By Arthur Jay Klinghoffer;Judith Apter Klinghoffer
Confronted with injustice, what can a involved citizen do? In 1933, while Hitler blamed Communists for atmosphere the Reichstag on hearth, ecu and American legal professionals replied by means of staging a countertrial, which proved them blameless and finally resulted in their free up, launching a brand new unofficial method of advancing human rights. This publication is the 1st complete account of voters' tribunals. It tells the background of such tribunals from this primary good fortune to the combined list of next efforts: the Moscow express trials, the yank warfare in Vietnam, eastern sexual slavery, the Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe, and the excesses of “global capitalism.”
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Additional info for International Citizens' Tribunals: Mobilizing Public Opinion to Advance Human Rights
29 The Nazis reacted to the international publicity with a combination of image enhancement and rebuttal. On September 9, Rudolf Hess (head of the political section of the Nazi Party) had ordered that foreigners in Germany should not be harassed; on September 11, there were no Nazi provocations when a trainload of Jewish refugees left Berlin. The Nazis also appear to have been behind the publication on September 14 of “Armed Insurrection—Revelations on the Attempt at Communist Revolution on the Eve of the National Revolution,” an effort to counter the “Brown Book” and the London tribunal opening that day.
A trial was looming but, so far, there had been no indictment. It was ﬁnally issued on July 24, but not made public. Dimitrov received a copy on August 3. 24 Both the Soviet Union and Germany recognized that bilateral state ties had their limits. The Kremlin was not about to cede an advantage to the Nazis in the battle between rival ideological camps, nor was it prepared to stand by while the German Communist Party was decimated. Acting behind the scenes through the Comintern, it therefore orchestrated a campaign to prove the innocence of the four Communists accused along with van der Lubbe of setting the ﬁre.
The public image of these movements did not include recognition of Communist sponsorship, a perception enhanced by securing the support of prominent noncommunists such as Albert Einstein. The prestigious German-Jewish physicist was a member of International Workers’ Aid and served on the steering committee of the League Against War and Fascism. Muenzenberg was in Berlin when the Reichstag ﬁre broke out. While thousands of Communists were being arrested that night, he managed to make his way to the Saar and later crossed into France.