Thursday, March 09, 2006

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Media Contact:
Sara Salzman303-617-9412media@holocaust-history.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Trial By Fire: Holocaust History Project Won't Be Silenced

In the early hours of March 6, 2006, a fire broke out at a warehouse complex near San Antonio International Airport, causing extensive damage to the offices of The Holocaust History Project (THHP), an organization that has been, for the last ten years, in the forefront of confronting Holocaust denial online, in addition to providing educational materials to students throughout the world. Arson investigators now have confirmed that the fire was intentionally set and are continuing their investigation.

It was just the latest in a series of attacks with the apparent intent to silence THHP. For the past 18 months, the THHP website has been under an unprecedented Distributed Denial of Service attack. This cyber attack began on September 11, 2004, and is being carried out by a specially modified version of the MyDoom computer worm, programmed to target the THHP web server. See the THHP statement:http://www.holocaust-history.org/denial/denial-of-service.shtml

Harry Mazal, the Director of THHP said, "We have been able to defend our work against these cyber attackers. They tried, but couldn't shut us down. We have strong indications that this arson is the next step in a series of attacks against our educational and scholarly work. Although the fire caused significant damage to our offices, there is no way we will be silenced. Our web site has not been affected, and our work will continue."

While an arson attack such as this cannot be specifically anticipated, THHP has long ago taken steps to minimize the impact of any attacks, physical or virtual. Several mirror sites ensure that even as serious an attack as occurred Monday morning will be unsuccessful in forcing THHP to go offline.

Background:

THHP is one of the largest repositories of information relating to the Holocaust on the Web. For the last ten years, an international staff of volunteers has worked tirelessly to make information on the Holocaust, and on those who would deny it, easily accessible to students, scholars, and anyone who has an interest in the truth.

Among the material on the site are essays about various events and people, scientific and legal analyses, original Nazi documents, expert witness testimony, transcripts of many of the Nuremberg trials, and the complete texts of two seminal works, Jean-Claude Pressac's "Auschwitz" and Robert Jay Lifton's "The Nazi Doctors." In addition, THHP volunteers personally answer emails from thousands of students each year who are looking for information to further their studies.

The site has registered more than 50 million hits in a year. "Traffic to our site increases every year," said Mr. Mazal, "we intend to keep adding new content to the site. Right now we are preparing the Belsen trial transcripts, and the transcript of Adolf Eichmann's trial in Israel."

Media questions should be addressed to: Sara Salzman, 303-617-9412, media@holocaust-history.org

3 Comments:

Blogger Fern Sidman said...

ANTI-SEMITIC JEW SPEAKS AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

BY: FERN SIDMAN

Columbia University students including the College Conservatives and campus Democrats plan to protest a speech Wednesday by a professor who has written that Jewish organizations exploit the Holocaust to deflect criticism of Israel and to extort European banks and governments for compensation.

Norman Finkelstein, an assistant professor of political science at DePaul University in Chicago, wrote in his 2000 book "The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering" that some Jews have used the Holocaust as an "extortion racket" to get compensation payments, and he has referred to Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel as the "resident clown" of the "Holocaust circus."

His most recent book, "Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History," is largely an attack on lawyer Alan Dershowitz's "The Case for Israel." In it he argues that Israel uses the outcry over perceived anti-Semitism as a bully weapon to stifle criticism.

In an editorial in Columbia University's student newspaper, The Columbia Spectator, Columbia sophomores, Chris Kulawik and Josh Lipsky write the following: "Those who assume that Finkelstein is just another "controversial" speaker, one of many in Columbia's recent past, fail to grasp the absurdity that is Finkelstein. Taking a job at DePaul University after being fired by New York University for his ludicrous and factually inaccurate book, The Holocaust Industry, this "scholar" makes his living off of absurd statements that garner comfortable speaking engagements. At a recent speech delivered at Yale University, Finkelstein equated the Jewish concern over Holocaust denial with a "level of mental hysteria." Clearly, we must first question his very "professorship." Anyone who so blatantly disregards facts and vehemently supports the murder of innocent children is worthy neither of academia nor of the title of professor.

Well, what precisely is Mr. Finkelstein's crime? It is not that he is a Holocaust revisionist. It is not that he denies the right of the Jewish state to exist. It is not that he cheapened the lives of the millions of innocents lost to the concentration camps by equating their systematic murder to any other large disaster. No, his crime both includes and transcends these radical, depraved stances. Only months after Sept. 11, 2001, Finkelstein asserted his support of terrorism. In that 2001 interview, Finkelstein exclaimed, "Frankly, part of me says—even though everything since Sept. 11 has been a nightmare—'You know what, we deserve the problem on our hands because some things [Osama] bin Laden says are true.'"

It is this sentiment that forces students to take a stand against Finkelstein's unique blend of pure idiocy and potent evil. Columbia attempts to teach its students to respect all opinions, listen to all viewpoints, and embrace the free exchange of ideas. We will listen, but we will not let a petty ploy to incite tension and turmoil go unnoticed."

In defense of Professor Finkelstein, the Columbia Spectator also published the views of Arab students. Maryum Saifee and Athar Abdul-Quader who write, "Finkelstein's critics, most notably Alan Dershowitz, charge Finkelstein with anti-Semitism precisely because of his criticism of Zionism, i.e. criticism of the Israeli occupation and Israeli state-sponsored human rights abuses committed against Palestinians. This isn't the first time that a reputable scholar has been typecast as anti-Semitic for critical views against Israeli policies (see David Horowitz's The Professors: The 101 Most Dangerous Academics in America). Undoubtedly, anti-Semitism is an ugly, appalling form of bigotry that deserves universal condemnation. However, Zionism is a political ideology and must never be confused with the Jewish religion, culture, or population. Contrary to the anti-American label commonly placed on Finkelstein, his critique of political Zionism is precisely the type of controversial political discourse that is characteristically American and is analogous to the College Democrats' stimulating debate on the Bush administration.

Finkelstein is often met with accusations of Holocaust revisionism, generally associated with Holocaust denial. Finkelstein's book The Holocaust Industry is actually a critique of Holocaust revisionist arguments that privilege the Holocaust as exceptional in the historiography of genocide. Far from the Anti-Defamation League's claims that Finkelstein is a Holocaust denier, his proof is an unambiguous affirmation that the Holocaust did occur -- his parents are living proof of its horrors! -- noting that the tragedy of the Holocaust has since been ruthlessly exploited and commercialized into what Finkelstein outlines as an industry to promote Zionist interests."

In Norman Finkelstein's own words, he states, "The problem is when you get to the United States. In the United States among those people who call themselves supporters of Israel, we enter the area of unreason. We enter a twilight zone. American Jewish organizations, they’re not only not up to speed yet with Steven Spielberg, they're still in the Leon Uris exodus version of history: the “this land is mine, God gave this land to me," and anybody who dissents from this, you can call it, lunatic version of history is then immediately branded an anti-Semite, and whenever Israel comes under international pressure to settle the conflict diplomatically, or when it is subjected to a public relations debacle, such as it was with the Second Intifada, a campaign is launched claiming there is a new anti-Semitism afoot in the world."

There is no question that Professor Norman G. Finkelstein is a self hating, viciously anti-Semitic Jew. One of his biggest supporters is David Irving, the Holocaust denier who was recently sentenced to three years in prison by an Austrian court for statements he made denying the veracity of the Holocaust. Despite the fact that Finkelstein in the son of Holocaust survivors, his vituperative and twisted and patently distorted logic is being embraced the world over by legions of devoted Jew haters.

We are told that a person can be honest, decent, moral and ethical without belief in G-d. We know that at the beginning of the 20th century, the false gods of education and culture began to replace the One true G-d of Israel. Jews began to believe that a moral and ethical person was one who was highly educated, one who attended the best of most prestigious universities and institutions of higher learning. We believed that an educated and cultured person was a moral person, who would never even entertain the notion of murder, of dishonesty and engaging in unethical practices.

At the beginning of World War II, that fallacy fell apart at the seams. For it was highly educated and extremely cultured German scientists who invented the gas chambers, who invented techniques to transform Jewish fat into soap and who discovered ways of making Jewish skin into lampshades. It was highly educated and cultured lawyers who devised and created laws that developed a society predicated on racism, fascism and xenophobia.

Let us never be fooled. "Reishis Chochma Yiras AdoShem". The beginning of wisdom is the fear and knowledge of G-d. Without that we have nothing. Without that, even highly educated and cultured people can and do engage in immorality, unethical conduct and become purveyors of lies, hatred, distortions, bigotry and Jew hatred. Professor Finkelstein is the personification of such evil.

11:01 PM  
Blogger Fern Sidman said...

Hi,

I did not realize that this blog was dedicated in memory of Irv Rubin, ZTK"L, HY'D. Irv was a dear friend of mine for many years. The following is an article I wrote about Irv, immediately subsequent to his passing.

11/14/02


TODAY WE LOST A TRUE HERO


BY: FERN SIDMAN


When the phone rang today at 7:45 a.m., I had thought it might be someone else, but to my great sorrow I was to find out differently. Shelley Rubin,
the wife of JDL leader Irv Rubin was on the line to tell me that Irv had passed away during the night. I started to tremble, visions of my memories of
Irv came flooding back. Tears, anger, regret, a whole panoply of emotions came to the surface. Shelley was quite naturally bereaved but holding up.


We all know that death is a part of life, however the tragic way that Irv Rubin's life was cut so short is one that deserves closer examination. The question cries out: WHO MURDERED IRV RUBIN??? Irv Rubin was the national chairman of the Jewish Defense League, a man who had devoted his life to the
pursuit of Jewish rights, who feared no man and confronted Jew haters of all stripes. Since 1970, Irv's raison d'etre was to defend Jews worldwide and indeed he had the courage to speak the truth, despite the slings and arrows
that were shot his way by the Jewish establishment, his sworn enemies and the government of the United States.

On December 11, 2001 Irv Rubin and Earl Krugel were arrested by the Federal government on charges of conspiring to blow up the King Fahd mosque in Los Angeles as well the office of Arab congressman, Darryl Issa. In the fascist
frenzy that followed 9/11 the government was hell-bent on proving how even-handed they could be. After all, they were rounding up suspected Al Qaeda members all across the country while President Bush kept repeating to us that this is NOT a war on Islam or Arab Americans.

Apparently, the President came under tremendous heat from the Arab American community to prove that they were not the only group that was being singled out for persecution. It didn't take long before the federal government came
up with the perfect scapegoat. The one person they had been trying to get rid of for years. That pesky Jewish militant out in Los Angeles, they thought, would be the focus of their energies.

One little problem remained, however. Irv Rubin was not a criminal and did not engage in criminal activities. He was never convicted of a crime, never spent any time in prison, so that one hurdle would have to be overcome by the FBI. They did a little homework and came up with a perfect accomplice. Some 22-year-old punk named Danny Gillis who had a rap sheet a mile long would fit the bill. They sent this guy in wired to Irv Rubin and long time associate Earl Krugel, proposing the idea of bombing an Arab mosque. Irv's voice was
only on a few of the tapes and according to his lawyers he said nothing that could be construed as conspiring to perform a criminal act, but nonetheless the Feds pressed on, figuring that Rubin and Krugel would just ride on the
coattails of the 9/11 hysteria and that anyone that was arrested by the US government as a "terrorist" would have no problem being convicted by a jury.

Irv and I corresponded on a regular basis during his incarceration at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles. He was there because the judge
they assigned to his case took his orders from Uncle Sam and decided to revoke Irv and Earl's constitutional right to bail, claiming that they were both a flight risk and a danger to the community.

Irv's letters to me smacked of resolve to have himself vindicated in a court of law. He knew he was innocent of the charges leveled against him and wanted the world to see him exonerated. Yes, prison life is rough on anyone and Irv
was not a happy camper in prison, yet it is my firm and unwavering belief that Irv Rubin did not commit suicide in prison as the media and the FBI and the prison authorities would have you believe.

The authorities would have us believe that on the morning of November 4, 2002, the very morning Irv Rubin was to appear in court, he took a disposable razor and began slashing his throat, then hurled himself over a perch or
balcony, falling 18 feet on to a concrete surface. Now, isn't that just a bit interesting and coincidental.

We all know that Irv was a high profile prisoner. We all know that a lot of people wanted Irv Rubin dead, many of which had the same motives. When Irv's attorneys and his wife demanded a full and independent investigation of what
occurred that fateful day in prison, the FBI responded that they interviewed 15 witnesses who swore that Irv's injuries were self-inflicted. And who, pray
tell, did they interview?? Other inmates and prison guards. So much for highly credible witnesses who come complete with stellar references. Pillars of our community, men of the highest moral character!! Who does the FBI
think they're talking to? And to add insult on top of injury, when the Federal Bureau of Prisons was asked to turn over the videotapes of what occurred, they flatly stated that no videotapes existed. Now, isn't that interesting??? In a prison where you can't walk two feet without having yourself filmed, suddenly they did not have video cameras or tapes, at that
particular moment when this happened.

Please know that the legacy of Irv Rubin will not be that of a man who attempted suicide and succeeded. Not as long as we all have a voice to speak, a pen to write with and feet to demonstrate with.

Irv Rubin was above all my good and close friend for over 20 years. I first met Irv in the late 1970s when he visited New York City on JDL business. I'll
always remember his warmth, his passion and zeal for his people, his complete and utter devotion to JDL and his sincere and heartfelt sensitivity to Jewish suffering. I knew a man who did not possess any fear of his enemies and believe me, they were quite numerous and also very vocal. Whether they be
Nazis, skinheads, Holocaust Revisionists, the KKK, the former Soviet Union, Arab terrorists and even some elements of the Jewish establishment, Irv never cowered in fear, Irv never retreated from his righteous position, Irv stood
firm and stared his enemies in the face. That was Irv Rubin.

A man who only feared G-d and not man. A man who never batted an eyelash about getting in the middle of a confrontation with all sorts of white supremacists, who never showed any ambivalence about bringing issues before a court of law and using the court and legal system to fight battles, a man who
was indeed a lonely voice in the wilderness, shouting out the truth despite vehement condemnations from the Jewish establishment. A man whose legacy will be the complete and total embodiment of the concept Irv held so dear to his heart. That of Ahavat Israel. Love of the Jewish people, love of the land of Israel, love of the G-d of Israel.

Irv was a proud Zionist, even when Vanessa Redgrave called him a "Zionist hoodlum". Irv was a proud Jew even when the Nazis threatened to make him in
to a lampshade. That was Irv Rubin.

And most of all, I'll always remember the places Irv and I demonstrated for Jewish causes together. Whether it be San Francisco in 1984, protesting Jesse Jackson's prominent role at the Democratic convention after he called Jews "Hymies" and embraced Yassir Arafat or whether it be in Teaneck, NJ protesting a Jew hating City College professor, or whether it be in Oslo, Norway protesting the suicidal Israeli-Arab peace plan, Irv Rubin was there.

Today is a dark day in Jewish history. Today we lost a true Jewish hero. A giant among men, a larger than life figure that will remain in our hearts and minds forever. Please G-d, Jewish history will record all the noble deeds of Irv Rubin. If our children will ask us to describe the concept of Ahavat Israel, if our children will ask us to describe the true meaning of Jewish activism, if they will ask us about the heroes of our people, we need only to point to the living legacy of Irv Rubin. A man who exemplified true "intestinal fortitude" as he would say. Guts, bravery, courage, devotion and
unbounding love of his people, his family, his friends. That was Irv Rubin.

I'll miss my good friend Irv, who always referred to me as his "other sister". I'll miss his visits to me in Brooklyn and my visits to him in Los Angeles. I'll miss our long and sometimes heated long distance telephone conversations. I'll miss his loving and caring nature, but most of all I mourn the loss of a beloved husband and father, and I mourn the loss for the Jewish people, a people who has lost the last of the great Jewish warriors.

Goodbye my friend, Irv. You are sorely, sorely missed. Until we meet again, let's keep those two famous words on our lips, "NEVER AGAIN".

May your precious neshoma have an aliya in Gan Eden and may your special soul be bound for eternal life. Your friend, Fern

11:12 PM  
Blogger Fern Sidman said...

LESSONS OF THE HOLOCAUST

BY: FERN SIDMAN

As the world commemorated, Yom HaShoa, Holocaust Remembrance Day, we sit and ponder, in our deep and profound sorrow at the loss of six million of our brothers and sisters.
Many of us cannot fathom what it would have been like to live in the time of this unspeakable horror. Many of us cannot conceive of the concept of this mass extermination. Thoughts of the gruesome, heinous and barbaric wholesale slaughter of millions of Jews forces us to recoil in horror.

We have Holocaust museums and memorials we can visit. We have countless films and documentaries that recount the testimony of survivors. We can even visit those places we call 'hell on earth'", the concentration camps of Auschwitz, Maidonek and Dachau to name a few. All of these places can educate us and sensitize us to the collective pain of our ancestors.

And we ask ourselves what we can learn from this dark chapter of Jewish history. We ask ourselves if this chapter can ever be repeated. We ask ourselves what to tell our children and those generations who will follow.

The reality of the Holocaust is that the threat to our very existence as Jews still looms stronger than ever. The world is teeming with Holocaust deniers such as Iranian President Ahmanijahed who denies the veracity of the Holocaust, calling it a hoax and a fraud perpetrated by a worldwide Jewish conspiracy. His vituperative is warmly embraced by eager listeners. The President of Iran is joined in his hate filled rhetoric by the likes of a David Irving,
Prof. Norman Finkelstein ( a Jew), the Institute for Historical Review, and the prolific site of neo-Nazi organizations who are growing in strength.

There is no shortage of those who would keep the memory of Adolf Hitler, Yemach Shemo, alive and well. And if the world will host Holocaust remembrance tributes and stand in silence in recognition of those who perished, we must clearly understand that the signs of peril and danger still remain and those same countries and leaders who pay lip service to dead Jews can easily become perpetrators of a similar scenario.

We must extricate ourselves from the illusions and delusions that the world has foisted upon us. We must break free of our own myopic world and see the stark and brutal reality. The world is not a safe place for the Jew and the Jew has no where to go. No place to seek safe harbor. We cannot rely on civlized Western democracies to stand up for our rights and for our lives. While the State of Israel has it's mammoth share of problems, it is the only place for the Jew. It is his home and it is the place where the G-d of Israel destined us to live.

And to those who shout "Never Again" at the site of a Nazi emblem or at those who would seek our destruction, we must make them understand that "Never Again" does not mean that the Holocaust cannot be repeated. Never Again means that we will not allow the world to annhilate us without the Jew fighting back. Never Again means that from the ash barrels of Auschwitz, a new Jew has emerged, or more accurately the re-creation of the old Jew. The Jew of our Holy Torah. It is the likes of a Jacob, Moses, David, Pinchas who must emulate. It is the Jew who fiercely belives in Hashem and clings to His ways and stubbornly follows the edicts of the Torah. It is the Jew who fears no man, but whose only fear is that of the Almighty.

It is the courage and bravery of the true heros of the Jewish people that we must take comfort in. We must learn the true lesson of Ahavas Yisroel. As Rabbi Meir Kahane, HY'D, ZTK"L said back in 1971, "The Jewish people, wherever they may be; each Jewish individual - wherever he is, whatever his belief, whatever his place of residence, whatever the color of his skin, whatever language he temporarily speaks - All Jews are part of the great body, Israel. All are brothers, all are sisters, and thr love of a brother to a brother and to a sister is the love of one Jew to another. The pain of a Jew, wherever he may be, is our pain. The joy of a Jew, wherever he may be, is our joy.We are committed to going to the aid of a Jew who is in need, without distinction, without asking what kind of a Jew he is."

And let us make no mistake about it. For the Jew who cannot feel the pain of another Jew, then sadly and tragically we must conclude that something inside of him is dead.

Let us remember the words of our rabbis who said: "At a time when Jews are wrapped in sorrow and one of them removed himself from the community, two servant angels come and place their hands on his head, saying: "this individual who removed himself from the community will not merit seeing the comfort of the community". "and we further learned: At a time when a community is wrapped in sorrow let no man say: "I shall go home and eat and drink and I will be at peace with myself...'" (Tannit 11)

Let us loudly and clearly extol this great and virtuous lesson. Let the leaders of the State of Israel hear these words. Let all the self hating and self loathing Jews who control the government of the State of Israel hear this message, as this message is the vanguard of our survival. Our indomitable faith and tenacity comes from our true belief and trust in the Almighty G-d of Israel. As we say every day in our morning prayers, "And to those who cling to Hashem, their G-d, all of you are alive today."

And to those Jew haters, far and wide, we tell them and the world that we have not forgotten the lessons of the Holocaust. We will never forget and we will always keep these lessons in the forefront of our minds. May Hashem give us the strength and coourage to see the truth, to walk in His ways and follow His commandments and to fear Him and only Him. In this merit and this merit alone, may we see with our own eyes, the Final Redemption.

8:59 PM  

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