Thursday, October 4, 2007

If David Irving is a scrupulous historian how come he's posting phony news stories?

As a result of having read about David Irving's supposed comeback, Michael Moynihan of Reason visited Irving's website. [This is something I rarely do. So hats off to Moynihan for having the gastro-fortitude.]

He discovered that Irving has posted a story which claimed to come from the AP on a Harvard Law School student who was supposedly expelled for having cited a Holocaust denial source in a paper. The attack on the student, according to this story, was led by Alan Dershowitz.

The story is a satire. It has no relationship to reality. Irving apparently picked it up from some virulently anti-Zionist website.

Posting a story from such a website without checking if it is true [a ridiculously simple thing to do] seems to fly in the face of Irving's protestation in court that he waswas scrupulously fair in everything I do in public life?

Wonder if the Guardian or Forward will be hoodwinked, as they were by Irving, into doing a story on this too?

More about the Forward's less than stellar coverage of this story in another post.


acadia said...

David Irving... Even with my liberal views, I simply can't stand that guy. He is filthy. Anyways, in your recent article to leftist frontpage view, you stated:

"I write this having just returned last night from Sarajevo and a meeting of the International Association of Scholars of Genocide. There was much discussion, not surprisingly, of what should be considered a genocide and what should not be. I watched in wonder as some people proposed that this be put to a vote of the membership. It seems to me that scholars do scholarship, they don’t vote on their conclusions. Will such votes include all sorts of caveats, e.g. 8,000 killed in Srebrenica is a genocide while 6,000 is not?"

I absolutely agree with you. I am surprised that some of these scholars even had guts to suggest that we should "vote" on what constitutes genocide and what not. In fact, scholars have nothing to do with issues of genocide. They are not judges, they don't represend international courts, they have nothing to do with international justice.

Only the International Courts can have final say on what constitutes Genocide.



What's needed is an official and recognised body of 'Historians', who have rules and professional standards to maintain and strict membership requirements. You could protect the 'Bestowed Title of Historian' by refusing membership to those who are a disgrace to the calling or who have brought the title into disrespect. The idea of Guilds is not new and a digraced member would soon be 'outlawed' by others guild members in other professions, meaning in our case the book printing and publishers guilds members.

In my view the fight against anti-semitism and Holocaust denial should be fought through guild members and book publishers associations who almost certainly will be sympathetic to the cause and eager to maintain historical accuracy. A basic membership rule might be the publishing of just one historical subject book by a leading publisher, or any work leading to the award of a Phd, either of which is sent in for perusal with your membership application form. It needs to be said that guild members who sit on the 'Ethics Committee' have a duty to refuse membership, or to revoke same. [Just a thought whilst sat drinking tea and wishing it was warmer here]

hockey hound said...

Since when was Irving ever concerned with truth? He is an anti-Jewish bigot. This is all one needs to know about the man. His hatred of the Jews overrides in his poisoned mind what for much of the rest of mankind is a prerequisite to being human, which is the duty of the conscience to discern between right and wrong; which, in turn, is a prerequisite of honest historians in their labour of collocating truth and untruth to protect the former and expose the latter. This is what the book 'History On Trial' is all about: protecting truth and exposing liars.

hockey hound said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
hockey hound said...

Dear Prof. Lipstadt,
Below is a corrected version of my last post. Could you please post this corrected version. Thankyou.


"International Courts"

Excuse me? The only "international court" that I know of is the UN's International Criminal Court. This court, as a consequence of the UN membership being composed primarily of Islamic androcracies, has publicly denounced Israel and her Jews on many occasions and within the pages of some of the most anti-Jewish/anti-Israel, irascible, and rebarbative media outlets in the world. You would trust a court made up of these people to engage alongside the Western world in protecting the truth of the Holocaust? Dream on.

"You could protect the 'Bestowed Title of Historian' by refusing membership to those who are a disgrace to the calling or who have brought the title into disrespect."

Think Egypt. Think Saudi Arabia. Think Pakistan. Think Hamas and Fatah and Hezbollah. For every David Irving exposed, there are entire generations being breast-fed on anti-Jewish hatred.

Real historians, those rare but obscured individuals who have the courage to oppose liars by confounding them with the truth, now need personal body-guards to move about in Western societies. I read today in David Frum's article that Hisi Ali's security detail has been recalled by the Dutch government. Pim Fortuyn was refused a security detail by the Dutch government of his day and was murdered.

David Frum writes, "...democracy sometimes needs to be defended by the incautious." Frum, in the same article, in the same vein, quotes the Dutch writer Leon de Winter: "The costs of protection are completely disproportionate to the outcome: the continued existence of our values and norms." If Western governments are not interested in protecting the truth and those who consider it a duty to preserve that truth, however can we expect an "international court" populated by those member states who purport as suspect and "illegal" the very existence of an entire people (the Jews) within the boundaries of, what was once in the past, and is now again in the present, a sovereign state (Israel) to preserve also that truth?

Dream on.