Tuesday, June 23, 2015

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (5.1)

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (1)

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (2)

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (3)

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (4)

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (5.2)

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (6)

On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (7)

Always obliging when it comes to complying with my requests, my good friend Friedrich Jansson didn’t keep me waiting too long for error-nitpicking exercise "Vb", which it will be my pleasure to dissect.


Jansson’s essential claim is that the carcass incineration experiments performed by German veterinarians Dr. Lothes and Dr. Profé in the early 20th Century, which are mentioned in the blogs Animal Carcass Burning Experiments by Dr. Lothes and Dr. Profé and Mattogno, Graf & Kues on Aktion Reinhard(t) Cremation (2) as well as on on pp. 463 ff. of the HC critique, did not result in a complete combustion of the incinerated carcasses but only carbonized the same.

However, Jansson wouldn’t be Jansson if his essential claim, and the arguments adduced in support thereof, were not preceded by some of Jansson’s by now familiar rhetoric, followed by a series of preliminary considerations.

I shall address the rhetoric and the preliminary considerations in the present blog. Another blog will deal with Jansson’s arguments regarding what he calls the "vital question", i.e. the question whether Lothes and Profé achieved complete cremation or their experiments were "aimed only at more or less complete carbonization".

The rhetoric starts with a remark that includes the inevitable epithet "absurd", which "Revisionists" like to apply to all arguments contrary to their articles of faith.

This is followed by a heavy-handed claim that is as bold as it is baseless ("We will not rehearse the facts about mass cremation here, […] that prove the impossibility of the Reinhardt cremations taking place in the manner alleged, and dramatically and uniformly contradict the portrait of cremation given in witness statements regarding the Reinhardt camps"), and even if there were something to it "Revisionists" wouldn’t have got very far, for the reasons mentioned at the beginning of this series’ first installment.

Then comes Jansson’s often repeated claim that "Muehlenkamp generally ignores reality in favor of long lines of speculative extrapolations, which can be massaged until they give the answer desired" - an accusation that, besides being as mendacious as one would expect after Jansson’s past performances, is amusingly self-projecting as it comes from a conspiracy theorist who clings to a belief system that is at odds with the convergence of known evidence and has no evidence whatsoever to support it (among other missing elements, there is not even a single name of a "transited" Jew, 72 years after the supposed "transit camps" were closed down, which fact alone would make "Revisionists" acknowledge that their theories are a load of hollow humbug, if they were not dishonestly pursuing an ideological agenda).

Last but not least, we have a good old straw-man argument whereby my "methodology" implies that "a pyre containing thousands of pig carcasses needs only be set on fire and will then self-cremate". This straw-man is addressed in the blog Friedrich Jansson changes the subject.

Jansson having thus (again) destroyed his credibility in the very first paragraph of his blog, his attempt in the second paragraph to give his writing a "scientific" touch, or rather his bragging about what his article will "show", can only evoke amusement.

The third paragraph contains the aforementioned preliminary considerations, which I will comment one by one.

Jansson:
A set of experiments[104] by the veterinarians Lothes and Profé, performed over a century ago, are the basis of Muehlenkamp’s calculations of fuel requirements. Even at first glance, they are a rather doubtful foundation, given that they dealt not with mass cremation but with the disposal of single large carcasses and that Muehlenkamp ignores a great deal of specific evidence concerning fuel requirements of mass cremation (which give figures much less favorable to his argument).
Fuel requirements in the cremation of single carcasses are a conservative rather than a "doubtful" foundation for estimating fuel requirements in mass cremation, if one considers the following information in a source that was invoked by Jansson himself:
Experience has demonstrated that carcases can be completely consumed using dry wood alone at the rate of 1.5 tonnes for a 500 kg adult bovine or 1.5 tonnes of coal briquettes or equivalent combinations. For multiple carcases, the amount of fuel may be reduced to 1.0 tonne per adult bovine because of economies of scale.
(Emphasis added.)

The above information suggests that fuel requirements in mass cremation are, if anything, relatively lower than fuel requirements in individual cremation on a per-mass-unit basis.

As to my having ignored "a great deal of specific evidence concerning fuel requirements of mass cremation", Jansson seems to have "forgotten" the examples giving figures much less favorable to my argument that I listed i.a. here, before mentioning Lothes & Profé’s experiments and explaining why I considered these to be the closest parallel (after the cremations on the Dresden Altmarkt following the city’s bombing on 13/14 February 1945) to the AR camp’s cremation pyres.

This is all the more surprising if one considers Jansson’s lengthy attacks against these examples or my reading of the respective sources, which were the subject of this series’ second and third installments. Is Jansson having problems with his short-time memory? If so, that would also explain his having omitted the fact that in this blog I pointed out sources about mass cremation of carcasses to Mattogno, who originally thought he could establish fuel requirements in mass cremation at the AR camps based on his own backyard beef-burning experiments.

Jansson:
One might recall that contemporaneous observers referred to Lothes and Profé’s methods as being impractical (umständlich)[105] and as suffering from the disadvantage of requiring constant expert supervision.[106]
As concerns the first of the sources mentioned by Jansson ("Zwick, Die unschädliche Beseitigung der Tierkadaver und die[sic!] Fleischkonfiskate", p. 7, in: Transactions of the IXth International Veterinary Congress at The Hague, 13-19 September 1909"), whence exactly might one "recall" what Jansson claims, if Jansson’s blog is (unless I missed something) the first piece of "Revisionist" scripture to mention this source, and Jansson does not have the courtesy of providing a scan or transcription of the source or its relevant parts (plus, as the source seems to be in German, a translation for the benefit of those who don’t read German)?

Providing a scan and a translation or transcription was what I did here regarding Lothes & Profé's article "Zur unschädlichen Beseitigung von Thiercadavern auf dem Wege der Verbrennung", in: Berliner Thierärztliche Wochenschrift, Year 1902, No. 37, pp. 557 to 560, as well as a related excerpt from the Eighth Annual Report of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Part I. 1902. WM Stanley Ray, State Printer of Pennsylvania. 1903. The latter of these sources quotes a professional publication (Veterinary Journal, Vol. VII, No. 37), which refers to Lothes & Profé’s experiments and to earlier experiments by Dr. Profé alone in rather favorable terms, especially as concerns fuel expenditure.

Zwick’s article mentioned by Jansson can be found here, scroll down to p. 365 of the PDF file, and further down to p. 370 of the file for Zwick’s description of Lothes & Profé’s experiments. Zwick doesn’t mention to what degree the carcasses were consumed in Lothes & Profés experiments, though in regard to another method, burning in a pit as devised by district veterinarian Volmer in Hattingen, he mentions that the heating material used (split logs drenched in petroleum) is stated to develop a very intensive heat and to completely carbonize (vollständig verkohlen) the carcass within five hours.

Regarding Lothes & Profé’s more efficient method, the one in which the carcass is burned inside a pit over a smaller pit containing the flammable material, Zwick points out that for burning 100 kg of carcass 40 kg of wood, 30 kg of brown coal or 24 of black coal were enough ("Zur Verbrennung von 100 Kg Kadaver genügten etwa 40 Kg Holz oder 30 Kg. Braun- oder 24 Kg Steinkohle."). Contrary to what Jansson claims, Zwick doesn’t call L&P’s procedure (and that of Volmer) "impractical", for "umständlich" does not mean "impractical" (that would be "unpraktisch"); a more correct translation would be "cumbersome" or "laborious". Zwick writes that, while being "zweckmässig" (a term that translates as "functional", "advisable", "advantageous", "appropriate", "convenient", "practicable", "practical", "purposeful" or "purposive"), these procedures are also somewhat cumbersome/laborious:
So zweckmässig diese Methoden nun auch sein mögen, so sind sie doch etwas umständlich, auch können u. U. Witterungseinflüsse ihre Durchführung vereiteln und zudem ist auch nicht in allen Gegenden geeignetes und billiges Brennmaterial zu beschaffen.
Translation:
However functional these methods may be, they are however somewhat laborious, and their execution may also be impeded by climatic conditions, further one cannot obtain adequate and cheap burning material in all regions.
So if there’s anything to be "recalled" here, it is that Jansson misrepresented Zwick’s assessment of Lothes & Profé’s method, so as to make it look as if Zwick had a wholly negative opinion of this method, while actually Zwick also pointed out the low fuel consumption and considered the procedure to be "functional", though "laborious".

Jansson’s second source is a quote from W. Heepke, Die Kadaver-Vernichtungsanlagen on p. 1376 (not p. 1240, as Jansson states) of MGK’s magnum opus). Though apparently familiar with the German language, Mattogno mistranslates Heepke’s remark:
Die einzige Schwierigkeit liegt nur darin, dass stets ein Sachverständiger den Prozess in die Wege leiten muss.
as follows:
The only difficulty was that the process had to be constantly supervised by an expert.
Actually Heepke said nothing about constant supervision in the above-quoted sentence. "In die Wege leiten" literally translates as "to put on its way" and means "to initiate something" or "to engineer something", according to the Leo online dictionary. So the correct translation of Heepke’s remark would be the following:
The only difficulty is that the process always has to be initiated (engineered) by an expert.
Finding an expert to initiate the cremation process might be difficult for a farmer needing to burn diseased carcasses in a remote region, hence presumably Heepke’s remark about what he otherwise seems to have considered an appropriate method. But it was not a difficulty for the SS at the AR camps, who had an expert on open-air cremation matters (SS-Scharführer Herbert Floss or Herbert Floß) at their disposal.

While I might still give Mattogno the benefit of doubt, I know Jansson’s German to be good enough for him to have recognized this mistranslation, which of course is favorable to his argument whereas the correct translation is not. Jansson also failed to inform his readers that Heepke considered the need of an expert to get the process going to be the only disadvantage or difficulty ("Die einzige Schwierigkeit") of Lothes & Profé’s method. But then, Jansson has already shown before that he’s an inveterate liar, whose rendering of sources should be taken with a big grain of salt (examples see the previous installment of this series).

Jansson:
One might point out that the study’s specific mention of abundant fat supply from the cremated beast[107] contrasts sharply with the situation which prevailed at the Reinhardt camps.
Does it? Let’s look at L&P’s 1902 article (my translation), first of all. The article mentions the carcass of "a very well fed cow" in what seems to have been a rudimentary pyre in which the carcass was simply placed on top of the burning material (brown coal briquettes), which was then set on fire with the help of petroleum. The authors mention that due to the carcass’s "abundant fat" the fire was entertained although "no more burning material was added, obviously for reasons of economy". However, this was not one of L&P’s experiments, but a burning that they observed and that gave them the idea to perform these experiments. It should be noted that the cost of burning the carcass was given as being just 3 marks, which is considerably less than in any of L&P’s experiments. This suggests that the amount of wood equivalent per kg of carcass was somewhat lower than in L&P’s experiments. However, the duration of the burning, which lasted about 40 hours, was not considered satisfactory by the veterinarians.

L&P’s experiments I, II, IV and V involved horse carcasses. I don’t know that horses tend to be fat, and horse meat is noted for its low fat content. Only regarding one of these experiments, nr. IV, do the authors mention that the carcass was a "very massive and fatty" one, which suggests that the fat content of the other carcasses was not so high. As concerns the bovine carcasses in experiments III and VI, the authors don’t point out that these carcasses were particularly fat, which suggests that they weren’t. Experiment nr. IV was the most fuel-efficient (0.41 kg of wood per kg of carcass, according to my calculations, the accuracy of which is borne out by L&P’s statement that for burning 100 kg of carcass "about 40 kg of wood or about 30 kg of brown coal or 24 kg of black coal are sufficient"), but not by a large margin in comparison with the other experiments except experiment nr. III, in which the ratio was 0.75 kg of wood per kg of carcass.

So as concerns fat content the situation in L&P’s experiments didn’t necessarily contrast "sharply" with the situation at the AR camps, as Jansson would have it. Moreover, fat seems to have played a part in the cremation process at these camps as well, the role of "corpses that appeared to contain some fat being placed on the bottom of the pile" in starting and entertaining the fire having been reported at least as concerns Treblinka (see Bruce V. Ettling’s article Consumption of an Animal Carcass in a Fire, also quoted here). Despite the generally malnourished state of Jews from Polish ghettos, it is not unlikely that also there certain privileged segments of the population were better fed than the average, like there were such privileged segments in besieged Leningrad. Additionally, both Treblinka and Sobibór also received, especially during the cremation phase of these camps’ operation, a considerable number of deportees from outside Poland, who would have been better fed on average as they had not gone through the rigors of ghetto life.

Thus another of Jansson’s "One might point out" contentions fails, and by generalizing the "abundant fat supply from the cremated beast", which L&P mentioned only regarding one of their experiments and an observed cremation that was not part of these experiments, Jansson has once more shown that his rendering of sources cannot be trusted.

Jansson:
One might also ask why, despite over a century having passed, the results have never been replicated, why on the contrary other sources (including another study published in the same journal in the same year[108]) consistently report higher fuel requirements.
First of all, at least in some of the carcass cremation cases mentioned by his fellow "Revisionist" Köchel, as pointed out here, the fuel to body mass ratio was below 2:1 or even close to or below 1:1. In the carcass burning experiment with air curtain incinerator equipment described in the USDA/TAHC report mentioned here and here, the fuel to body mass ratio was 0.58:1 or 1.74:1, depending on how one interprets the information in the aforementioned USDA report (see this blog for details).

In this context, it should be taken into account that, as I pointed out in the second installment of this series, guidelines about the amount of fuel required in carcass cremation are also but not only concerned with fuel efficiency (besides the likeliness of achieving the desired result). A number of other desiderata related to environmental/legal requirements (e.g. the need to minimize emissions and air pollution and avoid run-off from the site that might cause pollution of waters or site contamination, as well as black smoke or smoke that may be an aviation hazard or affect the health of sensitive persons, especially asthma sufferers) may influence the type and amount of fuel considered necessary. Such environmental/legal requirements are more stringent at present than they were in the early 20th Century, and the same goes for public sensitivity to environmental and health issues. Therefore, it is entirely possible that the mentioned guidelines recommend amounts of fuel that are higher than the minimum amounts deemed sufficient to achieve the required degree of combustion, in order to be on the safe side as concerns compliance with said requirements. So if fuel to body mass ratios in recent cases of mass cremation, or according to related guidelines, are somewhat (not necessarily much) higher than those achieved in Lothes & Profé’s experiments, this need not mean that the (usually governmental) entities carrying out mass cremations or issuing related guidelines are wasting money and resources, or encouraging such waste. It may well be due to fuel economy being, quite reasonably, not the only (or even the main) consideration underlying the determination of fuel requirements.

Second, if (as I will assume bar evidence to the contrary) L&P’s fuel to body mass ratio was never replicated in individual or mass cremation of animal carcasses, this would mean nothing unless the method applied by these veterinarians was replicated. For what seems to have accounted for the low fuel consumption was the method applied by L&P, that of burning carcasses on iron carriers over fire in a pit. The method applied by Jansson’s source Volmer was somewhat different from that applied by L&P. While I haven’t yet found Volmer’s article cited by Jansson in the medium I’m essentially dependent on where I live (the internet), Volmer’s method is described in some detail in Zwick’s aforementioned article, as follows:
Volmer schichtet in einer entsprechend grossen Grube Scheitholz kreuz und quer auf, tränkt es mit Petroleum, legt auf dieses Holzlager den Kadaver, mit den geöffneten Bauch nach unten, begiesst die Körperfläche mit Petroleum und umgiebt auch seitlich den Kadaver mit Holzscheiten. Dieses Heizmaterial soll eine sehr intensive Hitze entwickeln und den Kadaver innerhalb 5 Stunden vollständig verkohlen.
Translation:
Volmer piles up split wood in a crisscross manner in a pit of corresponding size, drenches it with petroleum, places the carcass on this bed of wood with the opened belly down, sprinkles the body’s surface with petroleum and also surrounds the carcass with split wood on the site. This heating material is stated to develop a very intensive heat and to completely carbonize the carcass within 5 hours.
Zwick says nothing about fuel consumption in burning according to Volmer’s method while he expressly points out the low fuel consumption in L&P’s experiments. This suggests that the fuel-efficiency of Volmer’s method was not considered noteworthy by Zwick.

The same is suggested by another article included in the same source that features the Zwick article, starting on p. 331 of the PDF file. This article, with the title "Die unschädliche Beseitigung der Tierkadaver und der Fleischkonfiskate", by Dr. F. Puntigam, is of interest in this context insofar as Puntigam compared the (fuel) efficiency of various open air cremation methods as follows (p. 335 of the PDF, pp. 4 and 5 of the article):
Eine weitere Verbrennungsart ist das Verbrennen auf Scheiterhaufen. Das vollständige Veraschen von ungeteilten Grossviehkadavern auf Scheiterhaufen gelingt nur mit Aufwand von viel Brennmateriale und Zeit. Es wird daher mehr oder weniger als Notbehelf zu gelten haben.  
Ganz gute Resultate liefert die Einzelverbrennung in Gruben. In einer ungefähr 2.5 Meter langen und 1.5 Meter tiefen Grube wird zirka 1 Meter langes mit Petroleum getränktes Scheitholz schichtenweise übereinander gelegt und oben auf kommt der mit dem geöffneten Bauche nach unten gerichtete Kadaver zu hegen. Die Zündung erfolgt durch zwei seitlich angebrachte Kanäle. Die Grube hält die Wärme zusammen, wodurch das Brennmaterial besser ausgenützt wird. Ein 300 Kilogramm schwerer Kadaver verbrennt in 5—6 Stunden unter Anwendung von 2.5 Kubikmeter Brennholz und 35 Liter Petroleum. Die Kosten werden demnach ungefähr 32 Kronen betragen.
[…]  
Gleichgünstige Resultate bietet die für sumpfige oder gebirgige Gegenden sowie zur Vermeidung von Feuersgefahr geeignete Meilerverbrennung nach dem flnnländischen Gouvernementstierarzt Fabritius. In einer 1.5 Meter breiten, 2 Meter langen und ebenso tiefen Grube wird Scheitholz bis zum Rande geschichtet. Um und auf den Holzstoss kommt reichlich Stroh, sowie auf letzteres der Kadaver in der vorbeschriebenen Lage. Über den Kadaver kommen gleichfalls Stroh, Reisig oder ähnliches und hierauf Rasen- oder Torfziegel, eventuell Erde als Rauchmantel, so dass nur zwei Öffnungen zum Zünden, beziehungsweise für den Luftzutritt und den Abzug der Verbrennungsgase bleiben. In einigen Stunden ist die Verbrennung beendet und der Rauchmantel tief in die Grube eingesunken. Schliesslich kann das beim Anlegen der Grube ausgehobene Materiale wieder in diese versenkt warden. 
Gute Ergebnisse bei wenig Brennstoffverbrauch liefert die Verbrennung auf Rosten, speziell dann, wenn die Flammen durch die Art der Anlage der Grube, oder durch aufgestellte eiserne Schutzwände oder Erdwälle vor dem Winde geschützt werden.[…] 
Bei dem vorbeschriebenen Verfahren beträgt die Verbrennungsdauer nach den von dem Departementstierarzte Dr. Lothes und dem Polizeitierarzte Dr. Profé —Köln angestellten Versuchen durchschnittlich 68—75 Minuten für 100 Kilogramm Kadaver. An Brennmateriale sind für das angegebene Quantum Kadaver 50 Kilo Holz erforderlich. Wird ohne Windschutz verbrannt, so ist nicht nur der Brennstoffverbrauch grösser, sondern auch die Verbrennungsdauer erhöht sich auf 91—179 Minuten für 100 Kilogramm Kadaver.
Translation:
A further type of burning is the burning on pyres. The complete reduction to ashes of undivided large cattle carcasses on pyres is only possible by employing much burning material and time. Therefore it must be considered more or less a makeshift solution. 
Individual burning in pits yields results that are quite good. In a pit about 2.5 meters long and 1.5 meters deep split wood about 1 meter long drenched in petroleum is placed in layers, and on top of it the carcass is laid with its opened belly down. Ignition is done through two channels opened at the side. The pit holds the heat together, so that the burning material is better used. A carcass weighing 300 kilograms burns within 5-6 hours using 2.5 cubic meters of firing wood and 35 liters of petroleum. The costs are thus about 32 Crowns. 
[…]  
Equally advantageous results are achieved by kiln burning according to Finnish governorate veterinarian Fabritius, which is suited for swampy or mountainous areas and avoidance of fire hazards. In a pit 1.5 meters wide, 2 meters long and equally deep split wood is piled up to the rim. Around and above the wood pile much straw is placed, and on the straw the carcass is laid in the position described above. Above the corpse straw, brushwood and similar material is placed, and above this comes sod or turf, eventually soil, as a smoke sheathing, so that there are only two openings for ignition and for entry of air and release of gasses produced by the burning. In a few hours the burning is concluded and the smoke sheathing has sunk deeply into the pit. Finally the material taken out of the pit when digging the same can be returned to the pit. 
Good results with little fuel expenditure are achieved by burning on grates, especially when the flames are protected against wind by the way the pit is made or by iron protection walls or mounds of soil.[…]
With the procedure described above the duration of burning, according to experiments performed by department veterinarian Dr. Lothes and police veterinarian Dr. Profé — Cologne, is 68-75 minutes on average for 100 kilograms of carcass. The burning material required for the stated amount of carcass is 50 kg of wood. If the burning is carried out without wind protection, not only is the fuel expenditure higher, but the duration of the burning is increased to 91—179 minutes for 100 kilograms of carcass.
(Emphases added.)

In German there is a distinction between "ganz gut" (meaning "quite good" or "pretty good") and "gut" (meaning "good"), the former being less favorable than the latter. The pit burning methods described by Puntigam, while faster and less fuel-intensive then simply placing a carcass on top of a pile of wood in the open, were "quite good" in his opinion, and at least one of them was comparatively fuel intensive: assuming, as I did in the blog Belzec Mass Graves and Archaeology: My Response to Carlo Mattogno (4,2), a weight of 387 kg for 1 cubic meter of (dry) wood, the wood consumption was 2.5 x 387 = 967,5 kg of wood to burn a carcass weighing 300 kg, i.e. the fuel to body mass ratio was about 3.23 kg of wood per kg of carcass. Additionally, the result’s being referred to as only "quite good" suggests that combustion was not as complete as what Puntigam would consider a "good" result. What a "good" result would be for Puntigam he doesn’t tell, but the reference in the first paragraph to a "complete reduction to ashes" suggest that this may have been his benchmark.

Now, L&P’s method of burning carcasses on a grate over a pit was considered by Puntigam to yield "good" results, and that moreover with "little fuel expenditure". This statement of Puntigam’s suggests that L&P’s method of burning on a grate was considered better than the pit-burning methods described before not only as concerns fuel expenditure, which was clearly much lower, but also as concerns the thoroughness of combustion.

Jansson:
Above all, one might ask why anyone is entitled to assume that the unreplicated results of these impractical procedures could be scaled up to a project that aimed to incinerate thousands of carcasses on a single pyre.
Actually the question is another. The question is why someone who (like me) follows the evidence where it leads, instead of running amok against evidence inconvenient to his articles of faith (like Jansson), should be required to provide anything more than a reasonable assumption based on literature about a procedure that was a) laborious but functional, rather than impractical as Jansson falsely claims (see above), and b) quite similar to the procedure applied at the AR camps and at Dresden, the only difference being that L&P cremated carcasses individually whereas at the AR camps and at Dresden corpses were cremated en masse. Jansson "could be scaled up" - argument is a false dilemma, insofar as there is no reason why mass cremation should be more fuel-intensive, on per-mass-unit basis, than individual cremation. Quite the contrary, a source pointed out by Jansson himself (again, see above) states that the amount of wood per kg of carcass can be reduced by one-third in multiple vs. individual cremation of carcasses.

Jansson:
While all of the above considerations are more than sufficient to show that Muehlenkamp’s reasoning is poorly justified, they will inevitably be met by Muehlenkamp’s trademark practice of ignoring all the evidence telling against his thesis while insisting that the burden of proof is on his opponents to prove that his speculations are impossible.
The accusation that I’m in the habit of "ignoring all the evidence telling against" my "thesis" is another showpiece of mendacious Janssonian self-projection (or self-projecting Janssonian mendacity, if you prefer), unless of course one is to assume that Jansson cannot tell the difference between providing a reasonable explanation why one considers "evidence" to be inconclusive or irrelevant (which is my practice) and simply glossing over evidence that one has no arguments against (which is what Jansson has abundantly done throughout our discussions).

As to burden of proof, Jansson doesn’t have the burden of proving that my "speculations" (read: my usually reasonable assumptions, estimates or guesstimates) are impossible. He has the burden of proving that events proven beyond a reasonable doubt by a convergence of all known evidence, which he refuses to accept as fact for ideological reasons, could not have occurred because, as he claims, their occurrence was physically, technically or logistically impossible.

It’s not me who has to prove that what becomes apparent from all known evidence is possible, but it is Jansson who has to prove what becomes apparent from all known evidence is impossible. It may be as hard for Jansson to accept this burden of proof as it is for him to accept facts incompatible with his preconceived notions and ideological beliefs, but I still have to see him come up with an argument on why the burden of proving (and not merely claiming) impossibility should not be on him. Things might be different if impossibility were self-evident to a reasonable person after considering the sum of available evidence about the fate of those deported to the AR camps, but that is not the case.

That’s all as concerns Jansson’s preliminary considerations. The next blog will address Jansson’s arguments regarding what he calls the "vital question". Stay tuned.

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