The “Eslabón Perdido” Expedition will seek to identify a submarine sunken in Argentine waters.

A maritime operation seeking to identify a submarine sunken in Argentine waters and discovered by the Agrupación Eslabón Perdido group (The Missing Link) is set to begin next April 9, using underwater cameras equipped with ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) technology, according to the authorization issued by the Argentine Naval Prefecture that allows filming the entire hull of the vessel, which lies at a depth of 28 meters and at 4 kilometers offshore from the city of Necochea. 

The operation may lead to findings that can possibly challenge our understanding of world history over the last 80 years.

Financed and promoted by the Reitich Foundation in conjunction with Agrupación Eslabón Perdido, the operation will be conducted by Deepwater, a specialized Argentinean company, and led by the engineer Carlos Pane. It will consist of taking pictures of the entire hull, which measures 80 meters in length, using 2 ROVs. The vessels used for this operation will be Kona (license No. 0316) and Calipso (license No. 03220), both based in the port of Quequén. The resulting images will be analyzed by a Technical Evaluation Commission consisting of the engineers Hernán Sotero González (Eslabón Perdido), Jorge Pereda (Necochea) and Martín Canevaro (former president of the Professional Council of Naval Engineering). Naval Engineer Canevaro and his colleague Andrés Cuidet conducted the initial inspection that determined the wreck does not correspond to a sunken ship, but rather confirmed that the remains are more likely those of a submarine. The scientific technical supervision has been entrusted to Dr. Fabio Bisciotti, a naval submarine expert from the Italian Naval League, who after a second examination confirmed it is indeed a German submarine from WWII, and recommended further images be taken in order to identify it beyond doubt. Bisciotti also established that the hull was deliberately scuttled using explosives, possibly in an attempt to erase traces of the arrival of the fugitive Uboat in Argentina. Since this would constitute overwhelming proof of an event related to a criminal act, the renowned Chilean analyst and criminal investigator Gilberto Opazo has also been summoned to join the expedition.

Referential Image of the ‘U 995 Laboe’, which is located in the ‘Naval German Museum’

Germany claims the wreck does not belong to it

Despite the existence of signs pointing to the Third Reich origin of the vessel, the German embassy in Buenos Aires claims there is no evidence in that respect. Moreover, after inspection work conducted in Germany, Officer Constanza Corinagrato, head of the Politics and Human Rights Section of the German embassy, officially informed Eslabón Perdido that “after multiple probes we can inform you that, for the moment, there is no evidence that the wreck is a German submarine wreck. Therefore, we can assume that we are not the owners of this wreck.”

Last year, Dr. Ariel Gelbung, Director of The Simon Wiesenthal Center Latin America, urged the former Argentine national authorities to collaborate with the investigation. In this sense, Dr. Gelbung said “in situations where the government remains silent on a specific issue, such as the recent discovery of what may be a WWII submarine, it is crucial for the government to respond to any concerns raised, regardless of any historical, political, or financial constraints.  Failing to do so only fuels speculation and suspicion.”

The expedition is the fruition of an agreement between Agrupación Eslabón Perdido and the Reitich Foundation, an entity that has the unveiling of Nazi activities during and after the War among its objectives. “I am very excited to help uncover the truth by supporting the Eslabón Perdido Expedition,” said Chilean-American entrepreneur Philippe Reitich Baron, the entity’s founder. When news of the discovery surfaced in 2022, the wreckage was incorporated into the nautical charts of the Argentine Naval Hydrographic Service under the tag “sunken hull”, but without identifying the name of the vessel. The Eslabón Perdido (The Missing Link) project –a name that makes reference to a phantom submarine whose voyage to Argentina was never officially recorded– was declared a matter of Public Interest by the deliberative councils of Lobería (Ordinance No. 2495-2021) and Necochea (Municipal Decree No. 470/21), both municipalities of the Buenos Aires province located in the vicinity of the wreck. At present, and not without bureaucratic delays, a project is being discussed in the Argentine Senate (File S-87/23) that seeks to declare the investigation a matter of public interest.

Agrupación Eslabón Perdido & Reitich Foundation 
Press Release, April 2, 2024.