Sunday, August 19, 2012

Memories, and "Framing" - Pius XII

1. Clerical Whispers reported on 96 year old Cardinal Fiorenzo Angelini's memories of Pius XII during the war years.  It is a very short article.  Does it add to the historical record?  No.  It is a "human interest" story focused on the cardinal's memory of Pius' presence in a Roman suburb after an air raid.  It could by San Lorenzo, but there are no details given.  Fr Z's blog contains a little more information on the same story but nothing that adds to the record.  Both Clerical Whispers and Fr Z sourced their story from the Catholic News Agency that ran the story on 2 August 2012.

2.  The big news on Pius XII is the resurfacing of the story that the pope was the subject of a KGB inspired "framing".  I have commented on this before in March and November last year.  The National Catholic Register's article re-tells the story of Ion Mihai Pacepa a former Romanian secret policeman who alleges that the Soviet secret police orchestrated a smear campaign against Pius XII that has become known as the "Black Legend".  The former general wants to present his work to Professor Dan Michman at Yad Vashem in order to present his case.  Part one is linked above and part two can be found here.

In the last article on the Pacepa claims long-time apologist for Pius XII, Ronald Rychlak has written how he moved from scepticism to believing the "framing" campaign. I will leave it to the reader to make up their own mind. 

It is curious to note that no major news service has taken up the story.  It is also worth remembering that Pacepa's story was seriously debunked several years ago by Professor Thomas Brechenmacher of Potsdam University, a Holocaust and Pius XII expert with a significant published record in the field.

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