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Teacher's Guide: Hints for the Active Learning Questions


  1. Ask for volunteers to read their letters to the class. To avoid duplication, you may want to have students submit their proposed topic to the teacher for approval.

  2. Some background on the Saddam trial can be found at the Web sites of the Council on Foreign Relations and National Public Radio. Comparisons between this trial and the Nuremberg Trials could cover such topics as the trials' locations, whether the former leaders are being judged by citizens of their own country or other countries, the crimes of which the defendants are accused and the potential penalties, and the degree of stability in the rest of the country at the time of the trial.


  1. Before starting this activity, you might discuss as a class the broader question of why it is important not to forget terrible crimes like the Holocaust. You could open that discussion with the following statement, which Hitler is said to have made in 1939 when justifying his plans for mass murder: "Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?"

  2. Students might want to consider whether some jokes are acceptable only if they are made by a member of the group (such as an ethnic group) that the joke makes fun of.


  1. Before starting this activity, you might want to have students identify Nuremberg -- and Germany -- on a map.

  2. You might want to extend this activity by having each group find out about the postwar reconstruction of its assigned city, such as by searching the Internet for the city's Web site and then exploring the site to learn about the city's major features and attractions.


  1. For some context, students may want to read the statement on the I.C.C. by a former prosecutor at the Nuremberg Trials.

  2. Among the critics of the Nuremberg Trials was Robert A. Taft, a respected U.S. Senator, who stated, "About this whole judgment there is the spirit of vengeance, and vengeance is seldom justice."

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The Nuremberg Trials American Experience

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