Per Anger, Wallenberg partner, saved Hungarian Jews…

Another hero…

From a 2002 article:

Per Anger, Wallenberg partner, dies in Sweden

Per Anger, the Swedish diplomat who assisted Raoul Wallenberg in the struggle to save Hungarian Jewry, died yesterday in Stockholm at the age of 89. Anger had a distinguished career spanning four decades in the Swedish foreign service, serving as Swedish ambassador to Canada and Australia. But his defining experience was as secretary in the Swedish legation in Budapest, where he personally saved numerous Jews by granting them “provisional passes” which allowed them to escape the Nazi occupation.

Wallenberg joined the Swedish legation in 1944, and the effort to rescue Hungarian Jews was greatly accelerated, ultimately resulting in the rescue of more than 100,000 Jews. Anger often accompanied Wallenberg to scenes of Jewish deportation, where the two Swedes would pull numerous people out of line and shove life-saving passes into their hands. On several occasions, the two men climbed into crowded death trains and dragged dozens of Jews away, warning the German guards “not to interfere in official Swedish business.”

After Wallenberg was taken prisoner by the liberating Soviets in January of 1945, Anger dedicated his life to discovering the fate of his partner, a fate still unknown. Anger chaired the Wallenberg Association of Sweden, and managed his government’s Wallenberg file until 1989.

Anger was named a Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem in 1983, and became an Honorary Citizen of Israel in September of 2000. Said Max Grunberg, Chairman of the Raoul Wallenberg Honorary Citizen Committee, “Anger and Wallenberg were two great humanitarians who chose to put themselves at risk in order to save Jewish lives. They were two outstanding beacons of light in an otherwise dark and dismal world.”

From Wikipedia:

Per Johan Valentin Anger (December 7, 1913August 26, 2002) was a Swedish diplomat who participated in efforts to rescue Hungarian Jews from arrest and deportation by the Nazis during World War II.

Born in Göteborg, Anger studied law at the University of Stockholm and later at the University of Uppsala. After graduating in November 1939, he was drafted into the army. Soon afterwards, the Swedish foreign ministry offered him a trainee position at the Swedish legation in Berlin, which he began in January 1940. Anger was assigned to the trade department, but after the legation received information about an impending Nazi attack on Norway and Denmark, he became involved in relaying intelligence to Stockholm. In June 1941 he returned to Stockholm, where he worked on trade relations between Sweden and Hungary. In November 1942 he was sent to Budapest as second secretary at the Swedish legation.

After Germany invaded Hungary on March 19, 1944, Anger became involved in efforts to aid Hungarian Jews. Anger originated the idea of issuing Swedish provisional passports and special certificates to protect Jews from internment and deportation. Seven hundred of these documents were issued initially. Although the legality of the documents was doubtful, the Hungarian government agreed to recognize their bearers as Swedish citizens.

On July 9, Raoul Wallenberg arrived in Budapest. He immediately extended Anger’s initiative, introducing colorful protective passes (Schutzpasse) and creating “safe houses” throughout the city. Anger and Wallenberg worked together, often literally snatching people from transports and death marches. After the Soviets invaded in January 1945, both Anger and Wallenberg were taken into custody. Anger was released three months later, but Wallenberg never emerged again, becoming one of the 20th Century’s most famous missing persons.

After the war, Anger served in numerous diplomatic posts in Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Austria and the United States. He later became head of Sweden’s international aid program and served as ambassador to Australia, Canada and the Bahamas. Throughout his post-war career, Anger led efforts to learn what happened to Wallenberg, even meeting personally with Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev in the 1980s. In 2000, the Russian government finally acknowledged that Wallenberg and his driver died in Soviet custody in 1947, although the exact circumstances of their deaths remain unclear.

In 1982 Anger was recognized by Yad Vashem as one of the Righteous Among the Nations, and in 1995 he was honored with the Hungarian Republic’s Order of Merit. In 2000 he was awarded honorary Israeli citizenship. In 2001, the American Swedish Historical Museum presented him the “Spirit of Raoul Wallenberg Humanitarian Award,” and in April 2002 Swedish Prime Minister Göran Persson awarded Anger the “Illis Quorum Meruere Labores” for his actions during and after the war.

Anger died in Stockholm after suffering a stroke.

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