Grantee in the News | Mar 2024

USC Shoah Foundation gives National Library of Israel full access to Holocaust testimony

Originally published in eJewish Philanthropy

USC Shoah Foundation Executive Director Robert Williams and National Library of Israel Chairman Sallai Meridor sign a memorandum of understanding at the National Library of Israel in Jerusalem on Mar. 4, 2024.


Everyone in Israel will now have full access to the USC Shoah Foundation’s collection of testimonies from more than 52,000 Holocaust survivors and hundreds of survivors of the Oct. 7 terrorist attacks through a new agreement between the organization and the National Library of Israel signed on Monday in Jerusalem.

The new partnership is meant to both provide Israelis with a resource to combat contemporary antisemitism and to serve as a “case study” to demonstrate the viability and need of making the collection fully and freely available to everyone, Shoah Foundation Executive Director Robert J. Williams told eJewishPhilanthropy before the signing of the deal.

Sallai Meridor, National Library of Israel Chairman, said that these testimonies and documents will allow the people exposed to them to “learn about the capacity of human beings in general to let themselves fall to the lowest depths that one can think of, of depravity and cruelty and inhumanity and, at the same time, the zeniths that humans can get to through conscience and courage and hope.”

Williams said he hopes to make the collection available universally by the end of the year.

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