‘Forgiving Dr. Mengele’


For 40 years after suffering at the hands of Josef Mengele, who tortured her and her twin sister in his monstrous experiments at Auschwitz, Eva Kor continued to bear the psychological pain. Then she forgave him—and every other Nazi. This uneven but riveting documentary chronicles Kor’s journey to a kind of grace little understood (or appreciated) by many fellow Jews and survivors. Her critics include those who find the Nazis’ atrocities unforgivable and those who feel that Kor has no right to speak for other survivors or for the dead. But the real problem seems to be a fundamental difference in the definition of forgiveness, which Kor sees as a way of detaching from a perpetrator’s power, and healing, rather than an excuse or a pardon. Meanwhile, Kor’s own capacity to forgive is challenged by the current state of affairs in the Middle East, which is where Mengele heads for true importance.