Lessons from Nuremberg: Why we must hold Putin accountable for waging a war of aggression (and why it’s important to talk about this now)

University of Wisconsin Historian Francine Hirsch

Monday, November 7, 2022 3:00 PM to 4:15 PM EST
Zoom Webinar

As Russia continues to wage a predatory war against Ukraine, international lawyers and world leaders have been drafting proposals for retribution and justice. Some have been calling for the creation of a “special international tribunal” on the Nuremberg model to try Russia’s leaders for planning and waging an illegal war of aggression. Why will it be critical to hold Putin and other Russian leaders accountable for waging a war of aggression? Why is it important to talk about postwar justice now? How can the history of war crimes trials help us to think about and plan for the future?

Francine Hirsch is the Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A historian of Modern Europe with a specialization in Russia and the Soviet Union, Hirsch recently published Soviet Judgment at Nuremberg: A New History of the International Military Tribunal After World War II, revealing the unexpected contribution of Stalin's Soviet Union to the International Military Tribunal and to the postwar development of international law. Her first book was Empire of Nations: Ethnographic Knowledge and the Making of the Soviet Union. She is current writing about the history of Russian-American entanglement.

This session will be moderated by Steven Barnes, Director of the Program in Russian and Eurasian Studies and Associate Professor in the Department of History and Art History at George Mason University. He is the series organizer and teaches and researches broadly on the history of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, modern Russia, Kazakhstan, and the other independent countries from this imperial space.


This lecture is part of George Mason University's Fall 2022 Lecture Series, "Russia's War on Ukraine in Historical Perspective." For other events and information on the series, visit the main series page.

Register for the Zoom webinar for this and other events in the series.

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