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Nazi hunters launch new campaign.


OkToBeTakei

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http://uk.news.yahoo.com/nazi-hunters-l ... ml#Oqv224m

The 2,000 placards displayed in cities including Berlin feature a chilling black-and-white photograph of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp and the tagline: "Late but not too late."

Part of the Wiesenthal Center's "Operation Last Chance" to catch the surviving suspects behind World War II-era atrocities, the signs offer a reward of up to 25,000 euros ($33,000) for information leading to the capture and conviction of such criminals.

Zuroff estimates that only around 60 potential defendants are still alive. He dismisses the idea that they should be shown clemency given their advanced age.

"In my 33 years of hunting Nazis I never once had a case of a Nazi who ever said he was sorry," he said.

"Don't look at these people and see a frail old man or woman, think of someone who at the height of his physical strength devoted his energy to murdering innocent women and men. These are the last people on Earth deserving any sympathy because they had absolutely no sympathy for their victims."

There appears to be some discomfort with recent arrests and trials. One thing is certain, time is running out.

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I don't think that the still at-large Nazis should be shown clemency, but I do think trying to find them is kind of a waste of time and resources. At this point, bringing them to trial would be largely symbolic. They've lived full lives and are now very close to the natural end of those lives. What punishment can they really be given? Oh, spend the last year of your life behind bars then die of old age? Locking up elderly, infirm criminals for the very last of their years deprives them of some creature comforts, but it just doesn't seem to be as much of a punishment as it would have been years ago when imprisonment might have actually meant they lost their ability to live and work and have families, etc. Hell, some of them are so old they might well die before their trial ends.

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I don't think that the still at-large Nazis should be shown clemency, but I do think trying to find them is kind of a waste of time and resources. At this point, bringing them to trial would be largely symbolic. They've lived full lives and are now very close to the natural end of those lives. What punishment can they really be given? Oh, spend the last year of your life behind bars then die of old age? Locking up elderly, infirm criminals for the very last of their years deprives them of some creature comforts, but it just doesn't seem to be as much of a punishment as it would have been years ago when imprisonment might have actually meant they lost their ability to live and work and have families, etc. Hell, some of them are so old they might well die before their trial ends.

Agreed. I honestly don't know what the solution is. When you're 90-something you really have a lot less to lose, and it seems pointless to do the whole trial-imprisonment thing for reasons you mention. Some of them are possibly suffering from dementia, too - what do you do with that?

And yet, there still needs to be some kind of acknowledgment of the terrible deeds these people have committed. How, I don't know.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I just started reading The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult, which is a book about this subject. I'm 100 pages into it and it is very good.

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I just started reading The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult, which is a book about this subject. I'm 100 pages into it and it is very good.

I've read that too. It was very interesting.

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