Chapter 1: The Court as an offspring of centuries of peace with justice
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This first chapter discusses how the lessons of history demonstrate the link between the fight against impunity and the prevention of the most serious international crimes. The chapter describes how impunity for the crimes in World War I imputed to Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany and the impunity for the Armenian genocide by the Ottoman Empire led ultimately to the Holocaust by the Nazi government. The genocide in World War II finally incited the Allies to establish the first major international criminal tribunal at Nuremberg and Tokyo. In turn, the twentieth-century genocides in the Balkans and Rwanda led the UN Security Council to establish the non-permanent ad hoc tribunals that established some of the major jurisprudential rulings on charging and convictions for the most serious crimes. These recurring international crimes showed the need for a permanent tribunal, which led to the birth of the International Criminal Court.

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