Voices from Russia

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Only Unity Can Defeat Terrorism

We can only defeat terrorism through the joint efforts of both the government and ordinary people. Virtually all of the responses of prominent Russian politicians, academics, religious leaders, and community activists to the terrorist attack that caused the derailment of the Nevsky Express have this as a leitmotif.

In his statement, Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias called on all Russians to fight terror for the sake of their neighbours and in memory of its victims. “This obligation lies not only upon the state, but, also, upon all the people”, he said after serving a Memorial Litiya. “Today, we raise prayers for those who died and we pray for those injured in the attack. Amongst the dead were people whom we personally knew. Some of them were fervent Churchmen and helped the Church actively in its ministry. We will remember their names, as we will pray for all those who died. Our people should not become blasé about such events”.

This unprecedented crime moved not only Russians, but, also, caused heartfelt and sincere words of sympathy on the part of foreign politicians, including the leaders of many countries. In an interview with the Voice of Russia World Service, Vasili Likhachov, the Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Federation Council, pointed this up to us. In his view, this kind of tragedy forces us to reflect upon the possible solutions to many different problems. He said, “Above all, it focuses us on the problems related to the maintenance of an effective security system. Over the past few years, Russian legislators enacted a very thorough and tough anti-terrorism legislative agenda. The RF is one of the most active partners joined in the international cooperation against terrorism. The RF enforces almost all of the 13 international conventions against terrorism adopted by the UN. However, the action that we have witnessed opens our eyes to the fact that there are forces interested in destabilising both the society and government of our country. They aim at undermining the credibility of the government, even at the expense of human lives. I am convinced that all that we did after this tragic incident were moves in the right direction. However, we now need to think about the fact that we need security that is completely effective, security that would protect every Russian and every Russian family. We should also apply this principle to the safety of public institutions. From that point of view, no doubt, we face a very serious conversation. Today, it’s very important that in expressing our condolences to the bereaved families and providing moral and material assistance to those who suffered because of this terrorist act, we feel responsibility for the fate of their relatives and, indeed, all of Russian society. We do not need to dwell on the whole problem, for there are specialised structures to solve the security problems. It is important that society in general and ordinary people condemn such actions and develop a kind of antidote. When we create such a social alliance, we shall not only solve the current problems of national and international security, but, also, be able to provide a framework for the authoritative and civilised development of the Russian state and its rightful place in the world community”.

“This is not only a crisis for Russia, but, it is a problem all over the world, which sympathises with us now”, said Olga Kryshtanovskaya, the director of the Institute of Applied Politics, on-air at Voice of Russia. “This is something that unites us with all the countries that suffer from terrorism, who know what it is, who mourn their own dead. Only by working together, only joint efforts can solve this problem. It is necessary, perhaps, to think of new security measures, discuss them, and work hard to carry them through. Terrorism can exist only as long as there are people who think they can kill innocent people with impunity. Therefore, the state should throw all its energies and resources into the effort to find those responsible and punish them. We have no other choice. We must find these criminals. Moreover, the police said they have evidence. That is, there is hope that, after all, we will find the terrorists, and, God willing, we shall punish them”.

“Of course, I’m sure that this was a terrorist attack”, said Aleksandr Treshchov, the attorney for the EU representation in Russia. “Truly, no one else could have committed this act, and, certainly, this was a terrible tragedy for many people. Now, I believe that the number one task is to find the terrorists who committed this inhuman act against innocent civilians. Moreover, I think that it proves that [President Medvedev] is correct, whose position is that such cases require special courts. We must be confident that punishment is inevitable for those implicated in the deaths of innocent people. They have no place in our society. We need the special services, the government, and the President to protect us from such acts. We shouldn’t have to worry over the coming year about the lives of our loved ones, of our mothers and fathers. Therefore, I welcome the fact that many people are investigating this case. It shows a new attitude to such catastrophes, where all the people unite in order to track down these villains”, Mr Treshchov emphasised.

For her part, political analyst Nadezhda Arbatova, in an interview with Voice of Russia, suggested that the tragedy of the Neva Express raised very serious challenges to the government, security agencies, and to all of Russian society. “Clearly, everybody needs to be prepared to counter such terrorist acts. Trains such as the Nevsky Express are already in service, and, in future, there are plans to introduce new super-fast trains, whose speed will exceed 400 kilometres (@250 miles) per hour. It certainly raises the question of ensuring the safety of our railroads. Of course, now, it’s too early to say who exactly was involved in this terrorist act. However, if we found confirmation that extremists from the North Caucasus did it, I would ask everybody not to harbour xenophobic sentiments and take out their rage and their grief on ordinary folks who live in Moscow and other Russian cities“.

29 November 2009

Vyacheslav Solovyov

Voice of Russia World Service

http://rus.ruvr.ru/2009/11/29/2447046.html

Patriarch Kirill Called on Every Russian to be Fearless in Fighting Terror

Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev (1946- ) of Moscow and all the Russias

Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias called on every Russian to be fearless in the fight against terror for the sake of its victims’ memory and for the protection of the living. He made this statement in connection with the terrorist attack that caused the derailment of the Nevsky Express high-speed Moscow-to-St Petersburg train. “Our people face a challenge. Any one of us could become the victim of such a crime. The criminals wish to intimidate the entire Russian people. In the pursuit of this aim, the perpetrators violated not only man’s laws, but, also, the eternal law of God”, according to a patriarchal statement, published on the official MP website.

The First Hierarch said that any violent act against innocent civilians was a “crime against God”, which will call down “His terrible vengeance”. However, he also pointed up that we need to see to it that the guilty face “man’s justice”, as well. “We dishonour the memory of those killed and maimed by the terrorists, we leave ourselves defenceless, if we do not let justice do what it must to stop these thugs. This obligation lies not only upon the state, but, also, upon all the people”, Patriarch Kirill said. His Holiness emphasised that many in the stricken train avoided death and serious injury due to the efforts of rescuers, doctors, railway men, and ordinary train passengers who rushed to the aid of their neighbours. “These people set an example for all of us. Let our unity, our concern about the world, and our care for each other’s security leave not a single opportunity for those who want to spread fear, death, and destruction”, he said, RIA-Novosti reported.

29 November 2009

Voice of Russia World Service

http://rus.ruvr.ru/2009/11/29/2447065.html

Editor’s Note:

Now, this is the ticket! There’s no mealy-mouthed “even-handedness” or multi-culti “understanding”. The sheriff is rounding up the posse comitatus, and all good and decent people are welcome to come and saddle up. Fr Valery is handing out the AKs and RPGs, but, we just don’t go out and dispense “justice” on our own. THAT’S many things, but, true justice isn’t one of ‘em. We fight under orders, both man’s orders and God’s orders. After all, we ARE the instruments of His vengeance. Remember, St Aleksandr Nevsky, St Dmitri Donskoi, and St Fyodor Ushakov were all warriors… mighty men of valour. We venerate Kuzma Minin and Dmitri Pozharsky as heroes for having stood up to the papist invaders to ensure that we had an Orthodox faith to practise.

It’s time to stand tall. All the PC mewlers and the cowardly apologists for the terrorists (found mostly, but, not entirely, in academe) can go to their True Father Below. Everyone else can do their part… some will be fighters, some will be healers, some will be speakers, and some will be builders. All of us have a part to play. God help us all.

BMD

German Trial is New Twist in Demjanjuk Saga

Heartless bastards! If you wish to see the face of evil, this is it. Reflect on the fact that THIS is what “zero tolerance” means. Reflect also on the fact that the prissy konvertsy approve of this (in common with their self-congratulatory American suburban neighbours). I pity the Demjanjuk family and ask you all to pray for them. Poor old fellow… he deserves to be home with his family, not awaiting trial. He was nothing but a spear-dragger, you ignorant and boorish bastards. I spit on the lot of you… the only thing that you deserve is to be put against a wall and shot without mercy for your lack of proportion and lack of human decency. K Chortu!

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Once, John Demjanjuk was the focus of the world’s attention for the bloodcurdling crimes he stood accused of. Today, he’s attracting notice for being the lowest-ranking person to go on trial for Nazi crimes in World War II. The latest chapter in a 32-year legal saga brings the retired Ohio autoworker to a court in Munich in a case opening Monday that breaks new ground in Germany’s pursuit of alleged Holocaust perpetrators. If successful, it could significantly lower the bar for who’s considered important enough to go to jail for being part of the Nazi apparatus. In the 1980s, Demjanjuk stood trial in Israel, accused of being the notoriously brutal guard “Ivan the Terrible” at the Treblinka extermination camp. They convicted him, sentencing him to death, then, freed him when an Israeli court overturned the ruling, saying the evidence showed he was the victim of mistaken identity. Now, at age 89, he’s accused of serving as a low-ranking guard at the Sobibór death camp, charged with being an accessory to the murders of 27,900 people during the time he’s alleged to have been there. Demjanjuk maintains he was a victim of the Nazis, first, wounded as a Soviet soldier fighting German forces, then, captured, and held as a prisoner of war under brutal conditions. German prosecutors paint a different picture. After the Ukrainian-born Demjanjuk was in German captivity, they maintain, he volunteered to serve with the fanatical German SS, going to Sobibór in Nazi-occupied Poland. It’s the first time prosecutors have tried someone so allegedly low-ranking, without proof of a specific offence. If they convict Demjanjuk, other low-ranking suspects could face prosecution.

Efraim Zuroff, the top Nazi-hunter at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said, “This definitely marks a change in the decades-old policies of the German judiciary, a positive change”. Immediately after the war, war-crimes trials run by the Allied Powers convicted top Nazis such as Hermann Göring. Investigations of lower-ranking figures eventually fell to German courts. Many of those trials ended with short sentences, or acquittal, of suspects in greater positions of responsibility than Demjanjuk allegedly had. Demjanjuk faces accusations of having served as a “Wachmann”, a guard, the lowest rank of “Hilfswillige” volunteers, who were subordinate to German SS men. For example, Karl Streibel, commandant of the SS Trawniki training camp where the Germans allegedly trained Demjanjuk as a guard, stood trial in Hamburg, but his judges acquitted him in 1976, ruling that it hadn’t been proven that he knew what the guards being trained would be used for. However, today’s judges grew up in the 1950s and 1960s, and, recently, approached war crimes cases differently from their predecessors. In August, the same court that’ll hear Demjanjuk’s case convicted Josef Scheungraber, a former German officer, of murder for the massacre of 10 civilians in Italy in 1944, even though no witness saw him give the order. There are no direct living witnesses in Demjanjuk’s case either, but prosecutors argue that if he was a guard at the death camp, that necessarily proves his involvement in the death machinery. Kurt Schrimm, head of the special German prosecutors’ office responsible for investigating Nazi-era crimes, said, “In the early 1950s, there were certainly some mistakes made, and sometimes there may have been an agenda behind it. However, one must remember that our office embarked since its founding in 1958 into completely uncharted territory. It’s unique that a people pursues their own crimes over decades, and we’re always learning more”.

Demjanjuk’s family argues that there’s pressure from the Simon Wiesenthal Center, the US Justice Department, and others to try him. John Demjanjuk Jr told the Associated Press in a telephone interview, “I think they’re going to push forward to have the trial no matter what, to have a media event, to make it seem like Germany is doing what it can to hunt down and prosecute so-called Nazi war criminals”, adding that his father suffers from a bone marrow disease and could only have months to live. Schrimm said it wasn’t until 2008, when his prosecutors’ office found lists of Jews transported to Sobibór during the time Demjanjuk was allegedly there, that there was enough evidence to pursue a case against him in Germany. Now, he said, there’s an obligation to proceed with the trial. Schrimm said, “It’s naturally difficult to deal with men who are soon in their 90th year. However, there are no doubts… the lawmakers decided in 1979 to remove the statute of limitations for murder, so, therefore, I see no reason to treat this case any differently”. Proving the case is another matter. Demjanjuk maintains he was never at the camp and questions how authentic one of the prosecution’s main pieces of evidence is… an SS identity card that they say features a photo of a young, round-faced Demjanjuk and that says he worked at Sobibór. He claims to be a victim of mistaken identity; a Red Army conscript from the Ukraine, captured in the Crimea in May 1942, and held prisoner until joining the Vlasov Army. Germany formed this force of anti-communist Soviet POWs and others to fight with them against the Soviets in the final months of the war.

Demjanjuk, who faces trial in Munich because he lived in the area briefly after the war, emigrated to the USA in 1952 and gained citizenship in 1958. The USA extradited him to Israel in 1986 after the US Justice Department’s Office of Special Investigations, or OSI, said it had evidence that he was “Ivan the Terrible”. He went on trial in 1987, being convicted and sentenced to death. However, in 1993, the Israeli high court overturned the ruling and freed him after it received evidence that another Ukrainian, not Demjanjuk, was that Nazi guard. At the trial, former Treblinka prisoners misidentified Demjanjuk as Ivan the Terrible. However, this time, there are no Sobibór survivors who claim to remember him at all. Thomas Blatt, a Sobibór survivor whose mother, father, and brother were killed immediately on arrival at the camp in April 1943, is to testify at the German trial, but he concedes that even if he had met Demjanjuk, he wouldn’t be able to remember him after so many years. “I don’t remember the faces of my parents now”, said Blatt, 82. “How could I remember him?” However, he said he still looks forward to testifying about the role of the camp guards, whom he recalls seeing returning from the gas chambers, their boots splattered with the blood of Jews who resisted. “That is what I can tell, only what the group (has) done. They weren’t regular guardsmen. They were murderers”.

Some evidence against Demjanjuk comes from statements attributed to Ignat Danilchenko, a now-deceased Ukrainian who once served in the Red Army, exiled to Siberia following World War II for helping the Nazis. In 1979, he told the Soviet KGB that he served with Demjanjuk at Sobibór and that Demjanjuk “like all guards in the camp, participated in the mass killing of Jews”. However, the OSI itself questioned his statements’ validity, saying in reports that there are “numerous factual errors”. If convicted, Demjanjuk faces a possible 15-year sentence, although he could be given credit for some or all the seven years he spent behind bars in Israel. However, even if acquitted, Demjanjuk will likely have to remain in Germany because the USA revoked his citizenship. Demjanjuk Jr said, “There’s no justice in this case, regardless of the outcome”.

29 November 2009

David Rising

Associated Press

As quoted in Yahoo! News

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091129/ap_on_re_eu/eu_germany_trying_demjanjuk_3

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Here’s what I think of you goodthinkers and your “zero tolerance”. Nuts to you! Grow up and get some good-sense, too. NO… I don’t have to “like it”. Makes ya reach for the jug, doesn’t it?

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Editor:

Firstly, this badly-written piece resembles Trotskyite propaganda at its worst. Mr Rising, hang your head in shame. You didn’t even know the proper name of General A A Vlasov’s force, the Russian Liberation Army (there was no “Vlasov Army”, you bloody boob… you’re supposedly educated, after all). That means that you only have limited knowledge of World War II; it’s restricted to what you learnt in PC textbooks in college. It wasn’t your most egregious error, but let’s leave it at that. Secondly, did you note the self-congratulatory tone of all involved in this? It’s enough to make decent people hurl in disgust.

“I don’t remember the faces of my parents now,” said Blatt, 82. “How could I remember him?” However, he said he still looks forward to testifying about the role of the camp guards…

THIS is the evidence? God Almighty, please, do spare me. They’re all bloviating as though Mr Demjanjuk was some sort of evil and cunning demon. He wasn’t such. He was an ordinary fellow caught up in the maelström of the Russian Front in World War II. He did what he had to, to survive. He gave no orders, not even as a subordinate NCO. He planned no killings. There’s no evidence that he even laid a hand on any Jew. Then, why are some cowardly windbags persecuting him and why are they putting his family through sheer hell and needless pain and grief? I think that they wouldn’t even allow his family to bring his remains home for burial, the inhuman brutes.

Look at the photo at the head of this piece again. The poor old coot can’t even stand on his own two feet, so, the immigration agents had to carry him out of his home. I don’t blame the agents; they were only following the orders of some officious scumbag. I have no doubt that they are as angered at this as I am… they not only can’t do anything about it, they have to either praise such wickedness or keep their mouths shut… poor fellows, let me pour you all a drink… crazy and demented world that we live in, isn’t it? THIS is why I hate the konvertsy and everything that they stand for. They approve of such… they’re such goodthinkers. They believe that America the Bloody is an exemplar for the world. Never forget that America rained bombs on Belgrade on Orthodox Easter, but declared a bombing halt on Iraq for Ramadan. That is sheer hypocrisy, rank duplicity, and absolute double standards. America once stood for something… now, it’s nothing but the bottom line and satisfying mewling “interest groups”. God, do spare me!

I weep for the Demjanjuk family. As for those who persecute them… I wish that God sends you a tithe of what you have heartlessly sent the Demjanjuks (note well that I don’t wish the same on them, only a fraction thereof). Watch ’em scream and holler at the injustice of the world! I’d just walk by, spit in their general direction, and say, “It couldn’t have happened to nicer folk”. This is the sort of thing that screams to heaven for vengeance. God, don’t delay your justice… these pigs are so far gone that they’ll never listen to you, even if you sent plagues and scorpions. I know that we live in a fallen world… but must it be so obviously and maliciously twisted? God, help all us all.

BMD

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