Unless correspondents ask us not to, this Website will post selected letters that it receives and invite open debate.
writes from Southgate, England, Wednesday, March 1,
My name is Stavros Elia and I am an A-Level Student studying History at Southgate School. I study history and must produce an individual assignment, mine is entitled, "Was there a systematic Nazi Plan to exterminate the Jewish race from 1933 and how significant was Hitler in this?"
As you can see, this is something I believe you are an expert in and I would appreciate your rather "controversial" views on the subject as I understand you do not think Hitler was involved in the Holocaust.
Yours is a very interesting question. Normally I reply in these terms:
"As you may be aware I am conducting litigation in the UK against Deborah Lipstadt, which has two consequences:-
(a) my time is under the most severe pressure! (b) I have to be aware that my Website is under closest scrutiny by the enemies of free speech for the purpose of blackening my name when the trial begins..."
However I can reply with an easy conscience, so to speak, as your question is framed so clearly. The simply answer, straight away, is "No, there was not." The next-level answer is however -- and this is important -- "More precisely, there is no archival evidence that there was such a decision."
Having said that, let me impress on you, that your teacher will give you less credit if you just take one view and refuse to accept that there are others. There are two sides to most questions, and that includes this. If you want to hear the diametrically opposed view, which ignores much of the distasteful archival evidence, then check out the "other side's" Website, which is www.nizkor.com. (or www.nizkor.org, I forget).
However, you have landed with me, and I presume you can access my Website (www.fpp.co.uk) although, characteristically, the nizkor people and the people paying them are devoting much effort to getting filters installed in school and college computers, which will prevent their students from accessing these files. I wonder why...?
Easy route: check out these URLs, probably just by clicking on them: http://www.fpp.co.uk/Auschwitz/docs/Vicksell.html. This is a letter which I wrote in 1994 to somebody asking much the same questions. You will find I have compiled an index of useful stuff on Auschwitz, at http://www.fpp.co.uk/Auschwitz/index.html. Unlike most of the other historians, I spent twenty years discussing these matters with Hitler's private staff. I won their most intimate confidence. (I am hoping to persuade at least one of them to come to London to testify in the libel actions. It will be interesting to see a learned judge hearing what went on inside Hitler's headquarters, from one of the last living witnesses. I have great confidence in the abilities of our judges to perceive the truth.) All of them assured me such matters were never discussed at any time by Hitler, or in his presence. The American interrogators got the same response, using rather cruder methods.
For the last fifty years my opponents have scrabbled frantically through the world's archives looking for even one scrap of paper to prove me wrong (I have offered a $1,000 reward since 1977!), and failed.
You might also check the main alphabetical index on my Website, at http://www.fpp.co.uk/mainindex.html and you should certainly look at these two URLs:
and follow the hyperlinks contained in those pages. Having done which, you must turn to my opponents, and see what they have to say. Try Christopher Browning's books which are probably in your library and read the critique we have just posted at
For an excellent book on the building and purposes of Auschwitz, have a look at Robert Jan van Pelt's recent book, Auschwitz, 1270 to the Present and then read my critique of it at
to which he has not responded. This material should set you thinking. You have my permission to download and print and copy what you want, including the images and documents. Best of luck, and please keep me posted...