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Historians Appointed by the Nazi War Criminal Records Interagency Working Group

US Newswire

Story Filed: Friday, February 25, 2000 10:12 AM EST

COLLEGE PARK, Md., Feb. 25 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Dr. Michael Kurtz, assistant
archivist at the National Archives and chair of the Nazi War Criminal
Records Interagency Working Group (IWG), announced today the appointment of
two historical consultants who will advise the IWG regarding the historical
context of the newly declassified materials to be made available under the
auspices of Executive Order 13110.

The two historians are Dr. Richard Breitman and Dr. Timothy Naftali. They
will serve as a resource for the IWG by providing information and analysis
relating to the historical and institutional context of the documents. On
behalf of the IWG, Kurtz said, "Dr. Breitman and Dr. Naftali are eminent
historians and will be an important asset in our effort to make these
records known to the scholarly community and to the public at large. Their
knowledge of this era and their understanding of the importance of new
materials coming to light is unparalleled."

Richard Breitman is professor of history at American University and formerly
chair of the history department there. He is the author of five books, four
of them related to the Holocaust. His most recent book is "Official Secrets:
What the Nazis Planned, What the British and Americans Knew" (1998).
Breitman is a member of the Academic Committee of the United States
Holocaust Memorial Council, and he is editor of the scholarly journal
Holocaust and Genocide Studies. Breitman received his B.A. from Yale and his
M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard.

Timothy Naftali is director of the program on contemporary political history
at the University of Virginia's Miller Center of Public Affairs. He also
heads the Miller Center's Presidential Recordings Project and Kremlin
Decisionmaking Project. Widely published on intelligence and
counterintelligence history, he is the co-author of "'One Hell of a Gamble':
Khrushchev, Castro and Kennedy, 1958-1964." He is currently the chief editor
of the first two volumes of the Kennedy Presidential Recordings Series. A
graduate of Yale College, Naftali received an M.A. in international
relations from the Johns Hopkins Nitze School of Advanced International
Studies and an M.A. and Ph.D. in history from Harvard.

President Clinton established the Nazi War Criminals Records Interagency
Working Group (IWG) in January 1999, through Executive Order 13110. The
public members of the Working Group are: Elizabeth Holtzman, former
congresswoman from New York; Thomas Baer, head of Steinhardt Baer Pictures
Co.; and Richard Ben-Veniste, a partner at Weil, Gothsal & Manges. These
members, as well as high- level representatives from seven federal agencies,
have been charged with locating, identifying, inventorying, recommending for
declassification and making available all classified Nazi war criminal
records, subject to specified restrictions. They must also coordinate with
federal agencies and expedite the release of such classified records to the
public. The Executive Order states that the "National Archives and Records
Administration shall provide the Working Group with funding, administrative
services, facilities, staff and other support services...."

For press information, contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at
301-713-6000.

Copyright =A9 2000, U.S. Newswire, all rights reserved.



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