The “Bad Boy of Holocaust History” blows the lid off Hollywood’s secret right-wing underground
By VT Editors
(Comments below by Ingrid Zundel)
This controversial title is available on Amazon. I read it a few days ago and discussed small parts of it with Ernst. He hasn’t read it yet, and I am curious as to his response after he has read it. For now, he only said: “Since David has done us the favor and outed himself, we can afford to seize the opportunity…”
I assume that most supporters on my list who receive my Power Letter are familiar with the story of a young Jew named David Cole who played a brilliant role in early revisionism. Ernst had befriended him and had taken him protectively under his wings because there were people in the nascent “Revisionist Movement for Truth in History” who instinctively disliked and distrusted David Cole … because he was a Jew.
Ernst felt that David was a genuinely idealistic youngster, barely twenty years of age when they met, enamored with his role as a fiery “free speech advocate” who had started doing useful work in turning over Auschwitz’s shards of history.
Ernst and I had barely met in 1994, and I was still a novice and learning “who was who and what was what.” Ernst told me of his young Jewish friend of his who had been introduced to an alternative view of history by a young Irish revisionist scholar by the name of David McCalden. The latter had been instrumental in founding and promoting the California-based Institute for Historical Review.
One incident, particularly, impressed Ernst as to David Cole’s sincerity and courage, as David Cole told the story. There had been an altercation between McCalden and Irv Rubin, then the head of an American-based terrorist group called the Jewish Defense League where McCalden was viciously beaten and thrown through a plate glass window – and David, still a teenager and slight of build, had heroically come to McCalden’s aid.
It was a vivid, touching story, totally believable, as Ernst recounted it to me – and as David retold it to me in every small detail when I got to meet him a decade or so later. Imagine! A little Jewish kid fighting for a besieged revisionist leader! What a courageous deed!
Well, that was then, and now is now. As David tells it in Republican Party Animal, here is what really happened:
The first time I had to face the possibility of my interest in revisionism becoming public was in 1989. McCalden told me he was going to a debate at a Beverly Hills temple. Irv Rubin, lovable and murderous head of the Jewish Defense league (JDL) was going to debate a Jewish leader who didn’t approve of killing people. I’d seen Rubin on TV slapping around anti-Semites (the guy was built like a golem). It sounded like a fun evening.
Sitting in the rear of the temple where some of my childhood friends had been bar-mizvah’d, I anxiously awaited the invigorating back-and-forth. I saw McCalden enter the temple, quietly, from the lobby. Within five seconds, a half-dozen JDL guys piled on him. They dragged him into the lobby and put his head through a glass-plate window. He was tossed onto the sidewalk. Of course, I immediately stood up and said, “That was uncalled for! This is a house of God!” Well…actually, no. I just sat there in a meek, cowardly silence. The debate went on as planned, but after Rubin told the crowd that the guy he just beat up was a “Nazi,” he won over the audience for the rest of the night.
The next day, McCalden called me. He asked if I saw the fracas. I didn’t call him back.
Then I saw reports on the incident in two local papers. “Neo-Nazi David McCalden burst into a local temple during services and attempted to rip up the Torah, while shouting ‘Heil Hitler!’ Security escorted him out.”
Until I read this second version about two week ago, I still believed the first. I called Ernst and asked him if he had ever heard this version. He said it was all news to him.
David further illustrates his early interaction with McCalden:
I read that McCalden was a militant atheist, an Irish nationalist, and a Holocaust revisionist (the term denier had not yet been coined, so revisionists were called revisionists, even by their foes.) McCalden had co-founded the largest revisionist publishing house in North America, the Institute for Historical Review, in Orange County, California.
I found McCalden’s ideological mix fascinating, Atheist, Irish nationalist, Holocaust revisionist. Racist? Maybe, but he had a non-white wife. And there were rumors that he was a closeted gay. It was a mix I’d yet to encounter as I profiled ideologues. I wrote to him. I asked for some info, some literature. Instead, I got a personal visit. But he didn’t come to proselytize, he came to fight.
He thought I was a ”Jewish infiltrator” trying to cozy up to him for nefarious purposes. He already had that suspicion when he drove to my house, and when he saw the mezuzah on my door, he went totally apeshit. I tried to convince him that I was not working with or for anybody. I just wanted to know what motivated a guy like him.
I must have been convincing, because he believed me. He gave me some literature and took off. And I read it. Incredibly amateur stuff. I took everything and put it aside. I had no interest in revisiting it.
A little sidebar here, McCalden was an intellectual and a truly gifted writer, but it is possible that the revisionist material at that time was still amateurish. Remember, revisionism still barely existed. Only in 1985 and then 1988, after the two Great Holocaust trials, alternately known as the “Ernst Zundel False News Trials” galvanized the movement, was there solid, documented evidence available globally that not all was as claimed in the traditional Holocaust version. David Cole acknowledges this as he describes his progression as a revisionist activist below:
I went back to see McCalden, but just my luck, the poor bastard had upped and died of AIDS after giving it to his wife as well. I guess those gay rumors must have had merit, not that there’s anything wrong with that (well, to be fair, I think the whole “giving AIDS to your wife” thing was pretty wrong.)
McCalden’s social circle consisted of his Holocaust revisionist buddies and his atheist buddies (there was a fair amount of crossover). The atheist guys were a pretty decent bunch – not racist at all. Plus, I used to self-identify as an atheist in my youth, (I don’t anymore), I fit in very well with them.
One of the atheist guys, the man entrusted with dealing with McCalden’s massive collection of books and files (maybe three thousand books, and at least a hundred huge file boxes of papers), decided they should go to someone a bit more rational than some of the well-known names in the revisionist field. (…) So, overnight, I inherited one of the largest libraries of Holocaust books in L.A. And lots and lots of correspondence – almost twenty years worth.
I read through the revisionist literature. It provided no answers, but it left me with several questions. The problem was, mainstream historians would never address revisionist concerns and the revisionists, for the most part, were sloppy and (mostly) ideologically motivated.
I also happened to enter the Holocaust history field at just the right time. Several things were in play. The freedom of travel and research in Poland, not possible during the Cold War years. And the amazingly inept, self-defeating criminal trials of Holocaust denier (yes, denier, not revisionist) Ernst Zundel in Canada, throughout the ‘80s, which made a lot of people who would have otherwise ignored revisionism think twice about the reliability of the Auschwitz story.
Blame Canada! (…)
Here’s what I want to say: As yet, no doctorate in revisionism exists. I don’t know just how one earns one’s laurels as a “revisionist” – but there exists even today not one sole human being on the face of the earth who has done as much as Ernst Zundel responsibly revising history. He and his trials have brought an entire alternative view of history under one hood and given it visibility and authenticity.
I asked Ernst to write me a synopsis of his interaction with David:
In the early 1980s, Canada was still an Anglo-Saxon country adhering to the “majesty of law”. There was still respectful decorum observed in the courtrooms. It was true that I was under siege politically from many quarters even then. For one, the post-war Germans, always willing to demonstrate subservient compliance to please the Allied Powers still ruling Germany, refused to extend my passport, and I was effectively “grounded” in Canada, not being able to travel anywhere. I was in a Siberian Gulag-type situation, besieged by government-initiated criminal prosecutions for what was called “false news”.
I was beaten, spat at, the target of arson and pipe and parcel bombs by terrorists of all stripes, including terror acts initiated by Irv Rubin and his hoodlums – yet I had become increasingly effective with my worldwide information outreach – its main message being that the guilt heaped on the German people for crimes alleged to have happened might not be warranted. I pleaded for a neutral global debate – all facts, such as they were, on the table!
I was sending my monthly newsletter to 43 countries in German and in English. I was broadcasting in both languages via shortwave radio stations from America, various stations in Africa, the Middle East, via Christian missionary shortwave stations in Israel’s South Lebanon-occupied area, and also broadcast eventually from Radio Moscow’s Königsberg/Kaliningrad AM station which could be heard all over Western and Eastern countries, loud and clear, without the usual distortions and customary poor reception of shortwave.
Simultaneously, my supporters and I were rapidly expanding our Public Access outreach on 145 to 160 US TV stations with the help of thousands of volunteers. The Zundel media juggernaut was awesome to behold. This unnerved my detractors to the point that they set up a “flying squad” of Simon Wiesenthal/ADL-like pressure groups who were burning up the telephones to enforce the traditional Holocaust version across the USA by putting pressure on newspaper editors, station managers, advertisers etc.
That’s when David Cole entered the picture.
I had heard from the people at the IHR that a young Jew frequently visited them and borrowed and watched every videotape of the Zundel/Samisdat Publishers productions. Since I could not leave Canada for visits to the US or Europe to lecture, David came to Canada, and we became fast friends. I presented him to the public via lectures, press conferences and private gatherings, making him also available to various political intelligence organizations with whom I had developed friendly working relationships.
Thus, these police and intelligence officials could get first-hand information on what I did, said, and wrote. I always shared our venues with my police and intelligence contacts. I sought out attorney generals, justice ministry officials, and even parliamentarians from various provinces. There was nothing clandestine about my political outreach. This was my standard operating procedure for decades in every country I operated. It paid good dividends for an alternative view of history the public was entitled to hear.
I followed the same procedure with David Cole. When he came to Canada, I toured the country with him. He spoke in packed hotel ballrooms full of cheering crowds of not only Zundel supporters but also the public in general.
I am told that in his recently released book David portrays our outreach in a less than flattering manner. That is his view now, but David Cole knows perfectly well that in his very young years he fully and enthusiastically participated in this outreach campaign for Truth in History. He truly gave it his all. He was young, good-looking, eloquent, well-mannered – no gutter language then! We were on a roll, and he helped to legitimize the image we tried to project – that we were not some low-brow idiots who ran around with swastikas and hated Jews and Blacks. It was a pleasure to work with him in private and in public at the time.
The legal struggle around the Zundel outreach even then was fierce, but I won numerous important court cases in Canada and Germany. I had been banned from the mail – and in an epic public tribunal hearing I won my mailing privileges back. I could once again flood the world with my historical information material.
I also won a court case in Germany against the infamous Paragraph 130. The state had to give me my bank account back. I used that money to go into information overdrive. At the same time, my German attorney, Jürgen Rieger, won an astonishing victory against the German Federal Authorities who were forced by court order to issue me a new passport – “forthwith!”
David Cole and I kept in close touch throughout the 1990s. After my Supreme Court victory in 1992 he told me he was going to Auschwitz and other camps in Poland to make interviews for documentaries for use in the U.S. As fate would have it, David was filming in Auschwitz exactly when I was issued my brand new German passport. I immediately contacted him via phone at the Auschwitz Holiday Inn and flew to Europe at once, meeting him the next day on-site to make interviews with him there in the actual locations – a sensational opportunity!
I took my own cameraman along, and David brought his own “camera woman.” By the time I arrived, David had been there already several days interviewing Polish Auschwitz officials and touring the camps with them. I decided to let David be my “tour guide.” Two documentaries resulted – one in English and one in German. They are still worth their weight in gold.
While still in Europe, I organized several talks and press conferences and meeting with German intelligence officers in Munich and elsewhere.
David was a sensation, lionized by the Germans and even the police and mainstream media when he told them of the many irregularities in the official Holocaust tale. My enemies were shell-shocked by it all! This was in 1989; right after the Berlin Wall fell.
Since I could now travel again, I roamed the world to my heart’s content. I met David several times in the US – where by that time, he himself was under assault quite literally by terrorist and arsonist thugs, and where eventually a US$20,000 fatwa/reward had been offered by the Jewish Defense League’s Irv Rubin for David Cole’s head – “dead or alive.”
Under such dire terrorist threat, David Cole issued his famous “recantation”. During his travails, I kept in constant touch, privately – by telephone, fax, and in clandestine meetings in California, where he was always accompanied by huge, black bodyguards. It looked like the terrorists had won. I myself became the target of abuse and derision all over again because I had worked so closely with this young, brilliant Jew.
It did not take long, and my life took several turns for the worse. I was arrested and expelled from the US to the Gulag in Canada in isolation, treated by the Canadian spy services as a “danger to the security of Canada.” I battled deportation for two years, wearing an orange, Guantanamo style uniform, handcuffs and leg irons.
In my second year of detention, my wife Ingrid told me that David Cole, revisionist Bradley Smith, and some Mexican friend were going to make a documentary about my life. I got permission from prison authorities to be filmed by them – a big surprise to me! – but when the so-called “film crew” arrived, it all fizzled out because they were a sorry bunch of incompetent, lying crooks. The whole unsavory episode is part of David’s book. I haven’t read it yet, but Ingrid has told me enough for me to form an opinion.
How do I feel about this mix of literary brilliance, pornographic sleaze – and truths, half-truths, and brazen, bald-faced lies that leave me simply speechless? I understand he is a serious alcoholic. God only knows what inner devils plague David Cole these days.
As for myself, I feel detached. I am sad for so much talent laid to waste by booze and lack of sexual restraint. I also feel betrayed, because some twenty years ago I thought in all sincerity that David was my friend. But this betrayal does not touch my inner core about what happened then and what is being said today.
How does David Cole view his erstwhile friend and mentor today?
Ernst Zündel was a German who immigrated to Canada in 1958. Zundel loves Hitler. I mean, he really loves Hitler. But, and this is the point I have a hell of a time communicating to people, he loves Hitler because he’s certain, he knows, that sweetie-pie Adolf was framed. That mustached little munchkin couldn’t hurt a fly. Zundel really, sincerely, believes that. He’s nuts, but he’s not dangerous.
With gritted teeth, let me put it this way and leave it at that: Cole certainly is right to say Ernst is not, and never has been, “dangerous” … but would three, possibly four Western governments have conspired to the tune of millions and millions of taxpayers dollars to run down, kidnap and furiously try to silence a “nut”?
David knows better – that’s all that I can say! Whatever else you might think about David, he is a very bright man. He even sheepishly admits he knows what happened to Ernst Zundel as he expands his version in the following few paragraphs:
Zündel’s name would not be known if he hadn’t been subjected to two criminal prosecutions by the Canadian government.
In Europe, if you’re arrested for being a Holocaust revisionist, you can’t mount a defense of “but I’m right.” You can’t use “truth” as your defense. You can’t argue your beliefs in court. Essentially, you can only beg for mercy, plead guilty, or plead insanity.
But every time the Canadians put Zündel on trial, they put no restrictions on his defense. He was allowed to plead “not guilty because I’m right.” And so, throughout the course of his trials his legal team was allowed to grill Holocaust historians, survivors, and “experts” of all kinds.
This is one of those moments in which I fear that I lack the language skills to properly express the completely self-defeating lunacy of what the Canadians did. Their desire was to silence Holocaust revisionism. To do that, they gave Zündel the opportunity to do something that no one else had ever had – the ability to grill historians under penalty of perjury. (…)
In its attempt to silence revisionism, the Canadian government ended up putting it on the f…ing map. Zündel and his exceptionally able and well-funded legal team took the Canadian blunder and ran with it. Thanks to the Canadians, it wasn’t Zundel on trial, but the Holocaust. (…) The story was that the respected experts and the survivors had to make humiliating admissions under oath.
The result of all this tumult was that Holocaust revisionism became “a thing.” In its desire to destroy revisionism, the damn Canucks had put it on the map, with daily breathless headlines in every Canadian paper, carried by wire services around the world. And I thought that as long as revisionism was going to be “a thing”, with or without my participation, the “thing” could probably benefit from having a guy with no ideological fanaticism enter the field to sort the wheat from the chaff and take the wheat out of the hands of people like Zundel.
My reaction? Why, that sneaky little twerp! Image the chutzpah! And marvel at the ease with which a Jewish switcheroo is done. David had a private plan that did not match the image he so carefully projected, and he proceeded to put it to use. He put on his yarmulke and played the Jewish bonus to the hilt, allowing him enormous media leeway not open to serious revisionist scholars.
And he is right in saying that Ernst was not a bean-counting revisionist in the conventional footnoting sense. His role was that of what he himself has called a “radical revisionist” – a street-smart global populist for truth in history, arranging dozens of lectures for David, where David enlightened the masses on the discrepancies of the conventional Holocaust tale, as often as not to thundering audience applause.
David seemed utterly credible then. He wrote sharp, imaginative letters, trouncing the media, pleading with dignitaries on behalf of the revisionist cause. David and Ernst gave joint media interviews. David and Ernst toured the ruins of Auschwitz, together. And, much to his amazement and surprise, the Jewish wunderkind called David Cole became a media star, invited to popular talk shows like 48 Hours, Montel Williams, Morton Downey Jr., and Phil Donahue, to name but a few out of many.
It must have been in 1994, at my very first revisionist convention put on by the Institute for Historical Review where David was one of the speakers, an opportunity for me to observe him first-hand. I came to this scene without the slightest prejudice. I knew of Ernst’s fondness for David, and I was prepared to be duly impressed.
As part of his lecture, which was quite good, David was showing a network media clip – it might have been The Phil Donahue Show – where either the host or the audience took umbrage at Ernst and David touring the Auschwitz in tandem, and where David defends himself thusly:
“Zundel visited Auschwitz. I visited Auschwitz. We met. What was I to do – kick him in the balls?”
And David turned to Ernst, who sat in the back of the room, put on a rueful smile, and said, “Ernst, I’m sorry…” and Ernst replied in his gentle, grandfatherly way: “It’s okay, David. It’s okay.”
That’s not how I felt. I felt nothing but rage at this two-faced little snit shamelessly playing both sides to reap favors from opposite camps. At the break, I sat outside by myself in the hall on a small hotel settee, and David spotted me, plopped himself right next to me and looked at me expectantly. I don’t know if he knew who I was, but by his facial expression I could tell he wanted me to say something to him – maybe a compliment for that off-color comment at his lecture?
When it comes to smutty language, I am the biggest prude on earth, and no apologies. I felt such an instinctive revulsion at his mendacious comment that I could not bring myself to say a single word. Side by side, we sat there for maybe ten minutes, in silence.
I asked Ernst later why he had been so calm with the slick liar on the stage, and Ernst said in his easy-going way: “What do you expect? He is of the tribe. He could not help himself.”
I know a useful fable to illustrate the above – and what followed. A frog and a scorpion sit by a river, trying to get to the other side. The scorpion says to the frog:
“You know I don’t know how to swim. Permit me to ride on your back?”
The frog looks at the scorpion and says: “No way. Why would I do that? You’d only sting me, and both of us would drown.”
“Why would I do a foolish thing like that?” argues the scorpion. “That would not be in my interest.”
That argument makes perfect sense to the frog. “Ok,” he says. “Hop up!”
Predictably, as they both reach the middle of the wildly raging river, the scorpion readies his stinger and rams it into the spine of the frog.
“Why did you do a foolish thing like hat?” screams the frog, struggling against the treacherous current, in vain attempting to rid himself of the scorpion.
Whereof the scorpion replies, as both drown in the currents: “I could not help myself.”
There’s great wisdom in folklore as cultural shorthand, explaining life’s absurdities that cause so much destruction and death. The autobiographical story that David tells in this book is like a mirror image of the fable.
There was great tolerance for David Cole in our ranks in the beginning. In those early Internet years, he was accepted as “one of us” who went along for a dangerous ride because, around us, political censorship was tightening its net – until, to everyone’s surprise and seemingly out of the blue, David recanted his entire involvement in an Open Letter to the JDL, sniveling and groveling, calling himself a “self-hating Jew”, pleading for mercy and whining that he was guilty of the ultimate disgrace – disloyalty to Jews.
We were shocked, naturally, but not really surprised. All of us knew that this letter must have been written with Irv Rubin’s pistol on Cole’s head – who would not have caved in and sobbingly recanted, in his place? We did not hold it against him, knowing what Irv Rubin’s beefy hoodlums might have threatened to do to frighten him out of his wits. We were just grateful for the sterling revisionist work he had done up to then – and no one, to my knowledge, held any serious grudges.
You can still watch the David Cole clips of those years on YouTube – how genuinely sincere they sound. I put many of them there myself on my channel. Millions have watched them by now. Those clips have bought us more good will for our Cause than any of the dry, scholarly papers the IHR and more scholarly inclined revisionists put out.
Murky gossip insisted that David was now on the run, hiding out from an avenging female. We did not know that he had changed his name to David Stein. As far as we knew, he existed underground somewhere for several years, allegedly working for a smutty sitcom television show called Seinfeld, not the kind of program on which we would have wasted our time. There was even some loose talk that he was churning out pro-Holocaust films for ADL’s Abe Foxman. Tsk. Tsk.
David Cole appeared briefly at a beach party in the LA area, probably in 2002. Ernst and I had been married by then, and we attended this private barbeque party together. To everyone’s surprise and genuine delight, there, all of a sudden, was David – looking relaxed and content, as slim and as wiry as ever, an overweight mulatto girl at his side. A lady of the night? She did look coarse and cheap, long purple fingernails and all, but nobody raised an eyebrow. After all, weren’t revisionist bending over backwards, over and over again, avoiding the label of “racist”? That was – still is – the generally expected attitude.
Throughout the pages of Republican Party Animal, David slyly plants insinuations that practically all revisionists on earth are closet ideologues if not boot-stomping Nazis. Not true. On race, revisionists are neutral and accommodating to a fault.
Another little sidebar here that Ernst and I still savor.
It happened at another IHR convention where the famed Jewish investigative journalist, John Sack, was one of the main speakers. There, at breakfast, Sack, Ernst and I were sharing a table, finishing our scrambled eggs, when Anita Wilson, a black revisionist aficionado, well-known and heartily accepted by us all, sashayed up to our table in a revealing summer dress, bent over Ernst, spilled one of her bare breasts right over his nose, and gave that “Nazi Zündel” a slobbering kiss smack on the lips. I said to Ernst, “ … there goes your reputation as a fire breathing racist” and everybody laughed. Anita plucked herself right next to Ernst, put both elbows on the table and leaned aggressively into John Sack: “Now, John, will you explain something to me? Why are you Jews always in everyone’s face?! Why don’t you Jews get a life?!” A scene right for the movies.
Cole opens one of his chapters with the following:
“There are two principles I live by when I decide I want to accomplish something successfully. The first principle is, “just do the f…ing work.” (…) The other principle by which I live is the old saw that “in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.” I find it best to work in fields where I’m surrounded by ninety percent idiots, because I can accomplish more that way.
The field of Holocaust history, as I found it in 1990, and politics, as I found it in 2008, were perfect for me. My one eye beat most of the tin-cup-holding blindies who populated those fields.
I first realized that I was perfectly cut out for the Holocaust revisionism field when I discovered the obvious manhole in the floor of the supposed gas chamber at the Auschwitz main camp. The manhole was typical of an underground or semi-underground air raid shelter. If a cave-in occurred, if the doors were blocked, the manhole was an escape hatch to allow the soldiers in the shelter to make it to safety. I was also the first person to note that the “gas chamber” locks were from the inside, not the outside. Ever since Poland had freed itself from the Soviet yoke, revisionists and non-revisionists had gone there to study the campsite. And no one had ever seen the manhole, or the door lock, as obvious as they were. No one.
I was where I belonged. A one-eyed king.
If you associated with revisionists, you would never be accepted into the “mainstream” camp. But, frankly, there was no choice for an honest researcher but to associate with revisionists. They’d been the ones collecting evidence during the Zündel trials, only a portion of which was actually used. I could read the “mainstream” views in a hundred books. I needed to mix with the revisionists and deniers in order to win their trust. Because they were the ones with vital pieces of evidence.
I earned Zundel’s trust because I was willing to be seen with him publicly. To this day, there are those who say, “but did you have to appear with Zündel in public?” Yeah, I did. I never said anything in support of his views, but I supported his right to be free from prosecution for simply writing a book, and I still do. On that subject, I’d stand with him again today.
Once the revisionists came to trust me, I could start to go to work. It wouldn’t be long before I’d clash with them. But as I said at the beginning of this chapter, I was now able to “just do the f…ing work.”
By the fall of 2004, memories of [a romantic relationship gone sour] had faded, and I decided it was time to go back to L.A. and start working again. El Segundo meant no longer having access to the trains and subways, which meant less self-sufficiency, as my well-known aversion to driving had become much stronger now that I drank. Fortunately, fate was more than willing to step in with a solution.
At just about that time, political disaster had caught up with the Zundels. I will skip the political kidnapping tale since it is known to my readers and freely dispersed and discussed on the Net. By the fall of 2004, after Ernst was dragged in chains to Canada for an alleged “visa overstay”, he had already spent a horrid winter in isolation in an ice-cold cell in the Toronto West Detention Center, a notoriously brutal prison. Throughout the two years Ernst was forced trying to survive in solitary confinement in Toronto, I had every reason to fear that he was in danger of being seriously hurt, maybe even poisoned or brutally killed in his sleep. I was left fending for myself in Tennessee, likewise subjected to a lot of verbal abuse from invisible callers and anonymous Internet writers. I was out of my wits with fear for Ernst’s safety if not his very life. Repeatedly I would get nasty updates about how innovatively the prison guards were trying to break Ernst’s spirit – spitting in his food and maybe even worse, never turning off his light, forbidding him to talk to other inmates, refusing him the telephone for days at a time, strip-searching him hundreds of times, sometimes even after a telephone call to me, stealing his mail, once even calling me to tell me “Sorry to have to tell you, but your husband has died at 11 o’clock in the morning…” For a few minutes, I actually believed it – I was that terrorized. During one telephone call, always monitored, Ernst told me quietly, referring to this non-stop harassment and abuse: “… you don’t know the half of it…” and I don’t know to this day what he meant. I can guess.
I read in an AP wire release that Israel was planning to ask for Ernst’s extradition – and I knew all too well what that meant. I tried to talk to my congressman, Bill Jenkins, who refused to see me until I threatened a hunger strike in front of his door. I tried to engage Senator Corker whose staff was insulting and rude and would not give me the time of the day.
Not one to give up, I flew Bruce Leichty, our US immigration attorney, to Washington to force Corker to familiarize himself with our case – no doing. Despite thousands of dollars spent for this trip, Bruce and I were not allowed inside the senator’s office and had to talk to an underling in the cafeteria.
I tried to ambush the Canadian Consul General in Washington, who likewise did not let me come into his office but sat in the lobby with icy eyes and twitching cheeks, sweat forming on his forehead, as I relayed my woes. He listened, did not say a single word, gave me his card and vanished. To this very day, never a follow-up from any dignitary or representative I approached – for me, it was a time beyond frustration and despair.
Supporters who will read the following might object that I was far too gullible and should have been wise to a Jew who had, for all intents and purposes, abandoned the revisionist cause and was now doing pro-traditional version Holocaust films. It is true I am, in general, a trusting individual. In truth, I never had any doubts to suspect that David might be deceptive and even go so far as to exploiting our desperate situation for his ends.
When Bradley Smith, an old-time revisionist and good buddy, called me and said that plans were being laid in Hollywood, where David Cole had important connections, to get some serious outreach going with a professional documentary about Ernst’s plight, it seemed like a godsend from heaven.
Here David tells his side of the story, introducing his readers to one of his friends:
“I need a car.” Fat Frank was always very direct. I liked that about him. “My car just got booted and impounded, and it’s too much of a junket to excuse what it would cost to get it back. I need a new one.”
With Frank, like me, it was always about playing an angle. Frank again showed his talent for being direct. “If you get me a car, I’ll drive you everywhere you ever need to be. It will be like having a personal chauffer for life.”
Well, I’m not about to pass that up. But I’m also not about to spend a dime of my own money on a guy like Fat Frank. He was a scavenger, still living the life of an illegal alien with no Social Security number who grew up in Vegas learning to get by through begging, borrowing, and stealing. I liked him a lot, but I’d never turn my back on him.
But he had a very sincere desire to make films. He had a good eye for directing, and had already done several films that sold like hotcakes in the rapidly growing bilingual market. And me? What else am I going to do but make films? I was intrigued by the idea of finally churning out a few things that had absolutely nothing to do with the Holocaust. No more “safe” Holocaust films, no more revisionist Holocaust films. It was time to move on and leave the Holocaust behind.
But fate said, “not so fast there, a…hole!” Because truth be told, if I wanted to get Fat Frank a car without spending my own dough, it was time to revisit the revisionist trough.
There was and is no “revisionist trough.” Unlike our political opponents, we have no sponsors with deep pockets. Over the decades, the revisionist outreach has been held afloat with the help of thousands of little old ladies in running shoes and well-meaning old gentlemen with heart of pure gold and overflowing affection for Ernst’s bitter struggle against the greatest of all odds.
These folks have chipped in, again and again – and do to this day. There have been occasional bequests to help revisionists out of tight spots and push the revisionist struggle forward, such as the Leuchter Expedition during the Great Holocaust Trial ’88, but in general the revisionist outreach world-wide has been financed by nickels and dimes. For decades! With tireless persistence!
David explains this scenario:
I’d always stayed in touch with revisionist Bradley Smith, even during my days in exile in El Segundo. I like Bradley. I’ve known him since 1989. I’ll know him until the day one of us dies. We don’t agree on everything, but he’s a lifelong friend. And now here I came, because Fat Frank needed a car.
Bradley informed me that several prominent revisionists – Germar Rudolf, David Irving, and Ernst Zündel (…) were facing lengthy prison sentences for their “crime” of writing about history. Zündel was already in a hellish situation. He had beaten the Canadian government every time it tried to prosecute him, but in 2001 he’d had enough, and retired to the hills of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. He and his wife Ingrid had a house there, and Zündel pretty much limited his duties to tending to his website. Naturally, the Canadian government and its national intelligence agency, CSIS, couldn’t let a miscreant like Zündel get away. Post 9/11, they had new powers to go “full fascist” on him (finally). They slapped what’s known as a “security certificate” on Zündel, which is Canadian-ese for “now we can do whatever the f..k we want to you with no charge or trial.” The U.S. promptly shipped him back to Toronto, and Zündel was stuffed into a six by ten foot cell, 24 hours a day, the lights always on, watched constantly by guards – with no trial, no charges, no sentence.
At the same time, revisionist Germar Rudolf, living in Chicago and married to an American woman with whom he’d fathered a child, was facing deportation to Germany. Indeed, he was the perfect German, so damn anal about paperwork. He’d paid for the best immigration lawyers to make sure everything he did was within the law. But the Germans, anxious to imprison an author in order to prove they’re no longer the type of fascists who imprison authors, were unhappy. They wanted Rudolf back.
Meanwhile, arrogant hot-head historian David Irving was facing trial in Austria for being a revisionist. I was less interested in his case. He goes looking for trouble. Zündel and Rudolf, like me, had tried to flee from it. I sympathized with them a bit more. (…)
But back to Fat Frank and his car. I went to Bradley to see if he could round up some money for a documentary publicizing the Rudolf and Zündel cases. I would work on the film anonymously, and Frank could help me edit. Bradley came through with a nice little wad of cash from his backers. Frank got his car. And I got yet another wonderful bit of unappreciated irony – I was coming to the aid of two legal immigrants (Zündel and Rudolf) in order to buy a car for an illegal immigrant.
I, too, had known Bradley for years. When Bradley told me of the plan to make a documentary to highlight Ernst’s illegal arrest and brutal treatment, I was of course all ears. But was there a screenplay, I wanted to know. Was there at least an outline? If we made a film, where would it play? What media would give us the time of the day?
There are a few things you must know about Bradley. He is the world’s most enthusiastic devotee of pie-in-the-sky projects that always sound so promising – and always fizzle out. Every new strategy, he always believes, is going to put revisionism on the map once and for all, but somehow, these iron-clad ideas for an ultimate revisionist victory have a way of running through his fingers. Yet Bradley is like our perpetual Santa Claus. You cannot even call him on the carpet for his enthusiastic dreams because there are no goodies to be had. Yet nobody really expects any tangible results as long as Bradley keeps needling and needling Abe Foxman and consorts and drives them right up a tree. And because he does not have a mean bone in his body, backers always forgive him, over and over again, and manage to keep im afloat – though just barely.
So I had my doubts about Bradley. Another harebrained scheme? But when Bradley told me that David Cole, with whom he was in touch, who was now rubbing shoulders with influential folks in Hollywood and would be involved incognito, as well as a really cool Mexican producer chap he had already taken in tow, what choice did I have at that point?
I was willing to give it a shot. I said I would fly out to LA and try to meet the trio.
I was having lunch in some outdoor restaurant near Hollywood when David showed up, all radiant smiles. You have to give him that – David knows how to schmaltz and convince a desperate “war widow” at the end of her rope – which is what I had become. David has lots of charisma. He succeeded in something like five minutes to make me put all my reservations aside. I finally knew in my heart what Ernst had always told me – that there was “something special about that kid.” After all, he had known David for years and had worked with him productively for more than a decade. Why would I still harbor some doubts? I had none.
I forgot if it was then or later that I met Frank the alleged producer as well. He looked bloated and seedy, and he wore a girl’s ring in his ear. However, do you look a gift horse in the mouth? I kept my politically incorrect bias to myself about a Mexican who seemed to be on the skids. But I wanted to know, then and later: where was the script or even an outline of the film we were going to make?
There was no script. One thing at a time. A script would come later. For a start, let’s shoot some original footage. This we did, throughout several months, as outlined below.
As an intro, David had given us the grand tour of the studio where the documentary was going to be polished, and now I was really impressed. We went there after hours, and if I remember correctly, David even had the keys. The studio looked professional. David said he had lined up a topnotch editor who knew of Ernst’s plight and was ready and willing to help at no charge. Another hurdle taken before I even knew there was one.
For a start, we did some filming at a Simon Wiesenthal Theme Park, and we filmed ourselves in some private venue discussing the Zundel kidnap situation – how terribly illegal it was. Mark Weber came to that session. Not much came of that footage. Sometime later – maybe this was another trip? – we had a protest demonstration at the Canadian Consulate in Los Angeles, and Frank filmed that one also. As it turned out, that taping was useless as well.
One final attempt to get some good camera work was useful incidentally. It provided us a respectable venue to try to spark some interest in the abduction case of free speech activist Ernst Zündel. Our trio had managed to get “a film crew” booked for a “freedom of speech debate” of sorts at the University of Colorado/Boulder. Such a prestigious venue would have been normally off-limit for us. But we lucked out – the program was launched and completed, despite the timing being most awkward because finals were scheduled that week. We had only some 50-60 people in the auditorium. But still, a victory of sorts. No JDL in sight. No trouble from ADL quarters. But the lighting was poor, and the sound system worse. It was essential another costly, wasted effort.
Enter the “high definition” camera tale. David again:
“Dude,” Frank said one evening,” do you think we can get even more from these revisionists? I mean, we really ought to purchase some heavy-duty equipment. Like one of these expensive HD cameras. I know just the model we need.”
Up to then, we had financed our various outreach attempts on the fly. We didn’t seem to get the project off the ground, however. There still was no script. As far as I knew, there was not a penny of cash in the documentary kitty. I knew we needed at least start-up money to push this project along, and Bradley was broke, and so was Fat Frank, from all I could tell – and I wasn’t sure about David. I gave Bradley some $300 to tide him over some credit card hump, and I gave several postdated checks to Fat Frank who was behind in his rent, as I vaguely recall, in danger of immediate eviction. Our project was about to give up the ghost. An extra fundraising effort was desperately needed.
I compiled a small special list culled from my general supporters, sending out an urgent S.O.S. To my great joy I managed to interest a long-time supporter whom Bradley, David, and I already knew, a wealthy businessman on the West Coast, who generously pledged $5,000.- for our worthy cause.
I announced to our project trio that, at the very least, there was some start-up money I could float that we could use for the high definition camera Frank desperately needed. So far, all I had was a pledge, but I was sure the money would be forthcoming. He was a very wealthy man, and the amount would be peanuts for him – but it meant a great deal of money for us.
I was waiting and waiting for that check. It didn’t come – I wondered if maybe our sponsor had forgotten? I finally gave in and said I would buy that HD camera out of my own supporter funds and lend it to the project – but I did want it back, once the project was finished. It would cost a hefty $3,500.
I don’t know to this day if that camera was actually purchased with the personal check that I sent. What I didn’t know and only found out a year or two later is that the moment Fat Frank and David had heard of the $ 5,000 pledge, they hopped in the car, drove out to visit our wealthy businessman, and pocketed that all-important check.
They didn’t tell me they had done that. It was project money, to be sure, but I was entitled to know, and I would not have sent them the check for the camera in addition, had I known. More than that, as I found out years later, our wealthy mutual friend had asked David just how much it would take to really get down to business and finish that film, and David told him – and I kid you not – they could finish the film for $ 8,000, easy-pie! Don’t laugh. It shows the amateurishness of this bedeviled project. But our mutual wealthy friend sat down and wrote them the check for the requested amounts, and now the trio had loot in their pockets.
I was in Tennessee. They were in California. I was still waiting for the pledge to come through, and I was anxious to nail down the team on just where this project was going – if anywhere at all. I invited those three musketeers to come to Tennessee to sit down with me and map out some talking points and agree on a tentative timeline and budget. Would they do that? We needed a blueprint on paper.
“I sent Bradley and Frank to Pigeon Forge to deal with Ingrid Zundel directly,” writes David. Before their trip, I told Bradley. “never, NEVER let Frank be alone with Ingrid. He WILL try to make a separate deal. He WILL try to get money for himself. Never let him out of your sight.”
“Will do, kid,” Bradley answered. “You can count on me.” He forgot those instructions the moment he left my house.”
Actually, Bradley didn’t tell me to watch out for Fat Frank’s shenanigans. What he did tell me was that David had instructed him “not to mention money” to me under any circumstances – which I thought was very odd. What money? I didn’t know he had already bagged the pledge I had negotiated. It shows you how trusting I was.
I received a call saying that David couldn’t make it for some reason to our get-together in Tennessee, but Bradley and Frank would be there. If my memory serves me right, those two stayed for a couple of days, and we did some additional filming around my home and in my office. In one respect, that visit was useful I finally found out how our documentary was going to be “structured”, content-wise. It was to be a tit-for-tat format between revisionist claims of Holocaust hokum on one side and sterling ADL rebuttals on the other. David had ADL connections, and the ADL slant was going to be our ticket into mass distribution. That was the nifty plan.
At that point, I dug in my heels, and things got very testy between me and the trio. My argument was that I was not going to use supporter money to help finance a platform for the ADL just so they could spew their slime, with us underwriting the so-called “debate. They had never given us the courtesy of a neutral debate venue – so why should we? I said if this was the plan, they should just count me out.
This disagreement stretched over several months and in the end resulted in a rancorous parting, with letters flying back and forth about the costly camera I wanted back and didn’t get – and other grievances we all had managed to store up about each other and this miserably failed attempt to help Ernst get out of his predicament. I have a whole file folder of copies of those letters.
My blood still boils when I think of it all.
And now, believe it or not, here is David, giving his version for our elucidation in light of all of the above that he himself has documented.
Ingrid Zundel did indeed pledge a fat wad of money to my endeavors. And Frank indeed made a separate deal, pledging to use his Mexicanness to help spread revisionism in the (rolling “L”) Latino community, and pledging to use his film directorness to create a “revisionist film festival” in Pigeon Forge. Both promises were, of course, pure bullshit, and discarded the moment he cashed the checks. But with the money I got, I bought all the fancy equipment Frank told me to get. We were now rather well-stocked.
We made a nice, tight little film about Zundel and Rudolf. (…) The final film was good. So good, in fact, that not only Bradley, but Zundel’s wife offered us more money.
That is a brazen, bald-faced lie! I never approved of the film. In fact, I never even saw that film until just a few weeks ago – now more than ten years later!
Some time ago, when I read on the Net that it had played in Mexico, I asked Bradley to send me a copy, and he told me that it wasn’t quite ready for distribution yet. It is called El Gran Tabu – and I assume it is now on the Net. A friend finally sent me a copy. I wouldn’t call it good. I wouldn’t even call it average. You go and see for yourself and let me know what you think. But I am putting this in black as firmly as I can that I never pledged any “fat wad of money” to David to show my “gratitude.” In fact, I never EVER gave David one little red penny directly.
What else can I say? I say this book needs to be read. I have focused on the revisionist part – but that is only one-fourth of the story. The quip of the bikini comes to mind: What it reveals is interesting, but what it conceals is vital! Its value lies at a deeper level. Most of the book deals with what the title suggests – the last 5 years of David’s life so far and the “parties” he organized for people he names by name that will shock you, as will the color photos in the center of the book. I won’t describe them for you. The larger narrative in this book is of no particular interest to us but will be of interest to the Republican hotshots he gathered around himself and the sleazy atmosphere at these parties he hints at. My guess is there will be a lawsuit or two from those quarters.
Before I even read this book, two of our attorneys called me, telling me of its mendacious nature but stating, independently, that the book is an important document of our era, regardless. I agree. I even recommend it for those who can think deep and try to uncover the root of what plagues us. Not in the sense that this account is generally truthful, or candid, or sincere. It is dripping with smut, half-truths and outright lies that leave you speechless for its chutzpah, but if you can put up with that, it has flashes of insight worth pondering for our own good.
In conclusion, I’d like to quote one of my all-time favorite titles, a book I read many years ago and reread several times because it is to beautifully wise. It is a classic, called You Gentiles by Maurice Samuel, a prominent Jew who wrote it in the 1920s.
We are not free to choose and to reject, to play, to construct, to refine. We are a dedicated and enslaved people, predestined to an unchangeable relationship. Freedom at large was not and is not a Jewish ideal. (…) Freedom to do what? (…)
A century of partial tolerance gave us Jews access to your world. In that period the great attempt was made, by advance guards of reconciliation, to bring our two worlds together. It was a century of failure. (…)
We Jews, we, the destroyers, will remain the destroyers forever. Nothing that you will do will meet our needs and demands. (…) Beyond all temporary alliances with this or that faction lies the ultimate split in nature and destiny, the enmity between the Game and God. But those of us who fail to understand that truth will always be found in alliance between your rebellious factions, until disillusionment comes.
I apologize for this article’s length – but it is an important account from our side for you to read in its entirety. Best wishes, and let us not slacken. Not ever!
2014 copyright – Ingrid Zündel