For more than 20 years, Robert Faurisson has been Europe's foremost Holocaust revisionist scholar.
He was born on January 25, 1929, in Shepperton, England. His father was French and his mother was Scottish. As a boy and young man, he attended schools in Singapore, Japan, and in France. He was educated at a Lycée in Paris, and at the renowned Sorbonne. He received his "State Doctorate" in letters and the humanities from the Sorbonne in 1972, where he also taught from 1969 to 1974. From 1974 until 1990, Faurisson was a professor of French literature at the University of Lyon II. He is a recognized specialist of text and document analysis, and is the author of four books on French literature.
After years of private research and study, Dr. Faurisson first made public his skeptical views about the Holocaust extermination story in two items published in December 1978 and January 1979 in the influential Paris daily Le Monde.
In the archives of the Auschwitz State Museum in Poland , Faurisson discovered the technical and architectural drawings of the Auschwitz morgues, the crematories and other installations. He is the first person to publicize these important documents, and to point out their significance.
Since 1978, Dr. Faurisson has presented his critical view of the Holocaust extermination story in numerous articles, in many interviews, in several books, and in stunning April 1979 debate on a Swiss television network with prominent defenders of the "exterminationist" view. Many of his scholarly articles have been published in English in The Journal of Historical Review. A four-volume collection of many of his writings, Écrits Révisionnistes (1974-1998), was published in 1999.
Dr. Faurisson worked closely on the French revisionist quarterly, Annales d'Histoire Revisionniste, during the three years of its existence. He also worked on the successor quarterly, Revue d'Histoire Revisionniste.
A cogent summary of his skeptical view of the “Holocaust” is his lengthy article, “Impact and Future of Holocaust Revisionism,” published in The Journal of Historical Review, Jan.-Feb. 2000. (It is posted online at http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v19/v19n1p-2_Faurisson.html )
Faurisson played an important role in both the 1985 and 1988 “Holocaust trials” in Toronto of Ernst Zundel. His role in those legal battles went far beyond his testimony on the stand as a witness. Especially during the 1985 trial, he spent hundreds of hours -- often working all day and very late into the night -- preparing questions used by defense attorney Doug Christie in his devastating interrogations of Raul Hilberg, Rudolf Vrba and other prosecution witnesses. Faurisson's most important contribution to the defense in the 1988 trial may well have been his key role in securing the participation of Fred Leuchter, an American gas chamber specialist. Faurisson played an important role in arranging for Leuchter's on-site investigation in Poland of supposed extermination gas chambers, and in making public the American’s remarkable findings.
Much about Faurisson’s role in the 1988 “Holocaust trial” in Toronto, Canada, can be found in the 562-page book edited and compiled by Barbara Kulaszka, Did Six Million Really Die?: Report of the Evidence in the Canadian 'False News' Trial of Ernst Zündel.
For years various government agencies and influential organizations have waged a concerted campaign to silence him. He has been obliged to defend himself many times in French courts for his forthright writings and statements. He has had to contend with numerous court convictions.
His bank account has been frozen, and court officials have repeatedly visited his home threatening him and his wife with seizure of their furniture to pay for financial "damages" imposed for his “heretical” remarks. Because of this campaign, his family life has been repeatedly disrupted and thrown into turmoil. His health has suffered terribly.
During an interview in December 1980 with the French radio network "Europe 1," Faurisson summarized the result of his historical research in one sentence of 60 French words. Here is that sentence, in English:
“The alleged Hitlerite gas chambers and the alleged genocide of the Jews constitute one and the same historical lie, which made possible a gigantic financial-political fraud, the principal beneficiaries of which are the State of Israel and international Zionism, and whose principal victims are the German people -- but not their leaders -- and the entire Palestinian people.”
That sentence, he declared 23 years later, “requires no changes.”
For these provocative words, Faurisson was brought to trial on criminal charges of racial defamation and incitement to racial hatred. In July 1981 he was found guilty and given a suspended three month prison sentence, fined several thousand francs, and ordered to pay 3.6 million francs for the cost of making public the verdict on television and in periodicals. However, in June 1982 an appeals court threw out the charge of incitement to racial hatred and eliminated the 3.6 million franc payment.
Among his other legal travails, in June 1995 a Paris court ordered Faurisson to pay a fine of $3,000 for writing Réponse à Jean-Claude Pressac sur le problème des chambres à gaz ("Response to Jean-Claude Pressac on the problem of the gas chambers"), a book that disputes claims of Second World War mass killings in German gas chambers. Henri Roques, another French revisionist, was likewise fined $3,000 by the court for distributing the work. (Roques is also the author of The 'Confessions' of Kurt Gerstein.)
On September 25, 1997, Faurisson came to trial for a statement made in April 1996 about the Garaudy-Abbé Pierre affair in which he mentioned "the imposture of the Nazi gas chambers." During the trial he told the court: "We are only three years away from the year 2000, and there are billions of people who are asked to believe in something they have never seen and don't even know how it worked!" The prosecutor asked for a new kind of sentence: either imprisonment or a fine, to which Faurisson responded by declaring: "I hereby make a commitment that I shall not buy and shall not pay for my freedom. No one has ever bought me and no one will ever buy me."
As expected, the Paris court handed down a guilty verdict. On October 23, 1997, it ordered Faurisson to pay 120,600 francs ($20,000), divided into three parts: 50,000 francs as a fine, 20,600 francs for a Jewish attorney, and 50,000 to pay for the publication of the summary of the court's judgment in two daily newspapers, as well as (unprecedentedly) in the Journal officiel de la République française. Faurisson paid the Jewish lawyer and was paying the fine in installments. However, he did not have to pay to promulgate the court judgment because, he has learned, the anti-revisionist organizations decided that they did not wish to see the publication of the words "the imposture of the Nazi gas chambers."
In December 1997 Faurisson received a summons from a Paris court official for an essay, "The Horned Visions of the Holocaust," that had been posted on a website without his prior knowledge or approval. In this piece Faurisson wrote that "The Holocaust of the Jews is a fiction." He responded to the summons with a stern letter in which he defiantly declared his refusal to "collaborate" with French justice authorities and police in the repression of revisionism.
On March 16, 1998, Faurisson had to appear before a Paris court to stand trial for a short definition of "revisionism," as inaccurately reported in a newspaper.
On April 8, 1998 Faurisson was set to stand trial in Amsterdam for the publication in 1991 in Dutch of his detailed critical analysis of the Anne Frank Diary. (This analysis has been published in various editions, including in the Summer 1982 Journal of Historical Review, under the title “Is the Diary of Anne Frank Genuine?”). The Anne Frank Museum in Amsterdam and the Anne Frank Fonds in Basel, Switzerland, jointly brought the legal action. The Museum complained that it has been obliged to provide special training for its guides to respond to Faurisson's arguments, and that his critique might reduce the number of its visitors.
On October 3, 2006, a Paris court found Faurisson guilty of “Holocaust denial” for having said, during an interview with Iranian television, that “there was never” a single execution gas chamber used by the Germans during World War II. That remark, the court found, was a violation of France’s “Holocaust denial” statute, the 1990 “Gayssot” law that makes it a crime to dispute or contest crimes against humanity, as defined by the joint military commission of the victorious Allied powers that met as a tribunal at Nuremberg 1945-46. After finding that Faurisson’s remark during the interview constituted “complicity in contesting the existence of a crime against humanity,” as determined by the Nuremberg inter-Allied tribunal, the court gave Dr. Faurisson a suspended prison sentence of three months, and fined him 7,500 euros (about $9,500).
For his views Faurisson has repeatedly been a victim of physical assault. Between November 1978 and May 1993 he was a victim of ten attacks, at least nine of them carried out by Jewish thugs. None of the criminal assailants in any of these assaults has ever been brought to justice. The most savage was a nearly fatal attack on September 16, 1989, for which a group calling itself "The Sons of the Memory of the Jews" claimed responsibility.
(For more, see "Jewish Militants: Fifteen Years, and More, of Terrorism in France ,” posted at http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v16/v16n2p-2_Faurisson.html , and The Zionist Terror Network, posted at http://www.ihr.org/books/ztn.html .)