The trouble with double genocide

January 12, 2011

A recent decision by the European Union has evoked the ghosts of horrors past. Last month, the European Commission rejected calls by countries in Eastern Europe to criminalize the denial of crimes perpetrated not only by Nazi but also Communist regimes, reviving a highly contentious debate over whether Soviet atrocities can be equated to the Holocaust. Lithuania, Latvia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and the Czech Republic argued that Soviet crimes “should be treated according to the same standards” as the Holocaust. But due to a lack of consensus, the proposal was rejected, though it remains under review.