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Eichmann Trial -- Session 70 -- Witness R. Kagan and E. Goldstein

Film | Accession Number: 1999.A.0087 | RG Number: RG-60.2100.224 | Film ID: 2224

Session 70. The tape begins towards the end of questioning. The judge asks Raya Kagan one last question, concerning human relations between inmates. She answers that in Auschwitz, they survived thanks to friendship and some solidarity.

00:02:52 They call a new witness, Esther Goldstein. She is sworn in, and she answers that she was transported from Hungary to Auschwitz along with her family. Goldstein is asked to identify her and those she knew in a series of photographs, most of them from before they were taken to Auschwitz, or shortly after they arrived. 00:08:38 After describing a number of photographs and identifying many people that she knew, a group of photos are handed to the Judges, who begin to enter them as exhibits. 00:11:33 Goldstein is shown various photos, she describes each of them. The photos do not seem to have anything in common except that they were of Auschwitz. Slowly the court admits all of these into evidence. 00:24:30 Goldstein is asked how many of the people she identified are still alive. She answers that her brother, her sisters, and only one other man survived. 00:25:03 The court walks through her experience of disembarking the trains and entering the camp, followed by discussing the roll calls and the selections of Dr. Mengele. She describes the horrors of living in the camp, including sleeping twelve in a bed and that many eating from the same dish with no utensils. Discussion of the screening of films in the afternoon. The general public cannot attend, except members of the press and Yad Vashem staff.

00:31:52 Court adjourns for a recess.

00:34:22 Tape resumes with the Judges entering once again, only to have it cut off by a slate reading "Eichmann Trial 4.2.2. NTSC-PAL". Afterwards, the same footage begins again.

00:36:10 Eichmann is asked to rise. The Attorney General states that the evidence for the Prosecution is completed, and the Defense may begin. Eichmann is asked whether or not he would like to testify in his own defense, and whether or not he would like to do so under oath. Eichmann answers that he would like to testify under oath. He swears not on any Bible but only by almighty God.

00:42:57 Eichmann is put under oath. Dr. Servatius begins with an opening statement, saying that there are two worlds, one of the unapologetic heights of the rulers and the oppressed lows of the ruled. This was because of the state, its dictator, and nothing else. He says that Eichmann will stand and testify, under oath, with a cross examination, to account for his role in what happened. He says that the executions were ordered by the various Ministries, and that Eichmann could not and would not have acted without those orders. The government was truly responsible for all of these things, and that Eichmann was not part of the ruling elite, but only following orders. He says that it is not the job or the intent of the defense to prove or disprove the guilt of any other peoples or nations; that is the job of the scholars. Servatius says that Eichmann will testify on the methods by which he was brought here, then he will testify to the motives by which he joined the Nazi Party, and then he will prove his innocence based on the Prosecution's documents. The numerous things that happened before Eichmann's arrival will be discussed after that.

01:01:29 Dr. Servatius asks to begin questioning Eichmann as a witness. The details of procedure are gone over. Eichmann is asked and answers that he made the statement that he was brought here of his own free will, but he was forced to make that statement by his captors. He is then asked about his motives of joining the anti-Semitic Nazi Party. Eichmann answers that they were against the Versailles Treaty, and the government that was carrying out the Treaty when they began to rise to power. The Nazis only passed anti-Semitic policies after it was already in power, and Eichmann was in no position to anticipate these policies. Eichmann is asked if he was the planner of a document entered as evidence, and he was. The tape ends suddenly after that.

Film Title
Eichmann Trial
Event:  1961 August 09
Production:  1961 August 09
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 21:56:42
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