The Rudolf Case (1994)

Interview with Germar Rudolf by Wilhelm Schlesiger, fall of 1994

Schlesiger: Mr. Rudolf, several things have been written and reported about you recently as the Auschwitz expert witness. People have accused you of all kinds of extremism and imputed that you were the chief ideologist of the political Right. But they never provide evidence for the accusations. After all that has been reported, I am mostly interested in what kind of man you are. What have been the principal influences on you in your youth, up until your just-completed 29th birthday?

Rudolf: Certainly my parents’ liberal-conservative Catholic home influenced me the most, with the religious and moral precepts that were taught there. In my youth and also during my chemistry studies I sought to be close to the Catholic Church, whether in Catholic youth work or in a Catholic student union, to which Cardinal Josef Höffner also belonged.

Schlesiger: Did you participate in any political activity during this period?

Rudolf: Yes, and it was in a sense Christian politics. This did not mean that I was enthusiastic for any political party. I was in the Young Union (of the CSU/CDU) for only a short time, and my interest in a Republic-wide CSU (Christian Social Union) came to an end when I realized that the CDU (Christian Democratic Union) would never tolerate a Republic-wide party in competition. All attempts in that direction to date have been blocked in every possible way, some of them very dubious.

Schlesiger: How do you see yourself politically now?

Rudolf: In no-man’s land. Today I am attempting to work on a scientific question in a purely professional manner and to leave all politics out of it. However, the world wants to politicize this question any way it can, which not only harms me and my work, but certainly also those who politicize it. Also, through my research I have come to the realization that there is nothing in the world more harmful than sanctified dogmas and ideologies that people try to enforce against reality at the expense of the rest of the world. In other words, I loathe the dirty business of politics.

Schlesiger: But the Catholic Church proclaims holy dogmas. Do you hold to those?

Rudolf: There is a logical conflict that I am not finished with. In this, I have two hearts in my breast.

Schlesiger: How does the Catholic Church behave toward you?

Rudolf: There has never been a problem.

Schlesiger: What relations do you have with Jews?

Rudolf: I must tell you, I do not know any. I have no relations with them. But even if I did know one, that would be a relationship with a specific person. He could not be considered as a representative of the Jews in general. I think the question is not useful. You could just as well ask, What relations do you have with Moslems? I would have the same response. Totally none. That would be the right answer.

Schlesiger: But you must surely have an idea about the Jews.

Rudolf: That was mostly formed by the picture that was presented through religious instruction during my school years, and thus it has an Old Testament character. My conception of modern Jewry is due to the current media picture of Israel and naturally also the interventions of the Central Council of the Jews in Federal German politics play a part. That is the limit of the place this subject occupies in my intellectual engagement with the world.

Schlesiger: Do you think that it is normal that a young Chemist should undertake to find out whether something might be wrong with the stories on the gas chambers of Auschwitz?

Rudolf: No, not at all. I remember well how during school we disliked to have to hear stories about the Holocaust. It is much more normal for one to avoid these ugly themes, which are unpleasant especially for Germans. That is the normal reaction of people today when I would like to discuss the issue with them. The reaction is much the same in foreign countries. Who wants to root around in the real or even only supposed piles of corpses of bygone times?

Schlesiger: What caused you to do this research, then?

Rudolf: The main reason has to do with my upbringing. In my childhood and youth, the art of open discussion, the objective confrontation with the opinions of others, was one of the most difficult nuts for me to crack. It took me a long time to accept that one had to tolerate completely divergent opinions in order not to condemn the person who held them. Even in the case of such opinions, one must first listen closely so as to grasp the arguments and be able to refute them. That is one of the main purposes of education for democracy and was one of the ideals of the ’68 movement: Above all, everything should be up for discussion without taboos.

Schlesiger: Did you dedicate yourself to research on Auschwitz because you noticed that there was no open discussion in that subject?

Rudolf: Not right away. At first I heard some people who held the opinion that there was something wrong with the established historical account on the Holocaust. Usually people leave such people out in the rain with their opinions or attempt to shut them up, through the courts, for example. That did not seem to me to be the right way for an enlightened young man who is competent in debate and willing to discuss.

Schlesiger: And then you had doubts yourself of your understanding of history?

Rudolf: Not from the first few conversations, since I thought the arguments were somewhat miserable. Then after a discussion with a former FDP (Free Democratic Party) member I discovered that there were people who could discuss even this subject objectively and controversially without the usual hysteria. That impressed me greatly. Then I began to look at the subject more critically myself.

Schlesiger: Did this FDP member convince you?

Rudolf: He would not have been able to do that, but it was not his intention. The method he practiced was the no-holds-barred, taboo-free, open discussion of anything that people usually consider untouchable. He had only prepared my mind to admit doubt, nothing more.

Schlesiger: This laid the mental foundation on which your later work as an expert witness could build. In Fall 1993 you gave an interview to Fritz Berg, a member of the Institute for Historical Review in California, on the origin of your expert report on the gas chambers of Auschwitz. In this interview you have stated that the German Institute for Contemporary History did not respond to your requests. In the meantime a position paper appeared from the Institute for Contemporary History. [1]

Rudolf: Correct. The Institute thought that it did not need to examine my report for two reasons: First, that the mass-murder of Jews in the gas chambers of Auschwitz was common knowledge, and therefore not refutable, and second, that the French pharmacist Pressac had recently reestablished the existence of gas chambers.

In my view, the first reason is peculiar: Even the official contemporary history institute of the Federal Republic of Germany avoids the argument and refers to common knowledge. Formerly the men and women of this institute had responded to uncomfortable inquiries at least with a few presumptuous arguments taken from various places in the literature. They did not rely on common knowledge. That is equivalent to a capitulation.

Schlesiger: But the Institute also referred to the French pharmacist Pressac …

Rudolf: … who did not address my work with a single word. His approach to the research had essentially nothing in common with my expert report. While I was concerned with technical and physical scientific questions, he had merely pulled together some documents and used this documentary apparatus to tell a story. I have recently prepared a short expert report on the question, whether Pressac’s new book can be considered a scientific work. I direct you to that paper for any further comment and for further critical literature on Pressac’s work. The reference to Pressac from the Institute for Contemporary History is therefore completely irrelevant as a refutation of my expert report. There is hardly any point of contact between the two works.

Letter from the Central Council of Jews in Germany to the President of the Max Planck Society, Prof. Dr. Hans F. Zacher, June 22, 1993

Letter from the Central Council of Jews in Germany to the President of the Max Planck Society, Prof. Dr. Hans F. Zacher, June 22, 1993. (Click to enlarge. For enlarged German original, click here).

Answer of the President of the Max Planck Society, Prof. Dr. Hans F. Zacher, to the Central Council of Jews in Germany, July 14, 1993

Answer of the President of the Max Planck Society, Prof. Dr. Hans F. Zacher, to the Central Council of Jews in Germany, July 14, 1993. (Click to enlarge). For enlarged German original, click here).

Schlesiger: In the interview given above you spoke of measures taken against you. The first thing here is the house search that you had to submit to. Can you tell us how it could come to that?

Rudolf: Already by Fall 1992 I had received notice from the State Attorney that they were going to investigate me. I was accused of having written an expert report on the gas chambers of Auschwitz which General-major Remer was going to use as propaganda in his newsletter Remer Depesche. I heard nothing else at the time since no further steps were taken.

Then in April 1993 the situation became acute when, illegally and against my express conditions, General-major Remer took a pirated copy of my expert report, laced it with a juicy political commentary and sent it to all the politicians, jurists, media people and scientists he could think of. Thereupon in July 1993, the State Attorney’s Office initiated an investigation process for incitement to defamation of Jews and for race persecution of Jews, since they falsely assumed that I was behind Remer’s operation. Suddenly, at 7:00 hours in the morning on the 30th September, 2 uniformed policemen, 7 police investigators, 2 State Attorneys and an official from the village where I lived appeared at my dwelling and seized everything that was not nailed down: files, letters, bank statements, books, research material, computer equipment, photographs, and so on.

Schlesiger: That was an unusually well-staffed operation. Normally during a house search there are only a few officials present and hardly ever attorneys.

Rudolf: I assume that the State Attorneys did not trust their own officials, especially because they knew that this was an arbitrary political measure for which they were being misused against their wishes.

Schlesiger: Would not the State Attorneys also have resisted it?

Rudolf: One of the two State Attorneys was a Mr. Schrimm, who for decades has pursued all real or presumed Nazi criminals and Holocaust Revisionists mercilessly. He was considered very keen and politically absolutely reliable. From him certainly there would have been no complaint about an illegal operation.

Schlesiger: Did you ever get your documents back? That was 6 months ago.

Rudolf: Not a piece. They investigated until they dropped and apparently found nothing they could use against me. Probably a few hundred years from now someone will conduct another investigation and I will be rehabilitated like Galileo Galilei was, 400 years after his death.

Schlesiger: Your dismissal from the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research is another matter. Now there is a document which shows that the Central Council of Jews in Germany put heavy pressure on the Max Planck Society in order to curtail your work as an expert witness. Did this letter lead to your dismissal?

Rudolf: The letter dates from after my dismissal, and therefore can not have influenced my dismissal. The telephone conversation with Bubis mentioned in the letter, which happened in April, possibly did have an effect.

This letter of the Central Council was presented by the Max Planck Society in the trial before the Labor Court as additional evidence that I was unsuitable for employment. Based on that, Bubis intercession must have left a powerful impression. However, various groups of a political, commercial or scientific nature interceded with the MPG (Max Planck Society), so it is hard to put the blame on only one party.

Schlesiger: How did the trial before the Labor Court end?

Rudolf: With a retraction of the termination without notice by the Max Planck Society. It was replaced by a mutual agreement to terminate employment.

Schlesiger: Therefore a partial victory for you?

Rudolf: No, it was really an act of mercy on the part of the MPG, because the judge on the Labor Court had made it clear during the trial that anyone who maintained that certain events of the Holocaust could not have taken place was beyond the protection of the law. Any such employee could therefore be terminated at any time. She effectively declared me to be a outlaw.

Schlesiger: Shortly before your dismissal in May 1993, and immediately after the trial before the Labor Court, the Max Planck Society issued two press statements which were basically the same. On the 29th March 1994, you wrote an open letter to the Max Planck Society responding to their press statement of 28th March 1994. The statements you made in it are not exactly the best way to make friends. After all, you accuse the most well-respected research institute of the world of scientific incompetence.

Rudolf: To my mind it is pathetic when such a well-respected group as the Max Planck Society refuses to involve itself in the now pressing question of the technical feasibility of the supposed unique mass murder of Jews in the Third Reich by simple deference to “common knowledge”. It is true that my writing style is provocative, but obviously the scientists of our country do not understand even this blatantly clear German anymore. But sooner or later they are going to have to deal with my arguments, because I will not be silent. I welcome counter-arguments, and to get them I am apparently going to have to stomp on the toes of these gentlemen who have gone to sleep in their official positions.

Schlesiger: The improper use of Institute letterhead for your private letters was supposedly one of the main reasons they came against you.

Rudolf: Correct, supposedly only the official representatives of the Institute should use Institute letterhead. What almost nobody realizes is that until the turn of the year 1991/1992, the Max Planck Institute had a mainframe computer on which almost everyone at the Institute wrote his correspondence, usually including private correspondence. This mainframe computer was set up to place the official letterhead automatically on any letter that it printed out. This means that up to that point practically everyone at the Institute had used the official letterhead. When you know that, you realize why this little abuse of employment had become practically normal misbehaviour, and at the time I only wrote a small amount of my correspondence that way.

Schlesiger: DEGUSSA AG was very disturbed over the use of MPI letterhead. An employee of theirs declared in an sworn statement that he would have never given you any information had he known the purpose of your research. He and also his company said that your acknowledgement of them was equivalent to slander. What do you say to that accusation?

Rudolf: You can be sure that I could have gotten the information I needed from DEGUSSA or from any other firm if I had signed under my own letterhead as a Diplom Chemist instead of under MPI letterhead. It is an important marketing tool for a company to provide information on its product line to outside technical persons. Without product information business would die. DEGUSSA’s shreiks about the letterhead are childish.

Also I find DEGUSSA’s statement significant that they would only provide information when they approve of the purpose for which it will be used. Apparently, the company does not hold the scientific independence of the researchers in their employ in high regard. A documented, technically sound response to the main points in my expert report would have been more appropriate. The only response that they could come up with, though, was to execrate me.

Heinrich Winkeler

Auf der Röde 3
63584 Gründau
March 10, 1994

Sworn Affidavit

[…] I have been an employee of the firm Degussa since 1974 […]

In June 1991 I received a request from Mr. Germar Rudolf of the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research/Stuttgart about the lime resistance of VOSSEN-Blau. As was my job, […] I sent him data and sent him my written technical appraisal on June 18, 1991 by fax […]. At that time I acted on the assumption that this was in the interest of the cooperative relationship of Degussa and the Max Planck Institute and concerned only technical matters.

On March 9, 1994 I came into possession of the so-called “Rudolf Expert Report”, which referred to my technical appraisal on page 51 and cited my letter to the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research/Stuttgart, together with my name, in the table of sources at [139].

I am angered that my name and that of my company should be named in this connection. Had I known that my information would be used for neo-Nazi propaganda purposes, I would not have provided any of it and would have refused any further contact. I have informed my management of this affair in detail.

I am incensed at sneaky dealing of this sort and consider myself personally injured by the deceitfulness with which I was misused in connection with this hack-work.

/s/ Heinrich Winkeler

It is a real puzzle to me, what the stability of VOSSEN blau (iron blue) on lime plaster has to do with neo-Nazi propaganda. There is none of that in my expert report. It discusses only chemical and engineering questions.

It is something new to me that the acknowledgements that can be found at the end of every scientific report can suddenly become slander. I merely acknowledged everyone who helped in any way. This does not indicate that the direct or indirect helpers knew what the results of my research would be beforehand. I did not know them myself. You can imagine what these good people would be saying today, if I had come to an opposite conclusion to the one I did come to. I am sure I would be heaped with honor and favor. The acknowledgements I gave at the end of the expert report are usual in the scientific world. What is not usual is the result of my research. That is the source of the problem.

Moreover, the commission to prepare an expert report was only given to me in July 1991. Before that, the research, including the inquiries to Degussa, had only been a spare-time activity with no particular purpose. The management of the Institute had assured me at the time that this pursuit of extra-curricular research with ordinary facilities of the Institue such as libraries and databases was not only not forbidden, but that it was looked on favorably as promoting motivation for research.

Schlesiger: In your open letter to the Max Planck Society, you mention that the attorneys for Degussa had claimed that their client would lose all business from the USA under pressure from Israel. However, in the corresponding letter from the attorneys it states only that Degussa might suffer a loss of business with the USA and Israel.

Rudolf: Correct. When I wrote the open letter I had only received information by telephone on the attorneys’ letter, which I either misunderstood or which was misreported to me. I received a photocopy of the letter just a week later. I need to revise this passage of my letter. However, it seems very interesting to me what criteria Degussa thinks Israeli and US companies will apply when placing orders. Especially because Israel and the USA are those countries of the world in which Jewish power is the greatest, one can guess from what quarter the direct or indirect influence came that caused Degussa to fear for its business. Also, it is irrelevant whether the pressure was applied direcly from Israel or came from some local group with similar motivation.

Schlesiger: Now you were not only without a job, but also the University refused to allow you to take your doctoral examination. What was their reason for that?

Rudolf: Since I had completed all formal and scientific requirements, according to standing legal doctrine I had a right to admission to the doctoral examination. However, the University took the position that I was not worthy to seek the doctoral degree.

Schlesiger: Worthiness as a qualification for candidates for holders of academic degrees was first set forth in a law of Adolf Hitler in 1939. [10]

Rudolf: That is true, but it contained no specifically Nazi ideological baggage and therefore it is still in force today. The Administrative Court of Mannheim has ruled that an applicant’s worthiness to seek an academic degree must be assumed even when he has been sentenced for a serious crime which was entered in his police record, when the sentence was not pronounced through proper process of law. [11]

Schlesiger: That does not apply in your case.

Rudolf: I had not even been charged with anything. [12] However, the University had blocked my degree application because they were waiting for an indictment to come down against me or against General-major Remer, and would then decide whether I should be allowed to take the examination or not. This is scandalous in itself, since no one even knew whether there would be a charge made against me. That my degree application should be dependent on a possible criminal trial against an outside party is hard to comprehend. It is likewise hard to comprehend that they should withheld from me my right to a final examination, although this can only be done after one has first been sentenced for a serious crime. In a state under the rule of law, one is supposed to be considered innocent unless the contrary can be proven by proper process of law. Therefore, it should not have been possible to deprive me of my rights on the basis of an investigation whose outcome no one could know in advance.

Schlesiger: Did you inform the University of these facts?

Rudolf: Certainly. The University justified its behavior with the above-mentioned Administrative Court decision, although in my view it supported my right to my final examination. Not only that, that ruling pertained to a man applying for a doctoral degree whose police record contained misdemeanors for opium use and violations of property rights, but who had shown that he was rehabilitated. When I pointed out that in a state under the rule of law, everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty, the University official handling my case told me that this was not always so. But he would not give details about the exceptions.

Schlesiger: What do you plan to do to contest this high-handedness?

Rudolf: I have filed a formal complaint against the University. This will show whether Revisionists are people without rights.

 

Schlesiger: In an article you have described a news article by the German Press Agency dpa as a fraud. Has dpa ever told you where they got their expert opinion or who was responsible for the notice?

Rudolf: I heard nothing further from Mr. Meinecke after he trapped himself helplessly in his contradictory statements. After I had pressed them further, the chief of the dpa Inland Division at Hamburg came up with an explanation (see transcript). He claimed that the technical expert who had provided the opinion had asked that his name be withheld.

Schlesiger: Do you think his explanation makes sense?

Rudolf: This explanation from the dpa made me laugh. The dpa is stuck. They have been caught in their own trap and can not get out. Shortly after I had received the letter from the chief editor, on April 15, 1994 I received a fax from Stuttgart with the following text: “Dear Mr. Rudolf, I deny your accusations. In the future, please address any inquiries concerning this matter to the chief editor in Hamburg. Respectfully, Meinecke”.

This automatically-generated letter without a personal signature arrived two weeks after the fraudulent dpa news article. Apparently, Meinecke had been forbidden by the chief editor to make any defense to my accusations or to make any further comment in the matter, to avoid further embarassment.

dpa

Chief Inland

dpa Deutsche Presseagentur GmbH, Post box 13 02 82, 20102 Hamburg

Hamburg, the 13th April 1994

Dear Mr. […],

[…] in the notice that you refer to the dpa never asserted that the expert opinion on the disintegration of iron blue came from information supplied by the Max Planck Society.

We have relied upon a technical expert whose professional qualifications have been and are unquestionable. This scientist has asked us not to give his name out, for reasons which we must respect.

Mr. Rudolf’s message of 8th April, in which he accused the dpa of falsification, contains a number of untrue assertions — not only with respect to information that was supposedly given to callers to the Stuttgart office but also others.

I deny these assertions as well as your accusation to Mr. Meinecke, that he “lied through his teeth”. The dpa has certainly fabricated nothing and falsified nothing.

As far as the scientific issue is concerned, the fact that Prussic acid itself disintegrates rapidly is not disputed. We have confirmation from competent quarters as to the fact that stable cyanide may appear as a by-product, but does not necessarily appear.

With friendly greetings,

/s/ Dieter Ebeling, substitute Chief Editor

Let me make a few things clear at this point. In the above letter, the substitute Chief Editor indirectly confirms that Mr. Meinecke was the person responsible for this dpa news article. Further, there is no question that Meinecke said on the telephone that the experts were from the Max Planck Society. The latter, however, had in the meantime made a written declaration that they were not the source of the comment on the lack of stability of cyanide compounds. They coyly characterized the dpa wording as mistaken. [17] That the wording of the dpa article must necessarily have led to misunderstanding — which was the reason for my charge that the dpa introduced this misunderstanding intentionally — can be seen from the reaction in the newspapers that followed from the dpa article. They have stated on inquiry that the notice meant that the technical experts mentioned there were from the MPG. [18]

Moreover, it is undisputed that throughout two weeks during which several persons were waiting on the dpa for the names of the technical experts, at no point did the existence of this ominous anonymous expert occur to Mr. Meinecke and he suffered my accusations without attempting to defend himself.

Schlesiger: Then you believe that if there had been an anonymous technical expert, that Mr. Meinecke would have known of his existence from the beginning and would have defended himself immediately.

Rudolf: Of course. If there had been an anonymous technical expert, there is no reason why Meinecke would not have relied on him right away. Instead, he lied until the cows came home and then cowered in silence for 10 days and finally hid under papas coat by calling on Hamburg to sort things out. What this means is, he needed his boss to cover his hindquarters. Possibly it was the Chief Editor who pulled the emergency brake and took the business out of Meinecke’s hands when things threatened to go out of control.

Schlesiger: Can you think of any reason why a supposed anonymous technical expert would not want to be named?

Rudolf: Only one: he was ashamed of the intellectual stinky-poo he had dropped on us.

Schlesiger: Ebeling says in his letter that the technical assertions were confirmed from competent quarters. Apparently, they are still holding to the line that the original dpa notice was technically correct.

Rudolf: In my opinion, the anonymity of the technical expert in itself proves the technical falsity of the notice. If it were technically sound, there would be no reason for the supposed expert to remain anonymous. No, there would have been any number of technical experts would have broken an arm in order to appear as heroes in the fight against the — oh, so horrible! — Revisionism, who would have wanted to be named.

I think the following explanation is far more plausible: The substitute Chief Editor of the dpa invented the anonymous technical expert to cover his subordinate for his previous lie, because the dpa can not allow that scandal should occur if Revisionists could show that they intentionally falsified their news reports.

Schlesiger: However, Ebeling made some arguments that seem to support the dpa thesis.

Rudolf: Mr. Ebeling’s arguments are a masterpiece of disinformation and diversion. The stability of Prussic acid itself is not discussed either in my expert report nor in the dpa notice and is not relevant to the question at hand. What matters here are certain salts of Prussic acid, cyanides of the type of iron blue. Also, Ebeling’s assertion that not all possible by-products of Prussic acid are necessarily stable, is not in question. Every acid in the world forms both stable and unstable by-products. For this trivial assertion, one need not consult with competent authority, it is simple logic. The important question here is whether cyanide compounds that have formed in masonry are stable over time. The dpa has blankly said, they would dissolve within a few weeks. That is nothing but stupidity. The cyanide compounds that form in those conditions remain intact for centuries.

Schlesiger: Now, the dpa notice contains many other untrue passages, such as the untrue suggestion that the Institute Fresenius was engaged through a letter written on MPI letterhead. Have you done anything to get the newspapers to report these facts correctly?

Rudolf: Yes, but unfortunately without success. At the moment I have filed complaints against several newspapers in court in order to get them to print a correction.

Schlesiger: Do you think you will prevail?

Rudolf: That depends on the judges. If the judges follow the same line as the judge on the Labor Court, then no, because by this line of thinking I have no rights because I am a Revisionist.

Schlesiger: Another significant event in the witchhunt against you was the left-wing program Report broadcast by the Südwestfunk of the ARD (Association of Public Broadcasting Stations of Germany) on 11th April 1994. When and how did you find out that television was starting to worry about you?

Rudolf: Stefan Rocker, the reporter responsible for this piece, had called me on the telephone two weeks prior to ask for an interview ….

Schlesiger: … that you evidently did not grant him.

Rudolf: I would gladly have given him an interview. But only if it were a live broadcast or if it would deal principally with my technical arguments. But Rocker told me that he was not interested in any discussion on technical points and that he only wanted to explore the political side of the business. He said quite openly that he wanted to uncover the politically right-wing or right-wing extremist intentions and connections that he suspected were harbored by those holding Revisionist viewpoints. He had made the same sort of proposal to Prof. Haverbeck, who thereupon declined to subject himself to Rocker’s inquisition.

Schlesiger: Then it was clear to you from the beginning that the piece would not contain any technical discussion and that it was merely for the purpose of defaming you as a neo-Nazi.

Rudolf: That’s what I expected. Two days before, in front of a group of perhaps 45 people, I spoke somewhat as follows: Since they have practically no pictures of German Revisionists, what they will show will be scenes from the film Schindler’s List, as well as the usual pictures of corpses, supposedly of dead Jews, the burnt-out synagogue of Lübeck, some scenes from gatherings of right-wing or right-wing extremist groups, and maybe some youths throwing Hitler salutes.

Schlesiger: Your predictions were right on the money. Let me now run down the list of what this piece described as dangerous right-wing extremism, besides you yourself. There was the American gas chamber expert F.A. Leuchter with the NPD (National Party of Germany) Federal President G. Deckert, the British historian D. Irving, history professors E. Schlee and W.G. Haverbeck, the right-wing publisher Grabert Verlag, the conservative journal Criticon, the conservative weekly newspaper Junge Freiheit, books from Germany’s largest publisher Ullstein-Langen Müller, the liberal-conservative daily newspaper Die Welt and the liberal Bavarian Thomas Dehler Foundation. Everything right of the left wing of the CDU was implicated as right-wing extremist, if one were to believe Report.

Rudolf: What Report did was to put out a giant pot, label it “politically suspect”, throw into it everything right of the middle left wing and pour a thick brown sauce over the whole thing. This undifferentiated one-pot politics shows that the reason for the piece was smear journalism of the vilest kind.

Schlesiger: Let us take a few scenes that concern you directly. They claimed that you gave the name Das Blaubuch (The Blue Book) to your expert report, as a cynical allusion to the poison gas agent Zyklon B.

Rudolf: That’s an interesting point. I have never given anyone access to an expert report that bore this name. My expert report has been published with the title Das Rudolf Gutachten (The Rudolf Expert Report), and even the pirated version that Remer sent out was called merely, Gutachten über die Bildung und Nachweisbarkeit von Cyanidverbindungen in den ‘Gaskammern’ von Auschwitz (Expert Report on the Formation and Detectability of Cyanide Compounds in the ‘Gas Chambers’ of Auschwitz). Around the turn of the year 1991/1992, I chose the title Blaubuch (Bluebook) for a manuscript that was never published nor reproduced. Also, the title Blaubuch had nothing to do with Zyklon B directly, but was due to the dye iron blue, which has become so well-known, that had formed in the delousing chambers in Auschwitz from Prussic acid in the agent Zyklon B. I discarded it just because I feared at that time that people might reproach me for cynicism in my choice of title. That manuscript was seized by the police in September 1993 when they searched my house. Apparently, the police passed the document on to Südwestfunk. It is possible that a complaint for misuse of office is in order here. In any case, the title page shown by Report had nothing to do with the authorized published form of the expert report.

Schlesiger: Did you advertise using the name of your former employer?

Rudolf: The publishing house that published the expert report did the advertising for it. Since I have sold the copyright for my expert report, I have no further say in the matter. The advertising put out by the publisher merely contained substantial excerpts from a press declaration of the Max Planck Society, which described under what circumstances the expert report was written, what it dealt with and who in leading circles knew about it and when. Since a press declaration is intended for public consumption, it certainly can not be held against the publisher that they make use of it.

Schlesiger: In the advertising it was mentioned that your expert report had not been technically disputed.

Rudolf: That is true also. That does not mean that there is not something in the report that could be faulted. However, the MPG and all other researchers would rather avoid any comment on the technical content of the report and hide behind the excuse of “common knowledge”.

Schlesiger: But in your interview with Mr. Berg from the IHR you have described how your doctoral supervisor had made technical objections to your expert report.

Rudolf: In Summer 1992 he made objections to the report as it stood at that time, which do not apply to the version that is in print today. I believe I have satisfactorily disabled these objections, which in any case were made behind closed doors. I will accept them as honest objections when he sees fit to make them in public. What I want is public discussion on arguments and counter-arguments.

Schlesiger: Report accuses you of attempting to give your expert report an air of competence by your citation of well-known institutes and companies.

Rudolf: In the body of the expert report there is no reference to a company for the purpose of conjuring up a air of competence. Only in the acknowledgements in the appendix are people and institutions named to whom I considered that I owed thanks. The question of the competence of my expert report does not depend at all on whom I have thanked in the acknowledgements and whom not, but simply and solely on whether the expert report can carry its argument or not. The acknowledgements do not belong to the report proper and in the report proper there was no attempt made to heighten the impression of competence by use of the services of various companies or institutes. In the thanks given in the acknowledgements there are named off to one side those to whom I had something to thank for. There is nothing more to it.

Schlesiger: Then the implication that you might be liable for a criminal complaint on grounds of fraud is baseless?

Rudolf: I know of no criminal complaint against me on grounds of fraud. But, perhaps Report knows something I do not. I suspect that what is behind this is the phony flap over the acknowledgements started by DEGUSSA. Also, in Spring 1993 the Institute Fresenius started a buzz about damage to reputation and wanted to sue me for an enormous amount. This effort died quickly because it was juristically hopeless.

Schlesiger: Another thing to deal with is Mr. Rocker’s claim that you are the same person as the author of the book Vorlesungen über Zeitgeschichte (Lectures on Contemporary History), Dr.rer.nat. Ernst Gauss.

Rudolf: What amazes me most about the discussion on Dr. Gauss is this: The use of pseudonyms in literature is a common practice and the law of the press protects use of pseudonyms explicitly. It is easy to see why, since pseudonyms are an important protection of freedom of opinion, since they enable authors who publish on socially divisive subjects to live their private lives in peace. That Report would try to characterize the use of a pseudonym in this case as a wicked deception merely proves that what they are after is the social proscription of the author in the manner of a witchhunt and not a substantive discussion on the issues.

Schlesiger: Report later presents a few passages from a letter that you supposedly wrote to Prof. Haverbeck. They imply that you were going to use this “begging letter” (verbal description by Report) to ask for support for your anti-Holocaust research. To show this, Report faded in the following text that was supposedly part of the letter, in which you ask Prof. Haverbeck to procure “in your circle of acquaintance, in the most discrete way … the necessary means … sums over 10,000″. The letter also supposedly contains: “The most complete discretion is advised … Let Germany count on you!” What is this letter about?

Rudolf: An important technique of manipulative journalism is to tear words, parts of sentences and sentences out of context and to put them into a new and essentially different context. Report portrayed these sentence fragments as if I had attempted to get Prof. Haverbeck to pump as many people as possible for sums of money more than deutschemarks 10,000 for my own private purposes, and had appealed to nationalistic affection in doing so. In the letter Report referred to, which could only have come from my papers in the possession of the police, the purpose was entirely different: A journalist of my acquaintance had been wanting for some time to make a trip to Moscow to do research in the archives there, which was not related to my expert report. For a stay of possibly several weeks he would need a sum of some 10,000 deutschemarks. At that time I had explained his project to several men of my acquaintance, mentioned his need for financing and told them how to get in contact with the journalist. Thus I was only a middleman. I have never begged for money for my own research from anyone, and certainly never for sums of more than 10,000 deutschemarks. It is possible that some of the passages cited by Reportwere fabricated. In particular, I had only asked for one sum of 10,000 deutschemarks, never for any number of sums!

Schlesiger: What does the sentence referring to the thanks of the fatherland mean?

Rudolf: The above-mentioned research project concerned an important historical question whose clarification could be beneficial to the historical portrayal of Germany. By the way, an appeal to patriotism is considered honorable in 179 of the 180 countries of the world. That it should be suspect in the 180th country, namely in Germany, may be the desire of the journalists of Report and others like them, but that will not prevent me from making such appeals, particularly as I was not asking for money for my own use.

Schlesiger: Can you think of other places in which Report used the manipulative technique of tearing fragments out of context?

Rudolf: Yes, there is a whole laundry list of them. The business of the thanks in the acknowledgements was one. Report faded in the names Degussa and Institute Fresenius and implied that the purpose was to pretend to competence. Without knowing that he was being manipulated, the listener would not have understood that the names were part of a list of names in the acknowledgements with no special significance.

A particularly crass example was used against Ernst Gauss. Report asserted that Gauss made the claim that the selections in Auschwitz were not a prelude to death, “but only served to, quote: ‘give better medical care to sick Jews'”Report faded in three words from a passage in the Gauss book, on page 217: “special medical care”. In order to show how Report manipulated this part, let me quote a longer passage from the Gauss book and underline the fragments picked out by Report (G=Gauss, Q=inquirer): [19]

G:

One of the principal points of the witness testimony on concentration camp Auschwitz […] concern the so-called selections at the death ramp. […] According to witness testimony, those prisoners that did not appear to the selecting medical doctors as fit for work, such as the sick, infirm, old people and children, were sent to the gas chambers. In that case these prisoners’ names could not have been logged in the camp register. Thus the supposed gas chamber victims would never have been registered. […]

At the beginning of 1990, it was reported in the German press that the Soviets were going to give the death register of concentration camp Auschwitz to the Tracing Center of the International Red Cross at Arolsen. This register contains details of the deaths of 74,000 persons. […]

Thanks to certain connections, it has been possible […] to get a look at these books. […] The register contains names only of such victims as had been logged in the camp main register. No gas chamber victims names would appear.

[…] If one assumes that this register was properly maintained, […] then, according to the witness testimony, it should contain as follows:

Cases of deaths of people 60 or 70 years or older and of people under 10 years should hardly ever appear, since these people were “unfit for work” and were supposedly gassed right off. This should apply particularly to persons of the Mosaic faith (Jews).

At first only a few cases from the death register could be properly evaluated. […] Of course, the statistics given here can not be taken as representative. Nevertheless, the evidence they give indicates that further research is called for.

[…] One noticeable fact is that the number of deaths of old people among the regularly registered prisoners was quite large, which is not consistent with the witness testimony. […]

This fact is more illuminating when the cases of death are divided by cause of death, in Table 4.3. Infirmity from old age is the cause of death in over one third of all cases, followed by typhus infection […]. The next most frequent causes of death are heart- and circulation- failure, of which mostly older people died, but also a surprisingly large proportion of younger people, which could be evidence of poor living conditions. The further causes, such as enteritis, gastritis and Angina Pectoris, should not normally lead to death given correct medical treatment. This is evidence of a lack of medical care.

Another surprising fact is that, of those who died from infirmity of old age, over half were of the Jewish faith.

Therefore, it can be seen that the statements on the selections at the ramp can not be right. The determination of unfitness for work, which could have taken place through a selection, apparently did not entail immediate death in a gas chamber. […]

[…] I am of the conviction that the prisoners were indeed subjected to selection on arrival at the camp. Even sick or weak prisoners in the camp could have been subjected to selection, meaning separation. To go by the data given here, however, the purpose of this selection was probably not automatically to send people to “gas chambers” or “forced labor”, but was probably a question of which quarter a prisoner would be sent to, or which outlying camp a prisoner would be sent to. In the vicinity of Auschwitz there were over 30 outlying camps in which prisoners were employed for various purposes. Also, the transferral of sick or weak prisoners from the outlying camps to Birkenau did not necessarily mean that they were marked for death, but may merely have meant that they were being sent to the large camp-complex of Birkenau, where special medical care would be provided.

Q:

Are you saying that everything possible was done to care for the prisoners in Auschwitz?

G:

What causes you to think always in extremes? Can you not see any possibilities beyond those of ghastly annihilation and a holiday rest home? Who is saying that concentration camp Auschwitz was a rest home for prisoners? That is nonsense which you are spouting. I have already spoken of the deadly epidemics which raged in Birkenau and have mentioned that the data from the death register of Auschwitz speaks to a lack of medical care. Also, the figure of nearly 100,000 deaths in the camp at Auschwitz is hardly an indication of the well-being of the inmates. These deaths were nearly 10% of the prisoners who were delivered or who passed through, to go by the transport lists. What is the point of your useless polemic?

Rudolf: One can easily see that Report grossly distorted the very articulated and by no means conclusory discussion in the Gauss book. The fragments quoted by Report do not exist, and the three words faded in without any context have nothing to do with the selection on the ramp but probably relate to sorting people to the outlying camps of the sanitary area of Birkenau. There is obviously nothing left of the implication of Report that Gauss has conjured up special medical attention given to Auschwitz prisoners. I call this type of reporting incitement to persecution.

Schlesiger: Now we come to the method of suggestive association through use of pictures. Report showed a videofilm of youths in somebody’s living room watching a recording of Hitler speaking before the Reichstag.

Rudolf: I have seen this scene often in similar agitation broadcasts. It is part of the standard repertoire of such “documentaries”. The viewer is supposed to think that Revisionists are secret Hitler worshippers. This is never stated, but that is how many people will understand it. It has nothing to do with the truth.

Schlesiger: Report then showed the burnt-out synagoge in Lübeck, and at the same time suggested that now that Auschwitz-deniers are back in business more synagogues will burn. They faded in to scenes of your Labor Court trial against the MPG and mentioned that this took place three days before the arson. Report thus made use of the arson at the synagogue to implicate you and others like you in a sort of paper complicity for the deed. Report even used the words “Bieder- und Hintermännern” (Everyman and accomplices), an allusion to Biedermann und die Brandstifter (Everyman and the Arsonists). [20] What is your response to these imputations?

Rudolf: On 9.4.1994, Die Welt reported that classified documents in the State Attorney’s Office indicated that the perpetrators were from the Near East. If the arsonists are radical Arab powers, there can be only one reason to keep this a secret, namely, in order to blame the Lübeck arson on the political right-wing and justify any kind of repression against right-wing elements and also against historical Revisionists.

However, if radical Jewish elements are behind the attack on the synagogue, who might be from the Near East, then again the State Attorney would probably attempt to keep this information secret. The incident in Lübeck serves no one better than left-wing and (pro-) Jewish elements, since it gives them free rein against their ideological enemies. On the other hand, no one is hurt more by such attacks than the right-wing and the Revisionists, and that is why they both fear such incidents like nothing else. I think one should take those things into consideration. My opinion is that politicians and the media are using the arson attack at Lübeck without concern as to who the actual perpetrators are, so that they can undertake a real witchhunt against the right-wing and the Revisionists. Entire categories of the population are to be condemned before the fact and the condemnation will be used to justify stripping them of their rights. Among left-wingers this procedure is called fascistic.

Schlesiger: Is your attorney a right-wing extremist, as Report claims?

Rudolf: You must put yourself in my place, and consider how difficult it would be to find an attorney who would defend you in trials such as mine without condition or evasion. You would quickly discover that hardly any attorney will take such a case, because they are afraid for their reputation, in that they would soon be identified with the actual or imputed crimes of their client. In a state under the rule of law, however, every defendant in a trial is allowed to have defense counsel. Therefore, when I can find an attorney who has experience in such trials and who will disregard the hostility from society to defend me or others like me, no one should blame him for this. Anyone who does so puts himself outside the order of the rule of law. The only thing that people might resent about my attorney is that, since in addition to many other cases, he takes cases from right-wingers and Revisionists, he does not fear the opinion terror ruling society. Any such attorney should be praised for preserving the rule of law in that he defends cases in which the State Attorney’s Office and the media work together for political purposes. I hold defense attorneys of terrorists as well as arson and murder case with a high political profile in the same high regard. In such trials defense attorneys are subjected to heavy calumniation in a manner reminiscent of show trials. Any attorney who does not cave in in such cases is a hero in my eyes.

Schlesiger: Is your defense attorney a right-wing extremist?

Rudolf: I have never discussed worldviews with him. You should ask him that question. I think what Report was trying to achieve with these insults and calumniation was to undermine the ability of myself and all other Revisionists to defend ourselves in court, even more than has already been done. When an attorney must reckon with the likelihood that he will be labelled a right-wing extremist in the media when he accepts the defense of a Revisionist, soon there will be no more attorneys willing to defend one of the latter.

Schlesiger: Let us take another sequence from the Report documentary. It is introduced with an air-reconnaissance photograph of the Birkenau camp. Next, there is a picture of a large number of people in an open area, then, a long queue of naked men standing in front of a building. This is followed by a sign with the words, “Bad und Desinfektion II” (bath and disinfestation 2nd), and finally there is an open area strewn with emaciated corpses. The whole sequence is accompanied with the commentary that the purpose of Revisionism is to free the Third Reich from the blame of responsibility for the annihilation of the Jews. For this reason Revisionism denies the murder of 6 million Jews in the annihilation camps, mostly by gassing.

Rudolf: What is being suggested to the viewer here is that the people gathered in the open area or standing in line are waiting to be liquidated in the gas chamber disguised with the sign “bath and disinfection”. The corpses are shown as the apparent result, and the viewer would get the impression that they had been the victims of mass murder. But, in fact, there are no photos of people waiting for their death by gassing, and the picture with the numerous corpses does not show victims of mass murder. What the pictures show is this: During the war extensive delousing and disinfestation measures were taken to combat epidemics, not only in work and concentration camps, but also in many civilian and military installations. The pictures from this sequence show such operations. They have nothing to do with mass murder, and Report did not say that they did, since the commentary accompanying the sequence was not relevant to the pictures. But the simultaneous commentary and photographic sequence would give that impression to the viewer. That way Mr. Rocker was able to cause many viewers to believe that the pictures show something which is the exact opposite of what they really show: that they were proofs of the reality of the Holocaust, whereas they are evidence of the efforts of camp commanders to care for the health of the inmates, which suggests that there was no plan for the annihilation of these persons. Or does one take the trouble to bathe and disinfest people who will later be destroyed? This is how exculpatory evidence is turned into incriminating evidence by this devilish method of manipulation.

The picture with the corpses does not show mass murder victims, which again, Report did not actually say. What it shows is starved victims of typhus as they appeared at the end of the war. Such people could be found all over central Europe at the time. These pictures were mostly taken by the Allies in the freed concentration camps of west and middle Germany. The corpses were not the corpses of victims of planned mass murder.

Schlesiger: Is it your purpose to free the Third Reich from the blame of responsibility for the destruction of the Jews?

Rudolf: I have to tell you, the dignity of this or that sometime dictatorship does not matter to me. In the same broadcast, Prof. Wolfgang Gessenharter of the Bundeswehr-Uni in Hamburg made the same charge. He claims that Revisionism wants to erect an authoritarian state and must therefore clean up the image of the former authoritarian state, the Third Reich. These charges are completely without foundation, even when they are delivered by Prof. Gessenharter with a serious demeanor. I am personally not ideologically close to National Socialism or to any other authoritarian system of government. Let me confess also, that the experiences I have had with the authoritarian behaviour of the German government toward me have completely satisfied my need for authoritarian rule.

What I am interested in is the truth as it can be found through scientific investigation and argumentation, not in politics. When certain people avoid argumentation on the merits, presumably because of lack of counter-arguments, and take refuge in political aspersions, it only shows that they are the ones with the political motive. Their approach does not amount to a scientific engagement with my theses. Therefore, the charge of political instrumentalization of the subject falls on Report and Prof. Gessenharter themselves.

Schlesiger: Report also charges that you and others like you assisted at a seminar given by the Thomas Dehler Foundation, which is close to the FDP. Supposedly there was discussion about Auschwitz as a sanitorium.

Rudolf: Anyone who has a different viewpoint on the Holocaust will be stamped as a right-wing extremist for that reason alone. There is no need for any further evidence. This relieves the self-styled non-extremists from the need to engage in civilized discussion on the different viewpoint, and it enables the suppression of the unheard viewpoint. That is why it means nothing to me to be called a right-wing radical or a right-wing extremist.

The subject of the seminar of the Thomas Dehler Foundation was Revisionism. The well-respected Swiss Revisionist Arthur Vogt was specially invited to describe the Revisionist position. When the former seminar leader Batz later said on television that he did not know that the Switzer would give his own Revisionist viewpoint, that is a lie to protect himself. If he were to admit that he invited the Switzer to present the Revisionist position, he could be considered an accessory to the defamation of the Jews and liable for incitement to race persecution. The Switzer was sentenced, because in our country everyone with the wrong opinion on the Holocaust will be sentenced. Batz had to lie in order not to be convicted, because he had helped to propagate different, forbidden opinions. The scandal is not with the seminar, the scandal is with the thought control dictatorship in this country.

Also, during this seminar no one spoke of “Auschwitz as a sanatorium”. That is a blank lie by Report.

Schlesiger: What effect did the Report broadcast have on your private life?

Rudolf: First, I was surprised at how susceptible even supposedly intelligent people are to manipulation by such broadcasts. Some people I knew were convinced I had published works that were printed in the character style Fraktur, which was somehow reprehensible. That had not been mentioned anywhere in the broadcast. Also, what is reprehensible about Fraktur characters? Others blamed me for having participated in right-wing extremist meetings. They had in mind the seminar given by the Thomas Dehler Foundation, which was certainly not a right-wing extremist meeting put on by the FDP. Now there is a rumor going around that I am the leader of an unknown group called “the Leopards”, who supposedly pursue anti-Semitic goals. I was amazed at how quickly apparently enlightened people see ghosts and how quickly unfounded rumors build from chatter. From a distance it all looks a little bit comic. Many times I could not help laughing at the wide-spread mass hysteria.

Schlesiger: How do you think the public will react to that?

Rudolf: The concoction that was poured over me, consisting of brown-colored political smears, quotation of fragments ripped out of context and manipulative mass suggestion, unquestionably had an effect on uncritical viewers, who are probably at least 80% of the audience. Possibly the remaining 20% were able to think about it a little. That, at least, would be a victory.

Schlesiger: What was the effect on the Revisionist cause?

Rudolf: There could hardly have been better advertising. The demand for anything having to do with my expert report or for Revisionism in general has never been better.

Schlesiger: Report may have shot themselves in the foot then.

Rudolf: It looks like it.

Schlesiger: Do you think that the media will restrain themselves in the future?

Rudolf: At the moment it looks more like a taboo has been broken, opening a new market for sensationalism with which the media can make money. In any case, I get more and more requests for interviews.

Schlesiger: There was an attempt at reputable journalism in the international natural scientific magazine Nature in April. The report concedes throughout that you are a good scientist and does not impute any political motives to you. Are you happy with it?

Rudolf: By and large I have no objections to the article, even though this time Mr. Kammerer was smeared with right-wing extremism. Unfortunately, Mrs. Abbot avoided any discussion of my theses.

Schlesiger: What has happened to the objections of the MPG, that it was not clear that the buildings you studied were the original ones and that the chemical remnants in the delousing chambers could perhaps be explained as due to use of higher concentrations of Prussic acid there as opposed to the supposed gassings for killing.

Rudolf: These objections have been made against the Leuchter Report for 6 years as though there were a prayer-wheel. It was just these points that caused me to decide to undertake to write an expert report. I have handled these very questions thoroughly and I believe I have answered them conclusively. When the MPG trots them out again they only prove that they have either not read my expert report or did not comprehend it. Die Zeit even stooped to amplify the MPG nonsense and, under the title, “Krümel aus Auschwitz” (Crumbs from Auschwitz), they wrote that I thought that the analytic results from the laboratory showed that the Nazis had not used poison. This article about theNature article only shows how journalists copy nonsense from one another and that the stupidity gets worse each time. [21]

Schlesiger: To close: What are your expectations for the near and the distant future?

Rudolf: Let me answer that in two parts. First the optimistic perpective. For 2 years I have been making appeals to prominent persons in the establishment to address the fact that the situation is stuck. I think it is high time that the theses of Holocaust Revisionism are tackled in a competent manner, so that the social tensions that might be brought about by a thoroughgoing revision of history can be alleviated and reduced before they become harmful. I hope that there are enough rational persons in the establishment who will finally take up this task. For the distant future I hope that I can have a normal civil life with the knowledge that the revision of history has been accepted as a normal part of the task of this scientific discipline.

The first perspective is not realistic. Probably the confrontation will intensify in the near future. But the truth has more breath. She might go under, but she will not drown.


Notes

[1] H. Auerbach, Institute for Contemporary History, letter to G. Herzogenrath-Amelung, Az. Au/Be., 21.12.1993.
[10] Cf. sec. 4 of the Law on holding degrees.
[11] Administrative Court Mannheim, Az. IX 1496/79, JZ v. 19 (1981), pp. 661-664.
[12] The interview was conducted before the filing of the charge sheet mentioned in the beginning.
[17] Fax report from the MPG on 12.4.1994.
[18] See, for example, the Südwest Presse, fax on 22.4.1994.
[19] E. Gauss, Vorlesungen über Zeitgeschichte, Grabert, Tübingen 1993, pp. 214ff.
[20] A 1956 play by Max Frisch in which a solid citizen gives hospitality to strangers who eventually destroy his family and burn down his house, an allegorical description of the totalitarian takeover of a society.
[21] Die Zeit, 15.4.1994, p. 44.

Letter by Central Council of Jews in Germany to the Max Planck Society

When my Expert Report on Auschwitz received public attention in early 1993, the Jewish lobby in Germany demanded from my then employer, the Max Planck Society, to take “appropriate measures” in order “to prevent” my activities. Here is that letter.

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Letter by Max Planck Society to the Central Council of Jews in Germany

This is the answer by the Max Planck Society to the demand of the Central Council of Jews in Germany to prevent any further activities of mine.

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Open Letter to the Max Planck Society

In 1993 and again in 1994 my then (later former) employer, the Max Planck Society of Germany, issued a press release about my private research activities on the Holocaust. The text of that statement is revealing and led me to write a quite sarcastic Open Letter to that most honorable of all German research institutions.

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Science Magazine Nature Writes about Rudolf Report

Back in 1993/1994, my Expert Report made quite an impact, although more as a scandal than anything else. Here is one of the world’s leading science periodicals reporting about it.

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