Schifter was the American representative to the U.N. Commission on Human Rights and deputy representative to the U.N. Security Council. He later headed the American Jewish International Relations Institute and the Center for Democracy and Reconciliation in Southeastern Europe.
Schifter was born in Vienna to Polish parents. At the age of 15, he received a visa to go to the United States. The rest of his family died at the hands of the Nazis.
He served in the U.S. Army as one of the Richie Boys, a unit of young Jewish-German refugees who the U.S. Army trained in psychological warfare. He later graduated from Yale Law School.
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