Berlin, Germany (Weltexpress). For three years now, representatives of Russia have no longer been invited to events dedicated to the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp by the Red Army. In Luxembourg, the Russian ambassador was first invited to the annual commemoration ceremony, but then uninvited again.
On 27 January 1945, the advancing Red Army of the Soviet Union liberated the Auschwitz concentration camp, where the German Nazis murdered between 1.5 and 2 million people of different nationalities and ethnicities during the Second World War using a kind of industrial killing process.
This year, on Saturday 27 January, commemorations of this monstrous crime took place across Europe and beyond. In the heart of the European Union, in Luxembourg, an unbelievably horrific incident took place. The director of the National Museum of Resistance and Human Rights, which also commemorates the murdered Luxembourgish resistance fighters against the Nazi occupiers, a certain Mr F. Schröder, suddenly decided to withdraw the invitation of the Russian ambassador to the ceremony marking the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp. The Russian ambassador to Luxembourg, Mr D. Lobanov, then sent him an open letter reminding him whose troops liberated the concentration camp and to whom Luxembourg owed its existence as an independent state.
The local Luxembourg newspaper Tageblatt described the shameful incident as an “embarrassing mishap”. In its historical dimensions, however, this “mishap” represents a tangible scandal. The trade union-owned Tageblatt and the advertising newspaper L’essentiel reported that the ambassador of the Russian Federation had “inadvertently” received an invitation to the “International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust”. When asked about this, the National Resistance Museum, the organiser of the commemoration, explained that the ambassador had been informed that he was “no longer invited”.
“What is this about?” asked the newspaper vum Lëtzebuerger Vollek, the daily newspaper of the KP of the small state, and explained to its readers that 27 January had been declared “Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust” by the UN in 2005. The occasion was the 60th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp by the soldiers of the Soviet Red Army. The pictures of the Soviet soldiers pushing open the gate of the concentration camp and being greeted as liberators by the prisoners crammed in there, the photos of the Red Army soldiers providing medical aid and distributing food to the liberated prisoners have since travelled around the world to mark the occasion.
However, shortly after 27 January became a day of remembrance, it was also misused politically. To this day, the state of Israel lays sole claim to celebrating the day as “its” Israeli day of remembrance. Yes, a total of six million Jews fell victim to the terror of the German fascists, supported by their allies and those willing to help, but Jews were not the first victims of the fascists.
The first Nazi concentration camps were set up for political prisoners after the “normal” prisons had already been filled with communists, social democrats, trade unionists and other anti-fascists. Later, prisoners of war and Nazi opponents from all the countries invaded and occupied by the German fascists were added, including those from Luxembourg.
The liberation of Auschwitz was therefore not just a liberation for the Jewish prisoners, but for people from almost every country in Europe. The day of remembrance is therefore dedicated to them all. The Luxembourg KP daily continues: “In view of the confrontation with Russia, which has been fuelling for years, especially in view of the war in Ukraine, the Russian Federation is being banned from the public life of our countries. The Russian ambassador in Luxembourg was simply told that Ukraine would take part in the commemoration and that Ukrainians had been part of the Red Army. Has anyone ever heard of representatives of the USA being uninvited from commemorative events after their war crimes in Hiroshima, Vietnam, Iraq – the list is long?
Members of all nations and nationalities of the Soviet Union fought in the Red Army. The same Red Army was then being fought in Ukraine by Ukrainian fascists and nationalists, at gunpoint, side by side with the German Wehrmacht. The leaders of these volunteers, who were actively involved in the mass murder of Jews, are officially celebrated as “national heroes” in today’s Ukraine. And that is the real scandal: representatives of the state that honours the murderers of Jews as “national heroes” are to commemorate the murdered Jews today in Esch (city in Luxembourg).”
Où va nous amener l'oubli de l'histoire? Lettre ouverte au directeur du Musée National de la Résistance et des Droits Humains M.Frank Schroeder #MNR #Shoah #Auschwitz #Holocaust #Genocide #nazicamps #concentrationcamps #devoirdemémoire #Luxembourg #EschsurAlzette #january27 pic.twitter.com/2fJUYEKoZG— Russian Embassy, Lux (@RusEmbLux) January 25, 2024
The Ambassador of the Russian Federation in Luxembourg responded to his disinvitation with an open letter to the museum director. The letter is in French and can be accessed via this link on X (formerly Twitter) on the profile of the Russian Embassy in Luxembourg. I have translated the most important passages of the letter and they follow below:
“Dear Mr Director,”
(After the usual polite phrases in diplomatic letters, the core of the open letter follows).
“However, some questions arise. Was it “by mistake” that you sent me the invitation? Did you accidentally invite the ambassador of the country whose army liberated this extermination camp 79 years ago, in January 1945, and saved its living martyrs, to the ceremony marking the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz?
Was it ‘by mistake’ that you invited the ambassador of the country that made a decisive contribution to the victory over German National Socialism at the cost of 27 million lives? I don’t think anyone would dare deny that the map of Europe and probably the world would look different today without this collective achievement of the Soviet people. And there would certainly be neither the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, at least not as a sovereign state, nor the museum that you have the honour of directing.
like all museum professionals around the world, you must love and know history. I am convinced that you never wrote this second letter, in which you revoke the invitation to the commemoration, yourself. Only someone who doesn’t know history or wants to forget it so as not to embarrass himself with his political gimmicks could have suggested such a clumsy gesture to you. It is not for me to guess what feelings you had when you signed this second letter, but I admit that I would be ashamed if I were you.
Signed D. Lobanov
Ambassador of the Russian Federation
to the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg”
This is yet another incident that documents the stubborn desire of the European elites to not even shy away from ludicrous measures to erase from history inconvenient facts that do not fit the current political narrative. In the meantime, most people in the USA and the West already believe that the US army single-handedly smashed the Wehrmacht and redeemed the whole of Europe, West and East, from the Nazis. If this trend continues, in a few years it will be said that the victorious US army first liberated Auschwitz and then the ungrateful Russians from the Nazis. And AI-generated photo documents will already “prove” this in school textbooks.
Addendum: However, history is being rewritten faster than I feared. The great German historian and President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, made sure of that on 26 January, one day before this year’s Auschwitz Memorial Day. Her official declaration “Never again applies now” contains the sentence: “On 27 January 1945, the Allies liberated the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration and death camp.”