The War Crimes Trials: Justice Half-Served
DOI link for The War Crimes Trials: Justice Half-Served
The War Crimes Trials: Justice Half-Served book
During the war, a decision was made not to pursue war criminals until after an Allied victory for fear of provoking reprisals against prisoners of war (POWs). Instead, officials were secretly to gather evidence of war crimes for use after the war. Evidence of the mistreatment of American soldiers was introduced at two concentration camp trials but did not play a major part in the prosecution of the Nazis in either one. In the trial of Germans responsible for the Flossenburg camp, for example, evidence was presented that English and American POWs were placed in dark, isolated cells. As early as July 1945, Canadian and American war crimes investigators were working together to identify nationals who were victims at Buchenwald. As in the Buchenwald trial, evidence of crimes against Americans was not needed to convict the perpetrators of the Mauthausen atrocities. Nevertheless, those crimes should have been part of the record.