Eichmann: His Life and Crimes

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Vintage, 2005 - Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945) - 458 pages
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A monumental and groundbreaking biography of the architect of the Nazi’s “Final Solution,” and one of the icons of evil in our age.

Adolf Eichmann was at the centre of the Nazi genocide against the Jews of Europe between 1941 and 1945. He was directly responsible for transporting over 2 million Jews to their deaths in Auschwitz-Birkenau and other death camps. Yet he was an obscure figure until his sensational capture by the Israeli Secret Service in Argentina in 1960, and his subsequent trial in Jerusalem.

This study is the first account of Eichmann’s life to appear since the aftermath of his trial. It is a groundbreaking biography of one of the most fascinating of the Nazi leaders. Drawing on recently unearthed documents, David Cesarani shows how Eichmann became the Nazi Security Service’s “expert” on Jewish matters and reveals his initially cordial working relationship with Zionist Jews in Germany, despite his intense anti-Semitism.

Cesarani explains how new research demonstrates that the massive ethnic cleansing Eichmann conducted in Poland in 1939-40 was the crucial bridge to his role in the deportation of the Jews. And he argues controversially that Eichmann was not necessarily predisposed to mass murder, exploring the remarkable, largely unknown period in Eichmann’s career when he learned how to become a perpetrator of genocide.

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About the author (2005)

David Cesarani is Research Professor in History at Royal Holloway, University of London. His publications include Justice Delayed: How Britain Became a Refuge for Nazi War Criminals, Arthur Koestler: The Homeless Mind and, most recently, Eichmann: His Life and Crimes, which won the 2006 US National Jewish Book Award for History. He has written and edited several books exploring the relationship between Britain, British Jews, and Zionism including The 'Jewish Chronicle' and Anglo-Jewry and The Making of Modern Anglo-Jewry.

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