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Eichmann Trial -- Session 98 -- Cross-examination of the Accused

Film | Digitized | Accession Number: 1999.A.0087 | RG Number: RG-60.2100.159 | Film ID: 2159

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    Eichmann Trial -- Session 98 -- Cross-examination of the Accused


    Footage begins in the middle of Session 98 during cross examination of the accused by Attorney General Gideon Hausner concerning the death of deportees during transport. Eichmann denies being involved in round-ups and, in particular, the Stettin Affair. When asked by Hausner who did carry out the deportations from Stettin, Eichmann states that it was the local authorities (00:01:28). A document is cited noting that at a meeting in January 1940 it was decided that section IVD4 would deal with deportations (00:03:19) and Eichmann maintains that their job was only to draw up timetables. Hausner goes on to question Eichmann about his section's involvement in handling petitions from Poles who asked not to be deported (00:14:23) noting that there were seven thousand people that petitioned (00:17:29). Eichmann is asked about what he refers to as the "interim" and "long term plans." Hausner continues by questioning the accused about a meeting held on 30 January 1940 (0023:11), the people who attended (00:23:33), and the discussion about the Stettin deportations (00:24:13). Eichmann testifies that unless the meeting concerned timetable matters he did participate.

    The Attorney General turns to the topic of Eichmann's refusal to allow relatives of deportees to send parcels and money to family members in the General Government (00:27:52). Eichmann testifies that he was involved but could not do anything contrary because it was an order (00:28:40). Hausner asks why this matter concerned him and after Eichmann fails to properly answer further questions from the Attorney General, Judge Landau interrupts and tells the accused to answer the questions (00:33:41).

    Landau asks the accused whether or not he ever made proposals or suggestions to Heinrich Müller his superior as the head of Section IV of the Reich Main Security Office. A long discussion ensues concerning Eichmann's duty to make proposals to his superiors as a section head. Eichmann maintains that he did not make suggestions to Müller or anyone else because it was not in his nature. Landau asks Eichmann whether Müller ever asked for his opinion (00:36:16) and Eichmann states that because Müller knew him well and he would never ask since Eichmann was not in the habit of making decisions and giving his opinion (00:36:26). The accused is questioned further about Müller's statement that had they had fifty Eichmann's they would have won the war against the USSR, England, and France (00:39:07) and Heinrich Himmler's statement that they were sending "the master" to Hungary (00:43:01). Judge Halevi asks Eichmann to clarify the fact that although he was a section head, and it was his right and duty to make decisions and give his opinion, he never took this initiative (00:44:53). Eichmann states that this is true but when further questioned by Judge Halevi about whether a section head should take the initiative or be dismissed, Eichmann states that he was good at his job and had he taken any initiative he could have been promoted but stayed in his position because he was good at what he was assigned to do (00:47:53). This entire section of footage beginning at questioning concerning Eichmann's refusal to all parcels to be sent is duplicate footage also found on Tape 2161 (from 00:00:24 to 00:20:31).

    Footage continues with more questioning concerning Eichmann's refusal to give his opinion as a section head and his ability to properly run his office. Hausner resumes the cross examination by asking Eichmann about issuing instructions regarding the allowance of deportees to bring money to the General Government (00:52:51) and whether or not section IVB4 suggested to Himmler, in regards to the Lublin-Zamosc district, that Poles be divided into four groups, that their children be taken away from them, and that those that were not able bodied be sent to Auschwitz (00:54:26). Eichmann testifies that these directions were issued but not by IVB4 (00:54:51). The Attorney General shows the accused a document showing that the instructions and proposal came from IVB4 but Eichmann continues to deny the claim, stating that it was handled by section IVB4a. Hausner goes on to tell Eichmann that Himmler was asking to seize Polish children up to ten and that Eichmann counter proposed to take children up to the age of fourteen (00:56:27) which the accused states again did not come from IVB4. There is a series of questions concerning whether Eichmann was notified of Himmler's orders regarding Cracow (00:59:15) and if he passed these instructions to implementing personnel such as Krumey (00:59:50).

    The following footage is duplicate footage also found on Tape 2160 (from 00:00:37 to 00:02:50). The footage on Tape 2160 is more complete. The remaining footage concerns whether Eichmann was aware that the people on these transports died in the dozens (01:01:57). The accused states that his section was not responsible for the round-ups, the local authorities were responsible. Hausner notes that these people died during transport not before (01:04:11) and children were taken out of the cars dead and he, Eichmann, was responsible for the organization of these transports (01:04:38). The accused begins to answer but the footage cuts and only part of his answer is given. The English translation of his final statement in this footage is not given.
    Film Title
    Eichmann Trial
    Event:  1961 July 17
    Production:  1961 July 17
    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
    00:00:13:00 to 01:05:13:00
    Film Format
    • Master
    • Master 2159 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
      Master 2159 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
      Master 2159 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
      Master 2159 Video: Digital Betacam - NTSC - large
    • Preservation
    • Preservation 2159 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - large
      Preservation 2159 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - large
      Preservation 2159 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - large
      Preservation 2159 Video: Betacam SP - NTSC - large

    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: 2428
    Source Archive Number: VTEI 116
    Record last modified:
    2024-02-21 07:46:28
    This page:

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