Our Values Show the Way | Naphtali Hoff

July 10, 2014 9:01 PM

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Our Values Show the Way | Naphtali Hoff

One of the most powerful and heartwarming subplots from the tragic period of the Holocaust was the heroic role that many "righteous gentiles" played in saving the lives of Jewish neighbors and refugees. Many men and women sheltered and fed Jews who sought sanctuary, at the risk of their own lives. A handful of diplomats used the power of their positions to issues visas and other documents to allow the refugees to leave Europe and seek asylum on new shores.

One such man was a Catholic diplomat, Aristides de Sousa Mendes. He served as Portuguese counsel general in Bordeaux, France on the eve of the war. Due to its neutrality, Portugal was in position to issue visas for desperate people seeking to emigrate. Despite a policy that forbade the issuance of v...

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