Sun, Nov. 16, 2008

In Cahoots or Independent?

CK - Washington.   German Association of Judges -- the name does not tell all. A subtitle under the heading Deutscher Richterbund reads in translation: Association of Judges and Prosecutors. The long German version states, more politically correct and in consideration of the variety of genders within the professions: Bund der Richterinnen und Richter, Staatsanwältinnen und Staatsanwälte.

What are we to infer from that alignment of judges and prosecutors? Does it not confirm images conjured by movies about Nazi-era injustice? Does it accurately reflect the independence of judges guaranteed by the post-Nazi constitution?

The history page of the association's web site explains how the group formed in 1908, long before Hitler emigrated to Germany. The page discusses the post-1933 developments as well as the subsequent reflections on that era and lessons learned from the Nazi perversion of justice. Any bad taste should be reserved today to the alignment of judges and prosecutors who cozy up to the striking exclusion of other German lawyers.

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