WAR CRIMES: The Source

That Justice Robert Jackson had made a great speech when he opened the Nürnberg trial, the world already knew. Just how great it was the world saw more clearly last week when Sir Hartley William Shawcross, Britain's Attorney General, opened the case for the British prosecution. Sir Hartley is one of Britain's most brilliant jurists. His day-long speech was an impressive, tightly logical, exhaustive dissertation. Yet rarely did it match Jackson's bold attempt to find law in ultimate source—the principles of men— rather than in statute, treaty, precedent.

It was largely a matter of emphasis. Both lawyers pointed to the...

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