Archive/File: pub/people/carto.willis carto.006 Last-Modified: 1994/11/04 Copyright 1994 U.S. Newswire, Inc. U.S. Newswire October 20, 1994 SECTION: NATIONAL DESK LENGTH: 920 words HEADLINE: ADL Report Reveals Split in Holocaust Denial Movement that is as Hateful as their Anti-Semitic Propaganda CONTACT: Myrna Shinbaum or David Lehrer of the Anti-Defamation League, Oct. 20-23 at the ADL press office in Los Angeles, 310-285-1292, or after Oct. 23 at 212-490-2525 DATELINE: LOS ANGELES, Oct. 20 BODY: A bitter dispute about control over a $10 million bequest and who will direct a crucial propaganda group has caused a serious split in the Holocaust denial movement, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) in a report released today at the fall meeting of its National Executive Committee, its highest policy-making board. "Embattled Bigots: A Split in the Ranks of the Holocaust Denial Movement" reveals that the Institute for Historical Review (IHR), a pseudo-academic group based in Orange County, Calif., and the movement's main propaganda source, is embroiled in lawsuits and countersuits with Willis Carto, who founded the group in 1979. Carto, who was ejected as leader last year, heads the nation's largest anti-Jewish propaganda organization, Liberty Lobby, which he founded in 1955. He was formerly closely linked to the far-right Populist Party, established in 1983, which ran the former neo-Nazi and Klan leader, David Duke, as its candidate in 1988 for U.S. president. Carto's ouster by other IHR activists led to physical violence last year when he attempted to retake the group's building and was dragged from the premises by the police. Following the scuffle, legal action was taken by both sides to determine who will control the group and a $10 million bequest from the late Jean Farrel, the granddaughter of inventor Thomas Edison. Trying to regain power, Carto has blamed a Jewish conspiracy, writing a letter, to his supporters, "There is not the slightest doubt in my mind that the ADL and/or other forces of political Zionism are behind this..." Abraham H. Foxman, ADL national director, said, "Carto is promoting a conspiracy theory that he hopes will downplay the allegations against him and instead focus on longtime adversaries of the IHR and Liberty Lobby. Frankly, his fate in the IHR is less important to us than how effectively Holocaust denial propaganda can be countered. That is our main concern." The ADL document reports that the IHR suffered financial setbacks ever since it agreed in a 1985 court settlement to pay $90,000 to Mel Mermelstein, an Auschwitz concentration camp survivor. Mermelstein sued the group for failing to pay him the $50,000 reward it offered for "proof" that Nazis operated execution gas chambers during World War II. The mutiny at the IHR was ignited in October 1993 when Carto was ousted, ostensibly for his reputed highhandedness toward employees and mishandling of funds including the Mermelstein affair. However, the primary point of contention revolved around editorial direction of the group's "Journal of Historical Review." Staff members charged that Carto wanted to reduce Holocaust denial features -- the mainstay of the publication -- and planned to abandon the issue entirely and change the name of the magazine. "Ironically, they accused Carto of attempting to turn the journal into a 'racist' and 'Nazi' publication," said Foxman. "That has always been part of the agenda of the Holocaust denial movement." While the battle rages on, the ADL report concludes that even if the two groups continue on their self-destructive path, the Holocaust denial movement will not collapse. There are many others for whom Holocaust denial is a propaganda mainstay. Included among them are Bradley Smith of the "Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust" (closely associated with the IHR), the organization that places its advertisements in college campus publications; Gary Lauck, the leading supplier of neo-Nazi propaganda abroad, and George Dietz, publisher of "Liberty Bell," a gutter-level, pro- Hitler monthly publication. "Measures to preserve the memory of Hitler's victims have taken on a new importance," the ADL report concludes. "Education on the Holocaust, at both the secondary school and college levels, the establishment of Holocaust museums, other programs and public exposure of these hateful propagandists are vital tools in upholding the promise never to forget." The report was prepared by the Research Department of the ADL Civil Rights Division. The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry. ------ Editors: Copies of the book are available from the ADL Public Relations Department.
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