A certain Dr. Heyde, Nazi war criminal

Heyde as art by Gerhard RichterWerner Heyde was chief administrator of “Aktion T4“, the Nazi involuntary euthanasia program that killed an estimated 350,000 people between 1939 and 1945.

After the war, the good doctor lived unnoticed under the false name Dr. med. Fritz Sawade in Flensburg, working as a neurologist and expert legal witness. His true identity was only revealed by chance and after a brief attempt to flee he turned himself in voluntarily on 12 November 1959. In 1964, just days before he was put on trial for crimes against humanity, Heyde-Sawade committed suicide.

Image: “Mr. Heyde” a 1965 “blurred photo painting” by Gerhard Richter.sold for US$2.6 mill. by Christie’s of New York in 2006. Something creepy about the art, the purchaser, and the price tag, methinks.

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