Estonia: SS to be given “freedom fighter” status

11 January 2012
Die Tageszeitung

Die Tageszeitung, 11 January 2012

"SS canonised," leads Tageszeitung, with a front-page photo of the leader of the Nazi organisation, Heinrich Himmler, on a visit to SS volunteers in Estonia in October 1943.

The Berlin daily is referring to a bill that the Estonian Minister of Defence is hoping to have adopted in March. According to the text, all those who took part in the fight against the Soviet Union during the Second World War will be granted the status of “freedom fighters,” which includes Estonian members of the SS.

Previous attempts to push through the bill failed in 2006 and on 2010. This time around, "majority support appears to guaranteed,” reports TAZ. The Russian embassy in Tallinn has described the bill as “blasphemous,” while the German Green Party has criticised a "retrospective justification of the atrocities perpetrated by Hitler’s henchmen in the Soviet Union."