Demjanjuk trial lawyer: Germany lacks funds to go after Nazi criminals





"A small fish" is one expression whose literal meaning is identical in German and Hebrew. As in the holy tongue, when someone uses the term in German, the reference is to something of little value. The expression refers to someone low on the totem pole - to a person like John Demjanjuk, the Ukrainian guard at the Sobibor concentration camp who was convicted last May of abetting the murder of tens of thousands of Jews.

"Yes he is a small fish - of course, that's right. He was at the lowest level of the hierarchy. But from the perspective of my clients, who lost their families in Sobibor, there's no doubt that everybody, big fish or small, who participated in murder of their families should be brought to justice," opines Prof. Cornelius Nestler of Cologne University, who represented the victims' families in the Demjanjuk trial in Germany.

Nestler, who is married to a Jewish woman, visited Israel this week for the first time in his life, as a guest of the Hebrew University's Institute for Advanced Studies, where he delivered a lecture entitled "Demjanjuk Trial: the Voice of the Victims."

The problem prosecutors faced in this Demjanjuk trial, Nestler states, "was not to put him on trial for what he did, but rather to put him on trial after they [the prosecutors] have not prosecuted all sorts of higher ranking Nazi culprits in past decades."...



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