Jacob Christensen

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The Danish Nazi

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Søren Kam is, if not a household name, then an infamous person in Denmark. A volunteer in the German army during WW2, he co-founded the Schallburg Corps (Article in the Danish Wikipedia) which carried out a number of attacks against members of the Danish resistance and more general attacks, including an attack against Tivoli gardens in Copenhagen, as revenge against attacks against factories, railways and the like by Danish resistance fighters.

Kam’s real claim to infamy has been the murder of newspaper editor Carl Henrik Clemmesen in 1943, which some years ago became the subject of a documentary by Clemmesen’s grandson Søren Fauli who managed to track down Kam.

After the end of WW2, Kam managed to escape from Denmark, settled in Germany (or the be more precise: Bavaria) and gained German citizenship in 1956. The failure by German authorities to prosecute Kam for Clemmesen’s murder has been an occasional annoyance in Danish-German relations ever since. As Kam was a German citizen, Germany has not wanted to extradite him, and while the common EU arrest order should have opened the possibility of an extradition of Kam to Denmark, a Bavarian court – apparently basing its decision only on Kam’s own version of the murder – decided that he could only be charged with manslaughter and as such not be extradited to Denmark.

One particular twist to the tale is that the Danish People’s Party (which is otherwise very EU-sceptic) has made several initiatives in the Clemmesen/Kam case, criticising successive Danish Justice Ministers for not taking sufficient action against German authorities and forcing the extradition of Kam.

In any event, BBC Word Service has a documentary about Kam – available here (as streaming radio) or here (as a podcast for download). A couple of months ago, Daily Telegraph published an article about Kam and other nazis hiding in Germany.

Written by Jacob Christensen

February 21st, 2008 at 11:25 am

Posted in Politics

Tagged with , ,

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