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CBC.ca | 12Jul2017 | Alexandra Sienkiewicz, [2], [3], [4], [5]

Memorial for lawyer who represented holocaust deniers creates controversy for Toronto Public Library

Barbara Kulaszka [1953.00.00 -- 2017.06.15], a librarian turned lawyer, acted as counsel for Ernst Zundel, among others

Despite attempts by members of the public to have a memorial for a controversial lawyer shut down, the event went ahead at a Toronto public library on Wednesday night with extra security.

Who the woman was, who she represented during her career and who was scheduled to speak at the event created heat for the library, which allowed her supporters to book space and hold the nearly two-hour evening event at an Etobicoke branch.

Barbara Kulaszka, a librarian turned lawyer, according to the memorial page, acted as counsel for Holocaust-denier Ernst Zundel and Marc Lemire, leader of the Heritage Front -- a white supremacist group.

She died in her hometown of Brighton, Ont., about 150 kilometres east of Toronto in June [15June2017?].

The Toronto Public Library, for its part, says it will review its booking policy in the wake of the controversy over the memorial, which was held at Richview Public Library, 1806 Islington Ave., north of Eglinton Avenue West.

Library staff were in the room during the event. 

Ana-Maria Critchley, spokesperson for the library, said after the memorial that the library will review the incident, look at its policy and debrief staff about the event.

"Anytime there are so many people who express concerns and contact us with their comments, that will definitely prompt us to have a conversation and evaluate the situation and how events unfolded," she said.

"It's that delicate balancing act between intellectual freedom and continuing to offer a welcoming environment."

Toronto police officers were on hand to keep the peace, according to spokesperson Const. Victor Kwong.

It was the use of public space, primarily, that shocked people, including Mayor John Tory, Coun. James Pasternak and Coun. John Campbell.

"It is truly shocking that individuals who spread hatred, deny the Holocaust and have ties to neo-Nazi groups are being provided a permit by the Toronto Public Library to host an event inside a public building," Pasternak said. "Those tied to hate and bigotry have no place in our libraries."

Mayor John Tory expressed deep concern and asked the library to consider cancelling the event. Tory was informed that the library received legal advice that it could not reject the room booking request. He said he will ask the library board to review its room rental policies in the wake of what happened.

Campbell, who represents Ward 4, Etobicoke Centre, said it was a bad decision by the library to welcome the group because of its past record of hate speech. He said the memorial should have been held at a church.

"I don't think the library should be welcoming unsavoury types into our premises. My view is that, the head librarian should have said, 'No, we're going to put a stop and we're not going to allow them here.'"

He said it's a "bit of stain" on the library and on Toronto for allowing the event to happen in a public space.

 'We paid for the library'

Lemire and Paul Fromm, among others, were scheduled to speak. Fromm, the memorial's organizer, is the founder of the Canadian Association for Free Expression and a self-described white nationalist -- someone who has no place being hosted in a public library, critics said.

"The fact that a publicly funded facility would permit their premises to be used for a gathering of racists boggles the mind," wrote Bernie Farber, former CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress.

Fromm told CBC Toronto that he "and all the attendees are taxpayers, many in the city of Toronto. We paid for the library. It is public and should be open to our use.

"The library isn't hosting anything. It is providing rental meeting spaces," he said, adding that the $10 admission fee was going to help with the costs of renting the venue.

He added the controversy was "stirred up by the enemies of free speech" and that it's ironic that Kulaszka's memorial has become "a free speech battle for this brave lady who was a female pioneer in the free speech battle."

Warren Kinsella, a Toronto-based political consultant and commentator who is a staunch opponent of Fromm's, disagreed.

"Public services are not supposed to be used to promote discrimination.The library in Etobicoke is doing that," he said.

"They're providing a platform for neo-nazis and white supremacists to have a platform and that's outrageous."

Kinsella said he is concerned the event could start a trend. He said there could be "many more such groups," which will "cause division, hurt feelings and intimidate lots of people."

Concerns taken seriously

The outcry against the library was swift -- a Richview staff member said "we've been inundated with calls over the last 48 hours" when reached by phone.

In a statement, the library said it took the concerns raised very seriously.

"We do not tolerate hate speech. However, we cannot deny bookings from the community that are in accordance with the law and the library's policy," the statement reads.

It goes on to say the memorial was an external third-party room booking and was not endorsed or sponsored by the library, however, "should the group act in a manner that is not consistent with the law or our rules of conduct, please be assured that we will take immediate action."

Extra security added to event

Critchley said it was not aware of the background of the people scheduled to speak at the time of the booking, which was made about three weeks ago.

"We have added extra security and are working with the police to ensure safety and order," Critchley said.

According to the library's website, a staff member will "ask you some questions to make sure the facilities are appropriate for your use," before booking.

Not practising at time of death

Kulaszka was listed with the Law Society of Upper Canada at the time of her death, but she was not practising.

"In my view, Barbara Kulaszka was, like her late predecessor and colleague Doug Christie, a fellow traveller of those neo-Nazis, Holocaust deniers and hatemongers for whom she acted as legal counsel," Bernie Farber added.

Doug Christie, who died in 2013, was a B.C. lawyer whose client list included Fromm, former Nazi prison guard Michael Seifert and Zundel, who maintains the Holocaust never occurred.

Kulaszka was also the editor of Did Six Million Really Die? -- a book about the "false news trial" of Zundel.

Richard Warman, a human rights lawyer who has successfully prosecuted hate speech cases at the Human Rights Tribunal on several occasions, said "Fromm has a decades long association with the neo-Nazi movement in Canada and has twice been barred from holding events on Parliament Hill."

He ended by saying "if that's not good enough for the Toronto public library to say, 'No, thanks,' then what could be?"

With files from Lisa Xing

Toronto Star | 12Jul2017 | Ainslie Cruikshank

Memorial goes ahead at Toronto library for lawyer who represented far-right extremists

Local politicians, human rights advocates urged library to cancel event honouring Barbara Kulaszka.

A memorial for a lawyer who counted accused neo-Nazis and white nationalists among her clients went ahead at a Toronto Public Library branch Wednesday evening, despite calls from local politicians and human rights advocates for the library to cancel the event.

“It certainly will discredit the Toronto library system,” said Bernie Farber, former CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress, who said he was “stunned” that the library agreed to rent space at its Richview branch in Etobicoke for a memorial in honour of Barbara Kulaszka.

“Barbara Kulaszka was a fellow traveller in hate groups in this country. She provided legal counsel to neo-Nazis, racists and bigots, and in fact ensured, through some of the work that she did, that hate laws and neo-Nazis and even Nazi war criminals would not be prosecuted in this country.

“Her legacy, if she has one, is one of increasing and permitting hatred in Canada.”

Kulaszka represented some of Canada’s most famous far-right extremists, including German-born Holocaust denier Ernst Zundel, who was deported back to his home country in 2005 after a Canadian judge deemed him a security threat. Zundel was later sentenced to five years in German prison in 2007.

The lawyer also worked for Paul Fromm, a self-proclaimed white nationalist, who organized the event Wednesday night. She represented Marc Lemire, who used to be part of the Canadian neo-Nazi group Heritage Front.

Kulaszka, 64, died from lung cancer on June 15, according to the Canadian Association for Free Expression website which posted about the event.

A library spokesperson said they’ve heard the concerns about Wednesday’s event “loud and clear,” and was taking them very seriously.

But the library couldn’t deny the booking because it didn’t contravene any laws, said Ana-Maria Critchley, the Toronto Public Library’s manager of stakeholder relations.

Library staff were in the room monitoring the event for any racism or discrimination and ready to intervene, she said.

Fromm, a spokesperson for the Canadian Association for Free Expression, said he doesn’t understand the controversy and called those who pushed for its cancellation, free speech opponents.

“I think this is really, really sad that some people would take it upon themselves to shut down a meeting, a memorial,” he said.

Fromm described as Kulaszka as “a very quiet, dedicated woman.”

While media were not allowed inside the event, one attendee said there were about 25 people inside the room.

Max French, who attended the event and said he had helped on Zundel’s Holocaust denial cases, said “it was a fitting tribute to a great woman.”

“There was no Holocaust denial going on in there, and if there was, what of it?,” he said.

No one in the room had ties to neo-Nazi groups, French added. But one man who attended was wearing a Blood and Honour T-shirt, a neo-Nazi music promotion group.

Farber said one silver lining of the whole thing has been the united response from multicultural organizations across the city calling for the event to be cancelled and expressing their concerns.

Among the emails complaining about the event was one from 89-year-old Nathan Leipciger, a survivor of Auschwitz and other Nazi concentration camps.

“My entire family was murdered by Nazi regime and I was outraged when I learned that a number of white nationalist leaders, including Paul Fromm and Marc Lemire, have rented space at a Toronto Public Library in Etobicoke . . . despite their long record of promoting bigotry and their disturbing ties to the neo-Nazi movement,” he wrote in an email, an excerpt of which was provided to the Star by the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs.

Mayor John Tory, who said he was “deeply concerned” about the event, said his office will ask the library to review its room-booking policies going forward.

While the mayor had asked the library to consider cancelling the event, he was told they’d received legal advice that they couldn’t deny the booking.

Councillor James Pasternak (Ward 10 York Centre), had also called on the library to cancel the booking.

“It is truly shocking that individuals who spread hatred, deny the Holocaust and have ties to neo-Nazi groups are being provided a permit by the Toronto Public Library to host an event inside a public building,” he said.

Critchley, who noted the library only realized who had booked the event Tuesday, said they are going to have a full discussion going forward.

With files from Emma McIntosh and Jennifer Pagliaro

National Post | 12Jul2017 | Joseph Brean

Far-right extremists converge at memorial for Toronto lawyer

One of the attendees, who refused to give her name, said it was ‘very, very sad’ that the library placed ‘a spy’ in the memorial. ‘What kind of country are we living in?’

Despite a co-ordinated effort by anti-racist activists to stop it, the Toronto Public Library is standing by its decision to rent out space for a memorial Wednesday night for Barbara Kulaszka, a controversial lawyer who defended some of Canada’s most notorious accused hatemongers, propagandists, and anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists.

Kulaszka, who died last month [15Jun2017?] aged 64 but whose death was not publicized until Tuesday, is famous among the Canadian far right for winning acquittals under the law for people charged with hate crimes, or even undoing the laws used to charge them.

She was largely responsible, for example, for the fact that Canada has no law against false news and no human-rights ban on internet hate speech, and for the fact that no Nazi has been convicted in Canada of war crimes.

Her licensing information with the Law Society of Upper Canada indicated she was not practising law in Ontario at the time of her death. A notice from Henry Makow, a prominent anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist in Winnipeg, said the cause was lung cancer, and that her funeral has already taken place, last month. She lived in Brighton, Ont.

A staff member at Richview Library in Toronto confirmed a third party rented space there for a memorial for Kulaszka Wednesday. (Kulaszka studied to be a librarian before going into law.)

Paul Fromm, a former Kulaszka client who has become a sort of leader of Canada’s racist right, was expected to speak at the memorial, along with Marc Lemire, who was found to have violated Canada’s old law against internet hate speech in the last case before its repeal, and others dating back to Kulaszka’s legal work for Holocaust denial propagandist Ernst Zundel.

“She literally gave her life for her passionate belief in freedom of speech,” Fromm said.

Bernie Farber, executive director of the Mosaic Institute and a former head of the Canadian Jewish Congress, said there is a co-ordinated push of advocacy groups to prevent this memorial from taking place in a public library, calling it the first comparable event since the late 1980s in the age of the neo-Nazi Heritage Front. So far, the push has failed.

Ana-Maria Critchley, manager of stakeholder relations for the Toronto Public Library, said that, as with any third-party rental, the library does not endorse the event. She said groups who rent space must agree to comply with all laws and regulations.

The Toronto Public Library dispatched two extra security guards to Richview Library ahead of the memorial on Wednesday. “Given all the concerns that were raised today,” Critchley said, “we wanted to take extra precaution.” But as the memorial began in a second-floor room around 6:15 p.m., there were only news crews milling outside the library, perplexing the parents and children who walked past.

Before the memorial started, a Library staff member reiterated terms of use for the meeting room to everyone present, as well as the library’s code of conduct and the Canadian Human Rights Act. The staff member stayed in the room to monitor the memorial, said Linda Hazzan, the library’s director of communications.

One of the attendees, who refused to give her name, said it was “very, very sad” that the library placed “a spy” in the memorial.

“What kind of country are we living in?” she said.

As the meeting went on inside, three people dressed in black shirts with dark masks partially covering their faces stood staring at the entrance to the library. Asked if they were attendees to the memorial or protesters, they would only say, “We don’t talk to media.”

Two police cruisers arrived on scene around 7 p.m., and two uniformed officers walked into the library and had a closed-door meeting with staff. Critchley said she notified police about the three people in masks on the property because she “thought they looked kind of suspicious.” As the officers left the library, one said they were there for a “routine call for service.” The masked group lingered at a picnic table at an adjacent park, with police observing them from a cruiser nearby. The group eventually left, without interacting with anyone on scene.

A Library staff member reiterated terms of use for the meeting room to all gathered for the memorial, as well as the library’s code of conduct and the Canadian Human Rights Act. The staff member stayed in the room to monitor the memorial, said Linda Hazzan, the library’s director of communications.

Richard Warman, the Ottawa human rights lawyer who pursued nearly every hate speech case under the Canadian Human Rights Act, including Lemire’s, and who was in recent years Kulaszka’s greatest adversary, noted that Fromm has been barred from Parliament and Lemire is the last known leader of the Heritage Front.

“If that’s not good enough for the Toronto Public Library to say ‘No thanks’ then what could be?” he said.

On Wednesday afternoon, Toronto mayor John Tory released a statement expressing concern about the memorial.

“Following a request I made to consider the cancellation of this event, I was informed that the library has received legal advice that it cannot reject this room booking request,” Tory’s statement said. “My office will be asking the library board to review its room rental policies in the wake of this event.”

It is a fittingly controversial end to a professional life working in the highest courts on behalf of people from the fringes of civil society.

After the 2013 death of Douglas Christie, the so-called Battling Barrister, Kulaszka took over his mantle as the go-to lawyer for Canada’s far right. But she had always been his equal. For example, when the Nazi rocket engineer Arthur Rudolph was seeking to re-enter Canada in 1990, it was Kulaszka he hired for the high profile immigration case, though she lost it.

That was not the norm. She acted as co-counsel with Christie for Imre Finta, a Canadian citizen who ran a restaurant in Toronto and in 1987 became the first person prosecuted for war crimes in Canada. Years earlier, he had commanded a Hungarian military unit that rounded up Jews and deported them to Nazi death camps. The pair won him a jury acquittal that stood up through appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada, and led to a wholesale change in how Canada deals with war criminals -- deporting, rather than charging.

In the early 1990s, Kulaszka and Christie also represented Ernst Zundel, a publisher of Holocaust denial literature, in a series of cases that transfixed Canada. His prosecution coincided with growing street-level violence between racists and anti-fascists, and ultimately led to the collapse of the crime of “false news.”

When Christie died, Kulaszka recalled how bothered he was by the widespread assumption that he made common cause with his clients, a suspicion that was also frequently directed at her.

“I think the criticisms and attacks made on him over the years hurt him deeply,” she told the National Post at the time. But he kept on defending his clients according to the principles of law, she said, “which in the end protect all of us from the power of the state. That type of courage is very rare.”

With Kulaszka, the question was more clear. She never had Christie’s knack for grandstanding or oratory. He was politically minded, even once seeking to run for office on a western separatist ticket. Kulaszka was more private, but she engaged with the substantive questions about Holocaust revisionism far more than he ever did. In her many cases that involved freedom of speech, she sometimes defended the speech as much as the freedom.

For example, she edited Did Six Million Really Die?, a report on the Zundel prosecution that takes its title from an earlier notorious work of Holocaust denial, spread by Zundel. She claimed the book “ensures that both sides of this ethnic dispute are at least available to the general reader.”

She also wrote an essay in defence of Holocaust revisionism, and described Zundel’s departure from Canada to the U.S. as part of a “brain drain.”

Lemire, the former Heritage Front leader and webmaster of freedomsite.org, whom Kulaszka represented through to a sort of qualified victory that inspired the legislative repeal of the hate speech section of the Canadian Human Rights Act, said Kulaszka was “a fantastic lawyer whose dedication to freedom of speech‎ is unsurpassed.”

“Her work caused an earthquake to the censorship provisions of Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act, which is now into the dustbin of history,” he said. “The law, which was abused badly, is now so tarnished that even the Liberal government hasn’t dared to resurrect it … That is quite an accomplishment for any lawyer.”

Farber, who had much experience with Kulaszka’s clients, countered that as a lawyer she had many successes “to the detriment of Canadian society.” 

“Any contact I had with her was always negative. There was no humour in it. There was nothing. It was clear to me that she embraced the philosophy of the people she represented, and she did this for a very long time,” he said.

-- With files from Jake Edmiston

Institute for Historical Review | xxDxx1992 | Barbara Kulaszka [1953.00.00 -- 2017.06.15]

What is 'Holocaust Denial'?

In recent years considerable attention has been devoted to the supposed danger of "Holocaust denial." Politicians, newspapers and television warn about the growing influence of those who reject the Holocaust story that some six million European Jews were systematically exterminated during the Second World War, most of them in gas chambers.

In several countries, including Israel, France, Germany and Austria, "Holocaust denial" is against the law, and "deniers" have been punished with stiff fines and prison sentences. Some Jewish community leaders have called for similar measures in North America. In Canada, David Matas, Senior Counsel for the "League for Human Rights" of the Zionist B'nai B'rith organization, says: [1]

"The Holocaust was the murder of six million Jews, including two million children. Holocaust denial is a second murder of those same six million. First their lives were extinguished; then their deaths. A person who denies the Holocaust becomes part of the crime of the Holocaust itself."

Often overlooked in this controversy is the crucial question: Just what constitutes "Holocaust denial"?

Six Million?

Should someone be considered a "Holocaust denier" because he does not believe - as Matas and many others insist - that six million Jews were killed during World War II? This figure was cited by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg in 1945-1946. It found that "the policy pursued [by the German government] resulted in the killing of six million Jews, of which four million were killed in the extermination institutions." [2]

Yet if that is so, then several of the most prominent Holocaust historians could be regarded as "deniers." Professor Raul Hilberg, author of the standard reference work, The Destruction of the European Jews, does not accept that six million Jews died. He puts the total of deaths (from all causes) at 5.1 million. Gerald Reitlinger, author of The Final Solution, likewise did not accept the six million figure. He estimated the figure of Jewish wartime dead might be as high as 4.6 million, but admitted that this was conjectural due to a lack of reliable information.

Human Soap?

Is someone a "Holocaust denier" if he says that the Nazis did not make soap from the corpses of murdered Jews? After considering the evidence - including an actual bar of soap supplied by the Soviets - the Nuremberg Tribunal declared in its Judgment that "in some instances attempts were made to utilize the fat from the bodies of the victims in the commercial manufacture of soap." [3]

In 1990, though, Israel's official Yad Vashem Holocaust center "rewrote history" by admitting that the soap story was not true. "Historians have concluded that soap was not made from human fat. When so many people deny the Holocaust ever happened, why give them something to use against the truth?," said Yad Vashem official Shmuel Krakowski. [4]

Wannsee Conference?

Is someone a "Holocaust denier" if he does not accept that the January 1942 "Wannsee conference" of German bureaucrats was held to set or coordinate a program of systematic mass murder of Europe's Jews? If so, Israeli Holocaust historian Yehuda Bauer must be wrong -- and a "Holocaust denier" -- because he declared: "The public still repeats, time after time, the silly story that at Wannsee the extermination of the Jews was arrived at." In Bauer's opinion, Wannsee was a meeting but "hardly a conference" and "little of what was said there was executed in detail." [5]

Extermination Policy?

Is someone a "Holocaust denier" if he says that there was no order by Hitler to exterminate Europe's Jews? There was a time when the answer would have been yes. Holocaust historian Raul Hilberg, for example, wrote in the 1961 edition of his study, The Destruction of the European Jews, that there were two Hitler orders for the destruction of Europe's Jews: the first given in the spring of 1941, and the second shortly thereafter. But Hilberg removed mention of any such order from the revised, three-volume edition of his book published in 1985. [6] As Holocaust historian Christopher Browning has noted: [7]

"In the new edition, all references in the text to a Hitler decision or Hitler order for the 'Final Solution' have been systematically excised. Buried at the bottom of a single footnote stands the solitary reference: 'Chronology and circumstances point to a Hitler decision before the summer ended.' In the new edition, decisions were not made and orders were not given."

A lack of hard evidence for an extermination order by Hitler has contributed to a controversy that divides Holocaust historians into "intentionalists" and "functionalists." The former contend that there was a premeditated extermination policy ordered by Hitler, while the latter hold that Germany's wartime "final solution" Jewish policy evolved at lower levels in response to circumstances. But the crucial point here is this: notwithstanding the capture of literally tons of German documents after the war, no one can point to documentary evidence of a wartime extermination order, plan or program. This was admitted by Professor Hilberg during his testimony in the 1985 trial in Toronto of German-Canadian publisher Ernst Zündel. [8]


So just what constitutes "Holocaust denial"? Surely a claim that most Auschwitz inmates died from disease and not systematic extermination in gas chambers would be "denial." But perhaps not. Jewish historian Arno J. Mayer, a Princeton University professor, wrote in his 1988 study Why Did the Heavens Not Darken?: The 'Final Solution' in History: "...From 1942 to 1945, certainly at Auschwitz , but probably overall, more Jews were killed by so-called 'natural' causes than by 'unnatural' ones." [9]

Even estimates of the number of people who died at Auschwitz - allegedly the main extermination center - are no longer clear cut. At the postwar Nuremberg Tribunal, the Allies charged that the Germans exterminated four million people at Auschwitz. [10] Until 1990, a memorial plaque at Auschwitz read: "Four Million People Suffered and Died Here at the Hands of the Nazi Murderers Between the Years 1940 and 1945." [11]

Is it "Holocaust denial" to dispute these four million deaths? Not today. In July 1990, the Polish government's Auschwitz State Museum, along with Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust center, conceded that the four million figure was a gross exaggeration, and references to it were accordingly removed from the Auschwitz monument. Israeli and Polish officials announced a tentative revised toll of 1.1 million Auschwitz dead. [12] In 1993, French Holocaust researcher Jean-Claude Pressac, in a much-discussed book about Auschwitz, estimated that altogether about 775,000 died there during the war years. [13]

Professor Mayer acknowledges that the question of how many really died in Auschwitz remains open. In Why Did the Heavens Not Darken? he wrote: [14}

"... Many questions remain open ... All in all, how many bodies were cremated in Auschwitz? How many died there all told? What was the national, religious, and ethnic breakdown in this commonwealth of victims? How many of them were condemned to die a 'natural' death and how many were deliberately slaughtered? And what was the proportion of Jews among those murdered in cold blood among these gassed? We have simply no answers to these questions at this time."

Gas Chambers

What about denying the existence of extermination "gas chambers"? Here too, Mayer makes a startling statement: "Sources for the study of the gas chambers are at once rare and unreliable." While Mayer believes that such chambers did exist at Auschwitz, he points out that "most of what is known is based on the depositions of Nazi officials and executioners at postwar trials and on the memory of survivors and bystanders. This testimony must be screened carefully, since it can be influenced by subjective factors of great complexity." [15}

Höss Testimony

One example of this might be the testimony of Rudolf Höss, an SS officer who served as commandant of Auschwitz. In its Judgment, the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal quoted at length from his testimony to support its findings of extermination. [16]

It is now well established that Höss' crucial testimony, as well as his so-called "confession" - which was also cited by the Nuremberg Tribunal - are not only false, but were obtained by beating the former commandant nearly to death. [17] Höss' wife and children were also threatened with death and deportation to Siberia. In his statement - which would not be admissible today in any United States court of law - Höss claimed the existence of an extermination camp called "Wolzek." In fact, no such camp ever existed. He further claimed that during the time that he was commandant of Auschwitz, two and a half million people were exterminated there, and that a further half million died of disease. [18] Today no reputable historian upholds these figures. Höss was obviously willing to say anything, sign anything and do anything to stop the torture, and to try to save himself and his family.

Forensic Investigations

In his 1988 book, Professor Mayer calls for "excavations at the killing sites and in their immediate environs" to determine more about the gas chambers. In fact, such forensic studies have been made. The first was conducted in 1988 by American execution equipment consultant, Fred A. Leuchter, Jr. He carried out an on-site forensic examination of the alleged gas chambers at Auschwitz, Birkenau and Majdanek to determine if they could have been used to kill people as claimed. After a careful study of the alleged killing facilities, Leuchter concluded that the sites were not used, and could not have been used, as homicidal gas chambers. Furthermore, an analysis of samples taken by Leuchter from the walls and floors of the alleged gas chambers showed either no or minuscule traces of cyanide compound, from the active ingredient of Zyklon B, the pesticide allegedly used to murder Jews at Auschwitz. [19]

A confidential forensic examination (and subsequent report) commissioned by the Auschwitz State Museum and conducted by Institute of Forensic Research in Krakow has confirmed Leuchter's finding that minimal or no traces of cyanide compound can be found in the sites alleged to have been gas chambers. [20]

The significance of this is evident when the results of the forensic examination of the alleged homicidal gas chambers are compared with the results of the examination of the Auschwitz disinfestation facilities, where Zyklon B was used to delouse mattresses and clothing. Whereas no or only trace amounts of cyanide were found in the alleged homicidal gas chambers, massive traces of cyanide were found in the walls and floor in the camp's disinfestation delousing chambers.

Another forensic study was carried out by German chemist Germar Rudolf. On the basis of his on-site examination and analysis of samples, the certified chemist and doctoral candidate concluded: "For chemical-technical reasons, the claimed mass gassings with hydrocyanic acid in the alleged 'gas chambers' in Auschwitz did not take place ... The supposed facilities for mass killing in Auschwitz and Birkenau were not suitable for this purpose..." [21]

There is also the study of Austrian engineer Walter Lüftl, a respected expert witness in numerous court cases, and former president of Austria's professional association of engineers. In a 1992 report he called the alleged mass extermination of Jews in gas chambers "technically impossible." [22]

Discredited Perspective

So just what constitutes "Holocaust denial"? Those who support criminal persecution of "Holocaust deniers" seem to be still living in the world of 1946 where the Allied officials of the Nuremberg Tribunal have just pronounced their verdict. But the Tribunal's findings can no longer be assumed to be valid. Because it relied so heavily on such untrustworthy evidence as the Höss testimony, some of its most critical findings are now discredited.

For purposes of their own, powerful special interest groups desperately seek to keep substantive discussion of the Holocaust story taboo. One of the ways they do this is by purposely mischaracterizing revisionist scholars as "deniers." But the truth can't be suppressed forever: There is a very real controversy about what actually happened to Europe's Jews during World War II.

Let this issue be settled as all great historical controversies are resolved: through free inquiry and open debate in our journals, newspapers and classrooms.


1. The Globe and Mail (Toronto), Jan. 22, 1992.

2. Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal (IMT "blue series"), Vol. 22, p. 496. ( https://www.loc.gov/rr/frd/Military_Law/pdf/NT_Vol-XXII.pdf )

3. IMT "blue series," Vol. 22, p. 496.

4. “Human Fat Wasn’t Used by Nazis, Israel’s Holocaust Museum Says,” Reuters, The Globe and Mail (Toronto), April 25, 1990, p. A2; See also: M. Weber, “Jewish Soap," The Journal of Historical Review, Summer 1991.
( http://www.ihr.org/leaflets/soap.shtml )

5. “Wannsee’s Importance Rejected,” Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA), The Canadian Jewish News (Toronto), Jan. 30, 1992, p. 8.
( http://www.jta.org/1992/01/23/archive/nazi-scheme-not-born-at-wannsee-israeli-holocaust-scholar-claims )

6. See: Barbara Kulaszka, ed., Did Six Million Really Die: Report of the Evidence in the Canadian 'False News' Trial of Ernst Zündel (Toronto: Samisdat, 1992), pp. 192, 300, 349. ( http://vho.org/aaargh/fran/livres3/KULA.pdf )

7. C. Browning, “The Revised Hilberg,” Simon Wiesenthal Annual, Vol. 3, 1986, p. 294
( http://motlc.wiesenthal.com/site/pp.asp?c=gvKVLcMVIuG&b=395051 ) ;
B. Kulaszka, ed., Did Six Million Really Die (1992), p. 117.

8. B. Kulaszka, ed., Did Six Million Really Die (1992), pp. 24-25.

9. A. Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken?: The 'Final Solution' in History (Pantheon, 1988), p. 365.

10. Nuremberg document 008-USSR, in IMT “blue series,” Vol. 39, pp. 241, 261.
( https://www.loc.gov/rr/frd/Military_Law/pdf/NT_Vol-XXXIX.pdf )

11. B. Kulaszka, ed., Did Six Million Really Die (1992), p. 441.

12. Y. Bauer, "Fighting the Distortions," The Jerusalem Post (Israel), Sept. 22, 1989; "Auschwitz Deaths Reduced to a Million," The Daily Telegraph (London), July 17, 1990; " Poland Reduces Auschwitz Death Toll Estimate to 1 Million," The Washington Times, July 17, 1990.

13. J.-C. Pressac, Les Crémetoires d'Auschwitz: La machinerie du meurtre de masse (Paris: CNRS, 1993), p. 148. See also: R. Faurisson, "Jean-Claude Pressac's New Auschwitz Book," The Journal of Historical Review, Jan.-Feb. 1994, p. 24. ( https://codoh.com/library/document/2489/?lang=en )

14. A. Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken? (1988), p. 366.

15. A. Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken? (1988), pp. 362-363.

16. IMT "blue series," Vol. 1, pp. 251-252; Nuremberg document 3868-PS, in IMT "blue series," Vol. 33, pp. 275-279.

17. Rupert Butler, Legions of Death (England: 1983), pp. 235-237.

18. See: R. Faurisson, "How the British Obtained the Confession of Rudolf Höss," The Journal of Historical Review, Winter 1986-87, pp. 389-403. ( http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v07/v07p389_faurisson.html )

19. See, for example: B. Kulaszka, ed., Did Six Million Really Die (1992), pp. 469-502. See also: M. Weber, "Fred Leuchter: Courageous Defender of Historical Truth," The Journal of Historical Review, Winter 1992-93, pp. 421-428 
( http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v12/v12p421_Weber.html )

20. "An Official Polish Report on the Auschwitz 'Gas Chambers'," The Journal of Historical Review, Summer 1991, pp. 207-216. ( http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v11/v11p207_staff.html )

21. G. Rudolf, Gutachten über die Bildung und Nachweisbarkeit von Cyanidverbindungen in den 'Gaskammern’ von Auschwitz (London: 1993) ( http://www.vho.org/D/rga/ ); The Rudolf Report (in English)
( http://www.vho.org/GB/Books/trr/ )

22. "The 'Lüftl Report'," The Journal of Historical Review, Winter 1992-93. ( http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v12/v12p391_luftl.html )

This essay is adapted from a text first published in 1992 by the Canadian Free Speech League.

About the Author

Barbara Kulaszka is a Canadian lawyer who practices law in Brighton, Ontario. She is best known for her work in free speech cases. During the 1988 "Holocaust trial" in Toronto, she served as co-counsel (with Doug Christie) for defendant Ernst Zundel. In 1999 she was awarded the "George Orwell Award" by the Canadian Free Speech League.

#2014 01/2007 (Revised)

CHRT/CHRC v. Marc Lemire 06Dec2005; Barbara Kulaszka