HERBERTS CUKURS (17 May 1900 in
* 1 Aviation pioneer * 2 Participation in the Nazi Holocaust * 3 Postwar flight and assassination * 4 Attempts at rehabilitation * 5 Notes * 6 References * 7 External links
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As a pioneering long-distance pilot, he won national acclaim for his
international solo flights in the 1930s (Latvia-
Cukurs built at least three aircraft of his own design. In 1937 he
made a 45,000-kilometre (24,000 nmi ; 28,000 mi ) tour visiting Japan
He also designed the Cukurs C-6bis prototype dive bomber in 1940.
PARTICIPATION IN THE NAZI HOLOCAUST
During the occupation of
Latvia by Nazi
In his book
The Holocaust in Latvia, 1941-1945, Latvian historian
Andrew Ezergailis writes that Cukurs played a leading role in the
atrocities that were committed in the
According to eyewitness sources, Cukurs was the most recognizable Latvian SD man at the scene of the Rumbula massacre. Ezergailis states that "although Arājs' men were not the only ones on the ghetto end of the operation, to the degree they participated in the atrocities there, the chief responsibility rests on Herberts Cukurs' shoulders." Cukurs was described as follows:
The Latvian murderer Cukurs got out of a car wearing a pistol (Nagant) in a leather holster at his side. He went to the Latvian guards to give them various instructions. He had certainly been informed in detail about the great catastrophe that awaited us.
Later Ezergailis retracted these interpretations, saying that in light of new documents, it would be wrong to claim that Cukurs indeed had participated in the Rumbula shooting or the burning of the Riga synagogue. During interviews with the press, Ezergailis stated that there is no evidence that Cukurs had been at the pits at Rumbula, and that it has not been proven that Cukurs was "the most eager shooter of Jews in Latvia".
According to another account, Cukurs also participated in the Burning
Eyewitnesses heard the people who were locked inside screaming for help and saw them breaking the synagogue's windows from inside and trying, like living torches, to get outside. Cukurs shot them with his revolver.
Time magazine reported at the time of his death in 1965 that his
crimes included the
POSTWAR FLIGHT AND ASSASSINATION
Cukurs had retreated to
After the war, Cukurs emigrated to
He is now known to have been assassinated by
Mossad agents, who
persuaded him to travel to
Taking into consideration the gravity of the charge leveled against
the accused, namely that he personally supervised the killing of more
than 30,000 men, women and children, and considering the extreme
display of cruelty which the subject showed when carrying out his
tasks, the accused
The note was initially dismissed as a prank, but then police were notified and the body was discovered.
ATTEMPTS AT REHABILITATION
Since the fall of Communism, there have been efforts in
rehabilitate Cukurs. For example, an exhibition was held in
The Latvian Foreign Minister Artis Pabriks condemned the issuance of postal envelopes dedicated to Cukurs in 2004. In a statement, Pabriks said that "those who produced such envelopes in Latvia evidently do not understand the tragic history of World War II in Latvia or in Europe". The foreign ministry stated that Cukurs was "guilty of war crimes", and that he "took part in the activities of the notorious Arajs Kommando, which participated in the Holocaust and was responsible for the killing of innocent civilians. The General Prosecutor's Office of Latvia has twice rejected the exoneration of Herberts Cukurs".
* ^ A B MONTERO, MIGUEL ÁLVAREZ. "Medio siglo de dos historias de
sangre que conmovieron al país". El País. El País. Retrieved 1
* ^ A B Kaufmann, The Destruction of the Latvian Jews, at 81
* ^ Aderet, Ofer (1 July 2012). "
Mossad agent who helped abduct
Eichmann dies at 93". Haaretz. Retrieved 2 December 2012.
(registration required )
* ^ Press, The Murder of the Jews of Latvia, at pages 69 to 70.
* ^ Künzle and Shimron, The Execution of the Hangman of Riga, at
* ^ Lumans,
Latvia in World War II, at page 240.
* ^ Eksteins, Walking Since Daybreak, at page 150.
* ^ Michelson, Max, City of Life, City of Death, at 103.
* ^ Operation Last Chance: One Man's Quest to Bring Nazi Criminals
to Justice, by Efraim Zuroff, Macmillan, Nov 10, 2009 p. 117
* ^ "Cukurs C-6bis". Airwar.ru. Retrieved 2012-04-28.
* ^ Ezergailis, Andrievs (1999). Holokausts vācu okupētajā
Latvijā 1941–1944 (in Latvian). Riga: Latvijas vēstures institūta
apgāds. pp. 222, 230. ISBN 9984-601-02-1 .
OCLC 44502624 . Also
available in English as: Andrew Ezergailis,
The Holocaust in Latvia,
1941–1944: The Missing Center (1996), ISBN 9984-9054-3-8 .
* ^ Ezergailis,
The Holocaust in Latvia, at pages 192 and 267, n.55
* ^ Ezergails, Andrievs. Jāmeklē patiesība par Herbertu Cukuru.
* ^ Jerusalem Post: The Mass Murderer As Hero
* ^ The Murder of the Jews in Latvia, at page 46
* ^ A B C D E "Uruguay: Man in the Icebox". Time . March 19, 1965.
Retrieved 3 December 2010. (subscription required)
* ^ Visa number 42575 issued by Brazilian Consulate in Marseilles
* Angrick, Angrej, and Klein, Peter, The "Final Solution" in Riga:
Exploitation and Annihilation, 1941-1944, Berghahn Books, 2009 ISBN
978-1-84545-608-5 ; originally published as (in German) Die
„Endlösung“ in Riga., Darmstadt 2006, ISBN 3-534-19149-8
* Ezergailis, Andrew ,
The Holocaust in
Missing Center, Historical Institute of
Latvia (in association with
the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum)
* t * e
Main article The Holocaust Related articles by country Belarus Estonia Lithuania Norway Poland Russia Ukraine
* Fritz Dietrich
NAZI OCCUPATION AND ORGANIZATIONS
GHETTOS AND CAMPS
WAR CRIMES INVESTIGATIONS AND TRIALS
* Einsatzgruppen trial * Extraordinary (Soviet) State Commission
RIGHTEOUS AMONG THE NATIONS
* Jānis Lipke * Roberts Sedols
* v * t * e
Post-war flight of Axis fugitives
GERMAN / AUSTRIAN
Ludolf von Alvensleben
* Viktors Arājs * Herberts Cukurs
* Tscherim Soobzokov (Circassian)
* Rodolfo Freude *