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Stäglich, Wilhelm

Dr. Wilhelm Stäglich, German judge and historian, was an important revisionist writer, most notably for his detailed study, Der Auschwitz-Mythos.

Born November 11, 1916, he studied law and political science at the University of Rostock and the University of Göttingen, from where he received a doctorate in law (Dr. jur.) in 1951. For years he served as a Finance Court judge in Hamburg. He was the author of numerous articles on legal and historical subjects.

During the Second World War he served from mid-July to mid-September 1944 as an Ordonnanzoffizier (orderly officer) on the staff of an anti-aircraft detachment stationed near the Auschwitz camp. As part of his duties, he maintained contact with the SS camp command, and had unlimited access to the Auschwitz main camp, where the command was headquartered.

Disturbed by the obvious discrepancies between what he had witnessed during the war at Auschwitz , and the portrayal of the camp that emerged at war’s end, he resolved -- after years of silence -- to speak out, and to undertake a serious investigation of this important subject.

As punishment for some revisionist essay, he was dismissed as a judge in 1975 by court order, and forced into early retirement with a reduction of his pension.

His detailed book, Der Auschwitz-Mythos: Legende oder Wirklichkeit, was published in March 1979 by the Grabert Verlag of Tübingen. The book is a systematic, critical examination of the documents, testimonies, confessions and personal accounts that portray Auschwitz as a center of programmatic extermination by gassing and other means.

It was soon banned by German authorities, and in 1983 German police raided his publisher’s offices and confiscated the remaining unsold copies.

That same year the University of Göttingen “withdrew” or cancelled Stäglich’s doctoral degree – ironically on the basis of a law promulgated during the Hitler era.

For years Dr. Stäglich was a member of the Editorial Advisory Committee of the IHR’s Journal of Historical Review. His address in 1983 at the Fifth Conference of the Institute for Historical Review was published in the Spring 1984 IHR Journal. In 1986 an English-language edition of his book was published by the IHR under the title Auschwitz: A Judge Looks at the Evidence.

Wilhelm Stäglich died, age 89, on April 5, 2006.

Of this remarkable man, French professor Robert Faurisson once wrote:

“I do not wish to enumerate here everything which this extremely honest man, whom I admire, suffered in addition to that. Suffice it to say that Wilhelm Stäglich -- I should say Dr. Wilhelm Stäglich, German judge and historian -- has saved the honor of the judges and historians of Germany. He has lost everything, but not his honor.”

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