Six Thousand Visas for Life
129’ x 1 episode
This program will make you think hard about the meaning of life. Commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Second World War, this special drama tells a remarkable true story of Chiune Sugihara, also known as the Japanese Schindler.
Sugihara, the Japanese Consul-General is sent to Lithuania to open a consulate service to report on Russian troop movements during the war. One morning in late July of 1940, his family finds hundreds of Jewish refugees gathered outside the consulate’s gate requesting transit visas for Japan to escape the Nazi Holocaust. Sugihara asks the government three times for permission, but his requests are turned down because Japan at that time is allied to Germany. After a great deal of thought, he decides to act. He issues countless visas by hand to save the lives of more than six-thousand Jews. For his efforts Sugihara was dismissed from the diplomatic service in 1945 and the family had to endure many hardships thereafter. His receipt of the “Righteous Among the Nations” award from Israel in 1985 finally lead to his recognition around the world, yet his heroic actions are still little-known in Japan.