Oskar Schindler Dead at 66

Oskar Schindler, a Roman Catholic who saved more than 1200 Jews from Nazi gas chambers, died in Argentina last week at the-age of 66. During World War II he employed Jews in his munitions factory, hid and fed them and outwitted the Gestapo in numerous efforts to save Jews. He was arrested twice by the Gestapo and freed through the intervention of his friends in the army.

On a visit to New York in 1972 where he was honored by some 150 Jewish friends, most of whom had been aided by Mr. Schindler, he told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in an interview that he acted as he did because he hated cruelty and intolerance. During that visit at the headquarters of the American Friends of the Hebrew University, several of those whom he helped save told the JTA about his fearless and courageous efforts that involved forging of identification papers to get Jews out of concentration camps.

They recalled that one of his major achievements was the liberation of some 200 Jewish women from Auschwitz and their transfer to his factory. The employment of Jews in essential industry was permitted by the Nazis in order to keep the munitions industry going. After the war, when the Soviet army entered Germany and expropriated his factory. Jewish organizations helped Mr. Schindler settle in Argentina where he operated a small farm outside Buenos Aires.

During his New York visit, his friends announced that they had raised S125,000 for the establishment of an educational project in his honor on the Mount Scopus campus of the Hebrew University. In 1962 Israel honored him as “a just man.” In 1966 West Germany gave him its Cross of Merit, and in 1967 the International Buber Society in London awarded him its peace prize.

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