Beate Klarsfeld was born in
Berlin in 1939. A German and Lutheran, she has become throughout the
world, by virtue of her courageous acts, a symbol of the most praiseworthy
struggle against anti Semitism, against the vestiges of Nazism and for peace
between the Arab countries and Israel. These words describing Beate
Klarsfeld were sent from Israel to Oslo in 1977, when she was the first German
to be nominated by Israel for the Nobel Peace Prize. Her candidacy was
supported by fifty six members of the Knesseth (among whom we may cite Menahem
Begin, Itzhak Navon, Abba Eban) and by numerous university professors.
For ten years, she has led the combat to end the impunity of Nazi
criminals. In 1975, she succeeded in obtaining the ratification by the
Bundestag of the law authorizing the trial of leaders of the Nazi police
network which operated in France. In July 1978, she was instrumental in
obtaining the indictment of the three Nazis primarily responsible for the
deportation of 76.000, Jews from France : Lischka, Hagen and Heinrichsohn are
to be tried in Cologne.
Beate Klarsfeld awoke the conscience of the
German people when in 1968 she publicly slapped Kurt Georg Kiesinger, former
Nazi propagandist in a courageous protest against the latter's presence in the
Arrested several times in Germany, Mrs. Klarsfeld
was imprisoned in Warsaw in 1970 and in Prague in 1971 as she demonstrated
against anti-Semitic campaigns and repression. She was again arrested in 1972
in La Paz, where she found and identified the former head of the Gestapo of
Lyon, Klaus Barbie. She demonstrated in Damascus after the Yom Kippur war
against the refusal to publish a list of Israeli prisoners of war and against
their mistreatment. In October 1974, she was arrested in Rabat, during the
summit meeting of the Arab States, as she was distributing in the streets
leaflets in favour of Israel. In May 1977, she demonstrated in Buenos Aires and
in Montevideo to denounce torture and growing anti-Semitism.
Beate Klarsfeld was honoured in New York with the first Adele Rosenwald Award
of the United Jewish Appeal. She lectures in the United States every year under
the auspices of the Anti Defamation League of the B'Nai Brith. The Klarsfelds
and their two children live in Paris.
Serge Klarsfeld, a lawyer,
also holds a Master's degree in history from the Sorbonne. He is in addition a
graduate of the Institut des Sciences Politiques in Paris.
1935, he escaped by miracle from the Gestapo at the time of the arrest of his
father. The elder Klarsfeld perished at Auschwitz.
Active with his wife
in the fight to obtain the trial of Nazi criminals, Serge Klarsfeld is the most
virulent enemy of the Neo Nazis in Germany. He is also the author of the
monumental << Memorial of the Deportation of the Jews from France