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178.Berlin Wall guard given 3 1/2 years Man fleeing to West was shot to death

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发表于 2023-1-13 20:49:19 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
Berlin Wall guard given 3 1/2 years Man fleeing to West was shot to death

https://www.baltimoresun.com/new ... 92021006-story.html

BERLIN — BERLIN -- A 26-year-old former East German border guard at the Berlin Wall became yesterday the first person sentenced to prison for carrying out the orders of his government by killing a man trying to escape to the West.

Chief Judge Theodor Seidel called on the principle of the Nuremberg war crimes tribunal after World War II in sentencing Ingo Heinrich to 3 1/2 years in jail for shooting Chris Gueffroy and his companion, Christian Gaudian, who were trying to flee to West Berlin in 1989.

"There is a central area of justice which no law can encroach upon," the judge said. "The legal maxim 'whoever flees will be shot to death' deserves no obedience."

The Nuremberg trials created a precedent that people who commit crimes on government orders are also personally liable for them. But the Nuremberg trials were limited to war crimes, and there has been some debate over how applicable its rulings should be to peacetime Communist East Germany.

Many Germans criticized the border guard trial as singling out four young soldiers when former East German leader Erich Honecker and other top-ranking Communists remain free. Mr. Honecker, 79, has been charged in four deaths, but has taken refuge in the Chilean Embassy in Moscow.

Even the prosecution had only asked for suspended sentences.

Although the other three guards also shot at or wounded the two East Germans trying to escape, Judge Seidel ruled that they had not been so "brutal" in carrying out the East German shoot-to-kill policy.

Mr. Gueffroy, who died Feb. 5, 1989, was the last person killed while attempting to escape East Germany. Nine months later, anti-Communist protesters breached the Berlin Wall. East and West Germany were reunited in October 1990.

Berlin Justice Minister Jutta Limbach said the trial will not be the last one. Because Germany has no statute of limitations for murder, all 200 killings along the border between East and West Germany could result in trials, with up to 1,000 people being charged.

Capping the divisive four-month trial with a two-hour explanation of his decision, Judge Seidel said that he was not trying to tackle the general issue of whether a country had the right to issue a shoot-to-kill order, but considered only whether by East German standards it was necessary to kill people who only wanted to cross the border.

Witnesses testified that Heinrich, 26, shot Mr. Gueffroy with a burst from his submachine gun aimed at the upper chest. Mr. Gaudian, who was wounded, testified earlier that he and Mr. Gueffroy had given themselves up and were standing 40 yards away from the soldiers with their hands raised.

Andreas Kuehnpast, 25, was given a suspended two-year sentence for wounding Mr. Gueffroy in the leg with an unnecessarily long blastfrom his gun. Peter Schmett, 27, and Mike Schmidt, 26, were acquitted because they had fired warning shots wide of the two men.

More than 600 of the 900 residents of Mr. Schmett's hometown of Drachhausen recently signed a petition calling on the government to drop the charges. Local people said Mr. Schmett could not have been expected to question the laws of a country that was internationally recognized.

"It was unfair that he was sitting in court while Honecker sits in a Russian dacha. I'm glad that the judge let him off," Drachhausen Mayor Willi Lehman said.

Mr. Honecker was spirited off to Moscow by Soviet officials, and attempts to bring him back to stand trial for the shoot-to-kill order have become bogged down in Russian politics.

Mr. Schmett said he was relieved to be free and would go back to Drachhausen to work as an electrician.

"But I'll still carry this and the sight of Chris Gueffroy's death with me for the rest of my life," he said.

Mr. Gueffroy's mother, Karin, said she "could live with" the decision. Critical that the state prosecution only asked for suspended sentences, she said Judge Seidel had been right in sentencing Heinrich to jail. "Otherwise, where would the justice have been?"

Heinrich said he may appeal.

https://www.baltimoresun.com/new ... 92021006-story.html
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 楼主| 发表于 2023-1-13 20:49:52 | 显示全部楼层
本帖最后由 Reader86 于 2023-1-13 09:51 PM 编辑

奇怪的人:身在底层,却具有统治阶级的意识

林语堂:“中国就有这么一群奇怪的人, 本身是最底阶层, 利益每天都在被损害,却具有统治阶级的意识。在动物世界里找这么弱智的东西都几乎不可能。”

第一个故事:自由

清末,法国使臣罗杰斯对中国皇帝说:“你们的太监制度将健康人变成残疾,很不人道。”没等皇帝回话,贴身太监姚勋抢嘴道——“这是陛下的恩赐,奴才们心甘情愿。怎可诋毁我大清国律,干涉我大清内政!?”

大清国人人有病。什么病?做了奴隶而不知道自己是奴隶,还以为自由是病态的。林语堂先生曾说过,中国有一类人,身处社会最底层却有着统治阶级的思想。

第二个故事:权利

十八个世纪,德国皇帝威廉一世曾在波茨坦建立了一座行宫。一次,他住进了行宫,登高远眺波茨坦市的全景,但他的视线却被一座磨坊挡住了。皇帝大为扫兴。这座磨坊“有碍观瞻”。他派人与磨坊主去协商,打算买下这座磨坊,以便拆除。

不想,磨坊主坚决不卖,理由很简单:这是我祖上世代留下来的,不能败在我手里无论多少钱都不卖!皇帝大怒,派出卫队,强行将磨房拆了。

倔犟的磨坊主向法院提起了诉讼。让人惊讶的是,法院居然判皇帝败诉。并判决皇帝在原地按原貌重建这座磨坊,并赔偿磨坊主的经济损失。皇帝服从地执行了法院的判决,重建了这座磨坊。

数十年后,威廉一世与磨坊主都相继去世。磨坊主的儿子因经营不善而濒临破产。他写信给当时的皇帝威廉二世,自愿将磨坊出卖给他。威廉二世接到这封信后,感慨万千。

他认为磨坊之事关系到国家的司法独立和审判公正的形象。它是一座丰碑,成为德国司法独立和裁判公正的象征,应当永远保留。便亲笔回信,劝其保留这座磨坊,以传子孙。并赠给了他6000马克,以偿还其所欠债务。小磨坊主收到回信后,十分感动。决定不再出售这座磨坊,以铭记这段往事。

正如十八世纪中叶英国首相威廉·皮特所说:“即使是最穷的人,在他的小屋里也敢于对抗国王的权威。屋子可能很破旧,屋顶可能摇摇欲坠;但风能进,雨能进,国王不能进,他的千军万马也不敢跨过这间破房子的门槛。

人最自由、自主、安全和独立的时候是在被称为家的房子里,如果连这一栖身之地都不是自己所有的,人到哪里去寻求和确保自己的独立自主安全和幸福了?

财政权是其它权利的基础和保障,也是人类自由和尊严的根基。财政权使个人权利具体化,从而在根本上限制了政府对个人权利的侵犯。


第三个故事:良知

这个故事发生在柏林墙倒塌之后的德国。1991年9月,统一后的柏林法庭上,举世瞩目的柏林围墙守卫案将要开庭宣判。这次接受审判的是4个年轻人,30岁都不到,他们曾经是柏林墙的东德守卫。

两年前一个冬夜里,刚满20岁的克利斯和一个好朋友,名叫高定,一起偷偷攀爬柏林墙企图逃向自由。几声枪声响,一颗子弹由克利斯前胸穿入,高定的脚踝被另一颗子弹击中。克利斯很快就断了气。他不知道,他是这堵墙下最后一个遇难者。那个射杀他的东德卫兵,叫英格·亨里奇。当然他也绝没想到,短短九个月之后,围墙被柏林人推到,而自己最终会站在法庭上因为杀人罪而接受审判。

柏林法庭最终的判决是:判处开枪射杀克利斯的卫兵英格·亨里奇三年半徒刑,不予假释。他的律师辩称,他们仅仅是执行命令的人,根本没有选择的权利,罪不在己。

法官当庭指出:“东德的法律要你杀人,可是你明明知道这些唾弃XX而逃亡的人是无辜的,明知他无辜而杀他,就是有罪。

作为警察,不执行上级命令是有罪的,但是打不准是无罪的。作为一个心智健全的人,此时此刻,你有把枪口抬高一厘米的主权,这是你应主动承担的良心义务。”

在这个世界上,良知是最高的准则,是不允许用任何借口来无视的。自然法永远高于社会法。

https://www.weibo.com/ttarticle/p/show?id=2309634478909293920725


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 楼主| 发表于 2023-1-13 22:27:56 | 显示全部楼层
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 楼主| 发表于 2023-1-15 22:43:05 | 显示全部楼层
本帖最后由 Reader86 于 2023-1-15 11:44 PM 编辑

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