Juan Perón was born in Lobos, Argentina, on October 8, 1895. Trained as a military officer, Perón rose to political power following a coup. While training as a military officer Perón served as an attaché to Chile and traveled to Italy to observe the development of the Fascist state in 1938-1940. Returning to Argentina in 1941; Perón joined a secret group of military officers called the Grupo de Oficiales Unidos. In 1943, he participated in a coup to overthrow the civilian government of Argentina, taking the position of secretary of labor and social welfare in the new regime. Rising to the rank of minister of war, then vice president between the years of 1944 and 1945. In 1946, he was elected president of Argentina. Perón's administration promoted industrialization and government intervention, Perón promoted a "Third Way" that was neither capitalism nor communist. Perón favored the Nazis believing the communist Soviet Union was a far greater threat in the long run than fascist Germany. Perón, along with members of the catholic church, feared the rise of communism and foresaw a future war between the USA and USSR. He viewed Nazis as allies in possible future conflicts.
Despite an official position of neutrality during world war II the Argentine government actively supported Nazi Germany during the war, and after Perón's regime would offer a safe haven to Nazis. Nazi collaborators formed in Argentina and worked with the Perón government to organize the emigration of Nazis to Argentina. Members of the group frequently travelled to Europe to look for, and bring back more of the fugitives. Perón dispatched agents to Europe; primarily, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, and Scandinavia. These agents of Perón had orders to facilitate the travel of Nazis and collaborators to Argentina. Once arriving in Argentina, they were given money and jobs. Some of the more notable Nazis included Josef Mengele, Adolf Eichmann and his adjutant Franz Stangl, Eduard Roschmann, Erich Priebke, and Klaus Barbie.