The Dawn of a Discipline: International Criminal Justice and Its Early Exponents
The history of international criminal justice is often recounted as a series of institutional innovations. But international criminal justice is also the product of intellectual developments made in its infancy. This book examines the contributions of a dozen key figures in the early phase of international criminal justice, focusing principally on the inter-war years up to Nuremberg. Where did these figures come from, what did they have in common, and what is left of their legacy? What did they leave out? How was international criminal justice framed by the concerns of their epoch and what intuitions have passed the test of time? What does it mean to reimagine international criminal justice as emanating from individual intellectual narratives? In interrogating this past in all its complexity one does not only do justice to it; one can recover a sense of the manifold trajectories that international criminal justice could have taken.
Professor Aron Trainin (1883–1957), an outstanding Russian and Soviet criminal law scholar, has played a leading role in academic support of the Soviet Union’s team in Nuremberg and contributed to the drafting of the IMT Charter and Judgment. His writings to a large extent shaped the Soviet approach to international criminal law. The chapter addresses Trainin’s biography and follows the major steps in his academic career from its beginning in tsarist Russia to its the peak, when Trainin held the positions of associate member of Soviet Academy of Sciences and professor at Moscow University. The chapter traces the sources of Trainin’s interest in international criminal law and addresses the scholar’s contribution to the ICL. The author focuses specifically on two areas, where the impact of Trainin’s was significant – a legal justification for crimes against peace, and the concept of complicity.