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Karski’s US Medal on display in Łódź

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 15.07.2013 13:11
The Presidential Medal of Freedom, awarded posthumously to war-time hero Jan Karski by Barack Obama last year, has been put on permanent display in the Museum of the City of Łódź, Karski’s birthplace.

Jan Karski: photo - wikicommons

The exhibit is part of the Museum’s Jan Karski Room which includes over 100 items documenting his life and activities, donated to the Museum by Karski in 1999, a year before his death.

The Medal of Freedom is the US’s highest civilian honour.

In presenting it to Karski, Barack Obama referred to Karski’s accounts of Holocaust, saying: “We must tell our children about how this evil was allowed to happen—because so many people succumbed to their darkest instincts; because so many others stood silent.

“But let us also tell our children about the Righteous Among the Nations. Among them was Jan Karski—a young Polish Catholic—who witnessed Jews being put on cattle cars, who saw the killings, and who told the truth, all the way to President Roosevelt himself”.

Karski served as an officer in the Polish Underground during World War II.
In order to gather evidence on the plight of Polish Jews, he was smuggled by Jewish underground leaders into the Warsaw Ghetto. Having escaped from Nazi-occupied Poland, he met several Allied leaders but failed to secure support for Polish Jews.

After the war, he settled in the United States and became a professor as Georgetown University in Washington. World-wide events commemorating Karski are planned for next year, the centenary of his birth. (mk/pg)

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