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Eichmann Trial -- Session 47 -- Testimony of witness Itzchak Nechama about the July 11, 1942 Aktion against the male Jews of Salonika, Greece

Film | Accession Number: 1999.A.0087 | RG Number: RG-60.2100.059 | Film ID: 2058

Opening shot of the courtroom. Adolf Eichmann sits in the booth. Lawyers for the defense and the prosecution are seated at their respective desks with their backs to the camera. The judges enter. All rise and Judge Moshe Landau asks Deputy State Attorney Yaacov Bar-Or to proceed. There appears to have been a brief recess after the entering of many documents into the record and the footage picks up after this.

Itzchak Nechama takes the witness stand (00:01:35) and is sworn in. He testifies about his military service in the Greek army, the demobilization of his unit, and his return to Salonika, where the German army was already present. He speaks about the confiscation of Jewish property such as trucks, books, and radios.

Nechama testifies about the pilfering from Jewish business in the city (00:08:18) and the first Aktion perpertrated against the Jews of Salonika. Some 9,000 Jewish males were instructed to report to Eleftheria Square for work assigments on July 11, 1942. Instead of receiving work details, the Jews were beaten and humiliated. The witness is shown a document ordering the Jews to report for work, a picture of the square, and a picture of water being poured over a man's head to revive him after he had lost consciousness from exhaustion or from being beaten. Both photos are viewed on screen. Other pictures shown to the witness include Jews being forced to mimic actions of an SS man (00:14:33) (shown on screen), a man being whipped, and a picture that shows Itzhak Nechama himself after he was beaten. The camera focuses on defense attorney Robert Servatius looking at some of these pictures during the witness's testimony.

There is a break in the video, skipping a small part of the testimony. Nechama recounts the terrible conditions at Ueberland, a German-owned factory in Greece, where he worked in the quarry (00:27:17). The work was supervised by a man named Mueller. Nechama explains that after he had been at the factory for three weeks, the Jewish community paid off the Germans and he was released (00:28:37). He states that partisans wanted to take revenge on the Germans but Jewish men were placed on guard along the rail lines with the understanding that if the partisans attacked the rail lines the Jews would be shot.

Another break in the video. The footage resumes with a close-up of Eichmann. The camera returns to Mr. Nechama, who recounts how he had to exchange his money before he was sent on a transport to Poland. He notes that the Jews had been told that they were going to a place near Krakow but were sent to Auschwitz. Nechama was sent to Auschwitz, then Mauthausen then Gusen, before being liberated in March 1945 in Wels. He is asked to describe his arrival in Auschwitz (00:32:58) and how many Jews from his transport survived.

Another break. The remaining footage on this tape continues with the entering of documents into evidence.

Film Title
Eichmann Trial
Event:  1961 May 22
Production:  1961 May 22
Jerusalem, Israel
Accessed at United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of The Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archives of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Record last modified: 2022-07-28 21:56:45
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