CODOH'S $50,000 Offer Keeps Making Waves on Campus and off

Published: 1998-01-01

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CODOH’s latest campus campaign, spearheaded by the reward offered for showing David Cole’s video on Auschwitz on a national TV network in prime time, has been the most successful first quarter thrust in the Campus Project’s eight-year history. Besides resulting in a record number of college and university newspaper ads, it has brought Holocaust revisionism substantial publicity off-campus in newspaper articles across America.

In addition to informing unprecedented numbers of university students of the wealth of revisionist scholarship available on CODOHWeb, our current campaign has driven college presidents and politicians to new lows of asininity in their attempts to suppress CODOH’s ads.

Last, and hardly least, the success of CODOH’s present effort has intensified the efforts of the Holocaust lobby to control campus papers, to censor CODOHWeb, to attack the Auschwitz video, and to make—in a brazen posting on the World Wide Web—a thinly veiled death threat to its writer and editor, David Cole.

First, the numbers. Over forty campus papers, with an estimated readership of more than 400,000, ran ads for the reward offer, or for CODOHWeb, or self-standing op-ed articles by CODOH associates Thomas Crowell and Martin Henry, a new voice from academia who has associated himself—pseudonymously—with CODOH. These totals, achieved in a span of two months, exceed the best CODOH has achieved in any previous fall quarter. The totals are significant not simply for their superlatives, but also because CODOH’s Campus Project is no longer a novelty. Student newspaper editors are now well aware of what CODOH is and what it stands for; the Anti-Defamation League has erected its defenses against us, including: an early warning system manned by its on-campus touts from the B’nai B’rith Hillel and other groups; a set of specious arguments against intellectual freedom to tempt college editors to compromise their standards; and the will and the clout to pressure both students and administrators. Yet once again, despite scattered successes, ADL has failed.

Furthermore, CODOH has lots more to offer now than it had several years ago, when running a single revisionist article, and a postal address offering more information, was the name of the game. Today there is CODOHweb, there is a much-praised video by a young Jewish American on Auschwitz, there is an eye-catching reward offer for showing that video—and a growing CODOH research component that generates findings against Holocaust consensus, in op-ed article form, regularly and convincingly. The circulation figures of the campus newspapers in which CODOH’s latest ads and opinion pieces ran, and the population figures of the campuses themselves, suggest that half a million readers saw them.

CODOH’s drive to bring Holocaust revisionism to the notice of university students and faculty made more news off campus. Attempts by the ADL, the Simon Wiesenthal Center and other advocates of intellectually endangered species status for the Holocaust story resulted in coverage, often lengthy, in regular and Jewish newspapers from New York to Houston (just those we’ve seen—since the last is sue of SR—have a combined circulation of about a million and a half).

While these stories did not favor Holocaust revisionism, or CODOH, their impact was far from entirely negative. The Cleveland Jewish News of November 14 wrote: “[CODOH’s] Website is elaborate and technically advanced” The November 27 Reporter Dispatch (White Plains, NY) quoted an abashed Rabbi Abraham Cooper, executive director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, regarding CODOH’s use of his “endorsement” of the Cole video (“[The] first-ever broadcast by a Holocaust [revisionist] from within the gates of Auschwitz”): “It shows the extent of their chutzpah.” If you say so, Rabbi.

The press stories were not without their humor, usually unintentional. Consider the plight of Leo Shane III, editor-in-chief of the University’ of Delaware Review, who ran the reward offer, an op-ed by CODOH writer Martin Henry that suggested that “Perhaps historians and other scholars feel that acceptance of the gas chamber tales is a small price to pay for peace and quiet and tenure,” and an entirely independent cartoon lampooning Orthodox Jews. Despite the storm that raged through Delaware, both Shane and U Delaware President David Roselle defended the decision to run our ads. (Shane had a particularly difficult time that week as, in error, and on top of his other problems, he signed my name to Henry’s opinion piece.)

Not so at other campuses, however, which took on, in press reports, something of the aspect of a rodeo combined with a county fair, as ADL wardens or local politicos struggled to bulldog campus free speech on the Holocaust, while some college presidents strove to ride the bucking bronco of Holocaustomania, and others tried to milk furiously at every udder of the six million sacred cow.

One of these milkmen was Malcolm Gillis, president of Rice University, who felt compelled to tell the world—through an essay in the Houston Chronicle—that though he was unable to stop CODOH’s ad in the Rice Thresher, he was able to help see that the ad fee went to the Houston Holocaust Museum. Gillis went on to simper and whimper over the supposed pain of Rice students and faculty(!), “many of whom may never again perceive Rice as quite the nurturing, tolerant university community....” You get the picture: the university as Mr. Rogers’s neighborhood, with its president’s chief role to kiss away emotional boo-boos arising from confronting unwelcome ideas. The president of the State University of New York at New Paltz, Roger Bowen, is in double Dutch because not only did his university’s paper, The Oracle, run CODOH’s reward ad November 6, but SUNY New Paltz was also the site of a controversial “women’s” conference that included advice on safe sadomasochism, simulated sex acts on stage and other sorts of stuff that was daring about thirty years ago.

Two New York state legislators, Assemblymen Thomas Kirwan and Rich Guerin, are using CODOH’s Holocaust ad as a way to get at Bowen for tolerating the kinky sex seminar. Meanwhile, The Jewish Press (Brooklyn, NY) reports that State Senator Seymour Lachman wants to pressure New York state campuses to refuse revisionist ads. As for SUNY New Paltz President Bowen? He’s angry because his university’s paper, The Oracle, wouldn’t even print his letter decrying CODOH’s ad—a letter in which he urged students who need proof of the Holocaust “to read any book written by Elie Wiesel.”

The circus-like, saturnalian atmosphere each CODOH Campus Project evokes, in which our academic and political leaders disport themselves like buffoons or lunatics in the face of reasoned, documented revisionist arguments, should not distract the friends of intellectual freedom from the very real threats it faces.

The Anti-Defamation League and its allies (and competitors) in the Holocaust lobby were able to block the placement of too many of our ads and our op-eds at colleges and universities where it is important that they run. Aside from their activities against the Campus Project, ADL and other groups are targeting CODOHWeb-the chief “product” of the Campus Project (and where revisionist documents have been accessed upwards of four hundred thousand times[!] since its inception)-through marketing of computer software advertised as blocking obscenity, that will just incidentally screen out revisionism as well (see Internet Roundup, this issue).

More ominously, the Jewish Defense League has publicly threatened David Cole, writer and editor of our video on Auschwitz, David Cole Interviews Franciszek Piper. In an announcement posted to its Website <> [now removed, but archived by us here; ed.], the JDL calls the young Jewish revisionist “a dangerous parasitic, disease-ridden bacteria [sic],” “more evil than Streicher and Goebbels ...because he is a Jew.” The statement, signed by one Robert J. Newman, says that Cole “does not deserve to live” and states that “...we must get rid of this monster.” It ends with a “monetary reward” (amount unstated) offered for the “correct address” of “Holocaust denier David Cole.”

The JDL’s rage and crude threat has obviously been prompted by the prominence of David Cole’s Auschwitz video in CODOH’s reward offer and our success in running the ad. Cole takes this move by the JDL, with its history of terrorist acts, very seriously, as do we. Yet JDL head Irv Rubin has now played his trump card. If anyone, no matter who, initiates or participates in an act of violence against David, or what might be worse, one of his family, the responsibility for it will clearly lead right back to Rubin and his Jewish Defense League. Rubin, in effect, with what can be called a kind of spiritual stupidity, has made himself his own hostage.

In the belief that the light and fresh air of public exposure is the best way to deal with this type of intimidation, a rule I have always followed for myself, we have sent the full text of the JDL’s threat, together with a cover letter to the editor and editorial staff, to four hundred important college and university newspapers. We will continue to make the $50,000 Offer, secure in the knowledge that we are doing something that enrages the people it should enrage, confounds those it should confound, and encourages the great middle to see that open debate in a free society is still a possibility.

We who have been involved in the long, costly, and difficult struggle to bring revisionist theory to the broad American public have no illusions about how far we still have to go. Today, nevertheless, after eight years of the Campus Project, it begins to look as if we’ve won the first battle—for public recognition. Everybody in America knows that there is a determined opposition to the orthodox version of the Jewish Holocaust story, and large numbers of people know, at the very least, that that determined opposition—you, dear readers, we at CODOH, and our revisionist friends around the world—has some very sophisticated arguments on its side.

The battle to spread the word that there are intelligent people who challenge the Holocaust story continues as a chief task of CODOH. Increasingly, however, for us the focus of the battle is shifting, as it must shift, from publicizing our dissent to overthrowing the Holocaust story as history. What that means, as 1998 unfolds, is a continued focus on media and on the campuses—coupled with an intensifying attack on high-profile Holocaust cult targets with research and publicity materials generated, in-house, by CODOH’s growing team of scholars and writers. Student editors, college presidents, politicians, Holocaust lobbyists: Buckle up! It’s going to be a busy year.

Additional information about this document
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Author(s): Bradley R. Smith
Title: CODOH'S $50,000 Offer Keeps Making Waves on Campus and off
Sources: Smith's Report, no. 50, January 1998, pp. 1, 3f.
Published: 1998-01-01
First posted on CODOH: July 8, 2012, 7 p.m.
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