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Diplomat Heroes of the Holocaust

By Mordecai Paldiel

Introduction by Richard Holbrooke and Preface by Arthur Schneier

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From the Introduction by Ambassador Richard Holbrooke.
"We heard, and mocked, the defense of many Germans after World War II; they were just following orders. But the same rationale was used by the majority of non-German diplomats in Europe during the 1930's. For every Wallenberg there were hundreds of consular officials who played it safe or were themselves determined to use their power to keep Jews out of their country. ... Given the risks and costs to those who defied their governments, it is not surprising that there were so few. But every age will present such difficult choices. The details will vary, but the challenge will be similar. As a former Foreign Service Officer, I hope this book will be required reading for all aspiring young diplomats -- so that they can ask themselves, 'What would I have done?' And so that they can be better prepared if they have to face such a challenge in whatever form, during their career."
From the Preface by Rabbi Arthur Schneier.
"Judaism teaches that in every generation there are Thirty Six Righteous Individuals who uphold the world. They represent the finest of humanity, dispensing justice and kindness to all who come their way. This book bears witness to such righteous people. It gives an account of those who spoke up and provided a life-line when much of the world stood by silently as six million Jews perished."
During the Holocaust, thousands of Jews sought to flee from Nazi dominated Europe to safer havens. This book details how diplomats in China, Spain, Portugal, Romania, Switzerland, Brazil, Holland, Turkey, Italy, Yugoslavia, Japan, Germany and the Vatican risked everything - their careers, their reputations, even their lives to save Jews. Laying aside customary diplomatic behavior, they used various unorthodox methods and designs in order to keep the Nazis and their collaborators at arms length. Their diplomatic protection saved tens of thousands of Jews.
Mordecai Paldiel, the director of The Righteous Among the Nations Department, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Institute in Israel, is the author of Churches & the Holocaust: Unholy Teaching, Good Samaritans and Reconciliation and Path of the Righteous Gentile and numerous scholarly articles on the Holocaust.
Rabbi Arthur Schneier is internationally known for his leadership on behalf of religious freedom, human rights and inter-religious dialogue. He is founder and president of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation (1965–) and has been the spiritual leader of New York's Park East Synagogue since1962. Recipient of the US Presidential Citizens Medal he was cited for "his service as an international envoy for four administrations" and as a Holocaust survivor "devoting a lifetime to overcoming forces of hatred and intolerance." Born in Vienna, Rabbi Schneier lived under Nazi occupation in Budapest during World War II and arrived in the United States in 1947.
Ambassador Richard Holbrooke joined the Foreign Service in 1962, and served in Vietnam, Paris, Morocco, and Washington. He was Ambassador to Germany (1993–1994) and to the United Nations (1999–2001) and served as Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia (1977–1981) and Europe (1994–1996). He was chief architect of the Dayton Peace Agreement (1995) that ended the war in Bosnia.

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