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Nov
28
2009

Removal of Warning Gas predates Nazi Regime

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By Richard A. Widmann-

We often hear the charge that the removal of the warning gas from Zyklon B was evidence of the homicidal intentions of the Nazis. Inconveniently, the issue of the inclusion or removal of the warning gas predates the Nazi regime.

Those interested in the subject are guided to the U.S. Public Health Reports circa 1931. One finds extensive discussion of Zyklon B as a ship fumigant in the United States and especially in the ports of San Francisco.

In regard specifically to the warning gas we find:

“Both of the warning gases which have been used with liquid cyanide produce a tear effect. The effect of the 20 per cent cyanogen-chloride gas is greater than that of 5 per cent chloropicrin, i.e., lachrimation is much more marked; and it is believed that, on account of the tear effect, a person unfamiliar with fumigation could escape from a small room containing hydrocyanic-acid gas with 20 per cent cyanogen chloride before inhaling a dangerous amount of cyanide.” (July 3, 1931 p. 1575)

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Written by Widmann in: Zyklon B | Tags:
Nov
22
2009

Learning Nothing from the Past

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By Richard A. Widmann-

In stark opposition to George Santayana’s now clichéd quote about learning from history, revisionist pioneer Harry Barnes in his  History and Social Intelligence  boldly noted that he did “not accept the view that history can in many cases be directly useful to the present generation through the discovery of alleged specific analogies between the remote past and the present day.”  He continued, “Perhaps the greatest lesson of history is that it has no such lessons for our generation.”

Whether the current generation did not heed Santayana’s warning or whether the vast differences of historical periods preclude us from applying lessons from the past, there is little doubt that we seem to repeat the worst mistakes of the generations that preceded us.

One historical period that has been embraced by popular culture is the “Red Scare” of the early 1950’s.  The nearly mythologized account seemingly replacing the earlier tales of young Washington and his cherry tree describe a vicious anti-Communist crusade led by Senator McCarthy.  McCarthy, or so the story goes, unfairly and undemocratically destroyed lives because of suspected Communist sympathies.  Regardless of the accused connections to Communism the message today is surely that all are free to believe what they choose – politically and otherwise.  The United States is the land of the free, and if we resort to totalitarian methods, to blacklisting, to name-calling, and attacks on character, then we have in fact lost what is best in America and in fact what so many lost their lives to protect during the Second World War.

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Written by Widmann in: Censorship,Historical Revisionism | Tags:
Nov
22
2009

David Irving’s Website Attacked

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By Richard A. Widmann-

News this morning tells of hackers who broke into David Irving’s Website(s) and internet accounts. They apparently stole private information including ID’s and passwords and even bank account information. They took mailing lists and destroyed content on his Website. This same group, or an associated group also sought to have events on his speaking tour cancelled.

Those involved apparently think they are doing a good thing — fighting “Holocaust denial,” “neo-Nazism,” “racism,” add the slur, you get the idea. The value of free speech and a free press is completely lost on this crowd. They miss the point that their methods are in fact “fascist” or “Stalinist” in nature. The desire to prevent someone from sharing ideas which oppose your own is the type of dogmatic thinking that led to the burning of heretics, the witch trials, and the extremes of National Socialism and Communism.

For these hackers and “anti-Fascists,” none of this matters. They are sure that they are right. In being so right, it is fair to stop the speech of those they oppose.

They miss the point that if the only speech we defend is that which we support, then freedom is lost. It is only offensive speech or speech we disagree with that NEEDS the protection of the law.

Many years ago Huey P. Long said, Fascism will come to America,but likely under another name, perhaps anti-fascism.” Today it is clear that Fascism is live and well in the United States — brought to you by those with little understanding of what they have done.

Written by Widmann in: Censorship | Tags:
Nov
22
2009

A Call for Dissident Writers

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By Richard A. Widmann-

Today certain historical studies are strongly discouraged and in certain once-free democracies even outlawed. But a recent interest in discovering the facts about the twentieth century’s two world wars and their aftermath as well as the consequences of those events inspires us with new courage and optimism. Harry Barnes said that correction of the historical record could only occur in light of a calmer political atmosphere, and a more objective attitude. He was surprised to find that even 25 years after the Second World War, such an atmosphere had not yet developed.

Still, Barnes and his peers managed to create a set of solid historical research based on the facts. Once lost down the Orwellian ‘memory hole,’ many of these titles have resurfaced in the bibliographies and notes of best-selling books by Ron Paul and Patrick J. Buchanan. Once again, the names of John T. Flynn, Garet Garrett, Charles Callan Tansill, William Henry Chamberlin, Captain Russell Grenfell, Walter Millis, Francis Neilson, F.J.P. Veale, and Luigi Villari can be found influencing contemporary thought. These authors and long-forgotten volumes are being sought out by a new generation who cannot be properly classified as “right” or “left” by contemporary standards.

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Written by Widmann in: Free Speech,Historical Revisionism | Tags:
Nov
22
2009

A Quarterly Journal for Free Historical Inquiry

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By Richard A. Widmann-

Slightly over 30 years ago, James J. Martin, one of the deans of revisionist history of the twentieth century coined the term “Inconvenient History” with his collection of essays, The Saga of Hog Island. Long before Al Gore would speculate on the “Inconvenient Truth” of global warming, James Martin was already a veteran. Martin wrote:

“What the late Harry Elmer Barnes described in detail over the years as the ‘historical blackout’ with respect to World War Two revisionism has been the fate of other historical diversions from accepted convention in other areas. A venerable ploy of the attackers of inconvenient history has been to ridicule the limited or often make-shift nature of its production, to decry its lack of pretentious supporters, or to launch sly, malicious innuendo against its producers, but avoiding if at all possible coming to terms with substance.”

Today certain historical studies are strongly discouraged and in certain once-free democracies even outlawed. But a recent interest in discovering the facts about the twentieth century’s two world wars and their aftermath as well as the consequences of those events inspires us with new courage and optimism. Harry Barnes said that correction of the historical record could only occur in light of a calmer political atmosphere, and a more objective attitude. He was surprised to find that even 25 years after the Second World War, such an atmosphere had not yet developed.

(Read more…)

Written by Widmann in: Free Speech,Historical Revisionism | Tags: