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How Effectively Did the Occupying Powers Deal with the Nazi Legacy in the Years 1945-1949?

In: Historical Events

Submitted By lvkan
Words 529
Pages 3
In 1945 Germany had been defeated and WWII was over, the allies were in control of Germany each taking up there different occupation zones. The allies consisted of Russia, America, Britain and France. They were tasked with dealing with the legacy that Nazism had left behind as well as dealing with the legacy of the war itself. When focusing on the Nazi legacy the allies faced the issues of the political vacuum of power now that the leading party of the nation for the last 12 years, also the systems and culture created by this. Their main ways of tackling the Nazi legacy boiled down to several major areas; denazification, democratisation and the Nuremberg trials. The success of dealing with the Nazi legacy was fairly limited especially with the division of germany, also in such a short time period the ally powers struggled to find their feet.
The Nuremberg trials which took place from the 20 november1945 -1 october 1946, were the trials of the leading Nazi war criminals or what was left of them. There were 13 trials in total over this time period and was the most tangible form of dealing with the Nazi legacy and holding those who were responsible. The prisoners were tried for; crimes against peace, war crimes, crimes against humanity and conspiracy, most of the evidence only came to light at the trials and are now what we consider most of the Nazi plans and actions. By the end of the trials 3 were acquitted and 12 were sentenced to death including Goring. The trials were able to sentence the remaining Nazis but aren’t the major way of dealing with the legacy they left. The trials set a president for what would happen to the Nazis and were rather symbolic of destroying the legacy, also by killing or sentencing the leading Nazis it prevented the reoccurrence of the Nazi party forming with any major members from the war. It also found the men rightly guilty of their…...

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