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Holocaust Denial

It seems that every time I search for the Holocaust online, there are as many articles denying the Holocaust as there are sites reporting on it. What's behind this Holocaust denial? And what can we do to stop it?

The Aish Rabbi Replies:

Some feel that too much sympathy has been generated for the Jewish people through the Holocaust, and being that these people do not like Jews, they would like the Holocaust to disappear from the pages of history.

Others feel guilty that so many Jews were killed, and hardly anyone did anything to prevent it from happening. In order to alleviate their guilt, they'd rather pretend the whole thing never happened.

There are a few “deniers” who make a lot of noise, and current Holocaust studies are prolific enough to cancel out much of the effect of the deniers. The problem is that even if these “denials” don’t stick, a seed is planted every time someone reads about it. Just by raising these ideas in public discourse, it shifts these ideas from an extremist view to the realm of acceptable opinion.

I think the key to neutralizing these people is to be unfailingly accurate in our reporting of the Holocaust. For example, at one point Aish.com had posted an article entitled "Apple Over the Fence," which told the story of a boy in a concentration camp who was saved from starvation by a young girl who would thrown him an apple every day over the fence. Twenty years later and half a world away, these two people were set up on a blind date, then realized who each other was and got married. The man became famous, telling his amazing story on “Oprah” and signing a motion picture deal.

It turns out, however, that Holocaust researchers identified how various details of the story were inconsistent with the layout and activities at the concentration camp where the man said it all took place. The story was discredited, and Aish.com removed it from our website.

It is stories like this that are used by Holocaust deniers to try to discredit the mountains of absolutely true evidence. Thus the best weapon we can use against the deniers is to maintain total accuracy from our own side.

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