NSB absent from WWII exhibition / News / The Foreigner

NSB absent from WWII exhibition. Norway’s Norwegian state railway did not attend the event at the Norwegian railway museum with information on their dealings with the Nazis. The exhibition, which was inaugurated today, occurs in the year commemorating both the 9th April 1940 invasion of Norway and the Scandinavian country’s liberation on 8th May 1945. It shows the lesser-known aspects of the railway's role as the country's main carrier, as well as the illicit work many of its employees carried out to assist refugees to get to Sweden, regarding intelligence work, and sabotage.

wwii, holocaust, jews, nazis, invasion, nsb



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NSB absent from WWII exhibition

Published on Friday, 8th May, 2015 at 15:53 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

Norway’s Norwegian state railway did not attend the event at the Norwegian railway museum with information on their dealings with the Nazis.

The Norwegian Railway Museum, Hamar
The Norwegian Railway Museum, Hamar
Photo: Cato Edvardsen/Wikimedia Commons


The exhibition, which was inaugurated today, occurs in the year commemorating both the 9th April 1940 invasion of Norway and the Scandinavian country’s liberation on 8th May 1945.

It shows the lesser-known aspects of the railway's role as the country's main carrier, as well as the illicit work many of its employees carried out to assist refugees to get to Sweden, regarding intelligence work, and sabotage.

The exhibition also cover’s NSB’s role helping the Germans during WWII. The trains transported foreign POWs to Norway’s Nordlandsbanen, as well as other equipment.

Political prisoners, which included railway workers who had been arrested, were transported by train for interrogation and torture.

NSB’s train wagons were also used to transport Jews from around the country to Oslo harbour, most of them in sealed wagons with armed guards – people the Norwegian police had rounded up for the Nazis.

532 Norwegian Jews were taken to their deaths to Stettin and Auschwitz on the Germans’ SS Donau in November 1942. Just nine returned to Norway after the Second World War.

“Last living survivor”                            

Norway’s last Jew who survived Auschwitz, Samuel Leon ‘Sammy’ Steinmann, was one of those aboard the ship. He passed away last Samuel Steinmann (1924-2015)
Samuel Steinmann (1924-2015)
Jens Brun-Pedersen/Wikimedia Commons
Friday, aged 91. His passing occurred just one week before today’s 70th anniversary of the liberation of Norway.

Among those who attended his state funeral, Wednesday, at Oslo’s Helsfyr Gravlund, were HM King Harald V of Norway, President of the Parliament Olemic Thommessen, Prime Minister Erna Solberg, and Jewish community in Oslo spokesperson Ervind Kohn.

President of Israel Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin sent a letter of condolence to HRH King Harald V prior to this.

“I was saddened to learn of the passing of Samuel Steinmann, the last living survivor of the deportation from Oslo to Poland on the SS Donau,” President Rivlin wrote.

“Steinmann, who personally experienced the horrors of the Holocaust, was one of those very few who survived to give living witness to the greatest Jewish tragedy of all times.”

Prior engagement

The Norwegian police and NSB have issued apologies for their part during WWII. Management who worked at the company in the Second World War allowed the Germans to use their knowledge of the railways and materials.

Norwegian Railway Museum exhibition
Norwegian Railway Museum exhibition
Norwegian Railway Museum/Facebook
They also contributed in ways that allowed the transport of troops and weapons to proceed according to the Germans’ plans.

Many of these senior employees were subsequently highly decorated with Norwegian honours for their efforts.

“The persecution and deportation of Jews is clearly a dark chapter in Norwegian history. NSB's participation in this story is extremely regrettable,” the company’s Åge-Christoffer Lundeby has told Dagsavisen.

NSB chose not to attend today’s inauguration of the exhibition in Hedmark County’s Hamar, however.

Why did NSB not go to the exhibition’s inauguration today?

“Our president is on a journey on business to Vienna. I was meant to go to Hamar today, but had to cancel the trip for a meeting that it’s very important I attend,” says Mr Lundeby to The Foreigner.

Exhibition “Mørke Spor, jernbanen og 2. verdenskrig” at the Norwegian Railway Museum in Hamar is open to the public daily from 6th June to 31st August this year.

While viewing times are by appointment from then until 2016, the exhibition will re-open for the summer of next year.



Published on Friday, 8th May, 2015 at 15:53 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

This post has the following tags: wwii, holocaust, jews, nazis, invasion, nsb.





  
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