Monday, December 21, 2009

Misplaced justice

Not once in this entire article does it mention that this man was ACQUITED of all charges against him in an ISRAELI court of law back in the 80s.
Now this frail old man is being tried again in Germany on the 60 yr old emotional memories of holocaust survivors. Will they include the testimony of survivors who, back in the 80s claimed that "Ivan the Terrible" was killed in a camp uprising in 1945?
Everyone effected by the holocaust has my extreme and sincere sympathy and I'd never stand in the way of justice in prosecuting war criminals, but this is a travesty of justice and a crime in itself.

Demjanjuk unmoved as Holocaust survivors testify
Mon Dec 21, 8:17 am ET

MUNICH, Germany (Reuters) – John Demjanjuk sat impassively while Holocaust survivors on Monday recalled the horrors of Nazi Germany at his trial on charges of helping to force 27,900 Jews into gas chambers in 1943.

German state prosecutors accuse Demjanjuk, who was top of the Simon Wiesenthal Center's list of most-wanted war criminals, of assisting in killings at the Sobibor death camp in Poland, where prosecutors say at least 250,000 Jews were killed.

The 89-year-old sat in his wheelchair and showed no emotion as eight plaintiffs, some of them with tears in their eyes and their voices breaking, described how they had survived the Holocaust while their relatives perished.

Demjanjuk denies he was involved in the Holocaust and his family insists he is too frail to be standing trial.

One of the plaintiffs, Robert Cohen, 83, whose brother and parents were killed at Sobibor, described his experiences at Nazi death camps including Auschwitz.

"We didn't know what was going on," the Amsterdam-born pensioner told the court during the morning session. "We thought we had to work."

Due to Demjanjuk's frailty, hearings are limited to two 90-minute sessions a day. His case is likely to be Germany's last major Nazi-era war crimes trial.

Demjanjuk was born in Ukraine and fought in the Soviet army before being captured by the Nazis and recruited as a camp guard. He emigrated to the United States in 1951.

In May, he was extradited from the United States where he had lived in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio.

Demjanjuk has acknowledged being at other camps but not at Sobibor, which prosecutors say was run by between 20 and 30 members of the Nazi SS and up to 150 Soviet former prisoners of war.

In the Sobibor gas chambers, Jews died within 20 to 30 minutes after inhaling a toxic mixture of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, prosecutors said. Groups of about 80 were forced into gas chambers measuring about 4 by 4 meters (13 ft by 13 ft).

(Reporting by Christian Kraemer; writing by Paul Carrel; editing by Robin Pomeroy)


eamoore1978 said...

I thought the same thing when I first heard about this. A frail old man who was basically a kid when he was drafted? Come on.
I've looked into it a bit more.
He may be a frail old man now, but he was RECRUITED into the SS to be a concentration camp guard. That's not something you just randomly ended up doing.
This is not a man who deserves anyone's sympathy.

Christiaan said...

Atlantic Monthly had an excellent article calling b.s. on this "show" trial...and it was written by a Jew.

SagaciousHillbilly said...

eam, No, being an SS prison guard isn't just something you do. You might do it because you've been taken prisoner by the Nazis and the choice is to do it or die. There were lots of SS prison guard and soldiers. One of my best friend's father was an SS soldier. He did it because his country was at war. That didn't make him a war criminal.
This guy is not "Ivan the Terrible." If there was any doubt, don't you think an Iseali court would have found him guilty instead of acquiting him? He never hid the fact that he was an SS guard.

"Show trial" is a good word for this travesty.

Stimpson said...

Just FYI, SH, in case you missed it: