Image result for william henry chamberlain

In this article, Mr Wear and his team gives a direct copy from US journalist and opponent of all totalitarian systems, especially Stalin’s USSR:

William Henry Chamberlain.

Yet again, we have an excellent example of cherry picking of a source; picking out the bits that illustrate your point, whilst leaving out the parts that don’t. Indeed missing out the parts you definitely do not want your reader to see!

The book, “America’s Second Crusade” can be found easily on line. A copy can be found here:

http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/chamberlin-americas-second-crusade

So let’s see what Mr Chamberlain wrote and what Mr Wear and his team left out.

“Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson, American prosecutor in the Nürnberg trial, ex-Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson, and others hailed the war crimes trials as a new and higher development in international law. It seems improbable that this will be the verdict of impartial history. For both the underlying conception of the trials (that victors are qualified to be impartial judges of vanquished) and many of the methods employed in conducting prosecutions and extracting confessions run counter to all established principles of western justice and international law…”

The Nuremberg Trials were no panacea. They had their problems. They did however lay the foundations for out own post war international laws. That the victors passed judgement does not imply that the courts were biased. Nor, as Mr Chamberlain naively believed, was there any evidence of physical torture as he believed occurred at the Malmedy trials. What IS interesting is the part left out by Wears war after the ellipses.

“No reasonable person will deny that some of the defendants in
these trials were guilty of horrible crimes and that comparatively
few are entitled to sympathy on the basis of their personalities and
records.”

Are these the crimes that Mr Wear doesn’t believe actually happened?

Mr Chamberlain seems to be under no doubt. He makes it quite clear that the Holocaust took place:

“The exception is the savage, maniacal extermination of several million
European Jews.”

p 323.

So let us look at the objections that Mr Chamberlain had of the Nuremberg Trials.

“There was no pretense of enforcing responsibility before the law. Only Germans were punished, in many cases for actions which were also committed by soldiers and citizens of one or all of the victorious powers. But one of the clearest distinctions between a true court of law and a lynching mob is that the court judges all without discrimination.”

The Nuremberg Trials were not put in place to prosecute possible Allied war crimes. They were put in place to prosecute German war crimes. As to the courts themselves…the trials lasted months and months; a show trial would not have lasted that long. At the main trial half the defendants were hanged, the others apart from one, were out of jail by the 1950s. Moreover, three of the defendants were acquitted. Lynch mob mentality? No.

“The very important principle that judges and juries should have no personal interest or prejudice in the cases with which they are concerned was not and could not be upheld in trials of defeated enemies by their conquerors.”

There was no jury. The Judges acted in the main with impartiality. The one exception is possibly the Katyn massacre, which the Soviets tried to pin on the Germans. This notion was never accepted by the 3 non Soviet judges and no German was actually found guilty at the Nuremberg Trials for the mass murder of Polish officers at Katyn.

“This defect of the trials was aggravated because a considerable number of American citizens of recent origin, political or racial refugees from Nazi Germany, took part in the investigations and police actions which accompanied the prosecutions. The desire of some of these individuals for vengeance was human and understandable. But this desire should not have been satisfied through American courts”

In other words…the Jews. The theme of the “Avenging Jew” was a common one among some post war Germans and many stories of torture and brutality made it into US newspapers. For a more detailed understanding of the ever present underlying strands of antisemitism in post war Germany AND the US, see Steven Remy’s book on the Malmedy Massacre trials.

“The evidence on which some of the verdicts were based was tainted by the use of brutality and chicanery in extorting confessions.”

Not at the main Nuremberg Trial. Accusations of torture were made at and shortly after  the Malmedy Massacre trial at Dachau. Chamberlain refers to this trial in his book. Accusations of physical torture were proven false by post trial investigations.

“The trials set a dangerous precedent in violation of the well-known principles of national and international law. One of these is that there should be no ex post facto punishment. The other is that military officials and civilian officials should not be held responsible for carrying out orders received from high authorities. Under this last precedent, every military and naval officer who takes part in working out war plans could be indicted and executed as a “promoter of aggressive wars,” if his country should be defeated.”

The Nazis broke the Laws of warfare in place at the time. The main issue was that of responsibility. The notion of “I was simply following orders” no longer became an excuse after Nuremberg.

“The proscription of the vanquished by the victors is unpleasantly reminiscent of the practices of 20 centuries ago, when captured rulers were strangled after being led in Roman triumphs. The war-crimes trials were hailed and justified as war deterrents. But it seems far more probable that the only effect will be to turn future wars into bitter-end struggles of mutual extermination. There has never been a war in history in which the victors did not consider the vanquished “guilty.””

Most of the Nuremberg Trials’ defendants were not hanged. Many received prison sentences. Most were released by the 1950s. Many went on to lead comfortable lives in positions of importance in West Germany.

“One of the counts in the Nürnberg indictment was the planning and waging of wars of aggression. It is now a matter of public historical record, and it was a fact well known to the Nürnberg prosecutors and judges, that the Soviet Union was an active partner in Hitler’s scheme for attacking and partitioning Poland, to say nothing of its acts of aggression against the Baltic states and Finland. So, if the punishment of aggressive war was the purpose of the trials, the place of the Soviet representatives was in the dock with the accused, not on the bench with the judges. In view of the different treatment meted out to Nazi aggression and to Soviet aggression, the assumption seems justified that the Germans were punished not because they waged aggressive war, but because they waged it unsuccessfully.”

Indeed…Chamberlain does have a point. This was an issue that the Soviets at the trials were quite eager to downplay. It still does not absolve the Nazis of guilt though. “Tu Quoque” was not a viable defense strategy. Realistically of course, there was no way the Soviets would have been placed in the dock.

…and finally from Mr Wear himself,

“William Henry Chamberlain was an outstanding researcher and writer. I highly recommend his book “America’s Second Crusade” to anyone interested in World War II history.”

…just don’t look at his statement about the Holocaust!

How many millions did Chamberlain mention, Mr Wear?

 

Advertisements