December 12, 2006
Iran Offers Holocaust Deniers a Friendly ForumBy Marc Sheppard
They believe and preach that the 20th century Nazi plan to thoroughly remove the presence of Jews from Europe never actually culminated in genocide. They espouse statistics vehemently challenging body counts and cite reports questioning the very existence of gas chambers at the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp. They then quote other sources explaining why the (supposedly non-existent) gas chambers could never have operated as execution apparatus and were actually employed as morgues or delousing stations.
They assert that the "myth" of the Holocaust is either a monstrous hoax or a gross exaggeration perpetrated by Jews solely for the financial benefit of Israel. They are the Holocaust deniers and they've gathered this week to spread their noxious nonsense in the home country of today's most visible of their loathsome lot - Iran.
The stench of last year's Holocaust-denying and annihilation of Israel speeches by its president still lingers in the Iranian desert air. The shadow of this year's Tehran sponsored cartoon contest which invited entrants to lampoon the Holocaust in particular and Jews in general skulks directly beneath it. Of course, it's unlikely that any of the reported 60-70 participants from 30 countries arriving yesterday for the "Review of the Holocaust: Global Vision" conference either noticed or cared. After all, they were invited to present their "papers" and "theories" before Iran's Institute for Political and International Studies. The IPIS, according to its website's announcement of the event,
Here at last is an opportunity for those hitherto confined to bumpkin KKK events, middle school dropout Neo-Nazi rallies and conspiracy-theorist websites, to present their cases "scientifically." And, while many of them use the guise of scholarship to camouflage their true ideology, they all amount to the same vile thing -- Jew-haters. Lurking beneath the surface of their arguments is the same pathological loathing which caused the very circumstances they deny.
Denying the Undeniable
The blatant absurdity of such revisionism places it well outside the realm of any serious analysis or debate. One might just as well refute night when faced with darkness or winter when the streets are lined with snow. In fact, due to the Third Reich's almost anal attention to detailed record keeping, very few historical events are as well documented as was the Holocaust. From the mass shootings of Jews perpetrated by German Police Battalions throughout Europe to the camps strategically erected in Poland to facilitate mass extermination, the Nazis proudly photographed and documented every deadly detail.
And yet, there is perhaps no incident in history even approaching its share of factual challenges by the factually challenged.
This, in spite of the fact that, put to any "scientific" test, not a single denunciation argument stands up.
Deniers seem to abandon all reason and critical rules of evidence in putting forth their preposterous assessments. It's understandable that these blatant anti-Semites disregard the testimonies of thousands of death camp survivors. But they also dismiss the fact that myriad Holocaust perpetrators themselves have admitted to their crimes. Strangely, deniers proclaim the innocence of these acknowledged butchers even though they have absolutely no basis upon which to dispute their confessions.
They also overlook the significance of many European countries considering the denial of the Holocaust as a criminal act, including the main perpetrators of the genocide themselves -- Germany, Austria, Romania and Slovakia. Not surprisingly, last Friday the German government summoned the Iranian charge d'affaires in Berlin to express its strong opposition to the planned conference, saying that attempts to question the Nazis' murder of Jews were "shocking and unacceptable." Berlin is hosting a concurrent symposium to emphasize their revulsion of the Tehran event.
The Fix is In
So what is at the heart of this conference? Iran claims to have entered into it with no preconceived notions. Again, given Ahmadinejad's previous statements that the Israelis invented the Holocaust in order to dispossess the Palestinians, is anyone actually buying? Not likely.
Still, they've assembled a group of bigots on Human Rights Day to discuss one of the greatest of Human Wrongs. People the likes of Australian Holocaust-denier Fredrick Toben, who believes that the Holocaust is a hoax by which Jews subjugate the German people. And his fellow countryman, Richard Krege, an engineer who claims that his electromagnetic scanning of the soil layers at Treblinka and Belsec prove that no bodies were ever buried there. People like Robert Faurisson, who denies the existence of gas chambers in any of the concentration camps. People like Jürgen Graf, a professional bigot who fled Switzerland to Tehran after being sentenced to jail for his extreme revisionist teachings. And let's not forget the former Ku Klux Klan leader whom the always dependable Reuters referred to as "U.S academic" David Duke.
Day one also revealed a number of token Rabbis clad in deliberately conspicuous Orthodox garb. Their presence might have signaled an attempt at balance, had the fact that their beards partially obscured anti-Israel patches sewn to their long black coats not betrayed their true purpose.
Surprisingly, one voice hoping to actually challenge the fabricators, Khaled Kasab Mahameed, was invited to the seminar. Not surprisingly, the Muslim lawyer from Nazareth -- who actually runs a Holocaust museum -- was denied a visa by Iranian authorities at the eleventh hour and will not be attending. This clears the field of anyone who might ask the obvious questions of these "historians." For instance:
Of course, even if so asked, the answers from these "researchers" would be carefully pre-designed to exploit the vulnerability of people's memory, honesty and reason.
The Final Final Solution
By convincing the world that the Jews have perpetrated such a horrific hoax upon them, the modern neo-Nazis believe that they can restore the tarnished reputation of their heroes while demonizing their victims. They are all too aware that time is on their side, as passing years see a decrease in the number of survivors and an increase in the number of revisionists.
Hitler's guiltless targets were scattered throughout Europe. This forced him to round them up and either coerce them to dig their own graves prior to mass-execution, or dispatch them to camps created for that purpose and no other. Ahmadinejad's dream of a Judenfrei Mideast requires no such expansion, as he sees the Jews already ghettoized in a little country called Israel.
If he can convince the world that the Jewish State's very existence is based upon a lie, then perhaps he believes he'll be forgiven for rectifying that mistake.
Marc Sheppard is a technology consultant, software engineer, writer, and political and systems analyst. He is a regular contributor to American Thinker. He welcomes your feedback.