Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Simon Wiesenthal -- A True Hero

I was saddened to hear that Simon Wiesenthal had passed away, though he lived a very long life. And he is a true hero, in my definition of the word, in that he had a goal and lived his life to achieve that goal -- bring Nazis to justice (though it is debatable that there is justice for what they did). He foresaw this day when he said: "When we come to the other world and meet the millions of Jews who died in the camps and they ask us: "What have you done?" there will be many answers... I will say: "I didn't forget you."
This man made a career out of searching out Nazi officers in all corners of the earth, as well as dealing with those carrying out all kinds of hate crimes. He fought anti-Semitism and prejudice, seeking tolerance, justice and fairness. In his own words, he was a realist, knowing the importance of not forgetting the Holocaust (how could he as he had been in five concentration camps!), but mostly making sure it would not happen again. This article summarizes many of his thoughts on his accomplishments:
One quote in all the accounts I read said: "Many men stand tall, but few reach the stature of Simon Wiesenthal." Gosh, I wish I had said that.