Albanians Sheltered Hundreds Of Jews During Holocaust

Grace Higgins | October 7th, 2019

During World War II, there were several European nations where the Nazi slaughterhouse seemed to not get a hold of, but few have as such a remarkable story than Albania. During the holocaust, ordinary Albanians would move Jews around hiding spots regularly. They did it so well that the death count was only five.

nyt.com

They saved nearly all of their own 200 native Jews and rescued over 400 from Germany and Austria. They even found time to venture into Nazi-occupied Balkan lands and rescue several hundred from there also.

When it came down to it, Albania was the only European country that had a higher Jewish population after the war than at the beginning of the war. This is a statistic that has been confirmed by Michael Berenbaum, a former project director of the Holocaust Memorial Museum in the United States of America.

The impressive rescue story did not come out until the early 1990s, because the communist government in power at the time, was quite repressive and did not let much news or stories out of Albania. Yad Vashem, head of the Holocaust Research Insitute, confirmed that the story was true and not just an urban myth in 2007.

It is a story that Albania is now keen to tell and wants the world to know about, as they attempt to join the European Union, they have been told they need to clean up their corrupt government. This story of rescuing hundreds of Jews during the Holocaust, whilst the Albanian people were under quite a repressive communist regime themselves, is seen as an immense success story for their country. They feel it highlights an episode of Albanian magnanimity and that also shows Albanians honor their promises.

You see the difference compared to other European countries was that in Albanian culture there is a deeply rooted obligation which is called besa. It obligates Albanians to provide shelter and safe passage for anyone who needs protection, and if you fail to act, then you bring shame and loss of honor to yourself and your family.

Next Article
  • How The USSR Helped Fund A Small Bridge In South West Virginia

    Near the border of Kentucky in South West Virginia there is a very small community called Vulcan. It is actually an unincorporated community that was built up as a coal mining town. However in the early 1960s all the mines dried up and the community fell into economic problems. Many simply left to find jobs...

    Read More
  • Svalbard The Norwegian Archipelago Is Visa Free

    Svalbard is the Norwegian archipelago if you translate the name of the place it is called “cold edge.” Which makes a lot of sense as it is very cold and at the edge of the world. It is famous as it is one of the only places in the world that is entirely visa-free. Situated...

    Read More
  • Kevin Durant And Other Players To Compete In 2k Tournament

    With the recent shutdown of all sports, 2k and the National Basketball Players Association has partnered to air an NBA 2k tournament between players on ESPN. The tournament will start on Friday, April 3rd, from 7-8:30 p.m. on ESPN and then switch to ESPN2 from 8:30-11:30 p.m. No games will take place on Saturday, but...

    Read More
  • The Mysterious Blue People Of Kentucky

    The year is 1820 and one young couple has just arrived in a place called Troublesome Creek. This was a remote and small settlement deep in eastern Kentucky - the American dream of the New World. Martin Fugate is a French orphan and his wife is a red-haired woman called Elizabeth Smith. Elizabeth is very...

    Read More
  • The Greek Drachma Currency Was Used For Over 3,000 Years

    The drachma, as was called the Greek currency before implementing the Euro was one of the most widely circulated coins in the world. This is because the Greek currency has existed long before the formation of Greece as we know today. The drachma was used in the world during the time of Alexander the Great....

    Read More
  • Giraffe Only Sleep 30 Minutes Every Day

    If you like your beauty sleep and lazy Sundays, well, you better hope that you are not a giraffe. Giraffes are one of the only mammals that you will probably never catch sleeping. This is because despite being the tallest animal on the whole planet, they have the shortest sleep requirements of any mammal. The...

    Read More
  • The Secret Service Agent Who Flirted His Way To An Arrest

    Being a Secret Service agent hunting down the worst of criminals all other the world that is scamming and hacking American citizens hard-earned cash does require an extreme amount of bravery. Agents face extreme situations daily to keep The United States of America safe, but sometimes it also means flirting with a Romanian hacker just...

    Read More
  • The Astronomer Who Had A Pet Drunken Moose

    Tycho Brahe was an eccentric astronomer who lived from 1546 to 1601, he holds many scientific accomplishments such as the discovery of the supernova in 1572. He also published a series of essays on the movement of comets and let's not forget his heated feuds with Galileo himself. You see Brahe had one advantage over...

    Read More