The SUBSEQUENT NUREMBERG TRIALS (formally the TRIALS OF WAR CRIMINALS
BEFORE THE NUREMBERG MILITARY TRIBUNALS) were a series of twelve U.S.
military tribunals for war crimes against members of the leadership of
Nazi Germany , held in the Palace of Justice ,
Nuremberg , after World
War II from 1946 to 1949 following the Trial of the Major War
Criminals before the
International Military Tribunal .
* 1 Background
* 2 Trials
* 3 Result
* 4 Criticism
* 4.1 Conduct of the prosecution
* 5 See also
* 6 References
* 7 Further reading
* 8 External links
Although it had been initially planned to hold more than just one
international trial at the IMT, the growing differences between the
victorious allies (the United States, United Kingdom, France, and
Soviet Union ) made this impossible. However, the Control Council Law
No. 10, which the
Allied Control Council
Allied Control Council had issued on 20 December
1945, empowered any of the occupying authorities to try suspected war
criminals in their respective occupation zones. Based on this law, the
U.S. authorities proceeded after the end of the initial Nuremberg
Trial against the major war criminals to hold another twelve trials in
Nuremberg. The judges in all these trials were American, and so were
the prosecutors; the Chief of Counsel for the Prosecution was
Telford Taylor . In the other occupation zones
similar trials took place.
The twelve U.S. trials before the
Nuremberg Military Tribunals (NMT)
took place from 9 December 1946 to 13 April 1949. The trials were as
9 December 1946 – 20 August 1947
23 Nazi physicians of the
2 January – 14 April 1947
Erhard Milch of the
5 March – 4 December 1947
16 Nazi German "racial purity" jurists
8 April – 3 November 1947
Oswald Pohl and 17 SS officers
19 April – 22 December 1947
Friedrich Flick and 5 directors of his companies
IG Farben Trial
IG Farben Trial
27 August 1947 – 30 July 1948
IG Farben , maker of
8 July 1947 – 19 February 1948
12 German generals of the Balkan Campaign
20 October 1947 – 10 March 1948
14 racial cleansing and resettlement officials
29 September 1947 – 10 April 1948
24 officers of
8 December 1947 – 31 July 1948
12 directors of the
6 January 1948 – 13 April 1949
21 officials of Reich ministries
High Command Trial
30 December 1947 – 28 October 1948
14 High Command generals
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Nuremberg process initiated 3,887 cases of which 3400 were
dropped. Less than 500 cases (489) went to trial that involved 1672
defendants. 1416 were found guilty, but less than 200 were executed.
Another 279 defendants were sent to life in prison but by the 1950s
almost all of them had been released.
Many of the longer prison sentences were reduced substantially by
decree of high commissioner
John J. McCloy
John J. McCloy in 1951, and 10 outstanding
death sentences from the
Einsatzgruppen Trial were converted to prison
terms. The same year, an amnesty released many of those who had
received prison sentences.
Some of the NMTs have been criticised for their conclusion that
"moral bombing" of civilians, including its nuclear variety , was
legal, and for their judgement that, in certain situations, executing
civilians in reprisal was permissible.
CONDUCT OF THE PROSECUTION
In a 2005 interview for the
Washington Post ,
Benjamin B. Ferencz ,
Chief Prosecutor for the United States Army at the Einsatzgruppen
Trial, revealed some of his activities during his period in Germany.
"Someone who was not there could never really grasp how unreal the
situation was," he said. The Americans delivered at least a dozen
low-ranking German SS suspects to displaced persons camps for the
purpose of having them executed by the DPs ("displaced persons"),
without prior trial or sentencing. Under military law at that time, it
was legal to hand over suspects to their victims for further
questioning. "I once saw DPs beat an SS man and then strap him to
the steel gurney of a crematorium. They slid him in the oven, turned
on the heat and took him back out. Beat him again, and put him back in
until he was burnt alive. I did nothing to stop it. I suppose I could
have brandished my weapon or shot in the air, but I was not inclined
to do so. Does that make me an accomplice to murder?"
In the interview, Ferencz also pointed out that the military legal
norms at the time permitted actions that would not be possible today.
"You know how I got witness statements? I'd go into a village where,
say, an American pilot had parachuted and been beaten to death and
line everyone up against the wall. Then I'd say, 'Anyone who lies will
be shot on the spot.' It never occurred to me that statements taken
under duress would be invalid."
Auschwitz Trial held in
Kraków , Poland in 1947 against 40
SS-staff of the
Auschwitz concentration camp
Auschwitz concentration camp death factory
Frankfurt Auschwitz Trials , 1963–65
Majdanek Trials , the longest Nazi war crimes trial in history,
spanning over 30 years
Chełmno Trials of the
Chełmno extermination camp
Chełmno extermination camp personnel, held
in Poland and in Germany. The cases were decided almost twenty years
Sobibor Trial held in
Hagen , Germany in 1965, concerning the
Sobibor extermination camp
Sobibor extermination camp
Belzec Trial before the 1st
Munich District Court in the
mid-1960s, eight SS-men of the
Belzec extermination camp
Belzec extermination camp
Belsen Trial in Lüneburg, 1945
Command responsibility doctrine of hierarchical accountability
Dachau Trials held within the walls of the former Dachau
concentration camp , 1945–1948
Mauthausen-Gusen camp trials , 1946–47
* Research Materials: Max Planck Society Archive
* ^ A B C Kevin Jon Heller (2011). The Trials. Introduction: the
indictments, biographical information, and the verdicts. The Nuremberg
Military Tribunals and the Origins of International Criminal Law.
Oxford University Press. pp. 85–. Retrieved 10 January 2015.
* ^ Nelson, Anne (April 2009). Red Orchestra: The Story of the
Berlin Underground and the Circle of Friends Who Resisted Hitler.
Random House. pp. 305–6.
* ^ Heller, Kevin Jon (2011). The
Nuremberg Military Tribunals and
the Origins of International Criminal Law. Oxford: Oxford University
Press . p. 3.
* ^ A B C Brzezinski, Matthew (24 July 2005). "Giving Hitler Hell".
Washington Post . Retrieved 6 October 2012.
* Dubois, Josiah E. (1952). The Devil\'s Chemists (PDF). Boston, MA:
Beacon Press . ASIN B000ENNDV6 .
* Priemel, Kim C., and Alexa Stiller, eds. Reassessing the Nuremberg
Military Tribunals: Transitional Justice, Trial Narratives, and
Historiography (Berghahn Books; 2012) 321 pages
* The NMT