New York - He stared at the deliberate German script in the tattered notebook—the ravings of one of the most evil minds in history, and the killer of 100 of his family members.
“I don’t want to touch it,” he said.
The Orthodox Jewish New Yorker first laid eyes on the diary of Dr. Josef Mengele on Thursday at a Connecticut auction house .
He bought the 86-page journal last week from the auctioneer after the document failed to attract a bidder at the $60,000 reserve price. The buyer has requested anonymity but agreed to speak to The Post about his reasons for acquiring the Nazi madman’s innermost musings.
The buyer’s grandmother, who survived Auschwitz, witnessed the “Angel of Death” choose prisoners to go to the gas chambers.
“People were terrified to even look at him,” she told her grandson. “The SS soldiers were even scared to look at him.”
Mengele, an SS officer and physician at the death camp in Poland, conducted nightmarish human experiments, including amputations, sterilization and surgeries without anesthetics. He was obsessed with twins and oversaw gruesome tests on 3,000 sets.
Mengele started the diary—handwritten in blue ink in a school notebook bearing the image of children with a horse on the cover—in 1960 while hiding out in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
It does not mention Nazis, Hitler or the death camps. But it is filled with subjects near and dear to the mad doctor’s cold heart—eugenics, the superiority of the German race, the inferiority of women.
Mengele meanders from a discussion of aesthetics in “Dr. Zhivago” to a rant on how the mentally challenged should be sterilized so their “inferior genes” would not be passed on.
His primary point is: “the simple and fundamental truth that human beings are not equal.”
“Everything will end in a catastrophe if natural selection is altered to the point that the gifted people are overwhelmed by billions of morons (this might happen faster than you think),” he writes.
He believes that “women’s work has to depend on fulfilling a biological quota.”
The contents turned the buyer’s stomach.
“He shows no regret. No emotion,” he said. “If people are looking for closure, they won’t find it in this diary.”
Mengele eluded punishment, dying in 1979 after a stroke while swimming at the age of 67. His body was exhumed in 1985 in Brazil and his identity confirmed through DNA tests seven years later.
“It’s very emotional,” said the buyer, who purchased the diary with his parents after reading about it in an Israeli newspaper. “It should have been written in red ink because it was written by a man with blood on his hands.”
He said they felt the diary “must be preserved” and kept so “it doesn’t fall in the wrong hands or get destroyed.” They plan on donating it to a Holocaust museum.
Some Holocaust survivor groups question the authenticity of the document and the morality of selling Mengele’s handiwork for profit.
The auction house, Alexander Autographs, said it bought the diary from an American collector who observers believe acquired it from Mengele’s son, Rolf, 65.
Bill Panagopulos, president of the Stamford-based auction house, claimed he verified the diary, matching it with several authenticated war-dated letters and pinpointing the age of the paper, ink and notebook.
Rabbi Marvin Heir, founder and dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center—whose namesake unsuccessfully hunted Mengele—has been in close contact with the New York family that bought the document.
“I think this family did a very courageous thing,” Heir said. “What would happen if Jews didn’t secure documents? They would end up underground in the hands of an anti-Semite or destroyed.
“The choice is: Lose it, or retain it for history.”
Mind of a madman
Entries from the 1960 diary (left) of Nazi war criminal Dr. Josef Mengele, written while he was in hiding in Argentina:
‘As citizens of the Western World, we should abhor the idea of recruiting gifted people from other countries. I also doubt that there’s any need to try because all significant steps of human history happened in Europe, and only Europeans or their descendants achieved them. ’
‘Birth control can be done by sterilizing those with deficient genes. Those with good genes will be sterilized when the number of 5 children has been reached.’