Documentary "Peace Through Justice"

International Nuremberg Principles Academy
Peace Through Justice
The Legacy Of Thomas Buergenthal

In recognition of the life and work of Judge Thomas Buergenthal, the Honorary President of the Advisory Council of the International Nuremberg Principles Academy, the Nuremberg Academy has produced the documentary film “Peace Through Justice – The Legacy of Thomas Buergenthal”.

This film depicts his life and his groundbreaking work in the field of international human rights law, his dedication for international justice as well as the Nuremberg Academy and Thomas Buergenthal’s engagement for it. The project started in 2016 and resulted in a 42 min. documentary that was premiered in October 2018. The film is available in English, German, and French.

The life of Thomas Buergenthal is exemplary in many ways. Surviving the Holocaust at the age of eleven, he witnessed the aftermath of the war in Germany and emigrated to the U.S., where he made a model career in international law. As a professor, he was one of the first to establish the field of International Human Rights Law. In addition, he served as a judge on many international courts, including the International Court of Justice, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the United Nations Truth Commission for El Salvador, and the U.N. Human Rights Committee.

Although Thomas Buergenthal and his family were deported and his father killed in Buchenwald, he overcame his desire for vengeance to deal with this past by a rule of law approach, which he transmitted to his students all over the world.

The documentary accompanies Thomas Buergenthal and his family in Nuremberg, in Sachsenhausen, in his hometown Goettingen, and in Washington, D.C., where he taught for decades.


Past Screenings

13 April 2021, Film Screening and Conversation with Judge Thomas Buergenthal, online

25 January 2021, as part of the event series ‘Our Responsibility as Lawyers – Past, Present, Future‘ organised by the Higher Regional Court of Nuremberg, online

16 January 2020, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Jena, Germany

24 September 2019, Bavarian Representation in Berlin, Berlin, Germany

17 September 2019, International Human Rights Film Festival-Albania (IHRFFA), Tirana, Albania

26 June 2019, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington D.C., USA

10 December 2018, Omniversum, The Hague, The Netherlands

21 October 2018, Premiere at Courtroom 600 of the Nuremberg Palace of Justice, Nuremberg, Germany

This documentary has been realized with the kind support of the Zukunftsstiftung der Sparkasse Nürnberg.