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An outstanding book about Lithuanian nationalist’s activity and soviet repressions appears in the second half of September

The appearing of the volume “On the eve of the Holocaust: Lithuanian Activists Front and soviet repressions in Lithuania, 1940-1941” is expected in the second half of September. This book is a collection of documents containing those from Russia, Lithuania, Ukraine and USA. Many of them are published for the first time.

“At this moment it’s the most complete collection of documents related to the repressions of soviet state security in Lithuania in 1940-1941, - says the editor of the book Alexander Dyukov, - Besides the volume is the first Russian edition of some the key documents of the Lithuanian Activists Front previously published in Lithuanian, thus unavailable for the most number of researchers”.

The documents published in this book, change our view on many historical myths related to the events of 1940-1941 in Lithuania and push the readers to reevaluate the history of soviet repressions, as well as the first tragic pages of the history of the Holocaust during the Nazi occupation.

The Lithuanian Activists Front is a clandestine nationalist organization founded in autumn of 1940, closely related with the German security. Its units start their actions right away after the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union, June the 22nd. It calls “The June Uprising” in Lithuanian historiography. Among actions accomplished by Lithuanian nationalists there were diversions in the soviet’s back, attacks on small Red Army’s units and some State establishments, mass violence exercised against communists, pro-soviet Lithuanians and Jews. So-called Provisional Government of Lithuania, created by the Lithuanian Activists Front, passed a resolution with the decision to make a concentration camp for Jews (the first concentration camp in occupied soviet territories), and “national partisans” have actively took a part in the “work” of Einsatzgruppen “A”.

One week before the Nazi invasion, in June of 1941, mass deportations of “anti-Soviet elements” out from Lithuania were realized by the soviet government. The 14th of June about 17, 5 thousand people were “withdrew” by the NKVD and NKGB. Among them about 5 thousand people were arrested and imprisoned in GULAG camps. Approximately 12, 5 thousand people, including woman and children, were exiled to remote areas of the Soviet Union. The deportation of 14th July, 1941, was the biggest repressive action in Lithuania before the Great Patriotic war. According to internal documents of the soviet state security the necessity to struggle against pro-German nationalist clandestine organizations, the Lithuanian Activists Front, is a reason of above-mentioned mass deportation.

Even this résumé of the events of “The June Uprising” and the mass deportation in June raises a number of questions. Is there a connection between the Lithuanian Activists Front’s activity and the soviet deportation the 14th July, 1941? Is the deportation was really realized in reply to subversive activities of pro-German nationalist clandestine organizations? Or it was premeditated by the soviet power and would have implemented instead of the Lithuanian Activists Front existence? It is true that “The June Uprising” was a response of Lithuanians to the mass deportation of their compatriots or it was prepared before and had nothing to do with soviet repressions? And what was the meaning of mass murder of Jews by Lithuanian “national partisans” in June of 1941: cruel response to the deportation or the crime well-prepared without any connection with this action?

The book “On the eve of the Holocaust: Lithuanian Activists Front and soviet repressions in Lithuania, 1940-1941” tries to shear some light on those complex issues.

“In Lithuania the events of 1940-1941 are very complicated. We can’t describe them by using such clichés as the struggle of “good guys” with “bad guys”, - says Alexander Dyukov, - We are hoping that our volume will help our readers to understand the cause-and-effect relationships of this period of Lithuanian history, having as a consequences many tragedies of human lives, and the level of historical responsibility of each actor.

The collection of documents “On the eve of the Holocaust: Lithuanian Activists Front and soviet repressions in Lithuania, 1940-1941” appears as a part of the series “Eastern Europe. XXth century”, published by “Historical memory” foundation.

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