JERUSALEM — A new report by a prominent
Nazi-hunting group gave more than a dozen countries,
including Hungary, Ukraine and Canada, low grades
for bringing suspected Holocaust-era war criminals
The Simon Wiesenthal Center gave top marks to
Germany — the first time any country besides the US
has been given an "A'' grade for prosecuting
suspected Nazi war criminals.
The Associated Press on Wednesday received an
advance copy of the center's report, which covers
the period between April 2009 and March 2010. The
formal release is scheduled for Thursday.
The director of the Weisenthal Center's Israel
office, Efraim Zuroff, said Hungary received a
failing grade for not imprisoning Dr. Sandor Kepiro,
a Hungarian military officer convicted in 1944 in
the mass murder of civilians.
Canada's efforts "a terrible failure" for not
extraditing former Nazis even after stripping them
The center gave a failing grade to Ukraine, saying
it "has to the best of our knowledge never conducted
a single investigation of a local Nazi war criminal,
let alone prosecuted a Holocaust perpetrator."
But in a related development Wednesday, Ukraine
rescinded the National Hero of Ukraine award given
to Stepan Bandera, a nationalist partisan whose
group briefly fought for the Nazis.
In all, nine countries received failing grades from
the center and five received "Ds."
Zuroff noted that, counter-intuitively, perhaps, the
number of new state-launched investigations has
risen in recent years, even though 65 years have
passed since the end of World War II.
A total of 456 new cases were opened in the period
covered by the recent report, compared with 315 the
year before and only 63 in 2006-2007.
Germany received its top mark for convicting, in
2009 and 2010, the first two Nazi war criminals
"People assume because of the age of the defendants
that nothing will actually happen," Zuroff said, but
"passage of time does not diminish the crimes of the