In the wake of the Second World War, how were the Allies to respond to the enormous crime of the Holocaust? Even in an ideal world, it would have been impossible to bring all the perpetrators to trial. Nevertheless, an attempt was made to prosecute some. Most people have heard of the Nuremberg trial and the Eichmann trial, though they probably have not heard of the Kharkov Trial—the first trial of Germans for Nazi-era crimes—or even the Dachau Trials, in which war criminals were prosecuted by the American military personnel on the former concentration camp grounds. This book uncovers ten “forgotten trials” of the Holocaust, selected from the many Nazi trials that have taken place over the course of the last seven decades. It showcases how perpetrators of the Holocaust were dealt with in courtrooms around the world—in the former Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, Israel, France, Poland, the United States and Germany—revealing how different legal systems responded to the horrors of the Holocaust. The book provides a graphic picture of the genocidal campaign against the Jews through eyewitness testimony and incriminating documents and traces how the public memory of the Holocaust was formed over time. The volume covers a variety of trials—of high-ranking statesmen and minor foot soldiers, of male and female concentration camps guards and even trials in Israel of Jewish Kapos—to provide the first global picture of the laborious efforts to bring perpetrators of the Holocaust to justice. As law professors and litigators, the authors provide distinct insights into these trials.
In the wake of the Second World War, how were the Allies to respond to the enormous crime of the Holocaust? Even in an ideal world, it would have been impossible to bring all the perpetrators to trial. Nevertheless, an attempt was made to prosecute some. Most people have heard of the Nuremberg trial and the Eichmann trial, though they probably have not heard of the Kharkov Trial—the first trial of Germans for Nazi-era crimes—or even the Dachau Trials, in which war criminals were prosecuted by the American military personnel on the former concentration camp grounds. This book uncovers ten “forgotten trials” of the Holocaust, selected from the many Nazi trials that have taken place over the course of the last seven decades. It showcases how perpetrators of the Holocaust were dealt with in courtrooms around the world—in the former Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, Israel, France, Poland, the United States and Germany—revealing how different legal systems responded to the horrors of the Holocaust. The book provides a graphic picture of the genocidal campaign against the Jews through eyewitness testimony and incriminating documents and traces how the public memory of the Holocaust was formed over time. The volume covers a variety of trials—of high-ranking statesmen and minor foot soldiers, of male and female concentration camps guards and even trials in Israel of Jewish Kapos—to provide the first global picture of the laborious efforts to bring perpetrators of the Holocaust to justice. As law professors and litigators, the authors provide distinct insights into these trials.
In the wake of the Second World War, how were the Allies to respond to the enormous crime of the Holocaust? Even in an ideal world, it would have been impossible to bring all the perpetrators to trial. Nevertheless, an attempt was made to prosecute some. This book uncovers ten “forgotten trials” of the Holocaust, selected from the many Nazi trials that have taken place over the course of the last seven decades. It showcases how perpetrators of the Holocaust were dealt with in courtrooms around the world, revealing how different legal systems responded to the horrors of the Holocaust. The book provides a graphic picture of the genocidal campaign against the Jews through eyewitness testimony and incriminating documents and traces how the public memory of the Holocaust was formed over time. Instructor's Guide
From the author of Hiding in the Spotlight, the story of the Kharkov trials, forgotten by history, which sought justice for the thousands killed the Ukraine, a place also overlooked in the annals of the Holocaust When one thinks of the Holocaust, we think of Auschwitz, Dachau; and when we think of justice for this terrible chapter in history, we think of Nuremberg. Not of Russia or the Ukraine, and certainly not of a city called Kharkov. But in reality, the first war-crimes trial against the Nazis was in this idyllic, peaceful Ukrainian city, which is fitting, because it is also where the Holocaust actually began.Eighteen months before the end of World War II—two full years before the opening statement by the prosecution at Nuremberg—three Nazi officers and a Ukrainian collaborator were tried and convicted of war crimes and hanged in Kharkov’s public square. The trial is symbolic of the larger omission of the Ukraine from the popular history of the Holocaust—another deep irony, as most of the first of the six million perished in the Ukraine long before Hitler and his lieutenant seven decided on the formalities of the Final Solution.
In 2006 a long-forgotten canister of film was discovered in a church in Devon, a county located in the southwestern corner of the United Kingdom. No one knew how it had gotten there, but its contents were tantalizing—the grainy black and white footage showed members of the German SS and police building a road in Ukraine and Crimea in 1943. The BBC caused a sensation when it aired the footage, but the film gave few clues to the protagonists or their task. World War II historian G. H. Bennett pieces together the story of the film and its principal characters in The Nazi, the Painter and the Forgotten Story of the SS Road. In his search for answers, Bennett unearthed an overlooked chapter of the Holocaust: a wartime German road-building project led by Walter Gieseke, the Nazi policeman who ended up running the SS task force, that served the dual purpose of exterminating Jewish and other lives while laying the infrastructure for a utopian Nazi haven in the Ukraine. Bennett tells the story of the road and its builders through the experiences of Arnold Daghani, a Romanian artist who was one of the few Jewish laborers to survive the project. Daghani describes the brutal treatment he endured, as well as the beating, torture, and murder of his fellow laborers by the Nazis, and his postwar efforts to bring the perpetrators to justice. Recovering an important but lost episode in the history of World War II and the Holocaust, The Nazi, the Painter and the Forgotten Story of the SS Road is a moving and at times horrifying chronicle of suffering, deprivation, and survival.
One common explanation for the world's failure to prevent the Holocaust is that the information about the Nazi extermination program seemed too incredible to believe. Fifty years later, Americans may now also find it difficult to believe that their fellow citizens were among the twelve million people murdered by the Nazis, abandoned to this fate by their own government.The outbreak of war in Europe put tens of thousands of American civilians, especially Jews, in deadly peril, but the State Department failed to help them. As a consequence of this callous policy many suffered—and some died. Later, when the United States joined the war against Hitler, many brave young Americans were captured and imprisoned. Jewish soldiers were at a special risk—they were sent into battle with a telltale “H” (for “Hebrew'') on their dog tags, which helped the Nazis single them out for mistreatment. One group of Jewish GIs was sent to the brutal Berga labor camp, which had the highest fatality rate of any POW facility. Other POWs were sent to concentration camps, where they became victims of the machinery of the “Final Solution.”Why is it that none of the hundreds of books about the Holocaust has examined the fate of Americans who fell into Nazi hands? Perhaps it is because the number of American victims was relatively small compared to the total that perished. Perhaps it is due to the perception of the Holocaust as a purely European phenomenon; most people assumed that Americans could not have become victims. But, according to Mitchell Bard, the main reason this story has gone untold for a half century is that much of the evidence has been concealed by our own government.The U.S. government had good reasons to cover up this story. The revelation that Americans were mistreated and that their government knew and failed to do anything about it would certainly raise uncomfortable questions about this country's failure to offer safe haven to the Nazis' main target: European Jews. Forgotten Victims provides documentary evidence proving that American officials knew that U.S. civilians and soldiers were in danger, that they were being mistreated (including being placed in concentration camps), and that they were even being murdered by the Nazis. The story of how European Jewry was forsaken by the Western Allies is by now familiar, but this book exposes for the first time the abandonment of American Jews.
At last, the everyday fighting men who were the first Americans to know the full and horrifying truth about the Holocaust share their astonishing stories. Rich with powerful never-before-published details from the author’s interviews with more than 150 U.S. soldiers who liberated the Nazi death camps, The Liberators is an essential addition to the literature of World War II—and a stirring testament to Allied courage in the face of inconceivable atrocities. Taking us from the beginnings of the liberators’ final march across Germany to V-E Day and beyond, Michael Hirsh allows us to walk in their footsteps, experiencing the journey as they themselves experienced it. But this book is more than just an in-depth account of the liberation. It reveals how profoundly these young men were affected by what they saw—the unbelievable horror and pathos they felt upon seeing “stacks of bodies like cordwood” and “skeletonlike survivors” in camp after camp. That life-altering experience has stayed with them to this very day. It’s been well over half a century since the end of World War II, and they still haven’t forgotten what the camps looked like, how they smelled, what the inmates looked like, and how it made them feel. Many of the liberators suffer from what’s now called post-traumatic stress disorder and still experience Holocaust-related nightmares. Here we meet the brave souls who—now in their eighties and nineties—have chosen at last to share their stories. Corporal Forrest Robinson saw masses of dead bodies at Nordhausen and was so horrified that he lost his memory for the next two weeks. Melvin Waters, a 4-F volunteer civilian ambulance driver, recalls that a woman at Bergen-Belsen “fought us like a cat because she thought we were taking her to the crematory.” Private Don Timmer used his high school German to interpret for General Dwight Eisenhower during the supreme Allied commander’s visit to Ohrdruf, the first camp liberated by the Americans. And Phyllis Lamont Law, an army nurse at Mauthausen-Gusen, recalls the shock and, ultimately, “the hope” that “you can save a few.” From Bergen-Belsen in northern Germany to Mauthausen in Austria, The Liberators offers readers an intense and unforgettable look at the Nazi death machine through the eyes of the men and women who were our country’s witnesses to the Holocaust. The liberators’ recollections are historically important, vivid, riveting, heartbreaking, and, on rare occasions, joyous and uplifting. This book is their opportunity, perhaps for the last time, to tell the world. From the Hardcover edition.
Provides a chilling account of the experiments and scientific research performed on human subjects, primarily concentration camp inmates, by Nazi physicians, based on previously unpublished photographs and documents used during the Nuremberg trials.
A great deal of contemporary law has a direct connection to the Holocaust. That connection, however, is seldom acknowledged in legal texts and has never been the subject of a full-length scholarly work. This book examines the background of the Holocaust and genocide through the prism of the law; the criminal and civil prosecution of the Nazis and their collaborators for Holocaust-era crimes; and contemporary attempts to criminally prosecute perpetrators for the crime of genocide. It provides the history of the Holocaust as a legal event, and sets out how genocide has become known as the "crime of crimes" under both international law and in popular discourse. It goes on to discuss specific post-Holocaust legal topics, and examines the Holocaust as a catalyst for post-Holocaust international justice. Together, this collection of subjects establishes a new legal discipline, which the author Michael Bazyler labels "Post-Holocaust Law."
A Daily Telegraph Book of the Year Any trial is an act of theatre. After the horror of the Second World War, the Nuremberg Tribunal became a symbol of the ‘free world’s’ choice of justice in the face of tyranny, aggression and atrocity. But it was only a fragment of retribution as, with their Allies, the British embarked on the largest programme of war crimes investigations and trials in history. This book exposes the deeper truth of this controlled scheme of vengeance. Moving from the scripted trial of Göring, Hess and von Ribbentrop, to the makeshift courtrooms where ‘minor’ war criminals (the psychotic SS officers, the brutal guards, the executioners) were prosecuted, A Passing Fury tells the story of the extraordinary enterprise, the investigators, the lawyers and the perpetrators and asks the question: was justice done? A Passing Fury reassesses the value and flaws of the attempt to do justice in clear, engaging prose, bringing it to life for a new generation and demonstrating its contemporary relevance in responding to ‘evil’.
A groundbreaking study that examines the various ways Jews were betrayed by their fellow countrymen during World War IIIn many cases the Jews betrayed during World War II regarded themselves as Hungarians, Frenchmen, etc., first and Jews second, so persecution came as a terrible shock to them. Many had fought for their country in World War I, but this offered no protection—not even for those awarded the Iron Cross. Their neighbors and school friends betrayed them to the authorities. In turn the authorities "legally" withdrew their rights and also stripped them of their possessions under Aryanization policies. Bodies such as the police and railway companies cooperated with the Nazis in transporting Jews to their deaths. The betrayal did not end in 1945. There is evidence of Holocaust survivors being attacked as they returned home. Historian Agnes Grunwald-Spier reveals, among other accounts, the story of Prosper de Zitter, a Nazi conspirator who betrayed hundreds of Jews to the Gestapo.
Based on extensive archival research, this book offers the first historical examination of the arrest, trial, and punishment of the leaders of the SS-Einsatzgruppen - the mobile security and killing units employed by the Nazis in their racial war on the eastern front. Sent to the Soviet Union in the summer of 1941, four units of Einsatzgruppen along with reinforcements, murdered approximately one million Soviet civilians in open air shootings and in gas vans and, in 1947, twenty-four leaders of these units were indicted for crimes against humanity and war crimes for their part in the murders. In addition to a describing the legal proceedings, this book also examines recent historiographical trends and perpetrator paradigms and expounds on such contested issues as the timing and genesis of the Final Solution, the perpetrators' route to crime and their motivation for killing, as well as discussing the tensions between law and history.
The world remembers Nuremberg, where a handful of Nazi policymakers were brought to justice, but nearly forgotten are the proceedings at Dachau, where hundreds of Nazi guards, officers, and doctors stood trial for personally taking part in the torture and execution of prisoners inside the Dachau, Mauthausen, Flossenburg, and Buchenwald concentration camps. In Justice at Dachau, Joshua M. Greene, maker of the award winning documentary film Witness: Voices from the Holocaust, recreates the Dachau trials and reveals the dramatic story of William Denson, a soft-spoken young lawyer from Alabama whisked from teaching law at West Point to leading the prosecution in the largest series of Nazi trials in history. In a makeshift courtroom set up inside Hitler’s first concentration camp, Denson was charged with building a team from lawyers who had no background in war crimes and determining charges for crimes that courts had never before confronted. Among the accused were Dr. Klaus Schilling, responsible for hundreds of deaths in his “research” for a cure for malaria; Edwin Katzen-Ellenbogen, a Harvard psychologist turned Gestapo informant; and one of history’s most notorious female war criminals, Ilse Koch, “Bitch of Buchenwald,” whose penchant for tattooed skins and human bone lamps made headlines worldwide. Denson, just thirty-two years old, with one criminal trial to his name, led a brilliant and successful prosecution, but nearly two years of exposure to such horrors took its toll. His wife divorced him, his weight dropped to 116 pounds, and he collapsed from exhaustion. Worst of all was the pressure from his army superiors to bring the trials to a rapid end when their agenda shifted away from punishing Nazis to winning the Germans’ support in the emerging Cold War. Denson persevered, determined to create a careful record of responsibility for the crimes of the Holocaust. When, in a final shocking twist, the United States used clandestine reversals and commutation of sentences to set free those found guilty at Dachau, Denson risked his army career to try to prevent justice from being undone. From the Hardcover edition.
Human Rights after Hitler is a groundbreaking history about the forgotten work of the UN War Crimes Commission (UNWCC), which operated during and after World War II in response to Axis atrocities. He explains the commission's work, why its files were kept secret, and demonstrates how the lost precedents of the commission's indictments should introduce important new paradigms for prosecuting war crimes today. The UNWCC examined roughly 36,000 cases in Europe and Asia. Thousands of trials were carried out at the country-level, and hundreds of war criminals were convicted. This rewrites the history of human rights in the wake of World War II, which is too focused on the few trials at Nuremberg and Tokyo. Until a protracted lobbying effort by Plesch and colleagues, the UNWCC's files had been kept out of public view in the UN archives under pressure from the US government. The US initially wanted the files closed to smooth the way for post-war collaboration with Germany and Japan, and the few researchers who did gain permission to see the files were not permitted to even take notes until the files' recent release. Now revealed, the precedents set by these cases should have enormous practical utility for prosecuting war crimes today.
The controversial journalistic analysis of the mentality that fostered the Holocaust, from the author of The Origins of Totalitarianism Sparking a flurry of heated debate, Hannah Arendt’s authoritative and stunning report on the trial of German Nazi leader Adolf Eichmann first appeared as a series of articles in The New Yorker in 1963. This revised edition includes material that came to light after the trial, as well as Arendt’s postscript directly addressing the controversy that arose over her account. A major journalistic triumph by an intellectual of singular influence, Eichmann in Jerusalem is as shocking as it is informative—an unflinching look at one of the most unsettling (and unsettled) issues of the twentieth century.
This book examines the use of national and international law to prosecute Nazi crimes, the centerpiece of twentieth-century state-sponsored genocide and mass murder crimes, the paradigmatic instance of state-sponsored criminality and genocide in the twentieth century. Its various essays, the contributors reconstruct the historical historical setting of the crimes committed under the aegis of the Nazi regime and examine why postwar adjudication took place only within limits, within the national and international judicial forums responsible for prosecuting perpetrators. The topics discussed include the impact of the Nazi justice system on postwar justice, postwar legal proceedings against those who committed war crimes and genocide, the work of the Nuremberg tribunal and Allied trials, and judicial investigations and prosecutions in East Germany, West Germany, and Austria. They span the postwar period up to contemporary U.S. legal efforts to deport Nazi criminals within its borders and libel trials against Holocaust denials in London and Canadian courts and libel suits brought by Holocaust deniers in British and Canadian courts, and they reveal new perspectives on the present and future implications of these trials.
Nazis after Hitler traces the histories of thirty "typical" perpetrators of the Holocaust—some well known, some obscure—who survived World War II. Donald M. McKale reveals the shocking reality that the perpetrators were only rarely, if ever, tried and punished for their crimes, and nearly all alleged their innocence in Germany's extermination of nearly six million European Jews during the war, providing fodder for postwar Holocaust deniers. Written in a compelling narrative style, Nazis after Hitler is the first to provide an overview of the lives of Nazis who survived the war, the vast majority of whom escaped justice. McKale provides a unique and accessible synthesis of the extensive research on the Holocaust and Nazi war criminals that will be invaluable for all readers interested in World War II.
The Holocaust is an atrocity of such overwhelming magnitude and depravity that it must never be forgotten yet can scarcely be comprehended. The sheer horror of it can often make it seem unreal to contemporary eyes. The primary-source images, firsthand accounts, meticulous timeline, and transcripts of speeches and testimony associated with the Nuremberg Trials and the Nazi crimes they prosecuted are found here, grounding the horror in undeniable, irrefutable reality. Taken together, they help ensure for a new generation that the Holocaust will never be forgotten, never be denied, and never be repeated.
When the Allies tried German war criminals at the end of WWII they were trying not only to punish the guilty but also to set down a history of Nazism and of what had happened in Europe. Bloxham shows the reality was that these proceeedings failed.
The Holocaust was not only the greatest murder in history; it was also the greatest theft. Historians estimate that the Nazis stole roughly $230 billion to $320 billion in assets (figured in today’s dollars), from the Jews of Europe. Since the revelations concerning the wartime activities of the Swiss banks first broke in the late 1990s, an ever-widening circle of complicity and wrongdoing against Jews and other victims has emerged in the course of lawsuits waged by American lawyers. These suits involved German corporations, French and Austrian banks, European insurance companies, and double thefts of art—first by the Nazis, and then by museums and private collectors refusing to give them up. All of these injustices have come to light thanks to the American legal system. Holocaust Justice is the first book to tell the complete story of the legal campaign, conducted mainly on American soil, to address these injustices. Michael Bazyler, a legal scholar specializing in human rights and international law, takes an in-depth look at the series of lawsuits that gave rise to a coherent campaign to right historical wrongs. Diplomacy, individual pleas for justice by Holocaust survivors and various Jewish organizations for the last fifty years, and even suits in foreign courts, had not worked. It was only with the intervention of the American courts that elderly Holocaust survivors and millions of other wartime victims throughout the world were awarded compensation, and equally important, acknowledgment of the crimes committed against them. The unique features of the American system of justice—which allowed it to handle claims that originated over fifty years ago and in another part of the world—made it the only forum in the world where Holocaust claims could be heard. Without the lawsuits brought by American lawyers, Bazyler asserts, the claims of the elderly survivors and their heirs would continue to be ignored. For the first time in history, European and even American corporations are now being forced to pay restitution for war crimes totaling billions of dollars to Holocaust survivors and other victims. Bazyler deftly tells the unfolding stories: the Swiss banks’ attempt to hide dormant bank accounts belonging to Holocaust survivors or heirs of those who perished in the war; German private companies that used slave laborers during World War II—including American subsidiaries in Germany; Italian, Swiss and German insurance companies that refused to pay on prewar policies; and the legal wrangle going on today in American courts over art looted by the Nazis in wartime Europe. He describes both the human and legal dramas involved in the struggle for restitution, bringing the often-forgotten voices of Holocaust survivors to the forefront. He also addresses the controversial legal and moral issues over Holocaust restitution and the ethical debates over the distribution of funds. With an eye to the future, Bazyler discusses the enduring legacy of Holocaust restitution litigation, which is already being used as a model for obtaining justice for historical wrongs on both the domestic and international stage.

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