Jean-Claude Pressac's work on Auschwitz  [2] has been translated successively to German  [3] and to English  [4]. These two translations are rich in revelations both as to the work and as to the personality of J.-C. Pressac, pharmicist of La-Ville-du-Bois (Département of Essonne, France).

In the German translation, the author once more lowers his value for the death count at Auschwitz. In 1989, he set the count of gassing victims alone to between "1,000,000 and 1,500,000"  [5], which could lead one to suppose that he thinks the total number of deaths must be somewhere in the range 1,500,000 to 2,000,000. In 1993, in the work to which I responded, J.-C. Pressac reduced the total number of deaths to 775,000 (800,000 in round numbers), which included, he tells us, 630,000 Jewish gassing victims (Les Crématoires ..., p. 148). In my Réponse ..., I reported that this lowering of the count would probably be followed by a further lowering of the count. I wrote in a footnote:

I have been informed by a reliable source that I can not reveal that Pressac intends to reduce the total of deaths at Auschwitz to 700,000 — when he thinks the public is in the mood to accept a new reduction. (note 4 at the bottom of pages 13-14)

However, in the German translation J.-C. Pressac sets the number of deaths at Auschwitz at 630,000 to 710,000 — in round numbers — of which, he indicates, 470,000 to 550,000 were Jewish gassing victims. (Die Crematorien ..., p. 202).

The English translation is more interesting still. For one thing, it does not contain any estimate of the total number of deaths or of gassing victims!

I know, but again I cannot reveal my source, that J.-C. Pressac ran into difficulties in publishing his work in English in the United States. He was involved in some delicate negotiations with Michael Berenbaum, scientific director of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, which opened in Washington in April 1993. J.-C. Pressac, who tries to compensate for his weak character with a show of bravado, boasted that he would not "let himself be trifled with". However, the English translation, which appeared in July 1994, shows not only that "he let himself be trifled with" but that he consented to one of the worst humiliations that an author can suffer: the imposition of a tutor. They made him cut parts out of his work, substantially rewrite it and reduce it to the size of a chapter in a collective work, all under the supervision of an associate of Mr. Berenbaum. For one thing, he was forbidden to publish his own numbers for the total of deaths or gassing victims. Observe in what terms Mr. Berenbaum puts the pharmacist in his place. He writes as follows:

Robert-Jan Van Pelt has worked closely with Mr. Pressac to ensure that a technical article was clear and lucid as well as precise and informed by the latest scholarship. (Anatomy ..., p. xv)

Could it be any more clear that to Mr. Berenbaum's taste J.-C. Pressac's book in French (Les Crématoires ...) was confused, obscure, vague and insufficiently scholarly? Unfortunately, despite the efforts of R.-J. Van Pelt, J.-C. Pressac's text is as detestable in English as it was in French.

The collective version of this work in English (Anatomy ...) confirms that since 1982, J.-C. Pressac, who is fond of portraying himself as an independent researcher, has been in the pay of a wealthy Jewish foundation (the Beate Klarsfeld Foundation). Mr. Berenbaum writes:

Since 1982, the work of Mr. Pressac has been promoted and supported on a documentary, editorial and financial level by the Beate Klarsfeld Foundation. (p. xiii)

At the end of Alain Resnais' 1955 film Nuit et Brouillard (Night and Fog), which even today is constantly shown in all the schools of France, the number of deaths at Auschwitz is given as nine million: "9,000,000 dead haunt this countryside"!

However, ten years before, at the Nuremberg Trial, a document of which the Tribunal took "judicial notice" set this number at four million.

In 1989, J.-C. Pressac reduced the probable death count to a number between 1,500,000 and 2,000,000.

In 1993, he reduced the count to approximately 775,000.

In 1994, he went to a number between 630,000 and 710,000. Consequently, he has been silenced. And he accepts this silencing.

It is the Revisionists who will not be silent. They will persist in posing questions and in offering their answers:

1. What is the total number of deaths at Auschwitz? Is it nine million, as is even now taught to the children of France? Or is it rather 630,000, as J.-C. Pressac now thinks?

The Revisionists, research in hand, say the number is 150,000.

2. Why the persistent refusal to provide a physical description of a Nazi gas chamber, this fantastic chemical slaughterhouse using Prussic acid? Why are we never shown a photograph of the supposed homicidal gas chamber of Auschwitz I, which has been visited by millions of tourists to date? Why has the accusing party never dared to present us with an expert report on the weapon with which the supposed crime was done?

It is the Revisionists who have the arguments that show that most of the deaths at Auschwitz were due to epidemics and that it takes only a little common sense to see that these sites "in original condition", "reconstructed" or "in ruins" could never have been homicidal gas chambers but were ... ordinary cold rooms for keeping cadavers prior to cremation. And the Revisionists have the expert reports (reports by Leuchter, by Rudolf and by Lüftl and even the draft of a Polish report) to support their claims.

Only persons indifferent to facts and figures could claim that all this has no importance.

November 1994


1. Robert Faurisson, Réponse à Jean-Claude Pressac sur le problème des chambres a gaz, diffusion RHR, BP 122, 92704 Colombes Cedex), 1994, 96 pp.

2. Jean-Claude Pressac, Les Crématoires d'Auschwitz. La Machinerie du meurtre de masse, CNRS éditions, 1993, viii-156 pp. and 48 pp. photographic collection.

3. Jean-Claude Pressac, Die Crematorien von Auschwitz/Die Technik des Massenmordes, Munich/Zurich, Piper Verlag, 1994, xviii-211 pp.

4. Jean-Claude Pressac with Robert-Jan Van Pelt, "The Machinery of Mass Murder at Auschwitz", chapter 8 (pp. 183-245) of the collective work published by Yisrael Gutman and Michael Berenbaum, Anatomy of the Auschwitz Death Camp, published in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Indianapolis, Indiana University Press, 1994, xvi-638 pp.

5. Jean-Claude Pressac, Auschwitz: Technique and Operation of the Gas Chambers, New York, Beate Klarsfeld Foundation, 1989, pp. 553.

An earier German language version was published under the titel "Zur englischen Ausgabe von Pressacs neuestem Buch", in Herbert Verbeke (ed.) Auschwitz: Nackte Fakten, VHO, Berchem 1995, pp. 163f.

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