Allan A. Ryan

Document Type

Symposium Article


This Article explores the establishment of the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg beginning with the Moscow Declaration in 1943 and focusing on the Charter of the Tribunal in 1945, which, along with its charges, altered the course of international human rights law. Focusing on the way the Charter and its charges were devised, the author notes that the Tribunal’s existence was not a certainty after World War II and in fact it almost did not occur due to intense political debate that occurred in both domestic and international arenas. The Article argues that the creation of the Nuremberg Tribunal was the most significant development in human rights law in the twentieth century, as it has been used as the model for the tribunals established to deal with the horrors that occurred in Yugoslavia and Rwanda.