London: Soviet leader Josef Stalin wanted to imprison and torture Nazis in secret after the end of World War II in revenge for Germany's betrayal of Russia, a new book has claimed.
   
The book, titled 'The Diplomatic Secrets of the Third Reich', details how Soviet secret agents kidnapped Nazi diplomats after World War II so that they could imprison, torture and secretly try them in Moscow.
   
In fact, the book draws on hitherto sealed Russian archives concerning the dreaded Lubianka jail in Moscow where the former top servants of German leader Adolf Hitler were brought.
   
Alexei Matweyewitsch Sidnyew was the General in Soviet intelligence tasked in the early summer of 1945 to exact vengeance on Stalin's behalf against the diplomats he believed plotted the war against Russia, says the book.
   
Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union had a pact that kept the peace until Hitler decided to invade the country in June 1941. By war's end, 27 million Soviet citizens were dead and many of her major cities in ruins.
   
Stalin believed the foreign office diplomats who served Nazis were responsible for the war. Consequently, he wanted to take revenge.

The book, penned by WS Christoforow, chronicles how Stalin issued directive 143c with a list of top Nazi diplomats he wanted seized. Foreign Minister under Hitler, Joachim von Ribbentrop, was at the top but he was seized by the western Allies, tried at Nuremberg, and hanged for war crimes.
   
But by August 1945, barely three months after the war had ended, Stalin was cabled by Sidnyew informing him 374 diplomats had been seized in Germany and other European states occupied by the Red Army.
   
Fritz Grobb, Hitler's envoy in Baghdad, Carl Clodius, his special representative in Romania, Herbert von Richthofen and Adolf-Heinz Beckerle, both paladins of Third Reich in Bulgaria, together with many military attaches and ambassadors were seized and sentenced to 25 years in the gulag work camps.
   
The book also chronicles their pleas for mercy - and of the secret manoeuvring of the foreign service to help Hitler in his conquest of Europe.

Agencies