On V-E day, before 2,000 of his students, the University of Chicago's 46-year-old President Robert Maynard Hutchins, onetime boy wonder of U.S. education, launched into the subject of war criminals (see INTERNATIONAL). What he said was provocative: he asked for mercy for the Germans. It was the first round in an argument of which the world would hear more.
Said President Hutchins:
"I venture to predict that the present excitement about war criminals will seem ridiculous a few years hence. At this juncture we can afford to remember what
Edmund Burke said of...