An Orthodox Historian Finally Acknowledges:
There is No Evidence for Nazi Gas Chambers

Dr. Robert Faurisson

July/August 1998
Issue: Volume 17 number 4


* In his 1996 study, Hitler's Willing Executioners, an exceedingly
anti-German work, Daniel J. Goldhagen wrote: "Gassing was really epiphenomenal to the
Germans' slaughter of Jews." 11 And in a 1996 interview with a major Austrian
weekly news magazine he stated: "For me the industrialized annihilation of the
Jews is not the central question in explaining the Holocaust ... The gas
chambers are a symbol. But it is absurd to believe that the Holocaust would not
have taken place without the gas chambers." 12. In this same book (p. 523, n. 4)
Goldhagen also writes, "The imbalance of attention devoted to the gas
chambers needs to be corrected."


Born in 1939, Jacques Baynac is a French historian who is the author of
several books.1 A scholar whose sympathies lean to the left, he harbors a definite
hostility toward revisionists (whom he calls "deniers"), and particularly
toward revisionist writer and publisher Pierre Guillaume and myself. For years he
affirmed the existence of Nazi homicidal gas chambers.

In 1996, though, Baynac acknowledged in two lengthy articles published in a
Swiss daily newspaper that, taking everything into account, one is forced to
admit -- even if it is "as painful to say as it is to hear" -- that the
well-known "testimonies" are not sufficient proof of wartime homicidal gas chambers,
and that it is simply not possible to prove, scientifically, that the homicidal
gas chambers actually existed.

Given this lack of any direct proof, he continued, it will now be necessary
to seek an indirect proof. Because one cannot prove that Nazi gas chambers
existed, he goes on to write, it will instead be necessary to prove that it is
impossible that they did not exist! Specifically, he writes: "If scholarly
history cannot, because of the lack of documentation, establish the reality of a
fact, it can, by means of documentation, establish that the unreality of this
fact is itself unreal." 2

Baynac made these remarkable statements in two lengthy articles published in
the Swiss newspaper Le Nouveau Quotidien de Lausanne, September 2, 1996 (p.
16), and September 3, 1996 (p. 14).

The Evasion of Historians

In the first of these two articles, Baynac begins by deploring France's
anti-revisionist "Fabius-Gayssot" law of July 13, 1990, which he says allows "the
deniers' sect" to use the courts as podiums for their views. He notes that this
law has been criticized by Claude Imbert of Le Point magazine, historian
Pierre Vidal-Naquet (who has said: "I am ready to kill Faurisson, but not to
pursue him in a court of law!"), Madeleine Rebérioux (former president of the
"Human Rights League"), anti-revisionist attorney Charles Korman, and several
parliamentary deputies of the Gaullist RPR party.

Baynac affirms that the revisionists/deniers have plenty of reason for
rejoicing, especially since the Abbé Pierre affair "changed the atmosphere" in their
favor. Baynac also notes that among the anti-revisionists, "disarray has
given way to consternation," that historian Pierre Vidal-Naquet "is grieved," that
the prominent French-Jewish intellectual Bernard-Henri Lévy "is beside
himself," that Pierre-André Taguieff "is frightened," and that the front cover of an
issue of the French magazine L'Événement du jeudi ("The Thursday Event")
proclaimed "The Victory of the Revisionists."

Baynac denounces Jorge Semprun, an intellectual and former deportee, for
having irresponsibly "murdered" a book by Florent Brayard that attacks French
revisionist writer Paul Rassinier. Baynac believes that among Leftists there has
come into being a "paranoia," a "witch-hunt" (in the words of Jean-François
Kahn), and a "disastrous chaos." He notes that Simone Veil and Dominique Jamet
share his dislike of the Fabius-Gayssot law, and that "one refuses to debate"
the revisionists.

Baynac recalls the declaration by "34 reputable historians" published in the
prominent French daily Le Monde on February 21, 1979 -- a stupefying
declaration that responded to but did not answer my challenge, which had appeared
earlier in the paper, calling for an explanation of how, technically, the magical
Nazi gas chambers were supposed to have operated. In this regard, Baynac writes
of the "evasion" of historians in general, and goes on to declare that "the
historians have retreated."

Neither Documents, Traces, Nor Proofs

In the second of his two articles, Baynac deplores the fact that
anti-revisionist historians have trusted Jean-Claude Pressac, a pharmacist and "amateur
historian," who now concludes that the number of Jewish and non-Jewish dead at
Auschwitz amounts "to a total of 600,000 victims." 3 Baynac derides historian
François Bayrou, France's Minister of National Education, who, conscious of the
difficulties in trying to prove the "Holocaust" genocide and wartime
homicidal gas chambers, advocates recourse to a "less burdened" historical method.
Baynac sees in this a "light historical concept."

Baynac believes that Nazi gas chambers existed, but thinks that those who
have tried to prove their existence have overly employed an "ascientific"
methodology, rather than a "scientific" one. In this "ascientific" method, he goes
on, "testimony prevails," while in the "scientific" method documents prevail.
However, he adds with regret, one is able only to ascertain "the absence of
documents, traces, or other material proofs." 4

Baynac recalls the admission made in 1988 by Jewish-American historian Arno
Mayer, who teaches at Princeton University: "Sources for the study of the gas
chambers are at once rare and unreliable." 5 Baynac goes on to say that "we do
not have available indispensable elements for a normal undertaking of the
historical method," and that "one must remain silent for lack of documents." He
concludes with a remarkable concession: "it is necessary to recognize that the
lack of traces involves the inability to directly establish the reality of the
existence of homicidal gas chambers." 6 When he writes "the lack of traces,"
he means, as already mentioned, "the absence of documents, traces, or other
material proofs."

Proofs for Tomorrow?

Baynac's study concludes with the suggestion, already mentioned: because it
is decidedly impossible to prove that the gas chambers existed, let us try in
the future to prove that these gas chambers were not able not to have existed!

This is an example of admitting a present-day inadequacy while postulating an
act of faith for the future. Baynac is naive. He believes that because so
many historians have emphatically affirmed the reality of the "Holocaust" horrors
and the homicidal gas chambers, and so many survivors have claimed to have
seen them, therefore they undoubtedly existed. He does not realize that, with
time, one discovers that the writing of history is full of histories that are
more or less imaginary.

He continues to believe in the gas chambers, just as he seems to persist in
believing in Communism. Tomorrow, one will find proof for these gas chambers.
Tomorrow, Communism will be true. Tomorrow, one will get a free lunch.
Tomorrow, one will finally have the proof that National Socialism is the incarnation
of evil and that Communism is the incarnation of good. Let's hear it for the
eternal credulity of the French intelligentsia!

Baynac joins, as it were, the "34 reputable historians" who, as already
mentioned, in 1979 published one of the most monumental pieces of nonsense of
French academic life: "It is not necessary to ask oneself how, technically, such a
mass murder was possible. It was technically possible because it happened."
Baynac thus adds his name to those of the 34 orthodox scholars who, without
intending it, were obliged to agree with the revisionist historians on several
important issues. This inevitably raises a question: how can judges continue to
condemn revisionists for contesting a crime that, as Baynac now acknowledges,
has not been proven?

Embarrassing Gas Chambers

It is quite clear that the "Nazi gas chambers" are ever more embarrassing for
those who uphold the "Holocaust" thesis of Jewish extermination. As early as
1984, Pierre Vidal-Naquet warned friends who were already attempting to
abandon the "gas chambers" that to do so would be "to capitulate in open country" 7
And in 1987 a periodical hostile to revisionism published a letter by two
French-Jewish teachers, Ida Zajdel and Marc Ascione, suggesting that the Nazis had
faked their confessions, and only mentioned gas chambers in order to plant "a
delayed action 'bomb' against the Jews, an instrument of diversion and, why
not, of blackmail." 8

There are many other examples worth citing, but I will content myself here
with citing just three recent ones: that of Elie Wiesel (in 1994), that of a
Dutch professor of Jewish-Polish origin, Michel Korzec (in 1995), and finally,
that of the Jewish-American historian Daniel Jonah Goldhagen (in 1996):

* In 1994, Wiesel wrote in his memoir, All Rivers Run to the Sea: "Let the
gas chambers remain closed to prying eyes, and to imagination." 9 In plain
English this means: "Let's not try to see, or even imagine, a Nazi gas chamber."
What follows inevitably from this is that Wiesel is quite skeptical of the
alleged witnesses who, supposedly, have described what happened in the gas

* In 1995 Michel Korzec declared that too much emphasis has been put on the
gas chambers and the number of gassing victims. With dialectic contortions
worthy of a cabalist, he went on to argue that it was the Germans, and not the
Jews, who are responsible for this error. In Korzec's view, many more Germans
participated in the "mass murder" of Jews than has been assumed, and in many
more places across Europe -- many more than the small number of Germans
supposedly involved in gas chamber killings of Jews. 10

* In his 1996 study, Hitler's Willing Executioners, an exceedingly
anti-German work, Daniel J. Goldhagen wrote: "Gassing was really epiphenomenal to the
Germans' slaughter of Jews." 11 And in a 1996 interview with a major Austrian
weekly news magazine he stated: "For me the industrialized annihilation of the
Jews is not the central question in explaining the Holocaust ... The gas
chambers are a symbol. But it is absurd to believe that the Holocaust would not
have taken place without the gas chambers." 12

So, by 1996 the gas chambers had become a symbol!

A Swiss Newspaper Sets An Example

In recent years I have described at various times, in samizdat essays and in
interviews recorded by Ernst Zündel in Canada, this evolution by the
"exterminationists" regarding the "Nazi gas chambers." In a text I wrote on September
22, 1993 (and which I intend to publish in my forthcoming book), I predicted
that one day organized Jewry eventually would be obliged to give up the lie
about Nazi gas chambers, while at the same time still insisting that "the
Holocaust" is an irrefutable truth. Consistent with this, the US Holocaust Memorial
Museum in Washington, has decided not to provide any physical representation of
a German homicidal gas chamber (except for a door of a delousing gas chamber
and an absurd and "artistic" model). 13

The two 1996 articles by Jacques Baynac in the Swiss daily paper are only a
stage in this metamorphosis of official historiography. Baynac's articles
confirm that, for quite some time now, historians have broken with the facade of
unanimity. Step by step, historians are rejecting the simplistic conclusions of
the Nuremberg Tribunal regarding gas chambers and genocide.

When French judges declare that challenging the existence of Nazi gas
chambers is to challenge "crimes against humanity" (which the genocide of the Jews
would have been), they are correct. However, if there is no longer any proof of
a specific murder weapon, logically there is no longer any proof of a specific
crime. This conclusion, rather embarrassing for the judges who dare to
condemn revisionism, follows inevitably from the position taken by Baynac, a
position that, once again, is not in any way peculiar to him but represents a general
trend in orthodox historiography. Baynac is simply saying out loud what his
colleagues have been thinking in silence.

In publishing these two articles by Baynac, Le Nouveau Quotidien of Lausanne,
normally so hostile toward revisionism, has shown both discernment and
respect for its readers. 14

Jacques Baynac: "There are no proofs, yet I believe."
Robert Faurisson: "There are no proofs, therefore I refuse to believe."

For the first: freedom of expression.

For the second: a sentence of one month to one year of prison, a fine of
2,000 to 300,000 francs, and additional penalties.



Among the most noteworthy of Baynac's books have been La Terreur sous Lénine
("The Terror Under Lenin," 1975), Ravachol et ses compagnons ("Ravachol and
His Companions," 1976), Mai retrouvé ("May [1968] Revisited," 1978), Les
Socialistes révolutionnaires russes, 1881-1917 ("The Russian Revolutionary
Socialists, 1881-1917," 1979), and La Révolution gorbatchévienne ("The Gorbachev
Revolution," 1988). In 1987, he published, along with historian Nadine Fresco, an
anti-revisionist article in the Paris daily Le Monde entitled "Comment s'en
débarrasser?" ("How Can We Get Rid of Them?" [that is, the revisionists]), June 18,
1987, p. 2.

1. "... si l'histoire scientifique ne peut, faute de documents, établir la
réalité d'un fait, elle peut, avec des documents, établir que l'irréalité de ce
fait est elle-même irréelle. En établissant que l'inexistence des chambres à
gaz est impossible, on liquidera définitivement la prétention du négationnisme
à se poser comme une école historique ..." Le Nouveau Quotidien (Lausanne),
Sept. 3, 1996, p. 14.
2. La Déportation: Le Système concentrationnaire nazi ("The Deportation: The
Nazi Concentration Camp System"), a work published under the direction of
François Bédarida and Laurent Gervereau (BDIC, 1995), p. 196. Here Pressac
estimates from 600,000 to 800,000 Auschwitz deaths,
3. This is quite a drop from the figure of 9,000,000 given in the
widely-viewed film "Night and Fog," or 4,000,000 as established by the Nuremberg
Tribunal and as inscribed until 1990 on plaques at the monument at the Auschwitz camp
site (where since 1995 the new figure is 1,500,000).
4. On Pressac, see also: R. Faurisson, "Auschwitz: Technique and Operation
of the Gas Chambers," Spring 1991 Journal, pp. 25-66 (Part I), and Summer 1991
Journal, pp. 133-175 (Part II); Arthur R. Butz, "Some Thoughts on Pressac's
Opus," May-June 1993 Journal, pp. 23-37; Serge Thion, "A French Scholar Responds
to a Widely-Acclaimed Anti-Revisionist Work," July-August 1994 Journal, pp.
28 ff.; "'The Jewish World' Against Pressac," Jan.-Feb. 1996 Journal, p. 41.
5. "... l'absence de documents, de traces ou d'autres preuves matérielles
..." Le Nouveau Quotidien, Sept. 3, 1996, p. 14.
6. A. Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken?: The "Final Solution" in
History (New York: Pantheon, 1989), p. 362.
7. "... il faut reconnaître que la manque de traces entraîne l'incapacité
d'établir directement la réalité de l'existence des chambres à gaz homicides."
Le Nouveau Quotidien (Lausanne), Sept. 3, 1996, p. 14.
8. "Le Secret partagé" ("The Shared Secret"), Le Nouvel Observateur, Sept.
21, 1984, p. 80.
9. Article 31, Jan.-Feb. 1987, p. 22.
10. E. Wiesel, All Rivers Run to the Sea, Memoirs (New York: Random House/
Knopf, 1995), p. 74.
11. M. Korzec, "De mythe van de efficiënte massamoord" ("The Myth of
Efficient Mass Murder"), Intermediair, December 15, 1995. See also: R. Faurisson, "A
New Version of the Holocaust Story," March-April 1996 Journal, pp. 22-23.
12. D. J. Goldhagen, Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the
Holocaust (New York: Knopf, 1996), p. 521, n. 81. In this same book (p. 523,
n. 4) Goldhagen also writes, "The imbalance of attention devoted to the gas
chambers needs to be corrected."
13. Profil (Vienna), September 9, 1996, p. 75: "Die industrielle Vernichtung
der Juden ist für mich nicht die Kernfrage zur Erklärung des Holocaust ... Die
Gaskammern sind ein Symbol. Es ist aber ein Unsinn zu glauben, daß der
Holocaust ohne Gaskammern nicht stattgefunden hätte."
14. During a visit to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum on August 30, 1994, I
met with the Museum's Research Director, Michael Berenbaum. He told me, in the
presence of witnesses, that "the decision had been made not to present any
physical representation of a Nazi gas chamber." See also: R. Faurisson, "The US
Holocaust Memorial Museum: A Challenge," July-August 1993 Journal, pp. 14-17; "
Gas Chamber Door Fraudulently Portrayed at US Holocaust Museum,"
September-October 1993 Journal, p. 39; and, R. Faurisson, "Auschwitz: Facts and Legend,"
July-August 1997 Journal, pp. 16-17.
15. In the Baynac article in the September 2 issue of Le Nouveau Quotidien,
p. 16, there are three minor errors: in the second column, one should read
"Florent Brayard" (instead of "Florent Rassinier"); in the third column,
"Jean-François Kahn" (in place of "Khan"); and, in the forth column, "Il ne faut pas se
demander comment techniquement ...," instead of "Il ne faut pas se demander
si techniquement ...," or, "It is not necessary to ask oneself how" (instead of
"ask oneself if").

About the author:

Dr. Robert Faurisson was educated at the Paris Sorbonne, and served as a
professor at the University of Lyon in France from 1974 until 1990. He was a
specialist of text and document analysis. His writings on the Holocaust issue have
appeared in four books and numerous scholarly articles, many of which have
been published in this Journal.

This essay is a translation and adaptation of a text written in September

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