Seventy years since Nuremburg

starman

Ad Honorem
Jan 2014
3,834
Connecticut
#61
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The problem was that with 60 millions dead , millions of civilians in horror letting the leadership alive would be seen as unnatural justice .

It was pretty good not taking out revenge on the German population at large or Germany as a political entity .they would have deserved more pain than what they got
The higher leadership, which was most culpable, was mostly already dead. And basically Germany had already been penalized massively, with the country in ruins, millions of dead and countless civilians abused or raped.
 

arkteia

Ad Honorem
Nov 2012
4,455
Seattle
#62
IIRC, Jackson was sympathetic to Speer and didn't give him a particularly hard time during cross examination.

Keitel had very few defences except to say that he was very busy and didn't see necessarily review all of the orders brought to him to sign, didn't have much of a say in drafting them and couldn't refuse or modify them anyway.

Jodl, on the other hand, said that there was very little that he signed that wasn't normal conduct during wartime. I don't think they were able to pin anything specific on him but his proximity to high command probably condemned him from the start.

On the other hand, people like Kesselring, Guderian, Manstein et al were not executed (they were not on trial at Nuremberg), and they arguably bore as much responsibility as Jodl - if he was guilty, they probably were too.
That was the time of the race for the nuclear bomb. Looking for German physicists still in Germany who were working at it, looking for enriched uranium which Germans took out of Belgian Congo and hid in several places in the country.

Speer, in his role of the Reich minister of armaments and war production, knew everything. And he very gladly cooperated with the US side. He was very important.

I read that the Soviet side wanted death penalty for him and there was a lot of "trading horses".

Likewise, Erich Raeder, before the Nuremberg, in Moscow captivity, was helping the Soviets modernize their old fleet. He got life sentence (and was surprised as he expected death).

Donitz knew a lot about the technical side of Hitler's war machine and his knowledge was used by the US.

It seems to me that Jodl as the chief of staff, a strategist, was not necessary as the war was won. Although he probably deserved death less than Speer.
 

arkteia

Ad Honorem
Nov 2012
4,455
Seattle
#63
Personally, I see no justice in Nuremberg. It was staged, it was planned. For example, why the need to put Hjalmar Schacht on the defendants' bench, so to say? He was not of any importance at that time, in fact, he was just liberated from Dachau. That role was originally planned for Gustav Krupp, but he had dementia and would present a pale figure at Nuremberg. So Schacht was included into the defendant group.

Why did they need Rudolf Hess as part of the process? Hess was truly sick, probably manic, but Hitler, Goebbels and Himmler were dead, and Bormann (presumably) escaped (dead, too, as we know now). So except for Goering there was no one to represent the "party", hence Hess.

So it looks haphazard and staged to me. The verdict (who was executed) is also very questionable.

However, the process played one very important role. By showing the movie about atrocities, by saying these words, "crimes against humanity", by posting proceedings of the trials, the organizers managed to change something in the minds of average Germans. Who, probably for the first time, felt ashamed.

That shame and anger were very deep. (When Schacht, Fritzsche and von Papen were acquitted, they could not leave Nuremberg prison that night - the crowd of Germans who stood outside was angry, almost livid. So they stayed in the same building for a few more days.)

And that feeling played a tremendous role in the upbringing of the young generation. Who grew up with intense dislike of the Germany of their parents. And this is the main positive outcome of the Nuremberg process. Many Germans today identify themselves as "pacifists". It does not sound so bad.
 
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rvsakhadeo

Ad Honorem
Sep 2012
8,846
India
#64
Personally, I see no justice in Nuremberg. It was staged, it was planned. For example, why the need to put Hjalmar Schacht on the defendants' bench, so to say? He was not of any importance at that time, in fact, he was just liberated from Dachau. That role was originally planned for Gustav Krupp, but he had dementia and would present a pale figure at Nuremberg. So Schacht was included into the defendant group.

Why did they need Rudolf Hess as part of the process? Hess was truly sick, probably manic, but Hitler, Goebbels and Himmler were dead, and Bormann (presumably) escaped (dead, too, as we know now). So except for Goering there was no one to represent the "party", hence Hess.

So it looks haphazard and staged to me. The verdict (who was executed) is also very questionable.

However, the process played one very important role. By showing the movie about atrocities, by saying these words, "crimes against humanity", by posting proceedings of the trials, the organizers managed to change something in the minds of average Germans. Who, probably for the first time, felt ashamed.

That shame and anger were very deep. (When Schacht, Fritzsche and von Papen were acquitted, they could not leave Nuremberg prison that night - the crowd of Germans who stood outside was angry, almost livid. So they stayed in the same building for a few more days.)

And that feeling played a tremendous role in the upbringing of the young generation. Who grew up with intense dislike of the Germany of their parents. And this is the main positive outcome of the Nuremberg process. Many Germans today identify themselves as "pacifists". It does not sound so bad.
Dear Friend !
A nice summing up. Thanks, regards---rvsakhadeo
 

starman

Ad Honorem
Jan 2014
3,834
Connecticut
#66
Personally, I see no justice in Nuremberg. It was staged, it was planned. For example, why the need to put Hjalmar Schacht on the defendants' bench, so to say? He was not of any importance at that time, in fact, he was just liberated from Dachau. That role was originally planned for Gustav Krupp, but he had dementia and would present a pale figure at Nuremberg. So Schacht was included into the defendant group.

Why did they need Rudolf Hess as part of the process? Hess was truly sick, probably manic, but Hitler, Goebbels and Himmler were dead, and Bormann (presumably) escaped (dead, too, as we know now). So except for Goering there was no one to represent the "party", hence Hess.
From what I've read, Hess was just faking it, but escaped the death penalty because it would make the judges look "ice cold" if they sentenced a person "unable to defend himself" to death.
The British originally opposed arraigning Doenitz and Raeder as defendants. They felt the kriegsmarine had fought "a pretty clean war."
While others deserved to be tried, some of the sentences were too harsh. Streicher for example had nothing to do with the mass liquidation. It was claimed that his anti-jewish writings had produced the atmosphere responsible for it but that's bunk. Himmler, Heydrich and others didn't act on the basis of his writings and didn't need them.
Likewise Jodl should've been acquited and a few of the others given some penalty other than death. Like Streicher, Rosenberg was of little real importance or consequence and Seyss-Inquart had a valid defense for what happened in Holland under his tenure there.
 

arkteia

Ad Honorem
Nov 2012
4,455
Seattle
#67
From what I've read, Hess was just faking it, but escaped the death penalty because it would make the judges look "ice cold" if they sentenced a person "unable to defend himself" to death.
The British originally opposed arraigning Doenitz and Raeder as defendants. They felt the kriegsmarine had fought "a pretty clean war."
While others deserved to be tried, some of the sentences were too harsh. Streicher for example had nothing to do with the mass liquidation. It was claimed that his anti-jewish writings had produced the atmosphere responsible for it but that's bunk. Himmler, Heydrich and others didn't act on the basis of his writings and didn't need them.
Likewise Jodl should've been acquited and a few of the others given some penalty other than death. Like Streicher, Rosenberg was of little real importance or consequence and Seyss-Inquart had a valid defense for what happened in Holland under his tenure there.
I believe that Hess was really ill. I don't know what exactly he had, one has to look at his family history to sort things out, but several suicide attempts, depression and final suicide indicate something to me.

Streicher and Rosenberg were of zero importance. Streicher was pretty dumb and blindly followed Goering during the process. Rosenberg was not a star, neither was Ribbentrop. All were expendable. Of Seyss-Inquart I know less but it seems that he was super intellectual but not charming at all. He could be accused of the same thing as von Schirach - deportation of the Jews - but Schirach avoided death by siding with Speer early on and deftly playing the role of a repenting Nazi - that group was important because the whole process was staged, it was all political.

Of the "unrepentant Nazis", Goering commands certain respect. He organized own defense well and he had the guts to leave the world at own terms.

In general, for six years Germany was keeping Europe in mortal fear. Whatever the victors did was justified. You also have to remember that own "denazification processes" that followed Nuremberg were occasionally more harsh.
 
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Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
31,602
T'Republic of Yorkshire
#68
von Schirach escaped execution - but did any other Gauleiter? As far s I'm aware, the rest were all convicted and executed in one trial or another.
 

Corvidius

Ad Honorem
Jul 2017
2,381
Crows nest
#69
According to this list only 13 Gauleiters out of a total of 94 were executed. The rest either dying before the end of the war, either in action or by suicide, or by suicide after the war and before capture or trial, with most escaping with their lives, and some, like Leon Degrelle, never being caught and living to old age. Many of the Gauleiters were essentially non entities in charge of some backwater German Gau and were not of any great interest. The "names" generally got what was coming to them.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Gauleiters
 
Likes: arkteia
Dec 2018
48
Chicago
#70
I don't think the Nuremburg trials were fair. The defendants weren't allowed to use respondent superior as a defense, which is unreasonable, nor, with the exception you cited, could they point to allied actions as a defense of their own (I don't recall offhand the legal term for that). There's no way they could've gotten a really fair trial at the time and they didn't.
So in other words they got the exact same level of fairness they gave their victims. Boo ******* boo.
 

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