Unless correspondents ask us not to, this Website will post selected letters that it receives and invite open debate.
from the United States, on April 6, 2000
HOW HITLER DICTATED HIS 1945 TESTAMENT ON THE JEWS
IT DID occur to me during the trial that Hitler's Final Political Testament might have been invoked as evidence against his personally having sanctioned the liquidation of European Jewry. (We are told by the Lipstadts of this world that European Jewry -- and German Jewry in particular -- was all but exterminated by the end of the war.)
Yet, dictating his testament prior to suicide, Hitler does not urge his political successors to complete his own almost fully successful extermination of the Jews. Instead, he states:
"Above all I charge the leaders of the nation and their followers to uphold the racial laws meticulously and to resist mercilessly the universal poisoner of all peoples, International Jewry."
I have a letter from Traudl Junge [Hitler's private secretary, who took his dictation of this document] from some years ago, stating that Hitler's voice remained as monotone at this point as it had throughout the rest of the dictation of his testament. No hysterically raised voice, no boast about having implemented 'die Endlösung'.
All of which is strange behaviour for someone alleged to have personally ordered, and been kept informed of, the destruction of the Jews. Instead, he exhorts his successors to uphold the Nuremberg Race Laws of September 1935, designed to make the social and political lives of Jews in Germany so untenable that they will emigrate. To an impartial observer, it would seem as though Hitler was unaware that his underlings had moved things on a bit, beginning in 1941.
His testament makes no bones about his hatred for the Jews -- so why does he talk as if unaware that they had been eradicated? With the Jews exterminated, what's the point of wittering on about upholding the 'racial laws'? Hitler's final remarks upon Jewry do not bear out the idea that he personally supervised the organisation for the murder of six million of them.
Compared with what it is alleged that he personally knew, his final comments on the subject are stupendously mild.
Of course, the Lipstadt camp made every effort throughout the trial to attempt to make the trial all about alleged "holocaust denial", and not the fact that, as a historian, you had posited the theory that Hitler personally had been unaware of the extent and methodology of the final solution. To say that very many Jews died most cruel deaths, but that the evidence does not show that the instigation for this emanated from Hitler personally, is -- as I don't need to tell you! -- a very different thing from 'denying the holocaust.'