The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials: A Personal Memoir

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In 1945, the Allied nations agreed on a judicial process, rather than summary execution, to determine the fate of the Nazis following the end of World War II. Held in Nuremberg, the ceremonial birthplace of the Nazi Party, the British, American, French, and Soviet leaders contributed both judges and prosecutors to the series of trials that would prosecute some of the most prominent politicians, military leaders and businessmen in Nazi Germany.

This is the definitive history of the Nuremberg crimes trials by one of the key participants, Telford Taylor, the distinguished lawyer who was a member of the American prosecution staff and eventually became chief counsel. In vivid detail, Taylor portrays the unfolding events as he “saw, heard, and otherwise sensed them at the time, and not as a detached historian working from the documents might picture them.”

Taylor describes personal vendettas among the Allied representatives and the negotiations that preceded the handing down of sentences. The revelations have not lost their power over the decades: The chamber is reduced to silence when an SS officer recounts impassively that his troops rounded up and killed 90,000 Jews, and panic overcomes the head of the German State Bank as it becomes clear that he knew his institution was receiving jewels and other valuables taken from the bodies of concentration camp inmates.

The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials has proven to be a defining piece of World War II literature, an engrossing and reflective eyewitness account of one of the most significant events of our century.

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About the Author:

Telford Taylor (1908-1998) graduated from Williams College and Harvard Law School. During World War II he served in Europe as a U.S. Army intelligence officer, and was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal. After the Nuremberg trials, Taylor practiced law in New York City, taught at Columbia Law School and the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law, and published a number of books, including Munich: The Price of Peace, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for best nonfiction work of 1979.

From Publishers Weekly:

The chief prosecutor of the four-power Nuremberg trials (1945-1946) delivers the ultimate insider's account of the war-crimes prosecution of surviving Nazi leaders. A National Book Critics Circle Award winner for Munich: The Price of Peace , Taylor explains how the Allied governments established the legal basis for the tribunal and organized the courtroom proceedings. He introduces the defendants--Goring, Hess, Ribbentrop, Speer et al.--defines the charges against them, outlines the evidence and recounts individual defense strategies, closing arguments, judicial sentences and (in the case of those condemned to death) the details of their executions. Taylor casts doubt on the legality of the charges against Nazi publisher Julius Streicher and argues that Rudolf Hess, mentally incapable of defending himself, should not have been tried. (Incidentally, he clears up the intrigue surrounding how former Luftwaffe chief Hermann Goring managed to conceal the cyanide capsule with which he committed suicide.) This gripping eyewitness report of an unprecedented international military tribunal is the definitive work on the subject. Photos.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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9780394583556: The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials: A Personal Memoir

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ISBN 10:  0394583558 ISBN 13:  9780394583556
Publisher: Knopf, 1992
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