Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Nuremberg Tribunal (1945-1946) did indeed convict the Germans for the crime of Katyn

An exchange with Art Butz about my article in French “Katyn à Nuremberg

After quoting my 1990 article:

"It has sometimes been remarked, in defence of that Tribunal, that in its final judgment the name Katyn does not appear. That is quite so. But the judgment is, in numerous passages, content to recall the German crimes in their generality. For exemple, only three concentration camps are named: Flossenbürg, Treblinka and Auschwitz",

A. Butz goes on to say:

I remarked in Hoax that the failure to deliver a verdict on "the Katyn issue was a disgrace even independent of the facts concerning the atrocity." The Americans and British and the Poles knew very well that the Soviets had committed the crime. Churchill and Roosevelt took specific steps to suppress the fact (v. Eugene Davidson, The Trial of the Germans, Collier Books, NY, 1972, pp. 71-74).
I don't think the failure to mention Katyn was an example of a general failure to be specific in the judgment. Davidson says "many people in the courtroom" knew the Soviets did it. I think it was a specific dodge, because Göring and his lawyer Stahmer had done a good job in court, despite all the handicaps.

Art
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My response was:

It was a disgrace, indeed.
Here I was answering the argument of those who dare to say: "Katyn is not mentioned in the verdict; therefore the Tribunal finally did not consider the Germans as guilty."
My answer to those people is: "The absence of the word Katyn does not mean more than the absence of the words Dachau, Mauthausen or Majdanek."
The Germans were considered as guilty at the beginning of the trial, during the trial and at the end of the trial, including the verdict.
At the beginning, thanks to article 21 their guilt was automatic and went without even saying.
During the trial, article 21 was specifically used to remind the defense that the German guilt in the matter was anyway automatic.
At the end, by not mentioning Katyn, the judges implied that nothing had finally changed of what had appeared at the beginning and during the trial. They did not commit any "failure". From beginning to end, they behaved like remarkable bastards.
Best wishes. RF
December 19, 2010