Posts Tagged 'law'

DeNazifacation and the Judicial System

Iosef Jughashvili Stalin (left) and Georgi Dimitrov, a Bulgarian communist, converse.  Dimitrov won world reknowned fame for his vibrant defense of Communist ideals and of himself during the trial against him in Germany over the Reichstag Fire.

Iosef Jughashvili Stalin (left) and Georgi Dimitrov, a Bulgarian communist, converse. Dimitrov won world reknowned fame for his vibrant defense of Communist ideals and of himself during the trial against him in Germany over the Reichstag Fire.

Michael E. Tigar and John Mage write:

Gradually in the years after the “thaw” that followed on the death of Stalin, the rise of Khrushchev, and the end of the Korean War, the truth of the allegations could no longer be denied. It was established beyond question that Hitler’s loyal servants occupied key places from the top of the West German regime on down. West German Chancellor Adenauer’s chief of staff, Hans Globke, had played a central role in the drafting and enforcement of the infamous Nuremburg Laws and the extermination of the German Jews. Of the 160 top officers in the West German army in 1961 all but one had been a colonel or general in Hitler’s Wehrmacht. In West German university chairs in law there were professors who had written vicious articles on the “Jewish problem” in the years leading up to its “final solution.”…

The great bulk of German opposition to the Nazis had been from leftists, and it was in the government of the communist East German state—the German Democratic Republic—that it was easy to find those who had fought the fascists arms in hand, and those who truly had been opponents of the Nazis. A more promising alternative was to exculpate the Nazis—who after all had been staunch anticommunists—and in particular the Nazi legal system. A further, and more material, concern was the presence of substantial claims from Jewish victims of the Nazis, demanding restitution of property they had lost (of course always in accordance with legal process of some sort) in the first years after Hitler came to power.

Source

Tigar Michael E. and John Mage.  “The Reichstag Fire Trial 1933-2008: The Production of Law and History.”  Monthly Review 60, no. 10 (March 2009).  (Accessed June 23, 2009)


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