Germar Rudolf: Victim of Witchhunt for Scientists in Germany

Now: Human Rights for Germans too! – Press Release
Published: 2005-01-12

We demand: §19 of UN Charter of Human Rights (human right of free speech) must be valid for German Scientists too!

We demand: §6 Sec. 3 of European Human Rights Convention (right to have one's own case fairly presented) must be valid for German Scientists too!

This flyer, further info and publications from: [address no longer valid; ed.]

Since 1993, academically accredited chemist Germar Scheerer, born Rudolf, father of two small children, has been dragged from one criminal trial to the next. In six concurrent trials for scientific publications on controversial topics of contemporary history, efforts are geared to silence him by locking him away behind bars for many years.

All this began when the young chemist wrote a report in which he concluded that the mass murders attested to for the Auschwitz concentration camp were irreconcilable with the laws of nature as well as technically impossible. Subsequently, Rudolf recently took a leading part in the publication of several books and brochures, and has published articles in support of similar theses.

Without commenting on the question of whether the views expressed in the scientific publications are correct, we believe Rudolf has the right to express his scientific opinion as guaranteed by Article 19 of the UN Charter of Human Rights. As the German Federal President Herzog recently stated on the occasion of the presentation of an award to a scientist who had come under attack:

"When we enter into a discussion with someone, we bring with us certain essentials which are not subject to negotiation. Freedom of speech is one of these, as well as particularly the principle that no-one may be brought to harm for his opinion. The long and frequently bloody and cruel course of history has taught us here in Europe that these rights must never again be subject to compromise." (FAZ, October 16, 1995)

In the view of one of the world's leading authorities on inorganic chemistry, Professor von Schnering, Rudolf's report must be granted protection under the principles of academic freedom (Nature No. 368/1994, p. 484).

In May 1996, one hundred of Germany's leading personalities, among them many college and universitiy professors, demanded the protection of academic freedom for the book edited by Rudolf, Grundlagen zur Zeitgeschichte (FAZ, May 17, 1996). Two leading historians even affirmed in court expert reports that this work absolutely must be safeguarded by the principles of academic freedom (Amtsgericht [Country Court] Tübingen, Ref. 4 Gs 173/95). Nonetheless, Judge Burckhardt Stein of the Amtsgericht Tübingen decided on May 7, 1996 that Rudolf has to be arrested without delay for his part in this publication. Finally, on June 15, 1996, the judge ruled that all copies of Grundlagen zur Zeitgeschichte must be burned.

In the summer of last year, 20 persons affiliated with Italian universities, among them 16 professors, spoke out in favour of academic freedom for Germar Rudolf and his scientific colleagues (La Lente di Marx, 6/1995).

None of this stopped the Judges of the 17th Criminal Division of the Stuttgart Landgericht [District Court], chaired by Dr. Dietmar Mayer, from convicting Germar Rudolf for his scientific report. The Judges substantiated their decision by saying that while the report "does not openly accuse the Jews of having invented the accounts of the Holocaust in order to secure political and material advantage", the purpose of the report, "in the view of the Court Division, is to suggest this and thereby to stir up hostile emotions towards the Jews." (Verdict, Ref. 17 KLs 83/94, p. 115)

One should bear in mind that no accusations against Jews are expressed in the report, nor are they hinted at in any way. It was strictly the scientifically documented opinion that something is wrong with the established view of history that sufficed for the Judges to sentence Rudolf to 14 month's imprisonment without probation.

Rudolf's motion to obtain expert evidence to determine whether his report was correct in terms of content was denied by the Court, since "the intended result" of such a motion to hear evidence amounted to "a denial of the mass murder of the Jews." Any such evidence is forbidden, since, according to the Court, "the mass murder of the Jews [...] is a self-evident historical fact which requires no proof". (Verdict, pp. 231f.)

The Court ignored the fact that the accused did not propose to prove the National Socialist murder of the Jews, but rather to partially refute it with new and powerful scientific evidence. The accused was thus prevented from bringing evidence for his innocence, which clearly constitutes a violation of §6 Section 3 of the European Human Rights Convention (the right to have one's own case fairly presented in a trial).

In the course of this trial, and as a consequence of the verdict, the incitement spread by the media caused Rudolf's rent agreement to be terminated – twice, in each case at a time when his wife was well along in pregnancy. He repeatedly lost jobs, and the University of Stuttgart successfully denied him his PhD examination. For years now the media has slandered Rudolf as a rightwing radical even though he has never belonged to or even been in contact with any organization deemed to be right-wing extremist. Furthermore, five other criminal proceedings for alleged "abuse of academic freedom" threaten further long term of imprisonment for Rudolf.

We appeal to all the democratic governments of the World, to all human rights organizations, to the Churches and to all persons with democratic convictions, to exert moral pressure on Germany to restore the human rights of its citizens.

Direct your protest against this arbitrary form of German judicial practice to one or more of the following:

  • Bundeskanzler, Adenauerallee 141, D-53113 Bonn;
  • Bundesjustizminister, Heinemannstr. 6, D-53175 Bonn;
  • Human Rights Watch, 15 Rue Van Campenhout, B-1040 Brüssel;
  • Amnesty International, Hausdorffstr. 160, D-53129 Bonn;
  • UNO – Centre for Human Rights, Palais des Nations, CH-1211 Genf 10.

Additional information about this document
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Author(s): Patricia Willms
Title: Germar Rudolf: Victim of Witchhunt for Scientists in Germany, Now: Human Rights for Germans too! – Press Release
Published: 2005-01-12
First posted on CODOH: Dec. 30, 2005, 6 p.m.
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