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#41 Ken Estes

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 0446 AM

Ken, if government claiming that not supports, its not mean that it really dont support this. ;)  Did you heared about "Legioners Day"? This was official celebration day of SS in Latvia. It was canceled only under pressure of EU. So Latvian government WANT to support, but cant do it. They estonian neighbours at least imitating some struggle against "right political extremism"... But they too are saints...  B)

P.S. Worst problem of baltic regimes, is that they are still thinking and making decisions in terms  and rules of year 1935...

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Yes, Jartsev, but what made it 'official?' Did it actually appear in the govt bulletin, or was it voted in by the assembly? Details, please, if you have them! Ken
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#42 Jartsev

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 0531 AM

Yes, Jartsev, but what made it 'official?'  Did it actually appear in the govt bulletin, or was it voted in by the assembly? Details, please, if you have them!  Ken

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So-called "Day of Latvian Legion" was declared as official celebration day in 1999... Next year it was cancelled because of strong negative reaction of ministery of foreign affairs of Russian Federation, german ambassador in Latvia, german state chancellor Helmut Kohl and president of France Jacques Chirac...

but celebrations are continuing... they are usually translated by latvian state TV company in "live" mode. Members of government and parlamet are also usually detected taking part in this activities.

In Estonia former SS-troopers taked part in military parade in the ranks of modern estonian armed forces, conducted in Tallinn in case of Independence Day, untill 2003...


P.S. if someone dont believe this- its his right. I´m always responding for my words.

Edited by Jartsev, 19 March 2005 - 0535 AM.

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#43 BansheeOne

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 0625 AM

Helmut Kohl was voted out in 1998. Did you mean ex-chancellor, or were you referring to current chancellor Schröder?
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#44 Jartsev

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 0645 AM

Helmut Kohl was voted out in 1998. Did you mean ex-chancellor, or were you referring to current chancellor Schröder?

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Thanks for correction- my mistake. Thats was Kohl... But in any case- "ex-" or not- very significant person in Europe
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#45 Ken Estes

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 0801 AM

So-called "Day of Latvian Legion" was declared as official celebration day in 1999... Next year it was cancelled because of strong negative reaction  of ministery of foreign affairs of Russian Federation, german ambassador in Latvia, german state  chancellor Helmut Kohl and president of France  Jacques Chirac...

but celebrations are continuing... they are usually translated by latvian state TV company in "live" mode. Members of government and parlamet are also usually detected taking part in this activities.

In Estonia former SS-troopers taked part in military parade in the ranks of modern  estonian armed forces, conducted in Tallinn in case of Independence Day, untill 2003...
P.S. if someone dont believe this- its his right. I´m always responding for my words.

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This is highly interesting, as you are pointing out the sole European government to make such an official recognition day, and now you point out their efforts to allow SS vets to participate in an armed forces parade. Please point us to the records, newspaper accounts, etc. Latvian language will not be a problem.

To say "Day of Latvian Legion was declared" is a little passive. Who declared it and when would be of interest. Cheers, Ken
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#46 Ken Estes

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 0823 AM

The gist of the below links seems to me that vets have applied for and received parade permits from municipalities, and government officials have and have not participated. The parliament tried to generalize Mar16 as a day for all soldiers resisting the Rus, but the ploy failed?

One wonders. It certainly has achieved a certain notoriety, but for some maybe it is shock at learning that W-SS vets receive pensions in some countries, as in Germany.

It has the look of ex-officio at this point. [Edit: maybe this one is better than the others, but it is still somewhat confusing (e.g. political but not govt support):
http://www.hagalil.c...9/03/latvia.htm ]
-----------------
http://www.ce-review...amber25old.html
[In 1999]
The lead-up to the 16 March parade is more difficult to contemplate. In an attempt to defuse some controversy, the government and Saeima (parliament) initiated several changes to existing rules. First of all, the government asked for officials and military leaders to stay away from the Latvian Legion parade, which has been accepted. The parliament proclaimed 16 March as a commemorations day for all Latvian soldiers from all sides.

However, the pre-emptive event did not serve its purpose. Counter-demonstrations requests came in from many groups. Jewish organisations denounced the event and called for its cancellation. Moscow stepped up its rhetoric against Latvia. In the end, even President Guntis Ulmanis stated that making 16 March a commemorations day for all Latvian soldiers was "wrong" and it may change next year. After meeting with groups from all persuasions, President Ulmanis (already in a lame-duck position as his term ends this summer and hence he is bound by term-limits) appeared to side with those calling for the event's cancellation.


http://www.fsumonito...302Latvia.shtml

Baltic News Service
March 13, 2002

Riga, 13 March: Following suggestions made by the Latvian Security Police, the Riga City Council has cancelled its previously issued permission for two right-wing movements to hold a procession through the centre of the Latvian capital on 16 March in honor of the Latvian Nazi SS Waffen soldiers of World War II.

The processions on 16 March in memory of the soldiers serving in the Latvian Nazi legion have in previous years drawn much international attention.

The former Latvian Legionnaires, as the soldiers are known in Latvia, and the Latvian National Soldiers' Society, have already announced that they will be forfeiting the traditional march to the Freedom Monument on 16 March, so as to not threaten the Baltic state's bid for NATO membership.

Nevertheless, both Klubs 415 and Latvietis - small patriotic organizations mainly consisting of Latvian youths - are dead set on marching on 16 March, and were initially allowed to by the city council.

The Latvian Security Police believes that such a procession could cause negative public and even international resonance, harming Latvia's national interests. The police said that they already have their eye on these two organizations, as they suspect them of provocative actions.

The mayor of Riga, Gundars Bojars, also said he does not support the processions, although for the sake of order the municipality may be taking a slight legal risk for taking back permission previously issued.

Both right-wing organizations told BNS that they will not be marching the streets on 16 March, but will individually be placing flowers at the foot of the Freedom Monument in central Riga.

Both movements were initially allowed to hold the processions, on the condition that they themselves will be responsible for public order during their procession.

Meanwhile, the Victory movement, covering for the illegal extremist Russian National Bolsheviks, were forbidden to hold a procession on the same day under the slogan "Against the renewal of fascism."

The Latvian National Soldiers' Association, organizing the traditional procession on 16 March every year to commemorate Latvian soldiers that were forced to serve in the Nazi army in World War II, previously said there will not be any procession in Riga this year.

There is not going to be any procession this 16 March but the Latvian Legionnaires will keep up with other traditions, attending a commemorative service in the Doma church in Riga, laying flowers in the Fraternal Cemetery in the Latvian capital and also visiting a Legionnaire burial site in Lestene, in the county of Tukums, north-west from Riga.

The Latvian Legion was established in February 1943, but 16 March was picked as the commemoration date because on this date in 1944 the 15th and 19th divisions of the legion locked in heroic battle with the Soviet Army at the Velikaya river in Opochka region in Russia.

A total of 140,000 people were called up to form the Latvian Legion and about 50,000 of them died in the war or deportations following the restoration of Soviet rule in Latvia. In 1950 Washington published a declaration about Baltic SS legions having being special units to be distinguished from other German SS troops and not regarded as movements harmful to the United States government.

Until 1988 Latvia marked 16 March as the commemoration day for Latvian Legionnaires unofficially. In summer 1988, 16 March was made an official date for commemoration of Latvian soldiers but last year the Latvian parliament resolved to change the official commemoration date to 11 November or Lacplesis' Day, named after Latvian folk tale hero Lacplesis, who fought against foreign invaders.

http://www.humanrigh...itor/28276.html

Liepaja City Council has authorised organisation of the procession on the Commemoration day for the Latvian Legion on 16 March despite warnings about possible violence during the event expressed by the representatives of left-wing political parties. Latvian National Democratic party and For Human Rights in the United Latvia in collaboration with the Russian Community of Liepaja and other organisations are planning to ask Liepaja City Council to recall the authorisation of the procession, otherwise they will organise protest actions on 16 March.

Edited by Ken Estes, 19 March 2005 - 0829 AM.

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#47 Jartsev

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 0927 AM

This is highly interesting, as you are pointing out the sole European government to make such an official recognition day, and now you point out their efforts to allow SS vets to participate in an armed forces parade.  Please point us to the records, newspaper accounts, etc. Latvian language will not be a problem.

To say "Day of Latvian Legion was declared" is a little passive. Who declared it and when would be of interest.  Cheers,  Ken

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I´m living in Estonia and cant read or speak latvian language...


News highlights march ´99 -Batics Worldwide

This is press-release by ADL:
ADL protest march of waffen SS

Radio Free Europe: Estonian War Veterans Provoke Russian Reaction
Read...

Article about Latvia from New Statesman, placed on BRITISH HELSINKI HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP website:
Where de Sade and SS lives on

Guardian, 2 may 2002:
latvian ethnic policy


Here article about 16.03.2003 by news portal www.delfi.lv
latvian text
Russian text
Intersting, that some significant details are missing in latvian version(if yhey are true).

Report by RTR journalist Ekaterina Zotina:
Таллин приветствует СС If needed i can provide her phone number :lol:

I think,this is enought for understanding, that there are some problems in the Baltics... In russian language i found one very capacious word to describe this- "блядство".


P.S.
The decisions, issued by latvian president:
http://www.likumi.lv/doc.php?id=49093
http://www.likumi.lv/doc.php?id=2389

Re-burial of SS-Standartenführer Alfons Vilhelm Robert Rebane in Estonia:
screenshots from TV-report.

Posted Image
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Participation of military, presented by servicemen of "Guard Battalion"/ "Vahepataljon" is evident.

Official list of units, taked part in military parade in Tallinn, 24.02.2000:
Read list, on estonian language SS and wermacht veterans are bashfully listed as "war veterans"... :lol:

Edited by Jartsev, 19 March 2005 - 1101 AM.

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#48 LeoTanker

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 1154 AM

It's always struck me as slightly funny (in a very macabre way), that Hitlers last defenders were mainly foreigners, French, Belgians, Swedes etc.

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Not so odd, really. Thoose traitors just had to fight on to the bitter end since they knew what would happend to them if they got capptured by the russians, or if they would be sent home to their own countries.

To hell with the Baltic SS!
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#49 Mikel2

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 1704 PM

To me, it is a somewhat similar situation with the Spanish Blue Division. They fought with distinction in Russia and I'm not aware of any atrocities towards Russian civilians committed by them. In fact they were reprimanded by the Germans because of their confraternization with the Russian populace, even with some marriages to Russian girls :) .
They certainly can't be put in the same group as the Latvian SS. However, they fought alongside one of the most monstrous regimes in history, although they were there to fight the Soviet Union, an equally evil regime.
I would love to hear what Russian sources have to say about the Blue Division.
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#50 Gregory

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 1748 PM

To me, it is a somewhat similar situation with the Spanish Blue Division. They fought with distinction in Russia and I'm not aware of any atrocities towards Russian civilians committed by them. In fact they were reprimanded by the Germans because of their confraternization with the Russian populace, even with some marriages to Russian girls  :) .
  They certainly can't be put in the same group as the Latvian SS. However, they fought alongside one of the most monstrous regimes in history, although they were there to fight the Soviet Union, an equally evil regime.
  I would love to hear what Russian sources have to say about the Blue Division.

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Here is an excerpt from memoirs of a woman who lived under occupation, and encountered both Spaniards and Germans.

1. Germans are silent and quiet. Spaniards are loud and restless as young puppies. 2. Germans implicitly submit to any order. Spaniards always strive to not execute the order, whatever it was. Germans are forbidden to offend Spaniards, as visitors. So they are externally nice to them, though really they passionately hate. Spaniards beat up Germans every Saturday at night after they get drunk on weekly wine ration. Germans just defend themselves.
3. Germans are extremely economical with regimentals and products. Any crumb of products at them does not go to waste. Spaniards, having received absolutely new silk linen, take scissors and transform underpants into shorts. The rest they throw out to delight of my laundresses... Spaniards go for 35 kilometers from Pavlovsk for produce every week. And everybody knows, what they have received this week. If it is lemons the exhaust pipe at the lorry is stopped up by a lemon and lemons stick out on all possible and impossible places. If apples - the same occurs and to apples and all other...
4... Germans are brave so far as as it is ordered to them to by Fuhrer. Spaniards have no instinct of self-preservation. If they suffer losses of 50%, the other 50% advances with song. We observed it with our own eyes...
5. Germans despite the sentimentality are very rough with women. They like similarity of home life with the girlfriends, but in essence - egoists and boors. And in "campaign" they force girls to clean behind themselves lavatories and with pleasure and mockery make a mess of the whole thing. Germans can hit woman. Spaniards - passion and respect for the woman. They can kill their girlfriend very easily from jealousy, but never will strike.

Germans and Spaniards are united in one thing only - in violent hatred of each other.


She also mentions that Spaniards often gave presents to children.
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#51 Jartsev

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 1750 PM

To me, it is a somewhat similar situation with the Spanish Blue Division. They fought with distinction in Russia and I'm not aware of any atrocities towards Russian civilians committed by them. In fact they were reprimanded by the Germans because of their confraternization with the Russian populace, even with some marriages to Russian girls  :) .
  They certainly can't be put in the same group as the Latvian SS. However, they fought alongside one of the most monstrous regimes in history, although they were there to fight the Soviet Union, an equally evil regime.
  I would love to hear what Russian sources have to say about the Blue Division.

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1) There is a huge difference between your Blue Division and Waffen der SS... SS and related organizations were declared criminal in Nurnberg.
2) Diplomatic relations between Russia and Spain are normal now, unlike relations with baltic states(especially Latvia).

So there no comments about Blue Division other than neutral in russian sources. ;)
For the sample:
http://rian.ru/socie...116/734650.html (on russian, english version not available)
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#52 Mikel2

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 1841 PM

My point is that the Blue Division's history is one to be very proud of, except for the very minor detail that they were fighting alongside the nazis, which I find very hard to forget.
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#53 Mikel2

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 1845 PM

Thanks Gregory and Jartsev for the articles.

"Minister of Defense RF Ivanov thanks Spain for the return of cross from the main cupola of the cathedral of holy Sofia in great Novgorod"

Maybe the Russians can now return our gold reserves to us :lol:
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#54 Old Tanker

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 2039 PM

It easy to look at things from a 2005 perspective.

But to many people in that era it was better Dead than Red.


If you only have two choices Commie or NAZI , it's not surprising that many look at it not such much as to what system of politics was involved but did they prefrer living under a Russian Empire or a German Empire.

The Latvians felt more threatened by the Russians than they did the Germans.
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#55 Gregory

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Posted 19 March 2005 - 2140 PM

It easy to look at things from a 2005 perspective.

It's not just "easy", it's the only morally correct position. To do otherwise it to be willfully blind.

But to many people in that era it was better Dead than Red.

For all the complaints by Baltic nation, Russian occupaiton was by far more lenient. In 1940-1941, approximately 15,000 Latvians were deported to Russia. Of those, approximately 5000 died from all causes (about 300 were executed, the rest died in camps or prisons). In 1941 alone, 35000 Latvian Jews were executed by the Nazis. Another 10-15,000 Latvians of all nationalities who were accused of sympathies to the USSR were also elminiated. They were not given a choice, wether they wanted to be "red", "dead" or otherwise.

If you only have two choices Commie or NAZI  , it's not surprising  that many look at it not such much as to what system of politics was involved but did they prefrer living under  a Russian Empire or a German Empire.

The Latvians felt more threatened by the Russians than they did the Germans.

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I can understand that since the genocide did not fall upon the ethnic Latvians, they were comparatively untroubled by it. However, I find nothing worthy of celebration in that stance.
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#56 Jartsev

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Posted 20 March 2005 - 0347 AM

Actual numbers of arrests and deportations in Baltics, 1940-1941, on russian languge:

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Докладная записка НКГБ СССР №2288/М в ЦК ВКП(б), СНК СССР и НКВД СССР об итогах операции по изъятию антисоветского, уголовного и социально опасного элемента в Литве, Латвии и Эстонии

17 июня 1941 г.

Подведены окончательные итоги операции по аресту и выселению антисоветского, уголовного и социально опасного элемента из Литовской, Латвийской и Эстонской ССР.

По Литве: арестовано 5664 человека, выселено 10187 человек, всего репрессирован 15851 человек. /Lithuania- arrested-5664, deported 10187, total-15851/

По Латвии: арестовано 5625 человек, выселено 9546 человек, всего репрессирован 15171 человек. /Latvia -arrested 5625, deported 9546, total-15171/

По Эстонии: арестовано 3178 человек, выселено 5978 человек, всего репрессировано 9156 человек. /arrested -3178, deported -5978 , total -9156/

Всего по всем трем республикам: арестовано 14467 человек, выселено 25711 человек, всего репрессировано 40178 человек.
/Total- arrested-14467, deported 25711, total-40178/

В том числе по трем республикам:
/Including( 3 republics total)/

а) активных членов контрреволюционных националистических организаций арестовано - 5420 человек, выселено членов их семей - 11038 человек;
/active members of nationalistic organizations- arrested 5420, members of they families deported-11038/

б) бывших охранников, жандармов, полицейских, тюремщиков арестовано - 1603 человека, выселено членов их семей - 3240 человек;
/former security guards, police and prison personel- arrested 1603, members of they families deported -3240

в) бывших крупных помещиков, фабрикантов и чиновников бывшего госаппарата Литвы, Латвии и Эстонии арестовано - 3236 человек, выселено членов их семей - 7124 человека;
/significant landowners, manufacturer(manufacture owners), high ranking officials -arrested- 3236, members of they families-7124/

г) бывших офицеров польской, латвийской, литовской, эстонской и белой армий, не служивших в территориальных корпусах и на которых имелись компрометирующие материалы, арестовано - 643 человека, выселено членов их семей - 1649 человек;
/former officers of Polish, Latvian, Lithuanian, Estonian and "White" armies, not serving in territorial units of Red Army, and there are compromising materials on them- arrested 643, family members deported -1649/

д) членов семей участников контрреволюционных организаций, осужденных к ВМН, арестовано - 27 человек, выселено - 465 человек;
/members of families of counter-revolutional organizations activists(sentenced to death)- arrested- 27, deported- 465/

е) лиц, прибывших из Германии в порядке репатриации, а также немцев, записавшихся на репатриацию и по различным причинам не уехавших в Германию, в отношении которых имеется компрометирующий материал, арестовано - 56 человек, выселено - 105 человек;
/persons repatriated from Germany, ethnic germans registered to migrate to Germany and didnt leaved baltics by different reasons; there are compromising materials on them- arrested 27, deported-105/

ж) беженцев из бывшей Польши, отказавшихся принять советское гражданство, арестовано - 337 человек, выселено - 1330 человек:
/refugees from Poland, refused to take oviet citizenship- arrested 337, deported 1330/

з) уголовного элемента арестовано - 2162 человека;
/criminals- arrested 2162/

и) проституток, зарегистрированных в бывших полицейских органах Литвы, Латвии и Эстонии, ныне продолжающих заниматься проституцией, выселено - 760 человек;
/registered prostitutes- deported 760/

к) бывших офицеров литовской, латвийской и эстонской армий, служивших в территориальных корпусах Красной Армии, на которых имелся компрометирующий материал, арестовано - 933 человека, в том числе: по Литве - 285 человек, по Латвии - 424 человека, по Эстонии - 224 человека.<...>
/former officers of baltics armies on Red army service, there are compromising materials on them- arrested total 933/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
taken from: "Органы государственной безопасности СССР в Великой Отечественной войне". Т.1. Накануне. Книга 2. 1 января - 21 июня 1941 г. М., 1995. С.247-248
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#57 LeoTanker

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Posted 20 March 2005 - 0358 AM

@ Greg Deych: Good points. I agree with you 100%.
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#58 swerve

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Posted 20 March 2005 - 1231 PM

"More lenient" is most definitely a relative term, though. As a proportion of small populations those are still large numbers. 9000 Estonians arrested or deported is equivalent to over 2 million Americans, or >400000 British. 5000 Latvians dead from the 1940 population is proportionately about the same as total US deaths in WW2.
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#59 Jartsev

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Posted 20 March 2005 - 1322 PM

"More lenient" is most definitely a relative term, though. As a proportion of small populations those are still large numbers. 9000 Estonians arrested or deported is equivalent to over 2 million Americans, or >400000 British. 5000 Latvians dead from the 1940 population is proportionately about the same as total US deaths in WW2.

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On other bowl of weights we have ~61.000 civilians(most of them citizens of other european countries) and 64-65.000 soviet POWs DELIBERATELY exterminated in concentration camps located in Estonia. Those camps personell was mainly local. But killing has begun far before of creation of concentration camps- only during late summer- fall of 1941 estonian paramilitary organization "Omakaitse" killed about 12.000 of own co-citizens and soviet POWs in vicinity of Tartu. All jews of Estonia (2000 peoples, they not escaped to the east with retreating Red Army) were DELIBERATELY murdered during fall of 1941. Untill 1 november 1941 estonian police and paramilitary units conducted 5033 clean-up operations agains local civilian population, number of arrested persons reached 41135, 7357 of them were killed "for attemt of resistance"...

This is terrible truth that all in todays Baltics are tryng to forget...

Edited by Jartsev, 20 March 2005 - 1324 PM.

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#60 Guest_DIU_*

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 1141 AM

The Baltic countries are really specific in regard to the II WW. One half of their inhabitation fought in the Red Army and the second half for Hitler. One would think that they should keep balance or at least refrain from rummaging in these matters, but actually their state authorities and local mass media actively persecute the Red Army’s part as despised “occupants and their accomplices” and, on the other hand, exalt the local SS-men as “freedom fighters” and “avengers for violated independency”. In particular, the Estonian nationalists like to describe the joint operations of Estonian, German, Holland, Flemish, Norwegian SS detachments (it is interesting that they usually enumerate them like me here, with “Estonian” in the first place) near Narva in 1944 as a glorious demonstration of “Brotherhood in Arms”, the example of joint defense of United Europe against the eastern barbarians (absolutely in line with Dr. Hebbels) and the most heroic page in the Estonian history.

They think that they will increase their prestige and gain sympathies in the Western Europe in that way and, as a result, will be accepted as “100% Europeans” (i.e. bearing no relation to the Russian Empire of 1710-1918 and USSR of 1940-41 and 1944-91).

But the historic truth is somewhat different. They were not considered as “Aryans” in the III Reich (like Dutchmen or Norwegians) or allied states (like Finns or Hungarians). They were “untermenschen” peoples and their status was purely colonial. The Baltic countries together with Byelorussia were united into Reichskommissariat “Ostland” headed by the German officials, with the only state language (German), without the high education for native peoples (all local universities were closed), just like Reichskommissariat “Polen” (Poland).

The purpose of Hitler in the 2nd WW was “expansion of living space (Lebensraum) of the German nation” at the expense of “racially inferior” Eastern European peoples. Poland and Baltic territories were due to absorption by Germany, Byelorussia must have been “the frontier forest” separating Reich from the Eastern colonies. The after-war plans of Hitler and Himmler (the chief of SS) in respect of the nearest Eastern neighbours were as follows: 80-85% Poles, 85% Lithuanians, 50% Latvians, 40-50% Estonians were due to expulsion to the Western Siberia, the remainder “having an admixture of Aryan blood” (Latvians and Estonians were the movable property of German nobility during 600 or 700 years) was due to Germanization within 5 years in towns and 10 years in the country and exploitation by the German colonists.

And even formally the Baltic SS Divisions (just like the Ukrainian and other “Eastern” detachments) were not equal to the German ones, they were “der SS”, i.e. “attached to SS”.

In other words, the pretensions of these armed lackeys would be ridiculous if they would not be so disgusting. They were the worst kind of collaborators, just as their Russian/Ukranian/Byelorussian/Polish/Yugoslavian etc. colleagues

They like to allege that the Baltic Waffen SS bear no relation to extermination of civil people. What can be said on this subject? All SS-men had the same identification documents, without any special division for “concentration camp guards” and “front-line fighters”. The same men were transferred from the concentration camp guards to the fighting detachments (as punishment) and back (as reward). The Baltic SS Divisions actually had not enough time to participate in the “interior chastising operations” (they were established in the end of 1943 or 1944 and immediately used at the front).

But who were their staff? All native blood-stained butcher trash (i.e. checked personnel, from the nazi point of view). In 1941 Germans recruited about 85 Polizei battalions in the Baltic states (much more than 3 Divisions) and they were actively used for annihilation of Jews (in Lithuania 180.000 of 220.000 local Jews were killed by the end of 1941 and 30.000 later), “sympathizing with USSR” and the suspected partisan supporters in Russia, Byelorussia and Poland. What “vengeance on NKVD” could force them to drive Byelorussian peasants into churches and burn them alive? In 1941, 42 and even 43 they were sure of the inevitable victory of the III Reich, the Red Army seemed to be lost, and the front line was far to the East. Not “the revenge for 1940” was their driving force, but the pure servility before the new-old pitiless Masters, the wish of saving their skins and gaining at the expense of “losers”. These tens of thousands of thugs did not disappear in the mysterious way in 1944, they became the backbone of 15, 19, 20 “Divisions der SS”. Not “the fight for independency” and even not “the fight against communism” were the reasons for their “high fighting spirit”, but the animal fear of deserved punishment and the mutual denouncing. Of course, many usual people were mobilized as well, but the skeleton was quite worth gallows.

Well, this is not to say that the Soviet regime was ideal for the Baltic states. But their SS-men who openly demonstrate and advertise themselves are not “the snow-white champions of independency”, they should be attributed to another category. And their protectors as well.
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