Genocide can be defined as the organized killing of a group of people in order to eliminate any trace of their existence as a community . Because it requires a judicious approach and a complex organization , genocide is often identified as a state crime .
Genocides are often carried out for racial, ethnic, religious reasons or simply for the possession of a nation . Regardless of the cause, genocides are carried out by a powerful minority against a group of different characteristics and/or cultures.
Throughout history, it can be said that there have been a good number of organized killings against certain groups , thus defining the idea of genocide. Although the most popularly known was the genocide applied by Nazi Germany against the Jews, others of lesser repercussion took place in different geographical points of the world and in different historical moments. The Cambodian genocide from 1975 to 1979 and the Armenian genocide that took place in the Ottoman Empire between 1915 and 1923 are two illustrative examples from different times.
In legal terms, it is worth emphasizing that genocidal crimes are treated differently from ordinary murders. They are considered crimes against humanity and non-prescriptive, in addition to not being considered political offenses.
The word genocide is an invention of the Jewish lawyer Rafael Lemkin in 1944. Lemkin sought to create a series of laws that would persecute the practices that the Nazis used against Jews and defined the concept as follows: a series of coordinated and organized actions at different levels that they pursued the eradication of certain essential fundamentals to understand the life of diverse national groups whose final objective is the extermination of certain groups.
The Nuremberg trial , which took place at the end of World War II, sentenced the heads of Nazism for their war crimes, even more, it cited the word genocide among the various charges.
Etymologically, the term genocide has its origin in the Greek “genos” (which can be translated as race or nation) and also in the Latin root “-cida” which means to kill.