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IF DENYING THE HOLOCAUST is a crime in France, what does that mean for stories like the one that broke this weekend about Hitler’s orders to SS General Karl Friedrich Otto Wolff to kidnap Pope Pius because of suspicions the Catholic Church was helping Jews escape the Nazis? The official story over the last several years, after all, has been that the Catholic Church somehow conspired with Hitler, not opposed him. Will it be a crime to debate these new revelations in France today? Presumably not, but it doesn’t take a giant leap of imagination to picture how it could become one.
The Holocaust is no “detail” of history. Those who dismiss it are universally known as cranks. But silencing any point of view necessarily is a danger to all points of view. Official histories are dangerous and discourage legitimate debate and education about our histories. Certainly, the French have no interest in the U.S. version of several events in World War II. Further, there were no calls to ban the bestselling French book laying out how American military planners faked the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon, although I would hope that we did not is as obvious as the fact that the Holocaust occurred.
With regard to the Holocaust, the facts are very basic. So, first and foremost, there is no reason to believe any true deniers could gain traction. The world, as a whole, has elevated the massacre to a place in human consciousness few other events hold. Ironically, the most powerful tool deniers have is this idea that they have been silenced and must have been silenced for a reason. If they are kooks (and I must reiterate, for sensitivities sake, I believe they are), why not let them be unmasked as such publicly, with all the ridicule that entails?
As for those of you wondering what happened to the rest of Voltaire’s body, he was laid to rest at the Pantheon in Paris in 1791. But in 1814 his remains were stolen and dumped by French nationalists onto a garbage heap, where I believe one can also currently find France’s protections for freedom of speech.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?