|Racial policy ¬∑ Nuremberg Laws ¬∑ Nazi eugenics ¬∑ Action T4|
|Nazi concentration camps ¬∑
Nazi extermination camps ¬∑
Auschwitz-Birkenau ¬∑ BeŇāŇľec extermination camp ¬∑ Bergen-Belsen ¬∑ Bogdanovka ¬∑ Buchenwald ¬∑ CheŇāmno ¬∑ Dachau ¬∑ Gross-Rosen ¬∑ Herzogenbusch ¬∑ Janowska ¬∑ Jasenovac ¬∑ Kaiserwald ¬∑ Majdanek concentration camp ¬∑ Maly Trostenets ¬∑ Mauthausen-Gusen ¬∑ Neuengamme ¬∑ Ravensbr√ľck ¬∑ Sachsenhausen ¬∑ SajmiŇ°te ¬∑ Salaspils ¬∑ Sobib√≥r ¬∑ Stutthof ¬∑ Theresienstadt ¬∑ Treblinka ¬∑ Uckermark ¬∑ Warsaw ¬∑
Nazi Germany: Adolf Hitler ¬∑ Heinrich Himmler ¬∑ Ernst Kaltenbrunner ¬∑ Theodor Eicke ¬∑ Reinhard Heydrich ¬∑ Adolf Eichmann ¬∑ Rudolf H√∂ss ¬∑ Nazi Party ¬∑ Schutzstaffel (SS) ¬∑ Gestapo ¬∑ Sturmabteilung (SA)
Aftermath: Nuremberg Trials ¬∑ Denazification ¬∑ Reparations Agreement
|Survivors ¬∑ Victims ¬∑ Rescuers|
|The Destruction of the European Jews Functionalism versus intentionalism|
Coordinates: The Nuremberg Trials were a series of military tribunals, held by the main victorious Allied forces of World War II, most notable for the prosecution of prominent members of the political, military, and economic leadership of the defeated Nazi Germany. The trials were held in the city of Nuremberg, Bavaria, Germany, from 1945 to 1946, at the Palace of Justice. The first and best known of these trials was the Trial of the Major War Criminals before the International Military Tribunal (IMT), which tried 22 of the most important captured leaders of Nazi Germany. It was held from November 21, 1945 to October 1, 1946. The second set of trials of lesser war criminals was conducted under Control Council Law No. 10 at the US Nuremberg Military Tribunals (NMT); among them included the Doctors' Trial and the Judges' Trial. This article primarily deals with the IMT; see the Subsequent Nuremberg Trials for details on those trials.
British War Cabinet documents, released on 2 January, 2006, have shown that as early as December 1944, the Cabinet had discussed their policy for the punishment of the leading Nazis if captured. British Prime Minister Winston Churchill had then advocated a policy of summary execution in some circumstances with the use of an Act of Attainder to circumvent legal obstacles, and was only dissuaded from this by talks with US leaders later in the war. In late 1943, during the Tripartite Dinner Meeting at the Tehran Conference, the Soviet leader, Joseph Stalin, proposed executing 50,000‚Äď100,000 German staff officers. US President Franklin D. Roosevelt, joked that perhaps 49,000 would do. Churchill denounced the idea of "the cold blooded execution of soldiers who fought for their country." However, he also stated that war criminals must pay for their crimes and that in accordance with the Moscow Document which he himself had written, they should be tried at the places where the crimes were committed. Churchill was vigorously opposed to executions "for political purposes." According to the minutes of a Roosevelt-Stalin meeting during the Yalta Conference, in February 4, 1945, at the Livadia Palace, President Roosevelt "said that he had been very much struck by the extent of German destruction in the Crimea and therefore he was more bloodthirsty in regard to the Germans than he had been a year ago, and he hoped that Marshal Stalin would again propose a toast to the execution of 50,000 officers of the German Army."
US Treasury Secretary, Henry Morgenthau, Jr., suggested a plan for the total denazification of Germany; this was known as the Morgenthau Plan. The plan advocated the forced de-industrialisation of Germany. Roosevelt initially supported this plan, and managed to convince Churchill to support it in a less drastic form. Later, details were leaked to the public, generating widespread protest. Roosevelt, seeing strong public disapproval, abandoned the plan, but did not proceed to adopt support for another position on the matter. The demise of the Morgenthau Plan created the need for an alternative method of dealing with the Nazi leadership. The plan for the "Trial of European War Criminals" was drafted by Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson and the War Department. Roosevelt died in April 1945. The new president, Harry S. Truman, gave strong approval for a judicial process. After a series of negotiations between the US, Britain, the Soviet Union and France, details of the trial were worked out. The trials were set to commence on 20 November, 1945, in the Bavarian city of Nuremberg.
On January 14, 1942, representatives from the nine occupied countries met in London to draft the Inter-Allied Resolution on German War Crimes. At the meetings in Tehran (1943), Yalta (1945) and Potsdam (1945), the three major wartime powers, the United States, the Soviet Union and the United Kingdom, agreed on the format of punishment for those responsible for war crimes during World War II. France was also awarded a place on the tribunal.
The legal basis for the trial was established by the London Charter, issued on August 8, 1945, which restricted the trial to "punishment of the major war criminals of the European Axis countries." Some 200 German war crimes defendants were tried at Nuremberg, and 1,600 others were tried under the traditional channels of military justice. The legal basis for the jurisdiction of the court was that defined by the Instrument of Surrender of Germany, political authority for Germany had been transferred to the Allied Control Council, which having sovereign power over Germany could choose to punish violations of international law and the laws of war. Because the court was limited to violations of the laws of war, it did not have jurisdiction over crimes that took place before the outbreak of war on September 3, 1939.
The war crimes tribunal tried and punished personnel only from Axis countries. Accusations arose claiming victor's justice, since no war crimes by the Allies were heard. It is, however, usual that the armed forces of a civilised country issue their forces with detailed guidance on what is and is not permitted under their military code. These are drafted to include any international treaty obligations and the customary laws of war. For example, at the trial of Otto Skorzeny, his defence was in part based on the Field Manual published by the War Department of the United States Army, on 1 October, 1940, and the American Soldiers' Handbook. If a member of the armed forces breaks their own military code, they can expect to face a court martial. When members of the Allied armed forces broke their military codes, they could be and were tried, as, for example, at the Biscari Massacre trials.
However, General Chuck Yeager writes in his autobiography that some air corps missions were probably war crimes, (specifically, the 'shoot anything that moves' missions in the German countryside) but he, and other pilots, went on the missions in order to avoid court martial for disobeying orders. He also said he hoped the Allies won the war, otherwise they might be tried for war crimes.
The unconditional surrender of Japanese and German armed forces was unusual and led directly to the formation of the international tribunals. Usually, international wars end conditionally and the treatment of suspected war criminals makes up part of the peace treaty. In most cases, those who are not prisoners of war are tried under their own judicial system if they are suspected of committing war crimes ‚Äď as happened to some Finns at the end of the concurrent Finnish-Soviet Continuation War. In restricting the international tribunal to trying suspected Axis war crimes, the Allies were acting within normal international law.
Leipzig, Munich and Luxemberg were briefly considered as the location for the trial. The Soviet Union had wanted the trials to take place in Berlin, as the capital city of the 'fascist conspirators', but Nuremberg was chosen as the site for the trials for specific reasons:
Each of the four countries provided one judge and an alternate, as well as the prosecutors.
Assisting Jackson was the lawyer Telford Taylor and a young US Army interpreter named Richard Sonnenfeldt. Assisting Shawcross were Major Sir David Maxwell-Fyfe and Sir John Wheeler-Bennett. Mervyn Griffith-Jones, later to become famous as the chief prosecutor in the Lady Chatterley's Lover obscenity trial, was also on Shawcross's team. Shawcross also recruited a young barrister, Anthony Marreco, who was the son of a friend of his, to help the British team with the heavy workload. Robert Falco was an experienced judge who had tried many in court in France.
Democrat James B. Donovan was assistant trial counsel.
The majority of defense attorneys were German lawyers.
The International Military Tribunal was opened on October 18, 1945, in the Palace of Justice in Nuremberg. The first session was presided over by the Soviet judge, Nikitchenko. The prosecution entered indictments against 24 major war criminals and six criminal organizations ‚Äď the leadership of the Nazi party, the Schutzstaffel (SS) and Sicherheitsdienst (SD), the Gestapo, the Sturmabteilung (SA) and the "General Staff and High Command," comprising several categories of senior military officers.
The indictments were for:
The 24 accused were, with respect to each charge, either indicted but acquitted (I), indicted and found guilty (G), or not charged (O), as listed below by defendant, charge, and eventual outcome:
|I||O||G||G||Death||Successor to Hess as Nazi Party Secretary. Sentenced to death in absentia. Remains found in Berlin in 1972 and dated to 1945.|
|I||G||G||O||10 years||Leader of the Kriegsmarine from 1943, succeeded Raeder. Initiator of the U-boat campaign. Became President of Germany following Hitler's death. In evidence presented at the trial of Karl D√∂nitz on his orders to the U-boat fleet to breach the London Rules, Admiral Chester Nimitz stated that unrestricted submarine warfare was carried on in the Pacific Ocean by the United States from the first day that nation entered the war. D√∂nitz was found guilty of breaching the 1936 Second London Naval Treaty, but his sentence was not assessed on the ground of his breaches of the international law of submarine warfare.|
|I||O||G||G||Death||Reich Law Leader 1933‚Äď1945 and Governor-General of the General Government in occupied Poland 1939‚Äď1945. Expressed repentance.|
|I||G||G||G||Death||Hitler's Minister of the Interior 1933‚Äď1943 and Reich Protector of Bohemia-Moravia 1943‚Äď1945. Authored the Nuremberg Race Laws.|
|I||I||I||O||Acquitted||Popular radio commentator; head of the news division of the Nazi Propaganda Ministry. Tried in place of Joseph Goebbels.|
|I||G||G||G||Life Imprisonment||Hitler's Minister of Economics; succeeded Schacht as head of the Reichsbank. Released due to ill health on 16 May 1957. Died 31 May 1960.|
||G||G||G||G||Death||Reichsmarschall, Commander of the Luftwaffe 1935‚Äď1945, Chief of the 4-Year Plan 1936‚Äď1945, and original head of the Gestapo before turning it over to the SS in April 1934. Originally Hitler's designated successor and the second highest ranking Nazi official. By 1942, with his power waning, G√∂ring fell out of favor and was replaced in the Nazi hierarchy by Himmler. Committed suicide the night before his execution.|
||G||G||I||I||Life Imprisonment||Hitler's Deputy F√ľhrer until he flew to Scotland in 1941 in attempt to broker peace with Great Britain. After trial, committed to Spandau Prison; died in 1987.|
||G||G||G||G||Death||Wehrmacht Generaloberst, Keitel's subordinate and Chief of the OKW's Operations Division 1938‚Äď1945. Subsequently exonerated by German court in 1953, though the exoneration was later overturned, largely as a result of pressure by American officials.|
||I||O||G||G||Death||Highest surviving SS-leader. Chief of RSHA 1943‚Äď45, the Nazi organ made up of the intelligence service, Secret State Police and Criminal Police. Also had overall command over the Einsatzgruppen and several concentration camps.|
||G||G||G||G||Death||Head of Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (OKW) 1938‚Äď1945.|
||I||I||I||----||Major Nazi industrialist. C.E.O of Krupp A.G 1912‚Äď45. Medically unfit for trial (died January 16, 1950). The prosecutors attempted to substitute his son Alfried (who ran Krupp for his father during most of the war) in the indictment, but the judges rejected this as being too close to trial. Alfried was tried in a separate Nuremberg trial for his use of slave labor, thus escaping the worst notoriety and possibly death.|
||I||I||I||I||----||Head of DAF, The German Labour Front. Suicide on 25 October 1945, before the trial began.|
Baron Konstantin von Neurath
|G||G||G||G||15 years||Minister of Foreign Affairs 1932‚Äď1938, succeeded by Ribbentrop. Later, Protector of Bohemia and Moravia 1939‚Äď43. Resigned in 1943 due to dispute with Hitler. Released (ill health) 6 November 1954 after having a heart attack. Died 14 August 1956.|
||I||I||O||O||Acquitted||Chancellor of Germany in 1932 and Vice-Chancellor under Hitler in 1933‚Äď1934. Ambassador to Austria 1934‚Äď38 and ambassador to Turkey 1939‚Äď1944. Although acquitted at Nuremberg, von Papen was reclassified as a war criminal in 1947 by a German de-Nazification court, and sentenced to eight years' hard labour. He was acquitted following appeal after serving two years.|
||G||G||G||O||Life Imprisonment||Commander In Chief of the Kriegsmarine from 1928 until his retirement in 1943, succeeded by D√∂nitz. Released (ill health) 26 September 1955. Died 6 November 1960.|
||G||G||G||G||Death||Ambassador-Plenipotentiary 1935‚Äď1936. Ambassador to the United Kingdom 1936‚Äď1938. Nazi Minister of Foreign Affairs 1938‚Äď1945,|
||G||G||G||G||Death||Racial theory ideologist. Later, Minister of the Eastern Occupied Territories 1941‚Äď1945.|
||I||I||G||G||Death||Gauleiter of Thuringia 1927‚Äď1945. Plenipotentiary of the Nazi slave labor program 1942‚Äď1945.|
||I||I||O||O||Acquitted||Prominent banker and economist. Pre-war president of the Reichsbank 1923‚Äď1930 & 1933‚Äď1938 and Economics Minister 1934‚Äď1937. Admitted to violating the Treaty of Versailles.|
||I||O||O||G||20 years||Head of the Hitlerjugend from 1933 to 1940, Gauleiter of Vienna 1940‚Äď1943. Expressed repentance.|
||I||G||G||G||Death||Instrumental in the Anschluss and briefly Austrian Chancellor 1938. Deputy to Frank in Poland 1939‚Äď1940. Later, Reich Commissioner of the occupied Netherlands 1940‚Äď1945. Expressed repentance.|
||I||I||G||G||20 Years||Hitler's favorite architect and close friend, and Minister of Armaments from 1942 until the end of the war. In this capacity, he was ultimately responsible for the use of slave laborers from the occupied territories in armaments production. Expressed repentance.|
||I||O||O||G||Death||Gauleiter of Franconia 1922‚Äď1940. Publisher of the weekly newspaper, Der St√ľrmer.|
Throughout the trials, specifically between January and July 1946, the defendants and a number of witnesses were interviewed by American psychiatrist Leon Goldensohn. His notes detailing the demeanor and personality of the defendants survive.
The death sentences were carried out 16 October 1946 by hanging using the standard drop method instead of long drop. The U.S. army denied claims that the drop length was too short which caused the condemned to die slowly from strangulation instead of quickly from a broken neck.
The executioner was John C. Woods. Although the rumor has long persisted that the bodies were taken to Dachau and burned there, they were actually incinerated in a crematorium in Munich, and the ashes scattered over the river Isar. The French judges suggested the use of a firing squad for the military condemned, as is standard for military courts-martial, but this was opposed by Biddle and the Soviet judges. These argued that the military officers had violated their military ethos and were not worthy of the firing squad, which was considered to be more dignified. The prisoners sentenced to incarceration were transferred to Spandau Prison in 1947.
Of the 12 defendants sentenced to death by hanging, two were not hanged: Hermann G√∂ring committed suicide the night before the execution and Martin Bormann was not present when convicted. The remaining 10 defendants sentenced to death were hanged.
The definition of what constitutes a war crime is described by the Nuremberg Principles, a set of guidelines document which was created as a result of the trial. The medical experiments conducted by German doctors and prosecuted in the so-called Doctors' Trial led to the creation of the Nuremberg Code to control future trials involving human subjects, a set of research ethics principles for human experimentation.
Of the organizations the following were found not to be criminal:
The creation of the IMT was followed by trials of lesser Nazi officials, trials of Nazi doctors, who performed horrifying experiments on people in prison camps. It served as the model for the International Military Tribunal for the Far East which tried Japanese officials for crimes against peace and against humanity. It also served as the model for the Eichmann trial and for present-day courts at The Hague, for trying crimes committed during the Balkan wars of the early 1990s, and at Arusha, for trying the people responsible for the genocide in Rwanda.
The Nuremberg trials had a great influence on the development of international criminal law. The Conclusions of the Nuremberg trials served as models for:
The International Law Commission, acting on the request of the United Nations General Assembly, produced in 1950 the report Principles of International Law Recognized in the Charter of the N√ľrnberg Tribunal and in the Judgement of the Tribunal (Yearbook of the International Law Commission, 1950, vol. II). See Nuremberg Principles.
The influence of the tribunal can also be seen in the proposals for a permanent international criminal court, and the drafting of international criminal codes, later prepared by the International Law Commission.
The Nuremberg trials initiated a movement for the prompt establishment of a permanent international criminal court, eventually leading over fifty years later to the adoption of the Statute of the International Criminal Court.
Critics of the Nuremberg trials argued that the charges against the defendants were only defined as "crimes" after they were committed and that therefore the trial was invalid as a form of "victors' justice". As Biddiss noted "...the Nuremberg Trial continues to haunt us... It is a question also of the weaknesses and strengths of the proceedings themselves. The undoubted flaws rightly continue to trouble the thoughtful."
Chief Justice of the United States Harlan Fiske Stone called the Nuremberg trials a fraud. "(Chief U.S. prosecutor) Jackson is away conducting his high-grade lynching party in Nuremberg," he wrote. "I don't mind what he does to the Nazis, but I hate to see the pretense that he is running a court and proceeding according to common law. This is a little too sanctimonious a fraud to meet my old-fashioned ideas."
Jackson, in a letter discussing the weaknesses of the trial, in October 1945 told U.S. President Harry S. Truman that the Allies themselves "have done or are doing some of the very things we are prosecuting the Germans for. The French are so violating the Geneva Convention in the treatment of prisoners of war that our command is taking back prisoners sent to them. We are prosecuting plunder and our Allies are practicing it. We say aggressive war is a crime and one of our allies asserts sovereignty over the Baltic States based on no title except conquest."
Associate Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas charged that the Allies were guilty of "substituting power for principle" at Nuremberg. "I thought at the time and still think that the Nuremberg trials were unprincipled," he wrote. "Law was created ex post facto to suit the passion and clamor of the time."
The validity of the court has been questioned for a variety of reasons:
Moreover, the Tribunal itself strongly disputed that the London Charter was ex post facto law, pointing to existing international agreements signed by Germany that made aggressive war and certain wartime actions unlawful, such as the Kellogg-Briand Pact, the Covenant of the League of Nations, and the Hague Conventions.
Additionally, many commentators felt the Nuremberg Trials represented a step forward in extending fairness to the vanquished by requiring that actual criminal misdeeds be proved before punishment could ensue; including some of the defendants and their legal team:
In his opening statements to the trial, after the indictments had been read and the defendants had enterered pleas of not guilty to the charges, Mr Justice Jackson explained some of the difficulties faced by the prosecution:
In justice to the nations and the men associated in this prosecution, I must remind you of certain difficulties which may leave their mark on this case. Never before in legal history has an effort been made to bring within the scope of a single litigation the developments of a decade, covering a whole continent, and involving a score of nations, countless individuals, and innumerable events. Despite the magnitude of the task, the world has demanded immediate action. This demand has had to be met, though perhaps at the cost of finished craftmanship. In my country, established courts, following familiar procedures, applying well-thumbed precedents, and dealing with the legal consequences of local and limited events, seldom commence a trial within a year of the event in litigation. Yet less than eight months ago to-day the courtroom in which you sit was an enemy fortress in the hands of German S.S. troops. Less than eight months ago nearly all our witnesses and documents were in enemy hands.
He also acknowledged that the trial would not be perfect, as well as asserting the legal precedent being set:
I should be the last to deny that the case may well suffer from incomplete researches, and quite likely will not be the example of professional work which any of the prosecuting nations would normally wish to sponsor. It is, however, a completely adequate case to the judgment we shall ask you to render, and its full development we shall be obliged to leave to historians... At the very outset, let us dispose of the contention that to put these men to trial is to do them an injustice, entitling them to some special consideration. These defendants may be hard pressed but they are not ill used... If these men are the first war leaders of a defeated nation to be prosecuted in the name of the law, they are also the first to be given the chance to plead for their lives in the name of the law.
One criticism that was made of the IMT was that some treaties were not binding on the Axis powers because they were not signatories. This was addressed in the judgment relating to war crimes and crimes against humanity, which contains an expansion of customary law: "the Convention Hague 1907 expressly stated that it was an attempt 'to revise the general laws and customs of war,' which it thus recognised to be then existing, but by 1939 these rules laid down in the Convention were recognised by all civilised nations, and were regarded as being declaratory of the laws and customs of war which are referred to in Article 6 (b) of the [London] Charter." The implication under international law is that if enough countries have signed up to a treaty, and that treaty has been in effect for a reasonable period of time, then it can be interpreted as binding on all nations, not just those who signed the original treaty. This is a highly controversial aspect of international law, one that is still actively debated in international legal journals.
There were two sets of Nuremberg Trials.
The first, and most well known, were the trials of the leaders of Nazi Germany. This was organized by the International Military Tribunal (IMT). The judges and prosecuters were from the four wartime allies, France, the USSR, the United Kingdom and the United States.
The second set of trials were the 12 follow up trials (German: nachfolgende Prozesse). These trial were of groups lower ranking Nazis, like doctors, and officials of the German Foreign Office. Although the follow up trials were held in the same court-room as the IMT trials, they were run by the Americans alone.
The original plan was for the IMT to hold several trials, and the allies to hold their own trials of local officials as well. Cooperation between the Soviet Union and the Western Allies quickly broke down. The IMT only held the one big trial. So the US held trials of the next most important Nazis themselves.
The International Military Tribunal was opened on October 18 1945, in the Supreme Court Building in Berlin. The first session was presided over by the Soviet judge, Nikitchenko. The prosecution brought charges against 24 major war criminals and six criminal organizations - the leadership of the Nazi Party , the Schutzstaffel (SS) and Sicherheitsdienst (SD), the Gestapo, the Sturmabteilung (SA) and the High Command of the German armed forces (OKW).
The indictments were for:
The 24 accused were:
"I" indicted "G" indicted and found guilty "O" Not Charged
| ||I||O||G||G||Death||Successor to Hess as Nazi Party Secretary. Sentenced to death in absentia. His body was found in 1972.|
|I||G||G||O||10 years||Leader of the Kriegsmarine, the Navy, from 1943. Started the U-boat campaign. Became President of Germany after Hitler's death. In evidence presented at the trial of Karl D√∂nitz on his orders to the U-boat fleet to breach the London Rules, Admiral Chester Nimitz stated that unrestricted submarine warfare was carried on in the Pacific Ocean by the United States from the first day that nation entered the war. D√∂nitz was found guilty of breaching the 1936 Second London Naval Treaty, but his sentence was not assessed on the ground of his breaches of the international law of submarine warfare.|
|I||O||G||G||Death||Reich Law Leader 1933-1945 and Governor-General of the General Government in occupied Poland 1939-1945. Expressed sorrow|
|I||G||G||G||Death||Hitler's Minister of the Interior 1933-1943 and Reich Protector of Bohemia-Moravia 1943-1945. One of the writers of the Nuremberg Race Laws.|
|I||I||I||O||Acquitted||Popular radio commentator, and head of the news division of the Nazi Propaganda Ministry. Tried in place of Joseph Goebbels|
| ||I||G||G||G||Life Imprisonment||Hitler's Minister of Economics. Succeeded Schacht as head of the Reichsbank. Released due to ill health on May 16 1957|
Reichsmarschall Hermann G√∂ring
|G||G||G||G||Death||Commander of the Luftwaffe 1935-1945, Chief of the 4-Year Plan 1936-1945, and several departments of the SS, Prime Minister of Prussia. Committed suicide the night before his execution.|
|G||G||I||I||Life Imprisonment||Hitler's deputy, flew to Scotland in 1941 to try to make peace with Great Britain. After trial he was sent to Spandau Prison; died there in 1987.|
Generaloberst Alfred Jodl
|G||G||G||G||Death||Wehrmacht. Keitel's deputy and Chief of the OKW's Operations Division 1938-1945. Later exonerated by German court in 1953.|
|I||O||G||G||Death||Highest surviving SS-leader. Chief of RSHA 1943-45, the central Nazi intelligence office. Also, commanded many of the Einsatzgruppen and several concentration camps.|
|G||G||G||G||Death||Head of Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (OKW) 1938-1945.|
Gustav Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach
|I||I||I||----||Major Nazi industrialist. C.E.O of Krupp A.G 1912-45. Medically unfit for trial. The prosecutors attempted to substitute his son Alfried (who ran Krupp for his father during most of the war) in the indictment, but the judges rejected this as being too close to trial. Alfried was tried in a separate Nuremberg trial for his use of slave labor, thus escaping the worst notoriety and possibly death.|
|I||I||I||I||----||Head of DAF, The German Labour Front. Suicide on October 25, 1945, before the trial began|
Baron Konstantin von Neurath
|G||G||G||G||15 years||Minister of Foreign Affairs 1932-1938, succeeded by von Ribbentrop. Protector of Bohemia and Moravia 1939-43. Resigned in 1943 after a dispute with Hitler. Released because of ill health on November 6, 1954|
|I||I||O||O||Acquitted||Chancellor of Germany in 1932 and Vice-Chancellor under Hitler in 1933-1934. Ambassador to Austria 1934-38 and ambassador to Turkey 1939-1944. Although acquitted at Nuremberg, von Papen was classed as a war criminal in 1947 by a German de-Nazification court, and sentenced to eight years' hard labour. He was acquitted following appeal after serving two years.|
|G||G||G||O||Life Imprisonment||Commander-in-Chief of the Kriegsmarine from 1928 until his retirement in 1943, succeeded by D√∂nitz. Released because of ill health on September 26, 1955|
|G||G||G||G||Death||Ambassador-Plenipotentiary 1935-1936. Ambassador to the United Kingdom 1936-1938. Minister of Foreign Affairs 1938-1945|
| ||G||G||G||G||Death||Racial theory ideologist. Later, Minister of the Eastern Occupied Territories 1941-1945.|
|I||I||G||G||Death||Gauleiter of Thuringia 1927-1945. Plenipotentiary of the Nazi slave labor program 1942-1945.|
Dr. Hjalmar Schacht
|I||I||O||O||Acquitted||Prominent banker and economist. President of the Reichsbank 1923-1930 & 1933-1938 and Economics Minister 1934-1937. Admitted breaking the Treaty of Versailles.|
Baldur von Schirach (standing)
|I||O||O||G||20 years||Head of the Hitlerjugend from 1933 to 1940, Gauleiter of Vienna 1940-1943. Expressed sorrow|
|I||G||G||G||Death||Helped the Anschlu√ü (joining Germany and Austria). Was briefly Austrian Chancellor 1938. Deputy to Frank in Poland 1939-1940. Later, Reich Commissioner of the occupied Netherlands 1940-1945. Expressed sorrow.|
| ||I||I||G||G||20 Years||Hitler's favourite architect and personal friend, and Minister of Armaments from 1942. As Minister of Armaments, he used slave labour from the occupied territories in armaments production. Expressed sorrow.|
| ||I||O||O||G||Death||Gauleiter of Franconia 1922-1945. Incited hatred and murder against the Jews through his weekly newspaper, Der St√ľrmer.|
"I" indicted "G" indicted and found guilty "O" Not Charged
The death sentences were carried out on 16 October 1946 by hanging using the inefficient American "standard" drop method instead of the long drop. The executioner was John C. Woods. The French judges suggested the use of a firing squad for the military condemned, as is standard for military courts-martial, but this was opposed by Biddle and the Soviet judges. They said that the military officers acted so badly they did not deserve to be treated as soldiers. The prisoners sentenced to jail were transferred to Spandau Prison in 1947.
The definition of what constitutes a war crime is described by the Nuremberg Principles, a document which was created as a result of the trial. The medical experiments conducted by German doctors and prosecuted in the so-called Doctors' Trial led to the creation of the Nuremberg Code to control future trials involving human subjects.
Four organisations were charged as being crimal. Only the SS was found guilty. These organisations were found not to be criminal:
|The Nuremberg Trials|
|Trial of the Major War Criminals before the International Military Tribunal|
|Trials before the U.S. Nuremberg Military Tribunals|