Article Title

The Nuremberg Roles of Justice Robert H. Jackson

Publication Title

Washington University Global Studies Law Review


Justice Jackson’s Nuremberg was over 15 months of full time involvement in an unprecedented, post-World War, two continent, five major world capital,2 wreckage-strewn, military occupied, twenty-plus nation, alliance-based, alliance fraying, four language, multi-million page, prisoner-inundated, debris- and body- and victim-surrounded, cold, hungry and unsafe, Nazi-fearing, Germany-fearing, World War III-fearing, fact finding, institution creating, law building, crime defining, criminal guilt proving, punishment imposing and historical record publishing human endeavor. Given all of that, to understand “Nuremberg”—Jackson’s Nuremberg roles and the 1945–46 proceedings before the International Military Tribunal (“IMT”)—really requires one to look at Nuremberg not merely as a sixty-year-old finished product, preserved in the London conference record, in forty-two volumes of trial transcripts, in ten volumes of trial briefs, documentary exhibits and interrogation transcripts, and in the IMT’s judgment, all of which sit on library shelves throughout the world and much of which is available in virtual form on the Internet. History should see and remember Nuremberg from the front end: as it unfolded, and as Justice Jackson unfolded it; as something that was far from easy or foregone; and as something that in many ways could have turned out very differently.