Crown Princess Victoria Asked About Family Past At Auschwitz Memorial
While attending the official commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz in Poland yesterday, Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria was asked a question which has led to public outcry.
“Has the Crown Princess considered the family history?” asked SVT reporter Rolf Fredriksson, before clarifying the double-sided aspect of the question, “There were relatives further back who were sympathetic to the Nazis and then there was Folke Bernadotte who, with the white buses, saved people from the concentration camps.”
The reporter was referring to the Crown Princess’s maternal grandfather, Walther Sommerlath, who joined the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (Nazi Party) in 1934 while living in Brazil. Upon his return to Germany in 1939, Sommerlath owned and ran an metal plant that had previously belonged to Jews.
Crown Princess Victoria calmly responded to the question without mention of her family: “Nazism is terrifying. It is one of humanity’s absolute worst periods. There is a long history and we have a lot of information and it is possible to take advantage of it if you wish.”
The outrage over the question, which has been condemned by numerous members of Swedish society, was only amplified by the fact that the Crown Princess was standing beside two elderly survivors of the Holocaust when it was asked.
“It’s disrespectful to the two survivors who stand next [to the Crown Princess] in the freezing cold,” Margareta Thorgren, the press officer of the Royal Court, said to Expressen. “The purpose of the question is questionable. It is completely the wrong time to set it at the Crown Princess, who has gone there to show how important she thinks this ceremony is.”Filed under Sweden
Tagged Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, Holocaust, Media, Public Opinion.