Good-bye Harvard, Hello JDL
Revisionists Rattle some "Hate" Mongers
Published: 1996-12-01

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In the last two issues of SR, we reported on the emergence of a new player in the “watchdog” industry, a Web site that called itself (somewhat grandiloquently) “The Harvard Law School Library's Guide to Hate Groups on the Internet.” The “Guide” was of particular relevance, of course, because its listings included the Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust.

While in a sense it's an honor, these days, to be so listed, just as it was an honor in Revolutionary times to have a price put on one's head for defying King George, neither CODOH nor I are engaged in “hate,” and don't take lightly being tarred with the word. CODOHWeb’s Richard Widmann immediately wrote a scathing letter of reproach to the “unknown” Harvard Librarian who edits the Guide. Next, I submitted a version of the four-column-inch ad you saw here last month to the Harvard Crimson asking if we really must all believe alike and urging readers to go to CODOHWeb and see for themselves what the controversy is all about. No dice, as reported in SR#37 (the Crimson informed me it “does not run ads from organizations which distribute hate”), but behind the scenes things were beginning to happen. We at CODOH were not the only revisionists protesting the standards of the Harvard Law Guide, and the Guide itself.

When Michael Hoffman, veteran revisionist and dissident writer, learned that the Harvard Law Library guide had smeared CODOH and other revisionists, while at the same time making no provision for groups arguably more disposed to hatred, he lit into them on the Internet with a searing critique of their hypocrisy, bigotry, and obscurantism.

“Let's repeat,” Hoffman scolded via E-mail, “when you list Bradley Smith's academic CODOH group as a hate site and fail to list the Web site of the bomb-throwing Jewish ‘Defense’ League, your credibility and objectivity are extinguished, whatever your protests and exclamations to the contrary.”

Normally, responses such as Hoffman's and CODOH's have no measurable, aboveground effect. That wasn’t the case here, though. Soon after Mike Hoffman had verbally cudgeled the anonymous person or persons in charge of the “bigotbusting” Web site, the Guide added a new category: not far from pages featuring “Christian Nationalists” and “Black Racialists,” the Jewish Defense League was gracing the Harvard Law Library Guide's new “Anti-Christian / Anti-Arab Bigotry” page.

Well, that wasn’t the only result. Michael Hoffman’s Web site, “Independent History and Research" ( promptly found its way into the Guide's collection of revisionist hatemongers.

Two questions for the Guide: are there any Holocaust Revisionists who are not haters? Is it possible that there ever could be?

The changes at the Harvard Law Library Guide to Hate Groups on the Internet were just beginning, however. In mid-November, the Guide began informing the public that it was no longer affiliated with Harvard, that it was now calling itself HateWatch, and was an independent, nonprofit organization.

We don't know yet exactly what brought this about—Widmann’s letter and the letters of others, the ad submitted to the Crimson (which certainly came to the attention of authorities at the Harvard Law School, no matter that the ad didn't run), our announced intention in the last issue of Smith's Report to submit the ad to student newspapers around the country—and/or the white heat of Michael Hoffman’s words—but something caused the nameless, faceless operatives behind the Guide to give up the plush Harvard association, and the university to put some public distance between itself and the hatewatchers, because somebody seems to have gone over the side.

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Author(s): Bradley R. Smith
Title: Good-bye Harvard, Hello JDL, Revisionists Rattle some "Hate" Mongers
Sources: Smith's Report, no. 38, December 1996, pp. 5f.
Published: 1996-12-01
First posted on CODOH: Oct. 2, 2015, 3:26 a.m.
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