Out of the many European countries that the Nazis had taken over, the occupation of Denmark was unique because of the partial autonomy they were given by the Nazis due to Denmark’s neutral status in the beginning of the war. During this time of occupation, a theologian and professor of church history at the University of Copenhagen named Hal Koch started to give public lectures about how the toleration of Nazi occupation contradicts with the nation’s Biblical ideals and democratic belief. Koch roused the spirits of many Danes and brought back the pride of Denmark. Denmark, as a nation was special due to its love for democracy, as well as its deep ideals that all the people of Denmark were righteous citizens, no matter who they are. In 1943, as the German occupiers demanded more and more from the Danes, they started to refuse to meet those ...
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...rge house near the beach, which he was using to shelter Jews escaping from the Nazis who were waiting for a boat to Sweden. Knud moved to the United States soon after the War.
After many years, on Christiansen’s 65th birthday, a holocaust survivor named Max Rawitscher released details on Knud’s heroic deeds. Twenty-five years later, Yad Vashem, a Jewish organization created to remember the Jews who perished in the Holocaust, recognized Knud and his wife Karen as Righteous among the Nations, which is an award that is given to non-Jews who risked their lives to help Jewish people.
Throughout the entire war, out of the six million European Jews that perished, only about one hundred were Danes. The very fact that ninety-five percent of Danish Jews survived the war shows just how much a nation that believes in itself can do against an onslaught of cruelty and barbarism.
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