Letters
Published: 1993-11-01

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No Hardship

I have suffered no hardship or embarrassment whatsoever [as a result of the publicity over the appearance of my letter in the IHR Newsletter. See the Sept.-Oct. Journal, p. 38], and I deem it a great honour to be mentioned in [the new anti-Revisionist book] Holocaust Denial.

You will appreciate that in our struggle to maintain our freedom and independence in a fatherland of our own, it is of great importance to maintain our contacts with the outside world.

Thank you for the new format of the Journal.

L. F. Stolberg
House of Assembly
Parliament of South Africa
Cape Town, South Africa


A Whopper?

...The photo of a supposed massacre of German troops by US soldiers of the 45th Division, on page 7 of the May-June Journal, and the accompanying text, upon reading the story ... does not add up to my visualization of what a massacre would look like ...

I contacted the Museum of the 45th Infantry Division in Oklahoma City, and spoke with the curator about this. He explained that the "massacre" never happened...

I think you fell for a whopper. You are entirely, as a matter of policy, too anti-US. This attitude was reflected previously in your condemnation of the A-bomb against the Japs ...

Edward J. Toner, Jr.,
Howell, N.J.


Gut-Wrenching Photograph

Of the countless photographs that have been taken and published over the years, few stand out with greater emotional impact than the familiar images of the flag-raising by Marines on Iwo Jima, Ruby's shooting of Oswald, or the explosion of the airship Hindenburg.

Another photograph with this same impact is the one showing German guards being summarily killed at Dachau, which appears in the May-June Journal (p. 7). Its impact is as gut-wrenching as the camera can make it. Do we know exactly who took it, why he took it, and how he got by with it. Who commanded the 157th Regiment, 45th Division? Have any of the US soldiers shown here been identified? How may we get a copy of this photo?

W.B.
Auburn, Wash.

Yes, we know the precise circumstances under which this photo was taken. This is US Army photograph No. SC 208765, and is on file in the Pentagon photo archives. Copies can be obtained either from the Pentagon or from the National Archives in Washington, DC. This photograph was taken by Arland B. Musser, a T/4 with the US Army Signal Corps. It was cleared by Army censors, although the official caption text is quite misleading.

The most detailed account of this massacre is Dachau: The Hour of the Avenger, a memoir and investigation by Howard Buechner. It is available from Thunderbird Press, 300 Cuddihy Dr., Metairie, LA 70005. As Buechner establishes, the person most responsible for the massacre is Jack Bushyhead (now deceased), who was then serving as a First Lieutenant with the 3rd Battalion, 157th Infantry Regiment, of the 45th US Army Division.

We also recommend the 54-page booklet, Dachau: Reality and Myth, by John Cobden. (It is available from the IHR for $5.00, plus $1.00 shipping. [check www.ihr.org for current availability and price; ed.])

– The Editor


Terrific Pressure

When an attempt was made to show the new Irving video across Australia, Zionist and Jewish outfits threatened violence against the scheduled venues. All were forced to shut down, except the Brisbane venue. Police at the Sheraton Hotel, Melbourne, were told of a bomb threat, which seems to have been a hoax, but the meeting was nevertheless shut down on their advice. So things in Australia seem to be at about the same level as those in Canada.

Nevertheless, despite terrific pressure, censors refused to ban or give a restricted rating to the Irving video ["The Search for Truth in History"], and that shows courage and integrity on their part.

Thanks for publishing [in the March-April Journal, p. 48] my warning about the pending "Racial Vilification" law. As yet, this bill has not been passed. I thank you for alerting readers.

Geoff Muirden, Secretary
Australian Civil Liberties Union
283 Lygon St.
Carlton, Vic. 3053
Australia


Lipstadt's New Book

Deborah Lipstadt's new book, Denying the Holocaust, is appearing now in response to the considerable inroads that "Holocaust denial" has been making in recent years, particularly among educated Americans.

The author's main purpose, it seems, is to discourage still larger numbers of Americans from open-mindedly considering the arguments of Holocaust revisionists. Lipstadt tries hard to convince the reader that "Holocaust deniers" should never, under any conditions, be given a public or academic forum, particularly in the mass media, to present their views.

The "deniers," she argues, are really demonic racists and Nazis engaged in a grand conspiracy with a hidden anti-Jewish agenda. She dismisses revisionist arguments as spurious but sometimes clever fabrications. Because they cannot be regarded as valid or legitimate "ideas," "positions" or "arguments," revisionist views must never be addressed in any respectful way.

Lipstadt seems to have little faith in democracy, the power of reason or the salutary role of open discussion in a free society. While not putting it so bluntly, she argues that the public is too stupid to understand history.

It is "naive to believe that the 'light of day' can dispel lies, especially when they play on familiar stereotypes," writes Ms. Lipstadt (pp. 207-208). "Light is barely an antidote when people are unable, as was often the case in this investigation, to differentiate between reasoned arguments and blatant falsehoods. Most sobering was the failure of many of these student leaders and opinion makers to recognize Holocaust denial for what it was."

That this view is given respectful consideration in our society (to judge by the many laudatory reviews her book has received) is cause for grave concern. It is particularly troubling that even many scholars seem ready to despair of the power of right reason.

Lipstadt's essentially polemical work is filled with distortion and misrepresentation. I found that, while she maintained a relatively sober tone for much of it, she seemed to come unglued when writing the chapter about Dr. Arthur Butz. While reading it, I was moved to write the word "lie" at six different places in the margin. Particularly glaring is her clumsy and dishonest attempt to portray Butz as a wild-eyed, irresponsible conspiracy theorist.

B. A.
Chicago


Lipstadt's "Fine Scholarship"

About half a page of Lipstadt's book, Denying the Holocaust, is devoted to historical revisionism in Australia (pages 12-13). Claims by Lipstadt that I am "the leader" of the Australian League of Rights, that I have claimed that the Holocaust is a "gigantic lie," and that Fred Leuchter has visited Australia, are all incorrect, and amount to an "assault on truth."

I am not "the leader" of the Australian League of Rights, and am not now, and never have been even a member of the group. I understand that the League is a Christian group, that it promotes an economic theory of social credit, and that it believes in an international socialist conspiracy orchestrated by the left-wing Fabian Society. I am not a Christian, do not believe in social credit, and far from believing in a Fabian conspiracy theory, am a long-standing member of the Fabian Society, and a former member of its executive.

The only organisations I belong to, apart from the Fabian Society, are the Society of Labor Lawyers, Amnesty, the Free Speech Committee, the Voltaire (Free Speech) Institute, and the Australian Civil Liberties Union, of which I am President. It was because of my interest in freedom of speech, and my opposition to censorship, including censorship of history, that I became interested in historical revisionism. While I agree with the growing number of Jewish writers that the extent of the Jewish Holocaust has been exaggerated, I have never said it is a "gigantic lie."

The claim that Fred Leuchter has visited Australia is simply factually incorrect.

Lipstadt's "assault on truth" continues in the footnote relating to the half page of text on revisionism in Australia (footnote 49 on page 239). The seven sentences in the footnote relating to Dr. Amice Morsey contain three errors of fact.

On the dust jacket of Lipstadt's book, Michael Berenbaum, an official of the US Holocaust Memorial Council, praises this work as "fine scholarship." After reading what Lipstadt writes about Australia, I cannot be bothered checking the "fine scholarship" of the rest of her book.

John Bennett, President
Australian Civil Liberties Union
St. Carlton, Vic.
Australia


Good Work

Very good work on the article about the Nuremberg trials [Summer 1992 Journal]. I plan to reread it often. Information about this subject should be brought up to date every few years. The article about Treblinka [in the same issue] was highly informative.

C.M.
Parma, Ohio


Gerge Will's Polemic

In his recent syndicated column attacking Holocaust revisionism, George Will shows once again that he is a cynical liar who prospers as an obedient servant of those who control our media.

As contemptible and as unfair as it is, the column at least informs many readers for the first time of the existence of our views.
E.C.
Tulsa, Oklahoma

The primitive quality of Will's column is its own rebuttal. He must be desperate. Prominent journalists like Will are in trouble because they are (supposedly) committed to a standard of integrity. They enjoy ridiculing opponents for ignoring or distorting evidence. Will's own failure with regard to revisionist arguments should be pointed up.
G.P.
Washington, D.C.

Unable to offer valid arguments, George Will resorts to name-calling. He smears Weber as a "lunatic" and a "sinister cynic." Well, what else would one expect from such an entrenched Establishment figure?

Will takes a cheap shot against The Journal of Historical Review for an advertisement of Flashpoint, Ingrid Weckert's book about the 1938 "Crystal Night." According to Will, the thesis of this book is that "the Jews" benefited from the "Nov. 6, 1938, anti-Jewish rioting." This, he goes on, is the "drift of Holocaust 'revisionism'."

While he chides one young reporter for failing to read Lipstadt's book, it is obvious that Will has not read Weckert's study, nor does he have a grasp of the historical events of "Crystal Night" which took place not on the 6th, but rather on the 9th of November. Neither does Weckert so crudely claim that "the Jews" benefitted from this outburst of violence. She wrote instead of "certain Zionist elements" which may have benefitted. "Revisionism," asserts Will, "is a term of scholarship hijacked by pseudo-scholarship in the service of antisemitism." Just who can rightfully lay claim to this term, Will does not say. Would he grant that Harry Elmer Barnes – widely acknowledged as a leader of revisionist scholarship – fits the definition? If so, is Will aware of Barnes' expressions of doubt about the orthodox Holocaust story, or of his help in publishing the works of Paul Rassinier in English? Do the "anti-Semitic hijackers" referred to by Will include Jewish "deniers" like Joseph Burg and David Cole?
D. H.
Oldbridge, N.J.

The enemy has his hatred, and only his hatred.
R. K.
Milwaukee, Wisc.


Tudjman and Holocaust Revisionism

It has been brought to our attention that you are under the illusion that the President of Croatia, Franjo Tudjman, is in some way a supporter or sympathizer of your organization. Consistent with the claims your institute expounds, quite the reverse is true. As a historian and a decorated WWII Partisan who himself lost a brother to the Nazis, President Tudjman is fully aware of the evils of fascism...

Subsequent to Dr. Tudjman's election as president, several Serbian scholars issued a highly selective and distorted translation of his historical study Wastelands of Historical Reality as part of a deliberate smear campaign against Croatia intended to justify their aggression throughout the former Yugoslavia. Several reporters mistakenly and uncritically took the mistranslation at face value, resulting in the articles you cite in your July-August newsletter...

The claim that President Tudjman believes that only 900,000 Jews died in the Holocaust is without foundation, and derives from a selective mistranslation of a section of the book...

Marijan Gubic
Information Office
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Zagreb, Croatia


Maintain Standard

As a practising Roman Catholic and an intellectual follower of Socrates – who urged "Follow the argument wherever it leads" – I am fully aware of the real dangers of seeking truth through controversy. It is always possible that one may be proved wrong!

I am a retired journalist, my last post being that of Deputy Editor and Chief Reporter on the Catholic Pictorial, the official newspaper of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Liverpool. As a journalist, I repeatedly witnessed the problems that arise – even in Church circles, sadly – when one offers a view contrary to the prevailing wisdom of the age, especially if it seems to involve criticism of Jews or Blacks.

On occasions when I have spoken at public meetings, I experienced first-hand the blindness and deafness of Christians who are nominally committed to the search for truth, but who draw back when what they discover appears to conflict with what they are told by those who control the media and politics.

It takes great courage to tread the scholarly, as opposed to the propaganda, way. With this thought in mind, I reiterate the words in the concluding paragraph of the letter by I.H. in the July-August Journal: "The IHR has had a formidable impact because of its factual presentation of historical evidence and its scholarly analysis." I concur with this writer's appeal to always maintain a high standard.

Frank Brookes
Billinge, Wigan
Lanc., England


Praise for Docudrama Portrayal

A recent episode of the ABC television series "The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles" (broadcast July 24) deserves praise. I was pleasantly astonished to see this docudrama's generally accurate portrayal of the 1919 peace conference of Versailles, in which the victorious allied powers imposed their peace terms on Europe, the Middle East and part of Asia.

The Germans, who had agreed to an armistice in 1918 on the basis of Wilson's "14 points," were subjected to punitive and humiliating terms that violated solemn pledges. Even President Wilson was not spared in this episode, which points out his complicity. Arnold Toynbee, the distinguished British historian, was shown predicting that the Versailles settlement would mean another war within 20 years.

Also faithfully depicted is the deceit of Britain and France in their violation of wartime promises of independence made to the Arabs, and to Lawrence of Arabia. British greed for oil in Iraq was also brought out.

This episode is all the more gratifying because others in this series have contained common historical distortions.

Robert John
New York City


Lessons from a Toronto Holocaust Class

Reading about the Penn State "Holocaust History" course (Sept.-Oct. Journal, p. 45), reminded me of my own experience in the winter of 1986-87 when my wife, Lynda, and I, along with another couple, decided to attend a night course on the Holocaust at a Toronto High School. The first Zündel ["Holocaust"] trial had ended in the spring of 1985, and we were curious to know how this subject was being taught to high school students. As we very quickly learned, those in charge assumed that no one would dare break the hushed tone of reverence by asking inconvenient questions. It seems that we were expected merely to pay respectful homage to the Holocaust, and not actually study or, heaven forbid, critically examine it.

We had planned to keep a low profile, asking questions only at crucial points. But this was not to be. On the first evening instructor Frank Bialystok – who described himself as a child of "survivors" even though his parents, like many others, had left Poland in 1939 before the outbreak of war – wanted straightaway to probe our inner-most feelings on mankind's most "horrendous tragedy." He drew us into a tight circle and proceeded to ask each of us individually why we had decided to take this course. Not wishing to feign mindless adherence, we told him that we were looking for credible supporting evidence for Holocaust claims. Mr. Bialystok was further shocked when another student volunteered that her boyfriend didn't believe in the Holocaust. Thus ended the "inner feeling" session.

For the rest of the evening we were subjected to slides of Mr. Bialystok's recent visit to Auschwitz. When he came to a slide of the camp's alleged execution gas chamber, without comment he quickly flipped to the next slide. When I asked Bialystok what that slide had been, he evaded the question. He left class that night in a state of virtual shock.

On the second evening Bialystok came well-prepared to respond to our simple request for proof. There, to our surprise, was Peter Griffith, Crown Prosecutor in the first Zündel trial, and Alan Shefman of the League for Human Rights of the B'nai B'rith (the Canadian counterpart of the ADL). At the back of the class sat a guilt-ridden Anglican minister, along with an official from the government agency euphemistically known as the "Human Rights Commission." With the original course itinerary now completely discarded, the classroom had become a kind of intellectual battle field. That ostensibly independent officials could be trotted out on such short notice for our modest little group speaks volumes. To the surprise of those in charge, we weren't at all intimidated.

After Shefman was introduced, we were informed that tape recorders would not be permitted, even though Bialystok had specifically welcomed them on the first evening's class (when he was looking forward to a Holocaust love-in). Ignored were our queries of what they were afraid or even ashamed of. Shortly into Shefman's talk it became apparent why he didn't want his words recorded. He vehemently lit into the Institute for Historical Review, maligning – in a most mendacious manner – not only it but individually each member of the IHR Journal's Editorial Advisory Committee as well. We were given no satisfactory answers to our requests for evidence of his malicious claims.

Griffith told us that the "definitive" new edition of Raul Hilberg's book, The Destruction ofthe European Jews, contained conclusive proof of mass gassing. Unable to give any such evidence himself, he simply told us to read Hilberg's book. When I asked Griffith if he believed that hearsay evidence should be admissible in court, he declared in a sanctimonious monolog that not only did he believe that the use of hearsay evidence was counter-productive to a fair trial, but that our society's judicial rules of evidence did not permit it. When I pointed out that hearsay testimony had been permitted by the Nuremberg Tribunal, his tone changed to one of evasive rationalization. Griffith implied that the Tribunal was an omniscient body with correspondingly appropriate rules that were indispensable in dealing with such grotesque crimes. My retort that the Nuremberg courts were nothing more than victor-formulated bodies designed to convict the vanquished so unnerved him that he shouted at me to "shut up." With Griffith and Bialystok trying to put the best light on their non answers, and Shefman sniping from the side lines with, his ad hominem attacks, the evening passed quickly.

As we arrived for the next session, we were startled to find the classroom overflowing with people. What had begun as a small class of nine students – barely enough to justify a course – had grown into a gathering of 45 or 50, with not enough desks for everyone. Earlier that day, it turned out, Ernst Zündel had enquired about the course. Surrounded by a gaggle of media people, he was trying to register. In an effort to thwart his effort by claiming that the course was already fully booked, they had packed the classroom, mostly with other teachers and some volunteers from Jewish organizations. During that evening's session the guilt-ridden Anglican minister explained to the class just how thoroughly anti-Semitic the Bible was, and how this had set the climate that permitted the Holocaust to happen. I asked if he had studied the [Jewish] Talmud. He said that he had. To my question of whether there were anti-Christian or anti-Gentile passages in the Talmud, he embarrassingly retorted: "Nowhere near the anti-Semitic hate that is in the Bible."

At the next class the following week, the room was once again full. This time, though, the teachers were gone, replaced by Jewish volunteers. They hoped to overwhelm us. When the intimidating shouts and insults failed to stem the inconvenient questions, whole evenings were taken up with dogmadrama video tapes that allowed no time for questions and discussion. Those in charge even tried to intimidate us one evening by having two plain-clothes detectives from the so-called ethnic squad sit at the back of the room. We recognized them from the Zündel trial. During the eight week course, unregistered people wandered in and out of the classroom as if this was a Holocaust remembrance social club or a kind of changing of the Holocaust defense guard.

Frustrated that nothing they tried seemed able to stem our blasphemous questions, Mr. Bialystok resorted to a kind of censor's "final solution." Forbidding any further questions during instruction sessions, he announced that there would be a half-hour period for questions at the end of each evening's session. In practice we were lucky to get ten minutes; usually it was five. And with so many dedicated "seekers of truth" running interference, we were fortunate if we got in even a single skeptical question. More to the point, we never got even one cogent answer.

Typical was the performance of Harold Tropper, the author of None is Too Many, a book decrying Canada's refusal to take a boatload of Jewish refugees. His not so subtle message – of Canadian guilt and complicity in the Holocaust for sending refugees back to what he claimed was certain death – was expected to be humbly accepted as gospel. "Why should Canadians feel guilty about refusing a boatload of aliens," I impertinently asked, "when Israel is presently preventing hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from returning to their own homeland?" At that point all hell broke loose, with everyone shouting at once. Irrational statements, such as "don't bring Israel into this," were made. Tropper proclaimed (inaccurately) that "this wasn't true," and then refused to discuss the matter any further.

After the course had concluded, my wife tried for several weeks to arrange a meeting with the school principal. When she finally spoke with him, he seemed nervous and embarrassed, giving some pretty lame excuses for some of what had happened. He explained, for example, that the teachers who had packed the class had been invited for "educational" purposes. He was surprised and seemingly upset to learn about the two detectives who had been in the classroom. As a result of his meeting with my wife, he also learned that quite ordinary, middle class Canadians – and not trouble makers as Bialystok would have described us – could have trouble believing all the Holocaust stories.

While we didn't learn anything new about Holocaust history, we did learn something about how the guardians of the cult think, and to what lengths they will go to foster and protect their creed. We also had the satisfaction of seeing the course dropped altogether from the night school curriculum.

John Mortl
Toronto, Canada


Life Profoundly Altered

Over the years I have really appreciated The Journal of Historical Review. A number of Journal articles have been of absolutely outstanding quality, and I have no doubt that this trend will continue.

Holocaust Revisionism has profoundly altered my life. Apart from the fascination it engenders by revealing that things may not be what they seem, there is also the purely ethical and moral issue it tackles: were – and by implication are – the German people so beastly that they could commit crimes so horrible that they do not bear thinking about?

In such a climate of intense irrationality – for what else is the absence of thought on such an emotional issue? – one is forced against any better judgment to take sides: one becomes either pro-or anti-Jewish.

It is nonsensical to believe that, when History proves, on closer examination, to be different from what we have been told, this will only result in more prejudice. The opposite it true, as the late [Jewish, revisionist author] Joseph Burg saw so clearly. What is bound to cause anti-Semitism are the blind efforts of a section of organised Jewry and their allies to stamp out all debate on this burning issue, mostly by foul means – slander, banning, monopolisation of history, promulgation of anti-revisionist laws, and even violence. How different is the enlightened attitude of Alfred M. Lilienthal, who can see the real need to discuss openly and frankly even the very question of"anti-Semitism."

A very strong point in favour of the Revisionists is the emphasis they place on material as well as wartime documentary evidence, as opposed to the "official" historians who over-rely on "eyewitnesses." In this regard, one should single out Martin Gilbert who makes use of the latter kind of evidence with abandon, it would appear, in his book The Holocaust. By insisting on "what concretely took place?," Revisionists enable us to look at the past in the cold light of day, and so diminish that impulse to irrationality. Many disturbing questions remain, but the truth will make us free, even if the emerging picture is not to our liking.

It was a pleasant surprise to see my February 1992 letter to The Natal Witness reproduced in facsimile in the IHR Newsletter No. 88 [July-August 1992, p. 4]. The enclosed letter by me was published (in part) in The Weekly Mail, July 3-9, 1992. This paper is somewhat left-wing, and is read countrywide mainly (I am told) by the better educated, and in particular academics.

C. Zaverdinos
University of Natal
Faculty ofScience
Pietermaritzburg
South Africa


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Author(s): Geoff Muirden , Costas Zaverdinos , John T. Bennett , Robert John , et al. , Louis F. Stolberg , Edward J. Toner , Marijan Gubic , Frank Brookes , John Mortl
Title: Letters
Sources: The Journal of Historical Review, vol. 13, no. 6 (November/December 1993), pp. 47-51
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Published: 1993-11-01
First posted on CODOH: Nov. 27, 2012, 6 p.m.
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