The Continuing Idiocy of Kevin Barrett
Looks like he's digging in about his Holocaust Denial; he's having a prominent Holocaust Denier on his show this Saturday, and he's published an open letter to Andrea (sic) Merkel on his blog admitting his own "skepticism" that six million Jews died in the concentration camps.
But seriously, Ms. Merkel, you may ask why I side with Hilberg's estimate of 5.1 [million] Holocaust deaths rather than the well-known figure of six million. My answer is that Thomas Dalton, in his book Debating the Holocaust, presents evidence that the figure of six million European Jewish victims threatened with destruction repeatedly occurs long before anyone could possibly have known the real figure. For example, the February 23rd, 1938 New York Times describes six million European Jews as "slowly dying of starvation, all hope gone." Yet at that time the Holocaust, much less its precise body count, was still several years away. A few decades earlier, the May 7, 1920 New York Times cited "Jewish war sufferers in Central and Eastern Europe, where six millions face horrifying conditions of famine, disease and death..."
Barrett goes on to mention the Auschwitz Gambit, which has been debunked for years. Oddly after all this nuttiness, Barrett arrives at a number for the Holocaust:
After reading three books on the issue--Lipstadt's Denying the Holocaust, Shermer's Denying History, and Dalton's Debating the Holocaust--I am now prepared to state that I find pre-eminent Holocaust scholar Raul Hilberg's estimate of 5.1 million Jewish Holocaust victims a more reasonable estimate.
Oddly, because that's not an unreasonable number. Nobody, despite the claims of Holocaust Deniers, says that six million is set in stone. Indeed, in the famed lawsuit between David Irving and Deborah Lipstadt, the definition of the Holocaust was:
Evans argued that the term is generally understood to denote "the attempt by Nazi Germany, led by Hitler, to exterminate the Jewish population in Europe, which attempt succeeded to the extent of murdering between 5 and 6 million Jews in a variety of ways, including mass gassings in camps built for the purpose".
(Bolding added for emphasis).
I'm not sure where Barrett is going with his claims that the NY Times published stories about 6 million Jews dying much earlier than that figure could have been known or even contemplated; I suspect his argument amounts to "they kept claiming 6 million Jews perished after WWI and eventually the world accepted it about WWII." It's certainly a stupid argument, kind of like arguing that since Wonder Woman crashed her plane into the World Trade Center in a mid-1980s comic book, nobody could later have crashed a plane into the Twin Towers.
Incidentally, while we're on the subject of Holocaust Denying, 9-11 kooks, Bishop Williamson was fined 10,000 euros for his Holocaust Denial.
Hat Tip: JREF Forum Member Nick Terry. Good find!