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Author Plesch, Daniel, author.

Title Human rights after Hitler : the lost history of prosecuting Axis war crimes / Dan Plesch.

Publication Info. Washington, DC : Georgetown University Press, [2017]
Location Call No. Status
 95th Street Adult Nonfiction  341.69 PLE    AVAILABLE
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Description xx, 251 pages ; 24 cm
Contents Prosecuting rape : a test case of the modern relevance of WW2 legal practice -- Key issues faced in prosecuting SGBV today -- Conclusion -- A new paradigm for providing justice for international human rights violations -- Legal and political amnesia -- Creation of the UNWCC -- Official resistance to prosecuting war crimes -- Chinese and indian leadership -- A global system of complementary justice -- The development of key international legal principles -- When Stalin, Churchill, and FDR condemned the Holocaust -- Early Allied condemnations of the Holocaust and Nazi atrocities -- The declaration -- Abandonment of the Jews nonetheless -- Pursuing war criminals all over the world -- A global achievement -- Commission members and their trial structures -- Conclusion -- The Holocaust indictments : prosecuting the "footsoldiers of atrocity" -- Belgium -- Czechoslovakia -- France -- Greece -- Luxembourg -- The Netherlands -- Norway -- Poland -- Yugoslavia -- United Kingdom and United States -- United States -- Fair trials and collective responsibility for criminal acts -- The fundamentals of fair trials -- "It wasn't illegal when the action was taken" : the nullum crimen defense -- Hearsay -- The rights of the accused -- Command responsibility -- Superior orders -- Group responsibility -- Responsibility -- Reprisals and the execution of hostages -- The overall effort to secure the rights of the accused at the time of trial -- Conclusion -- Crimes against humanity : the "freedom to lynch," and the indictments of Adolf Hitler -- Crimes against humanity -- The crime of aggression -- Universal jurisdiction -- Liberating the Nazis -- Forgetting the Nazi past to build a West German future -- Harry S. Truman and State Department hostility to the commission -- Opposition to the commission's closure -- Ongoing prosecution of war crimes -- Prisoner release -- Conclusion -- The legacy unleashed -- The peoples' human rights -- Complementarity and the UNWCC -- Toward a "UNWCC 2.0"? -- Conclusion -- Appendix A : Timeline of principal allied political responses to Axis atrocities -- Appendix B : A note on the UNWCC archives and related material -- Appendix C : The UNWCC in ICTY verdicts -- Appendix D : One of the early UNWCC charge files for the Treblinka Death Camp -- Appendix E : An early Polish charge file against a range of Germans involved in the concentration camp system.
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index.
Summary 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.
Subject United Nations War Crimes Commission -- History.
War crime trials -- History -- 20th century.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Atrocities.
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945) -- Historiography.
ISBN 9781626164314 (hardcover ; alkaline paper)
1626164312 (hardcover ; alkaline paper)
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