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Original cation reads: Baldur von Schirach, once head of the "Hitler Jugend", (Hitler Youth Movement) on the stand in his own defense before the International Military Tribunal trials, in Nuremberg, Germany.

Photograph | Digitized | Photograph Number: 80272

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    Original cation reads: Baldur von Schirach, once head of the "Hitler Jugend", (Hitler Youth Movement) on the stand in his own defense before the International Military Tribunal trials, in Nuremberg, Germany.
    Original cation reads: Baldur von Schirach, once head of the "Hitler Jugend", (Hitler Youth Movement) on the stand in his own defense before the International Military Tribunal trials, in Nuremberg, Germany.

Baldur von Sirach was found guilty and sentenced to twenty years imprisonment.

    Overview

    Caption
    Original cation reads: Baldur von Schirach, once head of the "Hitler Jugend", (Hitler Youth Movement) on the stand in his own defense before the International Military Tribunal trials, in Nuremberg, Germany.

    Baldur von Sirach was found guilty and sentenced to twenty years imprisonment.
    Photographer
    Eddie Murphy
    Date
    1946 May 25
    Locale
    Nuremberg, [Bavaria] Germany
    Variant Locale
    Nurnberg
    Photo Credit
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Eddie Murphy (Estate)
    Event History
    The International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg indicted several Nazi groups and organizations which it declared to be criminal, in addition to the 21 individual leaders of the Third Reich that appeared in the defendants dock. These organizations included the Reich Cabinet, the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party, the Elite Guard (SS), the Security Service (SD,) the Secret State Police (Gestapo), the Stormtroopers (SA), and the General Staff and High Command of the German Armed Forces.

    The idea behind this novel and controversial proposal was the desire to deal with two problems: (a) finding a legal basis for punishing German crimes committed before the war, and (b) developing a procedure for dealing with the hundreds of thousands of members of the SS and other Nazi organizations implicated in German atrocities. The prosecutors felt that in these organizations there were so many war criminals that individual trials were impossible and that the perpetrators could only be punished on the basis of their proven membership in a criminal organization.

    The tribunal, in accordance with its charter, ordered that notices of the impending trials be disseminated throughout Germany. Announcements were published in the German press, broadcast over the radio and posted in internment and POW camps where many of those affected were being held. The response to the trial notices was overwhelming. The deluge of letters, affidavits and applications to be heard in support of the Nazi organizations presented the tribunal with staggering logistical problems. In response, the judges on March 12, 1946 announced their decision to appoint a commissioner charged with the responsibility of reviewing the submissions and hearing witnesses. He was to report to the tribunal the results of his examinations. The judges also gave permission to defense counsel to visit the camps to select witnesses to testify about the accused organizations.

    Lt. Col. Airey Neave, a highly decorated British officer, was named commissioner. On May 20, 1946 he began to hear witnesses, but quickly found that there were too many for him to cope with alone. As a result, several assistant commissioners, one each from the US, the USSR and France, were appointed. Over the life of the commission (May 20-August 12, 1946), 101 witnesses were heard in person and hundreds of thousands of affidavits, submitted on behalf of the various Nazi organizations, were reviewed.

    The hearings were held in a large room at the Nuremberg courthouse that was dominated by an elevated platform, where the commissioner or his assistant sat. Next to him was the court reporter. In front and to the left of the court reporter were the representatives of the prosecution and defense, and on the right, at the front was the witness. Commission sessions usually lasted about three hours and were held in the morning and again in the afternoon. The single interpreter, who sat to the right and in front of the commissioner, was responsible for the consecutive interpretation from English to German and from German to English, the only two languages used in the proceedings. (The Russian prosecutor was usually accompanied by his personal interpreter.) A second interpreter (who was expected to relieve the one on duty at the break), usually sat behind the interpreter on duty. (There were a total of three interpreters, working two days on and one day off.) In the rear of the room were seats for perhaps twenty visitors.

    Examination of the witnesses was handled by lawyers designated to defend the organizations or, on occasion, by the lawyers of the individual defendants before the tribunal. Cross examination was generally handled by Robert Kempner, one of the American assistant prosecutors and Mervyn Griffith-Jones of the UK, and less frequently by Col. Yuri Pokrovsky of the USSR and Henri Monneray of France. The witnesses heard by the commission ranged from the top to the bottom of the hierarchical ladder, from Gauleiter, deputy minister and field marshal to local officials. Among the more prominent witnesses were: Dr. Helmut Knochen, head of the SD in France; Dieter Wilisceny, deputy to Adolf Eichmann, SS; Dr. Franz Schlegelberger, State Secretary/Deputy Minister of Justice; Walter Schellenberg, Chief, SS Foreign Intelligence; and General Field Marshalls Gerd von Rundstedt and Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb.

    After receiving the six reports submitted by the commission, the tribunal issued its judgement on September 30 and October 1, 1946. While the leadership corps of the Nazi Party, the Gestapo, SD and the SS were all found guilty, the SA, Reich Cabinet and General Staff and the High Command were found not guilty.

    [Source, Schwab, Gerald, "The Trial of Nazi Organizations as Part of the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal," (unpublished article, June 14, 2002)].

    https://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php?ModuleId=10007069.

    Rights & Restrictions

    Photo Source
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Copyright: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Provenance: Eddie Murphy (Estate)

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Biography
    Eddie Mills Murphy (the photographer) served as a Private First Class in the United States Army, 3264th Signal Photo Battalion. He was stationed in Wiesbaden, Germany and was assigned as a photographer at The International Military Tribunal, also known as the Nuremberg War Trials, in 1945 and 1946.
    Record last modified:
    2013-06-04 00:00:00
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