The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB) has declassified and published on its website the interrogation records of Latvian Nazi collaborators.
These revelations come as the actions of the Banderites in Ukraine are largely glossed over and as those of the Latvian collaborators are also greatly underestimated.
These documents reveal that, contrary to what is generally believed, in Latvia the mass murder of Jews and Roma by the Nazi regime began in July 1941, well ahead of the Wansee conference of 20 January 1942. They also indicate that the massacres of Jews and political opponents reached far greater proportions than is generally acknowledged. Finally, they attest that the Nazi leaders themselves were shocked by the cruelty of the Latvian volunteers.
In December 1941, the 30,000 Jews in the Riga ghetto were all exterminated. The Latvian Sonderkommando Arājs unit guarding the Salaspils concentration camp executed 30,000 prisoners. It set up a “blood factory” in which prisoners, mainly children, were bled every two days until they died from exhaustion for the needs of the Wehrmacht. 46,000 civilians, including 12,000 Jews, were brought to Latvia from Austria, Germany and Czechoslovakia to be killed in Biķernieki Forest. 105,000 people out of 120,000 were murdered by Latvians in the Minsk ghetto (now Belarus). The Red Army discovered mass graves in Latvia containing more than 300,000 bodies.
The Latvian parliament (Saeimā) has just passed a law ordering the dismantling of all monuments honoring the Red Army no later than 15 November 2022. The Latvian government continues to pay tribute to Nazi collaborators in Latvia and Ukraine.