The College Press

Published: 1995-03-01

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U. The National College Magazine, February 1995

He’s Ad It Again

When then-production editor Brian McBrearity walked into Boston College’s student newspaper offices one day in December 1993, he had no idea of the trouble waiting.

That morning, The Heights had run a paid advertisement from the Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust. In the ad, the committee’s director, Bradley R. Smith, questioned the facts of the Holocaust—specifically whether gas chambers were used in Hitler’s plan to exterminate the Jews of Europe.

'U.' National College Magazine, Feb 1995: 'He's Ad It Again'

Outrage over the ad was overwhelming. The Heights later ran an editorial stating its neutrality and its regret for any hurt feelings, only to have thousands of copies of the paper stolen and stacked in the shape of a swastika.

By Smith’s estimation, about 60 college newspapers have run his ads since 1991. Controversy and massive news coverage have followed nearly all of them. But this year, editors like McBrearity will be taken off the hot seat. In November, Smith sent free videos to 500 college newspapers that had not received any of his ads or articles. His mission? To get more press through reviews of the video.

In the one-hour documentary, Smith’s partner David Cole tours the Nazi concentration camp at Auschwitz. He interviews Franciszek Piper, the senior curator and head of archives at Auschwitz and its museums, and asks viewers to question the facts of World War II.

“As you can see,” Cole narrates, “the Holocaust experts prove themselves hypocrites when they tell you there is no need to question the Holocaust story, that it has already been proven.”

In fall 1994, Smith told U. Magazine he questions the use of gas chambers so that the “holes in the Holocaust story” will be eliminated. Smith says that will force Jews to find other arguments to combat neo-Nazi and anti-Semitic attacks on their beliefs.

Michael Berenbaum, director of exhibits at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, dismisses Smith’s claims. “Gas chambers were used, and the evidence is absolutely overwhelming,” he says. “So far, I haven’t discovered that anti-Semites and neo-Nazis need reason to attack the Jews.”

Only time will tell how editors will react to Smith’s video, which he recently made available for purchase—McBrearity says its message would have to be pretty convincing. “I would definitely have second thoughts about running an ad [like that] again.”

—Dan Stockman, Western Herald, Western Michigan U.

U. The National College Magazine ran the above article on the Campus Project in its February issue. U. Magazine is a color tabloid that is inserted in college newspapers nationwide. It has a guaranteed circulation of 1.5 million and a total readership of 6.5 million.

The words reproduced over my photo, which I suppose will not come out when this newsletter is printed, contain the title of one of my advertisements, followed by the text of the first paragraph of the ad:

“A REVISIONIST CHALLENGE TO THE U.S. HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL MUSEUM:

“This ad does not claim 'the Holocaust never happened.’ Those who say it does want to muddy the issue. This is what the ad does claim: The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum displays no convincing proof whatever of homicidal gassing chambers, and no proof that even one individual was 'gassed' in a German program of 'genocide.'
“The question, then, is not, 'Did the Holocaust happen?’ The question is: If there were no gas chambers, what was the Holocaust?”

The short article itself contains a goofy quote of something I find it difficult to believe I actually said—what does forcing Jews “to find other arguments to combat neo-Nazi and anti-Semitic attacks”—what does it even mean? I don’t believe I said it.

On balance, even with the garbled quote, I like the idea that more than six million (heh, heh) students and others on American campuses had the opportunity to read the two paragraphs to the left.

Michael Berenbaum, the authority quoted in response to my garbled quote, is director of exhibits at the Holocaust Museum in Washington and the man responsible for exhibiting a misleading plastic reproduction of a door from the Majadanek “gassing chamber.”

Spiegelmaus and His World

Spiegelmaus and His World / No Gas Chambers.

The Daily Student at Indiana University (Bloomington) ran an article on The Project in early January. I haven't seen it. Communications professors at Georgetown (MD), Ball State U. (IN) Glassboro State (NJ), and LSU (LA) are doing special projects on The Campus Project.

A writer for Editor and Publisher, the national trade magazine, has faxed me an article written on The Project in the 15 January 94 issue that I hadn't seen. It focuses on the Brandeis affair after the CODOH ad was run there in The Justice. The story ends with the following quote:

“Smith, when asked about the issue, only repeatedly insisted, 'Not one journalist has had the good sense to question the gas chamber exhibit at the museum. You would do well to ring them up and ask which exhibit displays proof of the gas chambers' existence.'“

Now there’s a quote I can believe I gave. Nevertheless, this simple idea has yet to come to fruition in the mind of one reporter.


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Author(s): Bradley R. Smith
Title: The College Press
Sources: Smith's Report, no. 21, March 1995, p. 5
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Published: 1995-03-01
First posted on CODOH: Sept. 16, 2015, 1:15 p.m.
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