chapter  18
8 Pages

Justifiable Homicide

Presumption of innocence is a broad concept, requiring that jurors give defendants the benefit of the doubt until guilt is firmly proven. A guilty verdict means that there was a crime and the accused committed it. Jews were exterminated and Hitler ordered the gassing. However, not all murders and felonious manslaughters are inexcusable crimes. A Nazi court might find that genocide was pardonable for the Aryan greater good, and a Soviet jury might consider Great Terror executions acts of self-defense. Both examples illustrate the concept of justifiable homicide, a common line of defense employed by Red Holocaust deniers, skeptics and rationalizers.1