Scrapbookpages Blog

April 18, 2011

the killing of the Jews in Lithuania

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 9:38 am

Lithuanian man standing over the bodies of dead Jews

The famous photo above is from some film footage taken by the Germans in Lithuania in 1941.  I saw the film years ago in a TV documentary.

Here is the back story: The Soviet Union invaded Lithuania in 1940 and annexed the country with the approval of Germany. On June 22, 1941, the Germans broke their non-aggression pact with the Russians and invaded the Soviet Union, but before getting into Russia, they first invaded Lithuania, which had a large ethnic German population and a small number of Jews.  Before the Germans arrived, some of the Lithuanians started killing the Jews of their own volition.

A few years ago, I visited the mansion where the Wannsee Conference was held on January 20, 1942. In Section 5 of the Wannsee museum, which is entitled “Mass Executions,” I read about the shooting of the Jews by the Einsatzgruppen.  In the last 10 years or so, the subject of the Einsatzgruppen has become extremely popular and all the little school kids know the meaning of the term so I won’t take the time to explain it.

All of the exhibits in the Wannsee museum were in German only when I visited, but I bought a book that had English translations so that I could read everything. There was a telex message from Reinhard Heydrich on display, dated June 29, 1941 and addressed to  the four Einsatzgruppen leaders.

Here is the English translation of Heydrich’s telex message:

Efforts to carry out purges on the part of anti-Communist or anti-Jewish groups in the territories to be newly occupied must not be hampered. On the contrary, they are to be provoked although without leaving traces – if necessary intensified and carefully guided in the right direction. This must be done in such a way that these local ‘self defense groups’ will not be able to claim later on that they were given instructions or political assurances.

Lithuanians killing Jews as German soldiers watch

The Lithuanians had already started killing the Jews before the Germans got there, and when the Germans arrived, they didn’t stop the killing because of the orders that Heydrich had given to the Einsatzgruppen leaders.  Note the German soldiers in the background of the photo above.


  1. […] boy’s ordeal.  I previously blogged about the Jews being killed by Lithuanians in Lithuania here.  So I was very suspicious of the story of the Nazis killing Jews in Belarusia.  Were all of the […]

    Pingback by Belarusians killed Jews in WWII and blamed it on the Nazis « Scrapbookpages Blog — September 28, 2012 @ 2:24 pm

  2. Searching for the “telex message” from Reinhard Heydrich, all I found was your Scrapbook Pages report and “paolosilv”‘s several blogs. He used to comment here, as I’m sure your remember, and his simple statement repeated at all his blogs comes directly from you, and what you wrote at Scrapbook Pages. So you, furtherglory, are the source of the telex message exhibited at the Wannsee Museum in Berlin. No one else seems interested in it.

    This “museum” at Wannsee is a travesty based on nothing but forged documents and fabricated history. Where is your assurance that this document is authentic? You don’t even question it. I’m sure you know very well that you can’t take statements at these museums at face value. Every document has to be authenticated by competent, neutral parties.

    Comment by Skeptic — February 12, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

  3. You saw the film years ago in a TV documentary, but you think it is authentic? Based on what? Where is it available now? If it is so damning to the Germans, it must be available.

    The Lithuanians had been mis-ruled by the communist Jews; this was not innocent Jews they were killing. But I would also like to see and read more about that telex message from Heyrich. Maybe you can write something about that in a more critical vein.

    Comment by Skeptic — February 12, 2012 @ 3:32 pm

  4. Both are. You cannot make heads or tails from those “photos.”

    Comment by El Generalissimo — April 18, 2011 @ 1:27 pm

    • These photos are still shots from a film made by the Germans as the massacre was happening. I think the film is authentic.

      Comment by furtherglory — April 22, 2011 @ 11:03 am

  5. That’s a fake photo.

    Comment by El Generalissimo — April 18, 2011 @ 1:26 pm

  6. Interesting theme. And very true. The Baltic people really hated their “russian” masters.

    But the ”chosen ones” always have been, they are today and they will always be The Masters Of Deception!
    So how true is the content in this “Heydrich’s telex message” everyone is obliged to wonder….

    I have read and heard so much about these “Einsatzgruppen” and what they are supposed to have done over the years, of which most of it only is a mix of stories, lies and fantasies — as most of what “is official” about WW2….
    For a long time, The Katyn Massacre was also done by the “Einsatzgruppen”…. Only one example of many many many lies told by “the chosen story tellers”.

    So what about this “Heydrich telex” — do you think/mean it is genuine?

    Comment by Königsberg — April 18, 2011 @ 12:48 pm

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