Award Honors The Legacy of Karski,
A Courier In The Polish Underground
U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Accepts Jan Karski Eagle Award for “Humanitarian Service to Others” in Centennial Anniversary of the Holocaust Rescuer’s Birth
WASHINGTON, D.C. (December 16, 2014) — The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum was presented with the Jan Karski Eagle Award, which was established by Jan Karski in 2000 “for the humanitarian service to others,” at a ceremony at the Museum today.
In photo: Sara J. Bloomfield, director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, accepts the Jan Karski Eagle Award, which was presented by Abraham H. Foxman (middle), the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, and Waldemar Piasecki (left) of the Jan Karski Society. Photo credit: U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
Director Sara J. Bloomfield accepted the award on behalf of the Museum from past-awardee Abraham H. Foxman, the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, and representatives of the Jan Karski Society. Past award recipients include Elie Wiesel, Museum founding chairman and Nobel Peace Prize laureate.
“Jan Karski knew the ‘terrible truth’ of the Holocaust while it was unfolding and tried to mobilize the world to stop it,” Bloomfield says. “The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum tells this truth to remember what happened and prevent it from happening again. I am honored to accept this award bearing Karski’s name on behalf of these efforts.”
Karski, born 100 years ago this year, was active in the Polish underground during World War II, becoming a courier for the resistance and bringing out first-hand news to the British and American governments about the murder of Europe’s Jews — even meeting with U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt. (Allied governments were focused on the military defeat of Germany, and Karski’s message was greeted with disbelief or indifference.) He is recognized as one of the rescuers, “Righteous Among the Nations,” for his exceptional heroism by Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial. After the war, Karski moved to the District, became a U.S. citizen and devoted himself to remembrance and education.
About the Museum
A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. Its far-reaching educational programs and global impact are made possible by generous donors. For more information, visit www.ushmm.org