Wiesenthal Center asks Grass for full disclosure

22nd August 2006, Comments 0 comments

22 August 2006, JERUSALEM - The anti-Semitism watchdog group the Simon Wiesenthal Center called Tuesday on German Nobel Laureate Guenter Grass to make public all pertinent details regarding his service in the Waffen-SS, and to grant researchers from the Center access to all documents concerning his World War II past. In a letter sent to Grass Tuesday, Dr. Efraim Zuroff of the Center's Jerusalem office asked the author to clarify contradictory details which have appeared in the media following his revelatio

22 August 2006

JERUSALEM - The anti-Semitism watchdog group the Simon Wiesenthal Center called Tuesday on German Nobel Laureate Guenter Grass to make public all pertinent details regarding his service in the Waffen-SS, and to grant researchers from the Center access to all documents concerning his World War II past.

In a letter sent to Grass Tuesday, Dr. Efraim Zuroff of the Center's Jerusalem office asked the author to clarify contradictory details which have appeared in the media following his revelation earlier this month that he had served in the infamous Waffen SS during the closing year of World War II.

Zuroff also asked Grass to give permission to Wiesenthal Center researchers to examine his personal documents in various German archives, to which access is not granted without the subject's permission.

"Given Grass' moral stature in Germany and throughout the world as a symbol of those calling for an honest confrontation with his country's Nazi past, it is imperative that he tell the whole truth about his service in the Waffen SS and allow access to his wartime documents," Zuroff said.

"To do otherwise would be precisely the kind of dishonest behaviour which Grass himself has criticised for decades," he said.

Grass's admission in his autobiography Peeling the Onion that he spent six months as a 17-year-old with the Waffen SS, the combat arm of the Nazi SS, has caused a storm in Germany and beyond.

DPA

Subject: German news

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