Resistance during the holocaust was not rare, but in many cases, it was not common. In most situations, deliberately going against set rules and laws is considered the wrong thing to do; that you are deviating from a moral code that has been set for you to stop you from making mistakes. Fortunately, in Chiune Sugihara’s case, this is not the problem.
Sugihara’s upbringing inside japan, and outside, shaped the way he viewed and interacted with the world around him. Sugihara was the second of six children born to Yoshimizu and Yatsu Sugihara. Chiune’s mother comes from a long line of samurai, and his “early years are steeped in the ancient traditions of the Bushido Code” (PBS). The Bushido code stresses the values of duty, honor, and dignity. Sugihara used this code as a base to branch off of and mold his own personal beliefs. Growing up, it was easy to see that Sugihara “was cosmopolitan from the inside out and from the bottom side up” (PBS). Although his father wanted Chiune to be a doctor, he instead defied his father and went to Waseda University to study English literature. Just a year into university, Sugihara won a scholarship to study Russian at Japan’s diplomatic school in Harbin, Manchuria.
Sugihara got a job working as a clerk at the Japanese embassy in Harbin. During the years he serviced the embassy, he observed accounts of firsthand cruelty as a deputy foreign. For some years, he worked with the embassy to purchase the Manchurian railroad; and after he helped accomplish the obtainment of the railroad, he left because he was disgusted by the way the Japanese treated and killed the Chinese like they were an inferior race.
After 5 years and stations in Tokyo and Helsinki, Sugihara finally opens his own one-man consulate in Kaunas, Lithuania. His primary duty as the only Japanese consulate is to report movements near the Lithuanian borders by Nazi and Russian troops. Information like this is vital to Japan’s interests; if the Nazi’s should invade...
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