Auschwitz: The Dwindling Death Toll

It was not before 1989, that is 44 years after the liberation of the POW and concentration camp complex known as Auschwitz, that an international dispute started about the actual number of victims who had died in this camp complex. For 44 years, the Polish authorities and with them most of the world's mass media had been claiming that some four million inmates had perished there, but in 1989 they suddenly changed their minds and reduced this figure drastically. As a consequence, the memorial plates on display in the camp Auschwitz-Birkenau were removed in 1990, which had propagated the four million figure in many languages. Following this dispute, an investigative commission was formed to come up with a more acceptable number of victims.[1] When this commission published its results in summer of 1990, it was widely distributed by the international media.[2] The most astounding admission came perhaps from a prominent Polish journalist, who stated that the old, exaggerated figure was an "anti-fascist lie."[3] New memorial plates were installed in Auschwitz in 1995, claiming an alleged "final" victim count of 1.5 millions.

However, this "final" verdict did not end the controversy about the actual death toll of Auschwitz. In 1993 and 1994, the French pharmacist Jean-Claude Pressac, then promoted by the international media as the expert on technical questions surrounding Auschwitz, reduced this figure twice, first down to 800,000, then down to 700,000.[4] The next reduction down to some 550,000 followed in May 2002 by Fritjof Meyer, a leading journalist of Germany's biggest news magazine, the left-wing Der Spiegel. Meyer's article appeared in the German geopolitical magazine Osteuropa, which is published by the German Society for Eastern Europe under the directorship of Prof. Rita Süssmuth, who was once the president of the German parliament.

Since this periodical has a very small circulation, the article went largely unnoticed. Only a few German mainstream media took notice of it, so for example Sven Felix Kellerhoff in the daily newspaper Die Welt, who wrote on August 28, 2002: "[...] the Holocaust deniers and Auschwitz relativizers have a new chief witness." He criticizes Meyer's "flimsy evidence" which he uses for his calculations and that Meyer had selectively ignored evidence that does not fit into his way of arguing. It has some irony that Kellerhoff does not accuse Meyer of the crime of selectivity, but Meyer's adversaries, the Holocaust revisionists: "It is characteristic of Holocaust deniers that they selectively choose their evidence, considering only those arguments which support their viewpoint." Such turnabout criticism of Revisionists has a funny ring to it. Kellerhoff then describes Meyer as "an honorable man" whose article "in and of itself was well intended," but who now receives "approval from the wrong side", i.e., from "diehards and neo-Nazis." Other than that, Meyer's article had an echo only in small German right-wing publications.

The following articles will address the problem of the Auschwitz death toll. As an introduction, the first paper by Prof. Faurisson gives an overview of all major figures that were publicly promoted since the end of World War II. The next two papers critically review Meyer's article, and they refute Kellerhoff's above mentioned claim: It is not the Revisionists who practice selective consideration of evidence and accept only what fits into their world view.

How many deaths at Auschwitz?

By Dr. Robert Faurisson

Editor's Remark

When it comes to arguing about the correct number of victims of the concentration camp Auschwitz, many people often rely on usually unreliable newspaper articles written by journalists who hardly have any competence in the matter they are writing about. For this reason, Prof. Dr. Faurisson has compiled a list of figures on December 12, 1995, which does not depend on any newspaper articles, but on publications and public statements of individuals who are generally considered to have some kind of authority in this field, be it as historians or as witnesses.[5] This list has been updated by adding the most recent figure published in May 2002. However, this list which relies on 'expert' statements does not help to reduce the confusion either, and this does not shed a good light onto the experts' competence.

The Editor

Introductory Remarks

Among the historians who maintain the thesis according to which Auschwitz would have been an extermination camp, the main studies bearing on the number of the deaths in that camp are those of the Frenchman Georges Wellers published in 1983[6] and 1990,[7] and those of the Pole Franciszek Piper published in 1991,[8] 1992,[9] and 1994,[10] respectively.

Of these five studies, the most interesting are, for G. Wellers, that of 1983[6] and, for F. Piper, that of 1992.[9] The two authors proceed to the reminder--painful for them--of the "errors" committed in the past as to the number of the Auschwitz deaths. Regarding this, I recommend reading G. Wellers, op. cit. (note 6), 1983, pp. 138-139 and F. Piper, op. cit. (note 9), 1992, pp. 5-16. Nothing shows better than those pages to what extent, on nevertheless so grave a topic as this, the number of the deaths, the worst fancies were indulged in.

Number of Victims



persons according to the documentary film Nuit et Brouillard (Night and Fog, title used in the English-speaking world) (1955), whose historical advisers were the historian Henri Michel and the woman historian Olga Wormser-Migot[11]


persons according to the French War Crime Research Office and the French War Crime Information Service) (1945)[12]


persons according to Raphaël Feigelson (1945)[13]


Jews according to Tibère Kremer, writer of a foreword for Miklos Nyiszli (1951)[14]

5,000,000 to 5,500,000

persons according to Bernard Czardybon (1945), according to confessions attributed to some SS members and according to the newspaper Le Monde (1978), which was adding: "of whom 90% of Jews".[15]


persons according to Henryk Mandelbaum (1945)[16]


persons according to a Soviet document of which the Nuremberg tribunal took "judicial notice". This figure was inscribed nineteen times, with a commentary in as many different languages, on the Auschwitz-Birkenau monument. It was repeated by a sizable number of persons, including the Polish historian Franciszek Piper. It was to be declared false in 1990 and replaced, on the monument, in 1995, by the figure of 1,500,000 with the concurrence of the same F. Piper for whom this figure is a maximum while the minimum figure is of 1,100,000. According to Miriam Novitch (1967), of the 4,000,000 dead, 2,700,000 were Jewish. According to Rabbi Moshe Weiss (1991), more than 4,000,000 persons died at Auchwitz, of whom 3,000,000 were Jews.[17]


persons according to the Dictionnaire de la langue française, published by Hachette (1991). According to Claude Lanzmann (1980), there were 3,500,000 gassed of whom 95% of Jews as well as many other deaths[18]


persons until December 1st, 1943, according to a confession extorted from Rudolf Höß, ex-Commander of Auschwitz[19]


Jews gassed according to David Susskind (1986) and according to Heritage, the most inmportant Californian Jewish weekly (1993)[20]


persons according to Rudolf Vrba for the Eichmann trial (1961)[21]

2,000,000 (?) to 4,000,000 (?)

according to the historian Yehuda Bauer (1982)[22]

2,000,000 to 3,000,000

Jews killed as well as thousands of non-Jews according to a confession attributed to an SS in charge, Pery Broad[23]

2,000,000 to 2,500,000

persons killed according to a confession attributed to an SS physician, Dr. Friedrich Entress (1945)[24]


persons according to the historian Léon Poliakov (1951); according to the historian Georges Wellers (1973) and according to the woman historian Lucy Davidowicz (1975)[25]


persons according to the historian Yehuda Bauer (1989), of whom 1,352,980 Jews[26] (the latter figure is from Georges Wellers, 1983).


persons this figure, chosen by Lech Walesa, replaced, in 1995, on the Birkenau monument, that of 4,000,000 which had been withdrawn in 1990[27]


persons of whom 1,352,980 Jews, according to the historian Georges Wellers (1983)[28]


persons or so, of whom 1,000,000 Jews killed and more than 250,000 non-Jews dead, according to the historian Raul Hilberg.[29]

1,100,000 to 1,500,000

persons according to the historians Yisrael Gutman, Michael Berenbaum and Franciszek Piper (1994).[30]


persons according to Jean-Claude Pressac (1989) and according to the Dictionnaire des noms propres, published by Hachette (1992).[31]

800,000 to 900,000

persons according to the historian Gerald Reitlinger (1953).[32]

775,000 to 800,000

persons according to Jean-Claude Pressac (1993), of whom 630,000 were gassed Jews.[33]

630,000 to 710,000

persons according to Jean-Claude Pressac (1994), of whom from 470,000 to 550,000 were gassed Jews.[34]


persons according to Fritjof Meyer (2002), of whom 356.000 were gassed Jews.[35]

To my knowledge, the latter appraisal (510,000) is the lowest that those who believe in the physical extermination of the Jews ever provided. It is said sometimes that in 1946/1947, the Polish judicial authorities admitted the figure of 300,000 deaths.[36] That is an error. Those authorities estimated the total of the dead at 300,000 persons registered on their arrival, but, to that figure, they added the figure of 3,000,000 to 4,000,000 unregistered persons.[37]

During more than forty years, the Soviet, Polish and Federal Republic of Germany authorities showed themselves very discreet on the existence of death registers (Sterbebücher) which had been kept during the war by the Auschwitz camp authorities. Under the pressure of the revisionists, at the two Zündel trials (Toronto, 1985 and 1988) in particular, those authorities at long last made revelations on those registers. They assert having retrieved registers but for the period from July 27, 1941 to December 31, 1943. Since the camp was opened May 20, 1940 and as the Germans evacuated it January 18, 1945, that period represents a little more than half the duration of the camp's existence under their authority. The registers retrieved are, it appears, in the number of 46 and would include 69,000 names (and not 74,000 as was said by certain journalists).[38]

The supporters of the official version of the 'Holocaust' have experienced some discomfort facing the necessity, imposed by the revisionists, to revise downwards, in such proportions, the number of the Auschwitz deaths. How can it be explained that at the Nuremberg trial (1945-1946), such a deception had been taken straight off "judicial notice" of, thanks to Section 21 of that Tribunal's Charter? How can it be explained that, during official ceremonies, so many of this world's Greats, including Pope John Paul II, were asked to come and bow in front of such an invention of quacks? How can it be explained that in 1990, France equipped itself with an anti-revisionist law section forbidding any disputing of the "crimes against humanity" such as described and evaluated by the Nuremberg tribunal? And then, how can the figure of 5,000,000 to 6,000,000 Jews dead during the whole war be protected from any revision, if it was necessary to revise to that extent the figure of the deaths of Auschwitz?

Today, some Jews explain that the Poles, and they alone, would have invented the Auschwitz 4,000,000 lie. Actuated by anti-Semitism and nationalistic pride simultaneously, the Poles would have added to nearly 1,500,000 Jewish deaths about 2,500,000 Polish or other deaths![39]

This explanation is but a contrivance. The truth is that, as early as by the war's end, not only the Communistic Jews, but also the judicial authorities of Poland had been repeating that the majority of the Auschwitz deaths was Jewish. At Cracow, in 1946-1947, about the case of Rudolf Höß, the investigating magistrate as well as the prosecution had concluded that, besides a few hundred thousand "recorded" deaths, there had been at Auschwitz either 4,000,000 or at least 2,500,000 deaths, "most of them Jewish".[37]

Various numbers of victims of the Auschwitz concentration camp as claimed by official authorities and historians:
Second column from the right: the lowest estimate so far by Fritjof Meyer. Right-most column: maximum figure according to revisionist opinion (ca. 150,000). You have the free choice! At most one of these figures can be correct, but all the rest may potentially incite to hatred, and uttering them can lead to criminal prosecution in many European countries. But most importantly, it is considered highly offensive, if not outright illegal in those countries to make such compilations in the first place!

Besides, it should be noticed from the above list of various estimates that Jews themselves often gave numbers about their co-religionists' deaths at Auschwitz which are higher than 1,500,000. They have therefore no right to blame their own exaggerations on non-Jews.

During the winter of 1963-1964, a specific monument was built in memory of the "millions of Jews, martyrs and fighters" exterminated in that camp; the inscription was in Polish, in Yiddish and in Hebrew.[41] Let us add finally that, for the historians of the 'Holocaust,' most of the Auschwitz Jews would have been killed by means of an insecticide: Zyklon B.

For Arthur R. Butz and for other revisionists, the total number of the Auschwitz deaths must have risen to some 150,000, of whom about 100,000 Jews.[42] Most of the Jews were not killed but died, above all because of the typhus epidemics. The revisionists point out that, if the Germans had had at their disposal greater quantities of the Zyklon B insecticide precisely in order to fight those epidemics, fewer people would have died in Auschwitz not only among the Jews, the Poles, the Russians and other detainees, but also among the German physicians, guards, and other officials.

Summary and Conclusion

According to the view of the official historians (i.e., those who are protected by laws of the French Republic and other European nations and by the power of the media), the Auschwitz death toll varies between 9,000,000 (the number given in Nuit et Brouillard (Nicht and Fog), a movie which was compulsory teaching material for higher education in France since 1955) and 510,000 (this is the number estimated by a "leading editor" of Germany's largest news magazine Der Spiegel in the periodical Osteuropa in May 2002). According to these historians, those individuals have allegedly fallen victim to a policy of physical extermination. Revisionist authors, however, maintain that the number of victims is around 150,000, mainly caused by various epidemics, in particular typhus. Under the influence of revisionist authors, the court historians have started to make corrections of such a drastic nature that it is incomprehensible how France or any other European nation can dictate this number by law. The two official inscriptions on the memorial at Auschwitz-Birkenau, which followed each other--the first until 1990, the second since 1995--are of great instructive value, though certainly without intention: They remind us that there should not be an officially decreed truth, neither in history nor elsewhere.

Nota Bene

This study constitutes but a sketch of the answers given or imposed to the question: "How many deaths at Auschwitz?" It would be easy to provide thousands of other references. The work's difficulty consists, however, in that, according to the case, the evaluations can bear on very ill-assorted categories: in one case, the number of the "killed", of the "gassed", of the "Jews" is evaluated and, in some other case, "deaths", "victims" are talked about and the "Jews" are not distinguished from the "non-Jews". Sometimes too, the evaluations are only about a limited period. As far as I am concerned, I avoided any numerical extrapolation from a figure given for a short period of the Auschwitz camp's life.


© 18.12.1995; first published in Vierteljahreshefte für freie Geschichtsforschung 3(3) (1999), pp. 268-272; updated in late 2002.

[1]Cf. for this "Commission try to defuse Auschwitz controversy", The Canadian Jewish News, Oct. 3, 1990, p. 5.
[2]Daily press of July 18, 1990, e.g.: Krzysztof Leski, Ohad Gozani, "Poland reduces Auschwitz death toll estimate to 1 million," London Daily Telegraph, July 18, 1990; UPI, "Poland lowers Auschwitz toll", Toronto Sun, July 18, 1990. In Germany, it was the left-wing radical daily newspaper die tageszeitung which published the lowest new victim figure on July 18, 1990: 960.000.
[3]"'Ich empfinde Verlegenheit.' Der polnische Publizist Ernest Skalski über die neue Auschwitz-Diskussion in Warschau" ("I feel embarrassed." the Polish author Ernest Skalski about the new Auschwitz discussion in Warsaw), Der Spiegel no. 30 (1990), p. 111.
[4]See the article below, in particular notes 33 and 34.
[5]Among the historians who maintain the thesis according to which Auschwitz would have been an extermination camp, the main studies bearing on the number of the deaths in that camp are those of the Frenchman Georges Wellers published in 1983 and 1990 and those of the Pole Franciszek Piper published in 1991, 1992 and 1994, respectively:
Georges Wellers, "Essai de détermination du nombre des morts au camps d'Auschwitz"(Attempt at determining the number of the deaths at the Auschwitz camp), Le Monde juif, October-December 1983, pp. 17-159; "A propos du nombre de morts au camp d'Auschwitz" (About the number of deaths at the Auschwitz camp), Le Monde juif, October-December 1990, pp.187-195; Franciszek Piper, "Estimating the Number of Deportees to and Victims of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Camp," Yad Vashem Studies, XXI (1991), pp. 40-103. The latter study, corrected and enlarged, was published as a brochure in the English language printed in Poland: Auschwitz/How Many Perished/Jews, Poles, Gypsies..., Printed in Poland by Poligrafia ITS, 30-306, Krakow, 1992, 68 p.
One can also consult: "The Number of Victims," in Yisrael Gutman, Michael Berenbaum (ed.), Anatomy of the Auschwitz Death Camp, published in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Bloomington and Indianapolis, Indiana University Press, 1994, pp. 61-80. Of these five studies, the most interesting are, for G. Wellers, that of 1983 and, for F. Piper, that of 1992. The two authors proceed to the reminder--painful for them--of the "errors" committed in the past as to the number of the Auschwitz deaths. Regarding this, I recommend reading G. Wellers, op. cit., 1983, pp. 138-139 and F. Piper, op. cit., 1992, pp. 5-16. Nothing shows better than those pages to what extent, on nevertheless so grave a topic as this, the number of the deaths, the worst fancies were indulged in.
[6]Georges Wellers, "Essai de détermination du nombre des morts au camps d'Auschwitz" (Attempt at determining the number of the deaths at the Auschwitz camp), Le Monde juif, October-December 1983, pp. 17-159.
[7]Georges Wellers, "A propos du nombre de morts au camp d'Auschwitz" (About the number of deaths at the Auschwitz camp), Le Monde juif, October-December 1990, pp. 187-195.
[8]Franciszek Piper, "Estimating the Number of Deportees to and Victims of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Camp," Yad Vashem Studies, XXI (1991), pp. 40-103.
[9]The latter study, corrected and enlarged, was published as a brochure in the English language printed in Poland: Franciszek Piper, Auschwitz/How Many Perished/Jews, Poles, Gypsies..., Printed in Poland by Poligrafia ITS, 30-306, Krakow, 1992, 68 p.
[10]Franciszek Piper, "The Number of Victims," in Yisrael Gutman, Michael Berenbaum (ed.), Anatomy of the Auschwitz Death Camp, published in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Bloomington and Indianapolis, Indiana University Press, 1994, pp. 61-80.
[11]Nuit et Brouillard, a 32 minute film in black and white untiringly spread in all of France's colleges and other secondary schools as well as on French television over the last forty years. Director: Alain Resnais. Historical advisors: Henri Michel (Chairman of the World War II History Committee) and Olga Wormser-Migot. Text: Jean Cayrol. 1956 Jean Vigo Award. In that film, it is said that "nothing distinguished the gas [singular] chamber from an ordinary block." The concrete ceiling of the "gas chamber" is shown in it "ploughed up by the fingernails" and it is added about this: "even the concrete was getting torn up." It is asserted there that, with the bodies, "manufacturing soap is intended." "As to the skin" of the bodies , the image shows us that the Germans were tanning it. Those stories of scratched concrete, of human soap and of skin tanned by the Germans are of the order of the myth. With the camera lingering on the Birkenau landscape, the commentator says: "Nine million dead are haunting this landscape." This sentence is uttered towards the end of the film.
[12]Jacques Billiet, Director of the War Crime Information Service, Documents pour servir à l'histoire de la guerre / Camps de concentration (Documents to be used for the war's history/Concentration camps), Office français d'édition, 1945, p. 7 (J. Billiet himself) as well as p. 196 (Series of reports of the War Crime Search Office; these same reports evaluate at 26,000,000 the number of prisoners of war as well as of the political detainees having died in all the camps of Germany and of the occupied territories, p. 197). This work was written by Eugene Aroneanu.
[13]Ibid., p. 196.
[14]"6,000,000 innocents went through the chimneys of the ovens of Auschwitz because one of their close or remote forerunners was of the Israelite religion" writes Tibère Kremer in his preface to a text attributed to Dr. Miklos Nyiszli, "SS Obersturmführer Docteur Mengele / Journal d'un médecin déporté au crématorium d'Auschwitz" (SS Obersturmführer Doctor Mengele / Diary of a physician deported to the crematorium of Auschwitz), Les Temps modernes, March 1951, p. 1655.
[15]Bernard Czardybon at the Cracow R. Höß trial, according to F. Piper, op. cit., (note 9), pp. 7f. For the confessions attributed to some SS, ibid., p. 8. "Auschwitz, where perished more than five million men, women and children, of whom 90% of Jews" in "Manifestation du souvenir à Paris devant le mémorial du martyr juif inconnu" (Remembrance demonstration at Paris in front of the unknown Jewish martyr's memorial), Le Monde, April 20, 1978.
[16]Henryk Mandelbaum at the Cracow R. Höß trial, according to F. Piper, op. cit., (note 9), p. 7.
[17]From 1945 to 1990, it is this figure of 4,000,000 that was enforced as if by law. It emanated from a Soviet document dated May 6, 1945. The document was taken "judicial notice" of by the Nuremberg Tribunal, thanks to Section 21 of that Tribunal's Charter. It appears at pages 241-261 of volume 39 of the official proceedings and documents of the Procès des grands criminels de guerre devant le tribunal militaire international, Nuremberg 14 novembre 1945-1er octobre 1946, published, for the French version, at Nuremberg, Germany, from 1947 to 1949; that is to say TMI XXXIX, pp. 241-261; official English edition: official proceedings and documents of the Trial of the Major War Criminals before The International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, 14 November 1945 - 1 October 1946: IMT XXXIX, pp. 241-261. The Russian original was translated into German and it was that translation in German which was reproduced in the French edition. The summation, in French, placed at the top of the document, states among other things: "More than 4,000,000 million human beings brought from the countries occupied by Germany were killed in the [Auschwitz extermination] camp, most gassed as early as on arrival." (p. 241). In fact, the document itself states, in German: "No fewer than 4,000,000" (p. 261). On p. 241 of IMT, XXXIX official English edition: "Over 4 million people from the countries occupied by Germany were killed in Auschwitz, in most cases by gas immediately after their arrival." For the considerable number of persons who reiterated on their own that figure of 4,000,000 or of about 4,000,000, one can, to start with, refer to the names of the former detainees Shlomo Dragon, Henry Tauber, Erwin Olszowka, of the investigating magistrate Jan Sehn, of the prosecution attorney Pechalski, of the Professor-Engineer Roman Dawidowski, of the judges of the of Supreme National Tribunal of Poland, of prosecution attorneys of American military tribunals, of all kinds of authors or historians and of people in charge of the Auschwitz State Museum such as Kazimierz Smolen, Danuta Czech, and Franciskek Piper (according to F. Piper, op. cit., (note 9), pp. 7-8, 12-14). Miriam Novitch: "Of the 4,000,000 victims of Auschwitz, 2,700,000 were Jews and 1,300,000 were non-Jews", in: La Vérité sur Treblinka (The Truth on Treblinka), Israel, Beth Lohamet, 1967, p. 39. Rabbi Dr. Moshe Weiss, Former Vice President Mizrachi-Hapoel Hamizrachi: "More than 4,000,000 people perished [in Auschwitz]; almost 3,000,000 of them were Jews", in: "Yom HaShoah-Holocaust Remembrance", The Jewish Press, April 5, 1991.
[18]Willy nilly, the lawyers of the defendants of the Nuremberg trial often took the same side as the prosecution. Thus was it, for instance, that Dr. Gustav Steinbauer, lawyer of Arthur Seyss-Inquart, declared July 19, 1946 before the tribunal: "Auschwitz engulfed, alone, 3,500,000 human beings, men, women and children" (TMI, XIX, p. 55; Auschwitz alone has swallowed up 3 1/2 million people - men, women and children. IMT, XIX, p. 48). "Auschwitz: [...] a great extermination camp where perished about 3,500,000 Jews and Poles between 1940 and 1945," Dictionnaire de la langue française, Hachette, 1991, 1430 pp. The following year, the Hachette publishing house reduced that figure to 1,000,000 (see note 31). "It is not possible to give to the thousand the exact number of those who perished in the Birkenau gas chambers (the most serious valuations hover around 3,500,000), but by extermination must be meant essentially the Jewish people's. Ninety-five percent of Birkenau's gassed were Jews [...]. Many [other detainees] still lost their life [...]" (Preface of Claude Lanzmann to Filip Müller, Trois ans dans une chambre à gaz d'Auschwitz (Three years in an Auschwitz gas chamber), Pygmalion/Gérard Watelet, 1980, p. 12.
[19]On April 5, 1946, Rudolf Höß, the first of the three successive commanders of Auschwitz, signed in his Nuremberg jail, for the American Lieutenant-Colonel Smith W. Brookhart, Jr., an affidavit in English where he stated : "I commanded Auschwitz until 1 December, 1943, and estimate that at least 2,500,000 victims were executed and exterminated there by gassing and burning, and at least another half million succumbed to starvation and disease, making a total dead of about 3,000,000" (doc. PS-3868). Ten days later, the American associate trial counsel, Colonel John Harlan Amen, read to him before the tribunal excerpts from document PS-3868, including the above excerpt, and asked him: "Is all that true, Witness?" R. Höß answered: "Ja, es stimmt" (Yes, it is accurate) (TMI, XI, p. 426, IMT, XI, p. 415: Yes, it is). R. Höß had been tortured. It was necessary to wait until 1983 to obtain, from one of his torturers' (Jews belonging to the British Military Security) very mouth, the circumstances and the detail of the tortures: Rupert Butler, Legions of Death, London, Arrow Books, 1983, page of the Acknowledgements and pp. 234-238. On this point and on the manipulations and trickeries which the texts attributed to R. Höß received from the American prosecution as well as on related revelations, see R. Faurisson , "Comment les Britanniques ont obtenu les aveux de Rudolf Höß, commandant d'Auschwitz", Annales d'histoire révisionniste, spring 1987, pp. 137-152 or "How the British Obtained the Confessions of Rudolf Höß," The Journal of Historical Review, Winter 1986-1987, pp. 389-403. Until these last few years, R. Höß was held by the majority of the historians of the 'Holocaust' for the no. 1 witness of the Auschwitz crimes (homicidal gassings and number of the victims). In 1993, one of those historians, the American professor Christopher Browning, requested by a Jewish British journalist to give his opinion on R. Faurisson's article, finally answered: "Höß was always a very weak and confused witness." The same professor was not hesitating to conclude: "The revisionists use him all the time for this reason, in order to try and discredit the memory of Auschwitz as a whole" (Christopher Hitchens, "Whose History is it?", Vanity Fair, December 1993, p. 117). R. Höß gave many other estimations than that of 3,000,000 deaths until December 1st, 1943.
[20]"When you quote the figure of 1,500,000 Jews, there again you falsify figures. It was 3,000,000 Jews that were exterminated at Auschwitz- Birkenau" David Susskind, President of the Brussels Jewish secular community center, letter published in Le Nouvel Observateur, May 30, 1986, p. 29. In an editorial on the matter of the Auschwitz Carmelites, Heritage, the Californian largest Jewish weekly, asserts: "[...] huge quantities of poisonous Zyklon B pellets [...] ended the lives of some Three Million Jews at Auschwitz" (June 7, 1993). The assertion proves the indifference of that Jewish weekly's writers to the fact that, for three years already, the world press, as a whole, had revealed that such a figure was constituting an enormous exaggeration.
[21]"Consequently, on the basis of my calculations the final death roll in Concentration Camp Auschwitz was 2,500,000": this is what stated under oath Rudolf Vrba July 16, 1961, at Israel's embassy in London for the Eichmann trial at Jerusalem. R. Vrba had the cheek to add that this figure catches up that given by R. Höß at the Nuremberg trial, while the latter had reckoned the number of the deaths at 3,000,000 until December 1st, 1943, without providing an evaluation for the following fourteen months. R. Vrba added: "Thus my estimations of the death roll in Auschwitz, and the estimations of the death roll made by Rudolf Höß, though made independently of each other and using different methods, were nevertheless in good agreement": Rudolf Vrba and Alan Bestic, I cannot Forgive, New York, Bantam, 1964, pp. 269-272.
[22]It is likely that, for the historian Yehuda Bauer, the total of the dead of Auschwitz is of 2,000,000 to 4,000,000 given that he wrote, in 1982, about the sole gassed ones: "Between April 1942 and November 1944, in addition to the Soviet POWs, the gas extinguished the lives of probably up to 2,000 gypsies [in 1944], a few hundred more Soviet POWs, and between 1,500,000 and 3,500,000 Jews" A History of the Holocaust, New York, Franklin Watts, 1982, p. 215. In 1989, that is to say seven years later, Y. Bauer evaluated the total of the dead (gassed or not gassed) at 1,600,000 of whom 1,352,980 Jews (see note 26).
[23]The SS sergeant Pery Broad, member of the Political Section (called "Gestapo") of the camp, is supposed to have written: "2,000,000 to 3,000,000 were put to death [at Auschwitz]! Besides thousands of Poles, Russians, Czechs, Yugoslavs, etc." ("Erinnerungen von Broad", KL Auschwitz in den Augen der SS, Verlag des Staatlichen Auschwitz-Museums, 1973, p. 141.
[24]"An SS physician, Friedrich Entress, who served as the camp doctor in 1942-1943, stated that, in his view, 2,000,000 to 2,500,000 people were killed in Auschwitz", F. Piper, op. cit., (note 9), p. 8.
[25]"Out of prudence, we are therefore going to settle for the figure of 2,000,000 [deaths at Auschwitz]", Léon Poliakov, Bréviaire de la haine, Calmann-Lévy, 1974 [1951], p. 496 (in English: Harvest of Hate). "[...] the exact number of the Jews assassinated in the gas chambers on alighting from the trains shall never be known. The prudent estimate is of the order of 2,000,000..." (Georges Wellers, L'Étoile jaune à l'heure de Vichy / De Drancy à Auschwitz, Fayard, 1973, p. 290; since this estimation bears but on the number (1) of the Jews, (2) gassed, (3) on their arrival, it is probable that for the author the total number of the persons dead at any moment and for any reason is well beyond the figure of 2,000,000; ten years later, this total number was evaluated by the same author at fewer than 1,500,000 persons (see note 28). For Lucy Dawidowicz, the figure of 2,000,000 seams to be that of the Jews gassed: The War against the Jews / 1933-1945, New York, Holt, 1975, pp. 149-149.
[26]"There were never four million victims in Auschwitz [...]. The total number of people who died there [...] was in the neighborhood of 1,600,000 [...]. The figure for Jews murdered by gassing is 1,323,000, with 29,980 dying in the camp", Yehuda Bauer, "Auschwitz and the Poles / Fighting the distortions", The Jerusalem Post, September 22, 1989, p. 6. The author says that he is here taking into account the estimations of G. Wellers in 1983 but he transformed the total of 1,471, 595 (G. Wellers' figure) into ... 1,600,000! For his own estimation in 1982, see note 22.
[27]Until April 3, 1990, the commemorative plates of Auschwitz-Birkenau were bearing: "Here, from 1940 to 1945, 4 million men, women and children were tortured and assassinated by the Hitlerite genocides". The new text, developed after years of tergiversations, is the following: "May this place where the Nazis assassinated 1,500,000 men, women and children, a majority of them Jews from diverse European countries, be forever for mankind a cry of despair and of warning", Luc Rosenzweig, "Auschwitz, la Pologne et le génocide" (Auschwitz, Poland and the genocide), Le Monde, January 27, 1995, p. 1.
[28]G. Wellers, op. cit., (note 6). To be compared with the same author's evaluation in 1973 (see note 25).
[29]"Auschwitz [...] Number [of Jews] Killed: 1,000,000 [...]. The number of non-Jews who died in Auschwitz may be estimated on the basis of registrations and transfers at more than 250,000. Most were Poles", Raul Hilberg, The Destruction of the European Jews, New York, Holmes and Meier, 1985, p. 895. For R. Hilberg, it seems that the Jews be always "killed" while the non-Jews are simply "dead".
[30]"At least 1,500,000 people were murdered at Auschwitz-Birkenau" (p. 11). "At least 1,100,000 persons were killed or died in the camp. But if this number is regarded as a minimum estimate, what figure can we accept as a hypothetical ceiling? [...] about 1,350,000 [Jews], with the total number of Auschwitz victims reaching about 1,500,000" (pp. 71f.). The sentence from page 11 appears on a map inserted in a chapter signed by Yisrael Gutman, "Auschwitz--An Overview". The sentences from pages 71f. appear in a chapter signed by Franciszek Piper, "The Number of Victims", Yisrael Gutman, Michael Berenbaum (ed.), Anatomy of the Auschwitz death Camp, op. cit., (note 10). Previously, for F. Piper, the number of the Auschwitz deaths was of 4,000,000 (see note 17).
[31]"The figure of 4,000,000 victims is now regarded as 'emotional' and should really [be] more in the order of 1,000,000", Jean-Claude Pressac, Auschwitz: Technique and Operation of the Gas Chambers, New York, Beate Klarsfeld Foundation, 1989, p. 264. "Auschwitz [...] where perished about 1,000,000 Jews and Poles between 1940 and 1945", Le Dictionnaire des noms propres, Hachette, 1992. For J.-C. Pressac's evaluation in 1993, see note 31 and, for his evaluation in 1994, see note 34. For the evaluation of a dictionary published by Hachette in 1991, see note 18.
[32]"The stark and inescapable fact that 800,000 to 900,0000 human beings perished in Auschwitz, its gas chambers and its camps", Gerald Reitlinger, The Final Solution, London, Sphere Books, 1971 [1953], p. 500.
[33]"Total of the deaths: 775,000 (but this figure can be attended with gaps. This is why the global figure of 800,000 victims should be retained currently", Jean-Claude Pressac, Les Crématoires d'Auschwitz / La Machinerie du meurtre de masse, éditions du CNRS, 1993, p. 148. For the evaluation of J.- C. Pressac in 1989, see note 31 and, for his evaluation in 1994, see note 34.
[34]"Total of the deaths: 631,000-711,000; [...] the number of the victims is evaluated at 630,000 to 710,000"; translation in German of the work referred to just above: Die Krematorien von Auschwitz / Die Technik des Massenmordes, Munich, Piper, 1994, p. 202. For J.-C. Pressac's evaluation in 1989, see note 31 and, for his evaluation in 1994, see note 34.
[35]"Not too far away from this [Pressac's latest figures] is the result of this study with presumed 510,000 deaths, 356,000 of which were probably murdered in the gas.", Fritjof Meyer, "Die Zahl der Opfer von Auschwitz. Neue Erkenntnisse durch neue Archivfunde" (Number of Auschwitz Victims: New Insights from Recent Archival Discoveries), Osteuropa, 52(5) (2002), pp. 631-441, here p. 640.
[36]This figure is mentioned in the German news reel Welt im Film, no. 137, Jan. 8, 1948. It incorrectly quotes the verdict of the Polish trial against several SS men who worked at the Auschwitz camp during the war. Where the verdict mentions 300,000 registered victims plus three to four million unregistered victims, the film footage mentions 300,000 victims in general.
[37]See F. Piper, op. cit. (note 9), pp. 12f.
[38]Staatliches Museum Auschwitz-Birkenau (ed.), Sterbebücher von Auschwitz / Death Books from Auschwitz /Ksiegi zgonow z Auschwitz, 3 Vols., Saur, Munich 1995.
[39]In 1983, G. Wellers was ascribing this lie or this error of spectacular dimensions neither to the Poles, nor to the Russians, nor to the Communists. He was writing: "Depuis quelques années, ayant compris les difficultés de ce problème, et ayant retrouvé la lucidité du jugement, on évite d'avancer des chiffes, mais on sait que 4,000,000 de morts à Auschwitz est un chiffre exagéré, dû au traumatisme, au choc naturel, inévitable qui dominait le psychisme des survivants pendant les premières années après la fin de la guerre, après la fin de leur cauchemar", G. Wellers, op. cit., (note 6). pp. 138f.). G. Wellers was therefore questioning the "survivors," while forgetting to remind us of his own 1973 "prudent estimation" (see note 25). In 1989, Yehuda Bauer accused the "official Polish propagandists;" he said that "some Poles disseminate the wrong figures [...] in order to create a national myth;" he denounced "the Poles' concept of themselves as the crucified nation, the real sufferers of Europe": "Auschwitz and the Poles / Fighting the Distortions," The Jerusalem Post, September 22, 1989, p. 6. "The figure propagated by the Communist regime was that 2,000,000 Jews and 2,000,000 non-Jews, mainly Poles, were killed"; Ben Helfgott, Chairman of Yad Vashem Charitable Trust, London, The Independent, 3 August 1990. "The communists tried to 'de-Judaize' Auschwitz [...] said Lerman who is also a member of the International Council of the State Museum of Auschwitz"; "The Polish communist's false Auschwitz story," The Philadelphia Inquirer, March 29, 1992, pp. A1, 10. Luc Rosenzweig implicates "the National-Communist Vulgate"; "Auschwitz, la Pologne et le génocide," Le Monde, January 27, 1995, p. 1.
[40]Data taken from the table of this article.
[41]"In memory of the millions of Jews martyrs and fighters exterminated at the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp by the Hitlerian race murderers, 1940-1945". That inscription was appearing on a monument built, according to J.-C. Pressac, during the winter of 1963-1964 and subsequently(?) removed (J.-C. Pressac, op. cit. (note 31), pp. 262-263.
[42]"I feel reasonably secure in placing the total in the range 100,000- 150,000, probably closer to the former [...]. The number of Jewish deaths of natural causes at Auschwitz seems less than 100,000", Arthur R. Butz's review of Why Did the Heavens not Darken? The "Final Solution" in History, by Arno J. Mayer, The Journal of Historical Review, Fall 1989, pp. 369-370); see also "Some Thoughts on Pressac's Opus / A Response to a Major Critique of Holocaust Revisionism", ibid, May/June 1993, p. 26.

Source: The Revisionist 1(1) (2003), pp. 17-23.

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