“Memorial” Society, Moscow
The “Memorial” Society of Moscow, registered as the “International Society for Historical Enlightenment, Human Rights and Social Welfare”, was founded in Moscow in 1988 as an association of former political inmates and young human rights activists. The nuclear physicist, dissident and Nobel Laureate Andrei Sakharov was its first chairman. Today “Memorial” consists of a network of more than eighty national and regional organizations in countries of the former Soviet Union as well as Poland, Germany, Italy and France. “Memorial” advocates the historical reappraisal of political persecution and the public commemoration of the victims. The society also supports the process of democratization in the former Soviet Union and informs the public about human rights violations. In the area of social welfare, “Memorial” counsels victims of Stalinist repression. The members of the organization carry out research on the history of political persecution and also make their extensive library, archive and collection holdings available for research by others.
Buchenwald and Mittelbau-Dora Memorials Foundation
In the past years, the Buchenwald and Mittelbau-Dora Memorials Foundation has distinguished itself internationally in the scholarly reappraisal and museological presentation of contemporary history. As early as 1997, for example, – following extensive research projects in Russia and Germany – it paid tribute to the thematic complex of Soviet persecution by opening the first museum on the history of a Soviet special camp in the Soviet-occupied zone. This was followed in 1999 by an independent exhibition documenting the exploitation of the history of Buchenwald Concentration Camp in the German Democratic Republic. The foundation has moreover designed several internationally successful travelling exhibitions, among them “Topf & Sons – The Builders of the Auschwitz Ovens” (2005) and “Forced Labor: The Germans, the Forced Laborers and the War” (2010). These exhibitions opened up new perspectives on the crimes committed by the Nazi regime – perspectives which represent important building blocks in the formation of a European culture of remembrance. The foundation is networked with scholarly institutions and contemporary history museums worldwide. It has been cooperating with the “Memorial” Society on research and education work for many years.