Friday, December 29, 2006

Holocaust Denial: A Global Survey - 2006

Rafael Medoff and Alex Grobman have put together a year-end survey of the activities of Holocaust deniers during this past year.

You can access the PDF version of their report here.

Here is the introduction to their report.
Executive Summary: Holocaust Denial - A Global Survey: 2006

The prosecution and imprisonment of prominent Holocaust-deniers in Europe dealt a serious blow to the Holocaust-denial movement in 2006. Some civil libertarians decried the use of laws prohibiting Holocaust-denial, but there was a noticeable decline in denial activity following the jailing of the movement’s best-known figure, David Irving, in Austria, and the prosecution of prominent activists Ernst Zundel and Germar Rudolf in Germany. The release of Irving from prison in December 2006, after serving about one-third of his three year sentence, is likely to reinvigorate the denial movement in the year ahead.

In the Middle East, Holocaust-denial continued to enjoy official sponsorship in many countries in 2006. The regimes in Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Syria promoted Holocaust-denial or defended Holocaust-deniers. The Iranian authorities took the lead in this regard, organizing the first-ever government-sponsored international conference of deniers, held in Tehran in December.

Iran’s subsequent announcement of plans to establish an institution to conduct ongoing “research” concerning the Holocaust indicates that Tehran intends to continue actively promoting Holocaust-denial. The injection of Iranian financing will constitute a significant boost for the denial movement, since denier-organizations are typically small and poorly-funded. An additional boost may be provided by the creation of the new English-language division of the Qatari government-funded Al Jazeera television network, since Al Jazeera has broadcast remarks by Holocaust-deniers.

About the Authors

Rafael Medoff, Ph.D.
, is the founding director of The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies. He is associate editor of the scholarly journal American Jewish History and the author of seven books on the Holocaust, Zionism, and the history of American Jewry, the most recent of which (co-authored with David S. Wyman) is A Race Against Death: Peter Bergson, America, and the Holocaust. His essays have appeared in numerous scholarly journals, encyclopedias, and other
reference volumes, including Holocaust & Genocide Studies, the Journal of Genocide Research, and Holocaust Studies Annual.

Alex Grobman, Ph.D., president of the Institute for Contemporary Jewish Life and the Brenn Institute, is co-author (with Michael Sherman) of Denying History: Who Says the Holocaust Never Happened and Why Do They Say It? and author of Rekindling the Flame: Jewish Chaplains in the U.S. Army and the Survivors of the Holocaust and Battling For Souls: The Vaad Hatzala Rescue Committee in Post-War Europe. His most recent book is Nations United: How the United Nations Undermines Israel and the West. He was the founding director of the St. Louis Holocaust Museum and Learning Center , and served as director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles where he was the founding editor-in chief of the Simon Wiesenthal Annual. He edited Genocide: Critical Issues of the Holocaust; Anne Frank in Historical Perspective; and Those Who Dared: Rescuers and Rescued.
Read the entire report here (PDF).

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