In contrast to the Court of Appeal hearing given last March, this latest bout of Zircons persecution of revisionist, Robert Faurisson, was held in the 17° Chambre Correctionelle of the High Court at the Palais de Justice in Paris, ensuring that numerous members of the public who’d gathered there to support the professor were able to witness the proceedings from the courtroom’s spacious gallery.
Starting an hour late because of the morning session having overrun the allocated time-slot, magistrates initially dealt with several other cases before it was the turn of the world’s foremost ‘Holocaust’ revisionist to defend himself against three separate charges. Two charges for contesting a crime against humanity (one of which brought by former Justice Minister, Pascal Clément) and a third for racial defamation brought by the LICRA (Ligue contre le racisme et l’antisémitisme).
All three complaints targeted a speech made by the professor in 2006 at a conference on the ‘Holocaust’ in Tehran, Iran. A star witness, Lady Michele Renouf, who had travelled from London for the hearing would testify after the initial debates. For once, the number of lawyers on the side of the accused outnumbered those of the prosecution by five to two (five to three, if we include the state prosecutor). Three immense dossiers were produced and placed on the judge’s desk, almost completely hiding the magistrate himself. Cue: hushed, slightly amused tittering from the public benches.
The defence’s principal argument rested on the fact that Faurisson’s speech in Tehran had been delivered in English and had lasted only ten minutes. As his speech had been given outside French territory, French law would not apply. In this case, however, it was the professor’s written essay The Victories of Revisionism, published in Tehran then distributed on the Internet, that had led to the three charges. The article details the major successes of Robert Faurisson’s revisionist career and, in particular, confessions of his adversaries which substantiate the professor’s outright technical and moral victory over his detractors. It is this same article which the professor's lawyer uses consistently in defense of his client during the many trials brought by a judicial system which is plainly rotten to the core.
The judge, a man in his forties with curly, dark ginger hair and a beard, began by reading out Faurisson’s article. The longer the reading went on, the more the judge seemed to be taking in Faurisson’s words. Towards the end, the judge’s face had completely disappeared behind the stapled bundle of A4 sheets in his hand.
Faurisson’s principal counsel Maître Damien Viguer asked that the two complaints for contesting crimes against humanity be dismissed because of legal non-compliance. After a short break for deliberation, the court reserved its ruling in relation to this matter until September 27. Thus, only the third charge of ‘racial defamation’ would be deliberated on this humid afternoon in the centre of the French capital.
The charge of defamation brought by the LICRA concerned the following passages of Faurisson’s article:
“President Ahmadinejad (then head of the Islamic Republic of Iran) used the right word when he said that the alleged Holocaust of the Jews is a myth: that is to say, a belief maintained by credulity or ignorance.
“The alleged ‘Hitlerite gas chambers’ and the alleged genocide of Jews form one and the same historical lie, which allowed a gigantic political and financial swindle whose main beneficiaries are the state of Israel and international Zionism and whose main victims are the German people (…) and the Palestinian people in their entirety.”
The prosecution’s charge of defamation lay solely on the ‘argument’ that, by these statements, Faurisson was clearly targeting the Jewish community. The judge asked Faurisson to explain.
Faurisson’s retorts were confident and unrelenting: citing Israel and international Zionism is not the same as citing “the Jews”. The public as well as the officers of the court present were then treated to a two-hour exposé by the man himself. Unlike orthodox historians who merely repeat the given narrative, he would actually go out on the job, tape measure in hand. The 60-word phrase, he explained, is the summary of his lifetime’s work in the field of revisionism. As he advised his students, the key to success when researching any subject is the ability to distill this work into a phrase of approximately 60 words. The enormous body of work he carried out began in the 1950s when he first asked:
“Show me a photo, an architect’s plan or even a drawing of a gas chamber.”
Faurisson continued his testimony with an explanation of Rudolf Höss’s witness statement at the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal, gained via torture, in particular sleep deprivation. Then, a brief lesson on the explosive quality of Zyklon-B with analysis of actual execution chambers which employ this same gas (no longer used) in the USA. In the 187 pages of court transcripts from Nuremberg concerning Auschwitz, practically nothing is dedicated to the subject of gassing.
The professor went on to expose the lies of Elie Wiesel in his book Night as well as other fabrications concerning execution by boiling water at Treblinka which also feature in the Nuremberg transcript. So many false witnesses: only last week we learned of yet another in the news.
The judge, at this point, interjects with “You’ve therefore not modified your proposals after all this time..?” The female magistrate present appears to have fallen asleep! Such is the contempt for Faurisson’s indisputable strength of character, as apparent and all the more humbling here and now, at the grand old age of 87, as when he started his research more than six decades ago. Faurisson’s conclusions are based on fact, hard evidence, and repeatable scientific experiment and, above all, are the fruit of a lifetime’s study and research. What reason other than insanity would make him change his proposals “after all this time”?
Faurisson elaborates on the magical six-million number. In August 1944, Wilhelm Hötll, friend of Eichman, gave a witness statement purporting that the sensational sum could be reached by adding the four million in the Auschwitz ‘extermination camp’ to another two million slain Soviets. This was the first time the phrase extermination camp was used in place of concentration camp. However, Hötll was never called to testify at Nuremberg.
The prosecution declines the opportunity to cross-examine Faurisson; Maître Viguer invites the professor to talk about the conference in Iran.
Contrary to media reports, the 2008 conference was inclusive of all opinions concerning the ‘Holocaust’. The professor remembers one adversary challenging him to go to the National Archives in Washington where he would see the evidence that his findings were erroneous. The poor fellow hadn’t bargained on the professor already having been to these very same archives where, amongst other clues, he uncovered documents relating to the 32 RAF reconaissance sorties over Auschwitz, none of which had succeeded in showing smoke billowing out from the crematoria chimneys.
Maître Viguier questions the professor further on the origin of all these lies surrounding the “Holocaust”. Faurisson replies that it’s impossible to say; the rumour runs and runs. The International Red Cross had also heard rumours of gas chambers at Auschwitz, yet their investigation team was unable to find anyone confirming these rumours.
At this point, the judge decides to call Lady Renouf to hear her witness statement. As this will be in English, the court has arranged for an accredited interpreter to be present. After giving her name and details, Lady Renouf first congratulates Maître Viguier for his bravery in accepting to defend the professor. Her witness statement follows in short phrases which are immediately translated for the benefit of the court. We hear confirmation that Faurisson’s speech was an impromptu affair which lasted only ten minutes and Lady Renouf makes reference to the professor’s Anglophone heritage, owed to his mother being a Scot. She repeats Faurisson’s anecdote, often used to introduce himself to an English-speaking audience that his French ear should not listen to his Scottish ear because, whereas Scottish law permits inquiry and research into the “Holocaust”, French law does not.
Linguistic confusion arises when Lady Renouf speaks of guidelines (in French, “les consignes”) on how the “Holocaust” should be taught in schools, published in Stockholm in 2000. The translator is unable to translate the word for guidelines, using “guides” instead. Whether or not the greffière recorded a corrected version is uncertain; perhaps the court thought that Lady Renouf was talking about “tour guides”, at Auschwitz or elsewhere?
The Stockholm International Forum on the Holocaust where the ‘Holocaust’ education guidelines were first announced was also the site of two physical attacks on Faurisson by Jewish terrorist organization LDJ (Ligue de Défence Juive or Jewish Defense League). These guidelines instruct all public and private schools worldwide to deny any and all platform to revisionistism. Lady Renouf summarizes, stating that historical debate and rational argument do not seem to be part of educational guidelines on this subject. There are no questions from the court.
Maître Viguier promptly urges the professor to talk about a case dating back to 1983 when he was accused of “falsifying history”. Faurisson explains that this was the catalyst which led to creation of the 1990 Fabius-Gayssot Act. He also recalls the work of British historian and semi-revisionist David Irving, along with the fact that neither Churchill nor de Gaulle ever mentioned any gas chambers in their extensive memoirs. In fact, during WWI already, UK national newspaper the Daily Express had written about enemy gas chambers as early as 1914. An investigation after the war ended in 1918 proved that the story was a propaganda lie. Again, in 1943, the same story about gas chambers appears in the Daily Express. This time, however, there was no similar post-war investigation.
The professor then relates his victories over Raul Hilberg and Jean-Claude Pressac and describes Valerie Igounet’s visit to Vichy to interview him for Le Monde: Igounet didn’t know who Hilberg was. Faurisson also cites Director of Yad Vashem 1953-1959 Ben-Zion Dinur, who resigned after coming to the realization there were far too many false witnesses.
Change of tone as Mâitre Christian Charrière-Bournazel representing the LICRA comes to the bar. He’s clearly unhappy about having been forced to listen to Faurisson for two hours (although it’s doubtful he’ll be complaining quite as much when he receives his fat fees). His only accusation is restricted to the same old refrain: when Faurisson mentions the state of Israel and international Zionism, Faurisson means Jews. Faurisson is a racist. Faurisson has already been convicted on numerous occasions, etc., etc.
The state prosecutor raises even more eyebrows as she tries to stabilize her microphone (no working mic and a dodgy interpreter suggest the French judiciary can’t afford to run their courts properly?). Diabolical smears regarding Faurisson’s personality as well as the obligatory jibe about using the courtroom as a platform from which, according to Madame la Procureure, Faurisson would take immense gratification. Perhaps the most telling phrase amongst all the outright lies and smears (paid for by the French taxpayer, of course) are when the prosecutor states Faurisson should no longer be alloiwed further court appearances.
Maître Viguier once again stands to contest the prosecution's claims. That the professor’s words in Tehran constitute ‘defamation’ is a fraudulent lie. The professor’s work is that of an historian. Viguier protests his colleague’s conflation of Israel and Jews, defiantly and correctly stating that conflict in the Middle East could be seen as one direct result of the lies of the Shoah. Faurisson’s work, he insists, will last as long as does this mensonge (“lie”). Viguier deplores the moral order inflicted upon revisionists in the name of war and war crimes, and which effectively prevent revisionists from doing their job.
The judge invites Faurisson to have the last word. Faurisson is finally able to respond to Charrière-Bournazel’s earlier attacks by comparing the lawyer’s attitude and manner to that of an enflure (in the sense of over-exaggerated, self-importance and turgidity). This warrants an admonition of Faurisson by the judge, who then fails to chastise Charrière-Bournazel for leaving the court in a huff while Faurisson is still speaking.
Faurisson finishes with another couple of examples of dubious witness statements and mistranslations which have been used by propagandists to bolster the case for a presumed genocide of countless Jews. We’re told of the wildly varying death-toll estimates and asked why those who revised the official Auschwitz death toll – down from four to one-and-a-half million – were not punished in the same atrocious manner which Faurisson has been subjected to throughout his career.
The prosecution is demanding a month’s prison sentence and a 3,000-euro fine in the event of a guilty verdict. We shall now have to wait to September 27 to hear the court’s ruling.