An embarrassing necessity
The Tokyo trial of Japanese leaders, 1946–48
in Domestic and international trials, 1700–2000

The magnitude and scale of the atrocities committed in the Second World War rendered it urgent to decide, how German and Japanese leaders should be punished. Evidence relating to the charge of crimes against peace was to be collected by the deputy British prosecutor who would assist in the preparation of the prosecution in Tokyo. Preparations for the Tokyo trial were influenced significantly by preceding arrangements for the analogous trial of Nazi leaders in Nuremberg. B. V. A. Röling believed that bias was often shown towards the prosecution and against the defence but that in total the trial had been reasonably fair and certainly necessary. There were undoubtedly numerous weaknesses in the structure and development of the Tokyo trial. Richard Minear made the most of the defects in his lively, concise survey of the trial.

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Domestic and international trials, 1700–2000

The trial in history, volume II

Editor: R. A. Melikan

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