walterkaschner wrote:One may disagree with an particular outcome without condemning the entire process itself. And of all the practical alternatives exisiting at the time, I believe that all things considered the Nuremberg Trials were the best available to demonstrate to the Germans and to the world at large the iniquity of the Nazi regime, and the dangers that the potential evil that lies shallow under our thin veneer of civilization can be heir to.
Well, some on the forum argue that only scholarly legal condemnations are the only ones permissible of the IMT and related trials and that political considerations don't matter. But this is essentially a political
argument: to show the world (and especially the German people) how bad the Nazis were (and how good were the Allies).
Now, a layman can easily see legal flaws in the trials--the use of ex post facto law, no lawful jurisdiction, use of hearsay evidence, etc. But even to achieve the political outcome is a hollow mockery of justice. The trials were held by the Victors of the Vanquished and the standards of conduct were not applicable to themselves. An international tribunal could have been held by neutrals to adjudicate fairly the violations of existing international agreements by commanders without the proper authority of their sovereign governments or formal abrogation of those agreements. This is the only way that "war-crimes trials" could have been held with some semblance of humanitarian justice.
But the purpose of the trials was political--to discredit the Nazi leaders. "To show the world," as Mr. Kaschner has eloquently noted. (I wonder if witness will now call him a Nazi propagandist.)
Personally, I can find no redeeming virtues in the Nuremberg Trials, and for all their faults at least the neocons have no intention of allowing American soldiers to be hauled before foreign courts whenever somebody thinks their ox has been gored.
David Thompson wrote:Do the posters who think the death penalty was appropriate for Julius Streicher also feel that his example should be applied to any contemporary pornographers, producers of violent television shows, films and video games, or xenophobic talk-show hosts?
Excellent point. The Moral Majority and some radical-feminists would like to see Larry Flynt dead, and somebody tried just that. They would argue that Hustler
magazine causes violence against women and children and spreads immoral ideas.
Walter Kaschner wrote:although I think some penalty was in order I find the death sentence in his case appallingly inappropriate.
But in a society that values free-speech you cannot start banning what some
people don't like. What penalty was appropriate for Thoughtcrime? Saying "go kill the Niggers" is just not the same thing as killing the Niggers
(or, "the White man is the Devil," as the case may be).
Streicher was a minor Party official whose propaganda appealed to the lower classes. He was tolerated by Hitler because propaganda must be directed to a broad spectrum and not just to the highbrow in the universities. A simple message of "the Jew is our misfortune" brought in an element of support for the Party. The simpler the theme the better in order to move the masses. But let's not overstate the importance of Streicher. He was no Dr. Goebbels, and most Germans were too sophisticated for such crude caricatures. The smoking-gun for "incitement" to Genocide is chalutzim's picture of the German tossing the Jew off Terra Firma? Get real.
Streicher made a good symbol though, and that's why the Allies chose him for their show-trial. Lest somebody like witness chaff at this characterization I will remind you (again) that Mr. Kaschner above noted that the purpose of the trial was to "show the world" the badness of the Nazi regime. But putting Streicher on trial would be like Larry Flynt standing trial for actions of the Democratic Party. Indeed, Flynt is probably a much greater player in party-politics than Streicher ever was.
The Allies that condemned Streicher to death were guilty of some of the most vicious and vile Hate-propaganda ever directed against any people in two world wars, and much of it still goes on to this day. The purpose of this Hate-propaganda was to condition democratic peoples to risk their lives killing and maiming Germans. After the war some of these lies are just quietly forgotten. Others persist and the New World Order is essentially founded on them. At this point some Germans even hate themselves. An anti-Wehrmacht Ausstellung in the USA against our veterans would be unthinkable. As it should be. But let them have their say. Only liars need Thoughtcrimes laws.
Oh, but we
weren't Evil, so.