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Whenever I am confronted with the horrors of the Holocaust, I experience great sorrow and loss. Even though I had no family members die in that event, I feel connected to the 6 million Jews who died, and the other 6 million who also died at the hands of the Nazis. But we are approaching the time when few Nazis are still alive. And I’m beginning to question the purpose of hunting them out, putting them on trial, and punishing them for their horrendous acts.
My ambivalence arose with the recent trial of a woman, Irmgard Furchner, who was a secretary at the Stutthof concentration camp from June 1943 to April 1945:
The case against Furchner relies on German legal precedent established in cases over the past decade that anyone who helped Nazi death camps and concentration camps function can be prosecuted as an accessory to the murders committed there, even without evidence of participation in a specific crime.