War crimes against Estonian civilians

Discussions on the Holocaust and 20th Century War Crimes. Note that Holocaust denial is not allowed. Hosted by David Thompson.
Ostuf Charlemagne
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Post by Ostuf Charlemagne » 20 Sep 2003 02:19

I would like to earch the point of view of some estonians readers....
Besides my dear Tapani,if it was no jewish village it means lots of people would have been token out on the streets,and token to the woods...means lots of logistics complications,transport,all that.....
Also,everytime i had documented allied war crimes,my good holocaustists friends had always asked me for names and documented facts ,saying they can take for granted general numbers....so do you have names and stories about estonian jews who were not supporting the reds,and were killed just as innocent jews ??? i don't think you can shows up with that much.....besides again; if it was no jewish villages ,how did the reds partisans survive (food and support) since nearly no estonians were helping them ?

Thompson : Are you stick in google ?????? :P :wink:

Waiting for you ! Regards.

David Thompson
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Post by David Thompson » 20 Sep 2003 02:27

Ostuf Charlemagne -- You said:
"Are you stick in google ?????? Waiting for you !"
No, I'm still out here. I remember seeing a photo very much like the one you said was forged by British intelligence and I'm trying to find it in my WWII library -- That's how I ran across those foreign Waffen-SS volunteer pictures I posted for you in the Axis countries section of the forum. You'll also see a photo of Heydrich with a fencing foil in the ABR section in a few minutes as well. I guess that's the problem with thumbing through photo books -- they're a world of their own.

Ostuf Charlemagne
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Post by Ostuf Charlemagne » 20 Sep 2003 03:40

Yes they are !! By the way ,thanks for the pics....

michael mills
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Post by michael mills » 20 Sep 2003 04:53

Tapani K wrote:
If the discussion is still about Estonia I would like to point out that there was no red partisan movement in Estonia due to total lack of local support. Also, there were no Jewish villages; the majority of Jewish Estonians were city-dwellers. It may also be assumed that the majority of those Jews who had supported the Soviet regime would have fled Estonia with the retreating Soviet Army and therefore the remaining Jews would have been mostly innocent of supporting the Reds.

In the light of the above, I find it very hard to find any crime that would have justified the killing of Estonian Jews ( or any people, without a fair trial).

The number of Jews living in Estonia was very small, only about 5,000, compared with the 90,000 in Latvia and the 150,000 in Lithunania. They had settled in Estonia toward the end of the 19th century, and were mainly town-dwelling traders who had come from Russia.

Estonia, like Livonia, had not been part of Poland, and hence did not have an established Jewish population, unlike Courland and Lithuania, which were part of Poland until the partitions at the end of the 18th century. It was annexed from Sweden by Russia in the 1720s, and as was the case with Russia itself Jews were not allowed to settle there.

After the annexation of Polish territory by Russia during the partitions, Estonia lay outside the Pale of Permitted Jewish Settlement, ie the formerly Polish areas where Jews were permitted to reside by decree of the Empress Elizabeth II. Jews could only settle in Estonia by special permission, under the same conditions as they were (rarely) allowed to settle in Moscow and St Petersburg. That is why the number of Jews in Estonia was so small by the time the country gained its independence.

Of the 5,000 or so Jews living in Estonia in 1941, all except approximately 1,000 fled into the interior of the Soviet Union with the retreating Red Army and members of the Soviet bureaucracy. Any Jews who had collaborated with the Soviet occupiers (and there were quite a few) were among those who fled. The Jews who remained behind, and were soon killed by the German occupiers (with the collaboration of some Estonians) were those who were unable to flee, and were definitely not those guilty of collaboration.

Tapani is therefore correct is his assertion that the Jews of Estonia who perished at German hands were innocent of supporting the Reds. It was a case of the innocent suffering for the crimes of the few guilty.

In any case, the motivation for the killing of the Jews who could not flee from Estonia was not so much something that happened in Estonia itself, as what had happened in the other Baltic States. As stated, Latvia and Lithuania had sizable Jewish communities, and the degree of Jewish collaboration in those countries with the Soviet occupiers had been very high, with large numbers of young Jewish leftists participating in the Communist militias that helped the NKVD forces to round up, deport, and in some cases execute, those parts of the population considered to be enemies by the occupiers. There was a strong demand for revenge among wide sections of the Latvian and Lithuanian populations, espacially among nationalist students, so arrests and massacres of Jewish leftists by anti-Soviet partisans began as soon as the Red Army fled, even before the arrival of the German forces.

The spontaneous anti-Jewish actions by Lithunanian and Latvian nationalists during the few days between the retreat of the Red Army and the arrival of the German forces made the German authorities aware of the hostility of the population toward the Jews, and encouraged them to be more radical in their own anti-Jewish measures than had been originally laid down in the orders issued to the Einsatzgruppen before the commencement of the German invasion of the Soviet Union.

As a result, the German forces quickly despatched the few Jews they found in Estonia, even though the degree of Jewish collaboration had not been so marked there.

Ostuf Charlemagne
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Post by Ostuf Charlemagne » 21 Sep 2003 04:15

Thanks for the precisions,Mills....

Michal78
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Re: War crimes against Estonian civilians

Post by Michal78 » 14 Jun 2023 18:47

Mass exection on the east...maybe someone is interesting in these photos.
M.-
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michael mills
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Re: War crimes against Estonian civilians

Post by michael mills » 15 Jun 2023 10:46

Heve the victims been identified as Estonian civilians? The executioners are obviously German Schutzpolizei or Gendarmes, but so far as know, the only mass executions of civilians perpetrated by the German forces in Estonia were of the 1,000 or so Jewish civilians who had not fled the country, and perhaps also of captured Soviet partisans, who were illegal combatants, not innocent civilians.

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