Israel displays Adolf Eichmann items

2011-12-12 22:37

kalahari.com

Jerusalem - Fifty years after Holocaust mastermind Adolf Eichmann was convicted in an epic trial that helped shape Israel's national psyche, the Israeli parliament on Monday put on display for the first time dozens of artefacts from the daring 1960 operation in Argentina that captured the Nazi criminal.

The gripping public testimony during the trial by more than 100 Jews who survived torture and deprivation captured world attention and vividly brought to life the horrors of the Holocaust.

It also brought to light stories of Jewish bravery and resistance that shattered the myth of Jews meekly walking to their deaths. As a result, more survivors went public with their experiences, which greatly helped research and commemoration efforts.

"We carried out justice, partial, reduced, even minuscule compared to the crime, but of tremendous symbolism and the symbolism is that those who murder millions and those who plan the murder of millions will pay the price," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the opening of the exhibit.

"The capture and the bringing to trial of Eichmann was a turning point in which the state of Israel and the Jewish people began carrying out justice against their tormentors."

Known as the "architect of the Holocaust" for his role in coordinating the Nazi genocide policy, Eichmann fled Germany after World War II and assumed the name Ricardo Klement in Argentina.

He was hunted down and captured by Israeli Mossad agents in an operation that remains one of the most defining episodes in the country's turbulent history. Eichmann was hanged after his 1961 trial in Jerusalem.

The exhibit, which will be on display in parliament for three weeks before moving to a Tel Aviv museum, showcases items that had been classified and stashed away for decades: the cameras used by Mossad agents to track Eichmann, the briefcase in which they carried fake license plates, the keys to Eichmann's Buenos Aires apartment and the forged Israeli passport - with the alias Zeev Zichroni - his captors used to smuggle him out of Argentina.

Broke silence

There are also original photos, documents and the gloves used to nab Eichmann, as well as personal effects found on Eichmann's body - a comb, a pocket knife and a plastic cigarette holder.

The agents who participated in the operation slipped into Argentina as part of an official Israeli delegation that arrived for Argentina's 150th anniversary celebrations, said Neomi Izhar, the exhibit's historian.

Rafi Eitan, who headed the operation, said he identified Eichmann by searching his body for distinctive scars on his arm and stomach.

"Notice how back then with primitive means we carried out an operation like this," Eitan, 85, told The Associated Press.

"There were no communications, there was no internet, there were no computers, no weapons and this exhibit shows that even with primitive means you can do great things."

During the 1961 trial, Eichmann sat on a wooden chair inside a bulletproof glass booth - also on display in parliament - and calmly listened to the testimonies of Holocaust survivors.

Eichmann's defence was that he was merely following orders. Covering the trial for The New Yorker, the political theorist Hannah Arendt famously coined the phrase "the banality of evil" to describe Eichmann.

Six million Jews were killed by the German Nazis and their collaborators during World War II, many of them following Eichmann's blueprint drawn up for liquidating the entire Jewish population of Europe.

Eichmann was convicted in December 1961 of war crimes and crimes against humanity. He was hanged the following year - the only time Israel has carried out a death sentence.

Until they heard the public testimony of Jews who survived torture and deprivation, many Israelis looked down on the survivors as weak victims, at odds with the macho image of the "new Jew" of Israel.

The emotional descriptions of the horrors they survived changed the perception for many Israelis and allowed more survivors to go public.

"The Eichmann trial broke through the wall of silence," said Parliament Speaker Reuven Rivlin.

- SAPA

Read more on:    benjamin netanyahu  |  israel  |  argentina
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
11 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

ANCYL: Not voting would be blasphemy

Not voting in the forthcoming elections would be blasphemy, the ANCYL says in a statement commemorating the 50th anniversary of struggle icon Nelson Mandela's Rivonia trial speech.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Nokia N9

The Nokia N9 has a beautiful one-piece, unibody design where...

From R2899.85

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There may be a break through, either through quiet contemplative time to connect to your deep side or forced on you by...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.