Monday, February 11, 2008

Tom Lantos, 1928- 2008

Foreign Minister Kinga Goncz (Socialist) said that Hungary had lost its most important lobbyist in U.S. decision-making. "Tom Lantos was both an American and Hungarian -- if anyone went to the U.S. from Hungary, he was always ready to help.."

Hungary's opposition Fidesz and Christian Democratic parties expressed deep sadness over Lantos's death. Lantos greatly contributed to the U.S. public understanding of the situation of ethnic Hungarian minorities and their struggle to preserve their identity (here)

Tom Lantos was a great American. Here's what he said at the dedication ceremony of the Victims of Communism Memorial last year:

"Communism was not the only monstrous phenomenon determined to destroy free and open societies," said Lantos, who is chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Lantos, a Holocaust survivor, said he had fought against Nazism and communism, and "it is now my privilege to fight against Islamic terrorism determined to take us back 13 centuries." (NRP)

WJC President Ronald S. Lauder said, "Tom Lantos was a leader and afriend to all those around the world who fought for democracy and humanrights, and no less to the Jewish people and the State of Israel. His handguided every landmark in our recent history, from the fight against Nazityranny during the Holocaust to the championing of Soviet Jewry. His voicewas never silent until today. Our thoughts and prayers are with his belovedwife Annette and his loving family." (World Jewish Congress)


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