Honors Program

Spring Showcase Presenters

Evan Frauhiger

Title: “The Legacy of the Nuremberg Trials: An International Double Standard”
Major: History
Minors: Political Science; International Studies Certificate
Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Christine Erickson (History)

Evan Frauhiger is a senior and will be graduating in May with a Bachelor’s Degree in history, a minor in political science, an international studies certificate and an honors certificate.  Evan is the recipient of the Outstanding History Senior Award and Excellence in International Studies Award. Upon graduation at IPFW, Evan will be attending William and Mary College of Law in Williamsburg, Virginia for the fall 2015 semester with a 40% scholarship for all three years.  He plans to pursue international human rights law upon graduating from William and Mary in 2018.

Abstract

Following the conclusion of the Second World War, the United States, the Soviet Union, Great Britain and France came together to organize an international tribunal to hold Nazi commanders and soldiers accountable for their heinous crimes during the war.  The series of cases brought against the Nazis were collectively called the Nuremberg Trials and the event began on November 20, 1945.  The Nuremberg Trials commenced with a clear purpose, to bring to trial and punish those who were guilty of crimes during World War II.  Yet, the trials also had a much more significant purpose as well.  The court at Nuremberg was charged with setting up a new foundation for international law that would create new laws and procedures for all future conflicts including establishing and defining the concepts of war crimes and crimes against humanity.  These new policies were supposed to apply to every country across the globe, including the four nations sitting in judgment.  However, as time passed and the Nuremberg Trials moved further away from international memory, these new laws and procedures were ignored by the very countries that established them in the first place.  When these countries proved guilty of the very crimes that they had prosecuted the Nazis for following World War II, they used a separate standard of judgment that allowed them to escape unscathed by international law.  American actions during the Vietnam War in the town of My Lai, Russian involvement during the First Chechen War in the village of Samashki, and British policies in Kenya during the Mau Mau Uprising all violated international law.  These three countries were guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity as set down by the Nuremberg Trials but each escaped punishment.  A double standard in international law has been established following World War II and it threatens the sanctity of law and disrespects the loss of human life suffered in Vietnam, Chechnya, and Kenya.