Menachem Rosensaft Professor of law and son of Holocaust survivors

Menachem Z. Rosensaft, a lawyer in New York City, is the Founding Chairman of the International Network of Children of Jewish Holocaust Survivors, Vice President of the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Their Descendants, Chairman of the Editorial Board of the Holocaust Survivors’ Memoirs Project, a joint publishing endeavor with Yad Vashem in Jerusalem, and a former National President of the Labor Zionist Alliance. He is Adjunct Professor of Law at Cornell University Law School and Lecturer in Law at Columbia Law School. He is the editor of God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors (Jewish Lights Publishing), available December 2014.

The son of two survivors of the Nazi concentration camps of Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen, he was born in the Displaced Persons camp of Bergen-Belsen in 1948. In addition to a law degree from the Columbia University School of Law, he received M.A. degrees in, respectively, creative writing from Johns Hopkins University and Modern European History from Columbia University. On May 5, 1985, he organized and led a demonstration at Bergen-Belsen in protest against visits that day by President Ronald Reagan and West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl to the mass-graves of Bergen-Belsen and the German military cemetery at Bitburg. In April 1987, he played a key role in convincing the government of Panama not to give sanctuary to Nazi war criminal Karl Linnas, and in ensuring Linnas’ deportation from the United States to the Soviet Union. In December 1988, he was one of five American Jews who met in Stockholm, Sweden, with senior leaders of the Palestine Liberation Organization, resulting in the PLO’s first public recognition of Israel.

He was appointed to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council by President Obama and by President Clinton. He has contributed articles to The New York Times, The Washington Post, Newsweek, the Los Angeles Times, the International Herald Tribune, the Jerusalem Post, and other publications, and is the editor of Life Reborn, Jewish Displaced Persons 1945-1951, published by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

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