2008 Christmas Greetings from Fredrick Töben
Prior to my becoming a POM, prisoner of Her Majesty, during October and November 2008, I had spent a day with Willis Carto, that American octogenarian who has towered over the Revisionists as the man-behind-the scene for more than half a century.
Willis has now reached the point where he confesses that in his twilight years he can’t do anything else but to continue the work he began so many years ago. I said to him that I wanted to get away from the Holocaust-Shoah rubbish because it’s a death cult which does not imbue anyone with any life-giving impulses.
Not even the so-called Holocaust survivors seem to like their role, especially when the material benefits that come with it stop to flow, i.e. when Germany refuses to pay any more reparations.
One of my new maxims that kept me sane while resting for 50 days was: “It, too, will pass”, and that came directly from Willis Carto who, together with his wife Elisabeth, have had to endure the sniping of the enemy from without as well as from within.
Hence my September-December 2008 trip overseas aimed to broaden my perspective by writing a book about an 85-year-old man in South Africa who is a direct descendant of Napoleon’s wife. Willis saw the sense in this because that has also been his aim – to focus on more important issues than just this Holocaust-Shoah issue as his The Barnes Review magazine illustrates, much as Horst Mahler has been pushing the legal limits of the enshrined Holocaust dogma by extending its concept into a full-blown political perspective – Germans who still want to be Germans! That there are Germans who still want to be Germans came to the fore with Dirk Zimmermann who, on the day Sylvia Stolz’s trial began, walked into his local police station to enact a Selbstanzeige – self-indictment/self-accusation.
He states that he could not tolerate it anymore to witness the injustices facing even barristers defending their clients in court when they, too, are charged under Section 130, thereby obstructing them in their exercise of their legal duties.
And so Dirk Zimmermann, a 36-year-old happily married family man, began his challenge of Section 130 of the Criminal Code that prohibits doubting the legally-sanctioned Holocaust-Shoah narrative. He sent Germar Rudolf's Lectures on the Holocaust to three German public figures, then turned himself in to the police for having violated Section 130. Eight months ago I placed his talk on YouTube and am happy to report that to date http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72dHps9pYSc it has had 18,214 hits.
This action is a conscious act because Zimmermann demands he has a right to doubt, and seeing Sylvia Stolz on 14 January 2008 carried out of court and imprisoned for three and a half years confirmed that he had morally, socially and legally acted correctly. To date legal officials have not as yet acted on his matter, but in this respect Kevin Käther has had more success.
The Berlin public prosecutor has taken Mr Käther to court giving Mr Käther the opportunity to use arguments that challenge the obviousness of the Holocaust-judicial notice, whereby judges refuse to look into the factual matters, much like my Judge Landau did when he began my August 5-7 2008 trial with the statement: ‘It is not for me to find whether the Holocaust happened or not’! – see Newsletter 424.
And there is also the other side of the coin as the following reports clarify how difficult it is to get unbiased coverage in the world media. The Holocaust dogma is firmly anchored within financial parameters and like the car industry today needs to be propped up with extraordinary measures in order to survive the scrutiny of Revisionists. In this battle Revisionists also have to overcome victors’ justice!
The various articles covering my London trial reveal what forces/interests we have to overcome in order to see clearly that ‘nation-denial’ is another hurdle we are confronting, and surprisingly Melani Phillips in her article, below, sees the dangers that my case highlighted: “It is not bigots like Fredrick Toben who pose the biggest threat to our freedom, but the EU and its incendiary doctrine of nation-denial”.
Then, the report on the conference at the University of Marburg details how an eye witness found first evidence for Holocaust! Let’s briefly reflect on this: almost three-score-and-ten years later there is still 1. No evidence of the murder weapon, 2. No written order that started the alleged extermination process and 3. No justification for claiming that six million Jews were exterminated.
In similar fashion to what we are doing, the Honourable Louis Farrakhan, of the Nation of Islam, exposes and spells out some unpleasant historical facts at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OLxQ1gQnStA and
I am still recovering somewhat from the 50 days away from home and a lot of work still awaits my attention, especially the next book cries out to be written. The title is already half-fixed: A POM FOR 50 DAYS.
Once again let me repeat my gratitude, as expressed on our Adelaide Institute website on 6 December 2008, to all who helped make my important London mission a success: Thank you to all those individuals who publicised my imprisonment in emails, newsletters, on websites, at public meetings, wrote letters to judges, politicians and media commentators, and to me personally in prison. It all helped to spread the cause of freedom of expression without which life is not worth living.
Somewhat flippantly I stated to a friend that I was merely the right man at the right time to push the cause a little further, and I think the London outcome has Holocaust enforcers worried.
Especially before the final outcome in the Australian Jewish News I noted commentators already speculated how my almost certain German imprisonment would impact on my case in Australia.
Well, at least it’s official and the world media ran the headline: ‘Töben flees UK after winning extradition fight’. But what a lot of nonsense this suggestion is because I have no fear!
Public Prosecutor Andreas Grossman gloated he would have me in Mannheim at the beginning of 2009, and I say let him bring it on because I can then reveal to the world his moral and intellectual bankruptcy, that he is someone who is a legend in his own mind, a bureaucrat who dines on mere puffery - crudely, an underachiever who is able to exercise some power that is at the pinnacle of moral decline, is life-denying and full of self-deception/false consciousness. ‘Herr Grossmann, strengen Sie sich an, werden Sie ein Mann!‘
Were it not for your support, then of course I don’t think I would still be doing this kind of work. For that continued support I thank you and until January 2009 all the very best to you for this Christmas and New Year festive season.
Australian 'Holocaust denier ' arrested at Heathrow claims he is victim of witch-hunt
By James Slack Last updated at 5:04 PM on 02nd October 2008
Holocaust denier Dr Frederick Töben, who was arrested at Heathrow airport
A leading holocaust denier who runs a website insisting the Nazis did not murder millions of Jews will face an extradition hearing tomorrow after being arrested as he flew into Britain. Dr Fredrick Töben was seized at Heathrow at the request of the German authorities for publishing 'anti-Semitic and/or revisionist' material between 2000 and 2004.
Dr Töben - who claims to be facing a 'witch-trial' - has committed no crime in Britain, where Holocaust denial is not an offence. But, under the terms of a European Arrest Warrant designed to fast-track extraditions, the Australian citizen can be held in the UK pending possible deportation to Germany - where he faces five years in prison.
Crown Prosecution Service lawyers will appear at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court tomorrow to make a case on behalf of the German authorities that Dr Töben should be removed.
Appearing in court shortly after he was arrested at Heathrow on Wednesday, Dr Töben, 64, claimed the 'Germans are out to get me', and said he was the victim of 'legal persecution'.
Dr Töben said: 'It’s a witch-trial mentality in Germany concerning this matter, which is not the case in England yet.
'You should let me go because this is persecution and you should not demean the court by accepting this application from [the German court].
'The whole procedure is an abuse of process. I see this matter as a legal ambush. You would be subjecting me to a legal process you cannot defend yourself against.'
The charges against Dr Töben relate to material published between 2000 and 2004.
He was arrested in transit from America to Dubai, the court was told.
Tina Whybraw, speaking on behalf of the German authorities, said that he was accused of committing the offences in Australia, Germany and other countries.
Opposing bail, she said: 'It is our assertion that this man would fail to surrender if you were to grant him bail.'
She said that, when police boarded the aircraft, Dr Töben had moved seats 'to avoid detection' and told officers 'you can’t arrest me on British soil'.
The German-born historian is the founder and director of the Adelaide Institute, a Holocaust denial group.
In a disclaimer on his website, he writes: 'If you wish to begin to doubt the Holocaust-Shoah narrative, you must be prepared for personal sacrifice, must be prepared for marriage and family break-up, loss of career, and go to prison.'
He spent seven months in a German prison in 1999 awaiting trial for charges under Holocaust law, which forbids incitement and 'insulting the memory of the dead'.
After being found guilty and sentenced to ten months’ jail, he was released a day later when a supporter posted bail, and fled the country.
Dr Töben also faces jail in Australia for breaching a Federal Court order in 2002 to remove material that it found 'vilified Jewish people'.
In August, he denied 28 charges of contempt of court brought by the Council of Australian Jewry, which claimed that the website still contained 'virulent anti-Semitic' material including that there were no homicidal gas chambers at Auschwitz and that the Holocaust was 'the world’s filthiest blood libel'.
The European Arrest Warrant, which came into force in 2004, abolished the principle of 'dual criminality' that existed under old extradition laws.
This allowed people to be extradited for something that is not a crime here, as long as it is a criminal offence in the country requesting removal.
Holocaust denier David Irving compares British justice to Nazi Germany in court outburst
By Rebecca Camber Last updated at 12:58 AM on 04th October 2008
Support: Irving, left, was at court to fight Gerald Töben's extradition to Germany
Disgraced historian David Irving yesterday compared British justice to that of the Third Reich.
The Holocaust revisionist launched his outburst as he attended court to support his friend Gerald Töben, 64, who was arrested on a German extradition warrant during a stopover at Heathrow.
Töben is accused of publishing internet material between 2000 and 2004 that ‘denies, approves or plays down’ the Holocaust, which is illegal in Germany.
Outside Westminster Magistrates' Court, Irving, 70, said: ‘This type of procedure demeans our society in that the Germans and Austrians can dictate to us what we feel and can say and what we read and write. They lost that right in 1939.
‘If the British soldiers in Normandy who went to the beaches in 1944 could see what happened today, they would not have gone 40 yards up the beach.’
Irving, who was jailed in Austria in 2006 for denying the Holocaust, plans to invite Töben to stay at his home in Windsor if he is granted bail next week.
He went on: ‘I disapprove of some of his views but he has the right to express them, just as people disapprove of my views but my books and views are suppressed.
‘It’s like living in Nazi Germany. What we have seen here today is like Nazi Germany, but in pinstripe suits.’
Last night D-Day veteran Roland Jefferson, 83, who landed on Juno Beach in June 4, 1944, said: ‘Irving is a lunatic and I’m not happy with his comments that are bound to make a lot of veterans angry.
'The Holocaust was dreadful and everyone who bravely fought on D-Day recognises that.
Holocaust-denial law and the attempted extradition of a man
for publishing antisemitic material
Melanie Phillips email@example.com Last updated at 12:06 PM on 06th October 2008
Later this week, a London magistrates' court will hear a bail application in an extradition case which should be ringing alarm bells.
A German-born Australian citizen, Fredrick Töben, was arrested as he passed through Heathrow by British police acting under an EU arrest warrant issued by the German authorities.
The Germans have accused him of publishing antisemitic Holocaust-denial material on his Australian website.
There is no doubt that the views expressed by Toben, a notorious falsifier of history who was previously sentenced to nine months' jail in Germany for breaching its Holocaust- denial law, are vile. He says, for example, that there is no proof that Hitler systematically exterminated the Jews and that Auschwitz was merely a 'transit camp'.
As a Jew, I am acutely alive to the vicious potential of denying the Nazis' attempted extermination of the world's Jews. Such lies are used to whip up hatred against the Jewish people by effectively accusing them of fabricating claims of genocide. There is no question that this not only denies the historical evidence of Hitler's 'Final Solution', but also subjects Jews round the world to further hatred and persecution. Holocaust-denial is, indeed, a modern form of Jew-hatred.
But, through gritted teeth, I have to say that I am totally against the extradition of this man and appalled at the political and legal developments that have brought these moves about.
There are two fundamental issues at stake here. First is the threat to the principle of freedom of speech. Second is the erosion of Britain's power to uphold its own historic commitment to that principle.
Freedom of speech is a bedrock of our society. Sure, it's not absolute; but we limit it only in the most rare of circumstances where it poses a direct threat to individuals, such as inciting or encouraging people to violence.
It's because of this respect for debate that this country has never criminalised Holocaust-denial.
Odious as it is, it is an interpretation of history - and one which in any event defies easy categorisation.
True, it's an interpretation that used to stir up hatred against Jewish people. But once you argue that it should therefore be made a crime, there's no end to it.
After all, you could make exactly the same point that the current vilification of Israel and the denial that it is the victim of aggression in the Middle East has led to an upsurge in violence and prejudice against Jews worldwide.
Even more fundamentally, classic English literature is stuffed with anti- Jewish stereotypes and attitudes. But no one would suggest that expressing such opinions about Israel should therefore be made a crime, or that such literary classics should be censored.
In a free society, the proper antidote to the dissemination of lies is the expression of the truth. The arch Holocaust-denier David Irving was jailed for this crime in Austria. Did that expunge his poison? Of course not; if anything, it helped him pose as a martyr.
What was more effective was surely the destruction of his ideas in a British courtroom when he chose to bring a libel action - which rebounded against him by discrediting his claim to be a 'historian' and ending with his denunciation by the trial judge as a 'pro-Nazi polemicist'.
That is the British way of doing things. But what is so disturbing about the Toben case is that we may be forced to become accomplices to a view which is inimical to our own.
If Töben is extradited, this will mean that Britain will be treating as a criminal suspect someone who is accused of behaviour which is not regarded as a crime in this country.
That breaches an ancient principle of our law - which we so regrettably junked when we signed up to the European arrest warrant. Moreover, it is not just foreigners but British citizens who in theory can now be arrested in the UK and extradited to a country which accuses them of committing a crime there which is not treated as a crime here.
This is part of the attempt to create a 'corpus a European body of criminal law, which is in turn a key element of the EU vision of a unified super-state whose inhabitants all subscribe to the same principles.
But we do not. Both Germany and Austria have a very particular reason for criminalising Holocaust-denial. Given their appalling history, they are understandably terrified that it will help bring about a revival of Nazism.
They are entitled to reach such a conclusion and enshrine it in their own law. But equally, we should be entitled to say that we don't share this view. By signing up to the European arrest warrant, however, we have removed that most precious privilege.
Even if Töben is not extradited - and there is a view that the wording of the Extradition Act may provide him with a loophole - the EU arrest warrant remains a threat to our liberties.
Its scope is dangerously imprecise. Under its terms, people can be extradited to a country which accuses them merely of 'racism and xenophobia'. But these prejudices are notoriously difficult to define.
Indeed, those who object to the EU arrest warrant and the EU project itself as an attack on national sovereignty are themselves routinely accused of xenophobia.
It is surely not fanciful, therefore, to imagine an Orwellian scenario in which such people may themselves be extradited and prosecuted - for warning against the very abuse of power that may put them in the dock.
Holocaust-denial falls into the category of 'hate-crime' which has become such a fixation among Left-wingers and an article of faith within the EU. These zealots appear to believe that hatred and prejudice can be expunged from the human heart through the exercise of the law.
Like other utopian fantasies, however, far from ushering in a new era of tolerance and enlightenment, this creates the very illiberalism it purports to oppose.
David Irving was jailed for three years for a speech he made denying the existence of gas chambers at Auschwitz [Then he recanted – ed]
More and more arrests and prosecutions are taking place against people who are deemed to offend against 'hate speech' - simply because they are preaching Christianity, denouncing immorality or even, in one consummately ironic case, scrawling on a wall 'Free speech for England'.
And all this against the background of the campaign by certain Muslims who seek to outlaw even the term 'Islamic terrorism' in order to shut down debate about that particular threat.
This sinister encroachment of hate crime into English law has little to do with preventing harm and more to do with an abuse of power. And the EU has put rocket fuel behind it.
It is this erosion of fundamental liberties and denial of national differences at the heart of the EU project which is behind the current alarming rise of neo-Nazi parties in countries such as Austria - which jailed David Irving for Holocaust-denial.
It is not bigots like Fredrick Töben who pose the biggest threat to our freedom, but the EU and its incendiary doctrine of nation-denial.
Holocaust denier free after Berlin abandons efforts to extradite him from UK
By Allan Hall Last updated at 9:08 PM on 20th November 2008
Dr Frederick Töben convinced British authorities that they had no right to send him to Germany
A rabid Holocaust denier who was arrested in the UK on a warrant issued by Germany is to walk free after Berlin abandoned its efforts to extradite him.
Germany wanted Dr Frederick Töben to stand trial over his repeated claims that the murder of six million Jews in the Nazi Holocaust was a lie.
Such statements are forbidden under the German constitution and punishable with long jail terms. But Töben - arrested at Heathrow Airport last month - convinced British authorities they had no right to send him on to Germany if he had committed no offence under British law.
Germany launched an action at the High Court in London but it was revealed on Thursday that it has now been withdrawn.
Töben's solicitor, Kevin Lowry-Mullins, said he has also signed a consent order with the German Government to end the case.
Lawyers acting for the German Government had argued that Töben, 64, the founder and director of the revisionist Adelaide Institute, should be extradited to face trial for posting claims on its website that there was no mass murder of Jews by the Nazis.
Daphne Wickham, a judge at Westminster Magistrates Court, ruled that the warrant used to arrest the Australian as he travelled from America to Dubai was 'vague and imprecise'.
Töben was unable to raise the imposed £100,000 bail, and remained in custody awaiting the German appeal.
Mr Lowry-Mullins said: 'The offence is not made out in the UK. If Dr Töben had been extradited back to Germany for Holocaust denial, which does not exist as an offence in this country, then we would have found ourselves in a situation where hypothetically, the Iranian Government could have asked for all the gay Iranian asylum-seekers to be extradited back to Iran.'
Mr Lowry-Mullins confirmed that Dr Töben was still in the UK waiting for the return of his passport. A spokesman for the Justice Ministry in Berlin confirmed the appeal was at an end but gave no further details.
German-born Frederick Töben emigrated to Australia in 1954 with his family when he was just 10. But he took with him the seed-germ of hatred for the Jews as practised by the Nazis he admired.
Töben came from the Wesermarsch area of peat bogs in northern Germany where his family were farmers.
In Australia he never forgot the 'old country' and grew up with a vicious hatred of Jews that he disguised as an academic interest in 'debunking the Holocaust myth'.
He completed a doctor of philosophy at the University of Stuttgart in 1977 and subsequently taught at various secondary schools and colleges in New Zealand, Germany, Rhodesia and Nigeria.
In 1994, he established the privately-run Adelaide Institute which teamed up with other arch-Holocaust deniers throughout the world such as Ernst Zündel of Germany and David Irving in the UK.
Toben called the Holocaust 'a lie perpetuated by the Holocaust Racketeers, the corpse peddlers and the Shoah Business Merchants'.
He further asserts that 'the current US government is influenced by world Zionist considerations to retain the survival of the European colonial, apartheid, Zionist, racist entity of Israel'.
While he similarly denies being an anti-Semite or a white supremacist, he is a favourite among white supremacist organizations such as Storm Front.
In 1999 he was imprisoned for nine months at Mannheim Prison for breaching Germany's Holocaust Law, Section 130, that prohibits anyone from 'defaming the dead'.
Töben still refuses to concede that the Holocaust as asserted by mainstream historians ever occurred, rather asserting that mass killings took place on a much smaller scale. 'The state of Israel is founded on the Holocaust lie,' he also said.
One of his institute's biggest publicity campaigns was conducted on the eve of the Australian premiere of the movie Schindler’s List.
In April 1999, Toben was arrested in Germany and sentenced to ten months' imprisonment for denial of the Holocaust. He only served seven months, and was then released upon paying a $5,000 bond.
Fredrick Töben responds: By labelling me rabid Alan Hall is the hater who unashamedly defames those with whom, for whatever reason, he locks horns. He seems to care little for basic moral values that urge us to seek clarification of a massive defamation action perpetrated by those who push the Holocaust-Shoah line, which is pure hatred against Germans, i.e. that Germans systematically exterminated European Jewry in homicidal gas chambers. To date this just remains a defamatory statement with no reality content. Those who uphold this line of reasoning cannot meet the Revisionist argument that Germans never exterminated anyone, and so these liars and slaves have to rely on the heavy hand of the law to silence their critics by imprisoning them. This is a clear example of moral and intellectual bankruptcy with which Alan Hall seems to be afflicted, a most unfortunate character trait. Fortunately I grew up during a time when we chanted: Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me, and so name-calling leaves me unmoved.
I reject the sloppy thinking that suggests journalists and others must denigrate Revisionists in order to get the message across because this implies such individuals are selling-out their own moral values for the sake of getting a story.
Holocaust 'denier' to stay as appeal for extradition to Germany is dismissed by High Court
By Daily Mail Reporter Last updated at 1:35 AM on 25th November 2008
German authorities wanted the 64-year-old Australian historian, who was arrested at Heathrow Airport on his way to Dubai, to
stand trial for allegedly publishing anti-Semitic material on the Internet between 2000 and 2004.
The Mannheim district court sought his extradition through a European Arrest Warrant.
District Judge Daphne Wickham, sitting at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court, ruled the warrant invalid and described the particulars of the accusations against Dr Töben as 'vague and imprecise'.
The German authorities launched an appeal, arguing the judge had gone wrong in law.
But yesterday Lord Justice Latham and Mr Justice Blair, sitting at London's High Court, announced that the German authorities had consented to the appeal being dismissed.
Later Dr Toben's solicitor Kevin Lowry-Mullins said he did not think a fresh warrant would be issued, and the announcement was likely to be the end of the matter.
He said: 'They will not be pursuing the matter because they have been advised by the Crown Prosecution Service there are a number of hurdles to get over, which means they will have enormous problems taking it any further.'
The case caused alarm in Britain about freedom of speech because, unlike in Britain, Holocaust denial is a crime in Germany and offenders can face jail sentences.
… and now some propaganda from the German and British media, which contains assertions that Revisionists have long ago shown to be just that, warmed up war-time propaganda…
Witness found first evidence of Holocaust
Reported by Manfred Hitzeroth, Oberhessische Presse, 4 December 2008
Translated by Prof. James Damon
The International Conference on the Occasion of the 60th Anniversary of the Formation the Convention on Genocide began yesterday in the Aula at the University of Marburg.
Yesterday, 96-year-old Whitney Harris captured the attention of around 200 convention participants with a fascinating history lesson.
The American lawyer reported that as a member of the prosecutorial team during the Nuremberg Show Trials in 1945 and 1946, he played a crucial role in prosecuting German “War Criminals”, especially in the cross-examination of Hermann Göring.
Calm and collected, with steady sonorous voice, the tall and erect white-haired man presented a warning against war. His speech covered a historical arc from the killing fields of Verdun to the “suicide” of Hitler’s personal emissary Rudolf Hess in 1987.
Hess was the last of the “war criminals” incarcerated at Spandau Prison. He had been sentenced to lifelong imprisonment by the victorious Allies in the Nuremberg show trials, which were patterned after the precedent setting Moscow show trials of the 1930s.
Harris took his audience along on a sentimental journey that ended at the gallows. As representative of American Chief Prosecutor Robert H. Jackson, Harris officiated at the executions of the eleven principal “war criminals.”
Instead of execution by firing squad, as is customary with captured enemy leaders, the Allies chose death by hanging.
Harris described in detail how the life’s path of former Reich Foreign Minister Joachem von Ribbentrop led to the hangman, and what were his last words.
Harris also remembers his interrogation of SS-man Otto Ohlendorf in the preliminaries leading to the Nuremberg Show Trials, in which he found hints of alleged mass murders of Jews, the first “evidence” of “Holocaust.”
Rudolf Höss, the commandant of Auschwitz, was captured while the show trials were already underway, and it was Harris’ job to oversee his interrogation.
After three days of interrogation under torture, which included a threat to hand his wife over to the Russians, [not mentioned in German article - FT] he confessed to all the charges against him, including the murders of two and a half million Jews.
Harris made it perfectly clear that “along with Adolf Hitler and SS leader Heinrich Himmler, Höss was responsible for genocide.”
The Mission of the Convention
Until Saturday, around 200 experts from all over the world will busy themselves with the Convention on Genocide, which was established by the United Nations on 8 December 1948.
In his opening address, Marburger President Volker Nienhaus declared: “This convention is an attempt avoid bad things like holocausts.”
The Convention was initiated by the Polish lawyer Raphael Lemkin (1900 – 1959) whose family were among the victims of “Holocaust.”
The mission of the Convention is punishment of acts such as war, that are committed with intent to destroy a national, ethnic, racial or religiously defined group, completely or in part.
In conjunction with Harris’ address, several circles discussed historic sequence and the development of the Convention in the wake of the Nuremberg Show Trials.
The researchers also discussed how the subject of genocide is handled differently in different countries. They discussed the various tribunals in which war atrocities had been prosecuted in Ruanda, Cambodia and Yugoslavia.
It is also a goal of the Conference to provide stimulus for future international cooperation with the Convention on Genocide.
Zeitzeuge fand ersten Beweis für Holocaust
von Manfred Hitzeroth, Oberhessische Presse , 4 Dezember 2008
Eine internationale Konferenz an der Marburger Universität zum 60. Jahrestag der Verabschiedung der Völkermord-Konvention hat gestern begonnen.
Gestern begann die internationale Konferenz zum 60. Jahrestag der Etablierung der Völkermord-Konvention in der Alten Aula.
Marburg. Mit einer eindringlichen Geschichtsstunde schaffte es gestern nachmittag der 96-jährige Jurist Whitney Harris, rund 200 Teilnehmer der internationalen Tagung in seinen Bann zu ziehen. Als Zeitzeuge berichtete der US-Amerikaner unter anderem davon, daß er im US-Stab der Ankläger gegen die deutschen Hauptkriegsverbrecher bei den Nürnberger Prozessen in den Jahren 1945 und 1946 besonders beim Kreuzverhör von Hermann Göring eine entscheidende Rolle spielte.
Mit sonorer und fester Stimme, aber zugleich ruhig und gefaßt, hielt der hochaufgeschossene weißhaarige Mann am Rednerpult in der Alten Aula der Universität ein mahnendes Plädoyer gegen den Krieg. Dabei spannte er in seiner Rede einen historischen Bogen von den Opfern des Ersten Weltkriegs auf den Schlachtfeldern bei Verdun bis zum Selbstmord des ehemaligen Hitler-Stellvertreters Rudolf Hess im Jahr 1987, dem letzten der noch in Spandau inhaftierten Kriegsverbrecher, der bei den Nürnberger Prozessen zu einer lebenslänglichen Haftstrafe verurteilt worden war.
Harris nahm die Zuhörer mit auf eine gedankliche Reise, die unter anderem in die Exekutionszelle führte. Denn als Vertreter von US-Chefankläger Robert H. Jackson fungierte Harris bei der Hinrichtung der elf zum Tode verurteilten Hauptkriegs-verbrecher. Am Beispiel des ehemaligen Reichsaußenministers Joachim von Ribbentrop erläuterte Harris detailliert, wie der Weg des Angeklagten zum Henker verlief und welche letzten Worte dieser zu sagen hatte.
Besonders im Gedächtnis geblieben ist dem amerikanischen Juristen seine Befragung des SS-Mannes Otto Ohlendorf im Vorfeld der Nürnberger Prozesse, bei der er erste Anhaltspunkte für den massenhaften Mord an den Juden fand. Die von ihm aufgenommene Zeugenaussage habe „den ersten Beweis für den Holocaust“ geliefert, erinnerte sich Harris.
Als während des laufenden Prozesses Rudolf Höss, der Kommandant von Auschwitz, festgenommen worden war, war es die Aufgabe von Harris, Höss drei Tage lang zu vernehmen. Dabei habe Höss eingestanden, daß unter seinem Befehl in Auschwitz mehr als zweieinhalb Millionen Juden ermordet worden seien. „Für diesen Völkermord waren Höss sowie der SS-Führer Heinrich Himmler und Adolf Hitler verantwortlich“, machte Whitney Harris deutlich.
Noch bis zum Samstag beschäftigen sich rund 200 Wissenschaftler aus der ganzen Welt in Marburg mit der Völkermord-Konvention, die die Vereinten Nationen am 8. Dezember 1948 verabschiedeten. „Diese Konvention ist der Versuch, schreckliche Ereignisse wie den Holocaust zu verhindern“, erklärte der Marburger Uni-Präsident Professor Volker Nienhaus in einem Grußwort. Sie geht zurück auf eine Initiative des polnischen Juristen Raphael Lemkin (1900-1959) zurück, dessen Familie zu Opfern des Holocaust zählte. Im Zentrum der Völkermord-Konvention steht die Strafbarkeit von Handlungen, die in der Absicht begangen worden sind, eine national, ethnisch, rassisch oder religiös bestimmte Gruppe ganz oder teilweise zu vernichten.
Im Zentrum der Konferenz stand gestern neben dem Zeitzeugenbericht von Harris in mehreren Diskussionsrunden unter anderem die Frage nach der historischen Einordnung der Entstehung der Konvention in der Folge der Nürnberger Prozesse. Zudem beschäftigten sich die Forscher damit, wie unterschiedlich das Thema Völkermord in verschiedenen Staaten behandelt wird.
Außerdem wurde in einer Bestandsaufnahme die Arbeit verschiedener Tribunale vorgestellt, in denen die Kriegsverbrechen in Ruanda, Kambodscha und Jugoslawien angeklagt waren. Ein Ziel der Konferenz ist es auch, Anregungen für den künftigen Umgang der Staatengemeinschaft mit der Völkermord-Konvention zu geben.
British bombers killed 500,000 in Dresden
Wrong, it was more like 18,000, say German historians
By Allan Hall Daily Mail, Last updated at 10:55 AM on 20th October 2008
For more than 60 years Britain's Bomber Command led by Arthur 'Bomber' Harris has been vilified for causing up to 500,000 deaths in the carpet bombing of Dresden during World War II. But now, after a four-year investigation, a panel of German historians has said that the true number of dead from the Allied air raids in January 1945 was between 18,000 and 25,000.
They reached the figure after combing through death certificates, hitherto sealed eyewitness reports, registration cards for people made homeless and hospital records.
It now emerges that the high number of deaths from 'Operation Thunderclap' was a myth invented by the Nazis, perpetuated by Communists and re-born in the past decade to serve the aims of ultra-nationalists.
The myth took form barely after the vapour trails of the bombers disappeared in the skies over the city.
It suited the Nazi propaganda machine to claim that half-a-million women and children had been incinerated in the firestorm. It helped persuade a struggling population that this was awaited them all unless they fought for Nazism with their last breath.
Then the Communist East Germans perpetuated the myth, mindful that it served their purposes by showing the destructiveness of capitalism and fascism combined. In the last decade neo-Nazis have sought to keep the lie alive as they praise many of the policies of the Third Reich.
By the mid 70s historians were beginning to question the real total of casualties.
Although many records lay in the still-Communist archives of Dresden, the accepted figure dropped to between 50, 000 and 150,000 deaths, based on Nazi German records and declassified Allied intelligence reports.
Then, when the wall fell and more records became available, the accepted number dipped even further, to 35,000.
A fortnight ago the myth was revealed as just that. A panel of German historians tasked by the modern-day rulers of Dresden said the dead numbered between 18,000 and 25,000.
They worked through miles of archived paperwork for the past four years to arrive at their figures, using death certificates, hitherto sealed eyewitness reports, registration cards for people made homeless and hospital records.
The historians found most people died in cellars, suffocated when the oxygen was sucked out of their hiding place or killed by the concussion of the falling bombs.
Strange climactic conditions combined to create 2,000 degree centigrade “firestorms” which whipped walls of flames through the heart of the city, incinerating everything in their path.
By contrast Operation Gomorrah, the saturation bombing of Hamburg, did indeed cause at least 50,000 deaths.http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1078529/WW2-Dresden-bombing-killed-far-fewer-people-half-million-new-records-show.html
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