Author: Tomaz Jardim
Publisher: Harvard University Press
The Nuremberg trials are regarded as models of postwar justice, but the Mauthausen trial was the norm and reveals the troubling face of American military proceedings. This rough justice, with its lax rules of evidence and questionable interrogations, compromised legal standards in order to guarantee that guilty people did not walk free.
The Trials of an American Prosecutor
Author: Joshua Greene
Publisher: Broadway Books
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.
The Abandonment Of Americans In Hitler's Camps
Author: Mitchel G Bard
Publisher: Westview Press
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.
America's Witnesses to the Holocaust
Author: Michael Hirsh
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.
Sources, Approaches, Debates
Author: Uzi Rebhun
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Continuing its distinguished tradition of focusing on central political, sociological, and cultural issues of Jewish life in the last century, this latest volume in the annual Studies in Contemporary Jewry series focuses on how Jewry has been studied in the social science disciplines. Its symposium consists of essays that discuss sources, approaches, and debates in the complementary fields of demography, sociology, economics, and geography. The social sciences are central for the understanding of contemporary Jewish life and have engendered much controversy over the past few decades. To a large extent, the multitude of approaches toward Jewish social science research reflects the nature of population studies in general, and that of religions and ethnic groups in particular. Yet the variation in methodology, definitions, and measures of demographic, socioeconomic, and cultural patterns is even more salient in the study of Jews. Different data sets have different definitions for what is "Jewish" or "who is a Jew." In addition, Jews as a group are characterized by high rates of migration, including repeated migration, which makes it difficult to track any given Jewish population. Finally, the question of identification is complicated by the fact that in most places, especially outside of Israel, it is not clear whether "being Jewish" is primarily a religious or an ethnic matter - or both, or neither. This volume also features an essay on American Jewry and North African Jewry; review essays on rebuilding after the Holocaust, Nazi war crimes trials, and Jewish historiography; and reviews of new titles in Jewish studies.
Author: Kevin Heller,Gerry Simpson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Several war crimes trials are well-known to scholars, but others have received far less attention. This book assesses a number of these little-studied trials to recognise institutional innovations, clarify doctrinal debates, and identify their general relevance to the development of international criminal law.
From Nuremberg to Nuremberg
Author: John J. Michalczyk
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
A distinguished group of scholars from Germany, Israel and right across the United States are brought together in Nazi Law to investigate the ways in which Hitler and the Nazis used the law as a weapon, mainly against the Jews, to establish and progress their master plan for German society. The book looks at how, after assuming power in 1933, the Nazi Party manipulated the legal system and the constitution in its crusade against Communists, Jews, homosexuals, as well as Jehovah's Witnesses and other religious and racial minorities, resulting in World War II and the Holocaust. It then goes on to analyse how the law was subsequently used by the opponents of Nazism in the wake of World War Two to punish them in the war crime trials at Nuremberg. This is a valuable edited collection of interest to all scholars and students interested in Nazi Germany and the Holocaust.
A Report on the Banality of Evil
Author: Hannah Arendt
Category: Social Science
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.
The War Crimes Trial Controversy
Author: Steven P. Remy
Publisher: Harvard University Press
During the Battle of the Bulge, Waffen SS soldiers shot 84 American prisoners near Malmedy, Belgium—the deadliest mass execution of U.S. soldiers during World War II. Drawing on newly declassified documents, Steven Remy revisits the massacre and the most infamously controversial war crimes trial in American history, to set the record straight.
Ordinary Nazis and the Holocaust
Author: Mary Fulbrook
Publisher: OUP Oxford
The Silesian town of Bedzin lies a mere twenty-five miles from Auschwitz; through the linked ghettos of Bedzin and its neighbouring town, some 85,000 Jews passed on their way to slave labour or the gas chambers. The principal civilian administrator of Bedzin, Udo Klausa, was a happily married family man. He was also responsible for implementing Nazi policies towards the Jews in his area - inhumane processes that were the precursors of genocide. Yet he later claimed, like so many other Germans after the war, that he had 'known nothing about it'; and that he had personally tried to save a Jew before he himself managed to leave for military service. A Small Town Near Auschwitz re-creates Udo Klausa's story. Using a wealth of personal letters, memoirs, testimonies, interviews and other sources, Mary Fulbrook pieces together his role in the unfolding stigmatization and degradation of the Jews under his authoritiy, as well as the heroic attempts at resistance on the part of some of his victims. She also gives us a fascinating insight into the inner conflicts of a Nazi functionary who, throughout, considered himself a 'decent' man. And she explores the conflicting memories and evasions of his life after the war. But the book is much more than a portrayal of an individual man. Udo Klausa's case is so important because it is in many ways so typical. Behind Klausa's story is the larger story of how countless local functionaries across the Third Reich facilitated the murderous plans of a relatively small number among the Nazi elite - and of how those plans could never have been realized, on the same scale, without the diligent cooperation of these generally very ordinary administrators. As Fulbrook shows, men like Klausa 'knew' and yet mostly suppressed this knowledge, performing their day jobs without apparent recognition of their own role in the system, or any sense of personal wrongdoing or remorse - either before or after 1945. This account is no ordinary historical reconstruction. For Fulbrook did not discover Udo Klausa amongst the archives. She has known the Klausa family all her life. She had no inkling of her subject's true role in the Third Reich until a few years ago, a discovery that led directly to this inescapably personal professional history.
Making Law and History in the Trials of the Holocaust
Author: Lawrence Douglas
Publisher: Yale University Press
This is an examination of the law's response to the crimes of the Holocaust. It studies exemplary proceedings including the Nuremberg trial of the major Nazi war criminals and the Israeli trials of Adolf Eichmann and John Demjanjuk.
Author: Rebecca Wittmann
Publisher: Harvard University Press
In 1963, West Germany was gripped by a dramatic trial of former guards who had worked at the Nazi death camp Auschwitz. It was the largest and most public trial to take place in the country and attracted international attention. Using the pretrial files and extensive trial audiotapes, Rebecca Wittmann offers a fascinating reinterpretation of Germany’s first major attempt to confront its past.
How Perpetrators of the Holocaust Cheated Justice and Truth
Author: Donald M. McKale
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
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.
Genocide, History, and the Limits of the Law
Author: Devin O. Pendas
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
A comprehensive history of the Frankfurt Auschwitz trial.
The End of the Holocaust and Its Aftermath
Author: Dan Stone
Publisher: Yale University Press
Seventy years have passed since the tortured inmates of Hitler’s concentration and extermination camps were liberated. When the horror of the atrocities came fully to light, it was easy for others to imagine the joyful relief of freed prisoners. Yet for those who had survived the unimaginable, the experience of liberation was a slow, grueling journey back to life. In this unprecedented inquiry into the days, months, and years following the arrival of Allied forces at the Nazi camps, a foremost historian of the Holocaust draws on archival sources and especially on eyewitness testimonies to reveal the complex challenges liberated victims faced and the daunting tasks their liberators undertook to help them reclaim their shattered lives. Historian Dan Stone focuses on the survivors—their feelings of guilt, exhaustion, fear, shame for having survived, and devastating grief for lost family members; their immense medical problems; and their later demands to be released from Displaced Persons camps and resettled in countries of their own choosing. Stone also tracks the efforts of British, American, Canadian, and Russian liberators as they contended with survivors’ immediate needs, then grappled with longer-term issues that shaped the postwar world and ushered in the first chill of the Cold War years ahead.
Japanese Americans in World War II
Author: Roger Daniels
As issues of national security have recently led many to question the scope and extent of our civil liberties, there is a rekindled interest in the internment of Japanese Americans during the Second World War. This brief guide uncovers the history of that tragic part of our past. "Prisoners Without Trial is part of the celebrated Hill and Wang Critical Issues Series, which offers several concise and affordable works on pivotal topics in American history, society, and politics.
American Revolution to the War on Terrorism
Author: Louis Fisher
Although the use of military tribunals can be necessary and even effective in times of war, Louis Fisher contends that these courts present a grave danger to open government and the separation of powers. Citing the constitutional provision vesting Congress with the authority to create tribunals, Fisher addresses the threats posed by the dramatic expansion of presidential power in time of war - and the meek efforts of Congress and the judiciary to curb it. "Military Tribunals and Presidential Power" is the only book to offer detailed and comprehensive coverage of these extra-legal courts, taking in the sweep of American history from colonial times to today's headlines. Focusing on those periods when the Constitution and civil liberties have been most severely tested by threats to national security, Fisher critiques tribunals called during the presidencies of Washington, Madison, Jackson, Lincoln, Andrew Johnson, Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and Truman. He also examines other presidential actions that present military justifications to augment political power, such as suspending the writ of habeas corpus, invoking martial law, and using courts-martial to try U.S. citizens. Fisher also analyzes how the Bush administration relied heavily on precedents set in World War II - notably the Supreme Court's opinion regarding Nazi saboteurs, Ex parte Quirin, a case shown in recent times to have been a rush to judgment. He scrutinizes the much-publicized cases of John Walker Lindh, Yaser Esam Hamdi, Jose Padilla, Zacarias Moussaoui, and the Guantanamo detainees to reveal how the executive branch has gone far beyond the bounds of even Quirin, and he suggests that it is short-sighted to believe that what was only tolerable half a century ago should be accepted as a given today. Fisher's book cuts to the bone of current controversies and sounds an alarm for maintaining the checks and balances we value as a nation.
From Mauthausen to Cairo, the Relentless Pursuit of SS Doctor Aribert Heim
Author: Nicholas Kulish,Souad Mekhennet
From the New York Times reporters who first uncovered S.S. officer Aribert Heim’s secret life in Egypt comes the never-before-told story of the most hunted Nazi war criminal in the world. Dr. Aribert Heim worked at the Mauthausen concentration camp for only a few months in 1941 but left a devastating mark. According to the testimony of survivors, Heim euthanized patients with injections of gasoline into their hearts. He performed surgeries on otherwise healthy people. Some recalled prisoners' skulls set out on his desk to display perfect sets of teeth. Yet in the chaos of the postwar period, Heim was able to slip away from his dark past and establish himself as a reputable doctor and family man in the resort town of Baden-Baden. His story might have ended there, but for certain rare Germans who were unwilling to let Nazi war criminals go unpunished, among them a police investigator named Alfred Aedtner. After Heim fled on a tip that he was about to be arrested, Aedtner turned finding him into an overriding obsession. His quest took him across Europe and across decades, and into a close alliance with legendary Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal. The hunt for Heim became a powerful symbol of Germany's evolving attitude toward the sins of its past, which finally crested in a desire to see justice done at almost any cost. As late as 2009, the mystery of Heim’s disappearance remained unsolved. Now, in The Eternal Nazi, Nicholas Kulish and Souad Mekhennet reveal for the first time how Aribert Heim evaded capture--living in a working-class neighborhood of Cairo, praying in Arabic, beloved by an adopted Muslim family--while inspiring a manhunt that outlived him by many years. It is a brilliant feat of historical detection that illuminates a nation’s dramatic reckoning with the crimes of the Holocaust.