We have not seen the film but the review here tells a lot about ZÛndel himself. He once decribed himself as a "schwabisch farmer boy". Well, even old foxes may have bouts of enthusiasm. In this very case, we would rather call for caution.
For months, the US media channels were abuzz with tremorous reports -_ all
with an undertone of trepidation, it seemed to me -- about a most unusual
documentary film by one of America's best-known documentary film makers, Errol Morris, of Boston's Fourth Floor and Bulldog Productions. The topic? The tragic story of Fred Leuchter, American execution technology expert and author of the four world-famous "Leuchter Reports"
about the alleged "Nazi gas chambers" of World War II.
Morris chose the title -- "Mr. Death: The Rise and Fall of Fred Leuchter."
Jewish by background, Morris is an established and acclaimed documentary
film maker -- maybe the foremost of his generation. He gained the respect
of his peers for producing such films as "The Thin Blue Line" and several
documentaries acknowledged to be exceptional. He has, thus, impeccable
credentials as a craftsman and is in command of this genre of film. He has
developed some quirky, unique-to-himself ways of creating a tapestry of
images at once dazzling and persuasive, designed to probe and penetrate not
only the psyche of his subjects but also to evoke in the viewer a feeling
of being the "person behind the camera."
Morris achieves that effect chiefly through a technique invented and
perfected by himself of shooting through a see-through 45 degree angled
piece of glass plate on which he projects his own face as he probes,
fathoms, questions and cajoles his interview subjects. During an
interview, the person interviewed does not get to see Morris in person --
only his face, projected on that piece of glass, right in front of the
camera lens, a lens the subject cannot see, a camera man hidden in the dark
whose contours one can barely make out in the glare of the lights. This
produces the startling effect of the interviewee gazing directly into the
eyes of the viewer of the final product, a technique which gives Errol
Morris films a penetration right into the viewer's heart and soul - his
subconscious, if you will.
I noticed this at once, after I arrived at the studio where my sequence in
this memorable film was videotaped - to my astonishment on small, High-8
digital video camera, later to be transferred to film, another Morris
innovation which allows for compact unintrusiveness. The person
interviewed soon forgets that he or she is being filmed at all.
Another smart technique: Morris refuses to meet his interview subjects for
any preliminary briefing before an interview shoot to guarantee spontaneity
in the answers of his subjects. He is one of the best interviewers I ever
worked with -- with a pleasant, very human but firm manner, flexible,
curious, seemingly unprejudiced and thus capable of forming spontaneous
follow-up questions, made possible by answers which virtually percolate out
of the subconscious to the surface of the mind being probed, coaxed and
prodded by Morris with his quiet manner. Morris would have made a superb shrink because he himself has the air of a quixotic iconoclast who dares to ask the oddest questions from weird vantage points and thus often astonishes even his subject. To be interviewed by Errol Morris is an
experience in itself!
I stubbornly resisted that "experience" fiercely for about two years and
gave the Morris staff blast after blast and reason and explanation
sometimes bordering on the insulting why I chose not to cooperate in their
Leuchter film. I simply had been deceived, used, abused, insulted and
compromised by one too many film makers over the years. I had been lied to by producers and lied about by interviewers so many times in my long career that I simply had enough - and I told that to the staff of Errol Morris at Fourth Floor and Bulldog Productions whenever they called and pleaded with me to cooperate -- for more than two years running.
They, for their part, did not give up. They desperately wanted footage of
Fred Leuchter at work in Auschwitz - footage to which only we had the
copyright. The same was true of the Zündel trial footage from Toronto,
trial footage of Leuchter's own trial in Boston -- and, above all, original
footage shot by Jürgen Neumann, Samisdat cinematographer, inside the "gas chambers" of Auschwitz, Majdanek and Birkenau.
I told them we had lots of footage. I tantalized them by sending
black-and-white and color photographs of Fred in action, and excerpts of
videotapes of Fred on location, but I drove a hard bargain, and the project
dragged on because I owned those rights to that crucial footage. I had
undergone an attitude change when it came to German-Jewish cooperation,
especially after the arson and bomb of 1995. My enemies had gone too far!
By then, I had determined that if this was their response to my decades of
trying to find a negotiated, cooperative solution to their idee fixe
Holocaust victimhood lollipop - then I had simply run out of cheeks to turn
in response to abuse, and that from now on I was not going to go the extra
mile to stretch out my hand in reconciliation and in trying to find common
denominators to bridge the "Holocaust" chasm that seemed to divide us. I
did not care how famous a Jew this film maker Errol Morris was. I was
through being abused and vilified. I, too, had my limits -- and enough was
enough! Even some of my closest associates were and are still perplexed by
my new attitude and resolve.
Enter a new Morris associate, Michael Williams. Williams was one in what seemed an endless association of Morris flunkies, as I had disdainfully pegged them in my mind, who called me one day - one more time trying to pry loose from me that precious Leuchter footage for their use! I gave him my usual acerbic brush-off at first. However, this time the Morris pitch seemed different.
There was something about that man's persuasive insistence and human
interest angle that touched me. He conveyed a sense of history he
translated into our conversations. He pointed out the unique opportunity
this project represented for Fred Leuchter to tell his side of the story, a
story which had never been explained sympathetically, much less honestly,
by the mainstream media. It was always invectives and caricatures,
accusations and wholesale vilification of Leuchter!
I argued heatedly: "What has Morris ever done to help an underdog?" and
Williams told me calmly: "Well, he has helped one interview subject, who
was falsely accused and railroaded and was on death Row in Texas, to get a
new, fair trial -- a trial after which the man was found innocent!"
I don't know if Michael Williams knew, or if he just calculatedly told me
this story. It paralleled, in a way, Fred's story, a man falsely accused
and convicted by an orchestrated media vilification campaign in the court
of public opinion -- after he had gone to Auschwitz, and after he produced
his, by now, famous Leuchter Reports and testified for me in Toronto. I
saw myself in the same situation as Fred and that poor convict on death row
in Texas - railroaded by my enemies and a hostile media.
I, too, had been falsely accused and relentlessly persecuted through
numerous prosecutions in Canada by a vicious campaign grounded in hate and prejudice, which had brought me face to face with near death on numerous occasions by bombs, arson and assassination attempts for over 30 years. At that very juncture in my life, I was once again before a so-called "Human Rights" Tribunal, dragged there by the same Jewish elements who had so viciously and relentlessly hounded me for years already in the courts,
Additionally, the Canadian spy service had recklessly and falsely accused
me of being a "security threat to Canada" because of my perfectly legal,
non-violent, peaceful, protective-of-my-German-heritage anti-Holocaust
campaign. If my opponents succeeded with their latest campaigns, I knew
that I faced near-certain deportation to Germany, where eager prosecutors
were already waiting to put me behind bars and then throw the keys away for a decade -- if not the rest of my life.
That was my situation as that call came in from Michael Williams. When he told me in a calm voice that Errol Morris had spent not only his talent as a researcher/interviewer/film maker on that falsely accused and convicted death row inmate, but also used his own funds to make that film and finance the campaign which led to a new trial, I was impressed! Could it be that Errol Morris was the key to liberate my people I had been praying for and hoping for? Could he breach the curtain of censorship which had closed around Leuchter's devastating findings of no deadly Zyklon B in the "gas chambers"? Could a Jew succeed and break the ring of censorship?
It had been ten years since that dramatic, ground-breaking Leuchter
expedition to Auschwitz to test the rocks and mortar for Zyklon B allegedly
used to genocide the Jews of Europe -- and the censorship grip on the media
was such that most of what that decade had netted was ever more
vilification and destruction of his name -- and mine -- but no real
breakthrough into the mainstream consciousness, the way I had hoped for in 1988. We needed a different vehicle to deliver the truth to a world in a
grip of a cunning, organized, all-pervasive historical deception. Could
this documentary be such a vehicle?
I asked Williams to send me more biographical information on Errol Morris's other projects he had done, his career, and interviews with the media -- about his life, himself, his thoughts etc. Williams was prompt. FedEx envelopes, bulging with information, arrived at my office in short order. Enclosed were color copies of photos of Morris, an imposing giant of a man with penetrating and expressive eyes and interesting body language. I
liked what I saw and read and decided to talk to him myself. We talked at length. I warmed to him -- and, in the end, I promised him some of the footage he needed for his Leuchter project, which we prepared promptly and Morris reviewed in Boston. I had decided, one more time, that I would rather light yet one more candle of truth than merely curse the darkness.
Morris requested more specific material and asked additional questions.
Back and forth went the negotiations, much like in another thousand
business deals I have been involved in during my 40 year business career.
Williams, and in the background, Morris, seemed to be competent men,
dedicated to his Leuchter project. There was not a hint of double dealing.
They promised -- not an "anti-Holocaust" film but a documentary of Fred's
life and views, warts and all. And I am pleased to say that they
delivered. There was no undue haggling about prices. I understood fully
the risks involved, for I completely comprehend the world we live in and
what any movie maker would face trying to sell this story, with Shylock
hovering in the shadows and getting his pound of flesh as well. I had no
illusions but saw an opportunity to break out of the vice my enemies had
thrown around me and the story. It looked like we were going to have a
mutually satisfactory deal.
Then somewhere along the way, either Morris or Williams floated the idea
that I should share some inside information about this unusual story in
front of the camera - insights only I possessed. By then I had heard enough about the background work that had already gone into the film and the direction the project seemed to be going that I felt that if Morris could get past the censors with part of the story intact -- in other words, get past his fellow Jews who have a vice grip on the electronic and film media in America -- perhaps there was a long shot chance that at least part of Leuchter's story (and riding on his coat tails, my story, my lifelong quest for truth in history and, yes, part of my own sacrifices in this struggle) could be brought to a greater audience than I could ever hope to reach with my own quasi semi-underground publications and videotapes, radio and TV programs via satellite and Public Access.
I told Williams and Morris I would seriously think about their suggestion
to be interviewed in person. I did just that. I thought about it. Hard. For several more months, Williams kept quietly insisting. I was still reluctant. I told him that burned children feared the fire. I said I had been hurt so many times and compromised so ruthlessly by distorted and slanted films - like the 60 Minutes character assassination by Mike Wallace in America or the W5 program in Canada before it with the film "Profession Neo-Nazi" in Germany - that I wasn't going to subject myself to that kind of treatment lightly one more time.
Williams, never giving up, told me that Fred Leuchter was totally
cooperating, and that they had already filmed him for days. He told me how
well Fred did and how pleased Morris was. He told me that David Irving was going to fly to Boston to be interviewed -- within days! Next, David Irving sent an e-mail to Ingrid Rimland urging my cooperation, saying that the project had, in his opinion, merit. He felt Morris was a straight-shooter, a man of his word.
That e-mail finally was the deciding factor! I agreed I would subject
myself one more time to an interview. I would put my head one more time on a Jew's block -- and hope that the blade would not fall. I called Williams who was off at some film festival in another part of the world, and we made arrangements between Human Rights Tribunal hearings, dates, court appearances etc. that I would fly to Boston to do the interview with Errol Morris. At first, we had planned to do the taping in Toronto, but time ran simply out.
Everything proceeded smoothly. Williams picked me up at Boston's Logan
Airport. He recognized me instantly from the film footage. We drove to
the hotel. I found him to be pleasant, intelligent, straightforward and
Next morning he picked me up and we drove to the studio. I met Morris, who surprised me by his size and by the way he moved. I must confess I did feel a small jolt because Morris was the spitting image of Egon Krenz, the German Communist party leader who presided over the collapse of the Berlin Wall. It was like I was being interviewed by Egon Krenz! Eerie, I thought! Why was it that I always had to deal in my life in historic moments like this with Jews? Never Gentiles?
I did not have much time to reflect on this strange karma of mine. Errol
Morris motioned me towards the hot seat before the camera - but not before
telling me that he considered the interview he had done several weeks
before with David Irving one of the best and most memorable ones in his
life! He was clearly impressed and genuine in his respect, even awe, of
Irving's brilliance, recall of facts and figures, eloquence and demeanor.
I knew he was not, as they say, "flim-flamming" me.
This did not surprise me because I knew from interviews I had done with
Irving that he could be a class act when he was in good form - quick on his
feet, smooth in his delivery, fluent in his subjects and speaking without
hesitation, with an astonishing capacity for instant recall of facts and
figures. I agreed with Morris that to meet Irving at his best was a treat
-- what with his charisma and polished showmanship!
Morris allowed me to set up my own superb little High-8 video camera on a
tripod, off to the side, so I would have an historical record of what I
said, and film the interview on automatic. Then we settled down to the
business at hand and got going.
The minutes turned into hours -- only to be broken up by tape changes and
washroom stops! Lunch time came. By then, we had approximately 4 hours of film on tape. When we stopped, Errol Morris came over from behind some partition where he had been sitting before another camera while questioning me, out of sight from me, to shake my hand. He told me, visibly moved, that he was shocked by some of my revelations and details of my struggle for truth in history. He said he was surprised about many of the things I said -- especially my telling of beatings, bombs, arson, violence, even
murder the other side had committed against Revisionists like Francois
Duprat, Dr. Faurisson, Christophersen and myself. Morris paid me what I
still think is one of the nicest compliments ever made to me: He said that
I had not only matched Irving's performance -- but had topped him by ". . .
being so human."
After lunch- - which I ate alone, away from everybody so as not to dilute my
concentrated thought force-- I went back inside the studio. Morris alias
Krenz greeted me effusively. He said that he and his staff had reviewed
his questions and my answers, and that they had concluded that what they
had gotten on tape already was "just right" and sufficient for the project.
Then we shook hands, I signed some releases and packed up my tripod, camera and water bottles. Williams flagged down a cab for me on a busy Boston street. Off I drove to the airport, secure in the knowledge that I had done one of the very best interviews of my life and had witnessed one more time before history - to the truth as I knew it, had found it and lived it.
I felt sure that in Errol Morris I had found an artist who would, to the
best of his ability - and conscious of the powers that run America's film
industry - guide and shepherd that Leuchter Project around the cliffs of
the censors. He did admit to me before we parted that he was apprehensive
about his own fate after what he had just heard happened to others who
found and told the truth about the "Holocaust." How much he could save -
how much or how little would survive of the things Leuchter, Irving and I
had said, or would end up on the cutting room floor -- would now entirely be in the hands of this Jewish movie maker. I was conscious of the irony that the direction of at least part of history was now going to be determined by this artistic non-historian -- to boot, a member of the tribe!
As for myself, I had witnessed one more time -- before my God and history --
to the facts as best as I knew how, and that now it would be up to Errol
Morris to fight for his film, sequence by sequence and image by image, with
his censorious fellow tribesmen who did not want this story told.
Asked about the project later, I would answer all and sundry that I liked
Errol Morris and thought that with some luck and help from the gods, we
would be able to achieve a breakthrough into the mainstream of society with our ideas. We would raise doubts and hopefully, find open minds. I knew that this project, and Fred Leuchter's unusual story in Errol Morris's artistic and qualified hands could be the means by which we could achieve
Saturday, September 18, 1999 will be etched into my consciousness for many
years to come! This was to be a "first" -- the day when I would attend the premiere of a film in which I not only "acted" or appeared as an interview partner; no, in a way I was responsible for the film itself having come into being, even though I was not the producer and did not have to pay a dime for its production. It had its origins in my 1988 trial -- for, thanks to Dr.
Faurisson, my French advisor, mentor and friend who had told me a decade
earlier that to solve the "homicidal/genocidal gas chamber" story, we had
to find a man in the profession in order to confirm the total physical and
chemical impossibility of the "homicidal/genocidal gas chamber" story. In Fred Leuchter of Boston, a decade ago, we finally found such a man.
The film, "Mr. Death: The Rise and Fall of Fred Leuchter" is the story of
that quest for truth in history and of that man I sent to find that truth --
sensitively and movingly told and documented by Errol Morris, a Jewish
documentary movie maker of exceptional talent.
For months, reports had appeared in the mainstream press and in movie trade magazines about Errol Morris's "quirky" project about this weirdo, wacko "Holocaust Denier" and gallows' builder named Fred Leuchter - hired by that other strange tilter-at-windmills and modern Don Quixote, Ernst Zündel, whose sole aim was to set the historical record straight. The movie reviews were an odd mix of "reviewer angst" and what seemed to me almost a near-panic helplessness by all the writers to come to grips with and focus on the story at hand. What was this story all about? I had never seen any reviews like it. Especially World War II topics are always presented as one-dimensional -- as "good versus evil" -- where no sane person would
contradict the obvious "moral" that Hitler was a genocidal maniac who "gassed six million Jews."
In these pre-premiere reviews, published in some of the most prestigious
publications in America, there was not the usual shrill, out-of-hand
condemnation of me, the "evil Holocaust Denier" or even of Revisionism --
or, for that matter, of Leuchter or David Irving, both of whom had
willingly participated in the making of this film. I was guardedly optimistic. Intuitively I had taken a liking to Errol Morris, the man who had had the idea to make this documentary about Fred Leuchter and his trials and tribulations as a result of that pack of censors that started hounding Leuchter after he dared to go after historical truth with a hammer and chisel on a cold winter day in then still Communist Poland.
When I was told that the film would be officially introduced at Toronto's
International Film Festival on the 16th and 18th of September '99, I tried
to get advance tickets early, for I thought there were going to be throngs
of Jewish movie goers snapping up the seats. What I had overlooked was
that the premiere date fell smack into Rosh Hashanah and the week of Yom
Kippur! As it happened, this was to keep the more devout and fanatical
Jewish elements away. At least that's my guess -- or could it be that
there is now a policy shift in Jewish quarters and a realization that the
genie is out of the bottle?
What greeted me and my friends, as we approached Toronto's elegant and
superbly restored Elgin Theater on famous Yonge Street at noon on a
beautiful, crisp and sunny Fall day, was a line-up of almost exclusively
young, well-behaved people in the 18-23 age range, mainly white. My
supporters and I were pretty much the oldest people in sight, except for
our younger friends and body guards. Surprising also was the orderliness
and civility of the group and the neat dress of both males and females -- a
pleasant sight in these days of artificial, in-your-face sloppiness of torn
jeans, dirty running shoes and baggy, down--to-your-knee pants.
The theater filled quickly. As I walked along the brass-railed,
red-carpeted floor with its Gothic pillars, with gold trim and gold leaf
motifs sparkling in the subdued, tastefully lit theater, my mind wandered
back to the Second Great Holocaust Trial of 1988 -- and the censorious media
blackout. Who would have, a decade ago, predicted I would see the story
re-created on the silver screen?
There must have been some 500-600 people seated in plush, comfortable
seats. There was heavy security everywhere -- beefy men carrying
walkie-talkies, lining the walls and stairs. I was recognized by a few
passersby and bystanders as well as guards and ushers. To my surprise,
there were no incidents -- no heckling, no cat calls, no insults. Just
quiet, polite civility.
Soon the lights dimmed -- and to my shock we were treated to an
eardrum-assaulting cacophony of horrific sound, of lightning bolts crashing
with the harsh crackle of static electricity and a wild and frantic display
of lights and images dancing on the screen -- with an image of Fred Leuchter
hoisted up in a cell-like cage -- much like the Jew "Jud Suess" was hoisted
in that famous classic. It looked like Fred was being electrocuted before
the movie had even begun!
I thought: "Oh my God! This is going to be a rape of the senses by some
doped-out, freaky producer! " That whole, horrifying introduction lasted all of three to four minutes, when the ruckus stopped as suddenly as it had begun - and an unusual sound, almost reminiscent of Nazi rally newsreel sound track, permeated the room as the most incredible story I have ever seen in a documentary movie unraveled before my eyes!
From that moment on, the musical score and the background music and sound were non-intrusive and non-offensive - if anything, I would have to call them tastefully composed, even touching and tender, at times so fitting it can only be called poetic. Perhaps Errol Morris wanted to contrast the
overwhelmingly boisterous society of today with what took place in the
quiet of a quest, for decades away from society's eyes, thanks to the
simple commitment of very plain people like Leuchter.
The story of Fred Leuchter unfolds from his childhood, with faded clippings
and photos of his father, a prison official, and rare, grainy but very
interesting home movie still footage of Fred and his father and prisoners
horsing around in the prison yard where his father worked. There is
footage from the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, masterfully utilized by Morris.
There is even the electrocution of an elephant in footage so grainy it must
have been shot before WWI. No wonder reviewers call Errol Morris "quirky."
Fred, a highly competent, self-taught professional who holds a number of
impressive patents for execution equipment and navigation devices, finally
gets to tell his story in a very human, fluid way, supplemented by images
of him at work repairing electrical chairs, helmets used in electrocutions,
weird gadgets and complicated consoles. Switches and syringes for a lethal
injection machine invented by Fred Leuchter are being woven into a tapestry of images, as Fred takes a walk through one of the prisons where the machine has been installed. His then wife shows him on home videos working in his crowded basement, tinkering away, practicing his macabre craft to make the execution of society's worst elements less painful and more human. Fred is shown testing gallows in prisons, performing fake executions with ropes tied around bags of sand as they hurl down a trap door. At times, the audience snickers and laughs lightheartedly when Fred makes some self-deprecating remarks about what has to be one of the eeriest lines of work in the world.
Suddenly the screen goes pitch black -- and in stark, bold, white type the
message appears on the screen: "The Trial of Ernst Zündel in Toronto,
Canada" -- accompanied by a subdued, now serious musical score!
Abrupt is the word!
The room fell totally silent at that moment! It was so silent you could
hear a feather drop -- and the mood of the audience, from that moment on,
never changed back to the frivolous giggles or nervous laughs that
punctuated the first part of the film! This change in mood was so telling
-- and startling! -- that it must send shivers up the spine of traditional
Holocaust promoters and beneficiaries. That silence signaled very clearly
that serious business and issues are at hand!
The next moment was even more startling: Filling the entire screen, edge
to edge, in the most vivid red, with striking bold black type, was the
cover of that fateful booklet "Did Six Million Really Die?" This
provocative image surely must sear itself, in this extreme close-up,
filling the entire screen, into the consciousness of the most casual
Next followed an equally startling, brilliantly colored sequence, shot by a
camera man for a Toronto TV station, of me being hoisted on the shoulders
of my friends on January 18, 1988, at the beginning of the trial, as I
unfurl a huge banner reading "The Holocau$t is a Hoax!" -- holding it up for
the entire world to see! Next to me stand supporters who hold up similar
slogans and signs, saying "The Holocaust is a Racket!" "The Holocaust is
That image sat there for what seemed like an eternity to me! I was utterly
stunned by that opening scene! Wow! I could not believe it! I did not think that I could trust my eyes! Errol Morris had gone out of his way to dig up that provocative footage, because our own amateur photographer, I later found out, had pushed the "gain" switch on his video camera at the time, which burned out and ruined that crucial, memorable scene in our own videos of the day.
Man, was I pleased! What an opening statement to a story challenging the
Holocaust! And not a word had yet been said!
Then followed video footage of newscasts of my 1988 trial, good excerpts of
my statements to the press -- one better than the next! -- and all that on
the huge silver screen in a spectacular theater in downtown Toronto, where
a decade ago I had been beaten and spat at by hissing, howling Jewish
Defense League thugs!
One could write page after page to go through this fast-paced presentation
of the trial, which had the entire audience enthralled with rapt attention.
Gone was the laughter. There were no snickers. Only a somber silence
permeated the theater as the Revisionist drama unfolded.
The audience watched the Leuchter trip to Poland, then still under
Communist rule, illustrated with scenes at the airport, Fred on the plane
and in Warsaw, filmed in dramatic angles, and the startling but for me
familiar footage out of one of the most famous films of the Nazi era,
"Triumph of the Will".
It is hard to describe what I felt as I saw it all fill the screen. It is
the famous series of sequences of Adolf Hitler, winging his way to
Nuremberg like in some ride of the Valkyries, high above the clouds over
Germany. Then the clouds break and reveal the old medieval town of
Nuremberg from a birds-eye's view, with a swastika flag slowly moving in
the breeze as it hangs there languidly from a tall church tower below -- as
if some god had filmed it!
The pace picks up as Leuchter lands in Poland and arrives in Auschwitz to
begin his work in earnest. The on-the-ground investigations in the ruins
of the various buildings and in the "gas chambers" are interestingly
presented. One practically smells the rot and mildew, now that fifty years
have passed. Fred's hammer blows echo eerily through the dimly lit "gas
chamber" as his chisels bite into the mortar and bricks -- soon to reveal a
falsified and distorted history! -- while Fred narrates dispassionately but
with a quiet and steady voice, what he is doing, step by step -- and why!
For some of the close-up sequences, Morris skillfully employed professional
actors, who immeasurably heighten the drama and enhance the on-the-ground footage I gave him permission to use. The scenes of Auschwitz with the ground fog rising, the barbed wire, rusty and dripping wet, the decaying buildings -- image piled upon image in an unhurried and purposeful way -- these sequences are simply exceptionally done and interwoven skillfully!
This film must have a profound effect on newcomers to the subject of Revisionism -- pro or con -- for years to come!
Somewhere midway through this sequence, my face gets blended in with some telling commentary by me, filmed in Boston. Then Fred Leuchter comes on with his Boston accent and continues with the narration of the story. There is never a dull moment in this film! Not one! For instance, Morris could not pass by the opportunity and temptation to bring my "Adolf Hitler's birthday present" to the screen. This is my very own private gesture to this Leuchter story. Unbeknownst to my lawyers and even to Fred Leuchter and his wife, I had timed the introduction of the Leuchter Report and his court appearance on the 99th birthday of Adolf Hitler on the 20th of April 1988. It was my "gift" to history and to the late Chancellor of the German Reich -- and to my German people -- to present what David Irving called "this shattering document" on this very day.
It was my gift of hoped-for liberation. I knew that if properly wielded by
Germany's leaders and its media, the Leuchter Report would be the sword the Germans could swing to cut the Gordian Knot of the entangled Holocaust lie that has imprisoned them and kept them on the defensive for more than half a century on the world's stage!
In this documentary there are, of course, politically correct concessions --
without it, films such as this one are doomed at the box office, if they
ever make it to the silver screen at all. There are the expected Holocaust
promoter interspersions like Shelly Shapiro and others -- about Fred and I
being "racists" and "anti-semites" etc. -- but one can sense that Morris put
these sequences in to get his documentary past the censors and to secure
the distribution for his film in the perfunctory way he presents them,
clearly announcing in stark white text -- "Zionist Activist" - before they
appear on the screen. His heart or his artistic hand are obviously not in
these perfunctory nods to the Holocaust Lobby.
For instance, just when Revisionism is about to triumph, when our forensic examination of the alleged "murder weapon" and "murder site" are about to reveal the falsification of Holocaust history, when Fred Leuchter, applying Dr. Faurisson's blue print for his search for clues and samples should bear fruit -- because they did reveal the lack of Zyklon B in the samples taken! -- in steps who else but Dr. Roth?!
Dr. Roth was our horrendously expensive expert witness of the 1988 trial,
the man who had analyzed Leuchter's Auschwitz-Birkenau samples in a blind analysis test, as empirical tests of this kind are supposed to be done
according to the scientific method. I remembered Roth as an imposing,
proper scholar -- well-spoken, nattily attired. His testimony in the trial
transcript is unequivocal and to the point.
Well, that was then -- and now is now. In this film, Roth looks like the
cadaverous, almost mummy-like alien we have gotten to know in X-File and "Incident at Roswell" UFO flicks - with his elongated turkey neck, his eyes that are narrow as slits, and his mouth a mere thin horizontal line across his face, his skin texture hardly human. I was appalled - as much by his looks as I was, seconds later, by the words that came out of his mouth!
What this man said there on the screen was in glaring contrast to what he
had said under oath in front of Judge Thomas in the witness box in 1988 in
Toronto! What happened?
It isn't hard to speculate. Now Roth has had 11 years of experience under
his belt of how ruthless the Lobby is towards all those who rattle the cage
of the Holocaust taboo. What Dr. Roth delivers now is gibberish -- and has
been competently refuted, as surely he must know, by three additional
forensic investigations, more detailed than Leuchter's. His "reasoning"
can be refuted by any high school chemistry student. As I was listening to
him, he reminded me of the testimony of all those who testified in the
witches trials, all of whom had seen the devil have sex with the accused
witches, all of whom had minute details to add to what we know today were
blatant lies. Today we know how witch trial testimonies come about, how
people feared that if they did not say what was expected of them, they
stood themselves under suspicion of having cavorted with the devil and
could themselves be accused next -- for they had been, self-admittedly, in
the very presence of the devil!
Morris dazzles the viewer with beautifully filmed scenes of bubbling
cauldrons, gurgling Bunsen-burners, scores of glass bottles, flasks and
scientific apparatus -- to camouflage, or reinforce, Roth's situational
ethics chemistry? I found these scenes at once angering and disturbing,
for we, the victims of the Holocaust lie, were victimized once more -- this
time by Errol Morris. Was it necessary for Morris to get the film passed
to include this disingenuous perjury? Who, at this point, is to say? We
were not in on the negotiations.
Next enters Jan van Pelt, a self-satisfied, smug and equally oily
representative of Holocaust orthodoxy, who waxes eloquent and as expected
in theological phraseology -- who talks about "holy ground", "sacred sites",
"religious shrines" etc. being violated by the infidel Fred Leuchter. He
turns the pages of some brittle documents and palms off on the viewers as
new "discoveries" such terms as "Vergasungskeller" -- a term that was
discussed and explained by Dr. Faurisson decades ago! He lets forth the
usual streams of invectives and customary vilification, while he engages in
what he knows to be the falsification of German texts and documents -- in
full and plain view of the audience. He assigns sinister meanings to texts
which are perfectly harmless and normal, such as "Gasprüfer" (gas sniffer)
-- a device every Canadian Consumers Gas employee dangles from his belt when he goes out on a call where a gas leak is suspected. Every normal viewer cannot help but wonder at this point: "Is the Canadian Gas Company" also secretly running an underground "extermination of six million Jews" campaign?
Bizarre. Cheap. Unethical to boot. Unworthy of Errol Morris, I thought.
Still, my heart froze and a cold shiver overcame me when I saw the
performance of van Pelt who delivered his lies and distortions of German
words and intentions and texts with a convincing if somewhat sarcastic tone
of voice so as to once more try to con the gullible -- and to prevent the
truth from sinking in: That the Germans had no genocidal program using
homicidal "gas chambers".
However, there too, Morris's artistry, when document folders are opened in
the Auschwitz archives with blueprints and elaborate building plans, is
superb, the lighting masterful. It cannot camouflage the deception to all
those who still can think. From the sound of the brittle papers being
amplified to the cropping, lighting and perspective -- I must say that
seldom have I seen such a sensitive treatment of documents found in any
other film -- including our own.
Overall, the sound bytes and scenes chosen by Morris are good. David
Irving makes a few appearances in the film. In spite of the discordant
note of the shrill insertion of sound bites by "Zionist activists" --
declared as such by Morris before or after they make their appearances --
the film winds its way to its very haunting conclusion, at times
accompanied by narration from Fred's former wife, Carol, about her life
with Fred, their harrowing trips to Poland, and their work on their
honeymoon in Auschwitz. Fred's "six packs of cigarettes and 40 cups of
coffee" a day get a "Sonderbehandlung" -- special treatment. Even Mark
Weber of the Institute for Historical Review" makes a brief appearance,
introducing Fred at an IHR convention.
For the rest of the film, Fred gets star billing -- and makes the most of
it, given the chance presented to him. He walks away as a true Anti-Hero.
Fred Leuchter never sold himself. This man was not for sale.
I was moved by Fred's tragic story and felt empathy for him, for I had
gotten to know him and developed an appreciation of his rock-bottom honesty and simplistic goodness while I worked with him.
In summary: Fred Leuchter had his say! The van Pelts will distort texts and facts of history a little while longer. The Roths will backslide out of fear and terror, thus risking charges of perjury. The censors and keepers of the gates of Holocaust orthodoxy may even be able to cow and browbeat Jewish film makers like Errol Morris into compromising themselves to get at least part of the message out -- a message of quiet resolve and civic heroism, of courage, of painful abuse endured in the service of a truth once found and understood.
What does it really matter? The truth will out. It will. This film,
despite its minor genuflecting to please the Noisy Lobby, proves it.
The one man who did not yet have his say, who was not there, who took more abuse than any one of us and who was, and is, a central figure in this
drama -- a drama he has coined the "great intellectual adventure at the end
of the 20th century" -- is my dear friend and mentor, Professor Robert
Faurisson. He is the man who ultimately found Fred Leuchter. A latter day
Diogenes, he took his intellectual lantern and found one honest man --
walking the streets of Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
And this planet was never the same! It was, and is, Dr. Faurisson's achievement that this film was even possible -- for Fred Leuchter, Dr. Roth, Shelly Shapiro, van Pelt, David Irving and I were only actors on the stage of history -- with small bit parts to play. He was the man who set it all in motion. To him, the world owes thanks and honor! I pray and hope that he will find his Errol Morris to let him tell his story in his own words in his own lifetime.
I predict this documentary will become a cult film among the young
generation. It will be talked and written about for many years to come.
Other film makers and documentary producers will pick up where Errol Morris left off. With the increasing technological perfection and sophistication of the Internet, these future film artists will not have to make the compromises Errol Morris still had to make to get this project finished and distributed by standard film distributors.
This film is a true milestone -- and even with its ethical flaws, more than
we have ever dared to hope. Dr. Faurisson, Fred Leuchter, David Irving,
the Institute for Historical Review, Ingrid Rimland and I -- we could not
have done it without our supporters! All of us were nothing but mere
instruments of fate, for God works through plain men and women. This
breakthrough is your breakthrough! Mankind and truth are the winners! The floodgates have been opened, and a torrent of truthful information is about to wash away decades, if not centuries, of lies! The Age of Truth, the new millennium, is now upon us -- and you, my supporters and donors far and wide, have made it possible by your donations, large and small. You gave us not only the means, but also the will and determination to carry on this fight against great odds -- and even greater evil! It was your love and devotion to truth that made us stay the course!
SEE Revisionist Catches
Jewish Film Maker in Flim Flam, BY MICHAEL HOFMAN
Zgram circulated by Ingrid Rimland, 6 and 7 October 1999.
This text has been displayed on the Net, and forwarded to you as a tool for educational purpose, further research, on a non commercial and fair use basis, by the International Secretariat of the Association des Anciens Amateurs de Recits de Guerres et d'Holocaustes (AAARGH). The E-mail of the Secretariat is <[email protected]. Mail can be sent at PO Box 81475, Chicago, IL 60681-0475, USA..
We see the act of displaying a written document on Internet as the equivalent to displaying it on the shelves of a public library. It costs us a modicum of labor and money. The only benefit accrues to the reader who, we surmise, thinks by himself. A reader looks for a document on the Web at his or her own risks. As for the author, there is no reason to suppose that he or she shares any responsibilty for other writings displayed on this Site. Because laws enforcing a specific censorship on some historical question apply in various countries (Germany, France, Israel, Switzerland, Canada, and others) we do not ask their permission from authors living in thoses places: they wouldn't have the freedom to consent.
We believe we are protected by the Human Rights Charter:
ARTICLE 19. <Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.>The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10, 1948, in Paris.