first name. We're talking about I'm writing an episode about Robert Baden Powell of the Boy Scouts. You know the Boy Scouts have been up to some ****** ** **** when in the middle of a discussion of Nazi pedophile torturers, you mentioned them and go. Yeah, what a monster. Mash for this Halloween season. Yeah, tis the season, Paul. Paul Schaefer Schneider was born in the town of Siegburg on December 4th, 1921. Or he was born in born. It's also possible he was born in the small town of Troisdorf near the Dutch German border. I think all these towns are kind of near each other, as you might guess from the fact that credible sources have all provided me with three different birth places for the man. There's some mixed up facts about his early life. You know, some some stuff happened in Germany about 20 years after he was born that made record keeping less than ideal in parts of the country. Due to sale, shall we say, spontaneous fires. So yeah, he was born somewhere near that Dutch German border area. We don't know a tremendous amount about his early life. He seems to have been a very poor student and quite clumsy. The reason we know this is because we have one clear story from his childhood, and it's that while he was a preteen, he was attempting to untie his shoelaces with a fork. He screwed up, and he gouged out his own right eye. I mean, the physics of it. I know, right? You're working through it in your head right now, trying to figure out how you'd do it. Like if this was a sketch, how do you even fake that? Did had he had a rib removed? Usually that's for another purpose. I mean, that is, wow, that's a real go getter. That's an I'm. I'm not a coordinated man, but that is a fascinating act of of discoordination. It's it's the antithesis of parkour. So when he was 12, Adolf Hitler became Chancellor of Germany. And since Paul was the sort of young man who was dumb enough to gouge out his own eye while untying his shoe, he really liked the Nazis. Big, big Hitler fan from an early age, probably tied to the fact that he was not competent to untie his own shoe without serious injury. In 1939, on the eve of World War Two, Paul tried to join the elite should Stoffel or s s. They rejected him because he was missing an eye. Yeah, Brady, you're too dumb for the s s. You can't. I mean, look, if you're if you're talking about an elite force of the master race, you can't have a one eyed guy in there. No, no. Unless he lost it in a cool way. Exactly. Yeah, but you're somebody's gonna ask. Eventually somebody's gonna ask, and you're gonna say, well, so you know how your shoes get really tight. And you know forks. You know forks. Those tricky ********. Really, they're the Jews of the silverware world. Ohh Nazis. So Paul was enthusiastic about Nazism still, and he joined either the Army or the Air Force. I've heard different explanations of this too. I think it's most likely he joined to the Vermont because he is so he. He worked as a nurse, some sources will say medic. I think they were kind of the same basic gig at that time in a field hospital in occupied France throughout the war, which is one of the better jobs you could have in the German army, right? The nightmare is being sent E. Being stationed in France is like that. That's that's really where you want to be. He he ended World War Two as a corporal without a particularly exciting war experience. Corporal is also the same rank Adolf Hitler attained in World War One, which may have brought Paul some comfort as he prepared to endure several horrible years if everyone around him pretending they had not been Nazis for a while. I know. Awkward parties. That must be tough, you know? What did you get up to? Yeah, people are trying to pin down times and dates. Yeah, locations. Yeah, I was at school, I think. Yeah, because working on my degree. I've been rebuilding a classic car. I've used hot air balloon trying to break a record. Around the field in 17 years or so. So Paul had not again. When the war ends, we tried to punish some of the Nazis. Paul's a corporal who worked at in a field hospital. Nobody's after this guy, right? You'll hear people be like he was hiding from the allies. I don't think the allies were looking for corporals who worked in field hospitals, like, and I've never heard any allegations he was involved in any war crimes, which I'm not saying. Obviously to defend him. He would have absolutely done a war crime if he could have. I don't think the Nazis thought he was competent enough to do war cracks. We gotta keep this guy away from the war crimes. Got it working. Just so whatever you do, don't let shaper in here. This **** is a well oiled machine. Don't let Fork Gray do it. The Gomer Pyle of the Third Reich. So yeah, he he becomes a Lutheran pastor after the war, and he's hired to be a young peoples leader at the Evangelical Free Church, where he preached the gospel and told boys how good it was to be abstinent. Now, that's a red flag to me. Some people are fine with that. I think if you're an adult and you decide to make it your job to tell teenage boys how bad sex is, you there might be something questionable. About you. Yeah. I mean, it's like girl, having grown up in religion, that's just par for the course. It's like it's always a part of everything. But if you say I wanna focus on that. Mm-hmm. I think that you have to be a little concerned. Yeah, there's there's probably something, something up there. And there was with Paul, because not locked and long into his gig, people at the church started to, to suspect that he had mistreated some of the boys in his care. And you don't get more details on than that. In this instance. We can guess what he was doing because of the stuff that came out later, although. Just knowing the way, again, this guy's a pedophile on an industrial scale. I don't actually know if he'd started fully molesting them. It may have been because people often take time to like build up. He may have just been kind of like a little bit like inappropriate touching and stuff. He may have like not built up to that. At this point we really don't know. The rumors are treat. I mean usually like if like they'll say something specific, if they can say a specific thing, but when it gets too grim, that's when the, the, the, the euphemisms come out. Yeah, exactly. So we don't know. How bad it was at this stage. But the rumors about him were vague enough that there were no criminal charges filed. Although he was forced out of the free Church now, he had a lot of fans even at this point. He's a very charismatic guy, and so there were a lot of adults at the free church who were like, really surprised that he gets fired and still really liked him, one woman who knew him at the time later told a documentarian quote after Schaefer was fired. He lived for a while in the forest. He said he had a direct encounter with Jesus there and that Jesus had chosen him for a mission. Founding something like a community of true Christians. So already, I mean, we've had a few red flag, being a Nazi red flag. Number one, I feel like, let's say I'm out in the forest and Jesus appears to me and says he's got a mission for me. Yeah, let's say that ball. I have to think back on all the people who have said similar things. And how successful were those missions? Yeah. How good. How, how often do those missions not end this? Nightmares? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Well, so Jesus, like, had his mission. Mission accomplished. Yeah. And then he was like, I'll come back when I'm ready, when I'm done. You know, he never said anything about. And here and there, I'm gonna give you guys assignments. I mean, to be honest, what I respect about Jesus is the same thing that I respect about the Zemeckis brothers, where you do 1 great thing and you're like, you know what? I don't need to do anymore of these, like, we don't need to come back. We don't need to reboot back to the future. We're good. We're good. Like, I don't need to. We don't need a second coming. I'm. I I got it. Right. That's why we call Jesus the Marty McFly of Religion. Yes, if people were wondering if people were wondering. So he goes into the woods. God tells him to create a community of true Christian believers, and so he becomes a roving Lutheran pastor. And he spends the next several years traveling the countryside dressed in lederhosen, playing acoustic guitar and singing songs to kids about how awesome abstinence is. Oh boy. Couple of flags there. I mean, even back then, when a priest brings out the guitar, this is such a drag. Hmm. I don't know. I was a kid. I I didn't like the guitar mass. I liked the really old stuff. I like the old hymns. I like the olds. There's gravity. Oregon. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, yeah, yeah. But the tarmac is like, what do you. I I can get this somewhere else. What are you here doing this for? Yeah, I don't need that. The only guitar based religious music I want is that one. Peter, Paul and Mary Christmas concert. Great album, exactly, although Speaking of people with troubling histories involving children. I I was not aware, but it was either Peter or Paul, I think. Yeah, anyway, whatever. We're really racking them up today. Yeah. So I mean, you've got a Nazi who gets kicked out of his first church job for mistreating boys and then decides to form a community of true believers by wandering the woods and playing acoustic guitar for children about how good it is not to have sex already. Also wearing tight leather pants the whole time. More red flags than a Communist Party rally at this point. Like, just just a lot of them. That said, this is also the 40s and 50s. People are not as suspicious about such things. Like there's I think probably most people don't even really understand that that's possible, that, like a man could do that to a child, which is why a lot of this is, you know, able to happen. Paul develops a following, and at prayer meetings, he would encourage his listeners to come up and confess their sins. Over years on the road, he honed his craft and he became an exceptional public speaker. Skill augmented his natural charisma and is hard to imagine as it is to imagine. He must have had natural charisma. There's a good documentary. It's a German language documentary, but it's on Netflix called Colonia. That's about Paul Shaffer and everything we're talking about today. There's some audio of him from this. He sounds like Hitler. And I'm not saying that because, like, oh, all German men sound like it. No, he. I don't speak German. I have listened to a lot of Hitler speeches with the subtitles on the cadence of his voice is hitlerian and other Germans will say he he spoke. And I don't even know if it was conscious. This is a kid who grows up during Hitler's rise to power. It that may just have been how we internalized. This is how you speak to a crowd, you know. But he has that kind of speaking skill, and it has an effect on people. He he draws together hundreds of very dedicated followers over the course of a couple of years. One follower who first. First met him at a prayer meeting in 1952. Said that he was so charming that charisma radiated out of his body like beams of light. And this is what I. But it's the same thing with like, anytime I hear this about somebody, somebody who's a who's a leader of of some kind of cult, whether it's a religious cult or Hitler or whatever, there's always this thing where people say, like, he just transfixed people. He was just couldn't look away. And then you see this person, you're like this dude, this guy, people, this ************. Whenever I see, like, I, I can understand, I guess on some level that like Hitler got people all worked up. He tapped into the, the, the defeated. Aspect of the German people and it was like, yeah, guess what, you're not defeated. We're the greatest in the world. And I could see how you he could cast a spell on someone, but the it's the charisma thing that always throws me. They never seem charismatic when I see them. I think part of it is because charisma is so dependent upon the audience, right? There are, it's like with there's people who absolutely love Beyoncé obviously she's huge, a massive, massive, massive. There are millions of people are drawn to her. I don't. I don't care one way or the other about her. Like I'm not. That's not an insult. I just like whatever charisma she has. It doesn't like, do the thing for me. I am magnetically attracted to Pedro Pascal, and I assume there are people in the world who are not, although I can't get inside of that head. Who would dare? Who would dare? The funniest thing about about his charisma, Paul. The absolute funniest thing about his charisma is that if you look at it again, Colonia. Dignidad this this documentary on Netflix. If you look at the early footage of him from, like, the 50s, when he's still a youngish guy, did you ever watch Star Trek the next generation? Of course you watched? Yeah, he looks like Barkley. He looks like Reginald Barkley. Yes, it's very weird because again, wow. Hundreds of people followed this man into an unthinkable situation and he looks like Barkley. What a world. It just goes to show. It's just like, it's it's like Trump. There are people who find that man irresistible and he looks like Donald Trump. Yeah. Like pictures of him. It's like, yeah, as this as this, like great Superman are are always. So it's it's chilling in a way because it's like, you are we looking at the same dude? Yeah. What is happening here? And it's that they have a whole, however many years they've been alive of life that has built them into a person who finds this person charismatic. That's the way it. You know that it's like I say, I think there is a cult who could ensnare everyone. I don't think anybody is impossible to be brought in by a cult. I don't think it's unless maybe you've already been in a cult and like, you get that kind of like PTSD, but I think everybody could at some point in their life be reached by some cold out there. It just depends. It's like a drug. Anybody could become an addict to something, you know? Except your cult challenge and and we'll see about that. Alright. Paul, are we having a cult off? Yeah, I'm gonna start making calls. OK. You know, meetings. This is this is what L Ron Hubbard and Frank or Robert Heinlein did, and we got both the Church of Scientology and the Libertarian Party out of it. So I think this could go really well. We'll do it good though. We'll do it good though. Good. We'll do it good. Yeah. I mean we'll we'll be nice cults. I'm still gonna, I'm still gonna have 20 year olds building Navy for me and search for gold in the Caribbean. Oh no, that is not negotiable. That is non negotiable. Yes, a lot of teenagers searching for gold for me. So after several years in the proverbial and also sometimes literal wilderness because I think he did live in the woods sometimes Paul Schaefer had gathered enough followers and money because you know, again, part of the whole. Whole thing is you get a bunch of people together. You have them pull their money so you can buy things. They buy a compound which they intend to turn into an orphanage outside of a town called Troisdorf for war widows and orphaned children. Now again this is the early 50s, mid 50s in Germany. A lot of desperate *** people. So like as a my family, my my grandpa was stationed in Germany immediately, like immediately after the war, along with a bunch of his brothers. Our family heirlooms are like we have a bunch of. 150 year old antique precious grandfather clocks that he bought for like pennies because everybody was starving and Germany and it's one of those things where it's like yeah you know that's that was the situation there was nothing. So Paul is opening the center is like OK there's all these these women who who's whose entire families are gone. It's just them and and kids sometimes not even their kids just children they took from their destroyed town or from this apartment building that collapsed. They need a place to stay and. That's on the surface a very good thing to do, right. And a lot of these people are also refugees from from the East, people who when the Soviets occupy. There's this again, never to equate Soviet with Nazi war crimes because there's no equating, but a couple of million German women get raped during the occupation of of of Germany. It's a ******* nightmare. So a lot of of these women who like have kids as a result of this and have no resources and again, on the surface, creating a place to take care of these people. To educate their kids, to give them food a leg up, one of the best things you could possibly do. But also if you're a predator, anyone who's going to need that facility is going to be someone with almost no recourse to, to deal with the fact that you're praying on their children. Like it's both, you could say one of the best things you could do and also as a pedophile, the best kind of situation you could create for yourself. And that's what Paul is doing. It's pretty bad, Paul. Yeah, that's pretty bad. And also, this has never really talked about any of the coverage I've seen that has to have affected it. When you think about the women in that situation and what they had lived through during the war, I'm going to guess they're able to tolerate a lot more ****** ** **** from Paul just because it's like, well, I lived through World War Two. You're you're you're barometer for what is an unacceptable situation is just completely off forever. I think that's a big factor in this whole story. So Paul offers these women and their families food security and stability and the people who are not. So there's a mix of he's got these people who are living in the orphanage because they have nothing and all of these people who live in the the area around who are like middle class and they're funding all of this because they tithe 10% of their income to Paul. That's one of the requirements for being in his cult. The other is that you have to confess. Their sins daily, ideally to him. I think it's always to him at this stage. Yeah. They have these big meetings where everybody talks about all the bad stuff they've done, which we talked about Synanon last time, Paul. Yeah, yeah, yeah. This is happening at the same time, late 50s, early 60s. All of these different cults are doing Scientology happening at the same time. Huge emphasis in science is, is kind of confused. They don't call it confessing your sins, but that's the idea. Yeah. It's fascinating to me. It's the the collateral thing. Yeah. I mean, it's like it makes sense. Like I get. Why? Having having a bunch of **** on people that they have admitted to you of their own free will could be very handy later on it that there's that. Here's the other thing I find interesting, Paul. All of the Colts that do this all start late 50s, early 60s, and all of the people who become cult members are like the children and the people who came out the other side of World War Two. For whatever reason, this idea of like the center of our cult is going to be the confessing. Sins is huge, maybe because there's no therapy and every but a lot of people in need of therapy because they of what I I think there's something there. I've never really seen it dealt with enough, but it's such a common through line in all of these cults, like the confession of sins that start up in this period of time. Like the group confession of like Things you've done that's bad. I don't know. I I think there might be there's something there gotta be something there. And Germans in 1959. A lot of sense to confess as a population. Speaking of sins to confess, it's time for an ad break. You know who never confesses their sins? Paul? Advertisers, that is for sure. I was going for yeah, or just capitalism and broad. Actually, capitalism makes it very profitable to confess and discuss the sins of capitalism, which is one of the great geniuses of the of the system. Anyway, think about that while you listen to the ads. Ah, we're back. So for a while things are good, at least on the surface. You know, he's taken all these women, these families in. He's got his flock. People are tithing, confessing their sins. Obviously the reality is that Paul is a pedophile and again, at a grand scale, which is why he established an orphanage in the 1st place. So he is molesting an unknown number, but not. Certainly not an insignificant number of these kids. In 1959, one of the widows at his orphanage came forward to the police and reported Paul for molesting her kids. A warrant was issued for his arrest and Schaefer fled to the Middle East with two trusted assistants. So he is now a wanted man in Germany and will be for the rest of his life. So he gets the **** out of Germany, never comes back. It is important to note that a lot of I don't have any. I don't know what percentage of his flock stays with him, but hundreds of them do. Couple of 100 people, maybe 3-4 hundred people, continue to believe that he's a legitimate holy man and that the allegations against him were, I think, part of a communist conspiracy is kind of the way it was generally like justified. We don't know exactly how Schafer talked to his flock about all this stuff, but we have some hints in how he explained this to them, and the fact that by the late 1950s, Paul had become a follower of an American evangelical preacher named William Branham. Now, this is going to be a digression, Paul, but it's it's a necessary one in the US all. Allow a digression. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. You. You said only one digression per episode and threaten me with your cattle prod. But I appreciate your your openness. I'm feeling generous 2 digressions today. Thank you. So in the US in the late 40s and 50s, there's this huge resurgence of evangelical Christianity again, right after World War Two. This is all tied to the cinnamon and the confession when all of this is tied together. Specifically, what what has a big surge is the kind of charismatic evangelism that would eventually evolve into the moral majority and the religious right. This is known historically as the post World War Two healing revival since it occurred right at the same time the Cold War kicked off, you won't be surprised to hear that it was profoundly anti communist. And again, it's not until the 70s like 7374, something like that, that it starts to become political in the traditional sense, like a right wing movement. And you know, anti abortion gets tacked on and it becomes. Eventually, like a part of the Republican Party that hasn't happened yet, but it evolves for that, evolves from this Jerry Falwell and stuff all comes out of this post World War Two healing revival, which is from the beginning rooted in anti communism because of the Cold War. So all of this is a lot of stuff going on is what I'm saying now. Brannum. This preacher who Paul Shaffer comes to follow is a preacher in Indiana. He's an evangelical preacher in Indiana and Indiana in the late 1940s was still reeling from the second Ku Klux Klan, the KKK. National office had been located there, and even though the clan had faded in size and influence by the 50s, Indiana still had a lot of Klansmen. William Branham had been brought into the Pentecostal faith by an official clan spokesman named Roy Davis. So the guy who brings Brannaman is a Klansman. And as you might expect, Brannum is rather hard right in his own beliefs, telling his 10s of thousands of followers that they must strictly follow the Bible, reject communism, and ensure that women obey their husbands no matter what. Not not great stuff coming in here. Branham later inducted a charismatic young preacher. So Branham gets brought in by this Klansman and he brings in a charismatic young preacher to the evangelical faith, a guy you might have heard of named Jim Jones. No boy, boy. We had a real best stuff coming for you today. Like The Avengers of evil. Yeah, The Avengers of of Weird 60s cult leaders. Yeah. God yeah. And you know the guy who played. What's the name of the dude in The Avengers? The the the the suit guy who gets killed in the first movie and then gets his own TV show? Yeah, Clark. Great. Honestly wouldn't make a bad Paul Shaffer. Good actor doesn't look wildly different from him if you're doing an Avengers of. Evangelical cult leaders, which is a terrible idea. I mean, it's it's a terrible idea to do in life. But for a movie, I mean, I, I would, I'd go to a matinee, you know what I mean? It would be fun if if that movie was just like Paul Shaffer, Jim Jones and Ant Man, played by Paul Rudd. Hey man, what are you doing here? Why do you have hundreds of people in the jungle? So Paul Rudd could absolutely pull that off by that for sure. Very charismatic. So Branum later, so Branum brings Jim Jones into the faith and Brannum and Jim Jones do preaching revival meetings together in the late 1950s and early 60s. And I'm going to quote from a write up by John Collins from San Diego University here. And this is he's Collins is writing about how this healing revival in the United States, Branham and Jones, how this influences Paul Shaffer. The healing revival itself coincided with the second Red Scare of 1947 to 1957, and some revivalists of that era claimed to have prophetic insight into what they considered to be the impending destruction of the United States. The state of Indiana, heavily impacted by the propaganda of the Klu Klux Klan and its anti communist speeches and literature, held crowds of people eager to hear any extraordinary insight into the turmoil ahead. Two years prior to the Jones Brandon revival at the Cattle Tabernacle, William Branham began proclaiming the first of several of his doomsday. Predictions claiming that 1954 was the year of destruction only two months prior to their revival, Branham updated his prediction to 1956 as the final year for America to accept his vision of the gospel. This prediction came with emphasis on his claim of a prophetic vision describing Communist Russia's bombing Northern Kentucky and southern Indiana. His doomsday predictions appear to have finally made an influence on Jim Jones. By 1961, Jones himself began claiming prophetic vision of the same bombing in November of 1961. Branham claimed that great. In around the world were predicting that the first bomb from Russia would drop and drop in Louisville, KY, a mile from the Indiana border. Around the same time, in the fall of 1961, Jim Jones began claiming to have had a prophetic vision of Indianapolis being consumed in nuclear Holocaust. So this is fascinating. This Jim Jones connection is fascinating because he and Paul Schaffer, both huge fans of Branham, and both do the same basic thing, which is take a group of people from their home country to a foreign country to create a cult that then does a tremendous amount of violence. One of the things that, I'm sorry, what year are we talking about where Jim Jones gets involved 6150, not like 59. Paul Schaffer Fleas 61 is when Jim Jones, I think when he leaves actually. So he, Jim Jones hits the ground running in terms of like, well though, Jones starts preaching with Branham in the 50s, right, yeah. OK. So Joe Jim Jones will do a whole lot. Jim Jones episode. It's fascinating. But one of things that's interesting to me is that he and Paul Shaffer have the same kind of mentor guy, the same basic journey. Absolutely opposite politics. Paul Shaffer's a ******* Nazi, right? Like literally, literally a Nazi. Jim Jones is a lifelong anti racist activist. He spoke regularly about the need for socialism. Most of his followers were black and a huge part of what he was doing with why he took people out of the United States was this nation is so lost to fascism and racism that we can't survive here. We have to flee to somewhere we couldn't create an ethical, multiracial society, whereas Paul Schaefer is a Nazi and it. It's fascinating that they have the same religious. Inspiration behind what they're doing. And they do the same things for exactly opposite politics. And they do it at the same ******* time because 1961 is when both guys leave to start their cults in foreign countries. Yeah, it's amazing. It's like the common denominator could be the problem. Could, could be what could be the problem. Could be the problem. Yeah. Maybe we should look at what the common denominator is. Maybe the Pentecostal faith is just throwing it out there. Yeah. Yeah, I don't want to. Get too much into that. Don't want to be canceling the snake handlers. Well, let me just take a little sip of strict 9 here, yeah? Ohh yeah, do some psychic surgery. We'll talk more. Again, I'm Jim Jones deserves a couple of episodes on his own fascinating story, but I'm so it's hard for me to say whether or not Paul Schaefer was a real believer in Brandon's message of a looming apocalypse, or if he was an opportunist who is like, oh, this guy's preaching because Schafer's not just preaching that he's that that the US is going to get naked in 1961. Actually, the same year that Brandon and Jim Jones preaching Indianapolis later that year, Brandon goes to Germany and he preaches that Germany is going to get. Duped 2 and Paul Schaefer is a follower of this guy, goes to his followers and says, Hey, Germany is not safe anymore and it just is coincidental that also he can't be in Germany anymore because he's wanted for the police for molesting kids. It works out for I will give people of that era this it was very easy to believe that anywhere was going to be nuked. Yeah, that that is not unreasonable like. That's me. It barely didn't happen. Yeah, like we were right on the edge for awhile there. Thankfully, we solved that problem, and nuclear apocalypse is no longer a looming threat entirely in the hands of a single person any given point in time. What a relief. What a relief. So in 1961, Paul Schafer takes the first ten of his followers overseas to Chile. He had apparently decided that Chile in particular was a good place to move after a chance meeting with the Chilean ambassador when he's in the Middle East and the ambassador didn't know. This guy is an accused pedophile and it's like you're looking for a place to move your flock of religious followers. We got a **** load of Chile. I mean, so much Chile to be handed out. Come and get your Chile. The very best information in English about Schafer's cult comes from an article in the American scholar by Bruce Falconer, which is an incredible name for a journalist. He writes, quote a faded a Falconer named Bruce journalist Bruce journalist. No, no, I'm into falconry. The other guy is the journalist. Quote a faded black and white photograph shows Shaffer stepping off the plane in Santiago in January 1961 in a long black winter coat and matching Fedora, smiling faintly. Within a year, using funds collected from his congregation back in Germany, Schaefer bought an abandoned 4400 acre ranch several 100 miles South of Santiago, which he and some tin original settlers from Germany began to rebuild by the end of 1963, an initial group of approximately 230 Germans. The bulk of Shafer's congregation had immigrated from Europe to the newly named Colonia Dignidad Dignity Colony. Two more waves of German pilgrims followed in 1966 and 73, most belonging to the 15 families that formed the core of Schaefer's following. So this is the way this works, and it's there. There's footage of that documentary. It's a lot of like wild, wild country stuff where you've got these groups of of white people and in the middle of the wilderness who are like putting together building, you know, these massive barracks and barns and whatnot from kind of unhewn wild land. And one of the things about this is that there's not enough space to host everybody at first. So he says at first, hey, we're just going to build one big barracks to host everybody, and everyone's going to live communally instead of in family groups and houses. But that's temporary. Don't worry. Eventually every family is going to get their own house. It's just right now that's not practical. So keep that in mind. That's all that. Chile, there's a lot, but you can't make a house in the night. Paul fair. I mean, you can if you're Jimmy Carter and you're motivated by the ghosts of all the. Or cracks you had to do as president? So, but Jimmy Carter's president? Well, not quite president, but not far from it at this point. So Schaefer's passage into Chile was eased by the fact that the elected government at the time was led by President George Alessandri, a conservative who gave him personal permission to create his dignity colony. The land he bought was a former farm outside of a town called Parral, dead in the middle of Chile, nestled amongst the Indian foothills. It was a fairly isolated place and this allowed Paul to exert something like total control over his followers in Germany. Of his congregation had not lived with him. He did have his orphanage and a core of single mothers and children who had no choice but to stay with him. But much of his congregation had lived in their own private homes. People giving him money all had houses and stuff nearby. Now that they were all in Chile, though, everybody effectively lived with Schaefer and thus under his rule at all times, and he quickly took total control. Step one was to forbid anyone from engaging in private conversations, so you cannot talk if there's just two of you, as he tells his flock. Quote if two were gathered, they are under the devil. If three are gathered, they are under Jesus. What? So because the Sophie, we're under the devil right now. Paul, thanks a lot, Sophie. Wait. No, we're under Jesus because of Sophie. Never mind. It was just you and I would be under this hard to keep straight. There's a lot going on here. I thought it would be simpler to keep to keep track of, but it's like it's actually, it's I'm. I'm a little messed up. Yeah, no, there's there's a lot going on here. A lot going on here, Paul. A lot of people cause Jesus of being the devil, too, Robert. That's right. That's right. And you know what? Maybe he was. We don't know. Oh, boy. Well, that's another episode, yeah, behind the Jesus. So, back in Germany, Schaefer's followers had been ordered to confess their sins on a regular basis, as often as possible. in Group this was ratcheted up, though sins now had to be confessed immediately, whether the sins were physical actions or just thoughts. Now, another key aspect of life at the dignity colony was that children and their parents had to be separated forever. Like. You said that seems bad to you, huh? It's like, man, I don't know what's so, what's amazing to me about. Because this this was Synanon, too, right where they separated the kids. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. You're right. You're right. And right around the same time. Yeah, that doesn't. That's not an immediate red flag. Is always like, that's that's how sad cults are, is that you're so sucked into this thing that there must be something inside of you said, is this right? That they take my kids away from me? I feel like it's natural for children. Would be important to parents. It's almost like I'm having an instinct right now. Yeah, I I am having to fight against. Yeah. This feels maybe unnatural. Maybe abandoning your children and having no contact with them through force is, like, not human. But what do I know? I mean, what do I know? He's holy. I'm not. He's the he's the holy man who can't live in Germany for unspecified reasons. Also, I did tell him that I thought about a **** recently. Oh, man. I don't want that thing getting out. Yeah. He could tell my parents who were Nazis. So another yeah, so parents and children had to be separated. Now, Paul, to go into this little detail, I need to note the source here is Wikipedia. And as a rule, I don't like to use Wikipedia as a source for my episodes. Not because it's not a useful, it's very useful, but because you can always trace the claims back, and that's always ideal. But some of the claims for this episode are based on recorded conversations that Schaefer had with people, and those were translated by somebody who was doing the wiki. And that's where I found the translation. So, right I, we're trusting them a little bit on this. I don't see a reason not to particularly, but, you know, caveat emptor. Caveat emptor. Yeah. So this translation from Wikipedia claims that Schaefer justified his child parent separation policy by claiming the problems in child education aren't the children. They are always the parents, because the parents are responsible for the sins of the children. True. I mean, yeah, that's that's that's not again, that's gonna be made. Yeah, that's good coach **** though, because that's a thing where it's like, OK, well, you can't argue that point, but it's also it's irrelevant to the idea of separating children permanently from their parents. Like. Exactly. Yeah, generally, if a kid is doing something ****** ** it's the parents. Something the parent did is involved because their kids, you know, they're. So essentially the reasoning is if you're going to do something, do it right. So if the if the parents are responsible for the sins. And and and it intrudes on the teaching. Just gotta get those kids out of there. To get those kids out of there, gotta unpayment them. That's the problem. Now the reality of course is that again, Paul Schaffer was a pedophile on an industrial scale and as a pedophile your best situation. I mean the situation he had in the orphanage was pretty good, but obviously one of those moms was able to go to the cops because they were still living in society. The best situation is to drop out of society, have your own weird self-sufficient cult where parents and their children are forced to live separately, but you have total run over all of the facilities and can go anywhere that's. That's your best case scenario as a pedophile? Yeah. And he's orchestrated this, and I have to think I don't. It's always the question like what do they what did they believe? How much of it did they buy into with any cult leader? You have that question with Schaefer. Maybe he believed something, but I can't help but see everything he's doing is this extremely calculated years long plan to develop the best case scenario for a child molester like like that really feels like at least a big part of what's going on here. Yeah. I mean because I I don't know. I have not studied pedophilia. I don't know like the but what from what I. But I kind of just know from osmosis is like. There, the the thing that makes pedophiles so horrible is that they have convinced themselves that they are that this is OK to do and that people don't understand it. Yeah. And so it's like the only that that's why I have to keep it hidden, is because nobody would understand understand what a what a pure love this is or whatever. So it it makes sense that that you would want to. So create a world, literally a world where you can just do whatever you want and you don't have to worry about people understanding it or not. Yeah, you make the moral rules here so you don't have to care about what other people and you have convinced yourself that you're right. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I think that you just have to, you have to explain it in a way that people will understand because they're not going to understand the the purity of what you are doing. Yep. So put it in terms of these, these sort of like these less evolved people like, I don't know what they. Yeah. I mean, I think that's how Schafer sees it. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Because he also sees we'll talk about this more, but like traditional sex between adults as horrible and to be avoided at all costs. My God. So this is, there's a lot going on with Mr Paul. Yeah. So if you're curious about the experience of little kids taken from a relatively normal home life in Germany to this whole world, I want to read you the story of a kid named Verner Schmidtka. This is from a write up in Reuters quote. He sailed to Chile in 1962 as a 2 year old, along with his mother and nine brothers and sisters, one of whom died as a child in Colonia Dignidad. His parents were convinced to sell the family home and follow Schaefer to South America by his powerful preaching and promise of a more godly life. Schmidtka's father stayed in Germany to look after the sect's business interests and joined them in Chile eight years later. On board the ship, the children were separated from their mother, whom Schmidtka remembers as a good hearted woman, and then were kept apart like the other families in the enclave. In their new home, Schmidtka lived in the timber Kinder House, or Children's House, where Schaefer had his private apartment. It was there that he first encountered the charismatic leader. One or two boys would be taken to his room every day, and one day I was called, Schmidtka told Reuters. He sat me down on his bed and started to stroke me and ask me questions, to talk the way a father talks to his child. And I had no parents anymore. I have never forgotten my first dealings with Shaver, he said. I was about seven or eight. That is when the abuse and rape started. Ooh, so. There's a lot going on here. One of the things he's doing is he's. In order to make these kids, I think, more compliant, you take away their parents and then you're like, I'm the father figure for all of the kids here. And not only does that mean the parents aren't around to complain, but like. Kids need parents, you know? Yeah. And they don't, they're they're more they're understanding of the moral universe is heavily influenced by parents. And so if this guy who's the only father figure they're allowed is saying this is just what you do, yeah, it's just what you do, you're 8, you know? Yeah, it's pretty ****** **. Yeah, it's it's it's real bad. Think I don't know you. It's it's it's already monstrous enough. And then it, when you get into the what feels like the deviousness of it all, yeah, it's it's heartbreaking that somebody, somebody can be this evil. Yeah, it is. Evil, unlike an almost incomprehensible scale because he spent like a decade orchestrating this. Yeah. Like the work that was put into it. Yeah, it's it's a honestly, so far a pretty unique story that I've come across. Like this is a thank God. Like, yeah. But you know what's not a unique story, Paul? Ohh wow, there it is. Advertisements. The story of the success of all of our fantastic advertisers. That's not unique at all because there's so many wonderful products and services that support this podcast. That's true. So we're back, and yet we're talking about the fact that there's elements of this in a number of cults taking kids away from parents even. Like L Ron Hubbard did this to some of his followers and stuff. And it wasn't like, I don't. I've never come across any evidence that he was a child molester. It's also just like as a cult leader, the concept of a family is one of your chief enemies, right? Like, but yeah, so we have no idea, no way of knowing how many children Shafer abused. It's not even entirely clear to me. I think it was was boys just boys? But I that I I can't say that to a point of certainty. All of the direct claims I've heard from victims were male. But again, I'm sort of locked out from a lot of the survivor accounts of this guy because I don't read German. And a decent number of those accounts are in German language print books that have not been digitized in any way or or translated. One thing that's clear is that Paul Shaffer absolutely hated the concept of people having sex in a way that did not involve him molesting children. There's a story that's told in that Netflix documentary. Of of two of his victim, well, 2 two people who were in the cult, one of whom as a young boy was one of his victims. And they're married now and they talk about there was one time early on in the Colts history where they did a big dance with all the men and women, and Schaefer saw the way they tell the story. He saw a couple of like young couples, like little kids who were clearly like into each other, including this couple who again later get married dancing together, and it it enraged him because he was jealous of the boys. That the girls were like, that's why he starts to separate the sex, because he's insanely jealous that there will be rivals for the attention of these little boys, and that's why he separates the genders. That's that's what they claim. I don't know, like, you know that they're coming at this from one perspective. I don't know how much it was planned ahead of time, but one of the things that's interesting in that documentary, while the husband relates the stories of the time Schaefer abused him, his wife is sitting there next to him, was also in the cold. And I I think if you want to look at the purest expression of hatred I've ever seen on a human face, her face in that scene is it's chilling, obviously completely justified, but it is quite a thing to see. So back in Germany, Schaefer had obviously preached about abstinence constantly, and now that he was in Chile, he insisted that everybody be abstinent, even married couples. Schaefer preached that women were Temptresses who would uncontrollably Dr men to sexual sin and pull them away from God. Channeling his spiritual mentor, Branham, he argued that this was why women needed to be tightly controlled by men. But unlike Branham, he didn't believe that husbands could be trusted with this job, only he could keep sexual anarchy. Bay. So he's taking this this this traditional Christian cult leader is like women have to be controlled because of their uncontrollable sexuality. So you have to make sure people are. Women are tightly unleash until they're married, and then it's there. The husband's responsibilities shafers. Like, even if they've got a husband, they'll be *******. And God doesn't want people *******. You know what? Let me take care of this. I got a better idea. I'll be in charge of it so you don't have to worry about it. Isn't that great? Hmm? No. As time you. Yeah. Let's work for you. Because you just can't. As time went on, women and men were entirely isolated from each other. At the Colonia, women were dressed at all time and baggy sackcloth, dresses that were meant to hide every hint of breasts or hips. They wore their hair in tight buns. Both men and women engaged in constant hard labor, sometimes for 12 hours a day, to ensure they were too tired to bone. The side effect of this is that they made a lot of money for Paul Schaefer. These are Germans, you know, they're good at, they're good at working. Industrious people, right? Yeah. So after he'd arrived in Chile, his agents back in Germany has succeeded in selling his old orphanage, which he used to buy a German stone crushing machine in order to operate a profitable quarry. His followers began to farm too, and in a few years they were selling both wheat and quarried stone. Gradually they build up a financial bit. They do start selling, like Bratwurst and stuff like German they start making and selling like raising animals, making German food. Products to sell to Chile, like Argentina, has a sizeable German expat community for reasons that are not great. But all of this allows them to build a financial base, and they were able to build a lot of infrastructure on this compound, including several barracks for the faithful to live in. And again, it starts as like we all have to live in the same barracks, and then in all men have to live in one and all women have to live in the other. Because we haven't been here long, we don't have time to make everyone a house. And then gradually shavers like you know what? Nobody's getting houses. You're all living communally except for me. I have a bedroom in the children's house. I just feel like the gymnastics, the mental gymnastics that people in a cult have to go through with, with all of the plans changing all the time. Like it's the same story every time, where it's like, I promise you this, but now there's a different thing. I I told you I was immortal, but guess what now? Now I'm this like, and these poor people have to keep it. Must like the the number must do on your brain. To to just be in that kind of denial and say, like, well, I mean, he is the best sort of God on Earth to me. And and I just have to trust that he knows what's best, even though he's changed this plan every single time. You know what? There's an element of it that this is like, if you've ever been in a relationship that gets really bad and you're living together and it becomes intolerable. But you're like, oh, **** we gotta, like, figure out what to do about the lease. Like, I have to. You have to separate. Stuff, all this stuff we bought together, we have to figure out who. And you just continue to say, stay in an intolerable situation because you think about, like, the logistics of getting out of it. These people don't come to Germany being like, yeah, everyone will be separated. You'll have no family. You'll live in a barracks with every one of the same gender and age as you. They're told, like, well, you know, come over here. We're going to build this godly community. You know, everyone will have their houses eventually, but we got to do this first and this first and this first. And then it becomes clear that, like, Oh no, this has changed and this is never going to happen there, and you don't have to. Sport. No, you can't get out. Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah. It's it's difficult. People and people just accept things, you know? And also, like, everybody you knows there, like, what are you going back to? You know? That said, while most people go along with this, there were folks who rebelled from the beginning. And Bruce Falconer writes about these rebels. Quote a rebel named Wolfgang Muller tried to escape on three separate occasions. Twice, one, then once in 1962 and again in 1964. He fled to the home of a Chilean family in a nearby town, and twice members of the colonial security force found him there and brought him back. Both times, Mueller was beaten and forcibly sedated on his third and final escape attempt. In 1966, he made it as far as Santiago, where he received police protection and sought refuge in a German embassy safe house. On orders from Schaefer, 15 members of the colony stormed the house in an attempt to recapture him. After a fist fight with police, they fled. Soon after, Mueller left Chile and found safety in Germany. Where, despite his repeated accusations against Schaefer, government officials took no action. And there's this mix with the German government of on the, on the grand scale, shameful failure to do anything about this on an individual scale. Scale. There's some very heroic members of the German government. This when this kid finally escapes to Santiago, he goes to like the German ambassador basically in Santiago and tells him what's happened. And this guy hides him in a safe house and like Ed, significant danger and eventually helps him smuggle out to the country. So there's this mix of like the German Government, total failure individuals in the German. Government do a lot of laudable work to try to help this guy and other people escape when they when they're able to get out. It was actually the Chilean government, which is not going to get a lot of praise in this article, that first attempted to investigate Mueller's allegations against Schaefer. In 1968, they sent a parliamentary delegation to look into the claims of torture. Shaffer had his children sing for the delegation and then plied them with a meal of excellent food. They determined that no abuse had occurred and that Mueller was lying. And there was like a period where they had like an A warrant out to try to question him and stuff. They were like, Schafer organized protests. They never actually got him. And it's like he he has friends. The government, you know, like right wing friends in the government because he's this, he's, he's, he's he's got a lot of money and stuff to throw around, and so does the Nazi community in Chile, which is a part of this. We'll talk about that more later. So the first attempt to shed light on the crimes of Paul Shaffer and the Colonia Dignidad failed, not for lack of trying. Mueller still lived in Germany as of 2008, and now he operates a nonprofit that works to fight the abuse of children by religious sects. So he seems to have gotten out of that as well as you possibly could. Now, there were several attempts by children to flee the abuse of the colonia during the 1960s. One of the first was Helmut Hop. He was caught and punished, but he had a chance to redeem himself and Paul Shaffer's eyes. In 1966, when another teenager succeeded in escaping, Wolfgang niece fled and managed to reach the German embassy again. He made allegations that he'd been tortured and sexually assaulted, and he made these directly to the press. To deal with this, Schaefer convinced Helmut Hopp, who had just been trying and trying to escape. Self a few years earlier to go to Santiago and accuse niece of lying and having sexually assaulted him. So he's like, hey, you want to get back in my good graces? Like, I'll make you my number one boy, but you got to go say #1 this guy's lying and #2 he's the one who's doing the sexual assaults. This successfully muddies the waters enough that nieces allegations don't do any permanent damage to the colt's niece is allowed to return to Germany, thankfully, and Schaefer rewards hop for his service by allowing him to leave the colonia. Temporarily and go to medical school. So this is like you play a ball with Schaefer, you get, you get special privileges other people don't get. And he needs hop to be a doctor, right? Because he has a scheme that heavily involves having a doctor. So over the mid 1960s, Schaefer had been funneling the money made by his flocks labor into the construction of a 65 bed hospital. It was reportedly state-of-the-art, and by the time hop came back from medical school, a newly minted Dr, It was ready to go, Paul. Paper was not a dumb man, and he understood that bringing a bunch of Germans into the middle of Chile and then doing weird cult **** was something that could go really bad, especially if the right wing president who liked him got replaced the Colonia Dignidad Hospital. Though, once they get this running, they start providing free healthcare to local Chileans who have no closer options for medical care of this quality. The hospital had sterile operating rooms, a high quality maternity ward where for generations most of the local women in the area give birth to their children. About 26,000 people relied on this hospital, which is subsidized by government. Once the government has a vested interest in this continuing to function, it's smart. Wow. The, the, the, the deviousness is, yeah, it's off the charts. This guy, my God, like, I don't know, I I guess it's like for me, for me, if I try to do something like this, I would. There's so many things I would not have thought about. Yeah, yeah. Hospital. None of this. I wouldn't be nearly this good at a Chilean cult. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it's it's it's it's something else. It's amazing how smart he is for a man. Once gouged his own eye out, right. Untie his shoe. But you know what? Here's the thing. You, you, you. You must learn from mistakes. That's right. That's right. It's like, OK, this didn't go the way it should have. What could I have done differently? And then apply that lesson as you go along in life. Gouge my own eye out once. Shame on you. Yeah, so the Colonia Dignidad hospital also pays for a network of buses that drive to and from isolated villages in the area, collect locals who need to see a doctor on a regular basis. The colonia also supplies local women with four and a half pounds of powdered milk a month for the first six months of their child's life. So this is becomes very quickly an integral part of the healthcare infrastructure of this area. This is particularly a big deal because Chile spends a lot of the 60s and 70s in a state of political and economic turmoil, which we'll talk about a bit more later. The thrust of the matter is that few of the powers that be in the area, and even the regular people who live nearby, had any interest in looking critically at what was going on in the colonia, because it's a lifeline to the people there. But while the hospital undoubtedly saved a lot of lives, it was by all accounts a quality hospital, although. Quality is. Let me explain to you what this hospital is doing. It's it's it's doing a lot of births. It's doing a lot of surgeries. A lot of people's lives are saved by this hospital. That is not all that it's doing. It is an integral part of Paul Shaffer's architecture of torture. See, as the colonia aged, Paul developed tactics for more clearly delineating and punishing the rebels in his midst. He forced the men to wear rebel like men who had basically committed crimes against the colony, to wear red shirts and white pants. He forced the women to wear potato sacks over their dresses, and he ordered the other followers to treat them with hatred. One rebel was a young Chilean boy and in order to deal with the fact that his so in the late 60s, he starts taking local Chilean boys in. And this is to deal with the fact that he's not letting his followers breed. Obviously this guy's a pedophile, he's not letting his followers breed. So there's at some point not going to be any more young boys from the molest. So they start adopting local kids to provide him with a steady stream of victims. This boy Franz Barr was adopted by the German cult when he was tin. Now he did not like being forced to live in a weird Nazi sex cult. By the time he was a teenager, Paul had singled him out as a rebel. I'm going to quote from Bruce Falconer's article in the American scholar here quote as Barr now remembers it, a group of men approached him one day while he was working in the carpentry shop and accused him of stealing the keys to one of the dormitories. When Barr denied it, he was beaten unconscious with electric cables, his skull broken and loaded into an ambulance. He awoke sometime later in the hospital where he would remain as a prisoner for the next 31 years. Barr was kept in an upstairs section of the hospital, never seen by the local Chileans who sought. Treatment there, as he later described to me, his days began with a series of intravenous injections, after which the nurses brought him bread and a plate with 12 to 15 different pills. Once satisfied that he was properly medicated, nurses delivered his clothes and shoes hidden from him to reduce the likelihood of escape. After he dressed, a security detail escorted him to his job at the carpentry shop, Barr worked on heavy machines in a cramped space. The injections and pills slowed his movements and made him clumsy. Today, scar tissue on his forearms maps the places where the electric saws bit into his flesh. Barr was forced to work late into the night, sometimes until 3:00 AM he was not permitted to eat with the rest of the community. Instead, his meals were delivered to him at the carpentry shop, where he devoured them in isolation. A still worse punishment awaited in rooms 9 and 14 of the hospital, where Barr and other members unfortunate enough to draw the full measure of Schaefer's fury were subjected to shock treatments. A female physician worked the machines her manner. Detached and clinical. Patients were strapped down and fitted with crowns attached by wires to a voltage machine. Barr told me how the doctors seemed to enjoy. Watching him suffer, she kept asking me questions. He said I heard what she was saying and wanted to respond, but I couldn't. She was playing with the machine and asking what do you feel? Are you feeling something? She wanted to know what was happening to me as she adjusted the voltage. I mean, the female physician, was this an actual doctor? That is, that is agreed to? Yeah, I'll torture these guys for you. I think these are people, special preferred people who he let's get medical degrees and whatnot because he needs doctors and because he needs people to offer to do this torturing to help him with it. Damn. He's also doing a lot of the torturing. A lot of sources will note that when they were tortured, Schaefer was there. So he's often there, particularly when children are tortured, and he really likes to be the. One who does the torturing of the children. There were not always reasons given for punishment, now that Barr's case was one of the more elaborate ones, but it was not uncommon for kids to get punished without being told why. Just beaten with rods for 30 minutes at a time. It seems likely that this was just a kink of shafers. This is something that gave him sexual pleasure and that's why he was doing it. It's it's messed up. Paul yeah. Now one of the people who helped him with the torturing and punishment was a guy named Heinrich Himpel now Hempel. Survived. Paul Shaffer. He still lived. Or at least when he did this interview, he still lived in the colonia. Because it could. It's still around today. It exists after Schafer. Ohhh. Yeah. Yeah. Wait till you hear what they're doing with it now, Paul. You know what? I'll tell you, Robert, I did not. I did not see that one coming. Yeah. That's a lot of surprises in this. Wow. Wow. So this guy, Heinrich Hemple, who's one of the I don't think he's doing the the elect, the ******** torture, but he's one of the guys who's like, beating kids with a stick when they're punished and what not, and I think probably adults, too. He gives an interview with Bruce Falconer of the American Scholar Falconer writes, quote Hempel confides that during World War Two, as the Soviets were pushing through Eastern Europe, his family had been forced out of East Prussia and thrown into a Soviet labor camp in Poland. They spent five years there. Under terrible conditions his brother and sister froze to death in the snow. He describes the high fences that had surrounded the camp in Poland and draws them in my notebook with coils of razor wire at their base. He tells me that after his release he had gone to Germany and joined Schaefer's congregation. I asked him why he had moved to Chile. He thinks for a minute, smiles and says I came here to do five years of charity work, but then I forgot how to leave. And that's a key and why people are willing to accept this brutality and why some of these people are willing to do this brutality. You have to think about what was their ******* childhood like. They were Germans in the early 40s, you know, like everything that's happening seems a little bit less ****** ** if your childhood was my family starved to death in a prison camp after the war when I was a child. Like, yeah, you know, it's it's yeah, a real man. Hands down misery to man situation. Now, depending on how you measure such things, the rebels, the people like Barr who were punished were in some ways the lucky ones. Because on the other end of things, where the young boys who Schaffer considered the his, his, his golden boys the ideal representatives of proper behavior, he called these his sprinters, and this is because of the job that he gave them. If he wanted to speak to a follower who was laboring in a distant end of the colonia, he would send a sprinter to run off and go get them. L Ron Hubbard actually did a very similar thing. He had this network of little kids who would be his voice. To his followers in time, these sprinters. Sherlock Holmes. Yeah, or Fagan. Like having your little army of kids? Yeah. Now, with this exception that this is the problem here, he's molesting all of them. I mean, yeah, yeah, yeah, which Holmes rarely did. So when he was under the influence of the solution, yeah. So in time, like these kids are doing, they're just like running and getting people. They're doing stuff like, he gets so lazy that they're like holding a phone up to his ear and **** like real decadent cult leader ****. Sprinters were rewarded with better treatment, with respect and with an ability to whisper into the prophets ear about those on the colonia they disliked. But this came at a terrible cost because of course Schaefer was molesting all of them. He kept them around him at all times. They followed him when he took his daily tour of the grounds wearing a uniform he had picked out for them. Loose athletic shorts within his elastic waistband. Obviously this is their uniform for reasons that should be unfortunately obvious. Yeah, you know. For his very best sprinters, there was a special reward. His room included a child sized bed set up right next to his own bed. Sometimes more than one sprinter would sleep there. Sometimes he would drug them with sedatives, wash them with a sponge, and sexually assault them. So. Woo. It's not getting better. It's not getting better, yeah. You know what I expected? But it's a Bleak 1, Paul. Yeah, it's a bleak one. It's one of the rougher ones we've had to talk about. Left Wing candidate Salvador Allende was elected to be the, you know, the President of Chile in 1970, and he brought with him promises of socialism and a number of different reforms. This terrified Paul Shaffer, who considered Ayende to be nothing more than the physical reincarnation of Joseph Stalin. Mixed with, one presumes, the literal Christian devil, he started marshalling his followers to prepare for an apocalyptic assault. They smuggled weapons in from Germany. Since the colonial was a charitable organization, IT shipments were not stopped by. Customs in this way they smuggled in dozens of submachine guns which they used as models so they could turn their machine shop to the task of reproducing dozens of nearly identical assault rifles. Over the years of Ayende short time and power, they acquired thousands of grenades, mortars, and even a handful of surface to air missile launchers. So now they have an army. Great. That's what this pedophile cult really needed to get cooking. Should have seen it coming. Surface to air missile launchers. What I heard about the hospital, I should have said what's keeping that army? Yeah, what's what's keeping? So given what comes later, it's very likely that Colonia Dignidad was not just able to acquire this arsenal because the authorities didn't check the shipping of a charitable organization. The police and military hated Ayende because he was left wing and likely had an arrangement with Schaefer. He may have been giving guns to right wing militant groups we don't entirely know. In the early 1970s, though, Schaefer starts planning a coup against Ayende. He brings in another Nazi to help him with the planning and it's unclear to me if this coup attempt fed into the coup against Diende or was just a separate plan for a coup attempt. But as we've talked about a couple of times on the show the CIA comes in, they give a right wing general like backing and Augusto Pinochet, that right wing general on September 11th 1973 takes power by extreme violence. Ayende dies of a self-inflicted gunshot wound and for a week or so the scattered forces of the left fought in the street. But in very short order, the country was under the military's control. Pinochet immediately declared a state of emergency, he suspended the Constitution, he disbanded Congress, he banned political parties, and he censored the press. Socialism was annihilated in Chile, which Paul Schaefer hailed as a victory against international communism. In the months that followed, Pinochet ordered at least 45,000 people arrested and taken to detention centers to be interrogated and often tortured. More than 1500 people were killed this way in the first year of his reign. To facilitate all this, the general ordered the creation of the National Intelligence Directorate, where Dina to act as a secret police force dedicated to maintaining his grip on power. But it's actually kind of hard to do that. I don't know if you've ever tried to build a brutal intelligence apparatus from scratch, Paul. Not an easy task. It it's really we're trying to do it now. It it it cools out media and Garrison and Chris barely understand how to attach a ****** to a car battery. I mean, are terrible at it. Are you saying I shouldn't bother? No, no, I mean, you gotta you gotta try. Paul. You look a journey of 1000 steps starts with one step, right? That's true. A journey of 1045 thousand dissidents tortured. You gotta start torturing, you know? Alright, yeah. OK. OK. OK. Yeah. You know what? I needed that talk. And thank you. Thank you. Just trying to encourage you. I give up too easy. That's my problem. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, that's why most people never get the kind of secret police force they deserve. Yeah. So the good news for the fascists, the bad news is that the, the, you know, the bad news for the fascists is that it's actually hard to find a lot of people who are willing to like torture folks to death. Most folks, even most folks who are ****** are, are aren't up for that. You know, like even among the people who are ******** the people that want to do it, they really want to do, really want to do it. And the great news for Pinochet is that there's this heavily armed Nazi commune full of psychopaths who have been torturing. Their own children. So if they're psyched to torture people for the dictator, right, like they got no issue with that at all, and in very short order, Colonia Dignidad becomes one of Pinochet's most well used torture and execution sites. We're going to talk more about that in part too, Paul, but that's kind of a bummer. Note to end the episode on, and so in the interest of closing things out on a more upbeat note. Well, I got a little story, Paul, a little story about Santa Claus. All right. This comes from that article in the American scholar and. Boy howdy, Paul. I'm excited to read this one to you. OK, now, this is this is we're ending on an up note that I would call it a high note, alright? Because it's one of the craziest things I've heard about in my entire ******* life. Alright, OK. No one inspired greater love and admiration among the children of the colonia than Santa Claus. It is said that in the days shortly before Christmas, one year in the mid 1970s, Schaefer gathered the Colonius children, loaded them onto a bus, and drove them out to a nearby river where he told them. Santa was coming to visit. The boys and girls stood excitedly along the riverbank while an older man in a fake beard and a red, white suit floated towards them on a raft. Schaefer pulled a pistol from his belt and fired, seeming to wound Santa, who tumbled into the water where he thrashed about before disappearing below the waves. It was a charade, but Schaefer turned to the children assembled before him and said that Santa was dead from the day forward. That day forward Schafer's birthday was the only holiday celebrated inside Colonia Dignidad. He's so jealous of these kids attention that he literally murders Santa Claus in a river. Sorry that is that is extra I I. I can't. Just. I mean. To to to have a brain. Yeah, that came up with that. That comes up with that ******* idea. I. Like, in a weird way, I have to respect it. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's like when you hear about, like, some of the like, L Ron Hubbard infiltrating the federal government more than the USSR ever did, it's like, *** ****. It's not only not letting kids have Santa, yeah. They need to know he's dead. I gotta take this ************ out. I can't. I can't have him around. Drop this *** ** * *****. This guy who doesn't exist and I it has to be the whole story that he told there has to be that, like, well, he flew over the colonial, so we shot him down with one of our Sam's. You did him in the river. Jesus. Exactly. Yeah, they have to. They have to see it. Yeah, I Santa is a thing that's just told to kids. They believe it. I have to. I can't trust that I have to kill him. That is hard. We are at behind the ********. Kind of connoisseurs of like the extremes of the human condition. That's one of the wildest things I've ever heard of a human being doing 100 percent, 100%. That is beyond rattlesnake assassination levels of like, wild miles beyond. Still three OA level **** here. Schaefer's playing in the big leagues. *** ****. Ohh, man, I'm gonna say it. That's the one to beat. That's the one to beat. That's the one to beat. Yeah. Anybody can torture. Anyone can assassinate. This is the one. This is like gold standard. Yeah, this is our new gold standard. Good luck on their criminally insane Mad Men. Yeah, you've got you've got quite quite a quite a thing to top here. If you're not, if you're not going to ranging Santa's assassin assassination in front of children. I turn around and walk out that I got no time for you. I don't want to hear your story. Yeah. Wow. Ohh, Paul, that is gonna close us out. For part one. That was a journey, man. That was a real journey. Ohh, you weren't lying. OK, OK. From gouging his own eye out, untying his shoe, to murdering Santa Claus in front of an audience of children. What a ******* tale. We covered some ground, my man. Yes, we did. Well, Paul, you got anything to plug? I will say I did a show this past Saturday called the Uncanny Hollow. I did a live show in here in LA, but it's available online. We we archived it, we filmed it in, archived it. And if you'd like to see that, you can go to It is a a sort of twilight zone ISH sketch show that I did with an awesome cast. And it was a blast. So yeah, go check that out online. That's great. Yeah, those guys are the best. They're the best. ******* rad. So check that out, check Paul out. And don't move to Chile with a Nazi cult leader. I thought. I thought you were gonna say don't murder Santa Claus. I mean, look, look, look, I'm a Texan, so somebody comes into my home without asking, you know, you gotta do what you gotta do. And on that note, that's part one. Yeah, Boo boy.