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A Call for Justice by Vytautas Žeimantas
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A Call for Justice

by Vytautas Žeimantas

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It's kind of hard to review this book. It's not a memoir -- though it does contain a lot of testimonies -- or a book about the Holocaust in Lithuania per se; rather, it's an aggressive piece of journalism in the style of J'accuse. Zeimantas calls on the United States and other countries to stop harboring Nazi war-criminals and extradite them to Europe for trial and punishment. In the book he provides the accused criminals' current names and addresses, as well as accounts of their crimes in great detail. In one case he even had the person's phone number. (Zeimantas called the man at home, but as soon as the man figured out he was talking to a Lithuanian journalist, he hung up.)

I'm not sure Zeimantas's book did any good. Surely all the people he's talking about must be dead now. I looked up some of the names on the internet and found a lot of obituaries. One of them was deported to Germany in the 1990s, but I can't find out what happened to him after that. Several more were stripped of their American citizenship but not deported or otherwise molested.

I wonder if a good part of the reason why the US didn't extradite these people is because that would have meant sending them to the Soviet Union, and this was during the cold war when the US and the USSR were at each other's throats. Perhaps American officials didn't trust Soviet justice, or just didn't want to give them the satisfaction. In any case "political reasons" is a lousy excuse.

I think I could only recommend this book to people who are REALLY interested in the Holocaust in Lithuania. I was intrigued enough by it to find the author's Facebook page and send him a message (I hope he can read English), but most people would not find much to interest them. ( )
  meggyweg | Dec 13, 2011 |
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