It is perhaps the most notorious espionage case in the history of the United States -- the trial of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg in 1951 for conspiracy to spy for the Soviet Union. The Rosenbergs were arrested, charged, and tried in the context of the Cold War, against a backdrop of fear and anti-Communist sentiment. They were convicted, sentenced to death, and executed. The court proceedings took place in Courtroom 110 of the historic federal courthouse at 40 Foley Square, now known as the Thurgood Marshall United States Courthouse.
This program reenacts portions of the trial and sentencing. It examines questions such as: How does our system of justice bend under the weight of national crisis? Were the Rosenbergs Soviet spies? What was Ethel's role -- if any? And did the Rosenbergs deserve the death penalty?