On November 30 and December 8, 1941, approximately 25,000 Jews were murdered in the Rumbula Forest outside Riga, Latvia. Along with the massacre at Babyn Yar, the Rumbula Massacre represents one of the largest two-day Nazi mass shootings. Only three people who arrived at the Rumbula killing site survived the Holocaust.
80 years after the massacres, this Museum program revisits the events at Rumbula and explores their legacy. The program features work-in-progress clips from Rumbula’s Echo, a forthcoming historical documentary film from director and producer Mitchell Lieber. The program also features a discussion between Lieber; Ilya Lensky, Director of the Jewish Museum of Latvia; Elie Valk, Chairman of the Association of Latvian and Estonian Jews in Israel; and Richards Plavnieks, Assistant Professor of History at Florida Southern College and author of Nazi Collaborators on Trial During the Cold War: Viktors Arajs and the Latvian Auxiliary Security Police.
Watch the program below.
Recording transcript for Rumbula Remembered: 80 Years Since the Mass Executions
This program’s original recording transcript is below. This transcription was created automatically during a live program so may contain inaccurate transcriptions of some words.
Ari Goldstein: i'm Ari Goldstein, Senior Public programs producer at the Museum of Jewish heritage, a living memorial to the Holocaust.
00:00:52.560 --> 00:01:03.000
Ari Goldstein: we're gathered today to mark 80 years since 25,000 Jews were murdered latvia's rumble the forest on November 30 and December 8 1941.
00:01:04.320 --> 00:01:11.880
Ari Goldstein: Along with the massacre at babin er the rumble the massacres represent one of the largest to day mass shootings perpetrated by the Nazis.
00:01:13.050 --> 00:01:21.210
Ari Goldstein: The victims that rumbles included Boris flurries grandmother mother shana sister gianna and teenage girlfriend Luba tresco Nova.
00:01:22.080 --> 00:01:40.320
Ari Goldstein: lori is the subject of the museum's new exhibition or a slurry nothing to do, but to try, which is presented in partnership with Boris lori art foundation larry's early paintings on display in the exhibition reflect the extraordinary loss imposed on his life at the killings at rumblings.
00:01:41.400 --> 00:01:55.140
Ari Goldstein: That sense of loss ripples across latvia's Jewish community during and after the Holocaust and it remains today around the world in New York, Israel, Riga and all places where Latvian Jews made their homes.
00:01:56.580 --> 00:02:01.440
Ari Goldstein: today's program is both the commemoration and an opportunity for historical inquiry.
00:02:02.250 --> 00:02:14.760
Ari Goldstein: By teaching and learning about what happened we remember the victims and we endow a tragic history with context and meaning, please feel free to share questions and zoom Q amp a box throughout the next hour.
00:02:16.080 --> 00:02:26.370
Ari Goldstein: today's program will feature work in progress clips from rumbling echo a forthcoming historical documentary film from director and producer Mitchell lieber.
00:02:27.150 --> 00:02:33.060
Ari Goldstein: Mitch, will serve as our moderator today has directed three documentary shorts related to the Holocaust in Latvia.
00:02:33.630 --> 00:02:46.230
Ari Goldstein: During his early career in radio Mitch produced a regular program of documentaries and interviews chicago's w and I be consulted to major market stations and FCC licensing and helped found a national public radio organization.
00:02:47.460 --> 00:02:50.640
Ari Goldstein: In addition to Mitch, we have some very distinguished guests on our panel.
00:02:51.780 --> 00:02:56.340
Ari Goldstein: ilya lenski has served for 13 years as Director of the Museum of Jews in Latvia.
00:02:57.120 --> 00:03:08.070
Ari Goldstein: he's also a contributor to publications, ranging from the handbook of anti semitism to latvia's national encyclopedia and he speaks around the world about the Holocaust and Jewish history in Latvia.
00:03:09.060 --> 00:03:18.090
Ari Goldstein: At Yahoo or le valcke is the long time, Chairman of the Association of laughing and Estonian Jews in Israel and a former Israeli Ambassador to Belarus.
00:03:19.500 --> 00:03:28.110
Ari Goldstein: richards plug nick's his assistant professor of history at Florida seven college and author of Nazi collaborators on trial during the Cold War.
00:03:28.590 --> 00:03:39.300
Ari Goldstein: Victor arise and the Latvian exhilarated security police and preparing the book Richard spent years researching the Holocaust and Latvia and months at war crimes trial archives in Germany.
00:03:40.470 --> 00:03:45.300
Ari Goldstein: Mitch Elliot Elliot and richards Thank you each for being here feel free to get started.
00:03:47.730 --> 00:03:48.810
Mitchell Lieber: Thank you very much, sorry.
00:03:50.070 --> 00:03:59.400
Mitchell Lieber: There have been important memorial services for the 30th anniversary of rumbling, as I mentioned, this is a bit different in as another type of commemoration.
00:03:59.850 --> 00:04:15.450
Mitchell Lieber: we'll revisit what occurred using clips from the rough draft of Google is ECO as a springboard for discussion on the filmmaker and journalist here, so the clips are my primary comments and i'm pleased to be joined by our expert panelists.
00:04:16.590 --> 00:04:28.440
Mitchell Lieber: First, to set this up what led up to November 29 1941 in late June 1941 the Nazis invaded the former Soviet Union, including sort of it occupied last year.
00:04:29.460 --> 00:04:38.010
Mitchell Lieber: By July 1 the Nazis to control of Riga on Friday July 4 Riga synagogues were burned several with choose locked inside.
00:04:39.240 --> 00:04:46.410
Mitchell Lieber: Also, in early July, the night actions began, please knock on doors and arrested Jewish men who were never heard from again.
00:04:47.910 --> 00:05:00.060
Mitchell Lieber: In August, it was announced the Jews must wear yellow stars must walk in the street, not on the sidewalk and must have been in their homes and move to want to read this poorest areas which became the rugged ghetto.
00:05:01.380 --> 00:05:08.070
Mitchell Lieber: Eventually, it was fenced and then close to unauthorized entrance or exit with guards.
00:05:12.990 --> 00:05:21.690
Mitchell Lieber: So who was in the ghetto and annual you tell us a little bit about the residents in the room, together with a work.
00:05:26.340 --> 00:05:30.660
Ilya Lensky: I think image so previous.
00:05:32.010 --> 00:05:34.110
Ilya Lensky: period of.
00:05:35.460 --> 00:05:42.240
Ilya Lensky: Nazi occupation took lives of about on different estimates between five and 7000 Jews.
00:05:43.560 --> 00:06:02.220
Ilya Lensky: Mostly man what you mentioned, who were imprisoned and later murdered in between naked forest so by August 23 1941 when was announced the creation of the ghetto We estimate that could have been about 30,000 Jews left in Riga.
00:06:02.880 --> 00:06:25.500
Ilya Lensky: And so the Jews were given to month to relegate to the ghetto on 25th of October the gates of get the word closed and the statistics we have that in the ghetto by that moment where i'm 29,602 people have them 5652 children.
00:06:26.580 --> 00:06:31.860
Ilya Lensky: 8300 people who were deemed a work.
00:06:33.120 --> 00:06:45.870
Ilya Lensky: fit for work and 15 and a half thousand approximately people who were fit for work of them 6143 men and 9500 women.
00:06:47.070 --> 00:06:56.430
Ilya Lensky: So what's important before the holiday is this area have some Jewish population, but most that was populated by non Jews who were.
00:06:57.570 --> 00:07:06.780
Ilya Lensky: relegated either the Jews bought from them, the apartments or they were forced to leave their apartments to to give space for the Jews.
00:07:08.430 --> 00:07:14.850
Ilya Lensky: Initially, they were before the Holocaust, there were some 9000 people residing there during the Holocaust 30,000.
00:07:15.930 --> 00:07:20.340
Ilya Lensky: And in the ghetto was the whole spectrum of Jewish society.
00:07:21.360 --> 00:07:32.820
Ilya Lensky: The head of the so called algebra committee or what pickle juice Council was prominent lawyer me hi Linda yes chef who was also the head of the Association of.
00:07:33.750 --> 00:07:47.610
Ilya Lensky: Jews veterans of independence were there were people like of interval Shaw knock at prominent timber merchant and junior bloom and now people from all walks of life secular and religious younger and elder.
00:07:48.660 --> 00:07:50.850
Ilya Lensky: All of them perished in Room Villa.
00:07:53.820 --> 00:07:57.660
Mitchell Lieber: Sir, as you said, it was a complete cross section.
00:07:59.100 --> 00:08:09.060
Mitchell Lieber: of society, because it was the entire Jewish population of Riga that remained after that first phase of the Holocaust, the documentary has a sequence on musicians.
00:08:09.480 --> 00:08:20.310
Mitchell Lieber: Artists and writers and together and here are just a few opportunity Gregor Shelton to post war became a cantor in Boston his wife concert violinist Sarah rushing.
00:08:21.180 --> 00:08:32.250
Mitchell Lieber: keyboards lori with his family, as was mentioned already, the leading Jewish historian of the time, Stephen do not who years earlier and pledging Riga and.
00:08:32.880 --> 00:08:49.350
Mitchell Lieber: didn't have was a really the philosophical mentor of many of the founders of EVO the Institute also this name will come up in our last clip today aspiring writer, and he hates colson then 17 was there with her younger sister and parents.
00:08:55.020 --> 00:09:03.630
Mitchell Lieber: In late November in ilya correct me if i'm wrong, I believe it was the 27th that a barbed wire fence was erected sectioning off the small ghetto.
00:09:04.950 --> 00:09:09.870
Mitchell Lieber: which was a completely new thing men of working age are forced to leave their families and move there.
00:09:10.530 --> 00:09:25.350
Mitchell Lieber: And these stills from the film you'll see a map of the ghetto than the creation of the small ghetto, and then a photo of loses streets showing the fence on each side of the street separating the large data from the small ghetto, so if we can see that already please.
00:09:36.000 --> 00:09:37.380
Mitchell Lieber: So this is the largest ghetto.
00:09:42.360 --> 00:09:45.210
Mitchell Lieber: overnight pretty much stay small ghetto appears.
00:09:47.220 --> 00:09:50.580
Mitchell Lieber: And young men are relegated there and there, you can see, the two fences.
00:09:57.840 --> 00:09:59.100
Mitchell Lieber: Do you want to comment on.
00:10:00.570 --> 00:10:03.090
Mitchell Lieber: What people expect it at that point, what you knew about it.
00:10:05.070 --> 00:10:25.500
Ilya Lensky: We of course we don't know what people expected people were told that there are the rest of the population or is being resettled to another place of imprisonment so that's why they were ordered to pad their things so it was yeah people instead of there being separated from their families.
00:10:26.700 --> 00:10:35.880
Ilya Lensky: But the major tragedy of Holocaust in lackey and places like Lafayette the people to the very last moment, they hoped that they will live.
00:10:36.690 --> 00:10:52.950
Ilya Lensky: in poor conditions and hunger humiliated, but they will live many people would say you know we have experience of living in the ghettos, you know in 18th century wearing yellow badges we've seen all of that that's bad that's tragic but that's Jewish history.
00:10:53.970 --> 00:11:00.510
Ilya Lensky: They hoped to the last very moment, probably on the brink of the pit that the worst thing has already happened.
00:11:01.590 --> 00:11:13.290
Ilya Lensky: So we don't know what I mean yeah many of them more and what happened some of them presumed that they would be killed, and you can read of that and memoirs of elementary Bush the prominent sculpture.
00:11:13.890 --> 00:11:30.930
Ilya Lensky: who wrote his memoir in the 50s but the probably most of the people hoped that, although being separated from the relatives that with them and relatives would would somehow survive and and continue, and maybe we'll witness to see hitler's demise whether we're all hoping for.
00:11:34.380 --> 00:11:41.790
Mitchell Lieber: Sugar or male survivors it's very moving here, one can only imagine being in their place.
00:11:43.980 --> 00:11:58.200
Mitchell Lieber: Several male survivors told me that they thought the small guy was being formed, because the men were a threat, and in fact the men might be killed, but of course nobody knew everybody wondered.
00:12:00.060 --> 00:12:05.430
Mitchell Lieber: let's look at what happened on the night of November 29 and.
00:12:06.930 --> 00:12:08.400
Mitchell Lieber: Then I stayed November 30.
00:12:09.630 --> 00:12:10.050
Mitchell Lieber: The clip.
00:12:21.720 --> 00:12:30.120
During the day there were rumors that Z will be resettling the whole ghetto to differently.
00:12:32.940 --> 00:12:34.410
00:12:38.190 --> 00:12:44.580
The kid is the cherry shaded ravi least a place for it now eludes us.
00:12:46.710 --> 00:12:52.290
Yes, some other with their answers so and I see a patient Doris here.
00:12:54.000 --> 00:12:56.850
Again, early intervention needed chain old so.
00:12:57.960 --> 00:13:06.300
He said what Saddam Nicola don't have so loads as though lois grammatical mistake early ud say.
00:13:08.460 --> 00:13:14.400
They visited all together my mom is my sister my little brother me altogether.
00:13:19.590 --> 00:13:21.600
Mitchell Lieber: or richards private networks.
00:13:22.680 --> 00:13:25.440
Mitchell Lieber: will tell us about the.
00:13:26.790 --> 00:13:31.920
Mitchell Lieber: The police Nazi police force and laughing police forces.
00:13:33.450 --> 00:13:35.970
Mitchell Lieber: That the Jews facing that we're rounding together.
00:13:38.490 --> 00:13:51.270
Richards Plavnieks: Thank you message on October 31 less than a week after the Riga ghetto was sealed higher SS and police leader Friedrich Seattle was transferred to Latvia from occupied Ukraine.
00:13:51.780 --> 00:14:05.670
Richards Plavnieks: where he had orchestrated the killing it by the yard and September, he was sent to Riga, specifically because of his record, he was trusted by himmler to carry out killings more energetically and more expeditiously than his predecessor.
00:14:07.260 --> 00:14:23.700
Richards Plavnieks: Indeed, he would organize the deaths in two days of nearly as many Latvian Jews, as had been killed in the whole country in the previous three months, he arrived at his new post on November 14 and immediately spent the next two weeks meticulously planning the rumble operation.
00:14:24.720 --> 00:14:33.270
Richards Plavnieks: He selected the site he had half a dozen specially designed inverted pyramid pits excavated by Soviet pow.
00:14:34.050 --> 00:14:49.170
Richards Plavnieks: He gathered motley assembly available German and laugh and security units for the purpose, he devised a detailed timetable to maximize the use of limited daylight Andy requisition a couple dozen of the necessary motor vehicles.
00:14:50.370 --> 00:15:02.700
Richards Plavnieks: jaco disdained even to talk to Latvian subordinates so the details we're coordinated by his German deputies all together about 1700 men were involved about 1000 of whom were Latvian.
00:15:03.840 --> 00:15:14.940
Richards Plavnieks: Various units converged on the ghetto according to plan and activity began at 4am our eyes commando men spearheaded by squad of a dozen German sd.
00:15:15.330 --> 00:15:20.910
Richards Plavnieks: began a west to east sweep of the ghetto shouting and driving every inhabitant into the street.
00:15:21.450 --> 00:15:27.420
Richards Plavnieks: Once every door had been pounded they went back to their starting point and searched room to room for people who are hiding.
00:15:28.380 --> 00:15:41.490
Richards Plavnieks: Meanwhile, other men from the commando were organizing people into columns in the street, they had cut holes in the ghetto fences facing the direction of rumble up in here all handed over to Yulia.
00:15:44.160 --> 00:16:02.340
Ilya Lensky: Ah, so basically what it was really important is that the prisoners, as they didn't know what's going to happen so they were just marched with all their belongings walking slowly actually the father Mitch that you show in the movie.
00:16:03.390 --> 00:16:13.230
Ilya Lensky: is the only photo whenever it was taken secretly and our later it was brought to military Museum in Reagan the 15th.
00:16:14.340 --> 00:16:23.370
Ilya Lensky: So it shows these kind of people with backs, so that they was very cold and it was very snowy so people were walking.
00:16:25.200 --> 00:16:26.100
Ilya Lensky: slowly.
00:16:27.480 --> 00:16:39.540
Ilya Lensky: People were attacked and beaten, so there was a there were different groups in the guts of already so you had some German lower rank people.
00:16:40.020 --> 00:16:51.690
Ilya Lensky: um and there were so brutal that actual some of the prisoners remember their names like to hell has her annoying month like really low rank almost surgeon train, probably, we could say.
00:16:52.170 --> 00:17:05.490
Ilya Lensky: And, of course, there were people from our ice unit which we're calling going prisoners and it's important, these are not people who would usually guard the gatto there was separate unit guarding the gap to the.
00:17:06.180 --> 00:17:17.520
Ilya Lensky: Union by lieutenant Dan sculpture clubs which we're already sort of familiar to the victim, so these were completely new people are so.
00:17:18.300 --> 00:17:34.680
Ilya Lensky: So this was the beginning gallery of the shocking experience and it it's mentioned in all the possible memoirs how this experience was different from miserable and humiliating life in to get.
00:17:37.320 --> 00:17:49.740
Mitchell Lieber: Your columns were about five across in about 200 deep so roughly 1000 Jews per column, and the forced march was about nine and a half kilometers or nearly six miles.
00:17:52.170 --> 00:18:10.320
Mitchell Lieber: In the documentary co hertzberg he saw earlier than 14 describes a Latvian policeman attempting to rape her in her ghetto apartment and how she was rescued from this actually by another Latvian policeman who was a teenager who recognized her from school.
00:18:13.410 --> 00:18:16.350
Mitchell Lieber: what's good to clip three.
00:18:17.790 --> 00:18:21.360
Mitchell Lieber: And look at the description of the forced march.
00:18:29.700 --> 00:18:39.330
On directions entangle for those that she says manner omaha the yoked dimension, the yoke schnell isms again.
00:18:40.350 --> 00:18:56.520
Only alone, he can to the kingdom hall game surveying and I see given go free need to sharpen their own zero but gave to me know when the police I just need to get fell in the world was one more game to she's indicator that shows in the kingdom.
00:18:57.600 --> 00:19:01.200
It was blood blood and water and snow.
00:19:02.340 --> 00:19:04.830
It was, I cannot tell you it was.
00:19:06.000 --> 00:19:14.190
A human being, cannot but I have seen with my eyes, this is like a picture always when I sleep sometimes they see that in my dreams.
00:19:17.850 --> 00:19:21.300
Mitchell Lieber: Here, would you like to comment about the shootings.
00:19:22.770 --> 00:19:23.580
Mitchell Lieber: In the gutter.
00:19:24.030 --> 00:19:25.080
Mitchell Lieber: Well, most logical approach.
00:19:25.380 --> 00:19:41.190
Ilya Lensky: would be to say what the command on so these shootings during the walking so while people are being convoy from the get to already in the streets of the ghetto and then along the way and with corpses being left along the road.
00:19:42.300 --> 00:19:49.560
Ilya Lensky: They appear everywhere actually one of the most picture descriptions, we have in the witness account of someone called head, but so course.
00:19:50.460 --> 00:20:01.350
Ilya Lensky: Who was having one of the columns as a member of our ice unit, he was a sort of, we could say exhilarating to our eyes and he was responsible for the.
00:20:02.490 --> 00:20:14.130
Ilya Lensky: garage and weapon storage of the icu and he was a famous laughing pilot and so as a story, and so on, so he he describes in very much detail.
00:20:14.940 --> 00:20:24.000
Ilya Lensky: How old you know the road was lined with corpses and puddles of blood and this appears everywhere and dead children.
00:20:24.420 --> 00:20:40.620
Ilya Lensky: is also something that everybody mentions, and obviously Bush he writes how he's walking in the snow that is melting, because there are still warm corpses lying on it and how he sees bottle with milk.
00:20:41.160 --> 00:20:49.230
Ilya Lensky: and so on, and in the second half of the day, there was formed well on the orders of Nazis, the.
00:20:50.490 --> 00:20:57.990
Ilya Lensky: Jewish committee organized several units that would be going collecting corpses in the streets, so they would be given.
00:20:59.010 --> 00:21:23.910
Ilya Lensky: sledges to put corpses to and the courses were brought to the old Jewish cemetery a hole in the Wall was created, and they were buried in a mass grave next to the wall, so this summer special group was working in Reno and they've they've seemed discovered this mouse grave and this also.
00:21:25.200 --> 00:21:29.190
Ilya Lensky: is remembered by many and they're also there was drawing by arcuri of.
00:21:30.270 --> 00:21:40.950
Ilya Lensky: The artists who was also in together how this burial happens, and this is also what what's everybody remembers saying kudisch on on this grave.
00:21:43.230 --> 00:21:43.620
Mitchell Lieber: Richard.
00:21:45.630 --> 00:21:47.400
Mitchell Lieber: Your comments on the shootings.
00:21:48.600 --> 00:21:49.290
Mitchell Lieber: India.
00:21:50.520 --> 00:21:58.470
Richards Plavnieks: The killings began in the apartments and in the stairwells in the ghetto of anyone who could not or would not leave the ghetto.
00:21:59.460 --> 00:22:05.670
Richards Plavnieks: disobedience was initially prevalent some people refuse to budge and they were shot on the spot.
00:22:06.360 --> 00:22:19.590
Richards Plavnieks: Others were simply insufficiently mobile due to illness or age and these two were killed, out of hand others in this category will put on buses and trucks and driven to rumble about the vast majority would have to walk.
00:22:20.940 --> 00:22:32.310
Richards Plavnieks: organizing the planned 1000 person columns was more difficult than expected German sd oversaw the process, while our eyes as men did most of the physical coercion and intimidation.
00:22:32.790 --> 00:22:45.510
Richards Plavnieks: And the killing of anyone who seemed uncooperative many ghetto in the witnesses close to 5000 people had been sequestered several days earlier when the ghetto was partitioned on the small get have had been created.
00:22:46.110 --> 00:22:59.070
Richards Plavnieks: Within its confines Latvian Jews capable of heavy Labor were to be preserved ultimately between 600 and 1000 people were killed, right in the ghetto in the street within the walls of the ghetto.
00:22:59.610 --> 00:23:06.480
Richards Plavnieks: survivors who were peering through the windows, or who observed the aftermath later uniformly described absolute savitri.
00:23:07.560 --> 00:23:12.390
Richards Plavnieks: The events that they witnessed inside the ghetto that morning were a massacre unto themselves.
00:23:13.500 --> 00:23:25.860
Richards Plavnieks: The first column departed on schedule around 6am the escorts of the first few columns had time to return to the ghetto to lead a fresh column, but the guards of column sent later in the morning just went once.
00:23:26.610 --> 00:23:36.840
Richards Plavnieks: The last column left together what about noon along the route, the columns tended to stretch out and some people who are unable to keep up the pace were shot.
00:23:38.550 --> 00:23:45.600
Richards Plavnieks: on the side of the road, so that the whole column could meet to maintain jacqueline's timetable.
00:23:49.350 --> 00:23:59.250
Mitchell Lieber: eyewitnesses even saw babies being thrown out of windows and again, one can only imagine the mayhem involved.
00:23:59.790 --> 00:24:19.350
Mitchell Lieber: In this German and Austrian Jews who some weeks later occupy the apartments vacated by the murdered reduce found dried blood on walls frozen food on the table dentures frozen and glasses of water, and it was clear that and frozen red marks, no, it was clear that people had.
00:24:20.820 --> 00:24:21.900
Mitchell Lieber: Left quickly.
00:24:22.920 --> 00:24:23.400
Mitchell Lieber: and
00:24:28.200 --> 00:24:33.690
Mitchell Lieber: riches would you talk about the organization at the killing site itself and the shooting at room boy.
00:24:36.240 --> 00:24:41.550
Richards Plavnieks: So the first column of Jews from the ghetto reached rumble at 9am on schedule.
00:24:42.150 --> 00:24:50.790
Richards Plavnieks: The density of the police escort increased as the victims, leaving the road and entering the forest got ever closer to the shooting and pits.
00:24:51.300 --> 00:25:05.100
Richards Plavnieks: They proceeded through stages relinquishing valuables here codes here shoes here as thousands passed by these piles grew to immense proportions, the people arrived at the final killing site in their underwear.
00:25:06.240 --> 00:25:11.790
Richards Plavnieks: to deter a mass flight attempt several machine guns were visibly deployed to cover the whole area.
00:25:12.780 --> 00:25:19.590
Richards Plavnieks: yak on insisted that all of the men under his command witness the events firsthand to share in the complicity.
00:25:20.190 --> 00:25:31.830
Richards Plavnieks: He also invited other high level percentages in the occupation machine and Latvian collaborators to attend, so a sort of coterie of dignitaries surrounded Jacqueline and observe the shooting all day.
00:25:32.400 --> 00:25:37.380
Richards Plavnieks: And intoxicated victors authorized belligerently proud the environments as well.
00:25:38.070 --> 00:25:47.400
Richards Plavnieks: alcohol in the form of schnapps was available to all the participants all day long half a bottle for each man and a full bottle for every officer.
00:25:48.240 --> 00:25:59.580
Richards Plavnieks: yeah calm did not trust Latvian shooters so the men pulling the trigger is at the pits where his own select German SS a dozen men, some of whom had been with Jacqueline in Ukraine.
00:26:00.060 --> 00:26:10.590
Richards Plavnieks: They were armed with captured Soviet submachine guns with 50 round drum magazines set to single shot each shooter would take a break, once he had empty this magazine.
00:26:11.700 --> 00:26:16.290
Richards Plavnieks: The pits for so huge that the shooters were down among the bodies.
00:26:17.550 --> 00:26:25.380
Richards Plavnieks: Each group of victims had to go down into the pit on their own power and then lay down on the victims who had already been shot.
00:26:26.280 --> 00:26:42.810
Richards Plavnieks: Of the shooters fired at the head of each victim from a from a distance of two meters the shootings began in mid morning and stopped after sundown one German SS men was injured in the operation, he was hit in the eye by ricochet.
00:26:45.900 --> 00:26:52.290
Mitchell Lieber: yo yo would you like to talk about the years experience at the low side November 30.
00:26:55.260 --> 00:27:02.880
Ilya Lensky: Well, most of what I know also to say Jewish experience comes from the memoirs or witness accounts have basically three.
00:27:03.480 --> 00:27:22.140
Ilya Lensky: survivors were at room blue line who live long enough to survive the Second World War fried fried or for the whole song ship her memoirs most famous called I survived drink cola and ella guzman medallia and matt to Monday slope range.
00:27:23.640 --> 00:27:27.900
Ilya Lensky: So basically all of them describe terrible cries and and.
00:27:29.490 --> 00:27:39.240
Ilya Lensky: I don't know how to call it hysterics were some psychological reaction as people were approaching, because when they were approaching the forest, it became clear what is happening.
00:27:40.350 --> 00:27:46.650
Ilya Lensky: So so Richard can correct me, but I think that we're approaching in the relatively small groups of 2030 people.
00:27:47.010 --> 00:27:57.630
Ilya Lensky: being kind of separated, so one group did not see what happens in the forest, but the the the gunshots were heard and the first was not as dense as it is today, for example.
00:27:58.020 --> 00:28:12.150
Ilya Lensky: So that was the moment when people realized what is happening and and these cries and and reactions appear everywhere, so we know that some people tried to.
00:28:12.810 --> 00:28:23.370
Ilya Lensky: Talk two guards saying that they're not Jewish, we know that, along with Ellen medallia who managed to survive this way she said that she's.
00:28:23.880 --> 00:28:39.600
Ilya Lensky: laughing marriage to do, and she actually was not lucky enough that there was a person she knew in town of to comes from native town with the same surname but non Jewish who testified that yes, this is our life and relative.
00:28:41.220 --> 00:28:48.810
Ilya Lensky: But, but there were several she mentioned that there were several other women who tried to do the same trick, and she knows nothing of their fate.
00:28:50.700 --> 00:28:51.390
Ilya Lensky: So then.
00:28:52.530 --> 00:29:00.030
Ilya Lensky: People were trying to some mothers were trying to protect their children that also appears in light of witness accounts.
00:29:02.220 --> 00:29:10.560
Ilya Lensky: We could say the reactions were I mean it's useless to say, these are normal reactions of normal reaction, because the very cetacean was.
00:29:11.670 --> 00:29:25.890
Ilya Lensky: beyond any normality or abnormality yeah and and that's how it was interpreted and what's I think i'm working speaking about the the shooters and collaborators also they treated their.
00:29:26.970 --> 00:29:39.450
Ilya Lensky: Experience as something sort of beyond normality as a work that is unpleasant, but it has to be done, so this is the topic that I think appears in many.
00:29:40.530 --> 00:29:52.650
Ilya Lensky: witness accounts and documents that it's an unpleasant thing and also yet cal said that yeah this this has to be done, and I will show you the proper way.
00:29:53.190 --> 00:30:06.960
Ilya Lensky: How it has to be done yeah So this was also important for him to show all these officials from also from civilian administration how things should be done because before that killings we're going to improperly, I will.
00:30:07.380 --> 00:30:18.780
Ilya Lensky: show how to organize them properly that's the dirty work that we're doing for the great benefit of all humankind for better future for everybody.
00:30:19.320 --> 00:30:27.090
Ilya Lensky: yeah so also for killers, this was experience beyond normality and, as you know, one of the considerations why the Nazis.
00:30:27.810 --> 00:30:44.820
Ilya Lensky: switched from mass shootings to gas chambers and the death camps was the psychological impact it had on the shooters yeah, and so they try for the well being of the shooters in them.
00:30:46.350 --> 00:31:02.010
Mitchell Lieber: Right in in there's a documentary called the insurance group of the stuff for gauge, and I believe they say that the average tenure of a and such Griffin shooter was about a month.
00:31:03.180 --> 00:31:04.050
Mitchell Lieber: Just because.
00:31:05.310 --> 00:31:07.770
Mitchell Lieber: After that much time of shooting people close up.
00:31:08.910 --> 00:31:09.480
Mitchell Lieber: and
00:31:11.760 --> 00:31:16.590
Mitchell Lieber: It became difficult for the shooters, of course, not as difficult as it was for the people who they shot.
00:31:17.610 --> 00:31:18.060
Mitchell Lieber: and
00:31:22.560 --> 00:31:38.580
Mitchell Lieber: interesting way to to your point earns 10 occur, the SS construction engineer said he was surprised when he was told how many people, the graves needed to to handle and then you start seeing his calculations of how to put that many people into a great because that was his job.
00:31:39.690 --> 00:31:42.660
Mitchell Lieber: And after the action as.
00:31:44.610 --> 00:31:45.330
Mitchell Lieber: You said.
00:31:48.690 --> 00:31:56.580
Mitchell Lieber: Jews reflected in the ghetto who dead bodies reflected in the ghetto and and buried in the adjacent Jewish cemetery and.
00:31:57.990 --> 00:32:06.930
Mitchell Lieber: And people stayed indoors for a while and after a few days they saw that so called relive what appeared to be the location with shooting some people walking away.
00:32:08.130 --> 00:32:15.270
Mitchell Lieber: Who didn't comply that relocation under armed guard didn't continue so after a few days juice started to go out in the ghetto streets again.
00:32:17.100 --> 00:32:20.460
Mitchell Lieber: And then about a week after the November 30.
00:32:21.660 --> 00:32:36.120
Mitchell Lieber: action and rubella it was announced that on December 8 the remaining half of the large ghetto would be relocated and freedom Nicholson wrote about her experience in her book after watching.
00:32:37.200 --> 00:32:48.660
Mitchell Lieber: The previous relocation from the ghetto she talked about being part of it now, and among those shot war violinists Sarah Russia.
00:32:49.740 --> 00:33:06.720
Mitchell Lieber: Who was also the life of Gregor Shelton the Opera singer and later cantor 17 year old writer any high school sins younger sister was shot so was her mother, so it was her father, so it was any herself, the entire family and.
00:33:07.980 --> 00:33:11.820
Mitchell Lieber: She was certainly there's certainly not the only entire family that was shot.
00:33:13.200 --> 00:33:16.860
Mitchell Lieber: As you heard wars, where his girlfriend his sister and his mother shana.
00:33:18.210 --> 00:33:25.620
Mitchell Lieber: were shot and we'll see that painting by Boris lori called mother before shooting.
00:33:27.300 --> 00:33:39.840
Mitchell Lieber: In the next clip and it's a clip of stills showing boards lori self portrait and his mother shana and the portrait that he called mother before shooting.
00:34:08.550 --> 00:34:09.810
Mitchell Lieber: Even I should mention that.
00:34:11.220 --> 00:34:33.900
Mitchell Lieber: That portrait is actually larger but to fit the thumb frame we saw the the top part of it and Boris laurie was affected for a life by what he experienced in the ghettos were most survivors and you can certainly see it in his heart and.
00:34:35.190 --> 00:34:42.060
Mitchell Lieber: The i'd like to ask you to talk more about how people were affected and and how families were affected.
00:34:47.460 --> 00:34:51.570
Ilya Lensky: Well, basically families did not exist after.
00:34:52.680 --> 00:34:53.490
Ilya Lensky: The killings.
00:34:54.750 --> 00:34:56.070
Ilya Lensky: yeah so some.
00:34:58.290 --> 00:35:08.070
Ilya Lensky: Most most of the people who were later in prison than the so called small get to these were men separated for hard Labor.
00:35:09.840 --> 00:35:22.260
Ilya Lensky: Also people after the first action already men older, they were separated so at some point, they were in few days that were allowed to go to the small get to where they were still there.
00:35:24.300 --> 00:35:29.160
Ilya Lensky: Their members of their family and so they've spoke extensively about.
00:35:31.590 --> 00:35:35.790
Ilya Lensky: about the experience and and at that moment, they understood that.
00:35:36.960 --> 00:35:44.670
Ilya Lensky: there's possibility that they were will never meet the game yeah and it is, it is described, also in the memoirs of almost a Bush.
00:35:46.590 --> 00:36:03.780
Ilya Lensky: Where they discussed possibly escaping together and then discussing that there are considerations, there are there are a small child and so on, so so one topic will never have an answer to is how many people would be ready to escape but.
00:36:05.370 --> 00:36:07.260
Ilya Lensky: The other choice because.
00:36:08.730 --> 00:36:16.860
Ilya Lensky: Because of whatever reasons yeah so because they didn't wants to abandoned children abandoned elderly elderly parents or relatives.
00:36:18.420 --> 00:36:29.280
Ilya Lensky: So this is what we what we don't know yeah so that's something we we can call a survivor's bias, we know their story, and we know the choices they made but.
00:36:30.510 --> 00:36:44.850
Ilya Lensky: What choices and motivation had people who did not survive with them know and that's why the founder of our museum on the Semester minus who also appears in the movie who is nine to six now and he's still actively working.
00:36:45.990 --> 00:36:53.430
Ilya Lensky: He refuses to talk extensively about his biography he says that the duty of everybody who has survived.
00:36:53.910 --> 00:37:06.150
Ilya Lensky: Is not to speak for yourself but to be the voice for those who were killed because the history of the Holocaust and the history of those who were killed, not the history of those who miraculously survived.
00:37:09.960 --> 00:37:13.830
Mitchell Lieber: Your Karma Julia remind me Dr David boater.
00:37:15.210 --> 00:37:39.990
Mitchell Lieber: One of the first people to conduct interviews with Holocaust survivors after the war, using a wire recorder NDP camps, and I believe this began around 4546 1946 and when Dr boater collected, some of the interviews into a book The title the book, I did not interview the dead.
00:37:45.000 --> 00:37:46.830
Mitchell Lieber: Sea man dude not the.
00:37:48.000 --> 00:38:07.050
Mitchell Lieber: winning Jewish historian of the time was believe shot and we get on December 8 and, as seen in the film one account, which may be true, could be legend is that his last words war, and I do not speak English, I will do my best.
00:38:08.910 --> 00:38:12.870
Mitchell Lieber: draped in frustrate right into record.
00:38:15.030 --> 00:38:18.630
Mitchell Lieber: And, in a way that is what we are all continuing to do.
00:38:20.040 --> 00:38:23.190
Mitchell Lieber: As you explained Margaret masterminds.
00:38:24.390 --> 00:38:26.010
Mitchell Lieber: And we're writing and recording.
00:38:30.270 --> 00:38:32.850
Mitchell Lieber: let's go to the next clip.
00:38:43.260 --> 00:38:44.580
Mitchell Lieber: This is said in modern day.
00:38:45.660 --> 00:38:48.450
Mitchell Lieber: includes audio from survivors from earlier in the film.
00:39:03.150 --> 00:39:04.230
i'm trying to find.
00:39:06.330 --> 00:39:13.650
The stones from my family and there's so many of them I just wasn't able to identify them.
00:39:15.300 --> 00:39:16.500
00:39:18.270 --> 00:39:18.840
00:39:20.520 --> 00:39:22.650
My father and my Uncle Sam.
00:39:23.880 --> 00:39:25.620
About 60 to 70 people.
00:39:26.730 --> 00:39:27.270
00:39:37.080 --> 00:39:52.770
My mother's can everyone ready everyone who worked on, I lost the father I lost everybody I didn't know anybody not my brother my sister is worth to my mother, I will see you tomorrow for breakfast but Bush.
00:39:56.760 --> 00:39:58.320
my brother who the year old.
00:39:59.700 --> 00:40:01.320
my brother was nine years old.
00:40:02.370 --> 00:40:03.960
And a burger with 12 years old.
00:40:07.740 --> 00:40:09.630
Sport and stitched in my nomads.
00:40:11.220 --> 00:40:13.020
His condition is a glute.
00:40:14.940 --> 00:40:16.680
minus focus but flush Madsen.
00:40:18.030 --> 00:40:19.680
In the end in mind and blue.
00:40:23.520 --> 00:40:25.710
man was land and mentioned sufficient in.
00:40:27.660 --> 00:40:30.450
Then Whitman and then myself and often suffer what turn.
00:40:44.970 --> 00:40:50.310
Mitchell Lieber: Those are the words of aspiring writer any high school student who was Coco their family ruler.
00:40:52.350 --> 00:40:53.100
Mitchell Lieber: And so.
00:40:54.360 --> 00:41:01.020
Mitchell Lieber: Like so many children, as well as women and men, but like children in particular.
00:41:02.460 --> 00:41:06.810
Mitchell Lieber: Never have the opportunity to become are there to realize their dreams as an adult.
00:41:08.310 --> 00:41:17.970
Mitchell Lieber: There is a chain of remembrance that goes back to the Rica ghetto room below was a motivation for members of the regular resistance you stuck out weapons.
00:41:19.200 --> 00:41:22.920
Mitchell Lieber: In the documentary we hear a song composed and sung in the ghetto about room block.
00:41:24.000 --> 00:41:30.840
Mitchell Lieber: And, two years later, we hear another song remembering it and yearning for the end of the Holocaust.
00:41:33.180 --> 00:41:34.410
Mitchell Lieber: After the Holocaust.
00:41:36.120 --> 00:41:36.900
Mitchell Lieber: After the war.
00:41:38.610 --> 00:41:41.010
Mitchell Lieber: The Soviet Union occupied by fear again.
00:41:42.300 --> 00:41:53.190
Mitchell Lieber: And in 1960 servers commemoration at the site, including marketing the site, it was just a field and events they're.
00:41:55.440 --> 00:42:04.560
Mitchell Lieber: All evolve was there and was one of the Jewish activists in Riga and will tell us about the activities of.
00:42:05.820 --> 00:42:09.330
Mitchell Lieber: Marketing the graves and early memorials and commemorations le.
00:42:16.770 --> 00:42:18.570
Mitchell Lieber: Le I believe you are muted.
00:42:22.770 --> 00:42:42.630
Elie Valk: Yes, we have to speak and not only about the younger Jews doesn't have to work at this this site, but also about that and downs who started to look for exact places of shootings and.
00:42:44.400 --> 00:42:48.390
Elie Valk: Actually 1962 the first attempt.
00:42:49.440 --> 00:43:07.140
Elie Valk: were resolved use resulted, and in 1963 I remember exactly the date on April 1990 6030 it was a 20th anniversary of the revolt the Warsaw ghetto, so a group of.
00:43:09.720 --> 00:43:24.960
Elie Valk: youngsters, and I was among them, we came to room willa and also several elderly people elderly it says, for me, then way they looked elderly about the age of 50.
00:43:25.440 --> 00:43:47.790
Elie Valk: And the manager was will be taken, and they also were here and boom it's a clean and as someone who said sharp refresh right, so he was recording it, not on the paper, but was there a film camera and he was filming what's going on and.
00:43:49.200 --> 00:44:06.090
Elie Valk: To a young activists dog spreading and a female child they didn't know, then that booby is one of ours let's say and they attacked him and they took out the field from the camera not to have.
00:44:07.590 --> 00:44:16.980
Elie Valk: People who are actively Jewish metrics to be reportedly because they were afraid of KGB but notwithstanding this cage to be.
00:44:18.060 --> 00:44:21.060
Elie Valk: A problem or.
00:44:22.170 --> 00:44:45.240
Elie Valk: scared and it's the same year in 19 6020 the first mass gathering was conducted and this a late nowhere I don't exactly know that a date, but it was late November early December at the University of mass killings, so people came here and.
00:44:46.800 --> 00:44:54.930
Elie Valk: At that time, and a year later, there were some monuments, not to the monuments, but the memorial.
00:44:56.460 --> 00:45:03.600
Elie Valk: memorial play plates were directed here and in 1964 a monument was.
00:45:04.800 --> 00:45:17.310
Elie Valk: erected in was one of your monuments in Soviet Union when they are aware inscription in English was Jewish letters, and this was a long struggle to get this.
00:45:18.630 --> 00:45:27.480
Elie Valk: inscription allowed by the authorities, it doesn't say Jews were killed the quantities, it was written dicker bones from fascism.
00:45:27.930 --> 00:45:40.080
Elie Valk: And, together with the same description in Russian and the Latvian and then, as it should be in Soviet Union was a hammer, and the cycle sign there.
00:45:40.590 --> 00:45:56.280
Elie Valk: But anyway, for us it was a place where we can come and commemorate our victims, and this was 19 6070 and from then on this gathering was.
00:45:57.060 --> 00:46:15.090
Elie Valk: Going on every year, and every year, a young sons were preparing kind of a program and I should say that one of the activities that adults generation guess after my sister she was.
00:46:16.230 --> 00:46:26.520
Elie Valk: Conducting all this program and preparing the songs and rhymes and poems to be cited here, and I can.
00:46:27.660 --> 00:46:28.350
Elie Valk: recall.
00:46:29.760 --> 00:46:46.050
Elie Valk: That in 1970 after the unfortunate hijack attempt in learning so which brought to a lengthy trial and you may know that among those who tried to get to escape to.
00:46:47.130 --> 00:47:01.800
Elie Valk: to escape to easily regional from Soviet Union, where many lot to enjoy many Reagan Jews, so their searches conducted in Africa and several people arrested, so the atmosphere was very tense.
00:47:03.300 --> 00:47:17.790
Elie Valk: In in November 1970 and people anyway, even less than usually but still came to commemorate the rumble a massacre and.
00:47:19.770 --> 00:47:30.120
Elie Valk: In this very tense atmosphere, nobody started the program so usually every year the purple started with the same time, is because it should.
00:47:31.170 --> 00:47:35.970
Elie Valk: say a prayer to those who have been killed here so.
00:47:37.290 --> 00:47:51.210
Elie Valk: Another ritual, who should say that is at that time at that day he didn't come, he was afraid, probably, so I saw that somebody sing has to be done, and since I knew God is by heart.
00:47:52.290 --> 00:48:01.680
Elie Valk: Since age seven I lost my father, when I was seven so I said kaddish every year, so I get out and.
00:48:03.000 --> 00:48:09.090
Elie Valk: Start same condition, and this was a step which actually.
00:48:11.250 --> 00:48:35.700
Elie Valk: broke the silence and the program and went on as JESSICA my Skype landed but also speaking about this is collaboration, but one is to make a point that actually the dads people the victims they actually did a big a day.
00:48:37.800 --> 00:49:02.490
Elie Valk: Hello helped us launch young Jews in America to remember the foolishness and to a combined all our efforts for Jewish methods which one of the aspects was Zionism was a desire to go to Israel and different will set up as a place where we met every Sunday to come to work on.
00:49:03.900 --> 00:49:17.610
Elie Valk: Making the graves and the savings a roads there, so we brought some is that books there and exchanges some of that and information about Easter and.
00:49:19.110 --> 00:49:31.410
Elie Valk: We were young and not so careful like our parents and, for example, when we came when went to her owns a bus and the bus number was number 30.
00:49:31.800 --> 00:49:41.550
Elie Valk: And it was you in this song after booster chatting on the bus on number 30 we went on this bus to her Angola and back end was saying.
00:49:41.850 --> 00:50:07.320
Elie Valk: Zine his songs and songs inhibitor so when our parents here well did they were were scared that will be arrested with where you are crazy singing design is songs that but anyway, we went on, and actually most of those who active zero in 19 7071 when I left for Israel.
00:50:07.860 --> 00:50:09.480
Mitchell Lieber: including, of course, oh.
00:50:10.140 --> 00:50:10.380
00:50:12.480 --> 00:50:12.870
Elie Valk: Yes.
00:50:13.650 --> 00:50:16.500
Mitchell Lieber: Thank you yo yo could you talk for one minute about.
00:50:17.610 --> 00:50:20.220
Mitchell Lieber: commemorations at in Riga.
00:50:21.330 --> 00:50:22.260
Mitchell Lieber: In modern times.
00:50:22.740 --> 00:50:30.000
Ilya Lensky: Yes, so, whereas many changes came up to nine to nine T when Latvia restored and its independence.
00:50:31.020 --> 00:50:36.870
Ilya Lensky: Already, a couple of months after independence was are stored in September 1990.
00:50:37.890 --> 00:50:52.440
Ilya Lensky: left in Parliament passed a special declaration condemning anti semitism and Holocaust where they also spoke about the issues of collaboration and, of course, after nine to nine to gatherings in the room block where public.
00:50:53.640 --> 00:51:06.870
Ilya Lensky: So the most let's say scandalous elements of Soviet memorial were removed, for example, the stone where was inscribed that there were killed, political prisoners and Bo w's but the Jews were admitted.
00:51:08.760 --> 00:51:13.050
Ilya Lensky: And in 2002 finally than human morial was unveiled.
00:51:13.830 --> 00:51:33.690
Ilya Lensky: The one that you've seen in the clips with a menorah in the shape of a tree with its roots enlightened soil, but also the rock from 1964 was preserved to pay our homage to those who struggled during the Soviet times and if, in the 90s and 2000s.
00:51:34.800 --> 00:51:46.650
Ilya Lensky: gatherings and ruler continued on last Sunday of November as an informal event so in recent years, a usually politicians and.
00:51:47.760 --> 00:52:00.600
Ilya Lensky: hire people in the State, including President this year and Prime Minister and ministers are willing to attend and to be with the Jewish community in this moment of morning.
00:52:01.140 --> 00:52:11.100
Ilya Lensky: and also in 2016 every important tradition was started by Lolita thumb sauna director of janice lipkin memorial which commemorates.
00:52:11.640 --> 00:52:21.540
Ilya Lensky: The most famous life and rescuer with us during the Holocaust sushi and Group of Friends they started putting candles silently.
00:52:22.170 --> 00:52:32.730
Ilya Lensky: At the monument the freedom most sacred place in Latvia, the symbol of life is independence and freedom so they're putting candles to commemorate.
00:52:33.330 --> 00:52:44.580
Ilya Lensky: And this is a very warm event, attended by all kinds of people there are no speeches just anyone who wants can come and put a candle to commemorate someone.
00:52:45.210 --> 00:52:51.150
Ilya Lensky: who perished and ruler someone maybe his relative or just what he heard of.
00:52:51.810 --> 00:53:00.540
Ilya Lensky: Sometimes people can have children who have heard something that school or whatever, so it started with a new tradition, which became very, very prominent.
00:53:01.080 --> 00:53:13.830
Ilya Lensky: And, which I think brings new dimension it's a grassroots initiative that became a national important isn't with which many, many people associated themselves now as well.
00:53:15.480 --> 00:53:24.750
Mitchell Lieber: Thank you and thank you to the panel and most of all to you attending for continuing the chain of memory that began in December in the Reagan again.
00:53:25.470 --> 00:53:32.940
Mitchell Lieber: there's a lot to learn from these events and to remember and i'm like to turn it back over to our to we have a little bit of time left for Q amp a.
00:53:35.040 --> 00:53:50.940
Ari Goldstein: Thank you, Richard Mitch dahlia in La for this conversation, which could go on a lot longer, but this was an incredibly insightful window into what happened at rumbling both commemoration and an opportunity for learning let's start with a question for you, Richard.
00:53:51.030 --> 00:54:00.030
Elie Valk: When we started the questions I would like to make it to school remarks because it's very important for us, who.
00:54:01.260 --> 00:54:14.310
Elie Valk: Mark eight years old, the Holocaust in Latvia, its own the dates of we will a massacre, but we have to remember that 73,000 Jews were killed in love to know just 25,000 have.
00:54:14.910 --> 00:54:27.810
Elie Valk: A tombola so and then memorial Assembly which will have tomorrow especial PowerPoint presentation will be shown on 14 small communities, we carry.
00:54:28.140 --> 00:54:48.210
Elie Valk: They were taking care of those community, and no one, no one said right there is no relatives of those people in your liking smelting there and I go on there, and I know you're in small places so we'll speak tomorrow about those small communities also you have mentioned here a.
00:54:49.320 --> 00:55:10.260
Elie Valk: Freedom equals some book I said a rabbit ruler, so a going going with same of similar to know try to first read this book has been published in three languages and this year her son for the limitation some translated to Hebrew so now it's in Hebrew as well, bringing a.
00:55:12.240 --> 00:55:18.660
Elie Valk: tragedy of love to induce Andrew Miller, who is really young generation, thank you.
00:55:19.800 --> 00:55:21.120
Ari Goldstein: Thank you for sharing that ellie.
00:55:22.920 --> 00:55:26.670
Ari Goldstein: And we'll go, I think, just a couple minutes past the hour, so we can get a few questions and.
00:55:27.360 --> 00:55:39.720
Ari Goldstein: Richard, this is a two part question for you, what happened to victor's arise that Nazi commander of the massacre and an additional question that's related is how many of the perpetrators were punished after the war.
00:55:41.160 --> 00:55:48.150
Richards Plavnieks: So fantastic question and i'm sure the person asking it suspects, the answer is going to be very disappointed.
00:55:49.260 --> 00:56:01.260
Richards Plavnieks: yak on himself who orchestrated not only the Bob er and rubella but had a long and storied career and the Third Reich, was executed in 1946 by the Soviets by hanging.
00:56:02.520 --> 00:56:06.240
Richards Plavnieks: Victoria authorized, who led the Latvian auxiliary security police.
00:56:07.560 --> 00:56:28.080
Richards Plavnieks: slips slipped away at the end of the war and wasn't required until the mid 1970s, where he turned up in West Germany he was tried convicted of his participation at room Bola in 1979 and then was given a life sentence and died of natural causes in 1988.
00:56:29.340 --> 00:56:46.200
Richards Plavnieks: The authorized commando as a whole at the time of room Bola number to about 400 men but eventually grew to 1200 and of those 1200 men in the authorized commando, which is the most notorious Latvian Holocaust perpetrator unit.
00:56:47.220 --> 00:56:58.020
Richards Plavnieks: something approaching one third phase some kind of formal justice in a courtroom either in the Soviet Union or the United States or East or West Germany.
00:57:00.780 --> 00:57:12.270
Richards Plavnieks: Some other proportion of them didn't survive the war, but, as is the case sort of across the board, particularly with grassroots level Holocaust perpetrators.
00:57:13.530 --> 00:57:15.780
Richards Plavnieks: The majority of them were never punished.
00:57:17.670 --> 00:57:18.570
Ari Goldstein: Thank you richards.
00:57:19.890 --> 00:57:27.570
Ari Goldstein: to members of the audience asked whether there's a list of rumble of victims available somewhere online or list of residents of the ricoh ghetto.
00:57:28.980 --> 00:57:31.650
Mitchell Lieber: there's you know turn it over to you in one second.
00:57:32.700 --> 00:57:45.420
Mitchell Lieber: On the resource slide at the end there will be over soon for the web, the Jewish names project and that has compiled from numerous public database resources information about Jews before the war and.
00:57:46.470 --> 00:57:50.670
Mitchell Lieber: Then there's what's none of their fate and knock on their page it's just as ghetto.
00:57:52.050 --> 00:57:57.240
Mitchell Lieber: Of nothing's heard from them afterwards the assumption is usually what they were killed.
00:57:58.770 --> 00:57:59.520
Mitchell Lieber: yo yo can.
00:58:00.120 --> 00:58:11.070
Ilya Lensky: yeah so uh, so there is no list and actually there are new archives of Reagan ghetto surviving and no archives of other places of prison and in Latvia.
00:58:12.180 --> 00:58:15.990
Ilya Lensky: There is a database called names and fates.
00:58:18.090 --> 00:58:32.130
Ilya Lensky: Names dot l u.lv and then there is a document or a list compiled by tomatoes, it said, unfortunately she passed away several years ago she extracted names from the.
00:58:33.600 --> 00:58:36.180
Ilya Lensky: house registers so.
00:58:37.320 --> 00:58:50.700
Ilya Lensky: Her document lists several I think like 5000 people who were in the ghetto yeah so you can just Google house registers of Riga gap to and the PDF file will appear.
00:58:51.390 --> 00:59:09.960
Ilya Lensky: So uh there are no direct lists of victims and rubella you've seen on the memorial around names and graves So these are just some of the names about 1500 maximum which were the grave at the moment of creation of the Memorial so as them.
00:59:11.280 --> 00:59:16.410
Ilya Lensky: With a memory of the victims of the route relatives who have Paris there.
00:59:17.640 --> 00:59:25.140
Ari Goldstein: Thank you earlier and there's a follow up question that I think your best position to answer as well how large is lobbyist Jewish community today.
00:59:26.880 --> 00:59:29.400
Ilya Lensky: We asked them a seven and a half to 8000.
00:59:30.660 --> 00:59:35.700
Ari Goldstein: Thank you and let's take two two more questions, this one is.
00:59:35.700 --> 00:59:44.760
Mitchell Lieber: right away, I know richards had a hard stop at two o'clock so we can continue with questions but richards may have to leave us.
00:59:45.060 --> 00:59:57.570
Ari Goldstein: we're going to squeeze two more in richards we're very grateful that you joined us today and David asks a thoughtful and complex question, he says just Latvia deny their involvement in the Holocaust as Lithuania and other countries do, how would you.
00:59:57.570 --> 01:00:12.510
Ilya Lensky: guys long story short, last year, from nine to 930 recognizes the participation of Latvians in the Holocaust Latvia as the State did not exist, during the Holocaust, it was occupied by the Soviets in 1940 so.
01:00:13.980 --> 01:00:23.250
Ilya Lensky: we're speaking of involvement of Latvians of different ethnic backgrounds, and this is recognized and we iterated and the speeches of the politicians.
01:00:24.000 --> 01:00:26.490
Elie Valk: I have to just.
01:00:28.140 --> 01:00:36.720
Elie Valk: Quote is a speaker fluffy empowerment that you miss his mother nature, as well as a minister of foreign affairs, both of them.
01:00:37.260 --> 01:00:55.620
Elie Valk: Several times said, and speaking the atrocities which were done by Nazis and a quote unfortunately among those who helped them were also a members of our nation, but it's one sentence, which has been repeated several times.
01:00:57.090 --> 01:01:04.830
Ari Goldstein: Thank you Leah and ellie i'm going to put on on screen now the resource slide that Mitch mentioned and we'll send out these links tomorrow as well.
01:01:05.160 --> 01:01:13.170
Ari Goldstein: Mitch, I want to close with this question there's several audience Members who say when and how can we see rumbling ECHO So what should we expect with the film.
01:01:14.550 --> 01:01:30.870
Mitchell Lieber: And the film is wrapping up it's complete rough cut, which is three hours for TV if you go to the film's website and register for the email newsletter will keep you informed about progress and when it's completed.
01:01:32.400 --> 01:01:33.390
Mitchell Lieber: You know, we.
01:01:35.070 --> 01:01:44.010
Mitchell Lieber: Are early in 2022 we will begin refining the rough cut, which is a draft.
01:01:45.030 --> 01:01:51.660
Mitchell Lieber: into the final film and we hope to have it completed by this time next year.
01:01:53.460 --> 01:01:57.960
Ari Goldstein: Thank you Mitch, we wish you the best of luck with the completion of the film.
01:01:58.380 --> 01:01:58.740
Mitchell Lieber: Thank you.
01:01:58.920 --> 01:02:02.310
Ari Goldstein: And I just see a message from ilya.
01:02:03.480 --> 01:02:08.850
Ari Goldstein: For there's a couple questions about Berlin Vienna and stood guard Iliad you want to take that as our last question.
01:02:08.880 --> 01:02:19.080
Ilya Lensky: yeah yeah, so I think it's very important that when we speak off room blah we're mostly speaking Riga Jews, but also there were more than thousand Jews from Berlin.
01:02:19.410 --> 01:02:25.110
Ilya Lensky: Who were physically, the first victims were killed their own yeah comes order.
01:02:25.560 --> 01:02:36.870
Ilya Lensky: And then there were several other transports from Berlin and other places to Riga gap to so what what we already discussed and then for example unis Jews and Jews from Stuttgart.
01:02:37.620 --> 01:02:55.710
Ilya Lensky: who were in these literally these days early December 41 deported to Riga, who are in prison front half concentration camp, which is under researched and richards is part of the group researching the history of that camp, so there is a Boston based.
01:02:57.120 --> 01:03:06.540
Ilya Lensky: artist Professor account frosted who's working on creating a memorial there and that's something very important that also this part of how it goes history.
01:03:06.900 --> 01:03:17.400
Ilya Lensky: wouldn't be remembered Latvia also was a place deputation thousands of people from Western Europe and it's a whole huge story so.
01:03:18.390 --> 01:03:33.120
Ilya Lensky: There are several good books written, we can recommend probably on final solution in Riga, is the most comprehensive and recent description of the fate of these foreign Jews it's also available in English and scalable online.
01:03:35.550 --> 01:03:51.240
Ari Goldstein: Thank you Elliot and for your work at the Museum of Jews in Latvia to preserve and teach this history to Mitch, for your incredible film project rumbling ECHO, which we all await with great anticipation to Le for your good work in Israel richards in Florida.
01:03:52.860 --> 01:03:55.620
Ari Goldstein: This is not easy history but it's important history.
01:03:56.730 --> 01:04:09.090
Ari Goldstein: At years ago this week we commemorate the 25,000 more twos who lost their lives in Riga and the rumble the forest, we hope, all of you, joining us today have learned something that you'll take out with you into the world.
01:04:09.630 --> 01:04:22.620
Ari Goldstein: Stay posted tomorrow for an email from the museum with a recording of today's discussion and some of the specific resources and links that were mentioned, we hope everyone stays safe and healthy take care.
01:04:22.740 --> 01:04:31.050
Elie Valk: Thanks to each and to everyone who a UN for organizing this very important.
01:04:33.630 --> 01:04:34.350
Ari Goldstein: Take care everyone.
Explore the Art of Boris Lurie
Boris Lurie, the artist at the center of the Museum’s exhibition Boris Lurie: Nothing To Do But To Try, grew up in Riga. When Lurie was 16 years old, the Nazis invaded Latvia and he and his family were forcibly evacuated to a ghetto. Later that year, his mother, grandmother, sister, and girlfriend were murdered at Rumbula, along with approximately 25,000 other Jews. Watch a lecture by Museum curator Sara Softness offering a closer look at Lurie’s paintings.
Learn About the Rumbula Massacre and Its Context
The forthcoming film Rumbula’s Echo will tell the story of the massacre and how it changed a family, a country, and our world today. Explore the film and sign up for updates on the Rumbula’s Echo website. For a firsthand survivor account of the massacre, read Frida Michelson’s 1982 memoir I Survived Rumbuli. For a comprehensive overview of the Holocaust in Latvia, read Andrei Angrick and Peter Klein’s book The ‘Final Solution’ in Riga: Exploitation and Annihilation, 1941-1944. For an analysis of the aftermath of the Holocaust in Latvia, read Richards Plavnieks’ 2018 study Nazi Collaborators on Trial during the Cold War: Viktors Arājs and the Latvian Auxiliary Security Police.
Research Jewish History in Latvia
The Latvia Jewish Names Project has spent years collecting records of Jews killed in Latvia during the Holocaust. Explore the Project here. The Museum’s genealogy platform, JewishGen, also has an extensive research division focused on Latvia and Estonia. Explore JewishGen’s resources here. For more resources, consult the Jewish Museum in Latvia and the Association of Latvian and Estonian Jews in Israel.
Boris Lurie: Nothing To Do But To Try is made possible by The Knapp Family Foundation, Patricia Askwith Kenner & Family, and other generous donors. Special thanks to the Boris Lurie Art Foundation for its commitment to this presentation.
We would like to express our appreciation to the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference) for supporting this public program. Through recovering the assets of the victims of the Holocaust, the Claims Conference enables organizations around the world to provide education about the Shoah and to preserve the memory of those who perished.