Robert Faurisson, 1929 – 2018
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For the occasion of Robert Faurisson’s 75th birthday, in 2004, I wrote a little piece (https://codoh.com/library/document/1643/) assessing his revisionist career. Now I must write his eulogy, but that 2004 piece can be considered part of this eulogy. There is nothing there to retract, leaving aside one objection he raised (message to me of Feb. 5, 2004: He had in fact published a little monograph I had forgotten, namely Mémoire en défense contre ceux qui m’accusent de falsifier l’histoire, 1980, with a foreword by Noam Chomsky).
Also, I should note that, while the sole formal author of the 1980 book Vérité Historique ou Vérité Politique? was Serge Thion, it would be more realistic to consider Faurisson at least co-author. The book presented Faurisson’s analysis of The Diary of Anne Frank, by Otto Frank.
My earlier concern that his work has not been adequately expressed or summarized remains. He left us with the situation largely unchanged in that respect, but it may now be possible to create a summary of his work that will satisfy us, though not Robert, wherever he is.
Let me explain.
Revisionists are difficult people. Their characters are necessarily individualistic and they are the last to agree on anything for the sake of harmony. Flipping through a dictionary, I wondered if I should describe Robert as not being a “concordant” person, but I kept thinking only an idiom would do: he was “not a team player”. It is not difficult to see why it is inevitable that revisionists are temperamentally difficult. We must accept them on these terms; otherwise, we would not have them. A compliant or agreeable revisionist is no more possible than a married bachelor.
I am proud to say I share some of those features, and I realized very early that any significant joint project with Robert, such as coauthoring an article, was out of the question. The little bit of friction I had with him, over the more than forty-two years of our relationship, was handled in brief private communications, but I know of cases of sincere comrades trying close cooperation with explosive results, creating significant periods of actual hostility, and provoking the lash of Robert’s words.
Now that he has gone where we are all headed, publication of a summary or condensation of his work, written by a very able revisionist, may be possible.
Robert’s passing will even be furtively upsetting to his enemies, as he played a role in France unlike anything we know in the USA. Everybody knew who Robert Faurisson was (Marine Le Pen called the 1990 Fabius-Gayssot law the “loi Faurisson” – RF mail of 2/27/18), because he was Goldstein for the media hyenas and pseudo-intellectual poseurs. On 23 August 2012, I wrote Germar Rudolf and others in connection with an article published by Ariane Chemin in Le Monde, and which Faurisson challenged in court (of course he eventually lost the case in June 2017 and appealed, unsuccessfuly, in February 2018). I noted
“RF is their Goldstein. They would be lost if he were to pass from the scene.”
I once read an account of a meeting in Paris during which, it seemed to me, each speaker tried to outdo the others in denouncing Robert, thereby reminding me of Orwell’s “two minutes hate.” I could easily imagine a participant heaving a volume of the Grand Larousse (The dictionary has 7 volumes; the encyclopedia has 10 volumes) at a TV screen depicting Robert-as-Goldstein on horseback, at the head of a column of Nazi soldiers passing through the Arc de Triomphe. In fact, I could even imagine each speaker given his own volume to heave.
Given those considerations, consider an article that appeared in Le Monde on 8 February 2018, about Faurisson’s appeal against the Ariane Chemin article, entitled “The final battle [L’ultime bataille] of the Holocaust denier Robert Faurisson.” Early in the story, it was noted Faurisson was 89. I could not help but interpret this story as expressing, among other things, both glee and regret that this Goldstein would soon be gone. To paraphrase a recent US president, they won’t have Robert Faurisson to kick around anymore.
It will take time for his departure to sink in. Then there will be an awful void for many American revisionists; it could seem France no longer exists. On the other hand, it may now be possible for an able revisionist to attempt to summarize his work, but that person should be forewarned: an angry voice may come down from the clouds booming “Idiot! You have not understood at all!”
Arthur R. Butz, 22 October 2018
Additional information about this document
|Author(s):||Arthur R. Butz|
|Title:||Robert Faurisson, 1929 – 2018|
|Sources:||Inconvenient History, Vol. 10, No. 3 (2018)|
|First posted on CODOH:||Oct. 23, 2018, 4:07 a.m.|