DRESDEN: DESTRUCTION, RENEWAL AND POST-WAR RECONCILIATION, January 2020
A talk by Marcus Ferrar, Chairman, The Dresden Trust, www.dresdentrust.org
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HOW THE SWISS IMPLEMENT A CONTROVERSIAL REFERENDUM – Salisbury Review, May 2017
How democratic is a referendum?
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IS FREEDOM WORTH FIGHTING FOR?
Salisbury Review, December 2016
Should we embrace freedom, or curb it to keep safe?
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TWENTIETH-CENTURY GERMAN HISTORY REVISITED: HISTORIOGRAPHY AND PERSONAL EXPERIENCE FROM AN ANGLO-GERMAN PERSPECTIVE
A talk given by Marcus Ferrar to the German Historical Institute, London
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TAKING 60 YEARS TO SAY SORRY
I first visited the place 30 years ago and thought, “So what? Who started it anyway?” Today however, I wrote in the Visitors’ Book in the church: “This should never have happened. I am sorry.” full article
SO WHERE’S THE SOLIDARITY?
So why don’t we all talk about it? What do you mean, what is it? That’s the point. We all know what it is. We’ve been worrying about it for weeks. We feel threatened, uncomfortable, undermined, doubtful of our own judgment. full article
TIME TO SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT WITH SLOVENIA
The Queen’s forthcoming visit to Slovenia is an opportunity to set the record straight towards a friendly country that bravely freed itself from oppression in 1991 and is a NATO ally as well as a recent President of the European Union. full article
SLOVENIA 1945: Death and Survival After World War II
Delo, Slovenia, 9 May 2006
Several weeks after World War II finished, Slovenes and other Yugoslavs slaughtered one per cent of the Slovene nation in cold blood. These were the domobranci, whom the British sent back disarmed from Austria to be killed by Partisans who had become the new armed forces of post-war Yugoslavia. How does any nation, in particular one which has recently achieved independence, deal with such a dark cloud over its history? More than 60 years later, Slovenes give diametrically opposed answers to this question – or else repress the issue as too painful. There is no unanimity, and that leaves a big gap in this nation’s collective historical memory.
Slovenia has democracy and a market economy, and complies exemplarily with the practical obligations of its membership of the European Union. However the failure to confront the conflicts of its past means it lags behind in one of the European Union’s other important functions – achieving post-World War II reconciliation. full article
Sorry about your Dad: a gesture Britain owes to the Slovenes
When Tony Blair welcomed Slovene Prime Minister Janez Janša at Downing Street in December, seeking support for Britain’s EU budget policies, it would have been awkward if he had asked the Slovene how his family was.
The truth is that Janša’s father has for 60 years been feeling bitter about the British. In May 1945, the British Army in Austria tricked this teenage soldier into climbing aboard a train, and sent him back with 12,000 others to Slovenia (then Yugoslavia). Janša senior was one of a handful who escaped execution on his return because he was too young. The avenging Partisans, to whom the British delivered their enemies, disarmed and locked into cattle trucks, slaughtered all the rest. In this blackest moment of Slovenia’s history, one per cent of the nation was put to death. full article
Without the imaginative insight which goes with creative literature, history cannot be intelligibly written – C. V. Wedgwood
Honest history is the weapon of freedom – A.M. Schlesinger, Jr.