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The Unheard Story of Bulgaria's Rescue of 50,000 Jews

Bulgarian slave laborers during WWII (Photo: wikicommons/יוסי נבו, Yossi Nevo)

Each week, we bring you the story of a Gentile individual or family who risked their own lives to save the lives of Jewish people during the Holocaust. But this week, CAMERA's Katrin Gendov tells the story of a nation that saved thousands of Jews, a story that was suppressed for decades by the communist government of Bulgaria:

You have probably heard of Schindler’s List — Steven Spielberg’s movie, that brought to life the story of a German member and spy of the Nazi party who saved the lives of over 1000 Jews during the Holocaust by employing them in his factories in occupied Poland.

You may have also heard of the heroic rescue of the Danish Jews. With the help of the Danish people and the Danish resistance movement, 7,220 out of the 7,800 Jews escaped the Nazis, finding salvation in Sweden.

What’s lesser known is the story of the fifty thousand Jews saved by Bulgaria. A story no less fascinating or deserving of recognition, yet unknown to many. Michael Bar-Zohar states in his book “Beyond Hitler’s Grasp” that “For years Bulgaria’s Communist regime had tried to suppress the real story about the rescue for a very simple reason. The Bulgarian rescue had been carried out mostly by Communism’s three worst enemies: the Church, the royal court, and the pro-Fascist politicians. The Communist regime couldn’t admit that fact because it contradicted its basic beliefs.” An even more fascinating fact about the rescue is that the fifty thousand Jews were saved while Bulgaria was an actual ally to Hitler...

Tags: Advocates and Allies

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