I was prompted to search for information about Folke Bernadotte after seeing a fascinating documentary of his life on Al Jazeera last night. The name was familiar but the full story of his experiences was a revelation.
Re-blogged from The Esotericcuriosa
Folke Bernadotte was a well-known Swedish diplomat and quasi royal nobleman who was noted for his dedicated negotiations for the release of about 31,000 prisoners from German concentration camps during World War II, including 423 Danish Jews from Theresienstadt released on April 14, 1945. Although the offer was ultimately rejected, in 1945, Folke received an offer of surrender from Germany via Heinrich Himmler.
After the war, Bernadotte was unanimously chosen to be the United Nations Security Council mediator in the Arab-Israeli conflict of 1947-1948. It was while in this role that he was assassinated in Jerusalem in 1948 by the militant Zionist group Lehi, while pursuing his official duties
Folke Bernadotte was born in Stockholm on January 2, 1895, youngest child and second son of Prince Oscar Bernadotte, Count of Wisborg, formerly Prince Oscar of Sweden, Duke of Gotland and his spouse Ebba Henrietta Munck af Fulkila.
A direct descendent in the male line of the Napoleonic Marshal Jean Baptiste Bernadotte, who was elected on August 21, 1810 as the Crown Prince of Sweden & Norway, and who eventually succeeded to the throne as King Karl XIV, on February 5, 1818, Folke was a junior member of the Swedish royal family. Although of morganatic birth, Folke was a grandson of King Oscar II of Sweden and Norway and a nephew of King Gustav V.
The history of the courtship and marriage of Folk’s parents is both romantic and interesting at the same time. Princess Ebba Bernadotte, Folke’s mother, was a Swedish noble, lady in waiting and titular princess…