Federal Republic of Germany’s (FRG) President Frank-Walter Steinmeier said that the war by Nazi Germany against the USSR, Operation Barbarossa (originally named Operation Fritz), was barbaric and that the Germans did not know enough about the horrors of this war.
“This war was German barbarism, it cost the lives of millions of people,” Steinmeier said on Friday in a speech commemorating the tragic 80th anniversary of the June 22, 1941 attack on the Soviet Union.
“Do we often look there, to the unfamiliar east of our continent? Who among the Germans now knows Maly Trostenets near Minsk, where at least 60 thousand people were killed between 1942 and 1944?” the president asked.
He made a big speech at the opening of the exhibition “The scale of one crime. Soviet prisoners of war in World War II” and listed several places of extermination of civilians and battles, including the city of Rzhev, which is now known in the FRG.
On 11th April, Steinmeier had reminded Germany of the Buchenwald concentration camp which Nazi Germany had constructed. It was one of the longest-operating and largest facilities. The largest group at the concentration camp were Soviet prisoners of war and civilians kidnapped as slaves in Nazi-occupied parts of the Soviet Union. An estimated 8,000 Soviet POWs and civilians were executed at the camp. The concentration camp was ultimately captured by the Allied forces on April 12, 1945. An estimated 280,000 prisoners passed through it or its sub-camps scattered across Germany and were forced to contribute their labor to the Nazi war effort and civilian economy. The concentration camp was ultimately captured by the Allied forces on April 12, 1945. About 20 million Soviet citizens were killed in World War II.
Slavic people like the Russians, the Ukrainians, and the Belarusians were deemed unfit to live in the racially pure world the Nazis were trying to bring into existence.