A New Documentary Lets Adolf Eichmann Speak in His Own Words

During his 1961 trial, the Israeli court ruled that the prosecution could not use the extensive audio recordings of Adolf Eichmann’s conversations before his capture by the Mossad. Since then, the tapes have been kept away from the public; it was only in 2011 that a German researcher used them along with other evidence to demonstrate conclusively what had been apparent to many: that Eichmann was not the thoughtless cog in the machine that Hannah Arendt had made him out to be in her famous book, but a fanatical anti-Semite. Recently a group of Israeli filmmakers gained access to the tapes, and used them in producing a new documentary about the man who played a major role in coordinating the Holocaust. Isabel Kershner writes:

The tapes were made by Willem Sassen, a Dutch journalist and a Nazi SS officer and propagandist during World War II. Part of a group of Nazi fugitives in Buenos Aires, he and Eichmann embarked on the recording project with an eye to publishing a book after Eichmann’s death. Members of the group met for hours each week at Sassen’s house, where they drank and smoked together.

Exposing Eichmann’s visceral, ideological anti-Semitism, his zeal for hunting down Jews and his role in the mechanics of mass murder, the [documentary] brings the missing evidence from the trial to a mass audience for the first time. Eichmann can be heard swatting a fly that was buzzing around the room and describing it as having “a Jewish nature.”

He told his interlocutors that he “did not care” whether the Jews he sent to Auschwitz lived or died. Having denied knowledge of their fate in his trial, he said on tape that the order was that “Jews who are fit to work should be sent to work. Jews who are not fit to work must be sent to the Final Solution, period,” meaning their physical destruction.

“If we had killed 10.3 million Jews, I would say with satisfaction, ‘Good, we destroyed an enemy.’ Then we would have fulfilled our mission,” he said, referring to all the Jews of Europe.

Read more at New York Times

More about: Adolf Eichmann, Anti-Semitism, Hannah Arendt, Holocaust

Iran’s Program of Subversion and Propaganda in the Caucasus

In the past week, Iranian proxies and clients have attacked Israel from the West Bank, Gaza, Lebanon, and Yemen. Iran also has substantial military assets in Iraq and Syria—countries over which it exercises a great deal of control—which could launch significant attacks on Israel as well. Tehran, in addition, has stretched its influence northward into both Azerbaijan and Armenia. While Israel has diplomatic relations with both of these rival nations, its relationship with Baku is closer and involves significant military and security collaboration, some of which is directed against Iran. Alexander Grinberg writes:

Iran exploits ethnic and religious factors in both Armenia and Azerbaijan to further its interests. . . . In Armenia, Iran attempts to tarnish the legitimacy of the elected government and exploit the church’s nationalist position and tensions between it and the Armenian government; in Azerbaijan, the Iranian regime employs outright terrorist methods similar to its support for terrorist proxies in the Middle East [in order to] undermine the regime.

Huseyniyyun (Islamic Resistance Movement of Azerbaijan) is a terrorist militia made up of ethnic Azeris and designed to fight against Azerbaijan. It was established by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps . . . in the image of other pro-Iranian militias. . . . Currently, Huseyniyyun is not actively engaged in terrorist activities as Iran prefers more subtle methods of subversion. The organization serves as a mouthpiece of the Iranian regime on various Telegram channels in the Azeri language. The main impact of Huseyniyyun is that it helps spread Iranian propaganda in Azerbaijan.

The Iranian regime fears the end of hostilities between Armenia and Azerbaijan because this would limit its options for disruption. Iranian outlets are replete with anti-Semitic paranoia against Azerbaijan, accusing the country of awarding its territory to Zionists and NATO. . . . Likewise, it is noteworthy that Armenian nationalists reiterate hideous anti-Semitic tropes that are identical to those spouted by the Iranians and Palestinians. Moreover, leading Iranian analysts have no qualms about openly praising [sympathetic] Armenian clergy together with terrorist Iran-funded Azeri movements for working toward Iranian goals.

Read more at Jerusalem Institute for Strategy and Security

More about: Azerbaijan, Iran, Israeli Security