War crimes prosecutor to discuss World War II atrocities
Former war crimes prosecutor Allan Ryan will discuss the capture and execution of a Japanese general who was found to be responsible for horrific war crimes committed by soldiers in the Philippines during World War II. Sponsored by the Pell Center, his lecture will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3 in the Young Building.
Ryan is the author of “Yamashita’s Ghost: War Crimes, MacArthur’s Justice and Command Accountability.” He will question whether Gen. Tomoyuki Yamashita’s prosecution represented a miscarriage of justice.
As seating is limited, those interested in attending are asked to RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or 401-341-2927.
Ryan graduated from Dartmouth College and the University of Minnesota Law School, where he was president of the Minnesota Law Review. He was a law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Byron White and served a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps. Ryan was also an assistant to the solicitor general of the United States, arguing eight cases on behalf of the government in the Supreme Court.
In 1980, Ryan was named the first director of the Office of Special Investigations in the U.S. Department of Justice, responsible for the investigation and prosecution of Nazi war criminals in the United States. Since 1985, he has been a lawyer at Harvard, first in the Office of General Counsel and now at Harvard Business School.
Published last year by the University of Kansas Press, “Yamashita’s Ghost” was awarded the outstanding book prize by the Society for History in Federal Government and was a finalist for the American Bar Association’s award for best book of the year. The book is being developed as a documentary to be broadcast on PBS in 2014.