Letters

Published: 1995-10-01
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Charles Provan

More on Pfannenstiel and Robert Faurisson. It isn’t exterminationists alone who have their reasons for wanting to control who is allowed to view and who is prohibited from viewing historical documents relating to holocaust studies.

At the time I read Dr. Faurisson’s short 1986 analysis of the Pfannenstiel testimony in the Journal for Historical Review, I did not know all of what I have written in rebuttal above (see SR26). But I was quite curious about how Professor Faurisson could have reached the exact opposite conclusion from Rassinier about Pfannenstiel’s testimony, while examining the very same material I had.

Upon obtaining Faurisson’s fax number, I wrote a courteous letter to him inquiring whether I could examine copies of the correspondence mentioned in his brief discussion of Pfannenstiel. (I also asked him if he could tell me how to contact the excellent historical researcher, Dr. Henri Roques, the author of The Confessions of Kurt Gerstein.) I was sure that Professor Faurisson would let me see copies of the documents concerned, since:

1) Professor Faurisson was a champion of free access to historical data. He had criticized the Exterminationists for their refusal to grant access to historical documents. In particular, he had commented negatively on the International Red Cross records center at Arolsen, since they refuse access to revisionists who wish to conduct research at the archives there. Further, Dr. Faurisson had attacked the Auschwitz State Museum for not allowing him into the Archives because he was a Revisionist.

2) I had always supported Dr. Faurisson in my articles in the Christian News, both before and after I became convinced that the National Socialist government of Germany had gassed Jews during WWII. To my knowledge, my writings were the only Exterminationist call to protest the beating of Faurisson, and the worldwide harassment of Revisionists.

Hence, I was greatly surprised and puzzled when I received Professor Faurisson’s reply: He informed me that no discussion could take place between he and I, until I supplied him “with a photo or a drawing of a German execution gas chamber.”

I at first thought that perhaps the Professor had not understood my simple queries. I wrote a further courteous letter telling him that I had no photos, but that I could describe to him what the gas chambers were like, based upon the testimony of people who worked at the various Operation Reinhard camps. I also reaffirmed my willingness to compensate him for the copies and postage.

To my further surprise, I received another letter from Professor Faurisson, again insisting that I send him a drawing of the gas chambers before he would answer any of my questions. At this point, I sent to Dr. Faurisson a third letter, in which I wrote the following:

“February 20, 1992

Dear Professor Faurisson; Perhaps there has been some misunderstanding; I do not accept your precondition to discussing the Holocaust with you. I regard your precondition as unreasonable, since the camps under discussion (Chelmno, Belzec, Sobibor, and Treblinka) were destroyed long ago. Why do I have to come up with a blueprint of the gas chambers there, in order to obtain the address of Dr. Roques, and the correspondence between the eminent Rassinier and Dr. Pfannenstiel? I do not see the connection you have made. And why must this prevent discussion of other items, important also?

I realize that you are very busy, but you have taken the time to reply to me twice. Would it take any more time to fax me the address of Dr. Roques, or to tell me how I might obtain the correspondence between Rassinier and Pfannenstiel? This correspondence is very important, since you regard it as evidence that Pfannenstiel is an unreliable witness, which is at variance with the father of Revisionism, Paul Rassinier. You cite it as such in your article in the JHR, which I quoted.

Again, I am quite willing to pay for the copies and the postage. Can you help me, please? I ask because I respect your work.”

To this third letter, Dr. Faurisson never replied. However, I must tell those reading this article that I was able some time afterward to obtain the valuable Rassinier/Pfannenstiel correspondence due to the help of two sincere and very able Revisionists, to whom I owe a debt. So I was able to examine the documents, which in my opinion prove Rassinier correct and Faurisson wrong.

When the exterminationists have documents Faurisson wishes to see, and they won’t let him see them until he affirms the Holocaust gas chambers, the exterminationists are bad. But when Dr. Faurisson contradicts Rassinier, and someone asks to see what proof Dr. Faurisson cites, he won’t reveal the proof until the curious one “shows or draws him a gas chamber”.

This "no response” response fits in well with Professor Faurisson’s newly announced position on answering his exterminationist opponents. As he stated at the most recent IHR Convention while discussing the recently published Anatomy of the Auschwitz Death Camp:

“I think that we are going to have many, many books of this type, and I think it would be a mistake to try to answer those books. ... we should not waste our time . . any more, I think, with the problem of the gas chamber because there is no more problem in fact.”

Dr. Faurisson has in the past justly criticized many exponents of the exterminationist side, in particular the ridiculous manifesto by a group of French historians which declared that it is not necessary to prove anything about the gas chambers, since the beginning point in all investigations had to be that they existed. He has on several occasions asserted that the exterminationist viewpoint has become a religion, with Believers and with Heretics. Yet, is this not what he expects from revisionists? Belief in his assertions, with no proof necessary?”

Lou Rollins

Charles Provan goes too far when he suggests Pfannenstiel convinced Rassinier that there were gas chambers at Belzec. And how can we believe Pfannenstiel when Kurt Gerstein and Jan Karski both give contradictory “eyewitness” evidence about the Belzec gas chambers?

Provan’s lengthy piece in SR #26 is interesting, but I’m unclear as to Provan’s point. He seems to be defending the credibility of Wilhelm Pfannenstiel’s postwar claims to have witnessed a gassing of Jews at Belzec. But is he?

A couple of years ago Provan was defending the credibility of Kurt Gerstein as a self-proclaimed witness to a gassing of Jews at Belzec. But as Provan is clearly aware, there are some serious discrepancies between the testimony of Gerstein and that of Pfannenstiel.

So which of these two different accounts of a gassing at Belzec does Provan now believe? Some of Gerstein’s and some of Pfannenstiel’s? All of Pfannenstiel’s and none of Gerstein’s, or vice versa?

I think Provan is misrepresenting Paul Rassinier’s position vis a vis the Belzec “gas chambers” Rassinier found Pfannenstiel’s private testimony sufficiently credible that he told Pfannenstiel that he would never categorically assert “There were no gas chambers in Nazi camps.”

Contrary to what Provan appears to think, that does not necessarily mean that Pfannenstiel’s testimony definitely convinced Rassinier, or that Rassinier positively believed in the existence of gas chambers at Belzec. Rassinier did not say, “There were gas chambers at Belzec — no doubt about it.” He did not say, “I believe there were gas chambers at Belzec. No question about it.”

Indeed, one point that Provan has omitted to mention is that Rassinier, despite his being impressed with Pfannenstiel’s sincerity, definitely did not believe one detail of Pfannenstiel’s “eyewitness description” of a gassing at Belzec, the detail concerning the time required for the said gassing.

So Provan has, in a sense, exaggerated Rassinier’s favorable attitude towards Pfannenstiel’s testimony.

While it’s true that respected revisionist researcher L.A. Rollins (heh, heh) did write, “Thus, Pfannenstiel pretty much agreed with the revisionists about the Gerstein statement, but, nevertheless, claimed to have witnessed a gassing of Jews at Belzec. Thus far, revisionists have been content to attack the extremely dubious Gerstein statement, and have not seen fit to even mention the Pfannenstiel deposition which appears to be somewhat more credible.”

However, I wrote that 12 years ago or more. I would not write it today, because it’s no longer true.

Since I made that statement, Faurisson initiated some discussion of Pfannenstiel in at least of one his published pieces. And Alan Critchley had something in Michael Hoffman’s newsletter in which Pfannenstiel was cited, (possibly as a reliable witness) regarding gassings.

Orest Slepokura

Got your newsletter today inside its distinctive pink envelope (are you making a political or fashion statement?). When your CODOH Website goes Online, I bet it’ll go off like a bomb, a revisionist bomb, to be sure! Your newsletter had a lot of good stuff, as usual. One point I want to make. It’s this: the whole revisionist argument has to encompass more than just the ongoing, never-ending debate regarding the few primary Holocaust stories.

It’s got to also include stuff like the Castlemont High School kids cheering the slaughter of the Jews at an afternoon showing of Schindler’s List during an educational field trip designed to “sensitize” them to the fate of European Jews during WWII.

It’s got to include the socio-cultural landscape, too, with its fetish for politically correct victimology and so on. And a score of other sub-themes as well. For example, even your money troubles and family worries should be part of the story. Gorbachev gave us communism with a human face. Smith gives us revisionism with a human face. I like that.

Additional information about this document

Author(s) Orest Slepokura, Charles D. Provan, Lou A. Rollins
Title Letters
Sources Smith's Report, no. 26, September 1995, pp. 6f.
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Dates published: 1995-10-01, first posted on CODOH: Sept. 21, 2015, 5:13 a.m., last revision: n/a
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