Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research




Skip to main content

Eichmann Trial -- Session 100 -- Cross-examination of the Accused

Film | Accession Number: 1999.A.0087 | RG Number: RG-60.2100.169 | Film ID: 2169

The camera fades in onto Eichmann seated in the booth during recess. There is a shot of the prosecution desk with Hausner, Bach, and Assistant to the Attorney General Ya'akov Robinson seated (00:00:48) followed by various shots of the accused, the prosecution, and the courtroom. Assistant State Attorney Bar-Or enters and walks to the prosecution table (00:02:14). Servatius is shown arranging documents on his table (00:05:15). All rise as the judges enter the courtroom (00:06:45) and the attorneys bow to the judges (00:06:52). Attorney General Gideon Hausner resumes cross examination of Eichmann by questioning him about the drafting of a letter by Bilfinger of department IIA2, with signature by Reinhard Heydrich, authorizing Eichmann to correct the document in order that the matter be overseen by the accused (00:07:40). Judge Halevi interrupts Hausner and asks him for evidence concerning the representative of the Foreign Ministry who acted in the General Government (00:10:04).

Cross examination continues with the Attorney General questioning Eichmann about knowing the absorption capabilities of concentration camps in the West, Bergen-Belsen for example (00:11:42) and whether he held authoritative control over the camp (00:13:39). Eichmann's activities in Theresienstadt are raised (00:14:15) and the accused is asked about his involvement in making arrangements for the beds (00:15:00) and the mail (00:17:49) in the camp. Eichmann testifies that he was informed of postal difficulties in Theresienstadt by the Council of Elders and reported on the matter but Hausner argues that by "difficulties" he means death sentences (00:18:26). The accused retorts that he was not involved and is again asked by Hausner whether he meant death sentences. There is some visual interference from 00:20:46 to 00:21:09.

Footage cuts (00:21:10 to 00:21:23) Footage of Hausner asking the accused again whether by "difficulties" he meant death sentences is repeated. None of the session is missing. Eichmann admits that there were executions in Theresienstadt because of the strict postal censorship and that Edelstein, one of the members of the Council of Elders, asked him to lift the postal ban and a few days later the ban was relaxed.

The following footage is duplicate footage also found on Tape 2167 (from 00:16:15 to 00:24:37). Hausner asks the accused who handed out death sentences in Theresienstadt. The accused states that he learned from the daily reports from the Council of Elders that it was the Commander of the Security Police and the SD in Prague (00:22:34 on this tape and at 00:16:20 on Tape 2167). Eichmann is then asked a series of questions regarding whether he knows any German laws which authorized the Senior Commanders of the Security Police and the SD to impose death sentences (00:23:47 on this tape and at 00:17:33 on Tape 2167), the Commander or Commandant of an extermination camp to exterminate people (00:24:50 on this tape and at 00:18:36 on Tape 2167), or Globocnik to exterminate hundreds of thousands or a quarter million people from the General Government (00:26:08 on this tape and at 00:19:54 on Tape 2167). He is also asked whether he knows any laws authorizing himself to carry out deportations (00:27:18 on this tape and at 00:21:04 on Tape 2167). The accused states that he either does not know or was not involved in these matters. Hausner continues, asking whether the accused cared if what he was doing was illegal or not (00:27:55 on this tape and at 00:21:41 on Tape 2167). Eichmann replies that he did what he was ordered to do and the subject of whether or not his instructions were or were not illegal never came up in conversation.

Questions turn to the accused's activities in Monaco (00:30:51). Eichmann is asked if he had contacts with the government in Monaco without informing the Foreign Ministry (00:32:21) and about pursuing actions against Jewish refugees in Monaco (00:35:55). In reply, Eichmann states that he had absolutely no contact with officials in the Monaco government (00:32:29) and does not know about actions against Jewish refugees there (00:36:18). Hausner presents a document to the accused showing that he had informed Helmut Knochen about the Italian matter, in reference to the Monaco Jewish refugees (00:39:45) and proceeds to ask the accused who he was referring to in the document as "I." In previous sessions Eichmann had argued that the use of "I" in a document meant on behalf of the chief of the Reich Main Security Office, Security Police and the SD and was discussed at length. Hausner again brings up this topic to show that Eichmann was in fact making reference to himself and his own orders not Heinrich Müller (head of Section IV) or Reinhard Heydrich (Chief of the Security Police and the SD).

Cross examination continues and Eichmann is asked about a man named Reischauer (00:45:21). The accused identifies him as a Senior Government Counselor in the Party Chancellery, or in the Chancellery of the Fuehrer's deputy (00:45:27). He is further questioned about Reischauer's involvement in matters concerning people of mixed blood (00:47:30), whether he cooperated with Reischauer (00:48:22), and about knowing of his fanatical opposition to mixed marriages (00:51:41). Eichmann acknowledges that he did meet with Reischauer but that he was not involved in matters concerning people of mixed blood. He also states that he was aware of Reischauer's attitude towards such people but did not share the same opinion (00:52:01). Hausner notes it was general knowledge that during the war Hitler often overlooked instances in which soldiers were of mixed parentage (00:53:11) but Reischauer severely opposed this attitude (00:53:40) and goes on to ask Eichmann for his opinion (00:54:06). Eichmann testifies that he did not share Reischauer's opinion and believed that the issue would be resolved naturally (00:54:13). A document is presented and read in German by Hausner, a letter from a Dr. Lösener, the Ministry of the Interior's expert on Jewish Affairs, listing known anti-Semites including Eichmann (00:57:07). Eichmann does not deny the letter itself but notes how strange it is that Lösener himself is not on the list (00:58:40). The remaining footage concerns Eichmann's fervent fanaticism against people of mixed blood.

Film Title
Eichmann Trial
Event:  1961 July 18
Production:  1961 July 18
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 22:00:54
This page: