Germany

The Waffen-SS as Freedom Fighters



O P I N I O N

by Per Anders Rudling

Despised and ostracized, the Swedish community of Waffen-SS volunteers long gathered in secret on April 14, “The Day of the Fallen,” for obscure ritualistic annual gatherings at a cemetery in a Stockholm suburb.[1]

Since the 1990s, the rituals have not needed to be clandestine: the few, now very elderly survivors now head to Sinimäe, Estonia, where they feel they are now getting the honor to which they are entitled. Here, Swedish, Norwegian, Austrian, German and other Waffen-SS veterans from Western Europe meet up with their Estonian comrades.[2] The annual gatherings include those who volunteered for ideological reasons, and who are today actively passing on the experiences to a new generation of neo-Nazis.

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Posted in Antisemitism & Bias, Canada, Celebrations of Fascism, Collaborators Glorified, Estonia, Germany, History, Latvia, News & Views, Opinion, Per Anders Rudling, Politics of Memory, Riga's Waffen SS Marches, Sweden | Tagged | Comments Off on The Waffen-SS as Freedom Fighters

Gert Weisskirchen: On Blackwashing History


 


O P I N I O N

by Gert Weisskirchen

In several places in Europe, particularly in the new-accession states, there are discernible efforts to ‘blackwash’ history.

Far-right forces are hard at work to obfuscate the Holocaust, in part by defaming the victims and in part by glorifying the local perpetrators and collaborators.

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Posted in Collaborators Glorified, Germany, Gert Weisskirchen, History, Lithuania, Opinion, Politics of Memory | Comments Off on Gert Weisskirchen: On Blackwashing History

German Parliamentarian wins award in Jerusalem, blasts the ‘Prague Declaration’


German Social Democratic parliamentarian Gert Weisskirchen was awarded a certificate of honor at the Israeli Knesset on 16 December for a lifetime of fighting antisemitism, racism, and Holocaust distortion. The Knesset session was integrated into the Global Forum for Combating Antisemitism.

During an informal celebration at Jerusalem’s Crowne Plaza Hotel, Mr Weisskirchen penned, in his famed telegraphic style, on Global Forum letterpaper, his opposition to the ‘Prague Declaration’ in the spirit of three new ‘DEs’: ‘De-valuation of the victims, De-stortion of history, De-legimitization of the Holocaust. These are the reasons why I oppose the Prague Declaration’ — Gert Weisskirchen

Images courtesy of Dr Clemens Heni of WPK.

Posted in EU, Germany, Gert Weisskirchen, Human Rights, Israel, News & Views, Politics of Memory | Comments Off on German Parliamentarian wins award in Jerusalem, blasts the ‘Prague Declaration’

Gert Weisskirchen Puts on Paper, Informally, View of the 2008 Prague Declaration


At an informal meeting of participants in the Global Forum on Combating Antisemitism in Jerusalem this evening, veteran German Social Democratic parliamentarian and human rights champion Professor Gert Weisskirchen put on paper his informal views of the 2008 Prague Declaration:

Posted in Double Genocide, EU, Germany, Gert Weisskirchen, News & Views, Politics of Memory | Comments Off on Gert Weisskirchen Puts on Paper, Informally, View of the 2008 Prague Declaration

Key Diplomats in Vilnius ‘walk in the rain’ with VYI Librarian Fania Yocheles Brantsovsky


At the initiative of Norway’s ambassador to Lithuania HE Steinar Gil, a group of ambassadors and chiefs of mission defied persistent rain to go on a historical walking tour of the Vilna Ghetto, where Fania Yocheles Brantsovsky, 87, librarian of the Vilnius Yiddish Institute, recounted the history of the city’s anti-Nazi resistance. They represented the embassies of Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Norway, Poland, Portugal and Russia. Britain, Canada and the United States had participated on a previous date.

The walk was preceded by a meeting at the Jewish Community of Lithuania addressed by Norwegian ambassador HE Steinar Gil, JCL chairman Dr Shimon Alperovich, executive director Mr Simon Gurevich, and Professor Dovid Katz of the Vilnius Yiddish Institute. The event is perceived as a meaningful response to the campaign of defamation targeting Jewish veterans of the anti-Nazi resistance (see below at 28 October 2009). Report at: Responses (→ 26 Nov 2009).




Posted in Bold Citizens Speak Out, France, Germany, Japan, News & Views, Norway, Vilnius Yiddish Institute | Leave a comment

Lithuania’s Main News Portal Calls Jewish Partisan Hero Fania Brantsovsky a Suspect in a Mass Murder after she is Honored by the President of Germany


Minutes after the German Embassy in Vilnius issued a press release announcing that it had awarded Germany’s Federal Cross of Merit to Holocaust survivor Fania Yocheles Brantsovsky (born 1922), Lithuania’s main news portal, Delfi.lt, published a bileful attack replete with libelous and ridiculous accusations about her ‘war crimes’ (in effect trying to blame the Holocaust’s victims, a frequent ploy of the Baltic region’s Double Genocide Industry that is pushing the Prague Declaration in the European Parliament). The campaign against Holocaust survivors was launched by the antisemitic press and picked up by state prosecutors, starting in 2006 (see Blaming the Victims and the 28 Oct 2009 entry on the home page). English translation. The Lithuanian original appeared with this caricature of anti-Nazi resistance veteran Brantsovsky, librarian of the Vilnius Yiddish Institute, whose entire family perished in the Holocaust. It is not known why the Yiddish institute’s website contains no mention of the award, or of the unseemly attack against its own beloved librarian, who has been with the VYI since its inception in 2001. Speculation has centered on pressure ‘from above’ and fear of falling into disfavor with powers that be. On a related note, there is growing international interest in preservation of the underground partisan fort where Fania lived from September 1943 until the region’s liberation in July 1944. Authorities in the country seem to wish the fort to disappear. Fania is the country’s last Holocaust survivor who actually lived there. She continues to accompany visitors and students there. The international effort to save this remarkable Holocaust site is spearheaded by Samuel Gruber’s Jewish Art & Monuments site.

Posted in A 21st Century Campaign Against Lithuanian Holocaust Survivors?, Antisemitism & Bias, Germany, Human Rights, Media Watch, News & Views, Politics of Memory, Vilnius Yiddish Institute | Leave a comment

German President awards Fania Brantsovsky the Federal Cross of Merit


…Antisemitic Tirade Follows in Vilnius

Antisemitic reaction on Lithuania’s main news portal came within minutes of the German embassy’s press release announcing its award to anti-Nazi Jewish partisan veteran Fania Yocheles Brantsovsky, librarian of the Vilnius Yiddish Institute. The award is the president’s Federal Cross of Merit. It was presented to her by Germany’s ambassador to Lithuania Hans-Peter Annen in a ceremony at his embassy in Vilnius. Details at Responses (→ 28 Oct 2009).  [May 2010: Disturbingly, neither Fania’s award nor the antisemitic barrage against her has been mentioned to this day on the VYI website.]

English translation of the report on the Baltic internet portal Delfi, including the remarks of a ruling-party member of  parliament. It appeared with this caricature of the 87 year old Holocaust survivor who had just been honored by Germany’s president. Posted comments that threatened her with violence have now been removed. More details at Blaming the Victims (→ 28 Oct 2009). Daiva Repečkaitė and Milan Chersonski reply.

Posted in A 21st Century Campaign Against Lithuanian Holocaust Survivors?, Antisemitism & Bias, Bold Citizens Speak Out, Events, Germany, News & Views, Politics of Memory, Vilnius Yiddish Institute | Leave a comment