Søren Kam 1945
2 November 1921 |
|Years of service||1941–1945|
|Unit||5th SS Panzergrenadier Division Wiking|
|Awards||Close Combat Badge
Infantry Assault Badge
Iron Cross 2nd & 1st class
Wound Badge (silver)
SS-Obersturmführer Søren Kam (born 2 November 1921) is a former Danish Waffen-SS officer, an SS-foreign volunteer, who served with the 5.SS-Panzergrenadier-Division Wiking during World War II rising to the rank of Obersturmfuhrer (First Lieutenant). Born in Copenhagen, he was a member of the DNSAP, the Danish Nazi Party. Also during World War II, he was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, which was awarded to recognize extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership by Nazi Germany during World War II. He obtained West German citizenship in 1956. He is on the Simon Wiesenthal Center's list of most wanted Nazi war criminals.
Alleged war crimes
On 21 September 2006 the 85-year-old ex-member of the SS was detained in Kempten, Bavaria in accordance with a European arrest warrant issued by Denmark. Kam is wanted in his native country in connection with the murder of newspaper editor Carl Henrik Clemmensen in Lyngby, a suburb of Copenhagen during World War II. In 1946, a Danish court sentenced one of Kam's associates, Flemming Helweg-Larsen, to death in the same case and citing the same evidence material. Helweg-Larsen was executed the same year. According to the evidence presented in the 1946 trial, Clemmensen had been killed by eight bullets fired from three different revolvers. Danish police were unable to apprehend Jørgen Valdemar Bitsch, identified in the 1946 trial as the third person involved in the shooting, and his whereabouts remain unknown.
In 1999, Danish Minister of Justice Frank Jensen requested an extradition of Kam. This was refused by Germany. This request was later repeated by Jensen's successor Lene Espersen. In 2004, one of Clemmensen's grandchildren, Danish actor Søren Fauli, interviewed Kam in a documentary about the killing, titled Min morfars morder (My grandfather's murderer). In this programme, Fauli forgives Kam, but asks him to admit his guilt. The documentary was aired on Danish television in 2004 and 2005.
On 4 February 2007, Germany denied his extradition to Denmark, after a German court claimed that the killing of Clemmensen was not murder but manslaughter — thus falling under the statute of limitations which had expired. Kam has stated that he admits having taken part in the abduction and killing of Clemmensen, but that he considers the case to be under the statute of limitations and the killing an accident.
In February 2008, BBC World Service presented a radio program titled The Danish Nazi  which listed Kam as "the eighth most wanted Nazi War Criminal." The reporter was able to contact Kam, giving the only recorded interview with him, including a statement by Kam in which he says in English, "I am a good man, I never did anything wrong."
According to the Daily Telegraph, while in Germany, Kam "has regularly attended veterans' rallies of SS men. He has also been closely associated with Heinrich Himmler's daughter Gudrun Burwitz and her network Stille Hilfe (Silent Aid), set up to support arrested, condemned or fugitive former SS men."
Summary of SS career
Dates of rank
- SS-Sturmmann: 2 September 1941
- SS-Rottenführer: 30 November 1941
- SS-Unterscharführer: 20 April 1942
- SS-Junker: 1 May 1942
- SS-Standartenjunker: 1 September 1942
- SS-Standartenoberjunker: 20 December 1942
- SS-Untersturmführer: 30 January 1943
- SS-Obersturmführer: 7 February 1945
- Close Combat Clasp in Bronze (1944) and in Silver (1945)
- Infantry Assault Badge in Silver (?)
- Iron Cross Second (1941) and First (1944) Classes
- Wound Badge in Black (?) and Silver (1944)
- Knight's Cross (1945)
- dok forside - dr.dk/Dokumentar
- Min morfars morder - ON-Z.dk - hele Danmarks filmsite
- "Most Wanted Nazis", Bridget Johnson, About.com
- The Danish Nazi The program is also available for download in MP3 format.
- Former SS officer sheltering in Germany, Daily Telegraph, 29 November 2007
- Additional information on his alleged war crimes
- Youtube.com segment about Kam