ICJ Timeline Cover.

Cover of the ICJ Timeline.


Upholding the Nuremberg principles through the work of the International Criminal Court and other initiatives....

This section of the Nuremberg film website is devoted to people and organizations involved in the struggle to protect human rights and deter genocide and other crimes against humanity.




Ben Ferencz began his career as a young prosecutor in the trial of the Nazi Einsatzgruppen (The United States of America vs. Otto Ohlendorf, et al) – the 9th of 12 trials held in Nuremberg following the 1st major trial against the top Nazi leaders (the IMT). Born in 1920, Ben Ferencz remains a ferocious fighter for human rights, and a staunch advocate for Nuremberg's legacy court, the International Criminal Court (ICC), based in The Hague. Like Justice Jackson, Ferencz argues eloquently for replacing the law of force with the the force of law. Ferencz is one of those who is pushing to expand the ICC's jurisdiction so that it may be permitted to prosecute the crime of aggressive war. In 2009, he and Judge Antonio Cassese were awarded the Erasmus Prize & the Dutch equivalent to the Nobel Peace Prize -- and the award ceremonies included the world premiere of Nuremberg: Its Lesson for Today [The Schulberg/Waletzky Restoration]. For a biography of Benjamin Ferencz, and numerous pertinent articles by him, please visit his website: www.benferencz.org.





The Office of Global Criminal Justice of the U.S. Department of State, led by Ambassador-at-Large Stephen J. Rapp, formulates U.S. policy responses to atrocities committed in areas of conflict and elsewhere in the world. The office coordinates U.S. Government support for war crimes accountability in the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Cambodia, Iraq, and other regions where crimes have been committed against civilian populations on a massive scale.

Ambassador Rapp formerly served as Senior Trial Attorney and Chief of Prosecutions at the ICTR (International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda) and as Prosecutor of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. Although the United States Senate did not ratify the 1998 Rome Treaty that created the International Criminal Court is not a party to it, Rapp, like Ferencz, he is a staunch advocate of the ICC. Under his leadership, the U.S. is participating as an observer in the various meetings of the States Parties. As regards the issue of aggressive war, current U.S. policy is that, "should the Rome Statute be amended to include a defined crime of aggression, jurisdiction should follow a Security Council determination that aggression has occurred.” To read the 2011 statement of the Obama administration on cooperation with the International Criminal Court: http://www.amicc.org/docs/ObamaPolicy.pdf

Ambassador Rapp flew to Germany to be present for the Berlin Film Festival screenings of Nuremberg: Its Lesson for Today. Following a special screening for 450 German high school students, he spoke to the kids about his own experience as a prosecutor of crimes against humanity. He has since presented the film in Los Angeles, Hanoi, Kampala, Beijing, Tokyo, and in the UK House of Parliament. For a biography of Ambassador Rapp, please visit: www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/biog/129455.htm.



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THE RECKONING is a terrific documentary made by Pam Yates, Paco de Onis, and Peter Kinoy about the formation and mandate of the International Criminal Court (ICC).  It also features a very young Ben Ferencz arguing his case against Otto Ohlendorf and the Einsatzgruppen before the Nuremberg Military Tribunal, showing the long chain that leads from Nuremberg to The Hague.  This film is must viewing for anyone interested in understanding the workings of the ICC, and the challenges it still faces.  




The International Center for Transitional Justice is a human rights organization that assists countries pursuing accountability for past mass atrocity or human rights abuse. Since its inception, the Center has worked in more than 30 countries and on several transitional justice focus areas, providing assistance to justice and truth-seeking institutions, civil society organizations, governments, and international organizations. ICTJ seeks holistic solutions to promote accountability and create just and peaceful societies.



The Open Society Justice Initiative uses law to protect and empower people around the world. Through litigation, advocacy, research, and technical assistance, the Justice Initiative promotes human rights and builds legal capacity for open societies. It has offices in Abuja, Almaty, Amsterdam, Brussels, Budapest, Freetown, The Hague, London, Mexico City, New York, Paris, Phnom Penh, and Washington, D.C.

For more information: http://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/about/programs/open-society-justice-initiative.