Friday, September 28, 2007

The Crazy World of Walter Sanning (Part 4)

Author: Jonathan Harrison
In Part 3 of this series, we highlighted Sanning's false dating of Nazi demographic data. This fourth part looks at two other forms of distortion. Firstly, we highlight Sanning's misrepresentation of eyewitness testimony to the Eichmann trial. Secondly we examine his misuse of Jewish enclyclopaedia sources.

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Sanning (p.41) discusses the eyewitness testimony given by Zvi Pachter in the Eichmann trial, and cites Pachter’s description of Jews being force marched “four abreast in long columns” across the Nazi-Soviet demarcation line. However, Sanning omits to mention these parts of the testimony:
Q. Of the two thousand who began the march, how many reached the border?

A. Few, very few, perhaps one hundred persons.


[A] I don't want to go into the details of the tragedy, for they are not relevant to this trial - but they sent us back there.

Q. What do you mean by "there" - to the area of the Generalgouvernement in Germany?

A. Yes, to this bridge, for this was the bridge between Sokal, the town that belonged to the Soviet Union, and the suburb that belonged to the German Generalgouvernement. Thus they returned us to the Germans - yes, to the Germans.
Contrary to Sanning’s claim, therefore, the witness was giving evidence of a large death rate during German forced marches of the Jews, and he testified that the Soviets had a policy of forcing the Jews back across the line. It is impossible that 750,000 Jews could have crossed the line in the manner described by the witness. Moreover, Sanning takes his quotes from Rassinier’s 1963 ‘account’ of the trial, so his distortion is not even original. Sanning has simply recycled a falsehood from an earlier denial guru.

A further technique used by Sanning that is tantamount to fraud is his use of old encyclopaedia entries, even when they have been superseded by more recent encyclopaedias. In other words, not only does Sanning shamefully lean on a secondary source to distort primary ones, he chooses one that was subsequently corrected. For example, Sanning (p.40) quotes an entry on the city of Tomaszow Lubelski from Volume 15 of the Encyclopaedia Judaica, published in 1972, which claimed that “75% of the city’s 6,000 Jews left together with the Red Army when it withdrew to the newly established line of demarcation further east” in 1939. However, the more recent Pinkas Hakehillot Polin entry, written in 1976, states that only 2,000 Jews fled whilst 3,500 remained . Moreover, Sanning has a clear motive to shift this town’s population into Soviet territory: most of the remaining Jews were gassed at Belzec.

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