Crimes against Humanity

  The term “crime against humanity” first found its way into diplomatic parlance in 1915 to describe Turkish massacres of Armenians. Soon forgotten along with the Armenian genocide itself, the term reappeared in 1945 in relation to the Holocaust and other atrocities committed by the Nazis. Although the conventional usage of “crimes against humanity” refers to large-scale murder of civilians, the words themselves could be interpreted in an additional sense: crimes of dehumanization. And dehumanization is indeed a prerequisite for genocide and other forms of mass murder. Certainly the Holocaust as we know it could not have happened without three levels...

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