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Eichmann Trial -- Sessions 49, 51, 53, 55, 56 -- Witness testimony

Film | Accession Number: 1999.A.0087 | RG Number: RG-60.2100.061 | Film ID: 2060

Session 49. Testimony from Dr. Ernst Abeles, who describes receiving hundreds of postcards from deportees who had been sent to the extermination camps. Abeles tells of when he first learned about the existence of the camps (00:03:36) and describes the "Europe Plan," an attempt by the Jewish community to pay a large sum of money to stop deportations all over Europe (00:05:15). Section on the "Europe Plan" is abbreviated - duplicate footage found on Tape 2059.

Session 51. Testimony from Pinhas Freudiger, who gives an account of what happened to Jews who escaped from Slovakia and reached Hungary and the relationship between his own family and the ruling circles in Hungary. Bach asks about his first meetings with heads of the Slovakian Jewish community (00:07:57) as well as his contact with Dr. Abeles (00:10:12). Freudiger describes his meetings with Eichmann's deputy, Dieter Wisliceny, to negotiate for the end of deportations. He tells of the events of March 19, 1944 when the Germans occupied Hungary (this is an abbreviated version of footage found on Tape 2061 at 00:44:13.

Session 53. Footage resumes with testimony from witness Ze'ev Sapir from Munkacs. He recounts what happened to his family and describes the selections at Auschwitz. There are various shots of Eichmann. Part of the testimony is missing; it continues with Sapir showing the number tattoo that he received in Auschwitz. This duplicates footage found on Tape 2064 at 00:42:03 but is more complete. Sapir leaves the stand (00:25:38) and court adjourns. The judges confer and exit the courtroom. Eichmann is escorted out of the booth.

Session 55. The beginning of the session is missing and footage shows the middle of testimony from Gustave Gilbert who speaks in German and English during this section. Gilbert served as a psychologist at Nuremberg and interviewed Goering and the other war criminals on trial there. He describes how people, like the accused, attempted to hide their war crimes following the war or to blame someone else. There is a short clip of the lawyers for both the prosecution and the defense standing and Eichmann leaving the booth. Gilbert's testimony is repeated but continues on and is more complete.

Session 56. A small part of testimony from witness Joel Brand who speaks in German. Brand identifies Eichmann in the courtroom and describes a meeting he had with Eichmann and Becher.

Film Title
Eichmann Trial
Event:  May 23-June 29, 1961
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: 2021-06-03 12:45:27
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