In October 2021 we had the 75th anniversary of the judgement of the Nuremberg military tribunal at which twenty-two top political and military leaders of the Third Reich were put on trial. Stories of Hitler’s war were aired in the world media for the best part of a year, and the trial set out a public narrative of Nazi crimes.
Nuremberg is still this term that gets invoked today – it seems to set the terms of our current understanding on international criminal justice. And also gets abused by some conspiracy theorist and anti-vaxxers, so we thought we’d explore some of the meanings, myths and realities of Nuremberg.
Francine Hirsch is the Vylas distinguished achievement Professor of History at University Wisconsin Madison and recently wrote Soviet Judgment at Nuremberg A new history of the International Military Tribunal after World War II.
And Diane Marie Amann is the University of Georgia Regents’ Professor of International Law, Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law, and Faculty Co-Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center. She’s writing a book about women at Nuremberg.
A book that comes up several times by the Chief US prosecutor at Nuremberg, Telford Taylor is The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials: A Personal Memoir. And the artwork by Dame Laura Knight we mention can be seen here or at the Imperial War Museum in London.
Fran has been watching a Russian series – The Optimists – set during the Cold War, intertwining the geopolitical and the personal. Diane has been reading The Execution of Willie Francis about racism and justice in the American South in the 1940’s.