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  • Unearthing the Holocaust: Serniki and the Australian War Crimes Trials

Unearthing the Holocaust: Serniki and the Australian War Crimes Trials

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Key information
Cost $5 per student Duration One school period Curriculum links Stage 5 History, Depth Study 6 – School-developed topic.
Stage 5: Elective history, Topic 1: Constructing history
Stage 6: HSC Legal Studies, Option 7: World Order
Stage 6: HSC Legal Studies, Option 7: World Order

All nations are obliged to trace, charge or extradite genocidal killers. Yet the effectiveness of international mechanisms such as the International Criminal Court continue to be hotly debated, as the will to prosecute war criminals remains firmly within the internal domestic realm of national states.

The Museum’s exhibit, Unearthing the Evidence, details the atrocities committed against the Jewish inhabitants of Serniki, a small village in the Ukraine. The artefacts on display were excavated to serve as the material evidence for the Australian War Crimes Trial that took place in South Australia between 1991 and 1993.

Through a workshop focusing on this collection, students will engage in a discussion of the massacre at Serniki and how it constitutes a war crime and, thus, a breach of international law.

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