Adolf Eichmann

Adolf Eichmann

Infobox Military Person
name= Adolf Eichmann
lived= birth date|1906|3|19|mf=ydeath date and age|1962|5|31|1906|3|19|mf=y
placeofbirth= Solingen, German Empire
placeofdeath= Ramla, Israel

caption = Adolf Eichmann in his SS uniform, 1933
allegiance= Nazi Germany
branch= Schutzstaffel
rank=Obersturmbannführer, SS
battles=World War II
spouse = Vera Liebl
parents = Adolf Karl Eichmann
Maria Schefferling
children = Klaus Eichmann, Horst Adolf Eichmann, Dieter Helmut Eichmann, Ricardo Francisco Eichmann

Karl Adolf Eichmann (March 19, 1906–May 31, 1962), sometimes referred to as "the architect of the Holocaust", was a Nazi and "SS"-"Obersturmbannführer" (equivalent to Lieutenant Colonel). Due to his organizational talents and ideological reliability, he was charged by "Obergruppenführer" Reinhard Heydrich with the task of facilitating and managing the logistics of mass deportation of Jews to ghettos and extermination camps in Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe. After the war, he travelled to Argentina using a fraudulently obtained laissez-passer issued by the International Red Cross [ [ Nazi abuse of ICRC humanitarian service] ICRC travel document. 31-05-2007 ] [ [ Nazi Eichmann's passport found in Argentina] ABC News. May 30, 2007] and lived there under a false identity working for Mercedes-Benz until the 1960s. He was captured by Israeli Mossad agents in Argentina and tried in Israeli court on fifteen criminal charges, including crimes against humanity and war crimes. He was convicted and hanged in 1962.


Early life

Born in Solingen, Germany, Adolf Eichmann was the son of a businessman and industrialist, Adolf Karl Eichmann, and Maria "née" Schefferling. [His father's name is given as Karl Adolf in many sources. The name Adolf Karl was testified by Eichmann himself [] and accepted by the Israeli court [] [] .] In 1914, his family moved to Linz, Austria, after his mother died. During the First World War, Eichmann's father served in the Austro-Hungarian Army. At the war's conclusion, Eichmann's father returned to the family and had a business in Linz. Eichmann left high school (Realschule) without having graduated and began training to become a mechanic, which he also discontinued. In 1923 he started working in the mining company of his father, from 1925 to 1927 he worked as a salesclerk for the Oberösterreichische Elektrobau AG and then until spring 1933 Eichmann worked as district agent for the Vacuum Oil Company AG, a subsidiary of Standard Oil. In July 1933 he moved back to Germany. [Peter Krause: Der Eichmann-Prozess in der deutschen Presse ("The Eichmann trial in the German press"; Frankfurt, Campus 2002), ISBN 3-593-37001-8, p. 20.]

Eichmann married Veronica Liebl (1909–97) [cite web |url= |title=Eichman's wife was from České Budějovice |publisher=MF Dnes |language=Czech |accessdate=2007-11-21 |quote=Short article about Eichmann's wife] on March 21, 1935. The couple had four sons: Klaus Eichmann (b. 1936 in Berlin), Horst Adolf Eichmann (b. 1940 in Vienna), Dieter Helmut Eichmann (b. 1942 in Prague), and Ricardo Francisco Eichmann (b. 1955 in Buenos Aires).

Work with the Nazi Party and the SS

On the advice of family friend Ernst Kaltenbrunner, Eichmann joined the Austrian branch of the NSDAP (member number 889 895) and of the SS, enlisting on April 1, 1932, as an "SS-Anwärter". He was accepted as a full SS member that November, appointed an "SS-Mann", and assigned the SS number 45326.

For the next year, Eichmann was a member of the "Allgemeine SS" and served in a mustering formation operating from Salzburg.

In 1933 when the Nazis came to power, Eichmann returned to Germany and submitted an application to join the active duty SS regiments. He was accepted, and in November 1933, was promoted to "Scharführer" and assigned to the administrative staff of the Dachau concentration camp.

By 1934, Eichmann requested transfer into the "Sicherheitspolizei" (Security Police) which had, by that time, become a very powerful and feared organization. Eichmann's transfer was granted in November 1934, and he was assigned to the headquarters of the "Sicherheitsdienst" (SD) in Berlin. Eichmann was promoted to "Hauptscharführer" in 1935 and, in 1937, commissioned as an "SS-Untersturmführer".

In 1937, Eichmann was sent to the British Mandate of Palestine with his superior Herbert Hagen to assess the possibilities of massive Jewish emigration from Germany to Palestine. They landed in Haifa but could obtain only a transit visa so they went on to Cairo. There, they met Feival Polkes, an agent of the Haganah, who discussed with them the plans of the Zionists and tried to enlist their assistance in facilitating Jewish emigration from Europe.Fact|date=February 2007 According to an answer Eichmann gave at his trial, he had also planned to meet Arab leaders in Palestine; this never happened because entry to Palestine was refused by the British authorities. Fact|date=April 2008

In 1938, Eichmann was assigned to Austria to help organize SS Security Forces in Vienna after the Anschluss of Austria into Germany. Through this effort, Eichmann was promoted to "SS-Obersturmführer" (1st lieutenant) and, by the end of 1938, Eichmann had been selected by the SS leadership to form the Central Office for Jewish Emigration, charged with forcibly deporting and expelling Jews from Austria.

World War II

At the start of World War II, Eichmann had been promoted to "SS-Hauptsturmführer" (captain) and had made a name for himself with his Office for Jewish Emigration. Through this work Eichmann made several contacts in the Zionist movement, which he worked with to speed up Jewish emigration from the Third ReichFact|date=June 2008.

Eichmann returned to Berlin in 1939 after the formation of the Reich Central Security Office (RSHA). In December 1939, he was assigned to head "RSHA Referat IV B4", the RSHA department that dealt with Jewish affairs and evacuation. In August 1940, he released his "" (Reich Central Security Office: Madagascar Project), a plan for forced Jewish deportation that never materialized. He was promoted to the rank of "SS-Sturmbannführer" in late 1940, and less than a year later to "Obersturmbannführer".

In 1942, Reinhard Heydrich ordered Eichmann to attend the Wannsee Conference as recording secretary, where Germany's anti-Semitic measures were set down into an official policy of genocide. Eichmann was given the position of Transportation Administrator of the "Final Solution to the Jewish Question", which put him in charge of all the trains which would carry Jews to the death camps in the territory of occupied Poland.

In 1944, he was sent to Hungary after Germany had occupied that country in fear of a Soviet invasion. Eichmann at once went to work deporting Jews, sending 430,000 Hungarians to their deaths in the gas chambers.

By 1945, "Reichsführer-SS" Heinrich Himmler had ordered Jewish extermination to be halted and evidence of the Final Solution to be destroyed. Eichmann was appalled by Himmler's turnabout, and continued his work in Hungary against official orders. Eichmann was also working to avoid being called up in the last ditch German military effort, since a year before he had been commissioned as a Reserve "Untersturmführer" in the "Waffen-SS" and was now being ordered to active combat duty.

Eichmann fled Hungary in 1945 as the Soviets entered, and he returned to Austria, where he met up with his old friend Ernst Kaltenbrunner. Kaltenbrunner, however, refused to associate with Eichmann since the latter's duties as an extermination administrator had left him a marked man by the Allies.

After World War II

At the end of World War II, Eichmann was captured by the U.S. Army, who did not know that this man who presented himself as "Otto Eckmann" was in fact a much bigger catch. Early in 1946, he escaped from U.S. custody and hid in various parts of Germany for a few years. In 1948 he obtained a landing permit for Argentina, but did not use it immediately. At the beginning of 1950, Eichmann went to Italy, where he posed as a refugee named Riccardo Klement. With the help of a Franciscan friar who had connections with archbishop Alois Hudal, who organized one of the first ratlines, Eichmann obtained an International Committee of the Red Cross humanitarian passport in Geneva and an Argentine visa, both issued to "Riccardo Klement, technician." (In early May 2007, this fake passport was discovered in court archives in Argentina by a student doing research on Eichmann's abduction. [cite news |first= |last= |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Argentina uncovers Eichmann pass |url= |quote=A student has found the passport used by Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann to enter Argentina in 1950. |publisher=BBC |date=29 May, 2007 |accessdate=2007-06-07 ] The passport has been handed to the Argentina Holocaust Museum in Buenos Aires.) He boarded a ship heading for Argentina on July 14, 1950. For the next 10 years, he worked in several odd jobs in the Buenos Aires area (from factory foreman, to junior water engineer and professional rabbit farmer). Eichmann also brought his family to Argentina.

CIA inaction

In June 2006, old CIA documents regarding Nazis and stay-behind networks dedicated to anti-communism were released. Among the 27,000 documents released, a March 1958 memo from the German BND agency to the CIA stated that Eichmann was reported to have lived in Argentina since 1952, using the alias "Clemens". The CIA took no action on this information, however, because Eichmann's arrest threatened to be an embarrassment to the Americans and Germans by turning public attention to the former Nazis they had recruited after World War II. For example, the West German government at the time, headed by Konrad Adenauer, was worried about what Eichmann might say, especially about the past of Hans Globke, Adenauer's national security adviser, who had worked with Eichmann in the Jewish Affairs department and helped draft the 1935 Nuremberg Laws.cite news | date = 2006-06-07 | title = Rapport: CIA beskyttede topnazist |url = | publisher = | accessdate = 2006-06-07 da icon] cite news | date= 2006-06-07 | title = C.I.A. Knew Where Eichmann Was Hiding, Documents Show |url =| publisher =| accessdate = 2007-02-28 ] cite news|date= 2006-06-07 | title = Documents show post-war CIA covered up Nazi war crimes |url = | publisher = | accessdate = 2006-06-11] At the request of Bonn, the CIA persuaded "Life" magazine to delete any reference to Globke from Eichmann's memoirs, which it had bought from his family. [ CIA Ties With Ex-Nazis Shown] , "The Washington Post", June 7, 2006 ] By the time the CIA and the BND had this information, Israel had temporarily given up looking for Eichmann in Argentina because they could not figure out his alias. Neither the CIA, nor the U.S. government as a whole, at that time had a policy of pursuing Nazi war criminals. In addition to protecting Eichmann and Globke, the CIA also protected Reinhard Gehlen, [The Guardian, June 8, 2006, [,,1792559,00.html"Why Israel's capture of Eichmann caused panic at the CIA"] ] who recruited hundreds of former Nazi spies for the CIA. The low key attitude toward Nazi war criminals, and more concentration on the Soviet Union even possibly allowed Eichmann to be a member of a private American golf club and travel freely without being discovered.


Throughout the 1950s, many Jews and other victims of the Holocaust dedicated themselves to finding Eichmann and other notorious Nazis. Among them was the Jewish Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal. In 1954, Wiesenthal received a postcard from an associate living in Buenos Aires, saying Eichmann was in Argentina.

"Ich sah jenes schmutzige Schwein Eichmann" (I saw that dirty pig Eichmann)," the message read in part. "Er wohnt beinahe in Buenos Aires und arbeitet für ein Wassergeschäft" (He lives near Buenos Aires and works for a water company)." With this and other information collected by Wiesenthal, the Israelis had solid leads regarding Eichmann's whereabouts. Isser Harel, the then-head of the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad, however, later claimed in an unpublished manuscript that Wiesenthal "'had no role whatsoever' in Eichmann's apprehension but in fact had endangered the entire Eichmann operation and aborted the planned capture of Auschwitz doctor Josef Mengele." [Schachter, Jonathan, "Isser Harel Takes On Nazi-Hunter. Wiesenthal 'Had No Role' In Eichmann Kidnapping", "The Jerusalem Post" 7 May 1991.]

Also instrumental in exposing Eichmann's identity was Lothar Hermann. He was a worker of Jewish descent who fled to Argentina from Germany following his incarceration in the Dachau concentration camp, where Eichmann had served as an administrator. By the 1950s, Hermann had settled into life in Buenos Aires with his family. His daughter Sylvia became acquainted with Eichmann's family and romantically involved with Klaus, the eldest Eichmann son. Klaus made boastful remarks about his father's life as a Nazi and direct responsibility for the Holocaust. Hermann knew he had struck gold in 1957 after reading a newspaper report about German war criminals — of which Eichmann was one.

Soon after, he sent Sylvia to the Eichmanns' home on a fact-finding mission. She was met at the door by Eichmann himself. She asked for Klaus, and, after learning that he was not home, inquired as to whether she was speaking to his father. Eichmann confirmed this fact. Hermann soon began a correspondence with Fritz Bauer, chief prosecutor for the West German state of Hesse, and provided details about Eichmann's person and life. He contacted Israeli officials, who worked closely with Hermann over the next several years to learn about Eichmann and to formulate a plan to capture him.

In 1959, Mossad was informed that Eichmann was in Buenos Aires, Argentina under the name Ricardo Klement (Clement) [ [| Shin Bet Web Site] ] and began an effort to locate his exact whereabouts when, through relentless surveillance, it was concluded that Ricardo Klement was, in fact, Adolf Eichmann. The Israeli government then approved an operation to capture Eichmann and bring him to Jerusalem for trial as a war criminal. The Mossad agents continued their surveillance of Eichmann through the first months of 1960 until it was judged safe to take him down, even watching as he delivered flowers to his wife on their 25th wedding anniversary on March 21.

Eichmann was apprehended by a team of Mossad and Shabak [Haggai Hitron, "The monster is in handcuffs', "Haaretz", January 16, 2007. [] ] agents in a suburb of Buenos Aires on May 11, 1960, as part of a covert operation. The Mossad agents had arrived in Buenos Aires in April 1960 after Eichmann's identity was confirmed. After observing Eichmann for an extensive period of time, a team of Mossad agents waited for him as he arrived home from his work as foreman at a Mercedes Benz factory. One kept lookout waiting for his bus to arrive while two agents pretended to be fixing a broken down car. An unconfirmed fourth would ride on the bus to make sure he would leave. Once Eichmann alighted and began walking the short distance to his home, he was asked by the agent at the car, Zvi Aharoni, for a cigarette. When Eichmann reached in his pocket he was set upon by the two by the car. Eichmann fought but team member Peter Malkin, a Polish Jew and a black belt in karate, knocked Eichmann unconscious with a strike to the back of his neck and bundled him into the car and took him to the safe house. In the safe house a preliminary interrogation was conducted and it was proved that Klement (Clement) was undoubtedly the Nazi Eichmann. [ [| Shin Bet Web Site] ] The agents kept him in a safe house until it was judged that he could be taken to Israel without being detected by Argentine authorities. Disguising themselves and a heavily-sedated Eichmann as part of a delegation of Jewish union members, Eichmann was smuggled out of Argentina on board an El Al Bristol Britannia commercial air flight from Argentina to Israel on May 21, 1960.

There was a backup plan in case the apprehension did not go as planned. If the police happened to intervene, one of the agents was to handcuff himself to Eichmann and make full explanations and disclosure. For some time the Israeli government denied involvement in Eichmann's capture, claiming that he had been taken by Jewish volunteers who eagerly turned him over to Israeli government authorities. This claim was made due to the influence of anti-Semitic sectors in the Argentine government and militaryFact|date=August 2008. Negotiations followed between Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion and Argentine president Arturo Frondizi, while the abduction was met from radical right sectors with a violent wave of anti-Semitism, carried on the streets by the Tacuara Nationalist Movement (including murders, torture and bombings). [ [ Tacuara salió a la calle] , "Página/12", May 15, 2005 es icon]

Ben Gurion then announced Eichmann's capture to the Knesset (Israel's parliament) on May 23, receiving a standing ovation in return. Isser Harel, head of the Mossad at the time of the operation, wrote a book about Eichmann's capture entitled "The House on Garibaldi Street". The book has since been made into a movie of the same name. Some years later, Peter Malkin, a member of the kidnapping team, wrote "Eichmann in My Hands", which explores Eichmann's character and motivations, but its veracity has been attacked.

International dispute over capture

In June 1960, after unsuccessful secret negotiations with Israel, Argentina requested an urgent meeting of the United Nations Security Council, to protest what Argentina regarded as the "violation of the sovereign rights of the Argentine Republic".M. Lippmann, The trial of Adolf Eichmann and the protection of universal human rights under international law, "Houston Journal of International Law", Autumn 1982, pp1-34.] In the ensuing debate, the Israeli representative Golda Meir argued that the incident was only an "isolated violation of Argentine law" since the abductors were not Israeli agents but private individuals. Eventually the Council passed a resolution which requested Israel "to make appropriate reparation", while stating that "Eichmann should be brought to appropriate justice for the crimes of which he is accused" and that "this resolution should in no way be interpreted as condoning the odious crimes of which Eichmann is accused." [Security Council resolution 138, June 23, 1960 (Symbol S/4349) [] ]

After further negotiations, on August 3, Israel and Argentina agreed to end their dispute with a joint statement that "the Governments of Israel and the Republic of the Argentine, imbued with the wish to give effect to the resolution of the Security Council of June 23, 1960, in which the hope was expressed that the traditionally friendly relations between the two countries will be advanced, have decided to regard as closed the incident that arose out of the action taken by Israel nationals which infringed fundamental rights of the State of Argentina."L. C. Green, Legal issues of the Eichmann trial, "Tulane Law Review", vol 641 (1962-3) pp643-683.]

In the subsequent trial and appeal, the Israeli courts avoided the issue of the legality of Eichmann's capture, relying instead on legal precedents that the circumstances of his capture had no bearing on the legality of his trial. The Israeli Court also determined that because "Argentina has condoned the violation of her sovereignty and has waived her claims, including that for the return of the Appellant, any violation of international law that may have been involved in this incident has thus been remedied." [Eichmann trial transcript [] and appeal transcript [] .]


Jerusalem court. See video]

Eichmann's trial before an Israeli court in Jerusalem began on April 11, 1961. He was indicted on 15 criminal charges, including crimes against humanity, crimes against the Jewish people and membership in an outlawed organization. In accordance with Israeli criminal procedure, the trial was presided over by three judges: Jacob Baror, Benjamin Halevi and Yitzhak Raveh. Gideon Hausner, the Israeli attorney general, served as chief prosecutor. The three judges sat high atop a plain dais. The trial was held at Beit Ha'am (House of the People), a new auditorium in downtown Jerusalem. Eichmann sat inside a bulletproof glass booth.

The legal basis of the charges against Eichmann was the 1950 "Nazi and Nazi Collaborators (Punishment) Law". [Orna Ben-Naftali and Yogev Tuval, Punishing International Crimes Committed by the Persecuted, "Journal of International Criminal Justice", Vol. 4 (2006), 128-178.]

The trial caused huge international controversy as well as an international sensation. The Israeli government allowed news programs all over the world to broadcast the trial live with few restrictions. The trial began with various witnesses, including many Holocaust survivors, who testified against Eichmann and his role in transporting victims to the extermination camps. One key witness for the prosecution was an American judge named Michael A. Musmanno, who was a U.S. naval officer in 1945 who questioned the Nuremberg defendants. He testified that the late Hermann Göring "made it very clear that Eichmann was the man to determine, in what order, in what countries, the Jews were to die."

When the prosecution rested, Eichmann's defense lawyers, Dr. Robert Servatius and Dieter Wechtenbruch, opened up the defense by explaining why they did not cross-examine any of the prosecution witnesses. Eichmann himself, speaking in his own defense, said that he did not dispute the facts of what happened during the Holocaust. During the whole trial, Eichmann insisted that he was only "following orders" — the same defense used by some of the Nazi war criminals during the 1945–1946 Nuremberg Trials. He explicitly declared that he had abdicated his conscience in order to follow the "Führerprinzip". Eichmann claimed that he was merely a "transmitter" with very little power. He testified that: "I never did anything, great or small, without obtaining in advance express instructions from Adolf Hitler or any of my superiors."

Defense witnesses, all of them former high-ranking Nazis, were promised immunity and safe conduct from their German and Austrian homes to testify in Jerusalem for Eichmann's behalf. All of them refused to travel to Israel, but they sent court depositions. None of the depositions supported Eichmann's "following orders" defense, however. One deposition was from Otto Winkelmann, a former senior SS police leader in Budapest in 1944. He stated in his memo that "(Eichmann) had the nature of a subaltern, which means a fellow who uses his power recklessly, without moral restraints. He would certainly overstep his authority if he thought he was acting in the spirit of his commander (Adolf Hitler)". A former brigadier general in the German secret service named Franz Six said in his deposition that Eichmann was an absolute believer in National Socialism and would act to the most extreme of the party doctrine, and that Eichmann had greater power than other department chiefs.

After 14 weeks of testimony with more than 1,500 documents, 100 prosecution witnesses (90 of whom were Nazi concentration camp survivors) and dozens of defense depositions delivered by diplomatic couriers from 16 different countries, the Eichmann trial ended on August 14. At that point, the judges began deliberations in seclusion. On December 11, the three judges announced their verdict: Eichmann was convicted on all counts. On December 15, he was sentenced to death. Eichmann appealed the verdict, mostly relying on legal arguments about Israel's jurisdiction and the legality of the laws under which he was charged. He also claimed that he was protected by the principle of "Acts of State" and repeated his "superior orders" defense. On May 29, 1962 Israel's Supreme Court, sitting as a Court of Criminal Appeal, rejected the appeal and upheld the District Court's judgment on all counts. On May 31, Israeli President Yitzhak Ben-Zvi turned down Eichmann's petition for mercy. A large number of prominent persons sent requests for clemency. ["Israeli letters favored sparing of Eichmann", New York Times, June 4, 1962.] Ben-Zvi replied quoting a passage from the First Book of Samuel: "As your sword bereaved women, so will your mother be bereaved among women." (1 Samuel 15:33, Samuel's words to Agag, king of the Amalekites). [ Carmel, Yoseph, "Itzchak Ben Zvi from his Diary in the President's office" , Mesada, Ramat Gan, 1967 , page 179 ]


Eichmann was hanged a few minutes after midnight on May 31, 1962, at Ramla prison. This remains the only civil execution ever carried out in Israel, which has a general policy of not using the death penalty. Eichmann allegedly refused a last meal, preferring instead a bottle of Carmel, a dry red Israeli wine. He consumed about half of the bottle. He also refused to don the traditional black hood for his execution.

According to an official account, there were two people who would pull the lever simultaneously, so neither would know for sure by whose hand Eichmann died. [ [ The Executioner] ]

Eichmann's last words were, reportedly, "Long live Germany. Long live Austria. Long live Argentina. These are the countries with which I have been most closely associated and I shall not forget them. I had to obey the rules of war and my flag. I am ready."cite news | date = 1999-08-12 | title = Eichmann memoirs published | url =,,283585,00.html | publisher = Guardian Unlimited | accessdate = 2006-03-23]

Shortly after the execution, Eichmann's body was cremated. The next morning, his ashes were scattered at sea over the Mediterranean, in international waters. This was to ensure that there could be no future memorial and that no nation would serve as his final resting place. [ [ 'We have to carry out the sentence' - Haaretz - Israel News ] ]

Eichmann analysis

Since Eichmann's death, historians have speculated on certain facts regarding his life. The critical question is how responsible Eichmann was for the implementation of the Holocaust. Some argue that Eichmann knew exactly what he was doing, while others state that he was unfairly judged and that he was doing only his duty as a soldier. Eichmann's son, Rudolph, condemned his father's actions, and said he harboured no resentment toward Israel for executing his father. [ [ j. - Eichmann's son: `There is no way I can explain' deeds ] ] Eichmann himself said he joined the SS not because he agreed or disagreed with its ethos, but because he needed to build a career. [ [ Resignation on moral principle | Opinion | The First Post ] ]

A third analysis came from political theorist Hannah Arendt, a Jew who fled Germany before Hitler's rise to power, and who reported on Eichmann's trial for "The New Yorker". In "Eichmann in Jerusalem", a book formed by this reporting, Arendt concluded that, aside from a desire for improving his career, Eichmann showed no trace of an antisemitic personality or of any psychological damage to his character. She called him the embodiment of the "Banality of Evil", as he appeared at his trial to have an ordinary and common personality, displaying neither guilt nor hatred. She suggested that this most strikingly discredits the idea that the Nazi criminals were manifestly psychopathic and different from ordinary people.

Stanley Milgram, who interpreted Arendt's work as stating that even the most ordinary of people can commit horrendous crimes if placed in the right situation and given the correct incentives, wrote: "I must conclude that Arendt's conception of the banality of evil comes closer to the truth than one might dare imagine." [Milgram, Stanley. "The Perils of Obedience". "Harper's Magazine" (1974).] Arendt did not, however, suggest that Eichmann was normal or that any person placed in his situation would have done as he did. According to her account, Adolf Eichmann had abdicated his will to make moral choices, and thus his autonomy. [The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy,, retrieved 11/26/2007] Eichmann claimed he was just following orders, and that he was therefore respecting the duties of a "bureaucrat". Arendt thus argued that he had essentially forsaken the conditions of morality, autonomy and the ability to question orders (see "Führerprinzip").

In "Becoming Eichmann", David Cesarani has claimed that Eichmann was in fact extremely anti-Semitic, and that these feelings were important motivators of his genocidal actions. [ Cesarani, David, "Becoming Eichmann: Rethinking the Life, Crimes and Trial of a ‘Desk Murderer’", Da Capo Press, Cambridge, MA, 2006, pages 197, 347]

A footnote to Eichmann's SS career focuses on the point as to why he was never promoted to the rank of full SS-Colonel, known as "Standartenführer". With Eichmann's record and responsibilities, he would have been a prime candidate for advancement. After 1941, however, his SS record contains no evidence that he was ever even recommended for another promotion.

Awards and decorations

*War Merit Cross 1st Class with Swords
*War Merit Cross 2nd Class with Swords

ee also

* Joel Brand
* Command responsibility
* History of the Jews in Hungary
* Rudolf Kastner
* Emanuel Schäfer
* Rudolf Vrba



* Arendt, Hannah, "Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil" (1963) ISBN 0-14-018765-0
* David Cesarani, "Eichmann: His Life and Crimes" (2004) ISBN 0-434-01056-1
* Harry Mulisch, "Case 40/61; report on the Eichmann trial" (1963) ISBN 0-8122-3861-3
* Jochen von Lang, "Eichmann Interrogated" (1982) ISBN 0-88619-017-7
* Moshe Pearlman, "The Capture of Adolf Eichmann", 1961. (cited in Hannah Arendt: "Eichmann in Jerusalem", Penguin, 1994, p.235) LCC|DD247.E5|P39
* Pierre de Villemarest, "Untouchable — Who protected Bormann & Gestapo Müller after 1945...," Aquilion, 2005, ISBN 1-904997-02-3 (Gestapo Müller was one of the chiefs of Adolf Eichmann)
* Hanna Yablonka (Ora Cummings trans.) (2004). "The State of Israel vs. Adolf Eichmann" (New York: Schocken Books) ISBN 0805241876
* Zvi Aharoni, Wilhelm Dietl: "Der Jäger – Operation Eichmann", DVA GmbH, 1996, ISBN 3-421-05031-7
* [ My Role in Operation Eichmann.] Tuviah Friedman Institute of Documentation. Israel

External links

* [ Biography of Adolf Eichmann "The History Place"]
* [ CIA papers: U.S. failed to pursue Nazi War Criminal Adolf Eichmann]
* [ BBC: "Adolf Eichmann: The Mind of a War Criminal"]
* [ "The Capture of Adolf Eichmann"] from the Jewish Virtual Library
* [ Declassified CIA names file on Adolf Eichmann] - Provided by the "National Security Archive"
* [ Eichmann trial: The complete transcripts] - Provided by the "Nizkor Project"
* [ Authority After Adolph Eichmann and the Endlösung]
* [ Eichmann Prosecutor Interview: A Conversation with Justice Gabriel Bach, Senior Prosecutor in the Adolf Eichmann Trial]
* [ Postwar Germany, the Vatican and CIA shielded Eichmann] , World Socialist Web Site
* Scott Shane: [ CIA Knew Where Eichmann Was Hiding, Documents Show] (New York Times, 7 June 2006)
*United States Holocaust Memorial Museum - [ Adolf Eichmann]
*worldcat id|id=lccn-n50-36722

NAME=Eichmann, Adolf
SHORT DESCRIPTION=Nazi SS official crucial in the Holocaust
DATE OF BIRTH=19 March 1906
PLACE OF BIRTH=Solingen, Germany
DATE OF DEATH=31 May 1962
PLACE OF DEATH=Ramla, Israel

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  • Karl Adolf Eichmann — Adolf Eichmann, 1933 Karl Adolf Eichmann (* 19. März 1906 in Solingen; † 31. Mai 1962 in Ramla bei Tel Aviv, Israel), SS Obersturmbannführer, war als Leiter des für die Organisation der Vertreibung und D …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Prozess gegen Adolf Eichmann — Als Eichmann Prozess wird das Gerichtsverfahren gegen den wegen millionenfachen Mordes angeklagten ehemaligen SS Obersturmbannführer Adolf Eichmann bezeichnet, das vor dem Jerusalemer Bezirksgericht zwischen dem 11. April und 15. Dezember 1961… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Karl Adolf Eichmann — noun Austrian who became the Nazi official who administered the concentration camps where millions of Jews were murdered during World War II (1906 1962) • Syn: ↑Eichmann, ↑Adolf Eichmann • Instance Hypernyms: ↑Nazi, ↑German Nazi …   Useful english dictionary

  • Eichmann — Adolf Eichmann Adolf Eichmann Naissance 19 mars 1906 Solingen, Allemagne Décès 31 mai 1962 (à 56 ans) Jérusalem …   Wikipédia en Français

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