Report in the Forward by Michael Casper on the annual public portrayal of Jews and Roma during the Uzgavenes carnival in central Vilnius. (Image courtesy of Michael Casper.) The report notes the attitudes of the state sponsored Center for Ethnic Activity and the Vilnius City Municipality.
Antisemitism & Bias
Bold Reporter, Lukas Pileckas, Releases Video of Neo-Nazi Downtown March on Lithuania’s Independence Day
Video clip of the neo-Nazi march on the capital’s central boulevard. The march featured chants of ‘Juden raus’ and a song including ‘Take a stick and kill that little Jew’. Marchers boasted the ‘Lithuanian swastika’ (with added lines). There were also anti-Russian and anti-Polish chants. Second clip comprising the somber, dignified response of the chairman of the Jewish Community of Lithuania plus more material from the march, including the apparent amusement of onlooking police.
These videos appear thanks to the bold Lietuvos rytas journalist Lukas Pileckas. Photo by Vidmantas Balkunas. Leading politicians failed to condemn the march for over a week, when foreign pressures forced statements.
[Update of 20 March 2008: The Jerusalem Post today published a report on the protest lodged by Dr. Efraim Zuroff, director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Israel office, with the Lithuanian ambassador in Israel. PDF here.]
‘Jews are not only Clever People’ by Algirdas Berkevicius in Lietuvos aidas (front page story, continued on p. 3). English translation.
Former Member of the Lithuanian Parliament, PhD Qualified, claims Zionists Organized the Holocaust; says Putin is Jewish
Police Come to Rachel Kostanian’s Residence, Looking for Vilna Ghetto Survivors Rachel Margolis and Fania Yocheles Brantsovsky
An article in the prestigious mainstream daily Lieutvos rytas is headlined ‘The Jews Can’t Digest [or: ‘mouth’] all of their Property’. PDF.
Genocide Museum in the Center of Vilnius Features Antisemitic Exhibits; Plus: Temporary Exhibit Trivializes Auschwitz
Exhibition panel at the state sponsored Genocide Museum, exemplifying the nexus of Holocaust trivialization and antisemitism: ‘In Auschwitz we were given some spinach and a little bread’. Zoom-in of the text (2008 exhibit).
The permanent exhibit includes a post-Holocaust caricature of a Soviet jeep being driven by Lenin, Stalin and ‘the Jew Yankel’ (with no comment on the antisemitic portrayal). Sample of another antisemitic exhibit; & another. Such is sometimes the local face of the ‘Soviet-Nazi equivalence’ that is disseminated at the European Parliament via the Prague Declaration and other resolutions.
‘The rabbis are causing havoc in Lithuania’ by Professor Jonas Ciulevicius in Ukininko patarejas. English translation.
‘Are God’s chosen people always right?’ by Juozas Ivanauskas in Laisvas laikrastis. English translation. And, in the same issue: ‘Globalism’ by former parliament member V. Petkevicius. English translation.
Images (on delfi.lt) of the neo-Nazi paint attack on the central Vilnius building of the Jewish Community of Lithuania on the night of 9-10 August 2008; additional image (photos by Milan Chersonski, editor of Jerusalem of Lithuania). There have been no arrests.
‘All goats climb on a bent willow tree’ by member of parliament Julius Veselka in Laisvas laikrastis. English translation.
Jewish Community and Union of Ghetto Survivors Speak Out Again on Harassment of Holocaust Survivors who Joined the Resistance
O P I N I O N
by Shimon Alperovich and Tuvia Jafet
VILNIUS, 1 SEPTEMBER 2008
AN OPEN LETTER TO HIS EXCELLENCY VALDAS ADAMKUS, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
ČESLOVAS JURŠĖNAS, SPEAKER OF THE SEIMAS OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
GEDIMINAS KIRKILAS, PRIME MINISTER OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
ALGIMANTAS VALANTINAS, PROSECUTOR GENERAL OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
The Lithuanian Jewish Community did not fail to notice the quite rapid reaction of the country’s President and Prime Minister, who urged law enforcement authorities and special services to find as quickly as possible the criminals (and their masterminds) who organized the attack on the LJC building in Vilnius on August 9-10.
State Prosecutors Defame Anti-Nazi Resistance Hero Yitzhak Arad while Closing Part of ‘Investigation’; Anonymous ‘Expert Historian’ Attacks Arad’s Book as Public is Asked to Provide ‘Evidence’
While closing ‘part’ of its ‘investigation’ against Holocaust survivor and eminent historian Dr Yitzhak Arad, the Prosecution Service of the Republic of Lithuania issues a public call ‘to the society [public] for assistance’ searching for ‘people who can give evidence or have important information’. More incredibly, the prosecutors’ press release attacks Dr Arad’s famous memoir The Partisan, a classic of Holocaust resistance memoir literature, on the basis of an anonymous ‘Doctor of Humanitarian Sciences (expert-historian)‘. And so, the prosecution service that never achieved the slightest punishment of a single Nazi war criminal in connection with the genocide of 200,000 Lithuanian Jews, leaves for posterity its call to the public for ‘evidence’ against the anti-Nazi resistance hero Yitzhak Arad along with a gutless attack on the scholar’s book based on an anonymous trasher. Perhaps the prosecutors’ mysterious ‘Doctor of Humanitarian Sciences (Expert-Historian)’ will muster the courage to come forward and identify himself for history?
O P I N I O N
by Leonidas Donskis
This English version of the essay (the original Lithuanian text appeared in Lietuvos aidas, 28 November 2008) first appeared in the English edition of Jerusalem of Lithuania (Oct-Dec 2008, PDF here) and is republished here with the author’s and editor’s permission.
I have already written that we live in a period of not only monetary inflation, but of concept and value inflation as well. In our time oaths have become worthless, while formerly a person who broke one lost not only all of his own power, but the capacity to represent his values and to participate in the public sphere as well. Nothing, other than his own person and his private life, remained. He no longer had the right to speak on behalf of either his group, his nation, or his society.
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.
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.
Vilna Ghetto Victims Substituted for War Criminals List in the Baltic Times; VYI Chief calls the Association of Lithuanian Jews ‘Extreme Right-Wingers’
Part of a list of Jewish victims of the Vilna Ghetto (including fallen resistance hero Yechiel Sheinboim) appears in the Baltic Times instead of the captioned list of alleged Nazi-allied murderers (zoom-in).
The young foreign reporter was wholly innocent; a still unidentified source provided the wrong list. An obscure and ambiguous correction appeared the following week.
Moreover, director of the Vilnius Yiddish Institute Sarunas Liekis is quoted (misquoted?) in the article (column 2), as calling the last active group of Litvak Holocaust survivors in the world (the ALJ in Tel Aviv) ‘extreme right-wingers’, adding that ‘scholars don’t talk to them’. Although now aged, these survivors’ ranks still include prominent Holocaust scholars.
The Baltic trend to delegitimize Holocaust survivors and their supporters is part of the wider series of attempted conceptual realignments deemed ‘necessary’ to propagate the Double Genocide bandwagon, and obfuscation of the Holocaust, within the context of regional unltranationalism.
A student was asked at the oral defense of his/her thesis: ‘Did the Jews pay you to do this topic?’ There was no comment from any committee member, and no written protest from the student’s supervisor or sponsoring department. Note: The student’s topic had no connection to Holocaust issues.
Headline and image from page 2 of Vakaro zinios: a photo of the Culture Ministry building, with the caption and article suggesting that ‘the Jews’ are working to take it away from the government. The article is headed ‘Lithuanian law being corrected by the Jews’ with the word ‘Jews’ in rather large type.
Image from the front page of the daily Vakaro zinios: a photomontage of the elected 80 year old chairman of the Jewish Community of Lithuania and a Soviet-era abacus.
The headline and accompanying article on p. 4 suggest that ‘the Jews’ are plotting to expropriate money from the country.