Extraordinary State Commission

Extraordinary State Commission

The Extraordinary State Commission - fully: „Soviet State Extraordinary Commission for Ascertaining and Investigating the Crimes Committed by the German-Fascist Invaders and Their Accomplices.“ (Чрезвычайная Государственная Комиссия - TschGK), was a commission formed by the Soviet authorities, officially aiming at "investigating and punishing for the Crimes of the German-Fascist Aggressors" and their allies. The commission was established on 2 November 1942, by a Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet. The commission had the responsibility to investigate the Nazi war crimes and collect materials which would confirm crimes and losses caused by the invaders. According to its own data, 32,000 organization men took part in the work of ChGK and around 7,000,000 Soviet citizens had participated the collection of materials and evidence.

The 27 reports of the ChGK were the lion's share of Soviet evidentiary material in Nuremberg process and the Japanese war criminals' process.

Members of the Commission

Controversial communiquées

Some of the reports prepared by the commission are now considered falsifications. Particularly:

The first report of the commission was published on August 24 1944 with the title „Finland demasked“. This report claimed that Finland had put the whole 'Soviet' population of the occupied territories into Concentration camps, where 40% had dies, according to commission's the data

On 24 January 1944, communiquée about Katyn massacre was published: "The Truth about Katyn". This lengthy document affirmed with "irrefutable clarity", that the mass shootings of the Polish prisoners had been done buy the Germans. (See: Katyn_massacre#Actions taken by the Soviet Union) The Soviet pathologists were of course said to have found numerous 'proofs', that the crime was committed by the Germans: pathologists who examined the bodies in 1943 - so the report goes - concluded that they could not have been dead longer than two years. Furthermore, documents were found on some of the bodies which had obviously been missed by the Germans when they doctored the evidence. These included a letter dated September 1940, a postcard dated 12 November 1940, a pawn ticket receipted 14 March 1941 and another receipted 25 March 1941. Receipts dated 6 April 1941, 5 May 1941, 15 May 1941 and an unmailed postcard in Polish dated 20 June 1941. Although all these dates pre-date Soviet withdrawal, they all postdate the time of the alleged murder of the prisoners by the Soviet authorities in the spring of 1940 etc.

References

Literature

  • Alexander E. Epifanow: Die Außerordentliche Staatliche Kommission. Stöcker, Wien 1997.
  • Stefan Karner: Zum Umgang mit der historischen Wahrheit in der Sowjetunion. Die "Außerordentliche Staatliche Kommission" 1942 bis 1951. In: W. Wadl (Hg.): Kärntner Landesgeschichte und Archivwissenschaft. Festschrift für Alfred Ogris. Klagenfurt 2001, Seite 508-523.
  • Marina Sorokina, People and Procedures. Toward a History of the Investigation of Nazi Crimes in the USSR. In: Kritika. Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 6, 4 (Fall 2005), 797 - 831.
  • Joachim Hoffmann, Stalins Vernichtungskrieg 1941-1945. Ch.8 Sowjetischen Untaten werden den Deutschen zugeschrieben.

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