Righteous Among the Nations



PLU saw a number of prestigious speaker last week as part of the Wang Center symposium on the Holocaust and genocide. The symposium, called “Legacies of the Shoah,” discussed a variety topics from Native American relations to post-holocaust anti-Semitism.

These topics not only focused on the suffering of the Jewish population at the hands of the National Socialist, but German dissenters who attempted to subvert the genocide such as Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

Israel also commemorates non-Jewish individuals who assisted the Jewish population during the Shoah with an honor titled “Righteous Among the Nations.” Individuals who receive this honor also become honorary citizens of Israel. A total of 24,811 have become Righteous Among the Nations, approximately 130 of which have settled in Israel.

Any individual must meet several criteria to become Righteous Among the Nations:

Must be nominated by a Jewish individual or party.
Helping a Jewish family member does not qualify someone for the honor.
The help given must be continual or significant.
The help cannot be given with the expectation of financial benefit.

As more information regarding the Holocaust is uncovered, more individuals enter the ranks of the Righteous Among the Nations.

In 2013, Dr. Mohamed Helmy became the first Egyptian to be Righteous Among the Nations. Helmy saved the life of a young Jewish woman, Anna Boros Gutman, by hiding her in his rural cabin.

“The Gestapo knew that Dr. Helmy was our family physician, and they knew that he owned a cabin in Berlin-Buch. He managed to evade all their interrogations” Gutman wrote, “He would bring me to friends where I would stay for several days, introducing me as his cousin from Dresden. When the danger would pass, I would return to his cabin.”

Helmy passed away in Berlin in 1982.

Source: Israel Times

Categories: Nation & World

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