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An Unlikely Hero: The Story of Raoul Wallenberg - RAOUL GETS HIS CHANCE

Swedish Embassy, 1944 0 Member Stories Famous Historical Events Famous People History Civil Rights

Iver Olsen was secretly sent by the American President, Franklin Roosevelt, and the United States Refugee Board to find an individual from a neutral country who could help to save people from Eichmann’s terrible plan. He needed someone who could travel to Hungary without arousing suspicion.

After interviewing Raoul Wallenberg, Olsen determined he was exactly the person he was looking for. He instructed Raoul in what he should do and how he was to proceed. But Raoul had some of his own requirements which he demanded before he would accept this dangerous assignment:

  • First, he said he could not operate within the rules of what he could do and could not do in order to save these people.
  • Second, he stated he would not write reports in fear of his mission being compromised.
  • Third, he must be able to go wherever he needed—as he pleased—and would have permission to speak to anyone who could help him.
  • Lastly, he would require a great deal of money because he knew he would need to bribe, or pay-off the necessary people to be successful.

Olsen agreed to these terms.

Raoul arrived in Budapest, Hungary during the first week of July. He was posing as a Swedish diplomat and went directly to the Swedish embassy. Upon arriving there, he saw the embassy courtyard mobbed with people. He asked another diplomat what they were doing there.

The diplomat held up a pass which stated that the person who had it had relatives in Sweden and was moving there. He told Raoul:

They all want one of these. But we only are allowed by give out 4500 of the passes.

Raoul thought about that as he surveyed the crowd:

That is not nearly enough.

Then he started to plan what he could do next.

Original Release: May 01, 2015

Updated Last Revision: Jun 02, 2016


To cite this story (For MLA citation guidance see easybib or OWL ):

"RAOUL GETS HIS CHANCE" AwesomeStories.com. May 01, 2015. Dec 14, 2017.
       <http://www.awesomestories.com/asset/view/RAOUL-GETS-HIS-CHANCE-An-Unlikely-Hero-The-Story-of-Raoul-Wallenberg/1>.
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