With so much emphasis on escape and evasion over the Pyrenees and from the French coast directly to England, the role of neutral Switzerland risks being overlooked. This part of the website seeks to, at least partially, remedy that omission. See the following:
- Websites about Switzerland During World War II
- B-17 Museum: https://www.b17museum.ch/news_e.php?id=88
- WWII Internment Camp Survivors Honored 70 Years Later: https://www.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/484456/world-war-ii-internme/
- “The Last Chance” (“Die Letze Chance”), full-length film by MGM Intl. with evadees in the cast. English subtitles. https://www.b17museum.ch/news_e.php?id=103
- Wikipedia article, Switzerland During the World Wars.
- Wikipedia article, Swiss Neutrality.
- War History Online, How Did Switzerland Manage to Remain Neutral During World War II?
- Frontline (PBS), The Sinister Face of Neutrality, The Role of Swiss Financial Institutions in the Plunder of European Jewry.
- History of Switzerland, Switzerland’s Role in World War II.
- History is Now, Was Switzerland Neutral or a Nazi Ally in World War II?
2. Description of the situation in Switzerland by Rolf Zaugg, owner of the B-17 Museum, Utzenstorf, Switzerland, in an email to the webmaster, :
5. Books at least partially about escape and evasion via Switzerland: Click here on this website for a list with descriptions of the books and their jacket covers. Suggestions for additions to the list are welcome. See also the book list on the website of the Swiss Internees Association at https://swissinternees.tripod.com/books.html. And also the bibliography, beginning on pg. 332, of the doctoral dissertation by Dwight S. Mears, Interned or Imprisoned?: The Successes and Failures of International Law in the Treatment of American Internees in Switzerland, 1943-45. See also article in the AFEES Newsletter about the Swiss Internees Association, ” Swiss Internees group founder and president just kept right on flying”, June 2011, pg. 9.
6. AFEES Newsletter Articles about Switzerland. To view the articles, click here to be directed to the list of pdf files of past AFEES newsletters. Scroll down to the issue you want to view from the list below and click on it to open it.
- “Dan Tells of Life in a Swiss Prison,” – March 1997, pg. 18
- Book Duel of Aviators–Duel of Diplomats, by Ernest Wetter (in French) is about the air war between Germans and Swiss, Sept. 1997, pg. 25.
- “French Honor an Accidental Crew” by Roger Anthoine, Aviateurs – Pietons
vers la Suisse, 1940-1945, September (Fall) 2003, pg. 4-5;
- “Hiking to Switzerland via the Alps” – December (Winter) 2000, pg. 8-9; (reproduced below).
- Looking for Swiss Helper – Sam E. Woods – Spring 1989, Part 2, pg. 12;
- “The Truth About Swiss Internees” – Winter 1990-91, pg. 16-17; (reproduced below).
- Harold L. Cook – crosses into Switzerland – March 2002, pg. 1;
- “Swiss Internees Group Gets Together in Florida” – Winter (Dec.) 2004-5, pg. 1.
- Switzerland – Summer 1989, pg. 5; June (Summer) 2003, pg. 26;
7. Swiss Internees Association, Inc. Their website at https://swissinternees.tripod.com/ is very informative and includes stories of 19 interned airmen, a book list, and links of interest . Below is an article, “The Truth About Swiss Internees,” from the Winter 1990 AFEES Newsletter, written by Robert A. Long, President of the Swiss Internees Association. Click on the article to enlarge it. (Or go to the Winter 1990 newsletter’s pdf file , pages 16-17 on this website, to view it.)
8. Article from AFEES Newsletter, “Hiking to Switzerland Via the Alps” (click on the image to enlarge it)
9. Maps of Escape Lines Using Switzerland
The map below of the Dutch-Paris Line escape routes appears in the following book: Megan Koreman, Gewone helden: de Dutch-Paris ontsnappingslijn 1942-1945, Amsterdam: Boom Uitgevers, 2016, and in an English translation, The Escape Line, How the Ordinary Heroes of Dutch-Paris Resisted the Nazi Occupation of Western Europe, Oxford University Press, 2018. It is copyrighted and may not be duplicated without permission of the publisher. It is reproduced here with the kind permission of the author.
Maps Showing Evasion Via Switzerland
The two following maps appeared on pages 65 and 79, respectively, in Achtung! Achtung! Die Flugfestungen Kommen! (Attention! Attention! The Flying Fortresses are Coming!), Memoirs of WW-II, by Lt. Col. John M. Carah, edited by Warren B. Carah, and published by Elbow Lane Books, Brighton, MI, 2006. Our thanks to Warren B. Carah for permitting us to reproduce them here.
Evasion Route of 2nd Lt. John M. Carah
Evasion Route of 2nd Lt. Ralph Bruce
10. “Chronology of the arrivals of evaders” (“Chronologie des arrives d’evadeurs”) from “Aviateurs Pietons vers la Suisse, 1940-1945″ by Roger Anthoine, Editions Secavia, Geneva, Switzerland, 1997. The chronology, on pages 361-366 of the book, groups the evaders by when they arrived in Switzerland. The breakdown is as follows:
- 1940 4
- 1941 4
- 1942 18
- 1943 118
- 1944 124
- 1945 18
- Undetermined 37
- TOTAL 323
The names of the 323 individuals have been added to the Index to Evaders on this website. Roger Anthoine’s list of evaders, pp. 361-366, is as appears below. Our thanks to Mr. Serge Cruchet, publisher of Editions Secavia, which published Mr. Anthoine’s book, for permission to reproduce the list here and to add the names to this website’s Index to Evaders.
11. New Books About Escape and Evasion Through Switzerland
a. Holden, Norman W., The Lucky Seven, www.normanholdenbooks.com, 2023. The author wrote this book on behalf of his father-in-law, the late Mr. James J. Goebel, Jr., a B-24 pilot, who was also an AFEES member and organization director. Published on June 1, 2023, The Lucky Seven tells the story of James’ journey in 1944 after having being shot down over Europe. He reaches freedom thanks to brave resistance fighters in Belgium and France. The author says that “researching this book took several years and was truly a labor of love and includes stories from his fellow airmen and the Europeans who ensured his path back to safety. So, I’m extremely proud to bring his incredible true story to life.” To contact the author, write to him at email@example.com.
- Brinkhurst, Donald
- Goebel, James J., Jr.
- Holton, Jack W.
- Pavelka, Joseph
- Solomon, Phillip
- Tucker, Robert C.
- Westerlund, Charles H.