cue the lightning bolts

the only question that matters: is it true?

Iran has signed the NPT. As a signatory to the NPT, Iran may rightfully, legally, use nuclear technology for peaceful energy purposes. Iran has submitted to and passed repeated IAEA inspections. The US intelligence community (NIE) does not consider Iran a nuclear threat. Israel refuses to sign the NPT. Israel has an estimated several hundred undeclared nuclear weapons. Russia and China have warned that an attack on Iran will have global consequences. That's the situation in a nutshell. Where to next, people? Where to?

Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth? - Galatians 4:16

11.19.2009

and shall such vigilance be applied to the criminals among us today?

1. 90-yo charged for Nazi massacre...

German prosecutors on Tuesday charged a 90-year-old former SS soldier with 58 counts of murder for the cold-blooded killings of Jewish forced labourers in the final weeks of World War II.

With Allied forces fast overrunning Germany, the man, named in the media as Adolf Storms, was accused of hatching a plot on March 28, 1945 with other SS and members of the Hitler Youth, to slaughter Jewish prisoners in their charge.

The next day, the accused and other SS took at least 57 labourers in several groups into woods near the small town of Deutsch Schützen in Hitler's native Austria near the present-day border with Hungary, prosecutors alleged.

There, the Jews, who were Hungarian, were stripped of their valuables before being made to kneel down in a ditch. Storms and his accomplices then dispatched them with bullets from behind, prosecutors said in a statement.

The same day or the day after, he gunned down a 58th labourer who was too exhausted to continue a forced march. Shooting him in the same "cowardly" manner in the back, prosecutors said. The 90-year-old, a former member of the fifth SS Tank Division "Viking," now lives in the west German industrial city of Duisburg near Cologne. Police raided his residence in December, seizing documents.

Der Spiegel magazine reported last October that investigators were put onto Storms thanks to research into the massacre by a 28-year-old Austrian student, Andreas Forster.

Forster travelled to Duisburg and filmed hours of interviews over several days, finding the elderly man to be "sprightly" but unable to recollect the day of the massacre.

"We informed prosecutors in July," Forster told the magazine, since which time Storms has refused all contact with him. At the time of the massacre, the Nazis were desperately evacuating concentration camps, forcing emaciated prisoners on exhausting marches and killing those too weak to carry on. Just a month later, with the Third Reich in ruins, Hitler shot himself in his bunker as the Red Army swept into Berlin, and the war in Europe, and the Holocaust, were over.

A court in Duisburg now has to decide whether the trial of the man can go ahead. The defendant has two weeks to present evidence or to appeal against the case proceeding.

Prosecutors allege that he was driven by National Socialist ideology according to which his victims were considered to be "of low value," a spokesman said in the statement. News of the charges raised the prospect of another Nazi trial, more than six decades after the end of the fighting and the Nuremberg trials of Hitler's top henchmen.

read more @ the local


2. after young student sleuth entraps him?

A former SS sergeant who worked unnoticed for decades as manager of a rail station has been charged with 58 counts of murder after a student doing undergraduate research uncovered his alleged involvement in a massacre of Jewish forced labourers.

Andreas Forster, a student at the University of Vienna, was working on a project about the massacre, which took place in a forest near the Austrian village of Deutsch Schützen, when he stumbled across Adolf Storms' name in witness testimony.

According to his professor, Walter Manoschek, Mr Forster then obtained files from federal archives in Berlin that enabled him to link the former sergeant to the massacre.

Professor Manoschek visited Mr Storms, 90, at his home in the city of Duisburg several times last year after finding him in the phone book. He conducted about 12 hours of interviews in which Mr Storms repeatedly said that he did not remember the killings.

Mr Storms and unidentified accomplices are accused of forcing at least 57 of the Jewish labourers to hand over their valuables and kneel by a grave before shooting them dead from behind. The killings took place on 29 March 1945. Mr Storms is accused of shooting another Jew the following day, during a forced march from Deutsch Schützen to the village of Hartberg.

The court described the suspect simply as a "retiree from Duisburg," but German authorities have previously identified him as Adolf S. His full name was given in previous trials in Austria related to other suspects in the massacre. He has also been identified as a former member of the 5th SS Panzer Division "Wiking".

The Duisburg court must decide whether there is enough evidence to bring the case to trial.

Mr Storms does not appear on the Simon Wiesenthal Centre's list of most-wanted Nazi war criminals, but the organisation's top Nazi-hunter, Efraim Zuroff, said: "This is a case that clearly shows it is possible, even at this point, to identify perpetrators who bear responsibility for serious crimes committed during the Second World War and bring them to justice."

The remains of the victims of the Deutsch Schützen massacre were found in 1995 in a mass grave by the Austrian Jewish association. A plaque now marks the site.

source: independent

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