In 1945 and 1946 the Nuremberg Trials took place in Germany, in order to relieve the damages that the Nazis have done during World War Two and the Holocaust. Judges from all over the world came together to rule over twenty two court hearings and ruled twelve of the Nazis guilty. The Nazis were sentenced to death. The rulings made by the judges can be supported in many ways by Saint Thomas Aquinas and John Austin. Saint Thomas Aquinas’ decision is backed by the theory of Natural Law and John Austin utilized the Command Theory of Law. According to Study Guide # 1, “the theory of Natural Law is, among other things, an attempt to bridge the gap between law and morality”, therefore, the Natural Law is going to prescribe laws that morally …show more content…
For example, if I was trapped in a zombie shelter with three of my friends and we only had enough supplies to survive for three people, it would be wrong to kill anyone of us even if one of us was wounded and about to die. The Natural Law forbids killing anyone even for the sake of survival, thus it is a major infraction if the Nazis are killing innocent people because the government said so. That is how Aquinas’ Natural Law proves the Nazis guilty. Alike, John Austin’s Command Theory of Law also proves the Nazis guilty for the murder of many innocent lives. The Nazi law to kill can be backed by many of Austin’s ideas, but is ultimately shut down because it does not pass one point on the checklist. Austin was a legal positivist and always looked at two questions “what is the law?” and “what ought the law to be?”. In his mind he would answer those questions by breaking down the law. First, Austin would ask is the law a command, if the law was not a command one would not have to obey the law. Austin would identify what type of command the law could fall under, the command could have been a particular command or a general command. The command would fall under general commands because the command was passed down through a sovereign. Next, Austin would identify is there really a sovereign and who is the sovereign. It is evident that Nazi Germany holds the role as the sovereign in our situation. Finally, Austin would need to see sanctions taken
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The Nuremberg Trials were held in Nuremberg, Germany from the 20th of November 1945 to the 1st of October 1946, 24 of the Nazi leaders were tried for their crimes against humanity, however only 22 trials were officially carried out due to Robert Ley committing suicide and Gustav Krupp von Bohlen deemed unfit for trial before their hearing. It was considered to be controversial as all Nazi officials at one time claimed that they were simply following orders from a higher power and that they weren’t to blame for their crimes because they were acting in self defence. Hermann Göring also committed suicide the day before his scheduled execution. Also a few of Hitler’s accomplices committed suicide before they had a chance to be trialled. These adjustments to the expected outcome of the Nuremberg Trials caused controversy amongst everyone who knew of the Nazi’s treatment of others, especially Jews. There was also some bias towards the Nazi party from the people conducting the trial as they were mostly from Allied descent and had personal reasons to persecute Nazis simply because they were Nazis without fairly considering their crimes against humanity.
Natural law is a concept with a long history dating back to the Greco-Roman philosophers. Despite some variations among philosophers one point of agreement was understood as “that process in nature by which human beings, through the use of sound reason, were able to perceive what was morally right
Most people know of Hitler being the leader of the nazis and “leading” the war on Jews, but in documents it states that he justedx signed off on it because it was brought up by one of his second in command and one of his most trusted people, but before he could be put on trial Hitler ended his life in his bunker so that he couldn't be captured. So the Nuremberg trials consisted of Rudolf Hess, Joachim Freiherr, Dr. Wilhelm Frick, Heinrich Himmler and many more these names are just some of the biggest because they were all his most trusted comrades. All together they were charged with the genocide of Jews, gypsies, gays, and many more. They were also charged with crimes against peace by invading other countries and taking total control of them, they were also charged with crimes against humanity because of the gruesome and awful ways they treated people and how they killed people and they were also charged with conspiracy to commit such crimes all of these charges are major charges mainly resulting in the death penalty due to the nature of the crimes the only one that wasn't worth the death penalty was the conspiracy to commit because they had planned on what they were doing and hadn't even started it yet. Making this one of the many ways that helped them figure there death toll for the Jews. All of these men were killed because of their crimes and for the role they had in the mass
According to Justice Lawrence, author, the purpose of the Nuremberg Trials, later known as the Doctor’s Trial, was to “not only the punishment of those who were guilty but the establishment of the supremacy of international law over national law and proof of the actual facts” (Lawrence, p. 153) of the atrocious mass genocide known now as the Holocaust. This means that point of these trials were not only to punish the murderous doctors but also to show the world that international law is the highest form of power. A separate form of trials initially took place in Germany, however, it was a “farce” according to Lawrence. “The majority got off and such sentences as were inflicted were derisory and were soon remitted” (Lawrence, p. Yo27153). Due to the growing tension between the German court of law and other countries the Doctor’s Trial was then moved to Nuremberg, and the evidence was eventually over-turned to the United States who would eventually indict 23 doctors on a number of crimes
Natural law- the idea that principles of morals and rights are inherent in nature and not human made; such laws are discovered by reason but exist apart from humankind. Positive law-human made law.
12. Natural law is the set of principles that some believe can be reach by pure reason. They are laws that can be assumed simply from examining how our world is. Natural law gives Christians a set of believes and ideas to compare and contrast their own set of laws and values against. It also provides them with a perspective with which they can shape their morality beliefs
The trial attracted a lot of public recognition in Germany, but considered Fritz Bauer; who played a significant role as a Judge and prosecutor on the trails, was quoted to say that the trials in a macro-scale was a failure. Only 22 SS members were charged, with an estimate of 6,000 to 8,000 who were thought to have been involved in the administration and operation of the camp. Six officials received life sentences, and many others were given long sentences. However, several were given on average 3-7 years and it is documented that four were acquitted and released. It was the first time individuals responsible for the Nazi's methods of exterminating Jews and people of other minorities were brought before national courts in Germany. In my focus, I would also like to show emphasis on the 360 witnesses who were called to testify, of which 210 were survivors of the Holocaust and the Hitler
Are we naturally moral creatures? Do we always act towards the common good of others? I am positive that we do not, and in fact, as much as society wants to, we go against our morals and lead with our ‘feelings’. These feelings may feel right, but it doesn’t mean they will lead you in the right path to fulfil your ultimate end, true happiness. Hitler was a passionate man driven by feelings, but what he felt and did during the World War Two era was not for the sake of the common good, and was not morally right. In today’s society we often struggle between what is legally right and what is
On 8th August, 1945, shortly after the end of World War II in May of 1945, the Allied governments entered into a joint agreement establishing the International Military Tribunal for the purpose of trying those responsible for the war atrocities. Whereas some 5,000 Nazi’s were charged with war crimes, the Nuremberg trials were designed specifically to prosecute high ranking Nazi officials with whom the authority for the commission of heinous atrocities rested.
Natural law theorists believe that all law must be morally justified if it can be legitimised as law at all. Legal positivism means the simple contention that it is in no sense a necessary truth that laws reproduce or satisfy certain demands of morality, though in fact they have otherwise done so. (Hart, DATE)
The Nuremberg Trials were a critical point in the history of international law because it established the fact that humanity has the need of an international shield to shelter and protect. This event was responsible for contributing in the ongoing process of developing rules that are binding between states and nations also known as international laws. The judgment of the trials may be one of the most important events in the history of international law due to the fact that it assisted in establishing laws against war crimes. One of the biggest questions raised was whether causing a war was an international crime that would be punishable or not. Many believed there was no
As can be seen, The Nuremberg Trials had many impacts on the world and also the future. They had bought Nazi’s to justice and the trials had saved many lives. The Nuremberg Trials impact had launched World War II but in this process, they had eliminated many Nazi’s. The trials had lasted 218 days in all. Some of the prison sentences they had were turned into death sentences while some death sentences were turned into a death