Jan Karski Heroes

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There were many heroes during the time of World War II. They did many things to help, ranging from hiding Jews to handing out pamphlets against what the Nazi’s were doing. These acts were courageous and many of these people have been awarded for their bravery. Unfortunately, most of these heroes are not known or as praised as they should be. Although he is not well-known, Jan Karski was one of the first people to enlighten the world about the horrors of Holocaust. Karski was born in Lodz, Poland in the year 1914, but not as Jan Karski (“Jan Karski” Jewish). His name was originally Jan Kozielewski; he had his name changed later on in his life. The actual date of his birth is something that is argued upon. With different dates on his passports,…show more content…
After he managed to escape he joined the Underground Polish Army, and became a courier (“Jan Karski” USHMM). When he became a courier he needed a new name, thus he became Jan Karski (“Jan Karski” Wikipedia). As a courier, he crossed enemy lines to and fro Poland and Western Europe (“Jan Karski” Jewish). He also, transported information between Underground Army and Polish government-in-exile (“Jan Karski” USHMM). When he met leaders of the Jewish resistance in the Warsaw Ghetto, which was not hard to enter, they were very desperate to inform London about the extermination of the Jews that was happening. They also wanted him there so that he could have a better understanding of what was happening and to be able to report it, in detail, to the world. The resistance told him to only tell Polish Jewish officials when there because others may be too alarmed at the information and complicate the problem greater (“Claude Lanzmann Shoah Collection, Interview with Jan Karski” USHMM). After adopting a disguise he managed to get close to a midpoint between death camps (“Jan Karski” Wikipedia). It was there that he saw thousands of tangled body parts being shoved onto a train. Karski was in a state of complete shock, mixed with horror (“Claude Lanzmann Shoah Collection, Interview with Jan Karski” USHMM). During one of his assignments he was captured by the…show more content…
He reported everything he had seen prior to his arrival, including his visit to Warsaw. He also gave a warning of what the Nazi’s plans were for murdering even more Jews. A year later, he gave the very same information to President Franklin D. Roosevelt (“Jan Karski” USHMM). President F.D.R. half-listened to him but was more concerned about Poland’s condition and never once asked him to go into more detail on what was happening to the Jews; even when he told him that all hope for the Jewish people rested in his hands and that the Polish Nation was depending on him to get away from the Nazi’s (“Claude Lanzmann Shoah Collection, Interview with Jan Karski” USHMM). He did, however, convince President F.D.R. to give 12 million dollars to the Polish resistance (“Oral History Interview with Jan Karski” USHMM). He was then sent to a Supreme Court Justice, who said that he just could not believe such a story. Later, when speaking to one of the heads of European underground movement in Britain, he said that although he knew the stories were false, they were great for propaganda purposes (“Claude Lanzmann Shoah Collection, Interview with Jan Karski” USHMM). So although, he tried to warn the Allied Powers about what was happening his message was met with disbelief or indifference because they were so focused on defeating the Germans (“Alerting the World: Jan Karski” USHMM). He eventually had

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