The Holocaust in Norway

In 1941–1942[1] during the German occupation of Norway, there were at least 2,173 Jews in Norway. At least 775 of them were arrested, detained and/or deported. More than half of the Norwegians who died in camps in Germany were Jews.[2] 742 Jews were murdered in the camps and 23 Jews died as a result of extrajudicial execution, murder and suicide during the war, bringing the total of Jewish Norwegian dead to at least 765 Jews, comprising 230 complete households.[3] "Nearly two-thirds of the Jews in Norway fled from Norway".[4] Of these, around 900 Jews were smuggled out of the country by the Norwegian resistance movement, mostly to Sweden but some also to the United Kingdom).[5] Between 28 and 34 of those deported survived[6] their continued imprisonment in camps (following their deportation)—and around 25 (of these) returned to Norway after the war.[5]

Background

Hvem er Hvem i Jødeverden, 3. udgave
Who's Who in the Jewish World, an attache to an antisemitic periodical listing Jews and presumed Jews in Norway. First edition printed in 1925.

The Jewish community in Norway was established in the late 19th century, after a clause in the Norwegian constitution of 1814 that banned Jews from entering Norway was repealed in 1851. The population grew slowly until the early 20th century, when pogroms in Russia and the Baltic states increased the number of immigrants. Another immigration increase came in the 1930s, as Jews fled Nazi persecution in Germany and areas under German control. See also Nansenhjelpen.

By 1942, there were 2,173 Jews in Norway. Of these, it is estimated that 1,643 were Norwegian citizens, 240 were foreign citizens, and 290 were stateless.[1]

Much of the prejudice against Jews commonly found in Europe was also evident in Norway in the late 19th and early 20th century, and Nasjonal Samling (NS), the Nazi party in Norway, made antisemitism part of its political platform in the 1930s. Halldis Neegaard Østbye became the de facto spokeswoman for increasingly virulent propaganda against Jews, summarized in her 1938 book Jødeproblemet og dets løsning (The Jewish Problem and its Solution). NS had also started gathering information about Jewish Norwegians before the war started, and antisemitic op-ed articles were occasionally published in the mainstream press.

Following the German invasion and occupation, of Norway, and after the legitimate Norwegian government had left the country, German occupying authorities under the leadership of Reichskommissar Josef Terboven, put Norwegian civilian authorities under his control. This included various branches of Norwegian police, including the district sheriffs (Lensmannsetaten), criminal police, and order police. Nazi police branches, including the SD and Gestapo, also became part of a network that served as tools for increasingly oppressive policies toward the Norwegian populace.[7]

Preparations

WannseeList
(Incorrect) estimate of the number of Jews presented at the Wannsee Conference

As a deliberate strategy, Terboven's regime sought to use Norwegian, rather than German, officials to subjugate the Norwegian population. Although German police and paramilitary forces reported through the RSHA chain of command, and Norwegian police formally into the newly formed Department of Police, the actual practice was that Norwegian police officials took direction from the German RSHA.

Although several Jewish Norwegians had already been arrested and deported as political prisoners in the early months of the occupation, the first measure targeting all Jews was an order from the German foreign ministry made through Terboven that on 10 May 1941 the police of Oslo were to confiscate radios from all Jews in the city. Within days local sheriffs throughout the entire country received the same orders.

To identify Jewish Norwegians, the authorities relied on information from the police and telegraph service, whilst the synagogues in Oslo and Trondheim were ordered to produce full rosters of their members, including their names, date of birth, profession, and address. Jewish burial societies and youth groups were likewise ordered to produce their lists.

In August, the synagogues were also ordered to produce lists of Jewish individuals who were not members. The resulting lists were cross-referenced with information Nasjonal Samling had compiled previously and information from the Norwegian Central Bureau of statistics. In the end, occupying authorities in Norway had a more complete list of Jewish residents in Norway than most other countries under Nazi rule.[7][8][9][10]

On the basis of the lists compiled in the spring, the Justice Department and county governors started in the fall to register all Jewish property, including commercial holdings. A complete inventory was transmitted to the police department in December 1941, and this also included individuals who were suspected of having a Jewish background.

Antisemitic graffiti in Oslo, 1941
Anti-Semite graffiti on shop windows in Oslo in 1941. (The location is at the junction of present-day Henrik Ibsen's Street and Crown Prince Street.)

On 20 December, the Norwegian Department of Police ordered 700 stamps with a 2 cm tall "J" for use by authorities to stamp the identification cards of Jewish individuals in Norway. These were put into use on 10 January 1942, when advertisements in the mainstream press ordered all Norwegian Jews to immediately present themselves at the local police stations to have their identification papers stamped. They were also ordered to complete an extensive form. For purposes of this registration, a Jew was identified as anyone who had at least three "full-Jewish" grandparents; anyone who had two "full-Jewish" grandparents and was married to a Jew; or was a member of a Jewish congregation. This registration showed that about 1,400 Jewish adults lived in Norway.

The Norwegian State Railways "aided without protest in the deportation", according to author Halvor Hegtun.[11]

Confiscation and arrests

Memorial plaque at Stabekk skole over murdered Jewish children
Memorial plaque at Stabekk elementary school over three children who were taken out of their classrooms and sent to Auschwitz

Both the German and Norwegian police officials intensified efforts to target the Jewish population during the course of 1941 and the Falstad concentration camp was established near Levanger, north of Trondheim. Jewish individuals, particularly those who were stateless, were briefly detained in connection with Operation Barbarossa. The first Jewish Norwegian to be deported was Benjamin Bild, a labor union activist and mechanic accused of sabotage, who died in Gross Rosen.[12] Moritz Rabinowitz, was probably the first to be arrested in March, 1941 for agitating against Nazi antisemitism in the Haugesund press. He was sent to Sachsenhausen concentration camp where he was beaten to death on 27 December 1942.[13]

German troops occupied and vandalized the Trondheim Synagogue on 21 April 1941. The Torah scrolls had been secured in the early days of the war, and before long the Methodist church in Trondheim had provided temporary facilities for Jewish religious services. Several Jewish residents of Trondheim were arrested and detained at Falstad. The first such prisoner was Efraim Koritzinsky, a medical doctor and head of Trondheim hospital.[14] Several others followed; altogether eight of these were shot in the woods outside of the camp that became the infamous site of extrajudicial executions in Norway[15] On 24 February,1942, all remaining Jewish property in Trondheim was seized by Nazi authorities.[16]

By the fall of 1942, about 150 Jews from Norway had fled the country. The Jewish population in Norway had experienced some mistreatment specifically targeted at them, but the prevailing sense was that their lot was the same as all other Norwegians.

As the brutality of the Terboven regime came to light through the atrocities at Telavåg, Martial law in Trondheim in 1942, etc., persecution against Jews in particular became more pronounced.

After numerous cases of harassment and violence against individuals, orders were issued to Norwegian police authorities on 24 and 25 October 1942, to arrest all Jewish men over the age of 15 and confiscate all their property. On 26 October, several Norwegian police branches and 20 soldiers of Germanic-SS rounded up and arrested Jewish men, often leaving their wives and children on the street. These prisoners were held primarily at Berg concentration camp in Southern Norway and Falstad concentration camp in central parts of the country; some were held in local jails, while Jewish women were ordered to report in person to their local sheriffs every day.

On the morning of 26 November, German soldiers and more than 300 Norwegian officials (belonging to Statspolitiet, Kriminalpolitiet, Hirden and Germanske SS-Norge)[17] were deployed to arrest and detain Jewish women and children. These were sent by cars and train to the pier in Oslo where a cargo ship, the SS Donau was waiting to transport them to Stettin, and from there to Auschwitz.[18]

By 27 November, all Jews in Norway (except one[19]) were either deported and murdered, imprisoned, had fled to Sweden, or were in hiding in Norway.

Around 70[20] Jews remained imprisoned at Berg concentration camp until the end of the war, because they were married to "Aryans".[21]

Deportation and mass murder

  • The first group deportation of Jews from Norway was on 19 November 1942 when the ship Monte Rosa left Oslo with 223 prisoners, of which 21 were Jewish.
  • The original plan was to ship all remaining Jews in Norway in one cargo ship, the SS Donau, on 26 November 1942, but only 532[17] prisoners boarded the SS Donau that day. Coincidentally with the departure of the SS Donau the same day, the MS Monte Rosa carried 26 Jews from Oslo. The Donau landed in Stettin on 30 November. The prisoners boarded cargo trains at Breslauer Bahnhof, 60 to a car and departed Stettin at 5:12 pm. The train journey to Auschwitz took 28 hours. All the prisoners arrived alive at the camp, and there they were sorted into two lines. 186 were sent to slave labor in the Birkenau subcamp, the rest - 345 - were killed (within hours) in Auschwitz's gas chambers.[18]
  • The remaining Jewish prisoners that had been en route to Oslo on 26 November for the departure of the Donau were delayed, possibly as a result of delaying tactics by the Red Cross and sympathetic railroad workers. These were imprisoned under harsh conditions at Bredtveit concentration camp in Oslo to await a later transport.
  • On 24 February 1943, the Bredtveit prisoners, along with 25 from Grini, boarded the Gotenland in Oslo, altogether 158. The ship departed the following day, also landing in Stettin, where they arrived on 27 February. They traveled to Auschwitz via Berlin, where they stayed overnight at the Levetzowstrasse Synagogue. They arrived at Auschwitz on the night between 2 March and 3 March. Of the 158 who arrived from Norway, only 26 or 28 survived the first day, being sent to the Monowitz subcamp of Auschwitz.[18]
  • Vidkun Quisling attempted to include the Sámi in the Holocaust, as he believed them to be inferior to the Norwegian race[22][23]. An unknown number of Sámi were killed alongside Norwegian Jews.

There were smaller and individual deportations after the Gotenland's voyage. A smaller number of Jewish prisoners remained in camps in Norway during the war, primarily those who were married to non-Jewish Norwegians. These were subject to mistreatment and neglect. In the camp in Grini, for example, the group that was harshest treated consisted of violent criminals and Jews.[18]

Altogether, about 767 Jews from Norway were deported and sent to concentration camps under German control, primarily Auschwitz. 26 of these survived the ordeal.[24] In addition to the 741 murdered in the camps, 23 died as a result of extrajudicial execution, murder, and suicide during the war; bringing the total of Jewish Norwegian dead to at least 764, comprising 230 complete households.

The death toll among Jews from Norway constituted about 0.013% of the total death toll of European Jews in the Holocaust.

Escape to Sweden

Backpack from WWII at border bw Sweden and Norway
Backpack used by Jewish refugees, placed at remnants of gate at a border crossing to Sweden

Early during the occupation, there was traffic between neutral countries, primarily Sweden over land; and the United Kingdom, by sea. Even as the occupying authorities tried to limit such traffic, the underground railroad became more organized. Swedish authorities were at first only willing to accept political refugees and did not count Jews among them. Several Jewish refugees were turned away at the border, and a few were subsequently deported.

The North Sea route would become increasingly challenging as German forces increased their naval presence along the Norwegian coast, limiting the sea route to special operations missions against German military targets. The land routes to Sweden became the main conduit for people and materials that either needed to get out of Norway for their safety, or into Norway for clandestine missions.

There were a few private routes across the border, but most were organized through three resistance groups: Milorg ("military organization"), Sivorg ("civilian organization") and Komorg, the communist resistance group. These routes were carefully guarded, in large part through a network of secret cells. Some efforts to infiltrate them, especially through the Rinnan gang (Sonderabteilung Lola) succeeded, but such holes were quickly plugged.

Recommendations for (or warnings to) escape

Examples of Jews being recommended to escape include outgoing communication by anti-Nazi Germans in Norway: Theodor Steltzer warned Wolfgang Geldmacher—married to Randi Eckhoff, sister of member of the Resistance "Rolf Eckhoff. From them, warnings were passed on to Lise Børsum, Amalie Christie, Robert Riefling, Ole Jacob Malm and others".[25]

Report of disappearance—filed in Norway—regarding two Jews on the first transport from Prague to Poland

On 16 December 1941, "secretary of Nansen International Office for Refugees received a letter from the stateless Jews Nora Lustig, Fritz Lusting and Leo Eitinger. They were in Norway, and wrote that Czech Jews that they knew, had been deported to an unknown place in Poland. They asked Filseth, to report missing (through Red Cross), two Jews, shipped with the first transport from Prague to Poland".[25]

After the arrest of Jewish men (on 26 October 1942)

The arrest and detention of Jewish men on 26 October 1942 changed that premise, but at that point many were afraid of reprisals against the imprisoned men if they left. Some Norwegian Nazis and German officials advised Jews to leave the country as quickly as possible.

On the evening of 25 November, resistance people got a few hours' notice before the scheduled arrests and deportation of all Jews in Norway. Many did their best to notify the remaining Jews who were not already detained, usually by making brief phone calls or short appearances on people's doorsteps. This was more successful in Oslo than other areas. Those who were warned only had a few hours to go into hiding and days to find their way out of the country.

The Norwegian resistance movement had not planned for the contingency that hundreds of individuals had to go underground in one night, and it was left to individuals to improvise shelter out of sight of the arresting authorities. Many were moved several times in just as many days.

Most of the refugees were moved in small groups across the border, typically with the help of taxis or trucks, railroads to areas near the border, and then by foot, car, bicycle, or on skis across the border. It was a particularly cold winter, and the crossing involved considerable hardship and uncertainty. Those who had the means, paid their non-Jewish helpers for their trouble.

The passage was complicated by the vigilance of police who were committed to capturing such refugees, and Terboven imposed the death penalty for anyone caught aiding Jewish refugees. Only individuals who by application were granted "border zone permits" were allowed within easy traveling distance to the border with Sweden. Trains were subject to regular search and inspection, and there were continuous patrols of the area. A failed crossing would have dire consequences for anyone caught, as indeed it turned out for a few.

Still, at least 900 Jewish refugees made their way across the border to Sweden. They usually went through a transit center in Kjesäter in Vingåker, and then found temporary homes throughout Sweden, but mostly in certain towns where Norwegians gathered, such as Uppsala.

Criticism of the Norwegian government in exile, and of Milorg

Some have said that the Norwegian government in exile should have warned the Jews (and told them to flee), since Trygve Lie already in June 1942 knew about what was happening to Jews in continental Europe, while others[25] say that "What could one expect from Lie while the British and the Americans did not believe the messages from Poland? Also in Norway there had been difficulty in believing that gruesomness had taken place".

Some have said that Milorg did too little for the Jews, while others[26] say that "The great rescue operation Carl Fredriksens Transport was a result of orders from a tilbaketrukket leader of Milorg, Ole Berg, and later financed by Sivorg".

Criminal culpability and moral responsibility

Criminal prosecution

Bundesarchiv Bild 121-1386, Skeikampen, deutsche Offiziere, Terboven
Terboven, Rediess, and other SS officers on an excursion to Skeikampen in April, 1942

Although both the Norwegian Nazi party Nasjonal Samling and the German Nazi establishment had a political platform that called for persecution and ultimately the genocide of European Jewry, the arrest and deportation of Jews in Norway into the hands of the camp officials turned on the actions of several specific individuals and groups.

The ongoing rivalry between Reichskommissar Josef Terboven and Ministerpresident Vidkun Quisling may have played a role, as both were likely presented with the directives from the Wannsee Conference in January 1942. The German policy was to use Norwegian police as a front for the Norwegian implementation of the conference plans, orders for which were issued along two chains of command: from Adolf Eichmann through the RSHA and Heinrich Fehlis to Hellmuth Reinhard, the Gestapo chief in Norway; and from Quisling through the "minister of justice" Sverre Riisnæs and "minister of police" Jonas Lie through to Karl Marthinsen, the head of the Norwegian state police.

Documentation from the period suggests that the Nazi authorities, and especially the Quisling administration, were loath to initiate actions that might cause widespread opposition among the Norwegian population. Quisling had tried and failed to take over the teachers' unions, the clergy of the State of Norway, athletics, and the arts. Eichmann had de-prioritized the extermination of Jews in Norway, as the number was low and even Nasjonal Samling had claimed that the "Jewish problem" in Norway was minor. Confiscation of Jewish property, the arrest of Jewish men, constant harassment and individual murder was – until late November, 1942 – part of Terboven's approach of terrorizing the Norwegian population into submission.

The evidence suggests that Hellmuth Reinhard took the initiative to put an end to all Jews in Norway. This may have been motivated by his own ambition, and it's possible he was encouraged by the lack of outrage over the initial measures targeting Jews.

According to the trial against him in Baden-Baden in 1964, Reinhard arranged for the SS Donau to set aside capacity for prisoner transport on 26 November and ordered Karl Marthinsen to mobilize the necessary Norwegian forces to effect the transit from Norway. In a curious sidenote to all this, he also sent along a typewriter on the Donau to properly register all prisoners, and was insistent that it be returned to him on Donau's return voyage – which it was.

A local, Norwegian, police chief in Oslo named Knut Rød provided on-the-ground command of Norwegian police officers for arresting women and children and transporting them as well as the men who had already been detained to the Oslo harbor and putting them in the hands of the German SS troops.

Eichmann was not notified of the transport until the Donau had left the harbor, bound for Stettin. Nevertheless, he was able to arrange for box cars to be present for transport to Auschwitz.

Of those involved:

  • Terboven committed suicide before being captured when the war ended; Quisling was convicted for treason and executed. Jonas Lie died, apparently of a heart attack before his capture. Sverre Riisnæs either feigned insanity or went insane and was put in protective custody. Marthinsen was assassinated by the Norwegian resistance in February 1945. Heinrich Fehlis committed suicide by first taking poison and then shooting himself in May 1945.

In the end, only two of the principals were put on trial:

  • Hellmuth Reinhard left Norway in January 1945 without any clues to his whereabouts. He was presumed dead and his wife was issued a death certificate so she could remarry. But it turned out he had changed his name to his birth name of Hellmuth Patzschke and had actually remarried his "widow," settling down as a publisher in Baden-Baden. His real identity was discovered in 1964, and he was put on trial. In spite of overwhelming evidence about his culpability for the deportation of Jews from Norway and his complicity in their deaths, he was acquitted because statute of limitations had expired. He was convicted and sentenced to five years for his participation in Operation Blumenpflücken.
  • Knut Rød was put on trial in 1948, acquitted of all charges, and managed to get reinstated as a police officer and retired in 1965. Rød's acquittal remains controversial this day and has been characterized as "the strangest criminal trial [in the legal proceedings after World War II]".[27][28]
  • Another controversial trial was that held against members of the resistance Peder Pedersen and Håkon Løvestad, who confessed to killing an elderly Jewish couple and stealing their money. The jury found that the killing was justified, but convicted the two of embezzlement. This also became a controversial issue known as the Feldmann case.

The moral culpability among Norwegian police officers and Norwegian informants is a matter of continuing research and debate.

Although the persecution and murder of Jews was raised as a factor in several trials, including that against Quisling, legal scholars agree that in no case was it a decisive or even weighty factor in the conviction or sentencing of these people.

Moral responsibility

Holocaust memorial in Trondheim
Holocaust memorial at the Jewish cemetery at Lademoen in Trondheim, Norway

Beyond the criminal actions of individuals in Norway that led to the deportation and murder of Jews from Norway, and indeed also of non-Jews who were persecuted on political, religious or other pretexts, there has been considerable public debate in Norway about the public morals that allowed these crimes to take place and did not prevent them from happening.

Comparison between Denmark and Norway

The situation of the Jews in Denmark was very different from Norway. Far fewer Danish Jews were arrested and deported, and those who were deported were sent to Theresienstadt, rather than Auschwitz, where a relatively large percentage survived.

Several factors have been cited for these differences [29]

  • In Denmark, the German diplomat Georg Ferdinand Duckwitz leaked the plans for arrest and deportation to Hans Hedtoft several days before the plan was to be put in motion. There was no such humanitarian among German officials in Norway.
  • The terms of occupation in Denmark gave Danish politicians greater influence over internal affairs in Denmark, and in particular command authority over Danish police forces. Consequently, German occupying authorities had to rely on German police and military to perform arrests. Where Danish police participated, it was to rescue Jews from Germans. Since the Norwegians resisted the Germans more actively, the country never enjoyed the same civil autonomy as did the Danes during the occupation.
  • Danish popular opinion was more actively opposed to the Nazi occupation and was more emboldened to take care of its Jewish citizens. Non-Jewish Danes were known to take to the streets to find Jews who needed shelter, and to search the forests for Jews who had hidden there to help them.
  • The arrest of Norwegian Jews happened about one year before the arrests in Denmark, and also before the Soviet victory at Stalingrad, which changed nearby Sweden's stand from being supportive of the Germans to lean towards the Allies. As there was considerable contact between the resistance in Denmark and Norway through neutral Sweden it means that the Danes knew what fate the Danish Jews were destined for. That Sweden had changed to lean towards the Allies also meant that it was open for Jewish refugees, which had not been the case before and early in the war.

Issues of moral responsibility

The exiled Norwegian government became part of the Allies upon the invasion on 9 April 1940. Though the most significant contribution of the Allied war effort was through the merchant marine fleet known as Nortraship, a number of Norwegian military forces were established and became part of the Norwegian Armed Forces in exile. Consequently, the Norwegian government was regularly briefed on Allied intelligence relating to atrocities committed by German forces in Eastern Europe and in occupied Netherlands, France, etc.

In addition, the Norwegian government also received regular intelligence from the Norwegian home front, including accounts from returning Norwegian Germanic-SS soldiers, who had firsthand accounts of massacres of Jews in Poland, the Ukraine, etc.[30]

Indeed, both underground resistance newspapers in Norway and the Norwegian press abroad published news about "wholesale murders" of Jews in the late summer and fall of 1942.[31] There is, however, little evidence that either the Norwegian home front or Norwegian government expected that the Jews in Norway would be a target for the genocide that was unfolding on the European continent. On 1 December 1942, the Norwegian foreign minister, Trygve Lie sent a letter to the British section of the World Jewish Congress where he asserted that:

...it has never been found necessary for the Norwegian Government to appeal to the people of Norway to assist and to protect other individuals of classes in Norway, who have been selected for persecution by the German aggressors, and I feel convinced that such an appeal is not needed in order to urge the population to fulfill their human duty towards the Jews of Norway.

— Abrahamsen 1991, p. 10.

Although the Norwegian resistance by the fall of 1942 had a sophisticated network for transmitting and propagating urgent news among the population that led to very effective passive resistance efforts, e.g., in keeping the teachers' union, athletics, physicians, etc., out of Nazi control,[32] no such notifications were issued to save Jews.[33]

The Protestant religious establishment in Norway did, however, make their opposition known: in a letter to Vidkun Quisling dated 10 November 1942, read out in Norwegian churches on two consecutive Sundays, bishops of the Church of Norway, the administration of the theological seminaries, the leaders of several leading religious organizations, and the leaders of non-Lutheran Protestant organizations protesting actions against the Jews, calling on Quisling "in the name of Jesus Christ" to "stop the persecution of Jews and stop the bigotry that through the press is disseminated throughout our land."[34]

The discrimination, persecution, and ultimately deportation of Jews was enabled by the cooperation of Norwegian agencies that were not entirely co-opted by Nasjonal Samling or the German occupying powers. In addition to the police and local sheriffs who implemented the directives of Statspolitiet, the taxis aided in transporting Jewish prisoners to their point of deportation and even sued the Norwegian government after the war for wages owed to them for such services.[35]

Jews in Norway had been singled out for persecution also before 26 October 1942. They were the first to have radios confiscated, were forced to register and have identification papers imprinted, and were banned from certain professions. However, it was not widely considered that this would extend to deportation and murder. It wasn't until the night of 26 November that the resistance movement was mobilized to rescue Jews from deportation. It took time for the network to be fully engaged, and until then Jewish refugees had to improvise on their own, and rely on acquaintances to avoid capture. Within a few weeks, however, the Norwegian home front organizations (including Milorg and Sivorg) had developed the means to move relatively large numbers of refugees out of Norway and also financed these escapes when needed.

The State Railways' role

Bjørn Westlie says that the "Norwegian State Railways transported Jews to the outward shipping from the Oslo harbor (...) the NSB employees did not know what fate awaited the Jews. Naturally they understood that the Jews would be shipped out of the country by force, because the train went to Oslo harbor".[36] Furthermore, Westlie points to "dilemmas [that] NSB's employees found themselves in when the NSB leadership cooperated with the Germans".[36]

Later Westlie said about the extermination of Norwegian Jews: "what else than co-responsible was NSB ? For me, NSB's use of POWs and this deportation of Jews must be viewed as one: namely, that NSB thereby became an agency that participated in Hitler's violence against these two groups, who were the nazism's main enemies. The fact that the pertinent NSB leaders received awards after the war, confirms NSB's and others' desire to conceal this".[36]

There was no investigation of the agencies [or NSB] after the war.[37] However, the former chief Vik was not to be prosecuted if he "did not again work for NSB".[38]

Post-war reactions

The post-war Norwegian government's refusal to finance the return of deported Jewish Norwegians

"When the White Buses travelled down [southward from Scandinavia] to fetch prisoners who had survived, Jews were not permitted on board because they were no longer considered Norwegian citizens, and the government after 8 May [1945] refused to finance their transportation home.", according to historian Kjersti Dybvig.[39]

Skarpnes commission

On 27 May 1995, Bjørn Westlie published an article in the daily, Dagens Næringsliv, that highlighted the uncompensated financial loss incurred by the Norwegian Jewish community as a result of Nazi persecution during the war. This brought to public attention the fact that much if not most of the assets confiscated from Jewish owners during the war had been inadequately restored to them and their descendants, even in cases where the Norwegian government or private individuals had benefited from the confiscation after the war.

In response to this debate, the Norwegian Ministry of Justice on 29 March 1996, named a commission to investigate what was done with Jewish assets during the war. The commission consisted of County governor of Vest Agder, Oluf Skarpnes as its chair, professor of law Thor Falkanger, professor of history Ole Kristian Grimnes, district court judge Guri Sunde, director at National Archival Services of Norway, psychologist Berit Reisel, and cand.philol. Bjarte Bruland, Bergen. Consultant Torfinn Vollan from the Skarpnes's office acted as the commission's secretary. Of the commission's members, Dr. Reisel and Mr. Bruland had been nominated by the Jewish community in Norway. Anne Hals resigned from the commission early in the process, and Eli Fure from the same institution was named in her place.

The commission worked together for a year, but it became apparent that were diverging views on premises for the group's analysis.

  • The majority focused its effort on arriving at an accurate accounting of the assets lost during the war using conventional assumptions and information in available records.
  • The minority, consisting of Reisel and Bruland, sought a more in-depth understanding of the historical sequence of events around the loss of individual assets, as well as both the intended and actual effect of the confiscation and subsequent events, whether the owners were deported, killed, or escaped.

By all accounts, the commission had difficulty unifying these views, and on 23 June 1997, two separate reports were submitted to the Ministry of Justice. After considerable debate in the media, the government accepted the findings of the minority report and initiated financial compensation and issuing a public apology.

Assessment of financial loss

The Nazi authorities confiscated all Jewish property with an administrative penstroke. This included commercial property such as retail stores, factories, workshops, etc.; and also personal property such as residences, bank accounts, automobiles, securities, furniture, and other fixtures they could find. Jewelry and other personal valuables were usually taken by German officials as "voluntary contributions to the German war effort." In addition, Jewish professionals were typically deprived of any legal right to practice their profession: attorneys were disbarred, physicians and dentists lost their licenses, and craftsmen were locked out of their trade associations. Employers were pressured to fire all Jewish employees. In many cases, Jewish proprietors were forced to continue to work at their confiscated businesses for the benefit of the "new owners."[40]

Assets were often sold at fire sale prices or assigned at a token price to Nazis, Germans, or their sympathizers.

The administration of these assets was performed by a "Liquidation board for confiscated Jewish assets" that accounted for the assets as they were seized and their disposition. For these purposes, the board continued to treat each estate as a bankrupt legal entity, charging expenses even after the assets had been disposed. As a result, there was a significant discrepancy between the value of the assets for the rightful owners, and the value assessed by the confiscating authorities.

This was further complicated by the methodology employed by the legitimate Norwegian government after the war. In order to restore confiscated assets to their owners, the government was guided by public policy to alleviate the economic impact on the economy by reducing compensation to approximate a sense of fairness and finance the reconstruction of the country's economy. The assessed value was thereby reduced by the Nazis' liquidation practices and was further reduced by the discounting applied as a result of governmental policy after the war.[41]

Norwegian estate law imposes estate tax on inheritance passed from the deceased to his/her heirs depending on the relationship between the two. This tax was compounded at each step of inheritance. As no death certificates had been issued for Jews murdered in German concentration camps, the deceased were listed as missing. Their estates were held in probate pending a declaration of death and charged for administrative expenses.

By the time all these factors had had their effect on the valuation of the confiscated assets, very little was left. In total, NOK 7.8 million was awarded to principals and heirs of Jewish property confiscated by the Nazis. This was less than the administrative fees charged by governmental agencies for probate. It did not include assets seized by the government that belonged to non-Norwegian citizens, and that of citizens that left no legal heirs. This last category was formidable, as 230 entire Jewish households were killed during the course of the Shoah.

Legacy

Education, remembrance and research

Since 2002, Norway has commemorated International Holocaust Memorial Day on 27 January. In 2003 Norway became a member of IHRA (International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance) and served as Chair in 2009.[42]

Monuments

The first Holocaust-related monument in Norway was inaugurated in Trondheim in 1947.;[42] in later years, monuments in Haugesund (to commemorate Moritz Rabinowitz), at the pier in Oslo from which the Donau sailed, at Falstad, in Kristiansund in Trondheim (over Cissi Klein), and at schools have also raised the awareness. Snublesteiner ("stumbling stones") have been placed in many Norwegian streets outside the apartments where the holocaust victims lived before deportation.

Notable remorse

Emergence of literature about the Holocaust in Norway

Herman Sachnowitz's Det angår også deg,[45] was published in 1978.[46]

The literature since then can be categorized as follows:

  • Comprehensive historical accounts of the Holocaust in Norway, which include Abrahamsen 1991 and the first 336 pages of Mendelsohn 1986, but also monographs such as Jan Otto Johansen (1984) and Per Ole Johansen (1984)
  • Books that cover specific aspects of the Holocaust, such as Ulstein 2006 about the escapes to Sweden and Ottosen (1994) about the deportation, or Cohen (2000)
  • Case studies of individuals and families. Some of these are biographical, such as Komissar (1995), Søbye (2003),
  • In-depth studies on specific issues, such as Skarpnesutvalget (1997) and Johansen (2006)

One issue that has been highlighted is the hypothesis that many Norwegians viewed Jews as outsiders, whose fate was of no direct concern to Norwegians.[47]

The Norwegian Center for Studies of Holocaust and Religious Minorities has facilitated research about the holocaust, and the institute has published the findings. The Falstad Center at the former site of the Falstad concentration camp provides another forum on humanitarian aspects of the German occupation. Jewish museums have recently been established in Oslo and Trondheim, and there have been notable papers written within criminology about the legal purge in Norway after World War II.

The author of a 2014 book (Den største forbrytelsen) received the Brage Prize. The book received great reviews, but also criticism from historians at Jødisk Museum in Oslo—Mats Tangestuen and Torill Torp-Holte—for losing sight of important nuances in the portrayal of who were helpers and who were violators.[48]

Research

In 2010 the doctoral dissertation of Synne Corell was published as a book. In it she criticizes major works about the war, and how they deal with the fate of Norwegian Jews during World War II.[2]

In 2011, historian Odd-Bjørn Fure said that most of the Norwegian research on the Holocaust and World War II is being conducted by the Norwegian Center for Studies of Holocaust and Religious Minorities (HL-Senteret).[49]

In 2014 Jahn Otto Johansen said that "the Norwegian Cabinet [in exile] in London, and Milorg's leadership, as well as large parts of Norwegian society, did not particularly care about the Jews. There is agreement about this among seriøse historians. - I can refer to [the book by] Samuel Abrahamsen Norway's response to the Holocaust. I cooperated closely with" him "and discovered how many worked against his project because the [Norwegian] Cabinet [in] London's-, Milorg's- and Norwegian society's alleged positive attitude towards the Jews, was not to be doubted".[50]

In 2014 author Marte Michelet said that more research is needed about "What role did the Jewish networks have in organizing the flight[s of individuals]? Who was responsible for the warning[s], and who did the warning reach? - We know little about the money involved in the trafficking of refugees. To what degree did helpers receive payment, what sums were to be paid, and how did that play a role in who was able to flee, and who was not able to flee?"[51]

Notes

  1. ^ a b "The Jewish group in Norway in 1941-1942 consisted, prior to escape and deportation, of 2173 persons. The majority of these came to the country around 1905. Between 1918 and 1940 additional Jewish refugees from the continent were added to this group, see the majority's report chapter 3.1. In all, 530 persons were not Norwegian citizens. Of these, 290 were stateless." From Skarpnesutvalget (1997).
  2. ^ a b Michelet, Marte (15 November 2014). "Bare en detalj". Dagbladet.no.
  3. ^ These numbers do not include Jewish Soviet or Polish prisoners of war that died in captivity as a result of murder or mistreatment in Norwegian camps, nor Allied Jewish soldiers killed in action in Norway. There is some evidence that prisoners of war who were found to be Jewish were singled out and were abused. Mendelsohn 1986.
  4. ^ Kronikk: Frontingen av «Den største forbrytelsen» gir en Holocaust-historie uten nyanser [Op-ed: To front the book The greatest crime, gives a history of the Holocaust—without nuances]
  5. ^ a b "Norway". encyclopedia.ushmm.org.
  6. ^ Ottosen, Kristian (1994). "Vedlegg 1". I slik en natt; historien om deportasjonen av jøder fra Norge (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. pp. 334–360. ISBN 82-03-26049-7.
  7. ^ a b Dag Roard Fosnes (2006). "Politiets rolle i det norske Shoah" (in Norwegian). University of Bergen Faculty of Law. Retrieved 11 January 2008.
  8. ^ Espen Søbye (2000). "Et mørkt kapittel i statistikkens historie" (PDF). Statistikk og historie (in Norwegian). Oslo/Kongsvinger: Statistics Norway: 117–135.
  9. ^ In August of the same year, radio confiscation orders were extended to all Norwegian civilians. According to Ringdal (see bibliography), it is thought that targeting Jews gave the authorities a "trial balloon" both for identifying Jewish individuals and confiscating radios.
  10. ^ Røde, Gro (March 2005). "Folkeregister i gale hender?". Tobias - journal of the Oslo City Archives (in Norwegian).
  11. ^ Halvor Hegtun (27 February 2015). NSB sa ja til slavedrift - Disse russerfangene ble tvunget til å bygge Nordlandsbanen. Så skulle de glemmes. Aftenposten A-magasinet. p. 26. Archived from the original on 1 March 2015.
  12. ^ Ottosen, Kristian (1994). i Slik en natt: historien om deportasjonen av jøder fra Norge [Such a night: the history about deportation of Jews from Norway] (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. p. 32. ISBN 8203260497.
  13. ^ Austad, Lene. "He was never invited to anyone; "Us" and "Them" in the Man Who Loved Haugesund". Dictum. Archived from the original on 29 August 2007. Retrieved 13 January 2008.
  14. ^ "Ephraim Wolff Koritzinsky". Safon (in Norwegian). Archived from the original on 4 July 2008. Retrieved 23 February 2008.
  15. ^ Komissar, Gerson (24 August 1997). "Den oversette premiss" (in Norwegian). Dagbladet. Retrieved 13 January 2008.
  16. ^ Reitan 2005.
  17. ^ a b "Aldri mer 26. november". Klassekampen.
  18. ^ a b c d Mendelsohn 1992.
  19. ^ Holmlund, Jan Thomas (25 August 2009). "Edgar Brichta var nazisjefens jødiske fostersønn". Dagbladet.no.
  20. ^ "Quislings hønsegård" (PDF).
  21. ^ Johannessen, Simen Tveitereid Foto: Jan (3 July 2015). "Det siste vitnet". www.dn.no.
  22. ^ [1]
  23. ^ [2]
  24. ^ Ottosen (1994)
  25. ^ a b c Pryser, Tore. "Mange varslet jødene" [Many warned the Jews]. Aftenposten. Retrieved 22 November 2014.
  26. ^ Den allvitende forteller - Etter hvert som beretningen skrider frem er det ikke lenger mulig å skille mellom det som redelig er hentet fra andre – og der annenhåndskilder tendensiøst tilpasses forfatterens eget foretrukne narrativ om krigen. [The all-knowing narrator- As the narration proceeds, it is no longer possible to differentiate what is appropriately fetched from others - and where annenhåndskilder (or secondhand sources) are tendensiøst fitted to the author's preferred narrative about the war.]
  27. ^ Dypvik, Astrid Sverresdotter (24 November 2006). "Ei ubehageleg historie" (in Norwegian). Morgenbladet. Archived from the original on 19 March 2008. Retrieved 15 February 2008.
  28. ^ Per Ole Johansen (December 2000). ""Politiet har fortsatt et renommé å ivareta" - Arrestasjonene og deportasjonen av norske jøder høsten 1942". Festskrift til Victor Lind (in Norwegian). Kulturnett. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 19 February 2008.
  29. ^ Ulstein 2006, pp. 236-69.
  30. ^ Mendelsohn 1986, pp. 224-5.
  31. ^ Abrahamsen 1991, pp. 137-9.
  32. ^ Norwegian government (1998). "11.6 Illegal motstandsvirksomhet". NOU 1998:12 (in Norwegian). Norges offentlige utredninger. Archived from the original on 30 March 2010.
  33. ^ Abrahamsen 1991, p. 10.
  34. ^ "Brev til Quisling vedrørende jødeforfølgelsene 1942" (in Norwegian). Kirkehistorisk arkiv ved Norsk Lærerakademi. Retrieved 12 September 2011. Those who signed included members of the Interim Church Leadership (Den Midlertidige Kirkeledelse) – Ole Kristian Hallesby, Ludvig Hope, Henrik Hille, James Maroni, Gabriel Skagestad, Wollert Krohn-Hansen, and Andreas Fleischer (Eivind Berggrav, Bishop of Oslo, under house arrest by the Nazis, could not sign); the administration of the Faculty of Theology at the University of OsloSigmund Mowinckel, Oluf Kolsrud, Einar Molland, H. Ording, and P. Marstrander; the administration of the MF Norwegian School of Theology – Olaf Moe, Karl Vold, Andreas Seierstad, and Johannes Smemo; various other Lutheran organizations, the leaders of the Baptist church, Missionary association, Sunday School union, Methodist church, Missionary alliance, and Salvation Army. The group was later driven underground when Hallesby was arrested by the Nazis in May 1943.
  35. ^ Westlie, Bjørn (24 May 2008). "Hun kom for sent til Auschwitz" (in Norwegian). Oslo, Norway: Dagens Næringsliv. p. 46.
  36. ^ a b c Bjørn Westlie (6 March 2015). "Å fortie historien". Klassekampen. p. 19.
  37. ^ Guri Kulås (27 February 2015). "Fleire bøker viser korleis offentlege etatar og private selskap tente på den tyske okkupasjonen av Noreg: Slavane som bygde Noreg". Klassekampen. p. 21.
  38. ^ Halvor Hegtun (27 February 2015). NSB sa ja til slavedrift - Disse russerfangene ble tvunget til å bygge Nordlandsbanen. Så skulle de glemmes. Aftenposten A-magasinet. p. 31. Archived from the original on 1 March 2015.
  39. ^ AS, TV 2. "Historiker forventer holocaust-unnskyldning". TV 2.
  40. ^ A telling example is the case of Per Kjølner, a member of Nasjonal Samling who bought at a heavily discounted price the Plesansky family's apparel operations in Tønsberg, which formed the basis for the chain store Adelsten. The one surviving family, Bernhard Plesansky, tried to recover his property but was unable to and emigrated to the United Kingdom. Kjølner was never convicted of any crime. See Jahnsen, Lasse (19 June 1997). "Adelsten må ta sitt ansvar" (in Norwegian). Dagbladet. Archived from the original on 1 December 2008. Retrieved 13 July 2008.
  41. ^ Various calculations estimate the capital depletion during the war at about 10%. In addition, scarcity in the global economy complicated import and export activity. Rationing continued in Norway until 1961.
  42. ^ a b https://www.holocaustremembrance.com/member-countries/holocaust-education-remembrance-and-research-norway
  43. ^ a b "– Skamplett for rettsvesenet". dagen.no. 2 October 2014.
  44. ^ Halvor Hegtun (27 February 2015). NSB sa ja til slavedrift - Disse russerfangene ble tvunget til å bygge Nordlandsbanen. Så skulle de glemmes. Aftenposten A-magasinet. p. 32. Archived from the original on 1 March 2015.
  45. ^ "Det angår også deg (VG3) – Larvik Museum".
  46. ^ "Månedens gjenstand i januar] [Item of the month, for January".
  47. ^ Madsen, Per Anders (1 December 2006). "Holocausthjelperen som gikk fri" (in Norwegian). Aftenposten. Archived from the original on 19 March 2008. Retrieved 22 February 2008. - "The acquittal [of Rød] was possible because Rød's victims, the Norwegian Jews, were separated from the national community that was consolidated by the post-war trial. They didn't belong to the big we - neither before, during, or after the war .... the Rød decision is low point for the rule of law, Fure points out. This is the case also for a society that more often than ever must ask itself what terms such as 'Norwegian,' 'multicultural, and 'national community' actually mean."
  48. ^ Midttun, Lasse (28 November 2014). "Skottelåven og holocaust". Morgenbladet. p. 48.
  49. ^ "- Så dere er bortimot alene om å drive forskning på andre verdenskrig og Holocaust? - HL-senteret utfører det meste av forskningen som foregår innen dette felt." Archived 30 November 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  50. ^ Jahn Otto Johansen (6 November 2014). "Jødene ble ikke prioritert!" [The Jews were not prioritized]. Aftenposten. p. 11.
  51. ^ forfatter, Marte Michelet Journalist og. "Kronikk: Nye briller på Holocaust". Aftenposten.

Bibliography

Works about the Holocaust in Norway

  • "Historikk jøder fra Agder" (in Norwegian). Stiftelsen Arkivet. Archived from the original on 22 July 2011. Retrieved 17 January 2008. The article depicts the fate of Jews in the Agder counties.
  • Abrahamsen, Samuel (1991). Norway's Response to the Holocaust: A Historical Perspective. Holocaust Library. ISBN 0-89604-117-4. One of two comprehensive treatises on the Holocaust in Norway.
  • Berman, Irene Levin (2008). Flukten fra Holocaust (in Norwegian). Oslo: Orion. ISBN 978-82-458-0865-0; the history of the Holocaust against the background of the author's memories of her own escape into Sweden. Published in English as: "'We Are Going to Pick Potatoes': Norway and the Holocaust, The Untold Story" (Hamilton Books, 2010, ISBN 978-0-7618-5011-3).
  • Bruland, Bjarte (1995). "Forsøket på å tilintetgjøre de norske jødene" [The attempt to exterminate the Norwegian Jews]. University of Bergen (academic thesis).
  • Feinberg, Kai; Stefansen, Arnt. Fange 79018 vender tilbake (in Norwegian). Oslo: Cappelen. ISBN 82-02-15705-6. Personal account of survivor Kai Feinberg, with historical notes by Arnt Stefansen.
  • Gerstenfeld, Manfred. "Norway: The Courage of a Small Jewish Community; Holocaust Restitution and antisemitism: An interview with Bjarte Bruland and Irene Levin". Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. Retrieved 17 January 2008.
  • Hegtun, Halvor (31 October 2004). "Auschwitz er en del av livet" (in Norwegian). Aftenposten. Retrieved 21 January 2008. A newspaper article about a return to Auschwitz by Norwegian survivors.
  • Johansen, Jahn Otto (1984). Det hendte også her (in Norwegian). Oslo: Cappelen. ISBN 82-02-09894-7.
  • Johansen, Per Ole (1984). Oss selv nærmest: Norge og jødene 1914-1943 (in Norwegian). Oslo: Gyyldendal. ISBN 82-05-15062-1.
  • Komissar, Vera; Sundvor, Bjørg (1992). Nådetid: norske jøder på flukt 1942 (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-17170-2. It is about twelve case examples of Norwegian Jews who escaped and survived.
  • Komissar, Vera; Nyrønning, Sverre; Paltiel, Julius (1995). På tross av alt: Julius Paltiel - norsk jøde i Auschwitz (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-26086-1. It is about the story of Julius Paltiel, who survived deportation and imprisonment in Auschwitz.
  • Lyngvi, Arne (2005). Fordi de var jøder... Da Holocaust rammet noen medmennesker i Bergen og Hordaland (in Norwegian). Bergen: Sigma forlag. ISBN 82-7916-035-3. It covers specifically the Jewish population of Bergen and Hordaland affected by the Holocaust.
  • Michelet, Marte (2014). "Den største forbrytelsen" [The greatest crime].
  • Norwegian Government (1997). Inndragning av jødisk eiendom i Norge under den 2. verdenskrig. Norges offentlige utredninger (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statens forvaltningstjeneste. ISBN 82-583-0437-2. NOU 1997:22 ("Skarpnesutvalget"). Retrieved 16 January 2008; report from the governmental commission on the confiscation and disposition of Jewish assets. An English translation of the full minority report and a summary of the majority report was published by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in June 1997, but without the ministry's insignia or an ISBN registration. It was titled "The Reisel/Bruland Report on the Confiscation of Jewish Property in Norway during World War II," and is commonly known as the "blue book" and is on file at the Norwegian Center for Studies of Holocaust and Religious Minorities.
  • Ottosen, Kristian (1994). I slik en natt - historien om deportasjonen av jøder fra Norge. Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-26049-7; on the deportation of Jews from Norway to concentration camps, including case studies.
  • Sachnowitz, Herman; Arnold Jacoby (1978). Det angår også deg (in Norwegian). Stabekk: Den norske bokklubben. ISBN 82-525-0544-9. - an early personal account of a survivor's experiences.
  • Savosnick, Robert; Hans Melien (1986). Jeg ville ikke dø (in Norwegian) (2nd ed.). Oslo/Risør: Cappelen (1st), Aktive Fredsforlag (2nd). ISBN 82-92627-00-6.
  • Søbye, Espen (2003). Kathe, alltid vært i Norge (in Norwegian). Oslo: Oktober. ISBN 82-7094-926-4.
  • Ulstein, Ragnar (2006) [1995]. Jødar på flukt (in Norwegian) (2nd ed.). Samlaget. ISBN 82-521-6988-0; on the escape and underground railroad to Sweden, including case studies.

Works about the Jewish minority in Norway

  • Mendelsohn, Oskar (1969). Jødenes historie i Norge gjennom 300 år: Bind 1 1660-1940 (in Norwegian). Universitetsforlaget. ISBN 82-00-02523-3.
  • Mendelsohn, Oskar (1986). Jødenes historie i Norge gjennom 300 år: Bind 2 1940-1985 (in Norwegian) (2nd ed.). Universitetsforlaget. pp. pps 13–262. ISBN 82-00-02524-1. A comprehensive treatment of the Holocaust in Norway.
  • Mendelsohn, Oskar (1992). Jødene i Norge: Historien om en minoritet (in Norwegian). Universitetsforlaget. ISBN 82-00-21669-1.
  • Reisel (editor), Micha (1992). Du skal fortelle det til dine barn: Det mosaiske trossamfund i Oslo 1892-1992 (in Norwegian). Oslo: Det mosaiske trossamfund i Oslo. ISBN 82-992611-0-4.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  • Reitan, Jon (2005). Jødene fra Trondheim (in Norwegian). Trondheim: Tapir akademisk forlag. ISBN 82-519-2044-2.

Works about Norwegian World War II history

  • Cohen, Maynar (2000). A Stand Against Tyranny: Norway's Physicians and the Nazis. Wayne State University Press. ISBN 0-8143-2934-9. It is about the resistance network organized by Norwegian physicians.
  • Grimnes, Ole Kristian, ed. (1984). Norge i krig (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-11144-0. A comprehensive, 8-volume survey of the war in Norway, organized by topic.
  • Johansen, Per Ole (2006). På siden av rettsoppgjøret. Unipub. ISBN 978-82-7477-233-5. - A series of interdisciplinary works at the University of Oslo on bias in the Legal purge in Norway after World War II.
  • Books by Kristian Ottosen:
    • O., K. (1989). Natt og tåke : historien om Natzweiler-fangene (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-16108-1. It is about the Nacht und Nebel prisoners in the Natzweiler concentration camp, with an emphasis on the Norwegians held there.
    • O., K. (1990). Liv og død : historien om Sachsenhausen-fangene (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-16484-6. It is about the Sachsenhausen concentration camp.
    • O., K. (1991). Kvinneleiren : historien om Ravensbrück-fangene (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-16791-8. It is about the Ravensbrück concentration camp, primarily for women.
    • O., K. (1993). Bak lås og slå : historien om norske kvinner og menn i Hitlers fengsler og tukthus (in Norwegian). Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-26000-4. It is about the deportation and imprisonment of Norwegian men and women in prisons throughout Germany.
    • O., K. (1995). Nordmenn i fangenskap 1940-1945 (in Norwegian). Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. ISBN 82-00-22372-8. It is an authoritative list of Norwegian individuals who had been held in German captivity during World War II.
  • Ringdal, Nils Johan (1987). Mellom barken og veden: politiet under okkupasjonen. Oslo: Aschehoug. ISBN 82-03-15616-9. It is about the role of Norwegian police during the occupation.

External links

Media related to The Holocaust in Norway at Wikimedia Commons

Antisemitism in Norway

Antisemitism in Norway has a history, including the Holocaust in Norway. It has also been a subject of discussion in the public debate about the Arab–Israeli conflict. An antisemitic event was the editorial cartoon printed in Dagsavisen that depicted a Haredi Jew rewriting the ten commandments to include "thou shall murder". According to several political commentators, the antisemitism in Norway is institutional. Alan M. Dershowitz sharply criticized Norway for its treatment of Jews, writing that "All Jews are apparently the same in this country that has done everything in its power to make life in Norway nearly impossible for Jews. Norway was apparently the first modern nation to make stunning of domestic animals compulsory, outlawing the method for production of Kosher meat. Currently, about 1,400 Jews live in Norway.

Berthold Epstein

Berthold Epstein (1 April 1890 – 9 June 1962) was a pediatrician, professor, and scientist who was conscripted as a doctor in the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II.

Carl Fredriksens Transport

Carl Fredriksens Transport was the code name for an operation during the occupation of Norway by Nazi Germany to help Jews and other persecuted Norwegians escape persecution, deportation, and murder in death camps.

Center for Studies of the Holocaust and Religious Minorities (Norway)

The Norwegian Center for Studies of the Holocaust and Religious Minorities (Norwegian: Senter for studier av Holocaust og livssynsminoriteter, or HL-senteret) opened its doors to the public on August 24, 2006, in the former residence of Vidkun Quisling known as Villa Grande, on the peninsula of Bygdøy in Oslo.

The center's endowment was donated by the Norwegian government at the behest of the Jewish community of Norway as part of the restitution made to Norwegian Jews for the confiscation of their property while Norway was occupied during World War II.

The center was established under the auspices of the University of Oslo and has a twofold mission:

Educating the public on the Holocaust, especially as related to the Norwegian experience, i.e., disenfranchisement, persecution, arrests, confinement, confiscation, and deportation to death camps outside of Norway, especially Auschwitz. This extends to studies of antisemitism in and outside of Norway, in the past, present, and future.

Studying ethnic and religious minorities, especially in Norway.To this end, the center offers educational materials, programs, exhibitions, a museum, and library collections. Though it is an independent entity, it has established formal relationships with the University of Oslo, Yad Vashem, and the Jewish Museum in Trondheim.

On January 23, 2008, the center announced that an object of some importance had been stolen from the center's museum on or before November 23, 2007. The museum was temporarily closed after this to improve the security system [1]

Cissi Klein

Cissi Pera Klein (19 April 1929 in Narvik – 3 March 1943 in Auschwitz) was a Norwegian Jewish girl who is commemorated every year as one of the victims of the Holocaust in her home town in Trondheim. Her parents had emigrated to Norway from the Baltic states around 1905, at first living in North Norway, but then establishing a retail store in Trondheim. She was arrested at her school - Kalvskinnet skole - on 6 October 1942, detained, and ultimately deported with the transport ship Gotenland from Oslo to Stettin, from which she was sent by train to Auschwitz, where she was murdered the day she arrived, on 3 March 1943. She was 13 years old.Cissi Klein became famous in her home town of Trondheim in the mid-1990s, when the city decided to appoint one of its 72 residents who were deported as a symbol for the persecution during the war. In 1995, the street where she lived was named Cissi Kleins gate (at 63.429574°N 10.38708°E / 63.429574; 10.38708), and a statue of her made by Tore Bjørn Skjølsvik and Tone Ekwas was unveiled in the park nearby in 1997. School children from her school visit this site on 6 October every year to lay down flowers in her memory. The composer Ståle Kleiberg has written a musical piece in her memory.

Feldmann case

The Feldmann case (Norwegian: Feldmannsaken) was a controversial criminal case in Norway in which two border guides admitted to killing an elderly Jewish couple during their escape from the Holocaust in Norway, and stealing their money. A jury acquitted the two of culpability for the killing, accepting their explanation that the couple endangered not just the mission but the viability of the escape route to Sweden.

Jewish deportees from Norway during World War II

Prior to the deportation of individuals of Jewish background to the concentration camps there were at least 2,173 Jews in Norway. During the Nazi occupation of Norway 772 of these were arrested, detained, and/or deported, most of them sent to Auschwitz. 742 were murdered in the camps, 23 died as a result of extrajudicial execution, murder, and suicide during the war. Between 28 and 34 of those deported survived their continued imprisonment (following their deportation). The Norwegian police and German authorities kept records of these victims, and so, researchers were able to compile information about the deportees.

Kjesäter

Kjesäter is a manor in the municipality of Vingåker in the county of Södermanland that now serves as a folkhögskola and youth hostel. During World War II, it served as a refugee camp and transit center for refugees fleeing Nazi persecution in Norway.

Leo Eitinger

Leo Eitinger (12 December 1912 – 15 October 1996) was a Norwegian psychiatrist, author and educator. He was a Holocaust survivor who studied the late-onset psychological trauma experienced by people who went through separation and psychological pain early in life only to show traumatic experience decades later. He devoted a long period studying posttraumatic stress disorder among Holocaust survivors, which had led Holocaust survivors including Paul Celan (1920– 1970), Primo Levi (1919–1987) and many others to commit suicide several decades after the experience.

Martial law in Trondheim in 1942

During the occupation of Norway by Germany, the occupying powers imposed martial law in Trondheim and surrounding areas effective October 6, 1942 through October 12, 1942. During this time, 34 Norwegians were killed by extrajudicial execution. This also served as a pretext for the arrest and detention of all male Jewish inhabitants of the area as part of the Holocaust in Norway.

Nansenhjelpen

Nansenhjelpen (formally called Nansen Hjelp, variously called the Nansen Relief in English and Nansenhilfe in German) was a Norwegian humanitarian organization founded by Odd Nansen in 1936 to provide safe haven and assistance in Norway for Jewish refugees from areas in Europe under Nazi control. It was formally disbanded in 1945, but effectively ceased operations in late 1942, after all Jews in Norway had been deported, murdered, or had fled into Sweden.

Nazi concentration camps in Norway

During the German occupation of Norway in World War II the civilian occupying authorities with the Quisling regime and the German Wehrmacht operated a number of camps in Norway, including around 110 prison camps.The Wehrmacht camps were largely POW camps and were scattered throughout the country. Some of these had extremely high mortality rates, owing to inhumane conditions and brutality.

Both established and improvised jails and prisons throughout the country were also used for internment by the Nazi authorities. In particular the Sicherheitspolizei and Sicherheitsdienst, headquartered at Victoria Terrasse, were notorious for torture and abuse of prisoners. Also, Arkivet in Kristiansand and Bandeklosteret in Trondheim became synonymous with torture and abuse.

The designated concentration camps were not classified as "KZ-Lager" by the Nazis, but rather as Häftingslager ("Detainee Camps") under the administration of the Nazi "security police," the SS and Gestapo. The Nazi authorities deported over 700 Jews from Norway to Auschwitz, over 500 Nacht und Nebel prisoners to Natzweiler; and thousands more to Sachsenhausen, Ravensbrück and other prisons and camps in Germany. Most of these stayed in Norwegian camps during transit.

Although abuse, torture, and murder were commonplace in these camps, none of them were designated or functioned as extermination camps, nor did they reach the scale seen in camps in Germany, occupied Poland, and Austria. It is estimated that between 38,000 and 40,000 individuals passed through this camp system, for a total of 60,000 prisoner years.

The camps served varying purposes, such as:

Internment of political prisoners, especially socialists and communists, but also religious dissenters.

Internment of prisoners of war (Stammlager / Stalag) - especially Soviet and Yugoslavian soldiers

Internment of so-called "bomb hostages" (Geisellager) - prominent Norwegians who would be executed in the event of the resistance movement bombing Nazi targets

Transit internment of various prisoners bound for camps in Germany and Poland (Durchgangslager / Dulag) - including Jews, prominent political prisoners, and others.The Nazi authorities destroyed most of the records related to the camps and prisons they ran during the occupation. Some distinction was made between camps and prisons run by Norwegian Nazis and those run by German Nazi organizations, though it is safe to say that all atrocities took place under the authority of a unified command.

Effectively every local prison was used for these purposes by the Nazis, but several full-fledged camps were also established.

Odd Nansen

Odd Nansen (6 December 1901 – 27 June 1973) was a Norwegian architect, author, and humanitarian. He is credited with being a co-founder of UNICEF and for his humanitarian efforts on behalf of Jews in the early years of World War II.

Otto Eisler

Otto Eisler (1 June 1893 – 27 July 1968) was a Czech architect, noted for his contributions to International style in architecture.

Ruth Maier

Ruth Maier (10 November 1920 in Vienna, Austria – 1 December 1942 in Auschwitz, Poland) was an Austrian woman whose diaries describing her experiences of the Holocaust in Austria and Norway were published in 2007; reviews described her as "Norway's Anne Frank."

SS Donau (1929)

SS Donau was a Norddeutscher Lloyd refrigerated cargo ship. In the Second World War the Kriegsmarine used it as a transport ship between Germany and Norway. She became known as the "slave ship" after the SS and Gestapo transported 540 Jews from Norway to Stettin, from where they were taken by train to Auschwitz. Only nine of those deported on the Donau survived.

Sigrid Helliesen Lund

Sigrid Helliesen Lund (23 February 1892 – 8 December 1987) was a Norwegian peace activist, noted for her humanitarian efforts throughout most of the 20th century, and in particular her resistance to the occupation of Norway during World War II. On 14 May 2006, Yad Vashem posthumously named her one of the Righteous Among the Nations for her work during the Holocaust.

Statspolitiet

Statspolitiet (shortened STAPO) was from 1941 to 1945 a National Socialist armed police force that consisted of Norwegian officials after Nazi German pattern. It operated independently of the ordinary Norwegian police. The force was established on June 1, 1941 during the German occupation of Norway. The initiative for the force came from the later chief Karl Marthinsen and other prominent members of the collaborationist party Nasjonal Samling. At its peak, in 1944 there were 350 employees in Statspolitiet, in addition to a larger number who collaborated or rendered services for them. Its purpose was primarily to combat so-called political crimes, refugees, espionage, sabotage, armed resistance and other kinds of resistance against the German occupation forces or the Norwegian collaborationist Quisling regime. Statspolitiet played an important role during the Holocaust in Norway, aiding in the deportation of the Jews in Norway. Norwegians were arrested by contemporary laws, and many were later sent to prison camps in Norway and concentration camps in what was then Germany. Statspolitiet was organized with a headquarters in Oslo and six subsidiaries in Oslo and Aker, Stavanger, Bergen, Trondheim, Tromsø and Kirkenes. Statspolitiet was subordinate to the chief of the security police and the Norwegian Minister of Police, Jonas Lie. Statspolitiet also received orders directly from the German Sicherheitspolizei. The general of Statspolitiet, Karl A Marthinsen was liquidated by the Norwegian resistance movement on 8 February 1945. This caused massive reprisals, in which 34 imprisoned resistance fighters were executed at Akershus Fortress.

Timeline of the Holocaust in Norway

A timeline of the Holocaust in Norway is detailed in the events listed below.

The Holocaust in Europe
Sovereign states
States with limited
recognition
Dependencies and
other entities
Theaters
General
aspects
Participants
Timeline
Other
aspects
Africa
North America
South America
Asia
Europe
Oceania
Administrative divisions in Nazi Germany and German occupations
Administrative
divisions
of
Nazi Germany
German
occupations
Related

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.