The Veterans of PO Box 1142, a highly secret operation which interrogated high-value Nazi detainees, have just begun to speak about their experiences after honoring their commitment to silence for six decades. The veterans of P.O. Box 1142, a top-secret installation in Fairfax County that went only by its postal code name, were brought back to Fort Hunt by park rangers who are piecing together a portrait of what happened there during the war. Nearly 4,000 prisoners of war, most of them German scientists and submariners, were brought in for questioning for days, even weeks, before their presence was reported to the Red Cross, a process that did not comply with the Geneva Conventions. Many of the interrogators were refugees from the Third Reich. "We did it with a certain amount of respect and justice," said John Gunther Dean, 81, who became a career Foreign Service officer and ambassador to Denmark. The interrogators had standards that remain a source of pride and honor. "During the many interrogations, I never laid hands on anyone," said George Frenkel, 87, of Kensington. "We extracted information in a battle of the wits. I'm proud to say I never compromised my humanity."

Descriptive Evidence from World War II

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11 years ago

Photo: 1943  Veterans of PO Box 1142, a highly secret operation which interrogated high-value Nazi detainees, have just begun to speak about their experiences after honoring their commitment to silence…

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