Skip to content
Accueil » Archives pour January 2011

January 2011

Hemliga sidor av Raoul Wallenbergs uppdrag.

    Den 4 augusti fyller Raoul Wallenberg 99 år och nästa år är det således 100 år sedan han föddes. Detta kommer att uppmärksammas både i Sverige och i andra länder. Samtidigt kommer efter en viss paus åter ett flertal böcker om denne man, som med fog kan kallas en av Sveriges få hjältar. Vissa av de nyare böckerna försöker nyansera bilden av Wallenberg och ibland till och med påstå att han inte var så betydelsefull som myten gjort gällande och sysslade även med privata affärer. Därmed finns möjlighetens till historisk debatt kring en person som fortfarande omges av en viss mystik. De allra senaste årens forskning i arkiv i Ungern har dock pekat åt ett annat håll- att han förvisso hade andra uppdrag än det humanitära, men att det knappast var privata affärer utan kontakter med den anti-nazistiska motståndsrörelsen och troligen också allierad underrättelsetjänst!

    Some Things Are Worth Fighting For

      It has now been ten years since a joint Swedish-Russian Working Group presented its report on the fate of Raoul Wallenberg in the Soviet Union following his arrest by Russian troops in Budapest in January 1945, a few months before the end of  World War II.  In spite of the Working Group’s efforts, the full facts of Wallenberg’s fate remain unknown.

      Not surprisingly, relatively little  progress has been made  since the case moved from an official investigation to a  subject of historical inquiry. Although researchers have produced  quite a few  new insights,  without strong official Swedish support there is no way to effectively pressure Russian authorities to present the key files necessary to answer the remaining questions. In other words, we know crucial documentation is available, but we are not allowed to see it, nor do we get adequate help to obtain access to it.

      Nevertheless, there have been some important breakthroughs since 2001. We do know now without a shadow of a doubt that Russian officials intentionally withheld information from documentation presented to the Working Group as early a 1991,  when the group began its work. The documents were censored not primarily out of concern for Russian secrecy  and privacy laws (that issue could have been easily circumvented), but clearly to prevent Swedish officials from learning information that would have led them to question the longtime Soviet version of Raoul Wallenberg’s fate, namely that he died of a heart attack on July 17, 1947 in Lubyanka prison. The censored material – which remains secret to this day – would have shown that with great likelihood Wallenberg was interrogated by Soviet Security officials six days later, on July 23, 1947. If such information had been received in 1991, it might have set the whole inquiry of the Working Group on a different path.

      The actions of the Swedish side also leave a few question marks. For example, in 1997 Russian officials  informed the Working Group that Russian Foreign Ministry archives contain a number of secret coded telegrams which make direct reference to Raoul Wallenberg, although the Russians claim they  include no information about his fate. For that reason, Swedish officials agreed not to insist on a review of the documentation, even though the material may have proved valuable for our inquiries in other ways. Fourteen years later, the cables still have not been released. The same is true for a wide range of investigative files  and other documentation from Russian intelligence archives that have remained completely inaccessible to researchers.