Tags: Dr. Rudolf Kastner

A New Reckoning [חשבון חדש]

Deals with the complex issue of collaboration by focusing on the Hungarian Judenrat leader Kastner, who negotiated with Eichmann for the release of a limited number of Jews.

Kastner [קסטנר]

Lerner's historical drama deals with the Jewish Hungarian leader who negotiated with Eichmann to save a limited number of Jews near the end of World War II and was prosecuted in post-war Israel. To point out the moral quandary of whether negotiating with the Nazis for goods was heroic or an act of collaboration, Lerner begins the play with the indictment of Kastner and closes with Kastner defending himself.


Perdition is a highly controversial play, loosely based on actual circumstances involving Dr. Rudolph Kastner, who negotiatied with Adolph Eichmann, to exchange goods to save 1,685 Jews in Hungary from deportation to the Auschwitz death camp. Kastner was found guilty by an Israeli court of conspiring with the Nazis, a ruling overturned by the Israeli Supreme Court, but not before Kastner was assassinated. Allen’s play, which had its Royal Court Theatre production in London cancelled, suggests that Zionists conspired with the Nazis.