Presentation on theme: "Raoul Wallenberg - The Disappearance of a Hero -."— Presentation transcript:
Raoul Wallenberg - The Disappearance of a Hero -
Raoul Wallenberg “One ordinary man can make an extraordinary difference.” In 1944, Raoul Wallenberg was approached by the War Refugee Board, a U.S. Organization, to undergo a rescue operation in war-torn Hungary. He left his life as a member of one of the wealthiest families in Sweden to go to Budapest. Serving as a Swedish Diplomat, he rescued close to 100,000 people during the Holocaust.
January 17th, 2011, marks the 66 th anniversary of Raoul Wallenberg’s disappearance. After saving tens of thousands of Budapest Jews during WWII, Wallenberg went to a meeting with the Soviets to discuss post-war Hungary to never be seen again. Images taken during the IRWF’s campaign to bring Raoul Wallenberg home.
“In the early morning on January 17 th to our surprise, Wallenberg arrived in a car at the Legation Building. He was accompanied by Dr. László Pető and a Russian officer, as well as his regular driver Langfelder. Wallenberg came up on his own, without an escort, to our office on the first floor.” Rezső Müller Wallenberg’s close collaborator
“He said he was in a great hurry because a car was waiting to take him to Debrecen, headquarters of Marshall Malinovsky and the Hungarian Government. He handed over a large amount of money, saying that we should look after the care of the protected Jews, considering that he could not return from his trip to Debrecen any earlier than eight days.” Ödön Gergely Wallenberg’s close collaborator The paintings belong to the series “Raoul Wallenberg,” by Frederick Valle, from the collection of the IRWF..
To this day, it is still not clear what happened to Raoul Wallenberg after the meeting he had with the Soviet authorities. Images taken from the IRWF’s Signature Campaign to bring find out Raoul Wallenberg’s fate.
Many books have been written since about this hero who single handedly rescued more people than any other government, organization, or individual during WWII.
For the Jewish population of war torn Budapest his name signified hope and survivor.
Wallenberg was the man who gave them Swedish protected passes and housing; demanded their liberation in front of firing squads; organized orphanages and hospitals; and did absolutely everything he could to keep them safe. Swedish protective pass, Schutz-Pass.
The IRWF commemorates the anniversary of Wallenberg’s disappearance through the voices of some of the Hungarian Jews who survived thanks to his heroic deeds. Their voices were originally recorded for the IRWF’s “Documenting Wallenberg” project, a series of interviews with Wallenberg survivors.
“There were hundreds of people waiting. And suddenly, two cars came by and Wallenberg came and said, “Anybody with a Swedish Schutz-Pass please step forward.” My mother jumped, because she had one, she went there, and he said, “Get into the car,” and he gathered other people, I do not know how many exactly, maybe 15, 20 people, and he brought back my mother, back right to the door where we lived.” George Schwarz
“So here comes this Swedish gentleman from a distinguished family and is willing to risk. And that gives one back some of this feeling that maybe we are worth saving. Maybe we are not the scum of the earth. That was a very important message that his mere presence gave us.” Judith Saly
“They picked me out from a bakery line, and without saying anything they took me to the bank of the Danube. There were about a hundred people there, waiting to be shot and get it over with. Wallenberg showed up, and he said that whoever lived in a safe house should come and see him. So I went, and it was a magical moment when our eyes met. He said that I would be protected…” Tibor Gonda
“Those six people he saved, are now, Baruch Hashem, 159 souls. What I have been trying to find out for many years now, is how many are alive today because of Raoul’s one hundred thousand souls saved. How many? One million? Two million? Who can design an algorithm to answer that question? This man, who was not Jewish, risked his own life so that he could save Jews. Because of that, and who knows of some other reasons, he disappeared.” Kayla Kaufman
“I am very glad that somebody like [Wallenberg] was around. There should have been a few thousand people like that around, but there wasn’t.” Giselle Bulow
“He was an exceptional human being. I wish fate would have been able to pay him back for all the good deeds he did.” Agnes Adler
“Raoul Wallenberg is the greatest hero of my life. Brave, risking his own life selflessly and being highly effective in his mission of saving the lives of tens of thousands of Jews he did not know and whose religion he did not share. I am most grateful to my fate for having known him personally and working for him.” Janos Beer
Founded in 1997, the International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation is a non-profit, non-governmental organization with offices in New York, Berlin, Buenos Aires, and Jerusalem. Visit us at www.raoulwallenberg.net. The IRWF is a tax exempt public charity under IRS Code: 501(C)(3). IRS EIN # 13-4113121.