Sunday 22 July 2018

'Courage is needed in the face of current political challenges' - Irish film director Lenny Abrahamson

Pictured at the launch of his book I Will Not Serve: The priest who said No to Hitler”, David Rice with Irish film and television director, Lenny Abrahamson at Hodges & Figgis, Dawson St.
PIC COLIN O’RIORDAN
Pictured at the launch of his book I Will Not Serve: The priest who said No to Hitler”, David Rice with Irish film and television director, Lenny Abrahamson at Hodges & Figgis, Dawson St. PIC COLIN O’RIORDAN

Ryan Nugent

ACCLAIMED Irish film director, Lenny Abrahamson says courage is needed in the face of current political challenges - as he launched a book on a priest who said no to Hitler.

Irish author, David Rice penned the book, ‘I Will Not Serve’ about priest, Franz Reinisch who refused to take the oath to Hitler in April, 1942.

Jewish director, Abrahamson - who is a close family friend of Mr Rice - spoke at the launch at Hodges Figgis.

“At the moment we face a lot of political challenges globally and what’s needed in the face of those challenges is a certain kind of courage and I think what Franz Reinisch - the subject of David’s book - demonstrates is an inspiration in that he was prepared to sacrifice everything to resist what he knew was wrong.”

Asked what issues he was referring to, Abrahamson referred to the rise of national, racism and populism throughout Europe.

"I think there's a lot of nationalism behind Brexit which I think is a political disaster. I'm a great believer in the European Union, it's part of what's kept us peaceful since the Second World War and I hate to see that being undermined," he said.

He said there was a shift in the United States towards "disrespect for rule of law, disrespect for human rights, disrespect for diversity. All of those things, are to me very worrying.

"Nobody is facing the dangers Franz Reinisch faced in Nazi Germany for opposing their regime but these things happen quickly and I think being aware of that shift and those changes and those dangers is very important at the moment."

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