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Tuesday, August 07, 2007

The Holocaust as a Bureaucracy

The obituary of Raul Hilberg in today's NY Times (8/7/07) reminded MrKen of a holocaust denier ('Beau Peep') who left some Neo-Nazi propaganda in the form of a comment on this blog way back on 8/25/06, in response to my post, "Mumbai's 'Hitler's Cross' restaurant to change name after uproar". The link to this and a related post about the Holocaust is--

http://mrken45sworld.blogspot.com/search?q=holocaust

Here are some putative 'facts' from "Beau Peep's" hateful & utterly nonsensical rant:

...The Japanese killings of prisoners during the World War II were much worse than what happened to the Jews in Nazi occupied Europe...

...The Holocaust itself is a subject matter of debate. I firmly believe that in order to justify a land for the Jews (creation of Israel out of nothing but biblical references), the West had to create a story so horrific that humankind is moved enough to accept and support Israel. The West had to save themselves from the embarrassment because it was the European nations who were mainly responsible for whatever happened to the Jews at the hands of the Nazis...

...If you asked my personal opinion, I don’t deny or believe in the Holocaust. You can say that I am not really sure whether it actually took place...

...As far as the numbers of Holocaust victims are concerned, it is a highly debatable subject. Even those who fled the Nazis are counted as victims who perished at the hands of the Nazis. The numbers you cited here are fantastic to say the least for many neutral-minded people, let alone the Holocaust deniers or the revisionists...

...The Zionists have been trying their best for thought control of the world because this is the only way they can justify Israel and their mass murder and persecution of the Palestinians and also ferment trouble in the Middle East...

Leaving aside the fact that the numbers of Holocaust victims I cited in my retort to this despicable 'skinhead' was taken from the same source he quoted (Wikipedia), it is truly amazing that he gives as his 'personal opinion' that he is agnostic about whether the slaughter of millions of innocents actually took place...after careful study of all the evidence, no doubt...

Considering the absolutely exhaustive amount of research on the subject from countless disparate sources, these denier types obviously have not read or have willfully chosen to ignore the literature, eyewitness testimony, films, pictures, and especially official German military and civilian records on the subject. But prejudice, hate & intellectual dishonesty have always been immune to facts.--MrKen
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Some telling excerpts from today's NY Times obit...

Raul Hilberg, a Jewish émigré from Nazi-occupied Vienna who helped begin the field of Holocaust studies with his long and minutely detailed 1961 study of the massacre of European Jews, died Saturday in Williston, Vt. He was 81...

...In his landmark work, “The Destruction of the European Jews,” Mr. Hilberg said the Holocaust had been the result of a huge bureaucratic machine with thousands of participants, not the fulfillment of a preconceived plan or a single order by Hitler.

As uncountable separate instructions were passed on, formally and informally, to a range of actors that included train schedulers and gas chamber architects, responsibility became ever more diluted, he argued, even as the machinery of death churned inexorably ahead.

“For these reasons, an administrator, clerk or uniformed guard never referred to himself as a perpetrator,” Mr. Hilberg said in an interview with The Chicago Tribune in 1992. “He realized, however, that the process of destruction was deliberate, and that once he had stepped into this maelstrom, his deed would be indelible.”

Though some critics said Mr. Hilberg had understated the impact of historic German anti-Semitism, his broad conclusions were based on painstaking research. He examined microfilm of thousands upon thousands of prosaic documents like train schedules and memorandums between minor officials.

“This head-against-the-wall technique is the only virtue I can parade without blushing,” he said last year when Germany gave him with its Order of Merit, the highest tribute it can pay to someone who is not a German citizen...

...Holocaust historians of all views began using terminology Mr. Hilberg had devised, including that of calling the Holocaust’s principals perpetrators, victims and bystanders...

...At least five publishers rejected his major book. It was published by a small Chicago house after a wealthy patron agreed to buy 1,300 copies to go to libraries.

His caustic personal style, which contrasted with the monotone of his histories, did not always help. When academics asked about his subject area, Mr. Hilberg was prone to reply, “I study dead Jews.”

To read the complete obituary, please follow this link:
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/07/us/07hilberg.html?_r=1&oref=slogin



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