OK - first the details then the fallout:
A German court convicted retired U.S. autoworker John Demjanjuk on Thursday of taking part in the murder of tens of thousands of Jews as a Nazi death camp guard, breaking legal ground that could pave the way for the prosecution of many low-level cogs in Hitler's machinery of destruction.
The 91-year-old Demjanjuk was sentenced to five years in prison on 28,060 counts of accessory to murder — one each for the number of people killed at the Sobibor death camp during the six months in 1943 when he was convicted of standing guard there.
But Demjanjuk will spend no immediate time behind bars. Presiding Judge Ralph Alt ordered him released from custody pending his appeal — a process that could take at least a year. It was not immediately clear when Demjanjuk would be released or where he would go.
The case was considered groundbreaking because although scores of Nazi war criminals have been tried and convicted in Germany, in this case there was no evidence that Demjanjuk (dem-YAHN'-yuk) committed a specific crime.
His prosecution was based on the theory that if Demjanjuk was at the camp in Nazi-occupied Poland, he was a participant in the killing there — the first time such a legal argument has been made in German courts.
The article goes on to say that he was a captured Soviet soldier who (probably given the choice of death, interment or service) chose to act as a guard for the SS.
So, to summarize: a man enters into war to fight for his nation, is capture, chooses to serve as a guard to make his time as a POW a little easier, survives the war, turns his back on europe and communism for the green pastures of US Capitalism and at the ripe age of 91 is brought up on accessory to murder charges of 28,000+ Jews killed at a concentration camp he was at for six months despite there being no evidence he was involved in the killings in any way.
Let me just highlight one piece of what I just said:
"...no evidence he was involved in the killings in any way."
I mean, no disrespect to the Jews and Germans in the crowd, but what the flying fuck? Are we so brainwashed by holocaust horrors that we are going to shirk due process and just come after anyone with even a hint of Nazi scent on them? They literally ruled that because he was there, he was a participant in the murders. Might as well hang Hitler's mailman, because, you know, he could have killed Hilter over a hundred times before he rose to power.
I really don't get this. Furthermore, they are happy at this ruling, the ruling on no evidence I remind you, because it will allow them to reopen hundreds of other cases to bring to justice the lower cogs of the Nazi regime. You know. those evil 80 and 90 year olds who'll be all dead in a few years.
Just goes to show, if you're going to fight a war, your best to choose the side who'd going to win or be dead.