A former Auschwitz guard has testified at his trial that he bears a moral share of the blame for atrocities at the camp, but it’s up to judges to decide whether he deserves to be convicted as an accessory to murder.
As his trial opened Tuesday, 93-year-old Oskar Groening acknowledged having helped collect and tally money as part of his job dealing with the belongings stolen from people arriving at Auschwitz.
Groening told reporters as he arrived at the court in Lueneburg, south of Hamburg, that he expects an acquittal. In his statement to judges, he didn’t detail direct participation in any atrocities.
He concluded by saying to judges: “I share morally in the guilt but whether I am guilty under criminal law, you will have to decide.”
Why is the case being tried now, when there is unlikely to be anyone alive who can verify, or discredit, his story. He might be a reluctant bookkeeper who never hurt a flea (or a Jew), or he could have been in charge of torturing people – all his victims, and all his colleagues, are unavailable — and the paper records have been available for 70 years.
This person says he’s morally guilty and you say who knows! Perhaps he’s totally innocent. That says something…….
The fact that many victims are not alive doesn’t say anything. The idea that he’s lived soo many great years and has never had to even apologize for his crimes is disturbing.