The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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From: Werner Knoll 
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Organization: The Knoll's
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Subject: Re: Ernst Zundel's hypocrisy
References:  <374E2345.1D1461A4@istar.ca> <7ilcjv$fk9$1@hub.org> <374EE7BC.E05FAD57@istar.ca> <7imqh2$j41$3@hub.org>
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Date: Fri, 28 May 1999 13:22:03 -0700
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Kenneth McVay OBC wrote:
> 
> In article <374EE7BC.E05FAD57@istar.ca>, Werner Knoll   wrote:
> >Kenneth McVay OBC wrote:
> >>

> >> >> Mr. Zundel is asking for these things because he is a hypocrite, Mr.
> >> >> Knoll. Sorry to have failed to explain this in terms simple enough for
> >> >> your mind to comprehend.
> >> >
> >> >So you say but you are not telling me and others the reason why.
> >>
> >> Mr. Knoll should perhaps ask Mr. Zundel why he is a hypocrite.
> >>
> >> (Perhaps he can explain it in German, so even Mr. Knoll will understand
> >> his dupicity.)
> >
> >There is only one man here who knows how to use deception and that is
> >you. The only thing I know about Zundel is what I read in newspapers. It
> >stands to reason that your statements about Zundel are conveniently put
> >out of context in order to leave a wrong impression.
> 
> Perhaps you should look at Mr. Zundel's flyers, Mr. Knoll, and rethink
> your contention.
> 
> Then you can ask him why he is a hypocrite.

I had a look at it last year and had the impression that you conned my.
You are nothing put a phony.

Can you put this on your Webside?
***********************************************************
Subject: Authenticity of Holocaust book in doubt
Date: Sat, 3 Oct 1998 18:48:12 -0600
From: Orest Slepokura 
To: werk@istar.ca

Award-winning holocaust book under fire

George Jonas | The Calgary Herald | October 3, 1998

TORONTO - Swiss musician and instrument builder Binjamin Wilkomirski's
1995 book, Fragments: Memories of a Wartime Childhood, may not have set
the world on fire, but it did make a genuine impact. After it appeared
in English (in a translation by Carol Brown Janeway), the New York Times
Book Review described it as an  "extraordinary memoir" that "recalls the
Holocaust with the powerful immediacy of innocence." 

Among other honors, Fragments made the American Library Association's
1997 list for Best Books for Young Adults. In the same year, the book
won the Jewish Quarterly's 4,000 literary award for nonfiction (that's
a prestigious British award that merely shortlisted Mordechai Richler's
novel Barney's Version this year.)

There was only one problem with the book Kirkus Review called a
"masterpiece." It was a question raised by another Swiss writer, Daniel
Ganzfried, in the Swiss weekly Weltwoche last month. Was this
recollection of a child's experience in the Nazi camps of Majdanek and
Auschwitz indeed a memoir as advertised, or was it a work of fiction?

Under a photograph identifying a handsome youngster as "Binjamin
Wilkomirski alias Bruno Doessekker in 1956," Weltwoche asked: "Is this a
child from Riga or a youngster from Zurichberg?" Ganzfried offered his
answer.  "Binjamin Wilkomirski alias Bruno Doessekker knows Auschwitz
and Majdanek only as a tourist," he concluded in his piece.

According to Ganzfried's research (which Wilkomirski disputes),
Wilkomirski wasn't a young Jewish boy from Riga, adopted by Swiss
parents after he survived the Nazi death camps where his real parents
had perished. He was adopted, all right--but after his illegitimate
birth in Switzerland in 1941. 

The question may never be decided. For the time being, Wilkomirski's
publishers stand by the book and Weltwoche stands by Ganzfried's
investigation.

The significance of all this is twofold. The first has to do with the
potential aid and comfort a literary hoax of this type (if the book is a
hoax) gives to Holocaust-deniers. This cannot be circumvented by
elaborate sophistries, such as the topic raised in one Swiss panel
discussion: "Is literature a different and 'better' form of memory?"

A novel about death camps may be poignant and historically accurate, but
it isn't memory. As Roger Boyes put it in the London Times--the only
piece I've seen so far reporting on the controversy in English--"fake
Holocaust testimony distorts the debate."

The other matter of importance is Wilkomirski's claim that his childhood
memories surfaced in his mind as a result of psychotherapy. This would
bolster the idea that forgotten memories of childhood trauma can pop
into a person's head and fishing for them has therapeutic as well as
evidentiary value. True believers in the recovered memory syndrome have
suffered many setbacks in the past few years. When Fragments first
appeared, it was hailed by beleaguered supporters of the movement. Last
year, Michele Landsberg wrote in the Toronto Star that "Wilkomirski's
book is a rare testimony of the way children struggle to make sense of
horror--and to validate their fragmented memories in the face of adult
denial and silencing."

Now Granzfried's research suggests that Wilkomirski's book may only be
testimony to how people of vivid imagination can confuse their
inventions with their memories.

Media fashions change, of course. By now most people see that whatever
the scientific validity of recovered memory, its uncritical and
premature introduction into the criminal justice system has been wrong.
It demonstrably resulted in innocent people being falsely accused and
convicted. Mental flashbacks elicited under therapy, unsupported by
other evidence, cannot possibly amount to proof  beyond a reasonable
doubt. 

When the recovered memory syndrome first came into vogue, the media
jumped on the bandwagon and contributed to the hysterical atmosphere of
a modern witch hunt. It was decidedly not the fourth (or fifth) estate's
finest hour. If it recalled any memories, it was of the Irish poet W.B.
Yeats, who once called journalists "the shallowest people on the ridge
of the earth."

But there's a self-correcting side to a free press. Though we often
resemble flocking birds, emitting shrill cries and flapping our wings in
unison, after a given trend has run its course, one journalist or
another usually calms down, does a little research, and rectifies the
tribe's mistakes. 

                            **********************************
                                    Orest Slepokura
                                 slepokuo@cadvision.com
                            **********************************

Werner Knoll
"Anti-Semitism can be spread by sneezing."*
Werner Knoll

* That what the producer of Schindlers List said Tuesday, May 25, 1999
on CNN. When classmates sneezed in front of him, it sounded like
JewishzzzzzzZZZ.


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