Friday, January 05, 2007

On that whole Holocaust Denial Conference

I didn't write anything about the absolutely asinine Holocaust denial conference held in Iran. Which basically included a montly crue of anti Semites, racists and Holocaust deniers (usually all three in one). It featured washed out racists like American politician/Imperial Wizard of the KKK, David Duke (who seems to personify the statement "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" by traveling to Iran to attend the conference. Or, at the very least Mr. Duke doesn't mind associating or at least attending a conference with non WASPs as long as it gives him some publicity. Also, attending the conference was Ahmed Rami, a Muslim Neo-Nazi and fasist supporter, who frequently communicates with Neo Nazis in Sweden. I guess Mr. Rami doesn't seem to care about the hatred of Muslims by Neo Nazis, so long as it allows him to voice his own hatred of the Jewish people.
Besides, Duke, the conference also was attended by some Canadian professor, who apprarently does not read the newspapers, nor watch TV or listen to the radio, because he claims that he did not "know what the conference was really about."

Obviously what this shows is despite all of the evidence of the Holocaust, which was perhaps the best documented crime in world history, with most of the documentation courtesy of the Nazis themselves; there are going to be people the world over who are going to deny the facts of the Holocaust and the genocide perpetrated by the Nazis.
I didn't give the conference much though, until a few days ago, when I happened to be at my local library where I happened to find a book on the shelf entitled "Auschwitz The Final Tally" by a Mr. Vivian Bird. Not knowing what the purpose of the book was, I took a glance at it. The front cover showed the infamous 'Work Will Make You Free' sign over Auschwitz and below, cheering, happy prisoners. The picture was no doubt taken on the day of liberation, and was probably of some of the political prisoners who were imprisioned in Auschwitz. The impression that the photo was supposed to give of course was that far from being an extermination factory Auschwitz was a "happy" place.
Bird makes David Irving appear as an objective, thoughtful, insightful researcher in comparision. He begins his book talking about the "war" the Jews declared on Germany in the 1920s, he says that there is no documentation, but, naturally it happened. Besides that, the book is "highlighted" by interviews with people who claim that they were in Auschwitz and how there was no extermination that took place there.

Not only does the book show that there are people who are willing to write and read such crap, it also highlights the diffculty of fighting Holocaust denial. After all, how can you argue with someone who believes the Holocaust is a work of fiction? That is the same as arguing with someone who believes the Earth is still flat. Evidence and absolute proof means absolutely nothing to them.
Furthermore, Holocaust denial represents far more dangerous trend than just the writings of a few crackpots here and there. According to Gregory Stanton of Genocide Watch, Denial in the eighth stage of Genocide.


Denial of genocide can have an effect on a country's moral and political future decades after the atrocities occur. Take for example, Turkey, where the government still denies the genocide of the Armenian minority perpetrated there, instead claiming, like some Holocaust deniers do, that the deaths were not the result of a plan to destroy the Armenians but rather a result of a civil war. While the government of Turkey has acted shamefully in this regard, there is one brightspot, Turkish intellectuals and writers are defying their government and writing (or at the very least mentioning) this shameful chapter in Turkish history. One example in Taner Akcam, who has written a book documenting the responsibility of the genocide on the Ottoman government officials.

As long as people attempt to destroy other people, there will always be those who deny that such crimes occured. That should not deter us from fully and completely confronting genocide deniers, be they a Vivian Bird or a Ahmadinejad; to not do so would only represent a postumous victory of the genocidaires themselves.

For antecedent to the Holocaust Denial conference, see here for information about a conference at the US Holocaust Museum with local Muslim leaders, survivors and museum associates.

3 comments:

Owen said...

Well written, and the Holocaust Museum clip is admirable.

Daniel said...

Holocaust denial is terrible, it's just one of those terrible stuff that hurts survivors of holocaust. I have spoken to survivors of Srebrenica Genocide, and they told me they are hurt by people who deny Genocide. The object of deniers is to continue hurting particular groups who were marked for extermination. Srebrenica men and boys were marked for extermination, and genocide did happen. Jews were main target of exterminations during Second World War and nobody can deny it.

One of main issues with Holocaust, from revisionist point of view, is "numbers." Remember, they used same excuse to deny Srebrenica Genocide. While there is no ultimate database of 5-6 million people who perished during Holocaust, there is one database that I found that contains around 1 million names. Now, of course, this is a work in progress, but at least it gives great credibility to the fact that millions died.

We need to stand in defence of those who perished through gross human rights violations, those who perished through genocides and holocaust.

Whether it's Holocaust, or Srebrenica Genocide, or Rwanda Genocide, we need to recognize them as such, because courts have already spoken !

Shaina said...

We need to stand in defence of those who perished through gross human rights violations, those who perished through genocides and holocaust.

Absolutely.