Benjamin Schneider Wins Army Dissertation Fellowship

Benjamin Schneider, a PhD student in the history program, has won a dissertation fellowship from the U.S. Army's Center of Military History. The fellowship comes with a $10,000 stipend and access to the Center's facilities and technical expertise. Schneider's dissertation advisor, Christopher Hamner, writes that the award is "unquestionably the top fellowship in the field of military history" and that "for Ben to win the fellowship at GMU is a real tribute to his work." Schneider won the fellowship for his dissertation, tentatively titled "The Killing Spirit: American War Criminals and the Limits of Military Justice, 1942–1945." That dissertation examines how the U.S. Army investigated and tried allegations of war crimes against American soldiers fighting in Europe and North Africa during the Second World War, arguing that these allegations of killings and massacres, rather more numerous than previously supposed, proved particularly difficult for the army’s military justice system to handle. It was thus difficult if not impossible for the army to effectively police the behavior of its soldiers in the field.