Ben-gurion Orders Transfer of Eichmann’s Manuscript to State Archives

A bulky volume comprising many hundreds of pages written by Adolf Eichmann in his prison cell, in the months prior to his conviction and execution in Israel for his role in the murder of 6,000,000 European Jews, has been deposited in the Israel State Archives by order of Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, it was disclosed here today. Until now, the manuscript had been held by prison authorities.

Yad Vashem, the Israel center engaged in documenting the Nazi holocaust, had earlier sought the manuscript for its own archives, arguing that it would be an important asset for its work if the manuscript were placed at the disposal of researchers. The Premier, on the other hand, felt that, since the trial had been conducted by the State, everything relevant to the prosecution should be placed in the State archives. He issued the ruling after Justice Minister Dov Joseph pressed him for a decision.

The contents of the manuscript were not disclosed, and may not be disclosed for a long time. However, it was understood that they combine Eichmann’s memoirs with reflections on Nazism and other subjects, representing an attempt by Eichmann to shed his own responsibility for the Nazi murders.

Dr. Robert Servatius, Eichmann’s attorney, referred to the manuscript during the appeal against the conviction, intimating that they would reveal Eichmann’s true state of mind and his central concern for avoiding recurrences of the indiscriminate murders. Dr. Servatius had sought to get possession of the manuscript for the purpose of publishing it, to help meet the costs of the defense and provide an income for the Eichmann family. His request, however, was denied by the Israel authorities.

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