Museum director upset by ad disputing Holocaust
HOUSTON — A Holocaust museum has rejected the donation of an advertising fee from Rice University's student newspaper after it printed an ad from a group that doubts the Holocaust occurred. "This money is tainted and its purpose is to deny the murder of millions of human beings, Jews and non-Jews alike, and aims to deny Holocaust survivors the opportunity to bear witness for those who cannot speak for themselves," said Abraham J. Peck, executive director of Holocaust Museum Houston.
Rice University President Malcolm Gillis said the newspaper, The Rice Thresher, apologized for running the ad and offered to donate the entire $130 advertising fee to the museum.
The ad appeared in the newspaper's Nov. 21 issue. The newspaper said the ad was purchased by the Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust.
The ad offered $50,000 to anyone who could secure a national, prime-time television showing of a film skeptical of "gas chamber stories."
The group claims that stories of Nazi death factories were fabricated to "drum up support for Jewish causes."
The group has sent different ads to student newspapers across the country, including the University of Texas at Austin, Harvard, Wisconsin, Yale, Cornell, Michigan and Brown.
Editors of the Rice newspaper said they published the ad as a regular business transaction with no harm intended. They followed with an editorial apologizing for offending anyone.
Gillis, writing in an opinion piece in Tuesday's Houston Chronicle, called the group behind the ads the "direct intellectual descendants of (Nazi propagandist) Joseph Goebbels," whom he described as "history's most accomplished practitioner of the `big lie.'"
"Those who would deny the Holocaust ever happened have a right to express their views, poisonous as they may be," Gillis wrote. "But let there be no doubt that what they assert is completely without merit. Of this there can be no reasonable doubt."
Gillis said Wednesday he understands why the museum has rejected the donation.
"In their place, I certainly would've done it too," he said.
The group that placed the ad is connected to the Institute for Historical Review in Costa Mesa, Calif.
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|Title:||Museum director upset by ad disputing Holocaust // Holocaust museum - rejects Rice newspaper's donation of advertising fee|
|Summary:||HOUSTON — A Holocaust museum has rejected the donation of an advertising fee from Rice University's student newspaper after it printed an ad from a group that doubts the Holocaust occurred. "This money is tainted and its purpose is to deny the murder of millions of human beings, Jews and non-Jews alike, and aims to deny Holocaust survivors the opportunity to bear witness for those who cannot speak for themselves," said Abraham J. Peck, executive director of Holocaust Museum Houston.|
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Additional information about this document
|Author(s):||Austin American-Statesman, 18. Dec. 1997|
|Title:||Museum director upset by ad disputing Holocaust, Holocaust museum rejects Rice newspaper's donation of advertising fee|
|Sources:||Austin American-Statesman, 18. Dec. 1997|
|First posted on CODOH:||Dec. 16, 1997, 6 p.m.|