Controversial History

Historical events are rarely viewed in the same way by different nations and individuals. Through the stories of the three main characters, the film attempts to find out how the collective memory is formed and why the memories of WW II events diverge in a small country Latvia, which lost most of its Jewish population after WW II. A surviving Jew Edward Anders, a member of the US National Academy of Sciences currently residing in Burlingame, CA, returns to his home town to commemorate the tragic events for the Jewish community caused by the Soviet and Nazi occupations. His recollections reveal lesser known facts concerning the different fates of Jewish people before and during the Holocaust living among Latvians. His insightful interpretation of the historical events is scientifically unbiased and empathic to 'others'. Anders advocates understanding and peace between nations of various ethnicities despite the different past experiences believing that the crimes are not committed by nations but by individuals. Different but emotionally deep are the stories of the Latvian who witnessed and experienced the atrocities of the Soviet regime and the Belorussian who was deported to Latvia as a German prisoner of war. The subject of the documentary Controversial History is very essential for today's society not only in Latvia, but worldwide as ethnic conflicts, racism and distorted information on few controversial historical points still exist.

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