"No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is, therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions." --Thomas Jefferson to John Tyler, 1804.

A Nazi revisionism watch


Protesting Irving in Portland/Indymedia

A little belated with this recommendation, but a highly recommended link regardless: A Boise Weekly story about the visit to downtown Boise (the relatively most liberal section of Boise, by the way) of David Irving, a historian who has come to align with the neo-Nazi movement.

Irving’s approach isn’t that of the Aryan Nations crowd. A description from David Neiwert at Orcinus: Irving “is an academically trained historian, one whose career arc traversed from ‘controversial’ to ‘extremist’ over the course of several years. . . . Even in his early, ‘controversial’ years, careful examination of Irving’s methodology revealed ‘that he omitted important evidence and that he misused, manipulated and even altered documents to support his theory’ (sound familiar?). Eventually, rather than accept the criticism and alter his approach accordingly, Irving defiantly drifted into the murky waters of Holocaust denial . . .”

There were no parades here; this was a quiet tour, evidently organized mainly through a web site. There has been little-noted stops – this was a book-signing and sales tour – around the Northwest, first in Boise on July 15, then in Spokane (July 16), Seattle (July 18), and Portland (July 19). The page notes, “Rights of admission strictly reserved. Use this registration button to get on the list.”

There have been a few online reports of Irving’s latter three stops. A protest developed at his Portland stop but it got little external attention. At Spokane, word gout out by way of Twitter and MySpace.

But the report to read came by way of Nathaniel Hoffman at Boise Weekly. In part, it’s a reflection on the difficulty of properly covering such an event, even deciding what proper coverage is. But there’s a fair amount of useful material here too about Irving and (more to our point) the reactions of people around him. Recommended.

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