HISTORICAL NEWS AND COMMENT
The Holocaust in Perspective
A Letter by Paul Rassinier
Paul Rassinier is the generally acknowledged founder of scholarly holocaust revisionism. Born in France in 1906 and trained as an educator, he taught history and geography at the secondary school in Faubourg de Montbéliard.
During the Second World War, he co-founded the "Libé-Nord" underground Resistance organization, which helped smuggle Jews from German-occupied France into Switzerland. As a result, he was arrested by the Gestapo in October 1943 and deported to Germany, where he was held prisoner until the end of the war in the Buchenwald and Dora concentration camps.
After returning home, the French government recognized his courage and suffering with the highest decoration awarded for Resistance activities. Rassinier was also elected to the French National Assembly as a deputy of the Socialist party (SFIO).
Rassinier was profoundly distressed by the many lies and myths about the concentration camps that were being circulated. Accordingly, until his death in July 1967, he sought to set the record straight in a series of books about his camp experiences and Germany's wartime Jewish policy.
A collection of his most important writings on the Holocaust issue has been published in English translation by the IHR under the title The Holocaust and the Lies of Ulysses. (A new IHR edition of this collection is available from the IHR for $12, plus $2 shipping. Stock No. 0689.)
What motivated this stalwart Frenchman who, in spite of internment and privation in German concentration camps, all but absolved Germany's leaderhsip of the alleged crime of genocide? What did he really think about the Third Reich and National Socialism?
Rassinier helps to answer these questions in the following letter, which was provided by Mr. Myron Kok and is published here in English translation for the first time.
May 8, 1965
Thank you for your letter of May 3, 1965.
No, I am not a supporter of National Socialism: Iam a socialist in the historical and doctrinal sense of the word, and this has absolutely nothing to do with the interpretation which is given to it at present by the leaders of parties, incorrectly called socialist. If, therefore, I do not support National Socialism, this is simply a philosophical attitude: The Führerprinzip [leadership principle] does not attract me; I am not only a socialist, but also a democrat. However, when I correct the vulgar errors of the hysterical adversaries of Nazism, I do so because, although I am a Frenchman, I am also a European: these vulgar errors, committed with malice aforethought, have no other aim than to exclude Germany from the community of European nations and to abort the birth of Europe, something that is impossible without Germany or, indeed, any other country on our continent.
In the twentieth century, the quarrel between Germany and the other European nations is a resurrection of the quarrel between the Armagnacs and the Brugundians or between the Guelphs and the Ghibellines. It is maintained at fever pitch by Bolshevism, which is the modern version of Pan-Slavism, and it aims at the subversion of Europe, a subversion against which Germany is our only shield. In 1965, the Slavs, who had been driven back by Charlemagne beyond the Vistual, are 50 kilometers from Hamburg. If they can engineer the collapse of Germany, they will, tomorrow, be in Brest and Bayonne. The lies which the Press pours out over Germany in a never ending stream must serve as their moral justification.
It is my intention to wring from public opinion the admission that, in the war of 1939-1945, Englishmen, Russians, Frenchmen and Americans committed crimes just as horrible and in just as great a number as those attributed to the Germans whose real crimes are, however, very much open to dispute. I also wish to have it conceded that it is immoral to investigate merely German war criminals, especially when the criminal nature of their behavior has been exaggerated, as has indeed been the case. I believe that, after a war, there should be a general amnesty for all combatants because this is the only way to bring about an atomosphere of peace between the nations, and to avoid future wars. There is, of course, the Communist danger, as well, which can only be warded off by a Europe, united in mutual and brotherly goodwill.
That is my point of view: it defines my intentions. And it has, furthermore, the advantage of being based on a search for historic truth, beyond the rancors of outmoded nationalism.
With my best wishes,
Source: Reprinted from The Journal of Historical Review, vol. 12, no. 1, pp. 99-107.
Published with permission of and courtesy to the Institute for Historical Review (IHR).
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