Israel acknowledges the capture of top SS official in Buenos Aires

In 1960 Mossad agents arrested Adolf Eichmann in Buenos Aires

Adolf Eichmann was a well known SS Nazi butcher, responsible for the logistics and the organization of the death camps in occupied territory. After the war, he “managed to escape” from the Western allies and spent 13 years with his wife in a peaceful town in the outskirts of Buenos Aires.

In 1960, the Israeli secret services executed a carefully prepared plan to capture Eichmann, which successfully took the Nazi killer to Israel, to be hung there two years after. It was one of the most ambitious under covered operations accomplished by the Mossad in foreign territory, but as Argentina was a friendly country, Tel Aviv never acknowledged it… until yesterday.

The Israeli daily Maariv announced that local authorities paved the way to the publication of a book written by one of its top intelligence officers, Isser Harel, who was at that time in charge for the operation in Buenos Aires. Harel tells chapter and verse on how he and his men stationed in Argentina, followed Eichmann steps, learned about his life and finally kidnapped the Nazi bureaucrat in May 11.

Eichmann was interrogated through nine days in Argentina to be taken to Tel Aviv in an official flight of the Israeli airline El Al. Soon after touching Israeli soil, Harel rushed to meet Prime Minister Ben-Gurion to give him the good news. “I have a present for you, Mr. Prime Minister”, Harel told Ben-Gurion.   

When the then Argentine government noted the case, protested Israeli authorities considering the kidnapping a violation of its sovereignty. Israel replied that the action had been undertaken by a group of Jews living in Argentina without ties with the government. Argentina never accepted Israeli excuses but filed the case as it was having enough problems with other former Nazi officials living in its territory.

Adolf Eichmann was a desk-murderer proud of having killed “five millions of Jews”, as he once said to his Nazi comrades, days before the end of the war. Born in 1906 in a protestant family, the SS Lieutenant-Colonel was Chief of the Jewish Office of the Gestapo during World War II and implemented the “Final Solution” which aimed at the total extermination of European Jewry.

On December 2, 1961 Eichmann was sentenced to death for crimes against the Jewish people and crimes against humanity. On May 31, 1962 he was executed in Ramleh prison, in Jerusalem.

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Author`s name Olga Savka