Saturday, March 28, 2015

Neils Harrit Loses, Again

The Truther sites have been pretty quiet about it, I have only found a mention on a couple of Danish news sites, but it appears that Harrit lost his libel appeal against a journalist who called his beliefs the Danish equivalent of a crackpot. So go forward with the knowledge that from now on you may wander the small Scandinavian nation freely calling 9/11 conspiracy theories crackpot with impunity.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Niels Harrit in Court

The Truthers are all excited over Niels Harrit suing a Danish journalist for libel. By their accounts it is going, swimmingly.

Harrit referred to the historical court case against Galileo Galilei in 1633, where the accused was brought in front of the inquisition of the Roman Catholic Church and tortured until he renounced his belief that the earth rotated around the sun and acknowledged that the earth was the center of the universe.
When he concluded his procedure, there was no doubt that Dr. Harrit had made an impact upon the High Court. The three judges looked as if they approved the legal points he made, and both Villemoes and his lawyer appeared a bit shaken.
Who knows who will actually win, European libel laws are decidedly less liberal than in the US, but perhaps Harrit should note that unlike Galileo, he is not the defendant, he is the one doing the suing. Regardless a Danish skeptic had a rather less favorable report of the trial.
Harrit pointed to a Danish law against libel, §2672, and Article 10 in the European Human Rights Convention3 (on freedom of expression). He admitted to not being an expert on law, but made the argument that Villemoes had to produce evidence that he, Harrit, was a crackpot. Harrit proved himself right, when it came to him not having expertise in law:
Despite the judges being very lenient with him, he had to be schooled by the head judge on not to make his closing argument during his questioning of the witnesses. Later, she had to tell him not to badger the defendant, Søren Villemoes, while the latter was on the stand, being questioned by Harrit. Harrit would not be allowed to ask insinuating questions. 
Among other things, Harrit claimed that there had been no judicial or police investigation of the terror attacks. He did not mention the trial of Zacharias Moussaoui who was sentenced to life in prison for his role in the attacks, a trial that Harrit is fully aware of