You are here

He Defied the Tide of Time

1 post / 0 new
Anonymous (not verified)
Anonymous's picture
He Defied the Tide of Time

Christine Beresniova reviews He Defied the Tide of Time, directed by Suzanne Concha Emmrich (2012, 29 minutes)

During the opening credits of He defied the Tide of Time, an unidentified voice explains, “I didn't care if I was fired. Anyone in that situation would have done the same.” Although the words are simple, they represent an extreme situation that was anything but representative of how most individuals did act at the time. The words are those of Chiune Sugihara, a Japanese diplomat stationed in Lithuania during WWII, who saved over 6,000 Jews from the Holocaust by issuing much needed Japanese transit visas. While the number of Jewish refugees that Sugihara saved from certain death was considerable, his story is still not well known. He defied the Tide of Time attempts to change this oversight by shedding light on Sugihara’s incredible story.

Skilled at learning languages, Chiune Sugihara worked for the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs at various international posts. Sugihara was also trained in espionage, which led him to the extreme situation alluded to in the film’s opening scene. In 1939, Sugihara was responsible for opening a Japanese Consulate in the Lithuanian town of Kaunas. Opened under the auspices of assisting Japanese tourists and businessmen in the region, the consulate provided a means for Sugihara to gather intelligence about the Soviet Union and Germany on the eve of WWII. The clandestine information gathered by Sugihara allowed him to warn individuals—especially Jews—of the coming Nazi occupation in Lithuania.

read more