LGBT Rights

Neo-Nazi Alleged to Work in Lithuanian Economy Ministry Didn’t Like DH’s Report on Vilnius Conference



VILNIUS—The pseudonymous neo-Nazi blogger “Zeppelinus,” long alleged to be the alias of a high official in the Ministry of the Economy (DH still awaits a reply to our open letter of 2013 to the relevant minister), is notorious for his racist, antisemitic, and homophobic images that continue to needlessly damage Lithuania’s good name (sampling at end of article). This web journal’s editor has long been one of his many photoshop and  photofake targets, naturally a source of pride for any and all within Vilnius’s bona fide human rights community. As some Lithuanian human rights activists put it, “If you didn’t make it into Zeppelinus’s sicko gallery, you’re not really doing enough for human rights in this country.”

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What Did President of Lithuania Say, When Latvian Journalist asked about LGBT Rights?



H U M A N   R I G H T S   /   L G B T   R I G H T S

by Lithuanian LGBT Rights Organization / LGL

Reposted from the LGL site with permission

A Latvian journalist has felt the wrath of the Lithuanian president after asking several questions that “have not been agreed upon.” The president insistently, and rather gracelessly, refused to answer questions about LGBT* rights in Lithuania.

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Purveyor of Racist, Misogynist, Antisemitic, Homophobic, Nazist “Art” is Alleged to Work in Lithuania’s Economy Ministry



VILNIUS—Defending History has still had no reply to its open letter of August 2013 to the Minister of the Economy, asking him to look into multiple media reports that the pseudonymous “Zeppelinus,” Lithuania’s best-known purveyor of hate-popart on the internet is indeed a senior civil servant in his own ministry. The issue came to the fore once again in recent weeks with his “appeal” to the head of the Jewish community, and his latest production following a recent controversial conference (conference report).

The following are samples of his “art” in the service of racism, misogyny, homophobia, antisemitism alongside glorification of Nazism. Samples can readily be found for other prejudices, including anti-Polish and anti-Russian hate. Hopefully human rights organizations will continue to counter such materials, first and foremost by establishing, in partnership with law enforcement, the identity of the purveyor of the hate materials, and the answer to the question about alleged continued high employment in a government ministry. An earlier smaller sampling with full translation is available here. Full disclosure: This journal’s editor has on occasion been a target of Mr. Zeppelinus, too.

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Posted in Antisemitism & Bias, Human Rights, LGBT Rights, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, Media Watch, News & Views, Opinion, Russian Speakers' Personal Status, UŽGAVĖNĖS (SHROVETIDE), Women's Rights | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Purveyor of Racist, Misogynist, Antisemitic, Homophobic, Nazist “Art” is Alleged to Work in Lithuania’s Economy Ministry

Member of Red-Brown Commission and Trasher of Yiddish Dissidents is Appointed to Council of Europe’s “Commission against Racism and Intolerance” (ECRI)



O P I N I O N

VILNIUS—Waves of shock laced with the “actual” human rights community’s usual black humor undulated through the different struggling branches of that community this week as the Council of Europe announced the appointment of one of the most multiply-titled intellectuals of modern Lithuania (or Europe), Prof. Dr. S. Liekis, as a new member of the Commission Against Racism and Intolerance (CARI). Professor Liekis is professor at Vilnius University, Romeris University, Vytautas Magnus University, and a crack member of the government’s red-brown commission, formally known by its somewhat Orwellian name, The International Commission for the Evaluation of the Crimes of the Nazi and Soviet Occupation Regimes in Lithuania. The local term “actual human rights” community in Lithuania refers to those who monitor and publicly post on issues, as opposed to those on endless government and EU budgets who are sometimes accused of covering up issues and shirking from anything that is not nationalist PR meant for naive Westerners.


One immediate opportunity presents itself. CARI and the Council of Europe could quickly make clear their view of the Lithuanian government’s decision to allow an SS banner with a swastika to be foisted at the nation’s Parliament (the Seimas) for over an hour on the nation’s hallowed independence day, 11 March 2015. Reports on the day, which funded human rights organizations here generally failed to monitor, in Defending History and on the website of the Jewish Community of Lithuania.


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Homophobic Draft Laws on Lithuanian Parliament’s Spring Agenda



H U M A N   R I G H T S   /   L G B T   R I G H T S

by Lithuanian LGBT Rights Organization / LGL

Reposted from the LGL site with permission

On the 19th of March, 2015, the spring work agenda of the Parliament of the Republic of Lithuania (the Seimas) was approved. First, it contains a long list of initiatives seeking to limit LGBT* rights.

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Zeppelinus Issues a New Hate Poster in Vilnius



Latest Poster from “Zeppelinus” Who is Alleged to be High Official at Lithuania’s Economy Ministry

NEWEST EFFORT MOCKS LOVE OF COUNTRY BY ROMA,  LEFTISTS,  JEWS,  BLACKS,  POLES AND LGBT.  SELECTION OF EARLIER PRODUCTIONS HERE.  “FULL DISCLOSURE” — HE HAS ALSO DEDICATED MONTAGES TO DH EDITOR.

Lithuania for Everyone. But where, then, is the country of the Lithuanians?” The signs read “I am Lithuania” with symbols interpolated, based on the actual sign (center) carried by head of the Union of Jewish Students at last Wednesday’s neo-Nazi march in central Vilnius.

Will the “Human Rights Monitoring Institute” maintain its usual silence? Where are The Bagels?

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Lithuanian Parliamentarian Threatens Violence against LGBT Rights Leader, Accuses Him of “Speaking with an Accent”



H U M A N   R I G H T S   /   L G B T   R I G H T S

by Lithuanian LGBT Rights Organization / LGL

Reposted from the LGL site with permission

On January 18th, 2015, a member of the Lithuanian Parliament (the Seimas), Algirdas Vaclovas Patackas publicly warned the Board Chair of the national LGBT human rights association LGL that the organization is “playing with fire” and that its activities might result in a “black, repulsive and totally unacceptable response” similar to what “happened in Paris.” The statement by the MP was issued as a response to the organization’s humorous suggestion to store 10-litas notes as LGBT souvenirs in the wake of the switchover to the euro on 1 January 2015.

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Lithuanian TV Nixes LGBT Rights Video, Again



L G B T   R I G H T S    /   H U M A N   R I G H T S

The following report appeared today on the LGL website, and is reposted here by permission of LGL.

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Two Parties in Lithuania’s Ruling Coalition Oppose LGBT Rights



The following report appeared today in LGL and is reposted by permission:

Representatives of two parties that are part of Lithuania’s ruling coalition, the Labour Party and Order and Justice, have expressed their views on LGBT issues to Lrt.lt. Deputy chairman of the Lithuanian Labour Party Kęstutis Daukšys was asked a question about the party’s short program, which states that members of the European Parliament representing the Labour Party are going to protect people from legislative initiatives coming from Europe that contradict the Lithuanian character.

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Lithuanian MP’s Gay-Bashing Hits New Low of Adolescent Unseemliness and Social Immaturity


VILNIUS — Observers of the sometimes eerie human rights scene here thought they had seen it all, or most of it, but an elected parliamentarian’s latest stunt was seen as a new setback for Lithuania’s image even by conservatives on social issues.

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Survey on Levels of Prejudice Among Lithuanian Military Brass and Troops


Delfi.lt reports that the Lithuanian Ministry of National Defense has received the results from a study they undertook to gauge prejudice among leadership and troops as compared to Lithuanian society at large.

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Open Letter to Evaldas Gustas, new Minister for the Economy in Lithuania



O P I N I O N

SAMPLE IMAGES

Background:

Original 2 May 2013 report; Person identified by the media submits 13 May 2013 complaint to the Press Commission [draft English translation], citing Anarchija.ltBalsas.ltKaunoŽinios.lt, Lrytas.lt as well as DefendingHistory.com. He does not deny the identification but disputes the characterization of his work as in harmony with neo-Nazism.

23 July update: Zeppelinus greets Baltic Pride with a new hate image.

Dear Mr. Gustas,

Congratulations on your recent appointment as Economy Minister. May your tenure be blessed with success, wisdom and good fortune for all of Lithuania’s citizens.

We address you on the advent of your tenure on a human rights matter rather than an economic question. We feel certain you would agree that there is a demonstrable correlation between the long-term successful economies of the world and free and open democratic societies that reject all forms of state-supported fascism, racism, antisemitism, homophobia and other forms of hate and exclusionism directed at segments of the population.

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Zeppelinus, Unmasked as Official at Lithuania’s Ministry for the Economy, Posts New Gay-Hate Image to “Welcome” Baltic Pride Week



O P I N I O N

by Dovid Katz

The leading neo-Nazi blogger in Lithuania, “Zeppelinus,” who was unmasked several months ago by a number of publications as a high official at the Ministry for the Economy and chairman of the nation’s Tripartite Commission, did not deny the identification.

Instead, quite incredibly, he complained to the press commission against those who would dare deem to be unacceptable his hateful racist, antisemitic, homophobic and pro-fascist productions.

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LGBT Equality Issues Statement after Baltic Pride March is Banned in Central Vilnius



The following statement was issued today by For LGBT Equality:

Vilnius Municipal Authorities Ban Upcoming Baltic Pride 2013 March for Equality

2013 06 27

Vilnius Municipal Authorities Ban Upcoming Baltic Pride 2013 March for EqualityOn 26 June 2013 the Vilnius municipal authorities refused to allow the Baltic Pride 2013 March for Equality through central Gedimino Avenue on 27 July 2013. The administration of Vilnius Municipality has declined not only the location, proposed by the organizers, but also the time and the form of the event, thus in effect banning the march all together. The Lithuanian Gay League is of a position that this decision amounts to the disproportionate and discriminatory limitation of the right to freedom of peaceful assembly for the local LGBT* community and is planning to appeal against this decision before the national courts once again.

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Two Members of Lithuanian Parliament Pass Antigay Proposals on First Reading



The following new item appeared today in For LGBT Equality:


 

On 21 May 2013 the Lithuanian Parliament accepted the  amendment to the Code of Administrative Violations by introducing administrative liability for “public denigration of constitutional moral values and of constitutional fundamentals of the family life, as well as organization of public events contravening public morality” (proposed by MP Petras Gražulis) and the amendment to the Law on the Fundamentals of Protection of the Rights of the Child stipulating that “every child has the natural right to a father and a mother, emanating from sex differences and mutual compatibility between motherhood and fatherhood” (proposed my MP Jonas Rimantas Dagys) for the parliamentary deliberation.
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The Neo-Nazis Hate the Feminists, Too



Protesters against ultranationalist groups must face police and prosecutors

O P I N I O N

by Lina Žigelytė

 

Lina Zigelyte

Lina Žigelytė

A spectre is haunting Lithuania — the spectre of feminism. All the powers of far-right Lithuania (this includes also far-rightists who know how to present themselves as center-right) have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre: puritans and watchful police officers, bloggers and self-described patriots.

The word “feminist” has become the most recent label to define the enemy of the state. This is because grassroots strategies — theatrical protests, DIY media, art projects, and solidarity with social minorities — are rapidly changing the landscape of local feminism. What is important, these strategies also invigorate the broader fight against neo-Nazism.

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The Homophobic Track Record of MEP Vytautas Landsbergis



O P I N I O N

by Anna Shepherd

Lithuanian conservative politician, former Head of the Lithuanian Parliament and current EPP Member of the European Parliament Vytautas Landsbergis has consistently expressed homophobic views and spoken out against initiatives to strengthen LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) rights in the European community, and particularly in Lithuania itself.

SEE ALSO:

LANDSBERGIS’S TRACK RECORD ON JEWISH ISSUES

ON THE GLORIFICATION OF LOCAL NAZI COLLABORATORS

Landsbergis expressed his views about LGBT rights unambiguously in his outlandish claim in 2010 that paedophilia is connected to homosexuality. This claim was made at a parliamentary hearing on the sexual abuse on children organised in the European Parliament. According to Landsbergis, children should be protected from “homosexual propaganda” and “homophilic [sic] paedophilia”. Landsbergis’ claims were condemned by Cecilia Malmström, the European Commissioner for Home Affairs; and the European Parliament’s Intergroup for LGBT Rights, which stated that it condemns paedophilia unreservedly, as do all recognized LGBT organizations worldwide.

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Zeppelinus Images Revealed as Media Claims he is a Government Official



Three Major Lithuanian Sites Claim that Neo-Nazi Internet Figure “Zeppelinus,” a Hater of Poles, Jews, Roma, Russians, Blacks and Gays is actually…

Director of the Economic Ministry’s Human Resources Dept and the Government’s Rep on the “Tripartite Council”

Samples of Zeppelinus’s hate images on the internet:

zeppelinus hasidic kid with gun

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Reports from Lithuanian Media Claim that Neo-Nazi “Zeppelinus” is Unmasked as — A Government Official!


Lrytas.lt today published an article by Martynas Čerkauskas, “Lithuanian Economics Ministry Accused of Nationalism” which follows this week’s exposés in Antifa.lt, Baltas.lt, and Kauno Žinios, which all imply or claim that the neo-Nazi internet “hero” who calls himself “Zeppelinus” is actually director of the Economic Ministry’s Expansion of Human Resources Department and a member of the Tripartite Council (labor, business and government), where he is the chief representative of the government’s interests.

UPDATE OF 15 JUNE 2013: See our Open Letter to the new economy minister with appendix of “Zeppelinus” images including English translations of text.

A sampling of images attributed to “Zeppelinus” is provided here.

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Lithuanian Authorities Continue to Play Games with this Summer’s Baltic Pride, Bringing Potential Ridicule to Launch of EU Presidency



The following news report appeared today in For LGBT Equality:


Forthcoming EU Presidency Capital Persistent in Banning Baltic Pride March on Central Avenue

On 24 April 2013 Vilnius authorities appealed to the Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania, indicating that, despite the judgment by the first instance court, the municipal authorities have the right to propose a location for a public assembly other than that demanded by the organizers. “The law does not provide an organizer with the right to choose the location for a gathering unconditionally,” the municipality claims in its statement.

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“Mixed” Court Ruling Leaves Uncertainty on Venue for Baltic Pride 2013 Parade in Vilnius


.LGL released the following statement in For LGBT Equality earlier today

The Lithuanian Gay League (LGL) today partially won its appeal against the decision of the Vilnius City Municipality to disallow the upcoming Baltic Pride march to be held on Gedimino Prospect, the main street of Vilnius. The Vilnius Regional Administrative Court ruled that the decision of the municipality was not legal.

The organizers of Baltic Pride and the municipality must now restart the process of negotiating the location for the Baltic Pride march.

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Upside-Down World? Neo-Nazi March Assisted by Police on Central Boulevard, While Authorities Try to Banish Baltic Pride Across the River….


 


O P I N I O N

Officially speaking, the annual neo-Nazi march on Lithuania’s independence day earlier this month, complete with swastikas, sieg heils and white power jackets, had been “moved” by the municipality from Vilnius’s central boulevard, Gedimino, to the rather less prestigious location across the river in Shnípishok (Šnipiškės), and the move was confirmed by the courts. But it was all a fiction. On the day, the police facilitated the neo-Nazis’ march up Gedimino as usual without the slightest hint of disapproval, let alone transfer to one of the bridges leading across the river. See our report, and the eyewitness accounts by Anna Shepherd and Geoff Vasil.

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Believe It Or Not: Lithuanian Parliament Honors Organizers of Neo-Nazi March in Central Vilnius


Reporting in today’s Lrytas.lt (Lietuvos rytas), Dovydas Pancerovas describes the parliamentary honors bestowed on organizers of last Monday’s March 11th neo-Nazi march on the main boulevard, Gedimino, of the nation’s capital, Vilnius (DH eyewitness reports by Anna Shepherd and Geoff Vasil; see also page 1 report). The following translation from the original Lithuanian is by Geoff Vasil.

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Committee on Human Rights Leaders “Skeptical” about Gay Rights!



O P I N I O N

by Anna Shepherd

Westerners looking at the political landscape of Lithuania should not be duped into thinking, as has been stated on this site before, that those sitting on a board for Jewish cemeteries are necessarily in it for their dedication to the Litvak heritage, or, as I am about to illustrate here, that those sitting in committees for defending equal rights are necessarily in favor of universal equal rights.

The question we need to examine is why someone opposed to equal rights would aim to become a spokesperson of those same rights. Membership of such a committee or board can in fact be a good opportunity to hijack a concept in order to hide certain failures and shortcomings and to tailor its meaning to fit certain political goals. This is what in my opinion is happening in the appointment of Leonard Talmont as Chair and Mantas Adomėnas as Deputy Chair of the Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights.

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LGBT Equality Protests Removal of July 2013 March from Vilnius’s Central Boulevard


LGBT Equality (the LGL — Lithuanian Gay League) today issued a statement on its website  urging the Vilnius municipality to change its heart over a decision to ban the Baltic Pride march from the capital’s center in the summer of 2013, just as Lithuania will proudly be assuming the rotating chairmanship of the European Union. The statement follows an earlier 16 January statement.

In the meantime, a nationalist website has announced that the March 11th 2013 neo-Nazi march will proceed on the capital’s central boulevard as always, irrespective of any requests from the municipality. The statement is signed by a former long-term high official of the Genocide Research Center who was involved in organizing various neo-Nazi marches and defending them publicly.Continue reading

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A Tale of Two Marches? LGBT Equality Releases Statement on Authorities’ Response to Baltic Pride 2013


LGBT Equality (the LGL — Lithuanian Gay League) today issued a statement on its website concerning the progress of the application to the Vilnius municipality to hold the Baltic Pride 2013 March for Equality on Gedimino Boulevard, the capital’s central avenue, on 27 July 2013.

In the meantime, the municipality, though it has requested that the neo-Nazi march planned for the nation’s March 11th independence day be moved from Gedimino Boulevard (where it has regularly been held since 2008 with participation of right-wing members of parliament and with few or no objections from Western embassies), seems not to be pursuing that request with any verve.

VILNIUS YEARS GONE BY:

Video of the first (2008) neo-Nazi march in the city center

Eyewitness account of 2010 Baltic Pride March across the river

Eyewitness account of 2011 Neo-Nazi March in the city center

Eyewitness account of 2012 Neo-Nazi March in the city center

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The Disquieting 2010-2012 Record of the American Embassy in Vilnius, Lithuania



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Samples of the Work of a Holocaust-Twisting, Antisemitic, Homophobic Envelope Designer


The following are among the envelopes designed by Antanas Šakalys who continues to be honored by his (other) works being exhibited at both Vilnius University and the Central Post Office in the Lithuanian capital. Details and further links.

These samples are categorized as follows:

1. Holocaust Distortion/Inversion (blaming of victims, honoring of perpetrators, defamation of historians).

2. Antisemitism.

3. Homophobia and Assault on Equal Rights.

4. Defamation of Lithuanian personalities who call for tolerance.

Holocaust Distortion/Inversion (blaming of victims, honoring of perpetrators, defamation of historians)

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Updates on the Šakalys Scandal: Central Post Office Website Still Features Biased Envelope-Maker


As of today, both Vilnius University and the Central Post Office are still featuring the “historic envelope art” of designer Antanas Šakalys, though neither of the prestigious venues publicly includes any samples of his antisemitic, Holocaust-distorting and homophobic output.

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Vilnius University Calls Antisemitic, Racist, Homophobic Artist “Humanistic” as 9 Young Lithuanians Protest; Yiddish Institute, US Backers, Bloomington-Borns — All Silent



O P I N I O N

A dedicated Facebook page provides facts and photos on today’s dignified and courageous demonstration by a small group of young Lithuanian human rights advocates against Vilnius University’s proceeding with an exhibition of an envelope designer whose work features flagrant antisemitic, homophobic and racist material (larger selection here).

Fiokla Kiure’s images of the event are available here; a small selection  follows this article.

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A Detective Story about an Exhibit at Vilnius University: Jews are Upset, Leftists Protesting, University in Disarray



by Eglė Samoškaitė

Translation of Ms. Samoškaitė’s Lithiuanian article that appeared in today’s Delfi.lt.

www.DELFI.lt

Representatives from New Left organization were angered by an exhibit of envelope art by graphic artist Antanas Šakalys scheduled to go on display at Vilnius University library because the artist earlier had used antisemitic and homophobic illustrations on envelopes.

Dovid Katz, who was born in America but lives in Lithuania, published on his website Defendinghistory.com several of Šakalys’s envelopes which human rights experts characterized as antisemitic.

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Vilnius University to Host Exhibit by Antisemitic, Homophobic “Envelope Artist”


According to Vilnius University’s website, a ceremony to open an exhibition of “envelope art” by Antanas Šakalys will be held in the White Hall of the university’s main library on 27 September at 2 PM. Mr. Šakalys’s antisemitic postcards were on sale for many years at the capital’s main Post Office, and were exposed in 2008 by the Jewish community’s newspaperJerusalem of Lithuania.

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Landsbergis. Then and Now.



O P I N I O N

by Dovid Katz

 

Vytautas Landsbergis is one of the giants of the twentieth century. Along with Poland’s Lech Wałęsa and then-Czechoslovakia’s Václav Havel, Landsbergis led his people from foreign domination to freedom and democracy. Nothing these gentlemen might later on have said or done to their own legacies, particularly in the subsequent century, can detract from their singular achievements in contributing to the downfall of the Soviet Union and the freedom of the subjugated nations on its western periphery.

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Neo-Nazi Youth Organization is Admitted into National “Lithuanian Council of Youth Organizations” (a recipient of European Union “Structural Funds”)


The Union of Lithuanian Nationalist Youth (ULNY), one of the organizers of the annual neo-Nazi march in the center of Vilnius on the nation’s independence day, has been made a member of  the Lithuanian Council of Youth Organizations, a body that is a recipient of European Union structural funds as well as Lithuanian government funding.

Media reports confirm that at the national conference last weekend, there were no votes against granting the ULNY full membership in the nationwide umbrella organization of accredited youth groups eligible for state funding. The vote was 19 in favor, zero against with seven abstentions.

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Some Psycho-Sexual Undercurrents of the Lithuanian Independence Day Nazi March



O P I N I O N

by Geoff Vasil

 

Back in 2008 a friend and I put subtitles to the march by Lithuanian neo-Nazis through the capital, Vilnius, on independence day, and put the video with subtitles up on YouTube. Back then there was almost zero mention of the march where openly fascist youth chanted slogans about attacking and killing Jews and Russians, and the de rigueur “Juden raus.” Following the YouTube posting and as news travelled around the world, certain Lithuanian media figures and politicians felt the need to at least say something. Not much, but something.

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Posted in "Vilnius Jewish Public Library", Antisemitism & Bias, Celebrations of Fascism, Events, Geoff Vasil, Humor (Of Sorts), LGBT Rights, Neo-Nazi & Fascist Marches, News & Views, Opinion, Politics of Memory, Vilnius Neo-Nazi Marches | Comments Off on Some Psycho-Sexual Undercurrents of the Lithuanian Independence Day Nazi March

300 Neo-Nazis March through the Center of Kaunas on Lithuanian Independence Day; They are Addressed by Members of Parliament



E Y E W I T N E S S    R E P O R T  /  O P I N I O N

by Dovid Katz

With attention focused on the government-permission-granted central Vilnius neo-Nazi march slated for Lithuania’s March 11th independence day — now the subject of an international petition on Change.org — there was minimal foreign interest in today’s independence day neo-Nazi march and demonstration in central Kaunas, Lithuania’s second city. The March 11th independence day marks the date in 1990 when Lithuania declared independence from the Soviet Union. Today’s holiday is on the date of the 1918 declaration of independence which heralded the rise of the modern Lithuanian state in the twentieth century. Both dates are revered by the country’s diverse minorities and factions. They represent freedom from oppression and foreign domination, and celebrate the building of a free and democratic state.

But in recent years, both dates have been hijacked by neo-Nazi groups in the heart of the country’s major cities, with the support of some members of parliament and leading political figures. There is, moreover, the proverbial blind eye of much or most of the elite classes, which serves as a contributing catalyst.

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Posted in Antisemitism & Bias, Celebrations of Fascism, Dovid Katz, Free Speech & Democracy, Human Rights, Kaunas Neo-Nazi Marches, LGBT Rights, Neo-Nazi & Fascist Marches, News & Views, Opinion, Politics of Memory, US State Dept Manipulated? | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 300 Neo-Nazis March through the Center of Kaunas on Lithuanian Independence Day; They are Addressed by Members of Parliament

Tolerance March of 100 is Cancelled in Kaunas; Neo-Nazi March for 1000 Going Ahead


In a decision with a surreal touch of a topsy-turvy world, Kaunas municipal authorities have announced that they are on “security grounds” revoking the permit for a pro-human rights  march with a maximum of one hundred people. The march had been permitted for 4 PM this Thursday, 16 February, in the center of Kaunas, Lithuania’s second city. It was conceived in part as a response to the neo-Nazi march which has a permit for a maximum of one thousand people at 1 PM the same day.

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Posted in Antisemitism & Bias, Bold Citizens Speak Out, Celebrations of Fascism, Human Rights, Kaunas Neo-Nazi Marches, LGBT Rights, Neo-Nazi & Fascist Marches, News & Views | Tagged , | Comments Off on Tolerance March of 100 is Cancelled in Kaunas; Neo-Nazi March for 1000 Going Ahead

A Conference for Tolerance Day


 


O P I N I O N

by Geoff Vasil

On Wednesday, November 16th 2011, the Tolerance Center in Vilnius hosted a conference called: Tolerance and Totalitarianism. Challenges to Freedom.

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Posted in "Jewish" Events as Cover?, Double Games, Events, Geoff Vasil, LGBT Rights, News & Views, Opinion, Politics of Memory, Simon Gurevich (Simonas Gurevičius), United States | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on A Conference for Tolerance Day

Cartoon of The Jew and The Gay Holding Up (Controlling) the World is Back in Town


The infamous cartoon of The Jew and The Gay holding up the world was featured in Respublika and other mass circulation newspapers in Lithuania in 2004, and again from 2009. See our reports here, here and here. It came back to the newspaper today.

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MEP Donskis challenges attacks on European Parliament’s queries on Lithuanian Parliament’s homophobic legislation


In a new essay, published in Lithuanian on 2 February , and in English on 7 February 2011, MEP Professor Leonidas Donskis takes to task Lithuanian commentators and politicians who have attacked the European Parliament for daring to criticize proposed new homophobic legislation making its way through the Lithuanian Parliament. He also takes note of the unfortunate role of state security services in realms they should have nothing to do with in an EU democracy, while bemoaning their total lack of concern with politicians and their top advisors who flirt openly with neo-Nazi ideology and policies. He writes: ‘Perhaps it is time to worry about the stench from the rising tide of fascist ideas and interpretations of history in our political life and media instead.’  Full text here.

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Who Got Stupid, the European Parliament or Us?



O P I N I O N

by Leonidas Donskis

The European Parliament recently reacted by way of a resolution to a piece of draft legislation by a member of the parliament of the Republic of Lithuania, Petras Gražulis. If enacted, his legislation would have de jure expelled from public life homosexual citizens in the country. Since then, several comments  have already rung out in our public space in Lithuania, whose essence, despite differences in levels of nuance, is similar: that the European Parliament is allegedly interfering too minutely and grandly in the affairs of the Republic of Lithuania; that it is allegedly violating the principle of subsidiarity; that it is applying double standards because it was so careful in commenting upon the sins of France in the sphere of human rights but ruthlessly attacks the new member states, first and foremost Lithuania.

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Posted in EU, Free Speech & Democracy, Human Rights, Leonidas Donskis, LGBT Rights, News & Views, Opinion | Comments Off on Who Got Stupid, the European Parliament or Us?

Lithuania and Tolerance



O P I N I O N

by Geoff Vasil

2010 was an astonishing year for human rights in Lithuania. Toward the beginning of 2010 there were public demonstrations in the capital by self-designated patriotic youth, decked out in various paramilitary costumes, in plain clothes bearing variations on swastikas and wearing white arm bands. These Lithuanian neo-Nazis marched across the main streets and squares in Vilnius on independence day (March 11th), made a showing to protest against a silent march of people from the main square to a cemetery to honor the dead on Soviet Victory Day (May 9th), and most spectacularly managed to outnumber 10 to 1 Lithuania’s first gay pride march (May 8th) with a violent mob throwing objects, hurtling insults and proudly waving flags with pseudo-swastikas behind police lines. The gay pride march almost didn’t happen, as it hadn’t many years in a row, because of bureaucratic impedance from the Vilnius municipality over issuing a permit and from law enforcement and the parliament. The neo-Nazi marches, on the other hand, had support from within parliament, MPs who personally asked for, and got, permits from the city for a march. Several MPs also came to the anti-gay pride protest with bullhorns, stormed police barriers and generally foamed at the mouth, caught on camera.

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Neo-Nazis, Protected by Police, flaunt Swasticals near Reval Lietuva Hotel During Baltic Pride Parade


BNS summary here. Video here. The state prosecution service that continues to  ‘investigate for war crimes’ Holocaust survivors who joined the anti-Nazi resistance, and passes over neo-Nazi marches in utter silence, tried hard (but failed) to stop the May 8th Baltic Pride Tolerance march in Vilnius. 


OUR EYEWITNESS REPORT: 

After being refused entry into the actual Baltic Pride marchers’ area, on grounds that we did not have individual permits, we were directed to the plaza between the Reval Lietuva Hotel and the CUP department store where we were told the march’s concluding point could be observed. There, police eagerly directed visitors and sympathisers into an ‘observation area’ just below on a grassy hillside. It soon became evident that while limiting the formal numbers of Baltic Pride participants, the police were shepherding visitors into an area occupied by neo-fascists and bolstering their apparent numbers.

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Posted in "Vilnius Jewish Public Library", Antisemitism & Bias, Celebrations of Fascism, Collaborators Glorified, Events, Human Rights, LGBT Rights, Neo-Nazi & Fascist Marches, News & Views, Symbology | Comments Off on Neo-Nazis, Protected by Police, flaunt Swasticals near Reval Lietuva Hotel During Baltic Pride Parade

Prosecutors Work Overtime to Nix Baltic Pride Parade in Vilnius


The same state prosecution service that works to send Holocaust Survivors to eternity as suspected war criminals (neither charging nor clearing the innocent persons defamed); and, that is pleased to provide protection and the facade of dignity for neo-Nazi marches (see below at 11 March 2008 and 11 March 2010) spared no effort to ban the 8 May 2010 Baltic Pride parade.

In a typically unbelievable statement worthy of central casting, the head of the Prosecutor General’s office told BNS: ‘I appealed to the court after receipt of information about possible disturbances. The information is confidential, and I would like to refrain from further comment, however, the data we have in our possession suggests there is a possibility of certain disturbances, which we would not want’. 

 Another classic: ‘Participants of the rally could be targets of violence, we can’t have a police officer for each of them. The event would be protected in its specific location, however, nobody can forecast a crowd’s actions’, he added. Asked whether he had information about a planned riot, Petrauskas said he could not ‘state this specifically’ according to the BNS report. BNS report here.

[8 May 2010 update: While in the end forced by courts to allow the Pride parade (which the capital’s police easily managed), police provided protection and status to the neo-Nazi marchers who for hours flaunted fascist flags near the Reval Lietuva Hotel, flanked by flags of the European Union, Lithuania and various other member states.  Eyewitness report and photos here.]

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Norway’s ambassador speaks out


HE Steinar Gil publicly criticized the government’s and the elites’ silence and spirit of benign acquiescence following the neo-Nazi march. Speaking at a March 19th forum on ‘European and Lithuanian Values’ Ambassador Gil remarked: ‘Every foreigner in Lithuania noticed this march, where the participants were shouting “Lithuania for Lithuanians”. We were shocked.’

Ambassador Gil also pointed out that 50 parliamentarians had signed a petition to ban the Baltic Pride parade and asked how many Lithuanian parliamentarians and officials have spoken up against the Nationalist march? He added that every person with respect for herself or himself and for her or his country should condemn this kind of manifestation.

Reports on Lithuania Tribune and  Delfi.lt (English translation here)Dr Efraim Zuroff’s 22 March statement of support for the ambassador.

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Human Rights Advocate Andrius Navickas is ‘put inside the Jew and the Gay’ on Page 1 of Vakaro Zinios (Evening News)


After human rights advocate and journalist Andrius Navickas lodged a protest against the publication of the antisemitic and homophobic cartoon, a caricature of his face and body was inserted into the ‘Jews and Gays control the world’ cartoon and published on the front page of Vakaro zinios. It appeared along with the article ‘What is the Gay Manifesto?’  English translation.

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‘Who Controls the World?’ Cartoon again on Page 1 of Respublika


Image from the front page of Respublika, depicting the Jew and the Gay holding up the globe, under the headline ‘Kas valdo pasauli?’ (‘Who controls the world?’), followed on p. 3 by a racist, antisemitic and homophobic article by the editor. The cartoon first appeared on page 1 of the paper in 2004.

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