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Eichmann Trial -- Session 95 -- Cross-examination of the Accused

Film | Digitized | Accession Number: 1999.A.0087 | RG Number: RG-60.2100.147 | Film ID: 2147

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    Eichmann Trial -- Session 95 -- Cross-examination of the Accused


    Footage begins near the end of Session 95. Attorney General Hausner questions the accused about a book written by Gerhard Boldt. Boldt had criticized Hitler throughout the war. Hausner reads a statement given by Eichmann in 1955 that Boldt should be flayed alive for his criticism of Hitler and it was because of him that the war was lost. Eichmann testifies that this statement was correct but asks that it be kept in context (00:01:36).

    Judge Halevi asks Eichmann if Boldt had broken his oath of loyalty after Hitler's death (00:03:08). The accused replies no and explains that the reason for his statement was because it was indicated that Boldt had criticized Hitler during the war when he was still alive. When asked by Judge Halevi if a person is released from their oath of loyalty after Hitler's death, Eichmann replies in the affirmative stating that he is also released from his oath (00:04:41). This is duplicate footage also found on tape #2148 (from 00:00:41 to 00:05:17).

    Hausner asks Eichmann about still being furious with Boldt in 1955 (00:05:17) and Eichmann replies that he felt that oath breaking was one of the worst crimes that can be committed (00:05:39).The Attorney General follows up Eichmann's statement by asking if he regards it as a greater crime than the murder of six million Jews, including one and a half million children (00:06:07). Eichmann responds stating of course not but that he did not deal with extermination (00:06:22).

    Hausner turns the topic to questions regarding the criminality of those involved in the extermination of the Jews (00:07:45). Eichmann does not give a clear answer to Hausner's question and when asked if he regarded Höss as a criminal after seeing what he was doing in Auschwitz (00:08:19), Eichmann states that he had told Höss he could never do his job (00:08:30). Hausner continues to ask Eichmann, in German, how he regarded Höss without a sufficient answer from the accused. Finally Eichmann states that he pitied him (00:09:47).

    Hausner tells the accused that he can not evade his questions regarding his feelings towards the extermination process and those involved (00:11:30). Eichmann replies that it depends on the individual involved and that it is not up to him to pass judgment on others who received these orders (00:11:53). This is duplicate footage also found on Tape 2148 (at 00:05:17 to 00:07:33). The footage on Tape 2148 is less complete.

    Hausner asks the accused about a statement he made during his interrogation in which he had stated that had the Reichsfuehrer told him his father was a traitor he would have personally shot him (00:13:49). Eichmann replies that he probably would have if he was presented with proof (00:14:16). Hausner continues asking if it was proved to him that the Jews had to be exterminated (00:14:33). Eichmann testifies that he did not exterminate the Jews and plans, after the trial, to put all of his views into a book for the next generations (00:14:37). Judge Landau tells Eichmann that it is his duty to tell the court everything he would have put into this book (00:17:30). Eichmann replies to Judge Landau that he considered the extermination of the Jews to be murder and one of the most heinous crimes in history (00:18:10).

    Judge Halevi then asks if this is something that he believed in the past or only in the present (00:19:21). Eichmann gives a long reply stating that he was shocked by the murder of the Jews and had asked repeatedly to be released from his duties. He goes on to state that he never thought that the solution to the Jewish question was justified but was unfortunately bound by his oath of loyalty (00:19:33 the translation into Hebrew and English begins at 00:23:02). This is duplicate footage also found on Tape 2148 (from 00:07:33 to 00:14:57 the Hebrew and English translation begins at 00:11:12). The footage on Tape 2148 is more complete.
    Film Title
    Eichmann Trial
    Event:  1961 July 13
    Production:  1961 July 13
    Jerusalem, Israel
    Accessed at United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of The Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archives of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
    Director: Leo Hurwitz
    Producer: Milton Fruchtman
    Camera Operator: Rolf M. Kneller
    Camera Operator: F. Csaznik
    Camera Operator: J. Jonilowicz
    Camera Operator: J. Kalach
    Camera Operator: Emil Knebel
    Producer: Capital Cities Broadcasting Corporation
    Emil Knebel was a cinematographer known for Andante (2010), Adam (1973), and Wild Is My Love (1963). He was one of the cameramen who recorded daily coverage of the Eichmann trial in Jerusalem (produced by Capital Cities Broadcasting Corp and later held academic positions in Israel and New York teaching filmmaking at universities. Refer to CV in file.

    Physical Details

    English German Hebrew
    B&W / Color
    Black & White
    Image Quality
    Time Code
    00:00:24:00 to 00:26:55:00
    Film Format
    • Master
    • Master 2147 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
      Master 2147 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
      Master 2147 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
      Master 2147 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
    • Preservation
    • Preservation 2147 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - small
      Preservation 2147 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - small
      Preservation 2147 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - small
      Preservation 2147 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - small

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    You do not require further permission from the Museum to access this archival media.
    Public Domain
    Conditions on Use
    To the best of the Museum's knowledge, this material is in the public domain. You do not require further permission from the Museum to reproduce or use this material.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Film Provenance
    Capital Cities Broadcasting Corporation recorded the proceedings of the Adolf Eichmann trial in 1961. The original recording was made on two-inch format videotape. One set of videotapes contained selected portions of the trial for distribution to television stations. The "selected portions" version remained in Israel and was later turned over to the Israel State Archives. Capital Cities Broadcasting retained the set of videotapes containing the complete trial proceedings at offices in New York City until 1965, when they gave the videotapes to the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith. The Anti-Defamation League, in turn, gave the complete set to the Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archive at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 1972. With a grant from the Revson Foundation, Hebrew University transferred the two-inch videotapes to U-Matic format. During the transfer process, Hebrew University created three duplicate sets. One set was given to the Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archive, one to the Israel State Archives, and one set to the Jewish Museum in New York City. In 1995, the Israel State Archives transferred the trial footage to digital videoformat with a grant from the Israeli Prime Minister's Office. Three subsequent digital videotape copies resulted from this transfer of footage. The Israel State Archives retained one digital copy and a second set was deposited at the Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archive at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The Steven Spielberg Film and Video Archive at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum received the third set of digital videotapes in May 1999.
    See official transcripts, published in "The Trial of Adolf Eichmann", Vol. I-V, State of Israel, Ministry of Justice, Jerusalem, 1994. Also available online at the Nizkor Project.
    Copied From
    2" Quad
    Film Source
    Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archive
    File Number
    Legacy Database File: 2416
    Source Archive Number: VTEI 336
    Record last modified:
    2024-02-21 07:46:44
    This page:

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