The trial of Adolf Eichmann

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After the war Adolf Eichmann was one of the most important war criminals still at large. He had been a key figure in murder of the Jews of Europe.

As head of the Gestapo's section for Jewish affairs, Eichmann had planned and organised the deportations to the death camps. He had also decided how the property of deported Jews would be seized and what would happen to money gained.

Eichmann had managed to flee to Argentina where he lived under a false name, Ricardo Klement. However, in May 1960 Israeli agents kidnapped him and took him to Jerusalem for trial. He was charged on 15 counts, including crimes against the Jewish people and crimes against humanity.

The Eichmann trial awakened international interest in the Holocaust. Many Holocaust survivors gave their testimony. The trial made headline news throughout the world. It led to many books being written and films being made dealing with different aspects of the murder of the Jews of Europe.

Eichmann was found guilty and sentenced to death. This was the first and last time the death sentence has been given in an Israeli court.

On 1 June 1962 he was executed by hanging. His body was cremated and his ashes scattered at sea, beyond Israel's territorial waters.

Between 1961 and 1967, 20,000 young Germans, previously ignorant of their country’s past, volunteered to work in Israel.