The Buchenwald Trial or United States of America vs. Josias Prince of Waldeck et al. was a war crime trial conducted by the United States Army as a court-martial in Dachau, then part of the American occupation zone. It took place from April 11 to August 14, 1947 in the internment camp of Dachau, where the former Dachau concentration camp had been located until late April 1945. In this trial, 31 people were indicted for war crimes related to the Buchenwald concentration camp and its satellite camps, all of whom were convicted. The Buchenwald Trial was part of the Dachau trials, which were held between 1945 and 1948.
When American troops reached the concentration camps of the German Reich in the final stages of World War II, they were unprepared, partly because they were in the middle of combat, to face and trail the atrocities in the concentration camps. The care of mostly emaciated and very sick "Muselmänner" and the burial on the death marches of thousands of prisoners who perished from starvation or shooting presented a difficult task for the United States Army. Before the liberation of the Buchenwald concentration camp on 11 April 1945, the American soldiers had taken photographs after the capture of the Ohrdruf concentration camp, a subcamp of Buchenwald, that illustrate the horrific circumstances of the camp evacuation. As early as 12 April 1945 the Supreme Commander of the Allied forces, Dwight D. Eisenhower, visited the Ohrdruf concentration camp and, because of the terrible camp conditions, he asked for U.S. and British politicians, representatives of the United Nations and the U.S. press to view the camp. On 16 April 1945, 1000 people from Weimar under American command were mandated to visit Buchenwald concentration camp where they could witness the remaining traces of the mass extinction. Elsewhere nearby residents had to bury the victims from the evacuation marches.
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