The Nuremberg Trials VS The search for weapons of mass destruction. Does the end justify the means?

Essay by tichondriusHigh School, 12th gradeA+, September 2006

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Wartime is a period of much violence, bloodshed and damage. However, it is after the war that the complex task of restoring the country commences.

"The just war tradition is typically evoked when discussing the decision to launch a war (justice of war) and when evaluating the conduct of forces during war (justice in war). But the tradition does not explicitly specify principles for assessing justice after war, nor does it discuss state obligations upon achieving military victory."

This excerpt was taken from an article composed by Tony Lang and Mary-Lea Cox.

Once victory has been achieved by one side, it must take responsibility to pave the road to peace in the captured country by constructing a new political system. This is best summarized in Thomas L. Friedman's view when he says "you break it, you own it". But maintaining peace in a war-torn country is not easy. After the war, the victor naturally has an urge to take revenge for all the damage that the loser has inflicted upon that country.

However the so called winner in a conflict has a responsibility to bring justice to the captured state. Maintaining the balance between these two, the urge for revenge and justice, is a tedious task. In many conflicts throughout history the aftermath has been more of a problem to the defeated than the war itself, becoming financially crippled and being restricted in various ways. After a battle keeping an equilibrium of even-handedness and retribution is a daunting task.

Many court proceedings concerning war crimes through time have been subject to comments by critics who point out that justice had role in the final judgement of the accused. In the Nuremberg Trials of the twenty-one defenders that were held in custody, eleven were sentenced to death (over 50%), three were...