Monday, May 11, 2009

Adolf Eichmann is captured in Argentina by Israeli MOSSAD - May 11, 1960

Adolf Eichmann on trial
Adolf Eichmann on trial

Karl Adolf Eichmann (1906–1962), sometimes referred to as "the architect of the Holocaust", was a Nazi and SS-Obersturmbannführer (equivalent to Lieutenant Colonel). Because of his organizational talents and ideological reliability, he was charged by Reinhard Heydrich (chief of the Reich Main Security Office) with the task of facilitating and managing the logistics of mass deportation of Jews to ghettos and extermination camps in Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe. After the war, he travelled to Argentina using a fraudulently obtained laissez-passer issued by the International Red Cross and lived there under a false identity working for Mercedes-Benz until 1960. He was captured by Israeli Mossad operatives in Argentina and tried in an Israeli court on 15 criminal charges, including crimes against humanity and war crimes. He was convicted and hanged in 1962.

Heydrich disclosed to Eichmann in autumn 1941 that all the Jews in German-controlled Europe were to be exterminated. In 1942, Heydrich ordered Eichmann to attend the Wannsee Conference as recording secretary, where Germany's anti-Semitic measures were set down into an official policy of genocide. Eichmann was given the position of Transportation Administrator of the "Final Solution to the Jewish Question", which put him in charge of all the trains which would carry Jews to the death camps in the territory of occupied Poland.

In 1944, he was sent to Hungary after Germany had occupied that country in fear of a Soviet invasion. Eichmann at once went to work deporting Jews, sending 430,000 Hungarians to their deaths in the gas chambers.

By 1945, Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler (head of the SS) had ordered Jewish extermination to be halted and evidence of the Final Solution to be destroyed. Eichmann was appalled by Himmler's turnabout, and continued his work in Hungary against official orders.

At the end of World War II, Eichmann was captured by the U.S. Army, who did not know that this man who presented himself as "Otto Eckmann" was in fact a much bigger catch. Early in 1946, he escaped from U.S. custody and hid in various parts of Germany for a few years. In 1950 he obtained an International Committee of the Red Cross humanitarian passport in Geneva and an Argentine visa, both issued to "Riccardo Klement, technician." He boarded a ship heading for Argentina on July 14, 1950. For the next 10 years, he worked in several odd jobs in the Buenos Aires area (from factory foreman, to junior water engineer and professional rabbit farmer). Eichmann also brought his family to Argentina.

In 1959, Mossad (the national intelligence agency of Israel) was informed that Eichmann was in Buenos Aires under the name Ricardo Klement (Clement) and began an effort to locate his exact whereabouts. Through relentless surveillance, it was concluded that Ricardo Klement was, in fact, Adolf Eichmann. The Israeli government then approved an operation to capture Eichmann and bring him to Jerusalem for trial as a war criminal. The Mossad agents continued their surveillance of Eichmann through the first months of 1960 until it was judged safe to take him down, even watching as he delivered flowers to his wife on their 25th wedding anniversary on March 21.

Eichmann was kidnapped by a team of Mossad and Shabak (Israel Security Agency) agents in a suburb of Buenos Aires on May 11, 1960, as part of a covert operation.

In June 1960, after unsuccessful secret negotiations with Israel, Argentina requested an urgent meeting of the United Nations Security Council, to protest what Argentina regarded as the "violation of the sovereign rights of the Argentine Republic".

The legal basis of the charges against Eichmann was the 1950 "Nazi and Nazi Collaborators (Punishment) Law".

Eichmann's trial before an Israeli court in Jerusalem began on April 11, 1961. He was indicted on 15 criminal charges, including crimes against humanity, crimes against the Jewish people and membership in an outlawed organization.

After 14 weeks of testimony with more than 1,500 documents, 100 prosecution witnesses (90 of whom were Nazi concentration camp survivors) and dozens of defense depositions delivered by diplomatic couriers from 16 different countries, the Eichmann trial ended on August 14. At that point, the judges began deliberations in seclusion. On December 11, the three judges announced their verdict: Eichmann was convicted on all counts. Eichmann had said to the court that he expected the death penalty. On December 15, the court imposed a death sentence. Eichmann appealed the verdict, mostly relying on legal arguments about Israel's jurisdiction and the legality of the laws under which he was charged. He also claimed that he was protected by the principle of "Acts of State" and repeated his "superior orders" defense. On May 29, 1962 Israel's Supreme Court, sitting as a Court of Criminal Appeal, rejected the appeal and upheld the District Court's judgment on all counts. In rejecting his appeal again claiming that he was only "following orders", the court stated that, "Eichmann received no superior orders at all. He was his own superior and he gave all orders in matters that concerned Jewish affairs.

Eichmann was hanged a few minutes before midnight on May 31, 1962, at a prison in Ramla, Israel. This remains the only civil execution ever carried out in Israel, which has a general policy of not using the death penalty. Eichmann allegedly refused a last meal, preferring instead a bottle of Carmel, a dry red Israeli wine. He consumed about half of the bottle. He also refused to don the traditional black hood for his execution.

Shortly after the execution, Eichmann's body was cremated in a specially designed oven. The next morning, on June 1, his ashes were scattered at sea over the Mediterranean, in international waters. This was to ensure that there could be no future memorial and that no nation would serve as his final resting place.

Since Eichmann's death, historians have speculated on some questions about his life. The critical question is how responsible Eichmann was for the implementation of the Holocaust. Some argue that Eichmann knew exactly what he was doing, while others state that he was unfairly judged and that he was doing only his duty as an administrator. Eichmann's son, Ricardo, condemned his father's actions, and said he harboured no resentment toward Israel for executing his father. Eichmann himself said he joined the SS not because he agreed or disagreed with its ethos, but because he needed to build a career.

Source: Wikipedia (All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License)

1 comment:

  1. While it is true that some of the nazis went to Argentina, they also did spread in all over the world and it can be unfair to say that they are all there. I travelled to Argentina 2 years ago and I stayed in a buenos aires apartment for 3 months. I have to say people are very respectful and they are angry about what happened in the holocaust. Of course they donpt want any nazis there so they do as much as possible to find and arrest the ones that are still alive.