Monday, February 20, 2006

Austria [and Germany] are special cases

I have been doing a lot of media interviews from Rome. The issue keeps coming up: are Germany and Austria special cases in terms of Nazi/Holocaust denial laws?

As I have said all along, I think the answer is yes. Their history -- plus the fact that places such as Austria have not really come to a full reckoning with that past -- gives denial as well as the use of Nazi like symbols, e.g. swastika, a special resonance.

Therefore, the fact that Irving had to say in court, as he just has, I was wrong, there were gas chambers etc. is important, not for normal folks, but for his neo-Nazi supporters.

I don't think for a minute that they will now say 'Eureka, I have seen the light and now that Irving says there were gas chambers I believe it too.'

Rather they will say: 'Irving had no choice. He was forced to do this.'

Then when Irving returns to the UK and recants -- as I believe he will -- they will say, 'Exactly as we said.'

More later. Going to get a strong cup of Italian coffee... that may be a redundancy.


Albrecht said...

It has been and still is my impression as well that Irving will recant after he has left Austrian soil. But - he will have a hard time to do it because he has been somewhat specific about certain documents which allegedly changed his mind about the Holocaust. When switching back to his old - and genuine - position, he has to explain some issues very elaborately to his following.

Well, maybe he suddenly discovers that he already had discovered some other documents back in 19-whatever which make him do a U-turn again ...

Dave said...

Not at all...he'll simply say that his statements in court about finding documents that proved the Holocaust happened as advertised (for lack of a better term), were lies to bamboozle and fool a "corrupt court."

He'll say that he was under no obligation to tell the truth to a corrupt court run by the "Traditional Enemies of the Truth," and that he, the clever, brilliant Irving, that superb historian and world figure, fooled the Jews once again.

And all the neo-Nazis will give each other high-fives and roar with laughter at how they fooled the Jews through the very lies and trickery they accuse the Jews of doing every day.

David Irving is the opposite of Hannah Arendt's statement about evil being banal. He's fascinating, in a sick sort of way.