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At a press conference last January, the spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry accused Canada of having been “a refuge for Nazi criminals”. /p>

Winnipeg Art Gallery caught in Russian propaganda

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Maria Zakharova is the spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry.

  • Corentin Mittet-Magnan (View profile)Corentin Mittet-Magnan

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After the revelations on The adherence of Ferdinand Eckhardt, former director of the Winnipeg Art Gallery, to Nazi ideology before his arrival in Manitoba in 1953, Russia used this affair for propaganda purposes to attack Canada and criticize its “shameful reputation for refuge for Nazi criminals.”

Last November, a journalistic investigation by the magazine The Walrus revealed, with supporting documents, the way in which Ferdinand Eckhardt, director of the Museum of fine arts in Winnipeg between 1953 and 1974, had expressed his support for the ideas of the Nazi regime before settling in Manitoba in 1953. Born in Vienna in 1902, he was enlisted in the German army between 1942 and 1944, according to The Walrus.

He notably signed an oath of allegiance to Hitler and signed several articles in pro-Nazi newspapers.

Eckhardt worked for one of the most notorious players in Hitler's war machine, IG Farben, the same company that built the Auschwitz concentration camp and manufactured Zyklon B, used in the gas chambers, recounts Conrad Sweatman in his investigation published in The Walrus.

These revelations reached the ears of the Kremlin. On January 31, Maria Zakharova, spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, used information from the magazine to accuse Canada of being a refuge for Nazi criminals.

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