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com/ ==== ==== The Holocaust Reparations for Injustice Estelle Sapir is a 71-year old woman who, in 1939, was merely 11-years old when Nazi storm troopers ransacked her affluent Polish home and carted off her family to their demise. However, literally hours before she would see her family for the last time, her father shoved a Swiss bank slip into her hand and told her that if she survives, she should go to Geneva where banks have faithfully protected her family's fortune. Sapir survived 6 unbearable years of torture at the hands of the Nazis, after which she journeyed to the Credit Suisse bank of to reclaim the assets her father had spoken of. After displaying positive evidence of her family's holdings, the bank manager inquired if she could produce her father's death certificate. Visibly horrified at the manager's callous request, Sapir began sobbing uncontrollably. After being asked to leave the premises, Sapir complied, all the while screaming My father could protect his money from Hitler, but not from the Swiss! (Nelan, 1) This story is not fable, but fact. Over 5,500 other holocaust survivors can tell a similar tale, when they themselves tried to recover money their families had betrusted to Swiss bankers before Nazism enveloped Europe. Until 1996, these details amounted to nothing more than a personal history; yet, now they constitute vital courtroom testimony in a class action suit against the most powerful banking institutions in Switzerland. Holocaust survivors have taken the witness stand as plaintiffs, seeking justice for Swiss involvement in one of the biggest scandals of the twentieth century. Some might suggest that justice had been achieved when on July 26, 2000, a historic $1.25 billion settlement was reached between the Swiss banks and their Holocaust victims. Yet, despite the obvious monetary compensation, one cannot ignore the question that still persists. As a result of this settlement, has a true reconciliation been achieved between the Swiss and the Holocaust survivors after all these years? Throughout this essay, I will utilize my breadth of reading to assess the aforementioned question, and prove that true reconciliation does not possess a statute of limitations. When German troops invaded countries across Europe in the late 1930s and early 1940s, they looted central banks and carried off hundreds of tons of gold to finance their war machine. The Nazis had exhausted their own gold reserves, and historians believe that any gold passing through after 1939 was almost certainly looted. The SS also collected gold stolen from Jews and other victims of Nazi persecution, including and gold teeth from the extermination camps. The Nazis sold the gold to Switzerland and other neutral countries such as Sweden and Portugal. However, it has been documented that even after Switzerland learned of the atrocities occurring to the Jewish people, three-quarters of the Nazi finances still continued to run through the Swiss economy. (Nelan, 2) At the end of the war, the western allies recovered huge quantities of gold. The vast bulk of it had come from the central banks of 10 occupied countries.

Gold, which had unquestionably been taken from people in the death camps, was kept separate and used to help survivors. But after some argument the United States, Britain and France decided that all gold in bar form should be treated as monetary gold -- that is, taken from central banks -- and distributed to the 10 claimant governments in proportion to their losses. They also decided that claims from individuals for this gold would not be considered, on the grounds that a huge number of small claims would be impossible to deal with, and that governments should have the job of compensating individuals. In reference to this statement, it is especially interesting to note how an innocent assumption by hegemon powers could snowball into a painful discourse fifty years ahead. To examine and validate the claims, the three powers set up a Tripartite Gold Commission (TGC) in 1946. The commission proceeded to seize $60 million from Swiss bank accounts, so that it could properly distribute the gold as reparations. This event would serve as Switzerland's alibi for nearly fifty years, as the country would claim that all monetary debts had been settled in the years following the war. The Swiss would spend the next few decades sitting on laundered money and falsely relishing their 'neutral' reputation, while the survivors of the Holocaust would financially struggle to live a daily life. However, this progression came to an abrupt halt in 1996. Classified American documents have a life span of only 50 years. Thus, when the time had elapsed and many of these documents became public knowledge, new evidence was revealed linking Switzerland to the Third Reich. Contrary to an international inquiry in 1962, which discovered only $4.5 million in possible wartime assets, the new documents released information detailing the amount to be correctly estimated at $4.5 billion! (Nelan, 3) One in particular was a de-classified document dated June 14, 1941 showing $13.5 million and over 500 account holders with the Swiss Bank Corporation. (Csillag, 1) These recently uncovered documents are a smoking gun for the Jewish cause, as Elan Steinberg, executive director of the World Jewish Congress, says. For fifty years they have been telling us We can't give you any money because there are no records.' Now if they say we still can't have it, the implications are monstrous. After all, this is their list, not ours. (Nelan, 2) Upon learning the new information, the World Jewish Congress (WJC) began filing suit on behalf of living survivors. The first appeal, an effort led by U.S. attorney Irwin Levin, was against the three largest banks in Switzerland, namely: Swiss Banking Corporation, the Credit Suisse, and the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS). Although evidence shows the Swiss government benefiting from Nazi involvement, Levin shrewdly avoided the jurisdiction of international tribunals by making the distinction that his client was suing these three banking institutions and not the Swiss government. Giving his clients the best chance to win, Levin offered the Swiss to escape legal action by establishing a $250 compensation fund for Holocaust victims. () The Swiss banks, arrogant about their reputation for being neutral and trustworthy, stubbornly refused the offer. Injecting his own opinion in a newspaper interview, lame-duck Swiss President Jean-Pascal Delamuraz called the offer nothing less than extortion and blackmail. () The WJC would press on, and the banks would regret every next moment. As more documents were being uncovered, the Swiss would try to pacify their opposition by offering settlements upwards of $600 million. Former Swiss President Jean-Pascal Delamuraz even tried apologizing

for his statements against the WJC, but at this point, the WJC wasn't listening. All that mattered now was full disclosure of the truth. Many American Jewish groups began rallying support for full disclosure on the part of the Swiss. Unfortunately, the admission of truth was not a convenience. Banks in California and other U.S. states installed moratoriums on Swiss accounts until the banks acquiesced. In government, Senator Alfonse D'Amoto from New York pushed for U.S. involvement in congress. Finally, the threat of U.S. economic sanctions moved the Swiss banks towards providing the complete truth. ==== ==== Find more Informations here ==== ====