Friday, October 28, 2005

Sleeping with the Enemy

After 60 years of shame, misery and discrimination the Norwegian government has decided to officially forgive the 14,000 women described as “German Whores”. These were the women who at the end of the war where arrested for fraternising with the German army and for giving birth to their children. The Nazis who occupied Norway for 5 years actively encouraged their soldiers to have affairs with local women, part of the SS plan to enrich the “Aryan” gene pool. At the end of the war the "tysketöser" where denounced as traitors by the puppet government of Vidkun Quisling and many were sent to labour camps.

It is estimated that over 12,000 children were born from these liaisons. They were separated from their mothers and suffered unbelievable abuse in homes and lunatic asylums. There mistreatment was justified by the authorities because they where considered to be a danger to the state and are still considered a threat.

One of the most well-known "tyskerunge," or "German brat", is Anni-Frid Lyngstad, the brunette singer from the 1970s group, Abba. Her mother, Synni, had an affair with a German soldier and fled to her native Sweden when they were ostracised in their village in northern Norway. Synni died in the late 1940s and her daughter eventually met her German father when she was in her 30s.

After the war the Norwegian government paid a war pension to all citizens who remained true to "good national principles" during the Nazi occupation. The "tysketöser" were excluded until now. The Norwegian government has decided to pay the dozen or so remaining women their belated pension, which will not be backdated. A group of the “war children” have been fighting for the justice and compensation in the “European Court of Human Rights”. One of the children, now 63, explained how when she was 10 the local villagers branded her with a swastika on her forehead.

Other links: Unique Quisling interview found

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