Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Nikitchenko was also the Soviet Union's judge at the Nuremberg trials, and was President for the session at Berlin. Nikitchenko's prejudices were evident from the outset. Before the Tribunal convened, Nikitchenko explained the Soviet perspective of the trials:
- "We are dealing here with the chief war criminals who have already been convicted and whose conviction has been already announced by both the Moscow and Crimea [Yalta] declarations by the heads of the [Allied] governments ... The whole idea is to secure quick and just punishment for the crime." on June 29, 1945 (8. Report of Robert Jackson, United States Representative to the International Conference on Military Trials, London, 1945 (Washington, DC: US State Dept., 1949), pp. 104-106, 303.; Whitney R. Harris, Tyranny on Trial: The Evidence at Nuremberg (Dallas: S.M.U. Press, 1954), pp. 16-17.)
True to form, Nikitchenko dissented against the three acquittals and argued for a death sentence for Rudolf Hess. Nikitchenko also famously said, in the lead-up to the trials, "If ... the judge is supposed to be impartial, it would only lead to unnecessary delays." also on June 29, 1945
During the trials, the French judges suggested that a firing squad should be used for the military condemned. Nikitchenko fiercely resisted this, arguing that the accused were common criminals who had disgraced their military ethos and tradition.
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