A major library received well over a hundred copies of books about Anne Frank’s work from an anonymous donor.
The Wall Street Journal reported today that Tokyo’s Metropolitan Central Library received two boxes of books about Anne Frank and copies of Frank’s diaries from someone with the pseudonym “Chiune Sugihara”, after the real-life Japanese diplomat who saved the lives of thousands of Jews from the Nazi Holocaust of the 1940s. Accordingly, he is also remembered as “Japanese Schindler”.
The blog telling the story of this donation writes that the donation came with the Biblical quote “Lift up thy hands toward him for the life of thy young children, that faint for hunger in the top of every street” as a note.
The donation comes in response to the recent incident of vandalism targeting hundreds of Anne Frank books in various Japanese libraries. The New York Times reported last week that more than 260 Anne Frank books were found damaged with several pages torn off them in as many as 31 public libraries in Tokyo. Authorities in Japan are said to be investigating the incident and have already condemned it as “extremely regrettable and shameful”.
The donations from “Chiune Sugihara” and others, mainly from Israel, represent the awareness of the need to care for books and material that present history seen through the eyes of victims. Such material holds immense value in the process of recovery and also serves as a yardstick to measure one’s intellectual, political, and social progress over time.