Prosecutor Asks Court for ‘just and Truthful Verdict’ on Eichmann
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Prosecutor Asks Court for ‘just and Truthful Verdict’ on Eichmann

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Attorney General Gideon Hausner today completed his three-day summation of the case against Adolf Eichmann and demanded conviction of the former Gestapo colonel on all 15 points of the indictment against him.

“I ask you, judges of Israel to render a just and truthful verdict,” he told the three-judge court. He emphasized that all 15 points of the indictment “have been proved” during the four-month trial. He did not demand the death penalty as provided by Israel’s law against Nazis, because the court in Israel does not permit such a demand until the defendant is convicted.

At the close of the prosecution summation, the trial was adjourned until Monday when Dr. Robert Servatius, Eichmann’s West German defense counsel, will present his summation. This will be completed on the same day and the trial, which began last April 11, will be ended. The three justices will then retire to begin consideration of the mountain of documentary and eye-witness testimony. Their verdict, which is expected to be one of guilty, is not expected before October. Dr. Servatius has indicated he will appeal the verdict.

The prosecutor, winding up his summation, cited affidavits presented by proxy by former associates of the defendant, as well as statements made before various postwar tribunals by condemned Nazis. “We have to remember that these people had nothing to gain by implicating others,” the prosecutor told the court. “They admitted their guilt and knew they would hang. They should be believed.”

The prosecutor scoffed at Eichmann’s defense claim that he was a “small sausage” in the vast Nazi murder machinery. He said Eichmann had answered incriminating evidence against him from former Nazi associates with “subterfuges, ruses and lies.” Under every accusation, the prosecutor declared, Eichmann immediately found his bearings and gave the best answer. These answers, the prosecutor said, “were often absurd, but that was the fault of the facts, not of Eichmann’s purported mediocrity.”

“He who can react under cross-examination the way the accused has done is not a small man,” Mr. Hausner told the court. “This is a man of serious and considerable intelligence who tried to come out of the web of evidence which could convict him. His evil personality appeared again and again in his clever and cunning answers.”


Terming Eichmann’s claim that he was never an anti-Semite “absurd,” the prosecutor said that the defendant “acted willingly, lustfully and zestfully to the very end” of his career as head of the Gestapo department for Jewish Affairs. He pointed out that Eichmann was not willing even to consent to one proposal Hitler was ready to consider — that Jews with service records would not be forced to witness the executions of members of their families, a favorite bit of Nazi sadism.

In the final portion of his summation, the prosecutor paid tribute to the Europeans who sought, at the risk of merciless torture and death, to save Jews from the Nazi murder. “We shall never forget the nobility and greatness of the entire Danish nation, its King and its underground who helped Jews to escape to Sweden,” the prosecutor said. “We will remember the Norwegians who smuggled Jews out of their country at the risk of their lives, the brave Belgians and the magnanimous Swedes.

“We remember Raoul Wallenberg who single handedly stood up to Eichmann and saved thousands of our people. We remember the Dutch nation which went on strike for the Jews, the Dutch church, and the Italians who protected the Jews, especially in the convents and monasteries. We will remember the Poles who risked their lives, the French Maquis, the Lithuanians, the Yugoslavs, the Greeks and the undergrounds and partisans in all of occupied Europe.”

“Their names and their deeds will always be engraved in our memories,” the prosecutor said.” There is no consolation for the third of the nation that has fallen,” he added “but there is solace in the fact that the Jews knew how to face the enemy with dignity and pride. These victims cannot be brought back to life but there must be justice for what was perpetrated against them. I am proud of the fact that the days have come when a citizen of Israel can speak the language of justice to an evildoer.”

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