by Frank Miele
Skeptic vol. 2, no. 4, 1994, pp. 58-70
Frank Miele grew up in a “mob” town in New Jersey. His current
incarnation is as a free-lance writer and musician living in the San
Francisco Bay Area. His principal interest is applying Occam’s Razor
and Hume’s Fork to the study of evolutionary biology, political
ideology, and religious philosophy, especially extremist positions as
The present article, “Giving the Devil His Due,”
developed from a letter to the editor he submitted in response to
Michael Shermer’s editorial asking if Skeptics should look into
Holocaust revisionism ("Skeptic" Vol. 2 No. 2).
The author wishes to
thank Vora Shamelis and Pat Carri for editorial and research
assistance, and the reference librarians of the South Bay Cooperative
Library System who, despite budget cuts, answered questions and
provided materials without which this article could not have been
The exchange between Sir Thomas More, stalwart of due process in Robert
Bolt’s play "A Man for All Seasons," and the younger and zealous Roper,
epitomizes the argument advocates of open inquiry have presented in many
lands at many times (Act 1, Scene 6):
Roper: So now you’d give the Devil benefit of law.
More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to
get after the Devil?
Roper: I’d cut down every law in England to do that.
More: Oh? And when the last law was down—and the Devil turned
round on you—where would you hide? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law,
for my own safety’s sake.
The revisionist assertion that the Holocaust (the Nazi persecution of
European Jewry culminating in the intentional mass genocide of five to six
million) is a snare and a delusion foisted upon the rest of society by
powerful Zionist Jews is generated by only a handful of scholars and
propagandists at a few fringe organizations.
Despite fears and claims to the
contrary, it is taken seriously by only a small percentage of the American
(I use the term “revisionist” rather than “denier” because that
is the term these individuals use; just as newspapers use “Pro-Choice” and
“Pro-Life.” Likewise, I do not use the term “exterminationist,” by which the
revisionists often designate their opponents.)
According to the most recent
Gallup poll on the subject, when asked directly,
“Do you doubt that the
Holocaust actually happened or not?” only 9% said yes and 4% said they were
unsure (Morin, 1994).
The Gallup organization explained the discrepancy
between the low level of support for Holocaust revisionism found in their
poll and the much higher level (22% doubters; 12% unsure) in the Roper poll
commissioned by the American Jewish Committee, as resulting from the
different wording, especially the use of a double negative in the Roper
Denying or even doubting the Holocaust has the same effect on Jews (and
others) as would burning an American flag in front of a VA hospital filled
with disabled war veterans. To many, it’s yelling “liar!” at a crowded gas
chamber. And in countries other than the U.S., it’s a criminal offense for
which violators can do hard time in the slammer.
Should skeptics take the claims of Holocaust revisionists seriously or
simply write them off as yet another product of the lunatic fringe?
the claims of the Holocaust revisionists have any historical merit?
Michael Shermer in a recent issue of Skeptic, in the process of identifying
the concept of pseudo-history, the fraternal twin of pseudoscience (Shermer,
1993). Shermer’s essay in this issue provides a detailed analysis of these
questions. Tom McIver’s article specifically compares revisionism with
creationism and argues that they share underlying racist assumptions.
shall examine is how Holocaust revisionism provides a useful test case for
the skeptical ethic, our views on freedom of inquiry and expression,
academic freedom and responsibility, and the extent to which the “received
version” of history is enforced as an article of faith, to be questioned
only at the loss of one’s reputation, job, or even personal freedom.
The Russian language émigré newspaper, Russkaia Mysl (“La Pensee Russe”),
once described how in the former Soviet Union what began as a criminal
charge became just another part of the day to day operation of government:
“Censorship, which began as a judicial term, became an administrative one.”
In the United States, the First Amendment protects the right of every
citizen to question the very existence of the Holocaust (or of Pearl Harbor,
the moon walk, the death of Elvis, or anything else for that matter).
According to FBI Director Louis Freeh,
“no matter how despicable, it’s
protected by the 1st Amendment.”
(Shanker, 1993, p.72)
That is not the case elsewhere in the world. In Canada, anti-hate and
pornography statutes and the law against spreading “false news” have been
used against Holocaust revisionists. In France it is illegal to contest the
existence of any of the crimes against humanity as defined by the Nuremberg
Military Tribunal. In Germany it is against the law to “defame the memory of
Similar laws are on the books in Austria, Switzerland, Belgium,
Italy, Sweden and Israel.
Mark Weber, editor of the Journal of Historical Review (the official organ
of revisionists) is presently compiling a detailed list of anti-revisionist
laws and criminal prosecutions. He, along with Zundel, Irving, and Faurisson,
supplied me with information on these laws (as well as considerably more
material despite being told in advance that the resulting essay could be
critical of their positions).
No one disputes the existence of these laws.
Indeed, the most prominent critics of the claims of Holocaust revisionists,
Deborah Lipstadt, Pierre Vidal-Naquet, and Michael Shermer, have publicly
stated they oppose laws that criminalize revisionism. (Lipstadt, 1993, p.17;
Vidal-Naquet, 1992, pp. 71-71; Shermer, 1994, p. 14).
This can be an especially difficult philosophy to live by, with the most
extreme proponents of Holocaust revisionism—those who have not-so-hidden
anti-Semitic agendas. A classic example is Francis Parker Yockey’s
The Philosophy of History and Politics, written under the
Irish-Viking-Russian nom-de-plume of Ulick Varange and dedicated to Adolf
Yockey, who originally worked for the War Crimes Tribunal, but then
quit, was one of the earliest Holocaust revisionists. Imperium was
republished by Noontide Press, the publishing arm of IHR.
The 1992 IHR
catalogue describes Imperium as,
“a sweeping historico-philosophical
treatise in the Spenglerian mold and a clarion call to arms in defense of
Europe and the West.” This “prophetic masterwork brought its author a
martyr’s death” (p. 11).
According to Lipstadt (p.147), Yockey had a history
of paranoid behavior and committed suicide by taking a cyanide capsule while
in prison on a passport violation.
Darwinian evolution amounts
to the “materialistic animalization of Culture-man.” Species, he tells us,
do NOT evolve. They arise spontaneously and disappear just as magically.
Needless to say, “parasites” (that is, Jews, Negroes, and Communists) come
off even worse in his view than does Darwin (McIver, 1988, Entry #1829a).
In Yockey’s league is the self-described former Marxist (now unclassifiable
political extremist) Lyndon LaRouche, and his wife Helga Zepp LaRouche. Her
Hitler Book argues along the lines of creation scientists that
the origin of Hitlerism, both of which the LaRouches despise (McIver entry
In addition to having revealed the Queen of England as the Godmother
of the International Drug Trade, LaRouche and his followers have resolved
the wave-particle duality, uncovered a 3,000-year old conspiracy against
humanity, discovered the critical error in the thinking of “capitalist
reformer” Karl Marx, rendered all previously existing economic systems
meaningless, and conceived the strategic defense initiative (LaRouche,
1979a, 1979b, 1980, 1983).
Amidst all these claims, the LaRouches have also
dismissed the Holocaust as “mythical” and “a swindle” (King, 1989, p.138).
Conspiracy theories interpret history as governed by “demonic forces of
almost transcendent power.” They have a long history in the United States
and are equally at home among both right- and left-wingers (Hofstadter,
1965, p. 29).
Among those fingered as the evil ones:
Not all Holocaust revisionists are conspiracy theorists.
Mark Weber, in
fact, is redirecting the IHR away from both conspiratorial thinking and
overt anti-Semitic leanings, in an effort to lead the movement into the
mainstream of historical scholarship. In this process they must also
distance themselves from some of the more extreme revisionists.
known cases of prosecution of Holocaust revisionists reveal a lot about both
the social movement of revisionism and the unwillingness of some countries
to grant them the freedom to revise certain histories.
Ernst Zundel -
Playing With Fire
A Canadian resident but German citizen, Ernst Zundel is the most outspoken
and visible advocate of Holocaust revisionism. He is, interestingly
(especially for skeptics) also the author of "UFO’s:
Nazi Secret Weapons?", which has sold out seven underground printings.
book argued that what are usually described as flying saucers from outer
space are actually Nazi secret weapons, still being launched from a hole in
the ice in Antarctica. This may be why he jokingly told me in an early phone
conversation to realize that I was dealing with the “real lunatic fringe.”
In a later phone conversation, Zundel told me that the UFO book was in fact
“I realized that North Americans were not interested in being
educated. They want to be entertained. The book was for fun. With a picture
of the Fuhrer on the cover and flying saucers coming out of Antarctica it
was a chance to get on radio and TV talk shows.
For about 15 minutes of an
hour program I’d talk about that esoteric stuff. Then I would start talking
about all those Jewish scientists in concentration camps, working on these
secret weapons. And that was my chance to talk about what I wanted to talk
“In that case,” I asked him, “do you still stand by what you wrote in the
UFO book?” I asked. “Look,” he replied, “it has a question mark at the end
of the title.”
While some Holocaust revisionists operate quietly and seek outlets in
academic or academic-like journals, Zundel unleashes an avalanche of
newsletters, audio cassettes, stickers, radio and TV broadcasts.
volume of his output would be the envy of any political campaign manager or
television evangelist. His tone, however, in person, phone conversations,
audio cassettes (which open with a trumpet fanfare that sounds like a 40’s Movietone newsreel) is almost always calm and didactic.
During a recent visit to German-American friends in the San Francisco Bay
Area, Zundel surprised me with a phone call and invited me over for a
lengthy and wide ranging discussion and interview. The word “Zundel,” I
found out, comes from the same root as “zundeln”—to play with fire.
word, he explained, can have the connotation of either a spark plug (that
which ignites something for a desired purpose) or someone running
irresponsibly through the haystacks.
“A Jewish woman psychic told me that in
my previous incarnation [he meant it figuratively] at a convention where I
was peddling my UFO book that this was a very powerful name. Something that
can spark a revolution. Like ‘Iskra’”.
(in Russian, “the spark,” the title of
one of Lenin’s journals)
Zundel was born in Germany in 1939, and his earliest memories while growing
up in a small village in the Black Forest are of the sound of the Allied
bombing raids and of waking up frightened, cold and shivering, even in
Zundel said he has no memories whatsoever of Jews from his days in
Germany. He did not meet his first Jew until he was 19 years old and living
in Canada. There he met and married a French Canadian girl and became a
successful commercial artist, specializing in photo retouching, (which he
found to be a most profitable line of work).
He paints in a style he likens
to that of Andrew Wyeth, and has sold over 700 paintings to buyers around
the world, 80% of whom he estimates were Jews, a fact he apparently thinks
is important for us to know.
When discussing his work as a commercial artist, Zundel told me that he had
never employed a salesman, but acted as his own salesman and used lunches
and dinners to combine business with pleasure. I have worked with a fair
number of salesmen over the years and Zundel is as good as any I have met.
His introduction is pleasant and filled with stories and self-deprecating
He quickly reverses himself in order to agree with his interlocutor
on anything that is not critical to his “game plan”.
Without making a written
note, he remembers any points that seem either to test the credulity or win
support of his interviewer and at convenient breaks produces supporting
documentation from his “briefing book” (a huge three-ring binder, similar to
a salesman’s pitch-book). And he has his pitch down cold. I feel sorry for
any opponent who goes up against Zundel unprepared.
Zundel will dangle a reference to UFO’s or the wisdom of the ancient Atlanteans. If it has no effect, he just moves on. If it elicits skepticism,
he blows it off with a jovial “for whatever it’s worth.”
Given our early
conversation on the UFO book, I’m still not sure whether Zundel really
believes any of this esoteric stuff or whether he’s just learned how
effective pushing hot buttons is in grabbing the media spotlight and perhaps
bringing in donations.
“It’s a lot like operating a church” he explained. “We survive on
He has, in fact, survived well enough to provide for his own
defense, assist others in the preparation of theirs, conduct a research
project to determine who was really behind the U.S. internment of
Japanese-Americans during World War II, and is currently going to send a
multilingual team to Europe to investigate and interview the “enigmatic
revisionist” and noted Russian ultranationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky.
It is as a Holocaust revisionist that Zundel has become incendiary.
In 1983, Sabrina Citron, a Holocaust survivor and founder of the
Remembrance Association, placed a private complaint against Zundel. Zundel
claims that Citron was a loose cannon and that her action was based upon the
desire to raise her profile and status in the Canadian Jewish community and
that most members considered her action counterproductive.
that “most Canadian Jewish organizations did not support her decision”
In 1984, the Canadian government initiated criminal proceedings against
Zundel based on Citron’s complaint.
Specifically, Zundel was charged under
section 177 (the false news section) of the Criminal Code of Canada which
“every one who willfully publishes a statement, tale or news
that he knows is false and that causes or is likely to cause injury or
mischief to a public interest is guilty of an indictable offence and liable
to imprisonment for a term of not exceeding two years”
Zundel’s actionable behavior was publishing (not writing) two books:
The trial, during which he appeared in court wearing the now familiar Zundel
garb of a bullet-proof vest and a hardhat bearing the motto, “Freedom of
Speech” in both English and German, took place in 1985. Zundel was acquitted
of the false news charge for "The West, War, and Islam", but convicted for
Did Six Million Really Die?
He was sentenced to 15 months in jail. That
conviction was subsequently overturned on appeal and a new trial ordered.
The second trial became a revisionist media event in which Zundel’s lawyer
largely succeeded in putting the Holocaust, rather than his client, on
trial. Zundel was able to call leading revisionists Faurisson, Leuchter,
Irving, Weber and others as expert witnesses.
Zundel’s company, Samisdat
Publishers (1993) has printed a 566-page summary of the testimony presented
in that trial. (“Samisdat” is derived from the Russian word for
“self-publication” the way all works, fact and fiction, had to be published
unless they were “officially approved” in the former Soviet Union.)
Zundel was again convicted, but the case worked its way up to the Canadian
Supreme Court, which struck down the publishing false news statute as an
unconstitutional violation of free speech ("B’nai B’rith Covenant", 1993, p.
Thus Ernst Zundel, self-described admirer of der Fuhrer, became a civil
libertarian hero of Canada.
Zundel is not, however, home free, as some Canadian Jewish groups have
initiated further action against him under the anti-hate provisions of
Canadian law. The German ambassador to Canada, Dr. Guenther Sulimma, joined
with them when he told a
B’nai B’rith luncheon in Canada that he would
formally ask the Canadian government to do what it could to stop Zundel from
publishing Holocaust revisionist materials ("B’nai B’rith Covenant", p. 7).
Zundel has retaliated by filing his own anti-hate suit against various
Canadian Jewish groups, citing the statement by Elie Wiesel in his book,
Legends of Our Time:
“Every Jew, somewhere in his being, should set apart a
zone of hate —healthy, virile hate— for what the German personifies and for
what persists in the German.”
("Journal of Historical Review", 1993b, p.
To date no action has been taken by the Canadian authorities.
“game plan,” as he calls it, is to “first, bring down Jewish
suffering in terms of numbers and events, both real and imagined, to what it
really was, not what they say it was, what they exploit for their own
political, financial, and geopolitical purposes.”
When asked to be more
precise, he estimated total Jewish deaths from all causes under the Nazi
regime as only about 300,000.
His second goal is to make the world look at
German suffering and the Allied brutality toward Germany and realize that
both peoples were victims.
“Suppose,” I asked, “new evidence, either from the archives or from
scientific analysis, proves that you and the revisionists were really right
all along. What would change?”
“First,” he replied “all the numbers would go down. It would be a satisfying
personal victory to know that I was right; that I had been a trailblazer and
an iconoclast. History would be rewritten and corrected and I could get out
of this stuff and get back to my life.”
“What about aid to Israel?”
“I would cut it off immediately,” he stated, as his voice shifted
from its usual avuncular tone to the more strident one he calls “the
eloquence of emergency.”
Israel, he says, is “a parasitic enterprise and
they don’t deserve it. It wouldn’t happen if it weren’t for the Holocaust.
The Jews will have to give back the money to the Germans or to the
Palestinians and make restitution to the Germans. They must apologize
verbally and then financially. They got the money illegitimately. It must be
turned over to legitimate causes.”
“Why go back in time?” I asked. “Why not just wipe the slate clean?”
In an even more strident tone he replied, “Why should we let
parasites and liars live with their loot? They took it from Egypt (a
reference to the Old Testament Exodus). They’re not going to take it
from the Germans.”
“Those are awfully strong words,” I said, offering him a chance to take them
back were he to feel they were spoken in a moment of anger.
“They are strong words. After what I’ve suffered, the price I’ve paid, I
have the right to use strong words.”
I gave him yet another chance. “You’re comfortable being quoted on that?”
Holocaust has become an enterprise based on falsehoods and
lies and they are promoting it criminally.”
I asked Zundel what might have happened if in 1917, when both sides had been
putting out peace feelers, all sides had gone back to the pre-World War I
borders and there had been no Treaty of Versailles. He replied that it was
the Treaty of Versailles that created Hitler. The Kaiser had offered to do
that, but there wasn’t peace in 1917 because the Jewish political and
financial interests manipulated the U.S. into the war.
Realizing that in Zundel’s view the Jews had a hand in everything, I granted
him that there was a Jewish lobby (or an Israeli lobby) and that it was
powerful. But how is what AIPAC does (the
American Israel Public Affairs
Committee) different, quantitatively or qualitatively from what the National
Rifle Association does?
Zundel replied that they were totally different. The NRA was made up of
Americans concerned about their Second Amendment Rights.
Zundel told me he
wasn’t envious of Jewish power; he was alarmed by it. Unlike the NRA or
other lobbying groups, the Jewish lobby, he said, works for a foreign power.
And at that moment Zundel’s conspiratorial mind opened up. He referred me to
Francis Parker Yockey’s book, Imperium, which shows how the Jews have
distorted and perverted the direction of Western culture. He informed me
that Jews lack what he called, “fingerspitzengefuhl,” which he translated
from the German as “the touch of the fingers.”
Throughout history this has
derailed Jewish enterprises. Since they didn’t listen to Moses, Zundel
doubted they’d listen to him. They were on the path to becoming intellectual Baruch Goldsteins (a reference to the American born Israeli West Bank
settler who recently gunned down defenseless Palestinians in a mosque).
I asked what the result of their not heeding him would be, Zundel told me
massive pogroms were ahead.
“Suppose the evidence proves you’re wrong. What will you then do?” I asked.
He replied “I’ll spend my last money issuing apologies and retire.”
When asked if he could think of any definitive experiment that could decide
the gas chamber issue one way or the other Zundel offered the macabre
suggestion that someone build a gas chamber according to what are alleged to
be the plans, get DEGESH to supply the gas, fill it with people, gas them
and see if they in fact died. Since the U.S. continues to execute people, we
could also save some money in conducting such an experiment.
Zundel’s Judeophobia is clear enough. His Germanophilia is no less potent.
In our conversation he waxed eloquent about all of Hitler’s accomplishments.
He believes that Europe is only now 50 years later arriving where Hitler
wanted it to be. Hitler, according to Zundel, evolved from being a German
ultranationalist, to a Pan German, to a European.
By the time the war ended, der Fuhrer had hit upon the idea of a “Europa ethnica,” in which each ethnic
group could live peacefully in its own little place. When I asked him if
this was not just so much propaganda to get Poles, Slovaks, and others to
fight and die to keep the Third Reich going just a little longer, Zundel
explained that I too was a victim of my limited American perspective.
Even if viewed from his perspective as a German ethnic activist, I queried,
was not Hitler more responsible than anyone for ruining Germany and making
Germans subservient to the Jews?
“No,” he stated. “That would be blaming the
victim! Hitler didn’t bomb the German cities. Hitler didn’t fire the German
university professors. Hitler didn’t... . “
All this started to sound a
little too much like Franz Liebkind in Mel Brooks’ The Producers:
was a better dancer than Churchill. Hitler was a better singer than
Churchill. Churchill couldn’t even say Nazi. He would say Naah-Zees, Bloody
In checking my notes before publication I called Zundel one more time, by
chance on April 2Oth, the 105th anniversary of the birth of Adolf Hitler.
complained that the Canadian authorities had detained him when he returned
and tried to seize his notes and briefing book. He told me he was
celebrating Hitler’s birthday “the way we Germans like to—by hard work!”
Robert Faurisson, a professor of literature at the University of Lyon 2, has
in a number of articles, argued that:
there never was a preconceived
German master plan to exterminate Jews
no gas chambers were ever in use
in the Third Reich or its territories for that purpose (those structures
being, in fact, delousing chambers, as is standard in POW camps and
that the conventionally accepted figure of six million
Jewish deaths (including those from disease and other “natural causes”) is
For making these statements, Faurisson was first dismissed from his academic
post on grounds that should send shivers down the spine of any civil
“...the authorities couldn’t protect him from his enemies”.
(Herman, 1993, p. 8)
He was in fact physically beaten rather severely by
anti-revisionists. Faurisson, his publishers, and supporters who have
distributed or promoted his materials have been tried, convicted, fined, and
barred from holding any government jobs ("Le Monde", 19 September 1983).
The convictions were under the Fabius-Gayssot law of 1990, largely written
with the express intent of criminalizing Faurisson’s revisionist activities,
which should also raise civil libertarian eyebrows.
That law makes it a
“to contest by any means the existence of one or more of
the crimes against humanity as defined by Article 6 of the Statutes of the
International Military Tribunal, attached to the London Agreement of August
8, 1945, committed either by the members of an organization declared
criminal in application of Article 9 of the same Statutes, or by a person
held guilty of such a crime by a French or international jurisdiction.”
Any meaningful appeal of those verdicts is therefore impossible under French
law. Faurisson and his supporters have been restricted in court from
mentioning “gas chambers” (ostensibly, the existence of which they were
convicted of questioning) and have been denied government jobs.
Le Choc du Mois (“The Shock of the Month”) had to cease operation because of the fines
it repeatedly incurred in publishing Faurisson’s work.
The Leuchter Protocol
For years, Fred Leuchter (who described himself as an “engineer,” though he
does not possess an engineering degree) made his living developing, selling,
and servicing execution devices. "The Execution Protocol: Inside America’s
Capital Punishment Industry" (Trombley, 1992), contains a sympathetic
portrait of Leuchter in his pre-revisionist days. Lipstadt (1993) offers a
scathing evaluation of Leuchter’s professional competence, even before his
venture into Holocaust revisionism.
Leuchter’s involvement with Holocaust revisionism began when Zundel called
him as an expert witness as to the existence of gas chambers in the Nazi
concentration camps. Zundel’s defense paid Leuchter $30,000 to perform an
analysis on samples from the chambers, which Leuchter obtained without the
knowledge or consent of the Polish authorities. This was strictly illegal.
According to the analysis performed by an independent laboratory on the
samples, Leuchter claimed, in the now famous “Leuchter Report,” (“An
Engineering Report on the Alleged Execution Chambers at Auschwitz, Birkenau,
and Majdanek, Poland”), no gassing could have taken place. (See Shermer’s
article for an analysis of this controversy).
The Leuchter Report became a
revisionist international best seller and Leuchter an overnight (and by his
account, reluctant) star of the movement. This produced a good deal of ill
feeling for Leuchter in certain circles.
In response, Serge and Beate Klarsfeld joined a local Massachusetts
survivors group and brought an action against Leuchter for practicing
engineering without a license. This statute had been previously untested (Trombley,
p. 88) and according to the figures supplied by Zundel, less than 20% of the
“engineers” practicing in Massachusetts are so licensed.
Like the Zundel
trials, the Leuchter trial became a media event.
Leuchter eventually signed a consent decree barring him from using the title
“engineer” (Trombley, p. 90). This was really academic. All of his contracts
with the various states have been terminated and, according to Zundel, some
states have reneged on outstanding invoices so that Leuchter has been left
holding the bag on some rather expensive equipment.
In the tape interview distributed by Zundel (1993), Leuchter (whose name in
German, Zundel tells his listeners, means “illuminator,” though “candelabra”
is the preferred translation) tells his lawyer Kirk Lyons, that his life is
a shambles and his business is ruined. Leuchter now exists on speaking fees
from sympathetic revisionist groups and working at odd jobs.
He receives no
royalties on the Leuchter report. (Leuchter did not return any of my
numerous phone calls.)
Leuchter gave a speech in Germany in 1991 based on the finding of his
report. He later returned to that country to appear as a guest on the
popular German TV program, Schreinemakers, to discuss capital punishment. He
was arrested in the TV studio before the program began on “suspicion he
would use the TV show to incite racism and to slander the memory of
Holocaust victims” ("Canada News", 1993, p. 12).
Initially held without bail, he was subsequently released and is now in the
United States. Gunther Deckert, head of the right-wing National Democratic
Party of Germany set up the Leuchter speech and served as translator. He was
arrested and charged with “defaming the dead” by translating and agreeing
with Leuchter’s arguments.
Leuchter’s lawyer, Hajo Herrmann, was also placed
under investigation, though not formally charged, for having repeated Leuchter’s
arguments during his client’s bail proceeding ("Kolner
Stadt-Anzeiger", 1993, p. 3).
In March of 1994, the German Federal Court of Justice (Germany’s highest
appeals court) revoked Deckert’s $6,000 fine and one year suspended
sentence. The court ordered a retrial of Deckert on the grounds that it was
“too much of an overgeneralization” to assume that he had “attacked the
dignity of the Jewish community in Germany by claiming that the Holocaust
had not occurred” and that a new trial must prove that he was guilty of
specifically “inciting racial hatred” ("Boston Globe", 1994, p. 6).
ruling should affect Leuchter’s trial, which will take place later this
If David Irving were an American baseball fan, he would turn off the sound
on the TV because he could not stand the announcers, and he would read the
box scores every morning without even looking at the AP wire, let alone the
big name columnists. When he decided to become fluent in German, he did not
take German 101 or order “learn-a-language” tapes; he spent two years as a
steel worker in Germany.
Irving goes about writing history in the same do-it-yourself manner. He has
no formal academic training in history. In fact, he holds most academic
historians in contempt. While they spend their time reading each others’
books, Irving avoids secondary and interpretive sources and instead immerses
himself in the archives, going through diaries, correspondence, handwritten
notes of the person he’s writing about, his staff and intimates.
Irving has written or is in the process of writing a book on most of the
major figures of World War II. When I reached him for a series of telephone
interviews he was going over the final draft of "Dr. Goebbels."
Irving’s method of relying on only primary sources gives his books a unique
style and a very controversial impact. Some are more in the form of a
chronology than an interpretive summary. They often read more like Joe
Friday than Gibbon or Macaulay. And like a police report, they contain
firsthand information you will find nowhere else, which is why they have
been required reading at such places as West Point, the Army War College at
Carlisle, Pennsylvania, the British Open University, and the Royal Institute
of International Affairs.
Critics would argue that Irving’s methodology is not only his strength, but
his greatest weakness. The mildest criticism would be that in his avoidance
of secondary and interpretive sources, his reader loses any sense of context
and is unable to see the forest for all the (unearthed) trees.
A stronger criticism would be that after providing a mass of details, Irving
seizes upon some “zinger” as support for some controversial thesis and
thereby guarantees publicity and sales. When I asked Irving if he thought
this criticism had any merit, he answered that if he discovers “zingers as
you call them,” he documents them and follows the evidence wherever it leads
him; he does not manufacture them. He also told me that certain forms of
controversy hurt sales and result in costly litigation.
The strongest criticism would be that Irving uses whatever he can find in
the mass of documents to support his own “mild fascist” position. In 1979 he
argued in Hitler’s War that not only was there no evidence of a Fuhrer order
for the extermination of the Jews, but that Hitler himself did not know what
was going on with respect to the Jews (at least in the beginning).
Since then his conclusions have consistently
moved in a revisionist direction that reduces the culpability assigned to
Germany in general and Hitler in particular, both for starting the war and
Irving told me that the oft-repeated characterization of him as a
“self-described mild Fascist” was neither fair nor accurate and was based on
a 1959 article that was “retracted immediately.” He prefers to describe
himself as an “ultraconservative with socialist leanings.” As for reducing
Nazi culpability, Irving stated that he has publicly accepted every Nazi
atrocity or crime for which he can find hard evidence.
Controversy and litigation are no strangers to Irving.
But it was only after
his testimony in the Zundel trial that governments placed criminal charges
against him, that he was deported or denied entry, and that his books were
removed from stores and/or the stores vandalized. He told me he realized
that there was “a campaign to shut me up” and that he “was up against an
international organization with considerable clout.” I asked him to identify
the organization, which he did as “the traditional enemies of the truth.”
In May, 1992, Irving told a German audience that the gas chamber shown to
tourists at Auschwitz was “a fake built after the war.” In June, 1992, he
was coming to Rome from Moscow. When the plane landed, it was surrounded by
police and Irving was put on the next plane to Munich. He was charged under
the German law of “defaming the memory of the dead” and fined 3,000DM.
He appealed the conviction and on subsequent
appeals the conviction was upheld and the fine increased first to 10,000 and
then to 30,000DM, or about $20,000. (The German legal system provides for
increasing the penalty on appeal. Irving was not the victim of extralegal
tactics, nor has he ever claimed this).
In all his appeals, Irving was not
allowed to call the director of the Auschwitz museum as a witness to confirm
his statement. (The Auschwitz gas chamber is, in fact, a reconstruction
built after the war. No one at the Auschwitz museum denies this.)
Later that year, while in California, Irving received a letter from the
Canadian government saying that he would not be allowed into that country
because of the German conviction.
He did enter Canada, legally, in October,
1992, to receive the George Orwell award from a conservative free speech
organization. He was arrested by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, led away
in handcuffs and told that he was being deported on the grounds that he had
been convicted of a criminal offense in Germany and was likely to perform
similar acts in Canada.
According to Irving, he had been to the country
numerous times before without even a traffic ticket.
At present he cannot legally enter Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Italy,
Germany, or South Africa. When he is allowed into certain countries, the
authorities sometimes present Irving with a list of just what it is he is
not allowed to say. The list can sometimes run 12-15 pages.
Irving feels he has also suffered professionally because of his revisionist
views. Waterstones and Dillon’s (British book chains) decided to keep
Irving’s books out of view after a number of their stores had been
vandalized (Brownlee, 1992). The German Federal Archives in Coblenz, to
which Irving has donated one ton of materials, has denied him further access
and he is demanding the return of his materials. In March of 1994,
Macmillan, the American publisher of Irving’s forthcoming book on Dr.
Goebbels, rejected his final draft and demanded the return of his (sizable)
Irving’s current position is that no one has offered proof (or now even
tries) to contradict his argument that,
there was no “Fuhrer order”
total number of Jewish deaths should be reduced to a figure below one
that the Leuchter Report is firm evidence against the existence of
gas chambers which has been independently confirmed
that the number of
gassings that may have taken place in mobile vans or other experimental
devices was at most an insignificant percentage of the total deaths
Having grown up in a mob town in New Jersey, I asked Irving why one would
even hope to find a written order, as such things usually take the form of
“Hey Vito, can you take care of that thing
for me?” Irving agreed that the “Godfather” method might well have been
the way it happened.
I suggested to Irving that Hitler’s declaration
of war on the United States on December 10, 1941, was evidence that der
Fuhrer realized he would either win the war and have the history books
written the way he wanted, or lose completely, in which case he would take
as many of his enemies with him as he could. Given this mindset, he probably
encouraged Himmler to “take care of that Jewish thing.”
Irving responded that such an interpretation did
not contradict the evidence and may well have been what happened. While
going through the Goebbels diaries he found that from about 1942 on Goebbels
repeatedly said things like,
“We have crimes on our book. We can’t go back.
We can only go forward.”
I quoted Shakespeare’s murderous Richard III (Act
IV, scene ii),
“I am so far in blood that sin will pluck on sin.
Tear-falling pity dwells not in this eye,” which Irving thought fit quite
My conversations with Irving were quite different from those with either
Zundel or Mark Weber. Where Zundel struck me as a super-salesman looking for
a way to close, and Weber seemed like a therapist trying to help me get over
denial, Irving came across as the polished professional, with immediate
recall of a wealth of facts and figures and little concern whether I agreed
with him or not.
This difference became even more obvious when I
“suppose the revisionists are proven
correct, what would change?” He responded, “the press would immediately
say, ‘we knew it all along.’”
He then read his “Note for the Record,” which he
asks all journalists to sign before interviewing him on the Holocaust:
Being a responsible journalist reporting for________, I solemnly
affirm that I still believe in the existence during World War
of “gas chambers” and “factories of death” in which Nazis
killed millions of their opponents. Signed_________ Print
Alternatively: signature declined, (signed)___________
(Since I am acting as a journalist for Skeptic,
here is how I responded to Irving’s note:
“I neither affirm your note as
provided, nor decline to participate. Here’s what, based on reading and
interviews, including you and revisionists, I presently think:
Millions of Jews died in Europe under the
Nazis. Some died of disease, overwork, brutality in the camps. Some were
shot on the spot by Einsatzgruppen and Nazi collaborators. Some were
systematically killed in the camps by methods that included gassing.
I’ve found no ‘hard’ percentages. I’ll continue to believe this until
and unless you or someone else can convince me otherwise.” Irving told
me that I was the second person to provide an alternative version.
others had simply declined. None had signed.)
When I asked Irving what he would do if proven
wrong, he again offered a professional and unemotional reply. He said he’d
move on to something else, satisfied that he had argued the case well.
Where revisionism is a crusade for Zundel, for Irving it seems more an
intellectual battle royal. And when it’s done and over, he believes he’ll be
the last one standing and will take particular delight in stepping over the
bodies of the academics he has KO’d along the way.
Intellectually, Irving’s extremely proud. He told me how, when he was
imprisoned in England for contempt of court arising out of a libel action
brought by Australian Jewish organizations, his fellow prisoners, especially
blacks, treated him with respect and dignity. Irving is miffed that John Charmley is getting the credit for the current wave of Churchill revisionism
going on in Britain, when it was he (Irving) who started it all.
more miffed that Vladimir Zhirinovsky has taken Irving’s place as the star
speaker at right-wing talkfests put on by the German publisher Gerhard Frey.
He considers Zhirinovsky an unstable lightweight who’ll never be taken
seriously, and feels Frey has wasted his money bankrolling Zhirinovsky’s
Irving enjoys taking chances and defending controversial positions for the
intellectual challenge. He doesn’t like to be labeled or pigeon-holed. He’s
currently working on a book on FDR, whom he found to be an exceptionally
capable war time leader who listened to his generals, lost relatively few
lives, “took us (Brits) for all we had,” and made the U.S. a great power.
considers America’s subsequent wars (Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Panama) to
have been counterproductive and racist and thinks the American media have
done a terrible job of presenting the story to us.
After likening the Gulf War to the Holocaust, in
October, 1991, he was thrown out of an Argentine TV studio and all his
lectures in that country were cancelled.
Down the Slippery
Given the unpleasant nature of the subject matter and in many cases the
motivation, manner, and association (past, present, and probably future) of
Holocaust revisionists, one might accuse me of falling back on the
Slope argument. That argument contends that when government invokes some
compelling state interest to “trump” an existing right for an unpopular
minority, one sets in motion a process that eventually undermines the rights
With respect to the history of the Third Reich,
the Slippery Slope argument takes the form of Reverend Niemoeller’s famous
challenge to by-standards:
“First they came for the socialists, and I
did not speak out—because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the
trade-unionists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a
trade-unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak
out—because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was no one
left to speak for me.”
I will go even further and argue that in the
post-Cold War world censorship in general is on the increase, not the
And where once “national security” could be
invoked to deny basic civil rights to dissidents, now preventing injury to
some one’s (or particularly some group’s) “self esteem” is the cry being
used by one and all to erode long established constitutional rights.
recent poll by the National Law Journal found 49% of Americans surveyed,
it would be ‘compelling’ for a defendant to argue that fury as a result of
long-term, institutionalized racism, caused an individual to snap”
1994, p. A19)
Related to anti-revisionism legislation,
consider next the unintended consequences of anti-pornography legislation.
Canada has led the free, industrial world in
anti-porn laws. Indeed, the hate speech laws used against Zundel are part of
the same legislation. The Canadian Supreme Court has expanded the definition
of pornography “to include depictions of sex that degrades or exploits women
or other groups.”
The result—customs officials have gone on a
rampage of seizing books that include scenes of rape, bestiality, child sex,
sex with family members (even if not genetically related) or "even if such
acts are just implied"!
The same customs service memo also covers,
propaganda,” defined in the memo to include “material blaming any specific
group for economic problems or for manipulating the media”
(Lyall, 1993, p.
According to Lyall’s story in The New York Times, “hundreds of books,
magazines, and newspapers have been detained, often for months at a time, or
The most frequent targets of such seizures have
not been 24-hour hard-core porn shops filled with inflatable dolls and
misogynistic “stroke books,” but gay and lesbian books and magazines, small
publishers, and small (often gay and lesbian) proprietorship bookstores—one
quarter of Canada’s feminist bookstores according to the National Coalition
Against Censorship (1993b, p. 1).
Well-known feminists Andrea Dworkin and Catherine MacKinnon have argued that
pornography by its very nature constitutes violence against women, and must
therefore be banned. It is perhaps the ultimate vindication of the Slippery
Slope argument to point out that their works are among those that have been
seized (NCAC, 1993ª, p. 4)!
And based on the examples Dworkin provides of
just what it is she is against, they would have to be. By like reasoning,
Deborah Lipstadt’s book, and this issue of Skeptic, for that matter, could
be seized on the grounds that we have, by way of summary, repeated the
arguments of the Holocaust revisionists and some simple soul out there could
conceivably be won over by them.
Along these lines, a librarian in Montana recently was fired because “she
assisted two seventh-grade girls with their research by giving them
information from encyclopedias and lending them two books of her own after
making sure that they had their parents’ and teacher’s approval” (Hoffman,
1994, p. A23).
The subject was not revisionism, but the Salem
witchcraft trials (though the study of the government suppression of
witchcraft could be classified as feminist revisionist history). The West
Valley School Board of Trustees in their press release argued that Ms.
Denzer was only a “library aide” and that while the two books in question
contained “graphic text and pictures depicting atrocities toward women,”
they contained “only a few pages of information” or “no references” to the
Salem witch trials (West Valley School Board, 1994).
Apparently the West Valley School Board sees no
value in background research. Since the Bill of Rights does not explicitly
mention the Salem witchcraft trials, I guess students at West Valley should
not request a copy of it either. As to protecting school children from the
harmful effects of “graphic depictions of atrocities,” the school board
should perhaps feel compelled to speak with Zundel before allowing any
pupils to see Schindler’s List.
Librarians are in fact duty bound by American Library Association policy “to
obtain requested material without regard to bias or personal judgment”
(Hoffman, p. A23).
A decision by the U.S. First Circuit Court of Appeals
affirmed that Holocaust revisionist materials be treated in,
and nondiscriminatory manner, equally applicable to all and administered
with equality to all”
(Polish Historical Society News Release 1993)
As some feminists consider witchcraft trials the
“women’s holocaust,” the school board’s actions have the effect of not only
violating the rights of revisionists but of simultaneously “denying a
holocaust,” a punishable offense in other countries.
Regarding the use of law to restrict and prohibit Holocaust revisionism, the
skeptical ethic can do no better than to follow the counsel given by Thomas
“If a sect arises, whose tenets would
subvert morals, good sense has fair play, and reasons and laughs it out
of doors, without suffering the state to be troubled by it”
(Jefferson, 1964, p.154).
He noted that when “reason and experiment” are
employed, “error” flees before them.
“It is error alone that needs the support of
government. Truth can stand by itself” (p. 153).
If the skeptical ethic is clear on anything it
is that individuals should not be subjected to government force (that is,
arrest, imprisonment, fines) simply for what they believe, say, or write,
rather than for what they do.
It is perhaps as good a definition of
dictatorship (as opposed to rule of law) as any that individuals are
prosecuted (and persecuted) not for what they have actually done, but for
what unspecified actions they or others influenced by them (also
unspecified) might perform at some unspecified future time.
The quashing of the false news law by the Canadian Supreme Court in the
Zundel case, and the demand for retrial on the grounds of over generality by
the German Appeals Court in the Deckert case, indicate that the courts in
the countries that do have anti-revisionist laws are moving in the direction
of the skeptical ethic and of Thomas Jefferson.
They are also acting in the
spirit of those sections of the Helsinki Accords that deal with freedom of
travel, personal contact, and communication (Lawson, 1991, pp. 717-719).
To date, the most effective and respected
revisionist has been the Israeli high court, which in effect threw out both
survivor testimony and documentation from government archives that were
introduced as evidence by the prosecution when they acquitted John
Can There Be Valid
If the Holocaust is to be treated as a historical event, rather than an
article of religious faith, it must be subjected to continued, critical
revision, and treated no differently than the Battle of Waterloo or any
other historical event.
As Eatwell (1992) points out, the defining
characteristic of serious revisionism, as opposed to propagandistic denial,
is that the former serves to broaden debate, the latter to narrow it. Valid
revisionism provides information on which others may reach different
conclusions, rather than confirmation and reconfirmation of a predefined
(though contrarian) point of view.
In doing so, valid revisionism raises more questions than it answers.
those noted by Eatwell regarding the Holocaust are,
“detailed questions about
the procurement of transport for the Jews... general questions about the
Nazi regime, whether the system was truly totalitarian, or whether it was
more chaotic and fragmented than has generally been assumed... sweeping
issues, such as the question of human nature, or the concept of
(1992, p. 143)
One of the important matters raised by
historians is the debate between “functionalists” who believe the Holocaust
“just evolved,” and “intentionalists” who contend that exterminations were
planned very early on (see Marrus, 1987, pp. 34-48).
Irving’s archival research satisfies Eatwell’s
criterion. It was, in fact, Martin Broszat’s critique of Irving’s Hitler’s
War that moved the functionalist-intentionalist debate from academic circles
into broader public debate (Marrus, p. 40).
Even Zundel, who sparks more heat than light and is often deliberately
inflammatory, did get the “false news” law struck down and thus extended the
civil rights of all Canadians. The summary of the second Zundel trial,
produced by Zundel’s Samisdat Press, provides a bibliography and an index in
addition to the testimony and is a valuable resource.
Lipstadt, one of the severest critics of Holocaust revisionists, notes that
Jean-Claude Pressac was at first impressed by Faurisson’s “seemingly vast
array of knowledge” and “began to meet with him on a regular basis” (p.175).
It was only after Pressac studied Faurisson’s
work and then rejected it that he produced his own work, which Lipstadt and
others believe so effectively destroys the revisionist argument on the gas
“The problem of all factionalism,”
philosopher Hans Sluga pointed out in this analysis of the Heidigger
controversy “is that it already knows the answers to the questions it
(1993, p. 5).
To fully participate in a valid historical
examination of the Holocaust, revisionists cannot continue to simply “nibble
at the edges” of the accepted version, seizing upon any discrepancy or
seeming contradiction between proponents of the accepted view as proof that
the whole thing never happened, in the manner of creationists and Kennedy
A defense lawyer need only create a reasonable doubt in the mind of at least
one juror to deny the prosecution a conviction. In academic argument, when
challenging the “received version,” at some point one must provide an
alternative interpretation of greater plausibility. And this is precisely
what most serious skeptical literature on ESP, faith healing, and the like
does. Likewise, Holocaust revisionists must provide their own detailed
account of what actually did happen to all those Jews if they did not die
the way we have been told they did.
To date, their best attempt is Butz’s
(1976) virtually unreadable "The Hoax of the Twentieth Century."
In particular, to be taken seriously and not be dismissed as “conspiracy
theorists,” revisionists cannot invoke the machinations of powerful,
nefarious Zionist controlled entities to explain away any testimony or
evidence that supports the received version.
Rather, revisionists must
demonstrate independent, falsifiable (in Popper’s sense of being capable of
being disproved) evidence that a small group of Zionist Jews could so
effectively put one over on all the rest of us, at no small cost to us, and
yet have proved singularly unable to rescue the bulk of their coreligionists
from the horrors that befell them (even if only the limited set of horrors
conceded by the revisionists).
If and when Holocaust revisionists produce such material they must be
provided full liberty to write, speak, and distribute it, and be accorded
the opportunity to present it in respectable journals and academic foray.
They should be extended the opportunity to engage in open, fair, and lengthy
debate before knowledgeable audiences (rather than “hit and run” appearances
before self-selected groups) along with anyone of a contrary view who
chooses to appear opposite them.
If such opportunity is refused, they should
self-publish their work along with the rejections and accompanying
correspondence and thereby, as Mr. Jefferson said, “let good sense have fair
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Bolt, R. 1962. A Man for All Seasons. London: Samuel French.
Boston Globe. 1994. “Denying camps doesn’t amount to stirring hatred,
Germans rule.” March 16, p. 6.
Brownley, N. 1992. “War book goes under cover.” Evening Chronicle.
(Newcastle-Upon-Tyne), June 10.
Butz, A. 1977. The Hoax of the Twentieth Century. Southam: Historical
Canada News. 1993. “American Holocaust Revisionist Arrested in Germany.”
November 8, p. 12.
Eatwell, R. 1992. “The Holocaust Denial.” in L. Cheles, R. Ferguson, and
M. Vaughn (eds.). Neo-Fascism in Europe. New York: Longman’s.
Herscher, E. 1994. “Castlemont High Hears Spielberg on Holocaust”
Francisco Chronicle". April 12, p. Al.
Hitchens, C. 1993. “Cultural Elite.” Vanity Fair. December.
Hoffman, A. 1994. “Librarian Fired for Doing Her Job.”
Chronicle". March 16, p. A23.
Hofstadter, R. 1965. The Paranoid Style in American Politics. New York:
Irving, D. 1977. Hitler’s War. New York: Viking. 1994. Author telephone interviews and faxes.
Jefferson, T. 1964. Notes on the State of Virginia. New York: Harper.
Journal of Historical Review. 1993ª “French Court Orders Heavy Penalties
Against Faurisson for Holocaust Views.” March-April, pp. 26-28.
Journal of Historical Review. 1993b. “Holocaust Revisionism is not ‘Hate
Speech’ Canadian Officials Affirm.” May-June, p. 16.
King, D. 1989. Lyndon LaRouche and the New American Fascism. New York:
Kolner Stadt-Anzeiger. 1993 “Verdacht gegen Anwalt.” December 14, 1993,
LaRouche, L. 1979ª. The Power of Reason—A Kind of Autobiography. New
York: New Benjamin Franklin House.
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Benjamin Franklin House.
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Benjamin Franklin House.
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Benjamin Franklin House.
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Le Monde. 1989. “L’agression contre M. Robert Faurisson re’vendique’e par
‘Les fils de me’moire juive’”. September 19, p. 14.
Lipstadt, D. 1993.
Denying the Holocaust. New York: Free Press.
Lyall, S. 1993. “At Canada Border: Literature at Risk?” New York Times.
December 13, p. A6.
McIver, T. 1988. "Anti-Evolution: A Reader’s Guide to Writings Before and
After Darwin". Baltimore: Johns Hopkins.
Marrus, M. 1987. The Holocaust in History. New York: Meridian.
Morin, R. 1994. “Survey on Holocaust Was Seriously Flawed, Rival Polltaker
Says.” San Francisco Chronicle. March 22, p. A7.
National Coalition Against Censorship. 1993ª. NCAC Newsletter. Issue 3,
National Coalition Against Censorship. 1993b. NCAC Newsletter. Issue 4,
New York Post. 1993. “Censors still listing to right.” March 9.
Parker, D. and Hollinger, H. 1994. “’Schindler’ Won’t be Edited for
San Francisco Chronicle. April 9.
Polish Historical Society. 1993. Press Release of December 12.
Russkaia Mysl’. 1994. “The Place Where It’s Uncomfortable to Publish”
January 6-12, p. 13.
Samisdat Publishers Ltd. 1992. "Did Six Million Really Die? Report of the
Evidence in the Canadian “False News” Trial of Ernst Zundel--1988".
Shanker, T. 1993. “U.S. Group helps neo-Nazis, Germany says.”
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Vol. 2, No. 2, pp. 20-22.
-1994. “Holocaust Denial, Free Speech, and the Burden of Proof.”
Skeptic. Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 13-14.
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summaries of material. Taped interview April 13, 1994.
AND THE LAW
Ernst Zundel: Convicted by a Canadian court of inciting racial hatred by
spreading false news for publishing (not writing) the Holocaust revisionist
pamphlet, Did Six Million Really Die?
Retried because of procedural errors
in the first trial, the second trial became a media event, with other
revisionists listed below called as expert witnesses on his behalf.
was again convicted. On appeal, the Canadian Supreme Court struck down the
false news law as unconstitutional.
David Irving: Best-selling British historian of World War II, has moved to
an increasingly revisionist position since he first claimed in Hitler’s War
(1977) that Hitler knew nothing of the extermination of the Jews until late
Since testifying on behalf of Zundel, Irving was fined in Germany
for “defaming the memory of the dead,” deported from Canada on the grounds
that he was “likely to commit a criminal offense” (based on the German
conviction) and denied entry to Australia on the grounds that he was “likely
to become involved in violence.” At present, he cannot legally enter Canada,
Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Italy, or South Africa.
Robert Faurisson: Professor at University of Lyon 2, who wrote that no
homicidal gas chambers were ever in use in the Nazi concentration camps.
Originally suspended from teaching on the grounds that the authorities
“could not protect him” after he was physically beaten, Faurisson, his
publishers, and supporters have been fined for “contesting the crimes
against humanity as defined by the Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal.”
Fred Leuchter: American developer and servicer of execution devices,
testified at Zundel’s second trial that, based on his examination of the
Nazi concentration camps, no executions by “gas chamber” could have taken
place. He repeated his findings before a right-wing group in Germany. His
translator was arrested for “defaming the memory of the dead.”
arrested when he returned to appear on a German TV program to discuss
capital punishment. He is currently in the US, awaiting trial in Germany.
The highest German Appeals Court ordered a retrial of Leuchter’s translator
(a leader of the right-wing party) and revoked the prison sentence and fine
on the grounds that simply denying the Holocaust did not constitute
Leuchter’s lawyer has been placed under investigation, but not
officially charged, for repeating Leuchter’s findings as to the nonexistence
of gas chambers during a bond hearing.
From Skeptic’s Interview of Ernst Zundel by Frank Miele:
Also Sprach Zundel
The number of Jews killed: “All deaths, from all causes, in concentration
What the Germans did to the Jews: “I think that there should have been much
kinder methods found.”
Holocausts and Genocides: “To the Germans, Dresden was the Holocaust—burning
Steven Spielberg: “He is celebrating the tribe in Hollywood. This is so
His own politics: “I’m not a Marxist Socialist. I’m a National Socialist.”
Persecution: “Because of what has happened to me I now know how it must have
felt to be a Jew in Nazi Germany.”
Adolf Hitler: “I am an admirer of how this man took a country that was like
a beaten child amongst nations and within six years turned that place around
and made it into the marvel that National Socialist Germany was in 1938. He
was a humble man with wonderful, intuitive gifts. Hitler’s contribution to
mankind, if he had died in 1939, would be as one of the great statesman of
the 20th century.”
Ernst Zundel: “Society would do well to listen to its outcasts.
These people have a story to tell.”
Long term goals: “To bring Jewish suffering down to what it was, not what
they say it was, and what they exploit. Then make the world take a look at
the Allied behavior toward Germany. Then we can talk to each other as equals
and see that both peoples were victims.”