TITLE

A Global Conspiracy? The Berlin-Tokyo-Rome Axis on Trial and its Impact on the Historiography of the Second World War

AUTHOR(S)
Hedinger, Daniel
PUB. DATE
October 2016
SOURCE
Journal of Modern European History;2016, Vol. 14 Issue 4, p500
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
The Tokyo and Nuremberg tribunals led to the disappearance of the Axis alliance. In this process, a domestication of the past commenced in both Germany and Japan as the memory of the war became regionalised and, above all, nationalised. This has had paradoxical consequences to this day: we have been left with a history of the Second World War in which the world has been left out. This article argues that the starting point for these developments is to be found in the judicial logic of the proceedings, particularly in how the charge of a global conspiracy against peace was applied and finally rejected at Nuremberg and Tokyo. The "judicial model" pre-empted many of the later historiographical debates. As is shown, those tribunals also generated the sources that proved to be of fundamental importance for historiography in the decades that followed. The argument is made that we should not merely see the Axis through the prism of the tribunals. Rather, the "judicial model" should be discarded and the focus shifted to the complex, interacting and transnational relations between Germany, Italy and Japan before 1945. What then becomes apparent is a global Axis moment in the interwar period. This will help us better understand the worldwide entanglements from which the Second World War originated.
ACCESSION #
120489737

 

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