On December 15, 1961, a man was sentenced to death by a civilian tribunal in an Israeli civilian court, the only individual ever to have achieved that distinction. The condemned was Adolf Eichmann, the “architect of the Final Solution to the Jewish Question.” He wasn’t executed because he had failed at his job; Eichmann was hanged because he had succeeded all too well. The work of this architect is remembered because of cattle cars, barbed wire, the remains of giant ovens, and the mass graves of six million Jewish men, women and children. Born in Solingen, Germany, in 1906, Eichmann moved with his family to Linz, Austria when he was eight years old. Although raised a Christian, it was there that he joined the Nazi Party and began his rise through its ranks. In 1933, when the Nazis came to power in Germany, he sought admission to the SS and was assigned to the administrative staff at the Dachau concentration camp. When the German army invaded Austria in 1938, Eichmann was assigned the task of eliminating all Jews from the newly annexed region. His efficiency landed Eichmann a new job as head of the Jewish Emigration Office where it was hoped he could duplicate his success in eradicating Jews from other regions. But as the war expanded, and countries closed their borders to Jewish refugees, removing Jews from German territory grew problematic and the Nazis turned to the Final Solution.