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House Committee Celebrates Irena Sendler

On July 16, the House Foreign Affairs Committee approved a number of bills en bloc, by voice vote, including a resolution (H. Con. Res. 361) to commemorate Irena Sendler, a woman whose bravery saved the lives of thousands during the Holocaust and remembering her legacy of courage, selflessness, and hope.

Sponsored by Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), the resolution contains a number of findings, including:

  • on May 12, 2008, Irena Sendler, a living example of social justice, died at the age of 98;
  • Irena Sendler became an early activist at the start of World War II, heading the clandestine group Zegota and driving an underground movement that provided safe passage for Jews from the Warsaw ghetto, who were facing disease, execution, or deportation to concentration camps;
  • Irena Sendler became one of Zegota’s most successful workers, taking charge of the children’s division and using her senior position with the city’s welfare department to gain access to and from the ghetto and build a network of allies to help ferry Jewish children from the Warsaw ghetto;
  • in 2006, Irena Sendler was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize; and
  • Americans, as well as the world community, are reminded not only of the horrible cruelty at the time of the Holocaust, but also the incredible difference one person can make, by knowing Irena Sendler’s story.
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