Harper's Magazine | Feb. 17, 2000 | Eugene Harasymiw
Criticism of John MacArthur article

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February 17, 2000     Faxed to: (212) 228-5889

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Attention: John R. MacArthur

Dear Sir:

Earlier this month, many of our members shared the profound misfortune of reading your article "He haunts us still" (Toronto Globe and Mail, Feb. 05, 2000). We have also noted some of the reaction here in Canada to your views. A sample of that reaction includes:

a) Kevin Michael Grace in National Report (February, 2000) runs through the toll of Communist victims as detailed by reputable historian Norman Davies. Mr. Grace summarizes Prof. Davies' findings thus:

It is true that, overall, Hitler murdered only his perceived enemies, while Stalin rejoiced in the murder of his closest allies. But Stalin, like Hitler, nursed a special hatred of ethnic minorities, Ukrainians in particular. Prof. Davies estimates that during the terror famine of 1932-1933, Stalin succeeded -- by deliberate starvation, mass shootings and deportations -- to kill between six and seven million of them. Is this systematic enough for you, Mr. MacArthur?

b) George Jonas (Southam Press, Feb. 11, 2000), a Jewish survivor of Auschwitz, directly addressing the fatuous arguments presented in your article, writes:

I've news for MacArthur. I'm a Jew and a Holocaust survivor, but have no trouble equating the murders committed by Stalin & Co. with the murders committed by Hitler & Co. To begin with, Stalin tried to murder his enemies -- say, "class aliens" -- as systematically as Hitler. What he murdered randomly was his friends, i.e. fellow Communists.

To consider Stalin, along with many other Communist leaders, just as bad as Hitler doesn't remotely lead to the conclusion that "then Hitler wasn't quite so awful." For a non-sequitur, MacArthur's suggestion deserves the blue ribbon.

No, it doesn't take a Holocaust denier to think that Stalin was as bad as Hitler. However, it takes a Gulag-apologist to think that he wasn't.

On behalf of our membership, and in memory of the tens of millions of innocent human beings butchered needlessly by the systematic sadism of the likes of Stalin and his henchmen, I would like to add my response to your article.

1. The notion that Nazi atrocities against Jews -- to the exclusion of any other victims -- must never be seen as secondary to the evil inflicted by other than Nazis against non-Jews is a twisted and facile attempt at debasement of historical truth that gives new meaning to the term "historical revisionism."

2. Such down-playing and marginalization of Communist crimes against humanity by elevating the Holocaust to pre-eminence is seen by its proponents as necessary in achieving a number of objectives, including:

  • rationalizing the crimes of the Communists and fellow leftists, largely because people like yourself support these crimes, and still justify them.

  • stoking the fires of what deceased British Chief Rabbi Jakobowitz called the "holocaust industry" -- which he characterized as an immoral stain on righteous Jews throughout the world.

  • justification for pro-Israeli lobbies in the West to continue sucking billions of Western tax dollars into the Israeli state.

  • obfuscating the dominant role Russian Jews played in the Soviet genocide during the 20th century -- for example, the role of KGB bosses Feliks Edmundovich Dzerzhinsky, Yagoda, Yezhov, Beria and Kaganovich, and the 52% of KGB operatives who ran amok in Ukraine.

  • deflecting the fact of modern-day brutality and (under the definition in the Rome Statute, 1998) war crimes committed by Israelis against Palestinians and others.

  • feeding the insatiable extortionary demands of millions of "Holocaust survivors" for endless compensation from European and American businesses and governments (although this sinister objective is probably pursued more by money-crazed lawyers than it is by genuine survivors) -- all to the exclusion of the many millions who suffered in Nazi camps and factories and who have never asked for a penny for their victimization.

  • perpetuating the mythology that is used as "historical evidence" in so-called war crimes prosecutions conducted in the USA by the Office of Special Investigations, and in Canada by the War Crimes Unit of the Justice Department.

  • relegating to non-existent status the sex-slave trade of young women (many of whom are minors) from eastern Europe, conducted by and for the rich and powerful in Israel.

  • obliterating from public consciousness the Ukrainian famines of 1924, of 1932-1933, and of 1948-1949 and the leading role played therein by Russian Jews, for fear that these truths might undermine the credibility of Holocaust "uniqueness."
  • Not only is your central thesis corrupt, but so too are the arguments you use to support it. One sample is the inclusion of "homosexuals" and of "Kosovo Albanians" in the list of what you claim makes up the "Holocaust equivalency movement" -- a tactic that is as equally disingenuous as it is puerile and racist.

    If we had any indication we were dealing with an honorable and rational person, we would ask for a published apology. However, we know this is not going to happen. Gulag apologists, as Mr. Jonas refers to you, could not possibly possess the moral fibre to admit their foolhardiness or complicity in supporting Communist crimes, as you have done, or in their obsession with re-writing history to suit the ill-conceived political agenda of their ideological masters.

    Eugene Harasymiw, LL.B.

    cc: National Executive, USRLC