The Journal of Historical Review

Unanswered Correspondence

LEWIS BRANDON & ARTHUR R. BUTZ

Christopher Hitchens
New Statesman
10 Great Turnstile
London WCIV 7HJ England

Dear Christopher Hitchens:

26 August 1980

If the New Statesman is not "part of Israel's media chorus" (NS 20 June 1980) then why is it that your paper refused to print letters from three distinguished Revisionist academics, after they were slandered in your tractate last November?

Your distinguished editor felt that the views of these academics, i.e. anti-Zionist and skeptical of the "Holocaust" group-fantasy, removed them from the arena of debate. The Press Council is now deliberating on Page's curious views on freedom of dissent.

I really would appreciate your reactions, Chris, for it seems to me that there is one part of the Zionist apparatus which seeks to neutralize debate by touching tangentially on the more sensitive issues, and then skating away again before they can be thoroughly gone into. At a stroke, the Zionists can claim to be "covering all aspects in free debate" but yet simultaneously squelching any aspects of that debate which go outside their parameters.


Hope to hear from you.
Sincerely

LewisBrandon


Letters to the Editor
West Palm Beach Post
P.O. Drawer T
West Palm Beach, FL 33405

15 September 1980

Dear Sir:

In your issue of 15 August you describe Lili Meir as finding her Auschwitz photo album at Auschwitz.

In your issue of 27 August you describe her as finding the album at Dora-Nordhausen.

In your 15 August issue you describe Auschwitz being liberated by noisy, musical Allied troops. (Auschwitz was liberated by Soviet troops.)

In your 27 August issue you describe Dora-Nordhausen being liberated by singing American troops.

The entire feature represents a kind of Holocaust Hoax in miniature. Contradictions from one day to the next; distortions and lies day in and day out.

Sincerely

Lewis Brandon


Letters to the Editor
HomeNews
New Brunswick, NJ 08903

15 September 1980

Gentlemen:

In an article on Holocaust Studies (30 August 1980) a caption to a photograph of Dachau reads:

…the camp's elaborate system of gas chambers and crematoria.

I would be very interested in finding out what your evidence is for this allegation. Most Holocaust commentators today acknowledge that none of the camps in Germany proper had "gas chambers." Simon Wiesenthal in Books & Bookmen (April 1975) writes that:

"there were no extermination camps on German soil…"

Dr. Martin Broszat writes in Die Zeit (26 August 1960):

"No Gassings at Dachau."

None of the major Exterminationist authors such as Hilberg, Reitlinger or Dawidowicz maintain such a position as your paper.

Perhaps your contributor should step forward and present his startling new evidence for examination?

Sincerely

Lewis Brandon


The History Teacher
California State University
Long Beach, CA 90840

28 October 1980

Dear Sir:

I have just read Mr. Mork's article on "Teaching the Hitler Period" in your August issue, which mentioned our Revisionist works on the "Holocaust."

Inter alia, Mr. Mork decrees: "In my judgement, these volumes have no place on the shelves of an undergraduate library."

He later alleges that Revisionist works on the "Holocaust" are "anti-Semitic" and similar to The Protocols and Mein Kampf.

Since all our publications are fully referenced - the Butz book contains 14 pages of sources - it would seem that it is per se anti-Semitic to challenge the veracity of Holocaust "history." I wonder how then Mr. Mork would treat those Jewish writers who challenge the authenticity? How does he regard Gitta Sereny, who wrote in the New Statesman of 2 November 1979 that:

"Auschwitz, despite its emblematic name, was not primarily an extermination camp for Jews and is not the central case through which to study extermination policy.

How does he regard Simon Wiesenthal who wrote in Books & Bookmen of April 1975:

"there were no extermination camps on German soil…"

Both of these statements revise the previously accepted versions of the Holocaust legend. Are only revisions of detail allowed, and not of the substance?

In any case, who on earth is this pompous Mr. Mork to dictate what can and cannot have a place on library shelves? Maybe "in his judgement" the Butz book has no place, but maybe in someone else's all points of view should be represented.

A host of educational civil liberties organizations recently filed an amicus curiae in Warsaw, Indiana, to prevent the school board from censoring library shelves. They said:

"The public school should be a vibrant, free market of ideas. If the right to read and be exposed to controversial ideas cannot flourish in the school house, the prospects are bleak that it will ever flourish anywhere in society."

Obviously, Mr. Mork would not agree with such highminded sentiment. He prefers to engage in book-burning in case his students start to question his own "Indisputable Historical Truths" about the "Holocaust" notion.

Sincerely
Lewis Brandon


Letters Department
Panorama
P.O. Box 950
Wayne, PA 19087

10 November 1980

Gentlemen:

I am amazed at the candor with which William L. Shirer writes about World War Two TV movies. ("The Nazis are Coming! The Nazis are Coming!" November 1980).

He actually describes the Nazis as "bad guys" and the Americans as "good guys" in the same two-dimensional cardboard-cutout style which has been the curse of televisual drama since its inception. In his hysterical, paranoid urge to stereotype the dramatis personae he lurches into terminology which would be laughable if it were in any other context: "fascination with evil", "evil genius", "monsters," "barbarism," "band of ruffians," etc. etc.

Why is it that viewers can be allowed to see all sides; all points of view; all outlooks, on every war in history, with the exception of one: the Second World War? Why do we still maintain that this was the one war ever fought that had "bad guys" on one side and "good guys" on the other? "Monsters" and "Saints"? "Evil" and "Good"? "Guys in Black Hats" and "Guys in White Hats"? Is this the sum total of television's educational ability? Has TV become so jejune that it has to perpetually deal in pigeon-holed people?

Shirer's scant attention to facts also omens badly for us. We are now told that the Nazis killed "six million Jews and six million Slavs." We are told that Hitler had "only one close friend, Ernst Roehm." I am afraid that Mr. Shirer has allowed his poetic license to run away with his historical accuracy.

Where, in any of these movies, is there ever any attention given to the facts? In dealing with the ""Anne Frank remake, why does Mr. Shirer not tell us that the German courts have now decided that the "Diary" is a fake, as reported in the New York Post 9 October 1980? In dealing with the "exterminations" why does he not tell us that a host of academic and forensic experts such as Dr. Arthur Butz (Northwestern University), Dr. Robert Faurisson (University of Lyon), John Bennett (Victoria Civil Liberties Council, Australia), have all declared that the "gas chambers" are a ficton? Why does he not tell us that even "Holocaust" experts such as Gitta Sereny admit that "Auschwitz was not an extermination center" (New Statesman 2 November 1979)?

I must admit to some satisfaction that the younger generation at least are not being taken in by this historical cartooning. Our youngsters often are more adept than we think, in differentiating between romper-room play-acting ("bad guys vs. good guys") and reality (man vs. man).

Sincerely

Lewis Brandon


Letters to the Editor
Detroit Free Press
Detroit, MI 48231

12 November 1980

Gentlemen:

Your Question & Answer column of a November 1980 regarding the "Avenue of the Righteous" in Israel ignores certain fundamental points.

First, the Anne Frank case is not as it appears in her alleged "Diary." The "Diary" was written- probably by her father-after the war. A recent German court case, reported in the New York Post of 9 October 1980, found that parts of the manuscript were written in ball-point pen-the ink of which was not available until 1951!

Second, the "Holocaust" did not involve the extermination of the Jews in gas chambers. Numerous academics, such as Dr. Arthur Butz of Northwestern University near Chicago, have found that the "gas chambers" are fictitious

After the war, it was claimed that all the camps had "gas chambers" but then in 1960 they claimed that the camps in Germany-proper did not, but only the camps in German-occupied Poland did. How long will it be before the authorities admit that there is as little proof for extermination chambers in Poland as there had been prior to 1960 for the German camps?

Thirdly, will the Israeli "Avenue of the Righteous" be allowed trees for those who do not meet with the current Zionist regime's approval as "righteous"? Will they plant a tree for Adolf Eichmann, who was a staunch Zionist, and negotiated the re-settlement of Hungarian Jews in Palestine during the war? Will they plant a tree for all the Palestinian women and children who were butchered by Menachein Begin's gang of cut-throats at Deir Yassin in 1948?

Lastly, is it morally correct for a gang of murderers and crooks (the Israeli government) to take onto themselves the right to allocate "righteousness" to the rest of the world? The present Israeli nation must be unique in the world today, as it is the only sovereign state to be administered by a government containing at least three known assassinsthe Prime Minister, the Foreign Minister and the Agriculture Minister, to say nothing of the rest of the gang of crooks in the Knesset, such as Flatto-Sharom, wanted in France on a billion dollar fraud rap. Now he has the nerve to try to send gangs of assassins into France-the country he defrauded-to murder French citizens who happen to fall into disfavor with the Knesset!

These are some questions your "Question and Answer" column somehow avoided not just answering, but even asking.

Sincerely
Lewis Brandon


Judith F. Krug
American Library Association
50 East Huron Street
Chicago, IL. 60611

12 November 1980

Dear Ms. Krug:

I am writing to enlist your support in our efforts to exercise our rights to free speech under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. I read an article in today's Los Angeles Times which indicated that your organization readily supports such causes.

We are the publishers of a number of books which present a controversial analysis of the so-called "Holocaust." Our authors present an argument that no Jews were gassed in gas chambers as part of a Nazi extermination program. These authors are university professors, and other distinguished academics.

We have suffered suppression and censorship because this view of the "Holocaust" is not in accord with that of mainstream opinion. Several attempts have been made, not just to prevent us from airing this point of view, but to actually victimize those who endorse our point of view. Let me give some examples.

Dr. Reinhard Buchner is a member of the Editorial Advisory Committee of our quarterly JOURNAL OF HISTORICAL REVIEW. He teaches physics and astronomy at California State University, Long Beach. When his name first appeared on our masthead, several organizations lobbied Cal. State to have him fired from his position, or at least censured. These organizations were the Anti-Defamation League and the Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies, both based in Los Angeles. In the August 1980 issue of The History Teacher, published by the Cal. State History Department, a Professor Gordon R. Mork states that: "These (Revisionist) volumes have no place on the shelves of an undergraduate library."

The Organization of American Historians is headquartered on the campus of Indiana University. Earlier this year we rented their mailing-list to send promotional material to their members. Again, the Anti-Defamation League stepped in, and pressured the OAH into apologizing to them for allowing us to rent the list, and presenting a non-ADLauthorized viewpoint to their membership! The OAH have now refused to rent us their list again, and stated that the originial rental was "an error."

Pomona College, Claremont, California was the venue of our 1980 Revisionist Convention, where Revisionist academics came from all over the world to exchange views and hear speakers. After the conference, I understand that the Anti-Defamation League again lobbied the college against us, and on 11 August 1980 the President of the college wrote to me to tell me that in view of "the character of (our) literature and the nature of (our) program ... Pomona College will not be able to offer (us) the use of its facilities in the future."

These are just three examples out of many which I could describe. There are many other cases of discrimination against us and our academics. Many of them involve victimization and career undermining.

I would be most interested to have your response, and hope that the American Library Association can publicly defend our rights in this matter.

Sincerely

Lewis Brandon


The Secretary
Board of Education
Pasadena, CA 91101

11 December 1980

Gentlemen:

I note that the Pasadena Board of Education is contemplating introducing "Holocaust Studies" in the English curriculum. One of the titles mentioned was the Diary of Anne Frank.

I would like to draw to your attention the fact that the "Diary" has been declared a fake by many eminent historians and academics such as David Irving, Alfred M. Lilienthal, Arthur R. Butz, Robert Faurisson and John Bennett. A court case in West Germany found that parts of the diary had been written (in the same handwriting as the rest of the text) in ballpoint pen-the ink of which wasn't available until 1951; six years after Anne is supposed to have died of disease. I suggest you examine the articles on this finding in the New York Post (9 October), Der Spiegel (6 October), Christian Science Monitor (14 November) and The Spotlight (1 December). For some reason, this startling news was determined to be of no interest to the readers of the LA Times, Newsweek and Time.

If the board does decide to introduce "Holocaust Studies" of some kind, I do hope that you will be objective enough to include books which dispute that the gas chambers ever existed. More and more academics around the world are beginning to challenge the Establishment's view of history in the same way that Copernicus, Galileo and Darwin challenged scientific orthodoxy in times gone by. Will the Board have the courage to allow your students to appraise such titles as The Hoax of the Twentieth Century, Six Million Lost & Found, Anne Frank's Diary: A Hoax, and Debunking the Genocide Myth? All of these titles are published by ourselves, and we would be pleased to forward review copies to the Board gratis. In the meantime, I have enclosed some descriptive literature.

In a recent court case in Indiana, concerning book-banning, the National Council of Teachers in English told the court:

The public school should be a vibrant, free market of ideas. Indeed, if the "right to read and be exposed to controversial thoughts" cannot flourish in the school house, the prospects are bleak that it will ever flourish anywhere in society.

I am sure the Pasadena Board of Education would wholeheartedly endorse this principled statement, and that we will be hearing from you in the very near future.

Sincerely

Lewis Brandon


Letters to the Editor
Commentary
165 E. 56th Street
New York, NY 10022

12 December 1980

Dear Mr. Podhoretz:

I trust you will allow as much space in your professionally-produced magazine for us to reply to Lucy Dawidowicz's allegations as you did for the responses to "The Boys on the Beach." Ms. D. dealt at some length with THE JOUR - NAL OF HISTORICAL REVIEW, which I have the privilege to edit, and the Historical Revisionist movement in general, which I help to promote.

I regret that it has been some time since I last read a more evasive and ad hominem article. This article was a discredit to the historical profession and to the normally high standards of objectivity displayed in your columns. With almost every sentence, Ms. D. manages to slip in some slur, or some subjective judgement:

Taylor does not write a book, but a "mischievous" book. Barnes does not have a viewpoint, but is "possessed by the idea." He does not do a thorough study, but uses up "rabid energy." His writings are not history, but "obsessions," and are "shrill, irresponsible, irrational" and "polemical." His consistency and sincerity are worthless, it seems, for he is a "calcified isolationist." Dr. James J. Martin does not write history but "oddball history." John Bennett is not impressed by the factuality of Butz's writings, he is "converted" by its "unhinging effect." Warren B. Morris Jr. does not write a thesis, he writes "an undistinguished dissertation on a minor 19th century German diplomat." Faurisson does not put forward a viewpoint, he suffers from "monomania." THE JOURNAL OF HISTORICAL REVIEW is not a learned journal, but "a potpourri of anti-Semitic propaganda camouflaged to look like a learned journal."

Are these descriptions really those of an objective, impartial, historian or are they the subjective outrage of a totem worshipper who has just heard a blasphemous remark?

Ms. D. does not do the one thing that distinguishes correct historical research from mere historical journalism: firsthand investigation. Her writing is full of factual errors transposed from other "exposes" and journalistic accounts. Thus she claims that the first Revisionist Convention was held at "Northrup College" when she means Northrop University. This error first appeared in a tabloid newspaper and has been recycled in almost every "expose" on Revisionism so far-so much for the correctness of the Exterminationist historians!

Secondly, Ms. D. makes a glaring research faux-pas when she mixes up the Revisionist Press of Brooklyn-a Jewish libertarian publishing house, with The Revisionist Press of New Jersey-a German-American Revisionist imprimatur.

These are just two of the more glaring errors in this "historical" piece. But Ms. D's main shortcoming is in the fact that nowhere does she address the arguments of the Revisionists at all!

Dr. Butz has made the point that little if any of the Nuremberg Trials evidence would be admitted to a U.S. criminal court-most of it was hearsay, affidavits from dead people, documents with no proof of source, testimony under duress, etc. etc. The court itself was run by rules that would never be tolerated in this country: the defendants were not allowed to represent themselves, and the defense counsel were not permitted proper access to prosecution evidence. Nowhere does Ms. D. address this.

Dr. Faurisson has made several very succinct and very telling points:

  1. Immediately after the war it was widely held that the camps in Germany as well as the camps in Poland had gas chambers. Germans were hanged for gassing inmates at several German camps, for there was "evidence, testimony, and confessions" to prove this. Since 1960, all the Exterminationists have agreed that there were no gassings in the German camps; just in the Polish camps. Now, asks Dr. Faurisson, what is the substantial difference between the evidence, testimony and confessions regarding gassings at the German camps (now admitted as bogus) and the evidence, testimony and confessions regarding gassings at the Polish camps (still maintained as genuine). How is it that Anglo-American evidence can be dismissed as false, and yet Communist Polish and Communist Soviet evidence can still be retained as genuine?
  2. Secondly, Dr. Faurisson asks how could the "confessions" of the Commandant of Auschwitz Rudolf Hoess be genuine if they fly in the face of science? Hoess talks about the sonderkommandos entering the gas chamber immediately after the gassing operation while smoking and eating. This is a scientific impossibility, since the sonderkommandos would have been themselves asphyxiated, and their cigarettes would have caused an explosion!

I have searched in vain in Ms. D's article for any addressing of these crucial points.

Nor have I found any reference to the reward of $50,000, which we announced at our 1979 Revisionist Convention, for proof that even one Jew was gassed to death in a Nazi gas chamber as part of an extermination program. Nor have I found any reference to the most significant writings of Ms. D's contemporary, Gitta Sereny, who wrote in the New Statesman of 2 November 1979 that Auschwitz was not in the main an extermination center, and that many Holocaust memoirs" are faked.

I regret that Ms. Dawidowicz comes across in her essay as yet another of those tedious individuals who are unable to handle facts which do not co-ordinate with her preconceived notions. She would have done well as a cheer-leader among the crowds who abused Leonard da Vinci, Copernicus, Charles Darwin, and Christopher Columbus himself. She would have done especially well as one of the chief Inquisitors of the Spanish Inquisition, or one of Cromwell's head witchfinders, or one of the Pope's heretic-burners. Her sarcasm about the failure of universities or institutions to censure, fire or otherwise punish Revisionists, smacks of the Dark Ages.

Ms. D. even flies off on a tangent of fantasizing, where she imagines that Liberty Lobby is financing the Institute for Historical Review, and that "alas" Jews were not gassed. In our Winter 1980 issue Dr. Howard Stein, a noted authority on group-fantasizing and its role in psychohistory, presents a fascinating insight into this particular neurotic dysfunction. But I suppose Ms. Dawidowicz would dismiss the views of Dr. Stein as being "self-hate"? Perhaps she could correct me if I am wrong.

The most disturbing aspect of all in Ms. D's polemic is her refusal to debate the facts. She quotes with approval the collective view of some French historians, who tautologically insist that it was possible for the Holocaust to happen because it did happen. She stridently recounts her outrage at a naive radio producer who asked her to debate with Dr. Faurisson. It is indeed with relief that I turn to the writings of Dr. Chomsky and Dr. Stein, who maintain the highest of academic values. Dr. Stein wrote to me earlier this year to point out that the importance of historical Revisionism is "attested by the very controversy which it stirs. This is so even if you are wrong in your conclusions." Voltaire would have been proud to have witnessed such objectivity.

Sincerely

Lewis Brandon


Editor
Commentary
165 E. 56th Street
New York, NY 10022

16 December 1980

Dear Sirs:

Commentary maintains relatively high standards for a mass circulation magazine and Lucy Dawidowicz is a competent historian in the purely technical sense. Therefore it was perhaps singular to read her article in your December issue, for there is little there apart from the name-calling. It is ludicrous to try to characterize "holocaust" revisionism as a "neo-Nazi" phenomenon merely because the label can be argued to apply in a few cases. That the label does not characterize is clear even from many of the names that Dawidowicz herself brings up.

To address a point of greater personal concern, I was mildly amused to see Dawidowicz mention, with obvious approval (indeed she is a contributor), the booklet Dimensions of the Holocaust, which I suppose is still available from Northwestern University Press. The booklet is the

published form of four lectures given at Northwestern in 1977 "by three Jews and a philo-Semite," as she put it. The lectures have played a role their organizers never imagined. Some who read my book (The Hoax of the Twentieth Century), but were at first in no position to pass judgment on it, noted in the lectures the emptiness of the alleged scholarly opposition to my thesis that developed at Northwestern, and drew appropriate conclusions. By all means, one should read the booklet.

Ironically, I can recommend another publication -Prof. Dawidowicz's own The War Against the Jews, whose main original contribution is a reconstruction of Jewish life in Poland under the Nazi persecution. Try as one may, her picture of this fife cannot be reconciled with any notion of the simultaneous existence of a program of complete physical extermination of the very same people on the very same territory.

I do not know why Jewish spokesmen do not realize that the worst they can do is attempt to discourage inquiry. There are many examples of this behavior but here I shall cite only an incident that Dawidowicz mentions. Last spring the Organization of American Historians routinely rented its mailing list to the new Institute for Historical Review (with which I am associated); the IHR then sent gratis copies of the premier issue of its JOURNAL OF HISTORICAL REVIEW to the members of the OAH. The ADL (which has the near unanimous support of the Jewish community) protested this use of the OAH mailing list and the OAH apologized. Dawidowicz clearly supports the protest, which was in accord with an evident policy of attempting to stifle critical examination of the received legend. There is no other valid interpretation of the protest. The chief consequence is the introduction of a quite avoidable inflammatory element into the controversy, for there are no doubt many members of the OAH who (in contrast to some of the OAH's leaders) do not feel, and would be offended by any suggestion, that they need the ADL's intellectual guardianship.

Sincerely

Arthur R. Butz Evanston, Il.


Letters to the Editor
New York Times
229 W43 Street
New York City, NY 10036

7 January1981

Dear Sir:

I have noted your article by Richard Eder regarding Professor Robert Faurisson in France, and Professor Noam Chomsky at Harvard.

It is incorrect in a number of respects.

First, Prof. Faurisson does not hold "no particular prominence on the French intellectual or academic scene." In 1961 he published A-t-on lu Rimbaud? [Has Anybody read Rimbaud?) which gave a unique and fascinating insight into that French poet's Voyelles. This was followed in 1972 with A-t-on lu Lautreamont? and in 1976 by La Cie des Chimeres et Autres Chimeres de Nerval. All of these were received with much critical acclaim in France.

Secondly, Dr. Faurisson's case was in no way "weakened" by his arguments. His arguments are based on concrete reality. There is no way that millions of persons could have been gassed in the facility presently on display at Auschwitz, in the manner described in Hoess's confessions. This is a physical impossibility, and Dr. Faurisson challenges anyone to forensically prove otherwise. Secondly, he draws attention to the fact that Germans were hanged after the war for "gassing" people at camps where it is now universally admitted that there were no "gas chambers." Why is it, he asks, that we discount the Allied investigations, evidence, trials, confessions, etc. for the German camps; and yet we still maintain as valid the Soviet and Polish communist investigations, evidence, trials and confessions? Why is it that all of the "evidence" for gassings is testimony-why is there not one shred of documentary or forensic proof? How much more concrete can one get? If these "witnesses" are so sure, why have they not stepped forward to claim our $50,000 reward?

The attitude of the French "intellectuals" is best illustrated by their joint advertisement in Le Monde where they stated: "It was not necessary to wonder how, technically, such mass murder was possible. It was technically possible because it took place." Such a tautology would not have been out of place at the infamous "Monkey Trial" when it was stated that Evolution could not have been so because the Bible said so. Truly, French intellectual fife is in need of counsel from such thinkers as Dr. Chomsky.

Sincerely

Lewis Brandon


Letters to the Editor
Pittsburgh Press
P.O. Box 566
Pittsburgh, PA 15230

27 January 1981

Dear Sir:

I noted with distress the article of January 18th regarding the proposed "Pittsburgh Holocaust Studies Center."

The "Holocaust" has long ago been discredited by such internationally known historians as Dr. Arthur Butz of Northwestern University, Chicago and Dr. Robert Faurisson of the University of Lyon-2 in France.

Immediately after the war it was claimed that all the camps: those in Germany-proper and in German-occupied Poland had "gas chambers." But in the early 1960s the Holocaust propagandists revised their theories to say that the camps in Germany-proper did not have "gas chambers--only the camps in German-occupied Poland had such facilities.

The Revisionist historians ask:

What is the difference in quality between (a) the evidence, testimony, confessions and trials which "proved" the gassings at the Allied-occupied German camps; and (b) the evidence, testimony, confessions and trials which 6. proved" the gassings at the Communist-occupied Polish camps? Why do we still believe Communist atrocity tales, and discount Allied atrocity tales?

Simon Wiesenthal himself admitted that the German "gas chambers" were fakes when he wrote to Books & Bookmen (April 1975) that: "There were no extermination camps on German soil."

Another Holocaust historian,Gitta Sereny, has now begun to discount even Auschwitz; "Auschwitz, despite its emblematic name, was not primarily an extermination camp for Jews. " (Original emphasis).

One wonders how long it will be before the "extermination centers" having been moved further and further East by the Exterminationists, will be relocated on the outskirts of Kiev?

Sincerely
Lewis Brandon


Mr. Norman Podhoretz
Editor
Commentary
165 E. 56
New York, NY 10022

Dear Mr. Podhoretz:

First of all I should like to preface my remarks by saying how much I have enjoyed reading Commentary over the years initially under the able editorship of Elliot Cohen (who tragically committed suicide) and then under your very astute leadership as editor.

The subject of this letter is Mrs. Lucy S. Dawidowicz' December 1980 article in Commentary, "Lies About the Holocaust" which is a malicious smear of historical Revisionism; in particular the work of Dr. Harry Elmer Barnes and Dr. James J. Martin.

An examination of the 1000 page-volume Crusader published as a testimonial to Dr. Barnes in 1968 bears little resemblance to the "paranoid" portrayed in the Commentary article. Edited by Arthur Goddard of the New York High School of Printing, this remarkable volume presents exacting appraisals of Barnes' career by such historians as Merle Curti, Harold U. Faulkner, Stanton L. Davis, William L. Neumann and Henry M. Adams; sociologists: George A. Lundberg, Richard Dewey, Frank H. Hankins, Ray H. Abrams and Read Bain, criminologist: Jeremiah P. Shalloo; anthropologist: Leslie White; eminent publicist, Joseph Wood Krutch; and educator, Clyde R. Miller, winner of a special award from the National Conference of Christians & Jews. In addition this volume includes a 50-page bibliographic survey of Barnes' writings, which is to say the least, extremely impressive. For a portrait of 'the real Barnes' I would advise the readers of Commentary to study this volume.

The career of Dr. James J. Martin is equally important in its way as that of Harry Elmer Barnes. Mrs. Dawidowicz' characterization of Dr. Martin's Men Against the State as 44 oddball" is a very strange comment. Dr. Paul Avrich, the formidable historian of anarchism at Queens College, City University of New York, has a quite different opinion of Men Against the State which first appeared in 1953 and has been published in three editions since then and has received about fifty highly positve reviews world-wide. Dr. Martin is also a three-time contributor to the Dictionary of American Biography with his excellent articles on anarchists Emma Goldman, Alexander Berkman and Benjamin R. Tucker. The two books of essays Dr. Martin has compiled from his articles Revisionist Viewpoints and The Saga of Hog Island are classics of revisionist scholarship as are his re-editions of eminent American anarchists.

It is difficult to write a critique of Mrs. Dawidowicz' mishmash of an essay but some points bear emphasis.

  1. Revisionists are not neo-Nazis. A checklist of Revisionist publicists finds Democrats, Republicans, Socialists, Anarchists, Atheists, Catholics, Pacifists with Far Right and Far Left and everything in-between represented. The neoNazi smear does not hold water.
  2. Mrs. Dawidowicz' statement in March Commentary that "notable isolationists headed by Charles Beard himself never admitted Barnes to their company" is completely without foundation. Where does Mrs. Dawidowicz do her research?
  3. Mr. Willis Carto's pedigree has nothing to do with Revisionist historical writing. It must stand or fall on its own merits. Whether or not Mr. Carta is an anti-Semite does not answer the question of the "gas chambers" or the "planned extermination of Jewry." Mrs. Dawidowicz does not attempt to refute the basic arguments of Butz, Rassinier, Faurisson et al.
  4. If Mr. Willis Carta in his support of Revisionist scholars helps us prevent a Third World War then he is a benefactor of humanity, anti-Semite or not. "Each man has a right to have his ideas examined one at a time."
  5. This writer-contrary to Mrs. Dawidowicz' assertions -finds no evidence whatsoever of anti-Semitism in the writings of Butz and Faurisson. They are both extremely careful scholars and restrained in their opinions.
  6. I would like to know which "fascist" books Ralph Myles has published as Mrs. Dawidowcz' alleges. I can't find any on their list.
  7. According to Mrs. Dawidowcz, Harry Elmer Barnes guided Dr. David Leslie Hoggan to "Nazi apologetics." If Mrs. Dawidowcz had done the most elementary research she would have found that far from guiding Hoggan into "Nazi apologetics," just the opposite was true!
  8. Dr. Warren B. Morris' Revisionist Historians and German War Guilt does not as Mrs. Dawidowicz alleges "give legitimacy" to the Revisionists. Like any other historical work it must stand or fall on its merits. It cannot "give legitimacy" to what is already a legitimate subject of inquiry. There are no dead issues in scientific inquiry and scholarship as pointed out by Dr. Noam Chomsky and Dr. Howard F. Stein.
  9. Revisionist Press (of Brooklyn), not New Jersey, is antifascist, libertarian (one of our heroes is Jewish anarchist David Edelstadt) and for communication between all cultures and all peoples of the world-this, for the record. We have suffered ourselves in the Tragedy of Europe (1939 - 1945) through loss of relatives, separation of families and need no lessons from people making a living writing about the holocaust. We do not believe the Jews are a Chosen People and neither are the Germans. They are both victims of history and economics.
  10. Harry Elmer Barnes did not translate Rassinier's book into English.
  11. The article attributed to Harry Elmer Barnes in the Appendix to Myth of the Six Million is not authentic. It was erroneously attributed to Barnes.
  12. Harry Elmer Barnes was not a fanatical Roosevelthater. In the thirties he generally supported the New Deal.
  13. 1 agree with Mrs. Dawidowicz' that we should await Dr. Martin's publication of his book on genocide with anxiety. Excerpts published in The Journal of Historical Review make it apparent that it will be a formidable work and Establishment mythologists should take heed.
  14. Mrs. Dawidowcz is careful not to reveal Rassinier's pacifist activities and his subsequent arrest by the Gestapo. Why? However she is very quick to label him an anti-Semite, also not revealing his efforts at rescuing Jews. Why? Are these the activities of a rabid anti-Semite?

In conclusion I would like to commend Commentary's publication of Robert Alter's article on "holocaustamania" -Hollywood style. It's a step in the right direction!

Shalom,

Bezalel Chaim

P.S. It is interesting to note the advertisement in December 1980 Commentary for the Frank Chodorov book Fugitive Essays. Frank Chodorov was a strong supporter of both Dr. Barnes and Dr. Martin in their work and also a member of the justice for Tyler Kent Committee! Did Mrs. Dawidowicz approve of this ad, Mr. Podhoretz?


Source: Reprinted from The Journal of Historical Review, vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 197-217.


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