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Long suppressed report sheds light on Canada’s “Open Door Policy” for Nazi war criminals

Important new information continues to emerge about how the Canadian state provided safe haven to Nazis and Nazi collaborators who were involved in the Holocaust and Hitler’s war of annihilation against the Soviet Union.

On February 1, the Canadian government quietly declassified a further fourteen pages of an annex to the final 1986 report of the Deschenes Commission into War Criminals in Canada, most of which was suppressed until last summer.

Authored by Alti Rodal, “Nazi War Criminals in Canada: The Historical and Policy Setting from the 1940s to the Present” is a detailed, 619-page historical investigation of Canadian policy towards Nazi collaborators. With the latest release, most of the report is finally in the public domain—some 38 years after it was submitted and following the deaths of virtually all those it investigated.

What remains redacted and off-limits is notable, however. This includes the true identities of the alleged Nazi collaborators themselves, their numbers, and information detailing Canadian government cooperation with US intelligence.

A trained historian and senior government bureaucrat who was born in 1944 in western Ukraine to Holocaust survivors, Alti Rodal was the Director of Historical Research for the Deschenes Commission.


Pierre Trudeau and the Nazi accomplice “Subject F

{The newly released pages of her report detail the 1967 refusal of then Justice Minister (later Prime Minister) Pierre Elliott Trudeau, the father of current Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, to support extradition to the USSR of a Nazi collaborator who had been chief of a Latvian police station during WWII. Admitted to Canada in 1948 and protected for decades by the Canadian state, the person identified in Rodal’s report only as “Subject F” was Haralds Petrovich Puntulis. He was accused of involvement in the murders of 15,000 partisans, Jews and Gypsies, and the enslavement of many others, and was convicted in 1965 in absentia by the USSR’s Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic.[1]

A 1965 External Affairs document, cited by Rodal, described Puntulis as “an ardent Nazi lackey, not only cooperating actively with the occupying German forces but actually serving their Jewish and Gypsy extermination squads.”

Despite the fact that “there was indeed evidence against Subject F” the elder Trudeau refused to extradite Puntulis, as “similar steps might be taken against any persons who had obtained a certificate of citizenship if it were found he had not disclosed occurrences in his past…”

Other still secret annexes to the Deschenes Commission report contain the records of more than 700 such persons, including wartime leaders of fascist Slovakia, Hungary and Yugoslavia, and German SS officers, all of whom were admitted to Canada after WWII and protected by the Canadian state. Rodal’s report contains coded references to Subjects “A” through “Z”.

Justin Trudeau’s government has faced mounting pressure to make a complete disclosure of the state’s historical relationship with Nazi war criminals since the entire Canadian Parliament gave a standing ovation to Yaroslav Hunka, a volunteer for the notorious Ukrainian-manned 14th Galizien Division of the Waffen SS.

Taken together, the release of the Rodal report and the continuing scandal over the official state tribute paid to the Nazi Yaroslav Hunka point to a fundamental truth: Canadian state collaboration with outright fascist forces continues to this day. In Ukraine, the government of the younger Trudeau is arming and politically supporting the ideological descendants of the Nazi war criminals protected by the elder Trudeau, and by previous Prime Ministers.

Last week it was exposed that the Trudeau government lied when it claimed in September 2023 that it was unaware of who Yaroslav Hunka was. In fact, Hunka had received a personal invitation from the Prime Minister’s Office, at the suggestion of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC), with which, as we have detailed in the World Socialist Web Site series, “Canadian Imperialism’s Fascist Friends” , Ottawa has worked for decades. This included providing safe haven to the Nazis’ Ukrainian accomplices, helping them whitewash their crimes. Subsequently, the Ottawa-backed UCC promoted an extreme right-wing, virulently anti-communist and anti-Russian Ukrainian nationalism that glorifies the Nazi collaborator and pogromist Stepan Bandera.

Not a single paper has named Puntulis, or revisited his alleged crimes. This is because the Canadian state has a great deal more to hide.}

{Deschenes demurred that “the Commission will leave it to professional historians to examine the reasons which may explain this lack of interest on the part not only of successive governments, but of the people themselves,” in the prosecution of war criminals in Canada.

This deeply cynical statement, which attempts to blame the Canadian working class for the political complicity of the ruling class, was made with full knowledge of how the Canadian state rapidly relaxed its policy on the admission of those who fought for the Nazis and did so voluntarily.}

Canada’s post-war “Nazi Open Door” policy

You might find the list of important interest. It resembles that of ours in the US. These are people who over time became influential in your social structure, more so today, that overwhelmingly support your ruling class and hold your politicians hostage to particular policies. Such as using your national treasure to support and fund the fascism in Ukraine today and the genocidal war that has been raging for nearly 10 years now. I'd be interested in more information of the scientific and tech aspects though. Bio labs with that? Experiments on citizens or military members?

{Likewise, Deschenes infamously exonerated all of the members of the Ukrainian 14th Waffen SS Galizien Division, at least 3000 of whom entered Canada.}

William_Mary 8 Feb 12
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Most shameful Canadain moment.

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