May 27, 2017 02:59 AM PST
SINCE 2007

San Francisco screening of ‘Rescue in the Philippines: Refuge from the Holocaust’

SAN FRANCISCO -- On Sunday, April 7, at the New People Cinema in San Francisco, two back to back screenings of the documentary Film Rescue in the Philippines: Refuge from the Holocaust were held, marking the film’s world premier.

The successful free public screenings saw the attendance of members of the Philippine Consulate General, members of the Filipino American Community including surviving Bay Area-based Filipino veterans of World War II, as well as members of the Jewish community particularly Philippine Jewish refugee family members.

Through a compilation of interviews interwoven with pictures and footages, the one-hour documentary film set with the background of a world consumed in world war, chronicled the previously untold story of how the five Frieder brothers -- Cincinnati businessmen making two-for-a nickel cigars in pre-WWII Manila -- together with Commonwealth President Manuel Quezon, U.S. High Commissioner and former governor of Indiana Paul Mc Nutt, and Army Col. Dwight Eisenhower, planned and helped 1200 German and Austrian Jews escape the Nazis and seek refuge in the Philippines. 

In introducing the film, Barbara Sasser, the film’s senior consultant and the granddaughter of Alex Frieder, one of the five brothers, reiterated the Jewish people’s deep appreciation to the Philippines.

Ms. Sasser, together with Mary Farquhar, a WWII young Jewish refugee who lived in Manila, also led the Q&A held after the screening. A Jewish refugee family member led the acknowledgement by the audience of the presence of Filipino war veterans and paid tribute to them for their contributions to preserving life and defending democracy and human rights during World War II.

Ms. Sasser announced she is currently seeking to hold more U.S.-wide screenings of the documentary in their desire to reach as much audience and appreciation as possible of this previously untold story of a noble humanitarian effort.