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'Confronting the Perpetrators: A History of the Claims Conference'

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Confronting the Perpetrators: A History of the Claims Conference


Marilyn Henry


November 2006


In 1952 Jewish organisations together with representatives of the State of Israel conducted the first negotiations with officials from West Germany for “moral and material amends for Nazi-era damage.” These first formal talks between Jews and Germans after the Holocaust led to the Luxembourg Agreements, under which Germany, then led by Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, agreed to pay 3 billion DMs to Israel and 450 million DMs to the Claims Conference for the relief of survivors outside of Israel.  Germany also agreed to enact legislation to provide compensation and restitution to individual victims of Nazi persecution wherever they might be.

In this book, commissioned by the Claims Conference, Marilyn Henry documents the history of the Claims Conference from its inception in 1951.  She focuses on its work and achievements throughout the ensuing decades "as a vehicle for compensation, restitution and aid for Jewish victims of Nazi persecution".   

In researching the book, the author was given full access to Claims Conference records and archives at its headquarters in New York and at its offices in Frankfurt and Jerusalem. 

Confronting the Perpetrators was published by Vallentine Mitchell in the USA and the UK, ISBN 0 85303 629 2.
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