Salaspils Concentration Camp Memorial


“The earth moans beyond this gate’

These are the words inscribed on the face of the massive concrete structure  which serves as the gateway to the former Salaspils (Kurtenhof) concentration camp. Continue reading “Salaspils Concentration Camp Memorial”

Monument to Zanis Lipke and All the Saviours of Latvian Jews


Within four months of the Nazis occupying Riga on 1 July 1941, a Jewish ghetto had been set up in the Moscow District of the city. 30,000 Jews where forcibly moved into the ghetto. Within weeks, 24,000 of its occupants were forced marched to Rumbula forest on the outskirts of the city and shot. Thousands more were shot or otherwise eliminated within the city. Throughout Latvia, between 1941 and 1945 70,000 Jews were killed by or under Nazi direction. Continue reading “Monument to Zanis Lipke and All the Saviours of Latvian Jews”

Take a Walk in the Moscow District


One of my fondest memories of Riga is the half day or so we spent wandering around the Moscow District (Maskavas forštate), also (or rather officially) called Latgale, and in so doing discovering one of the lesser-explored parts of Riga. The Moscow District, Riga’s first suburb outside the walled Old City, dates back to the 14th century though nothing of the medieval period remains to be seen to-day. Continue reading “Take a Walk in the Moscow District”

Museum of the Occupation of Latvia (1940 -1991)


Thankfully most of us have not lived in situations where we have been oppressed for most of our lives. We have not had our freedom taken away by tyrannical regimes, been incarcerated or exiled for crimes we did not commit, lost our loved ones without trace, been persecuted for our religious convictions or lost everything with no recompense. Continue reading “Museum of the Occupation of Latvia (1940 -1991)”