Righteous Among Nations: Honoring the Memory of Chiune Sugihara

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Community Event

Oct 200925
1:00p.m. - 5:00p.m.

Congregation Beth David
19700 Prospect Rd
Saratoga, California
United States

Forty-five years after the Soviet invasion of Lithuania, he was asked his reasons for issuing visas to the Jews. Sugihara explained that the refugees were human beings, and that they simply needed help. As Sugihara stated in a conversation with a visitor to his home near Tokyo Bay that year:

“You want to know about my motivation, don't you? Well. It is the kind of sentiments anyone would have when he actually sees refugees face to face, begging with tears in their eyes. He cannot just help but sympathize with them. Among the refugees were the elderly and women. They were so desperate that they went so far as to kiss my shoes, Yes, I actually witnessed such scenes with my own eyes. Also, I felt at that time, that the Japanese government did not have any uniform opinion in Tokyo. Some Japanese military leaders were just scared because of the pressure from the Nazis; while other officials in the Home Ministry were simply ambivalent. 

People in Tokyo were not united. I felt it silly to deal with them. So, I made up my mind not to wait for their reply. I knew that somebody would surely complain about me in the future. But, I myself thought this would be the right thing to do. There is nothing wrong in saving many people's lives....The spirit of humanity, philanthropy...neighborly friendship...with this spirit, I ventured to do what I did, confronting this most difficult situation---and because of this reason, I went ahead with redoubled courage."

Hosted by the Japanese American Museum of San Jose.

 

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vkm . Última actualización Jul 09 2010 12:13 p.m.


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