Sunday, March 20, 2011

Staughton Lynd: Nuremberg Principles and Conscientious Objection

There is a contradiction in U.S. law concerning conscientious objection. The Nuremburg Tribunal was premised on the concept that an individual must refuse to commit war crimes in a particular war. High-ranking German and Japanese personnel who were found to have violated this mandate were executed. The Nuremburg concept has been incorporated in the United States Army’s manual. Yet, the law of conscientious objection still requires a member of the military to object to service in all wars, that is, to be a pacifist, in order to qualify for conscientious objection. This must be changed.

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