- Rumbula massacre
The Rumbula massacre was the two-day (
November 30, 1941and December 8, 1941) killing of 27,800 Jews in and on the way to Rumbulaforest during the Holocaust. Of these, about 26,800 were Latvian Jews from the Riga Ghettoand approximately 1,000 were German Jews transported to the forest by freight train. The systematic mass murder was carried out by the Nazi Einsatzgruppe Awith the help of local collaborators of the Arajs Kommando, with support from other such Latvian auxiliaries. In charge of the operation was Higher SS and Police Leader Friedrich Jeckeln, who had previously overseen similar massacres in the Ukraine. Rudolf Lange, who later participated in the Wannsee Conference, also took part in organising the massacre. Some of the accusations against Latvian Herberts Cukursregarding crimes perpetrated against Jews are related to the clearing of the Riga Ghetto by the Arajs Kommando.
These tens of thousands of Jews were ordered to disrobe in freezing weather to be shot in the back of the head at close range in pits that were mass graves. Two women survived. One of them, Frida Michelson, took advantage of a distraction and fell into the pit, feigning death among the dead bodies. She survived the war to write the book "I Survived Rumbuli" (Rumbuli is Rumbula in German), later translated into English and published by the US Holocaust Memorial Museum.
During the Holocaust, 90% of Latvia's Jews were murdered. When the war turned against Germany, the bodies at the Rumbula Forest site were ordered dug up and burned. The site has been marked by a series of makeshift memorials over the years. A permanent Rumbula memorial was dedicated in November 2002, 61 years after the killings.
History of the Jews in Latvia
* [http://www.am.gov.lv/en/latvia/History-of-Occupation/briefing-paper3/ The Holocaust in German-Occupied Latvia]
* [http://www.balticsww.com/Jews_Riga.htm Jewish Riga]
* [http://www.rumbula.org The Holocaust in Latvia and Latvia's Jews Yesterday and Today]
** [http://www.rumbula.org/remembering_rumbula.htm Remembering Rumbula]
** [http://www.rumbula.org/liepaja_holocaust_jewish.htm Liepaja Holocaust]
** [http://www.rumbula.org/riga_ghetto.htm Riga Ghetto]
** [http://usdin.dumes.net/esthershord.html Killed in Rumbala forest]
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