Today, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) was joined by a bipartisan group of 19 House Members in sending a letter to the Hungarian government calling for prompt and robust prosecution of Nazi war criminal Ladislaus Csizsik-Csatary for heinous crimes perpetuated against thousands of Jews and others during World War II. The letter, addressed to Hungarian President Janos Ader and Prime Minister Viktor Orban, urges that Csizsik-Csatary – whom the Simon Wiesenthal Center has called the world’s most wanted Nazi war criminal – be brought swiftly to justice.
“We urge you to do all you can to see that Ladislaus Csizsik-Csatary answers for his crimes quickly and without any delay,” reads the letter. “That his crimes occurred years ago is not, and cannot be used as, an excuse to avoid action. The many years since World War II, in which he has enjoyed life, freedom, and dignity, are years he denied to so many Jews….[W]hile we cannot undo the tragedy of the Holocaust, we can make sure the evil people responsible for its horrors are punished. By holding these people accountable, we honor the lives lost and ensure that we never forget what happened.”
Below is the full text of the letter:
July 24, 2012
The Honorable Janos Ader
Republic of Hungary
Pf. 227, H-1536
The Honorable Viktor Orban
Republic of Hungary
Pf. 6, H-1357
Dear President Ader and Prime Minister Orban:
We write to urge you in the strongest possible terms to immediately bring to justice the notorious Nazi war criminal Ladislaus Csizsik-Csatary. He was recently discovered living in Budapest.
During World War II, Mr. Csizsik-Csatary was a commander in the Royal Hungarian Police. He was in charge of officers who guarded a Jewish ghetto in the town of Kassa (what is now Kocise, Slovakia). A true sadist, he showed extremely cruelty toward the Jews in Kassa. This cruelty included beating women with a whip, forcing people to dig ditches with their bare hands, and enforcing a policy of shooting those with the courage to try to escape.
Most notoriously, Mr. Csizsik-Csatary coordinated the deportation of approximately 15,700 Jews to Auschwitz and 300 Jews to Ukraine in 1944. Almost all of those deported were murdered by the Nazis.
In 1948, for his crimes against humanity, Mr. Csizsik-Csatary was convicted in absentia in Czechoslovakia and sentenced to death. Like the true coward that he is he fled his punishment and, by lying about his background, was able to establish himself in Canada. He fled again in 1997 when his true past was revealed and he has been on the run ever since. The Simon Wiesenthal Center lists him as the number one most wanted Nazi war criminal.
That his crimes occurred years ago is not, and cannot be used as, an excuse to avoid action. The many years since World War II, in which he has enjoyed life, freedom, and dignity, are years he denied to so many Jews. Justice for crimes like his, those against humanity itself, is always necessary. It is time to see that he receives the justice he deserves.
Additionally, while we cannot undo the tragedy of the Holocaust, we can make sure the evil people responsible for its horrors are punished. By holding these people accountable, we honor the lives lost and ensure that we never forget what happened.
We urge you to do all you can to see that Ladislaus Csizsik-Csatary answers for his crimes. We look forward to your prompt action in this matter.
Howard L. Berman
Gary L. Ackerman
Eliot L. Engel
David N. Cicilline
Theodore E. Deutch
Robert L. Turner
Carolyn B. Maloney
James P. McGovern
Christopher S. Murphy
Charles B. Rangel
Janice D. Schakowsky
Adam B. Schiff