IntroductionDuring Hitler’s reign over the Third Reich, some 6 million Jews were killed. This massive process of extermination was carried out by the SS (Schutzstaffel) led by Heinrich Himmler. Himmler Bio Himmler) was assisted by various Nazi officials who co-ordinated the deportation to the extermination camps. Adolf Eichmann was the most important organiser of these deportations. From the very beginning of his Nazi career, Eichmann occupied himself with Jewish matters. When he was put in charge of the Jewish Section of the Gestapo (Secret State Police) within the Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA, Head Office of State Security) he became one of the most important designers of the Holocaust.
Before Eichmann got involved in the co-ordination of the deportation to the extermination camps, he occupied himself with the organisation and execution of plans for emigration of Jews within the Third Reich. Before the Einsatzgruppen (mobile death squads) and the extermination camps became operational, Jews were put under severe pressure to leave the Third Reich in their masses. Because the execution of these plans caused many problems, the Germans ultimately reverted to the annihilation of European Jewry.
In this article, Eichmann’s life and Nazi career are described, as well as his post war life, his arrest and his standing trial as a war criminal. In addition, the historic process from emigration to physical annihilation takes a central place in this article; a process in which Eichmann was closely involved.