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Primary Sources: The Holocaust

The Nuremberg Trials 

The Nuremberg Trials held between 1945 and 1946, were a series of military tribunals that sought justice for the atrocities committed during World War II, particularly by high-ranking Nazi officials. Named after the city in Germany where they took place, the trials were a landmark in international law, establishing principles for prosecuting individuals for crimes against humanity, war crimes, and aggression.

The main trial, often referred to as the International Military Tribunal (IMT), focused on 24 major Nazi leaders, including Hermann Göring, Rudolf Hess, and Joachim von Ribbentrop. They were charged with crimes ranging from conspiracy to commit crimes against peace to the murder of millions in concentration camps.

The Nuremberg Trials set essential precedents for holding individuals accountable for their actions, regardless of their official positions or the orders they received. They also highlighted the importance of documenting and preserving evidence of mass atrocities for future generations.

Ultimately, the trials resulted in several convictions, including 12 death sentences, three life imprisonments, four long-term imprisonments, and three acquittals. While controversial in some respects, the Nuremberg Trials represented a crucial step towards establishing accountability and justice in the wake of one of the darkest chapters in human history.

Online Sources: Nuremberg Trials - WWII 

Book Sources: Nuremberg Trials - WWII

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Nuremberg: Army Television-Release Version