Nuremberg : a cold war conflict of interest / Peter Harlan Maguire
Includes bibliographical references (p. 387-414)
This dissertation examines the Allied and American war crimes prosecutions that came after World War II. The vanquished were not simply charged with violations of the laws of war and executed. Military leaders, political figures, businessmen, lawyers, doctors, and diplomats faced charges of aggression, conspiracy, and crimes against humanity. What were these new criminal categories, would they crumble under the weight of national interest? Chapter I offers a brief overview of the traditions of war and statecraft in the era of the sovereign nation state. Did the American entry into world and European politics in the late nineteenth century overturn European traditions in the conduct of international politics? How did the end of World War I, the Treaty of Versailles, and the League of Nations differ from the way in which wars had previously ended? Chapter II charts the course of America's progressive war crimes plan. Was this a radical departure from customary methods? Who supported it, who opposed it and what were their motives? Chapter III charts the progress of the Ministries case, the final American trial at Nuremberg. The narrative intertwines Cold War history, trial history, and the personal experiences of one American judge in an effort to see how international politics influenced one trial of high ranking German war criminals. Chapter IV asks how and why the German war criminals were released. Was this the result of Cold War exigency or an overambitious policy that failed to pay attention to traditional international political arrangements?
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