LITTMAN, SOL

LITTMAN, SOL (1920– ), Canadian journalist and community activist. Littman was born in Toronto, Ontario, to East European immigrant parents. He earned a B.A. in sociology from the University of Toronto in 1946, an M.A. in sociology and anthropology from the University of Wisconsin in 1950, and a degree in social work from the University of Toronto in 1952. Littman had multiple careers. In 1955 he joined the staff of the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith (ADL) in the United States and for 13 years was involved in tracking right-wing and antisemitic groups and exposing discrimination in housing, employment, and social organizations. In 1968 Littman returned to Toronto to head ADL in Canada, later renamed the League for Human Rights. He spearheaded the organization's campaign against antisemitism and social discrimination. In 1971 Littman turned to journalism, first as editor for two years of the Canadian Jewish News and writing a bi-weekly column on the arts for the Toronto Star. In 1973 he moved to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation as a news documentary maker and in 1976 he joined the editorial staff of the Toronto Star, where he often wrote editorials on social issues. Taking early retirement to write, in 1982 he published War Criminal on Trial, the story of Helmut Rauca, the first Canadian deported from Canada to stand trial for war crimes. From 1985 to 1999 Littman was Canadian representative of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and pressured the Canadian government on the prosecution of Nazi war criminals who entered Canada after World War II. In large part through his efforts, in 1985 the government of Brian Mulroney established the Deschênes Commission of Inquiry on War Criminals in Canada. In 2003 Littman published his second book, Pure Soldiers or Sinister Legion, about the Ukrainian Waffen-SS division, many of whose members were allowed to resettle in Canada after World War II. (Harold Troper (2nd ed.)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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