Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Autonomy versus Responsibility: A critique of Nuremberg Essay examples

Autonomy versus Responsibility: A critique of Nuremberg "This case is unusual in that the defendants are charged with crimes committed in the name of the law†¦." ( United States 31) So began Brigadier General Taylor in his opening statement against a selection of German jurists after the Second World War. This trial, United States of America against Josef Altstoetter et al., commonly referred to as the "Justice Case" because all of the defendants were somehow attached to the Nazi judicial system, was unusual, for as Taylor continued: These men, together with their deceased or fugitive colleagues, were the embodiment of justice in the Third Reich. Most of the defendants have served, at various times, as judges, as state prosecutors, and as officials and as officials in the Reich Ministry of Justice. All but one are professional jurists; they are all well accustomed to courts and courtrooms., though their present role may be new to them. But a court is far more than a courtroom; it is a process and a spirit. It is a house of law. This the defendants know, or must have known in times past. I doubt that they ever forgot it. Indeed the root of the accusation here is that those men, leaders of the German judicial consciously and deliberately surpressed the lawengaged in a brutish tyranny disguised as justice, and conveted the German judicial system to an engine of despotism, conquest, pillage and slaughter. The methods by which these crimes were committed may be novel in some respects, but the crimes themselves are not. They are as old as mankind, and their names are murder, torture, plunder and others equally familiar. The victims of these crimes are countless, and they include nationals of practically eve... ... is analyzed: that judges are responsible for the laws they enforce, and therefore must act with complete autonomy while they sit on the bench, recognizing not only written law, but also the unwritten moral law of man. Secondly, no nation is autonomous, they are all bound to accept responsibility before mankind as a whole. Finally, even the law itself is responsible to a higher, moral law that is universal. With this one case, America forever stepped away from the philosophical tenets of autonomous isolationism. Works Cited: - Bosh, William J. Judgment on Nuremberg. Chapel Hill NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1970 - United States. Nuernberg Military Tribunals. Trial of War Criminals Before the Nuerenberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10 Nuerenberg October 1946-April 1949 Volume III. Washington: GPO, 1951

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