The Holocaust Historiography Project

Quotes from JHR Volume 13 number 1

'Historically Inaccurate'

Too many books are written on the Holocaust. There are too many films and television plays that exploit the subject …

There is a fascination with the Holocaust and with Nazism. There may, in fact, be “no business like Shoah business.” The problem is that many of these productions, if not most, are historically inaccuate, sentimental, romantic, exotic and hyperbolic, and so they ultimately distort and cheapen the Holocaust.

The popularization and commercialization of the Holocaust is not only unhistorical but it is anti-historical. Over time, it will inevitably subvert the historical sense and strip it of any moral implications it may carry.

-- Dr. Michael M. Dobkowski, Professor of Religious Studies at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, writing in Martyrdom and Resistance (published by the International Society for Yad Vashem, New York City), Sept.-Oct. 1990, p. 4.

Since a politician never believes what he says, he is surprised when others believe him.

-- Charles De Gaulle

'In Fashion'

Historical revisionism is very much in fashion in books about presidents, prime ministers and generals.

-- Herbert Mitgang, New York Times, Feb. 5, 1992, p. B2.

'Most Patriotic'

Every Jew alive today is a Holocaust survivor, and I feel that also will be true for every Jew in the future … The Holocaust survivors are the most patriotic, most loyal American citizens we could have.

-- Neil Sher, director of the US government’s “Office of Special Investigations,” speaking at a “Yom HaShoah” meeting in Long Island, New York. Quoted in Jewish World (Long Island), May 8-14, 1992.

Jewish Concern with Holocaust 'Obsession' Means New Holocaust, Says Rabbi

“There is almost nothing more sacred or more sensitive for Jews living in the generation after the Holocaust than the memory of the six million martyrs of Nazi genocide … Now that 'revisionists,' who seek to deny the Holocaust, have become even more brazen, sensitive Jews are reacting with even greater obsession.

“But obsession with the Holocaust is exacting a great price. It is killing America’s Jews… Jews as a group are drifting away from their religion … Unless there will be, within the very near future, a dramatic turnaround in the patterns of Jewish assimilation and intermarriage, we are probably witnessing the last generation of Jewish life in America as we now know it.

“… Right now the priority seems to be building Holocaust memorials. More than $500 million has already been pledged or spent to build 19 Holocaust memorials and 36 research centers or libraries in America. Some cities, like Los Angeles, have two or three competing Holocaust memorials …

“There is a Holocaust taking place in America right now. We can’t hear it, because there are no barking dogs … We can’t smell it because there are no gas chambers. But the net result is exactly the same.”

-- Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald, “The Holocaust is Killing American Jews,” Los Angeles Times, April 28, 1992.