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The Nuremberg Main Trials - Essay Example

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Name of of Professor The Nuremberg Trials Introduction It is now safe to assume, after more than sixty years of retrospection, that the International Military Tribunal (IMT) in the Nuremberg Trials was a historical episode of global magnitude…
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The Nuremberg Main Trials
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Download file to see previous pages However, Nuremberg was flawed, to a certain extent, and it is sensible to assume that its imperfections could be the most integral features of it deserving of attention at present. Still, many would believe that there are other features, as well, and that a number of these address undying desires for the triumph of fairness and justice.2 This essay examines the appropriateness of the indictments, the issue of jurisdiction, and general questions of legality with reference to the ‘fair trial principle’ in the Nuremberg main trial. Appropriateness of the Indictments The function of the IMT at Nuremberg was to formally question the ‘main’ German war criminals. IMT had two members from each of the four participating nations, namely, the United States, Great Britain, France, and the Soviet Union. These members would shape various paradigms of criminal law and process.3 The IMT mission was instigated in 1945, as soon as the Committee of Chief Counsels of the four parties to the London Agreement—a declaration that specify the guidelines and law through which the Nuremberg trials were to be carried out-- approved and passed an indictment laying down the criminal acts arraigned against the ‘main’ war criminals.4 The indictment convicted them with four violations: ‘(1) common plan or conspiracy, (2) crimes against peace, (3) war crimes, and (4) crimes against humanity.’5 Common plan or conspiracy The scholars of the Nuremberg Trials claimed that it is crucial to impugn the guiltiest offenders for conniving to pursue the Nazi persecution of the Jews and other acts of violence. Nevertheless, it was not a war misdeed for the nation to perpetrate acts of violence against its own people.6 For that reason, “[t]he American motives for spinning the dense web of conspiracy to inculpate the Nazi brass is no secret in that the stratagem was essentially intended to procure legal grounds for holding the instigators of the Nazi movement accountable for the record of ‘domestic’ bestialities against assorted segments of their own population, including the Jewish minority.”7 In view of that, a conspiracy conviction was seen crucial so as to impugn individuals for planning or pursuing a common plan to perpetrate crimes against civilians. The Tribunal took into account the indictment of common plan or conspiracy on the basis of two rationales: first is the blameworthiness of organisations, and second is whether the war criminals had connived to pursue genocide and persecution. The latter rationale was settled under the accusation of ‘crimes against peace’.8 The Tribunal, as regards to the accusation of ‘conspiracy’, simply deemed: In the opinion of the Tribunal, the evidence establishes the common planning to prepare and wage war by certain of the defendants. It is immaterial to consider whether a single conspiracy... has been conclusively proved.9 Moreover, the Tribunal resolutely strived to lessen the possible perils to minor collaborators or innocent members which could have stemmed from its judgment to charge four organisations of war crimes.10 As claimed by Professor Schwarzenberger, “ ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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