Kurier, January 13, 2017
German original: https://kurier.at/meinung/danke-ari-du-kaempfer/240.796.685
Helmut Brandstätter, Editor in chief and publisher
We bow to Ari Rath (1925-2017), the man who was expelled from Vienna and returned to the city of his birth, the publicist, who helped build up journalism in the young state of Israel, the narrator, who explained our history to us and who could describe world politics after World war II based on his own accounts. And we bow before the friend, who never lost his humor and optimism.
On, October 31, 1938, Hitler Youth forced the 13-year old onto a truck; they wanted to deliver him to forced labor. But he managed to escape with a friend and the next day, he and his brother Maximilian made their way to safety, via Trieste to Palestine.
For 73 years, he visited Austria for no more than a day at a time, but then he started to visit regularly. He thought it was important that people listened to him, he believed in people’s learning aptitude.
„Ari Means Lion“, that is the title of his memoir. „I see it as a great gift that my natural curiosity, my good memory and my optimism never left me,“ he wrote. We are thankful for that, too.