washingtonpost: The Vatican announced Monday that it would open up its secret archives on the World War II papacy of Pope Pius XII, whom some scholars have accused of keeping silent about the Holocaust.
Jewish organizations have long called for the archives from this controversial period to be made accessible, accusing the then-pope of turning a blind eye to the systematic persecution of Jews by Nazi Germany and fascist Italy.
“The church isn’t afraid of history,” Pope Francis told members of the archives. He said the period of Pius’s papacy from 1939 to 1958 would be opened on March 2, 2020.
He warned that Pius’s legacy has been treated with “some prejudice and exaggeration.”
According to the Vatican, the pope used behind-the-scenes diplomacy to save Jews in light of the many Catholics living in Nazi-occupied regions.