On July 8 2019, CUFI posted a video on its YouTube channel with the title, “CUFI Summit 2019 View from Washington with Ambassador John Bolton and Secretary Mike Pompeo“.
Exactly 2 hours and 20 minutes into the video (click the YouTube video above), Rev. Chris Edmonds tells us about his dad Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds, and his courage and boldness on that January day in 1945 where Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds saved 200 Jewish American POW soldiers from certain death in a POW camp in Nazi Germany.
Two months later Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds saved all 1290 American POWs (prisoners of war). The Germans left all the Americans alone in the POW camp.
Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds had all the reasons and excuses to hand over his men to the Nazis – being unarmed, suffering, starvation (500 calories per day), humiliation, beatings – but he wouldn’t hand over his men, he refused, he stood his ground, he fought unarmed, and although all his men were unarmed too, he kept fighting with the only thing he had in the POW camp – sheer righteous character and determination, and that was the way he “unarmed” the Nazi commander and saved all his men.
Somehow I find this POW rescue more impressive than when soldiers who save their brothers in arms armed on the battlefield, knowing they are not alone, and will soon receive support from land and air, and within hours they make a difference. That was not the case with Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds in the POW camp, his situation was dire, he was all alone and unarmed with his 1290 men, no help to call, no radio contact. Nothing.
In 2016 Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds became the fifth American citizen and the first American soldier to be honored Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem.
Link to Yad Vashem: