Algirdas Klimaitis[nb 1] (1910 in Kaunas – August 29, 1988 in
Hamburg) was a Lithuanian paramilitary commander, infamous for his
role in the
Kaunas pogrom in June 1941.
It is likely that Klimaitis was an officer in the Lithuanian Army.
During the pre-war years he was editor of the tabloid Dešimt centų
(Ten Cents). His attitudes shifted to anti-communism and
anti-semitism. He joined the Voldemarininkai movement.
When the Nazi Germans occupied Lithuania in June 1941, at the start of
Operation Barbarossa, Klimaitis formed a military unit of roughly 600
members, which was not subordinate to the
Lithuanian Activist Front
Lithuanian Activist Front or
the Provisional Government of Lithuania, and engaged in firefights
with the Soviet army for the control of Kaunas. On the evening of June
23, most of the city was in the hands of the insurgents.
On the night of 25–26 June,
Kaunas pogrom led by Klimaitis' unit was
instigated by SS
Brigadeführer Franz Walter Stahlecker, commanding
officer of Einsatzgruppe A. By 28 June 1941, according to
Stahlecker, 3,800 people had been killed in
Kaunas and a further 1,200
in surrounding towns in the region. Klimaitis' men destroyed
several synagogues and about sixty Jewish houses. Modern sources claim
that the number of victims in Stahlecker's report were probably
After the war, Klimaitis moved to Hamburg, Germany, where he was
discovered in the late 1970s.
Hamburg Police launched an
investigation, but Klimaitis died before the case could be brought to
trial. He died in 1988.
Lithuanian collaboration during World War II
^ In non-Lithuanian texts he is sometimes incorrectly referred to as
Jonas Klimaitis. Stahlecker's report did not supply his first name.
^ Baltic News
^ a b c Voren, Robert van (2011). Undigested Past:
The Holocaust in
Lithuania. On the Boundary of Two Worlds: Identity, Freedom, and Moral
Imagination in the Baltics. Rodopi. p. 78.
^ a b Bubnys, Arūnas (1997). "Vokiečių ir lietuvių saugumo
policija (1941–1944) (German and Lithuanian security police:
1941–1944)". Genocidas ir rezistencija (in Lithuanian). I.
ISSN 1392-3463. Retrieved 2006-06-09.
^ a b c Gitelman, Zvi (1998). Bitter Legacy: Confronting the Holocaust
in the USSR. Indiana University Press. pp. 97, 102.
^ "The Einsatzgruppen: Report by
Einsatzgruppe A in the Baltic
Countries (October 15, 1941)". Jewish Virtual Library.
American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise. Retrieved 2008-08-06.
^ Milkeraitis, Kęstutis (2007-12-05). "Vestuvių generolai ir
Lietuvos saugumas". XXI amžius (in Lithuanian). 90 (1587).
The Holocaust in Lithuania
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See also: Songs of the Vilna Ghetto
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Lithuanian Security Police
Fareinigte Partizaner Organizacje
Kaunas June 1941
Kaunas 29 October 1941
Ninth Fort November 1941
HKP 562 forced labor camp
Kailis forced labor camp
Occupation of Lithuania by Nazi Germany
History of the