Adolf Eichmann, an architect of the Nazi Holocaust, protested his innocence in a final plea against his death sentence, newly released papers show.
Eichmann told Israel’s president that he had only followed orders and was not responsible for “the unspeakable horrors” carried out against Jews.
Six million Jews were murdered by the Nazis during World War Two.
Israel released the papers on Holocaust Remembrance Day. Eichmann was convicted in Jerusalem and hanged in 1962.
Marking the publication of the hand-written documents, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin said: “Not a moment of kindness was given to those who suffered Eichmann’s evil – for them this evil was never banal, it was painful, it was palpable.
“He murdered whole families and desecrated a nation. Evil had a face, a voice. And the judgement against this evil was just.”
The papers reveal that Eichmann believed the Israeli judges who oversaw his trial had “made a fundamental mistake in that they are not able to empathise with the time and situation in which I found myself during the war years”.
He attempted to absolve himself of blame, telling Israel’s then-President Yitzhak Ben-Zvi: “It is not true… that I myself was a persecutor in the pursuit of the Jews… but only ever acted ‘by order of’.”
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SOURCE: BBC News