Posted BY: Marion DS Dreyfus

As the 100-plus crowd exited the auditorium at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York, shuffling as crowds do when the hour is late and the temperature plunging, a voice behind me muttered “Mach Schnell!” 

I froze for a moment.  

We had all been privy for the prior three hours to a compelling program dubbed “Remember This,” a movie/play of David Strathairn performing a lightly fictionalized compilation of the thoughts, perceptions, and emotions of Polish patriot and Holocaust truth-teller, Jan Karski. 

Karski entered into and escaped from many of the camps, as a personal devotion to what the Jews were experiencing. He brought his excruciating experiences to the U.S. president, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who treated Karski and his scalding reports of the ongoing horrors in Europe dismissively, and changed his policies during WWII not one iota. FDR was no friend of the Jews, though I heard that assertion many times as I grew up in the States. 

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Karski told his impressions, his truths, while thousands of Jews still breathed. Many could have lived, if those he spoke to had listened to him. And acted to save them.

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