Hayward Joel, Jewish Chronicle

Archive/File: people/h/hayward.joel/press/Jewish_Chronicle.981204
Last-Modified: 1998/12/29:w

Mr Mike Regan,
The Editor,
The New Zealand Jewish Chronicle,
P.O. Box 27-156,

4 December 1998

Dear Sir,

Please permit me to address several inaccurate points made in the article
“New Zealand Connection to Internet Incitement Case”, published in the
December/January issue of your fine newspaper.

First, Dr Fredrick Toben violated my rights as an author by presenting a
copy of my 1993 Master of Arts thesis to the Human Rights and Equal
Opportunity Commission (HREOC) in Sydney. He did so even after I had
expressly forbidden him – in writing on 17 October – from reproducing or
distributing my work in part or in whole.

Second, his reported claim that my thesis (written when I was still a
Masters student anyway) is somehow “proof” that the Holocaust did not
happen is preposterous, and may yet bring Dr Toben and I into litigation.

I state emphatically to your readers my rock-solid belief, based on
extensive archival research and a thorough reading of published sources,
that European Jewry did experience a ghastly holocaust. To be more
specific, I believe European Jews suffered dreadfully during the 1930s and
especially during World War II, when Germans and others maltreated,
enslaved and murdered great numbers.

I can make no stronger statement regarding those events – which I lament –
than one I made in the very thesis that Dr Toben illegally presented to the
HREOC. On page 335 of that thesis I stated (and now I quote verbatim):

“The present writer [that is, me] considers the Nazis’ brutal and
destructive treatment of Jews, Slavs, Gypsies, Communists, Jehovah’s
Witnesses, the physically and mentally ill and other such groups to be
abhorrent. As a libertarian he also finds repugnant the Nazis’ assault on
freedom of thought, freedom of speech, and freedom of the press, and
considers their persecution of political dissenters and academic and
artistic free-thinkers worthy of the international condemnation it was and
continues to be met with.”

I strongly dislike much of what Dr Toben and others write about Jews in
their newsletter. Even when I seek proper scholarly “distance” from my
subjective feelings of unabashed warmth towards Jewish affairs, I still
consider that material anti-Semitic, and I have told them this.

For example, on 21 September 1998, I wrote to Dr Toben in order to make my
position clear. Part of my letter stated: “I am unhappy with the heavy
focus on things Jewish in Issue No. 81 (October 1998), a focus so one-sided
in its presentation of Jewish activities — only negative activities get
mentioned — that I must conclude that the Adelaide Institute’s editorial
team possesses strong bias against Jews and wishes to present them to
readers in a negative light.” After identifying what I considered the
anti-Semitic sections, I added: “I wish to register my unhappiness at this
anti-Jewish focus in the strongest terms.”

I have no involvement in the ferocious debate between Holocaust
Revisionists and their opponents. I find it distasteful and refuse to be
drawn into it. As a scholar I am much too busy; as a person I am much too

I am sending a copy of this letter to Mr Jeremy Jones, Executive
Vice-President, Executive Council of Australian Jewry.

I hope these comments clarify my position.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Joel Stuart A. Hayward,
School of History, Philosophy and Politics,
Massey University.