- Report about the Zundel Hearing October 4, 2006 -
- Up-front, please let me apologize for not using correct
trial vocabulary since court protocol is very different in Germany from
hearings on this continent. Also, since trial transcripts are verboten,
what little information I get is second-hand and, of necessity, subjective.
With this report, I am doing the best that I can.
- I was told that this October 4 hearing was going to be
a brief, insignificant session of a couple of hours only, dealing with
administrative matters. Dr. Schaller, one of the defense attorneys who
had submitted a detailed summary September 29 of the geopolitical significance
of Zundel's lifelong quest for truth - " - to get to the bottom of
what the heck happened at Auschwitz", as Ernst himself put it in his
documentary DVD - was not going to be at this hearing, since he has to
travel from Austria, an eight-hour trip each way. I did not even announce
the date on the Internet, since I did not want Zundel supporters travel
long distances at great expense and inconvenience to them, only to be disappointed.
- As it turned out, this hearing was one of the most significant
and dramatic events as yet that played in the courtroom in Mannheim. It
seems that the prosecution, with Judge Meinerzhagen as its designated bottleneck,
dropped all pretenses in near riotous outbursts that can only be described
as bizarre, hysterical panic to keep the historical truth from coming uncorked!
- Prior to this hearing, Defense Attorney Rieger had submitted
a number of extensive "requests" to the court - pardon the imprecise
term - asking in clear language that forensic and documentary evidence
be allowed, as well as the testimony of prominent expert witnesses. I
will not go into the details because the copies that I saw were in German
and it is too complicated to give you a feel for what these papers summarized,
other than to say that this was the first time, to my knowledge, that the
defense dropped all hesitation and went on the offensive in a forceful
and decisive way - a courageous strategy indeed in the wake of explicit
threats to them to be charged with the same "offense" as Ernst
Zundel. After all, the court intoned over and over, the Holocaust could
not be anything but "self-evident" and should not, could not,
and would not be put to the test!
- Specifically, in reference to expert witnesses, the Zundel
defense team had requested that both the President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad,
as well as Hugo Chavez, President of Venezuela, be permitted to testify
as to the harmful consequences of keeping the world in the dark by pretending
the Holocaust was what it purported to be - a "fact of history"
- now contested by this obstreperous Swabian in Mannheim. Several other
potential expert witnesses' names were submitted who would shed light where
darkness reigned, among them Fred Leuchter, the chief investigator of the
dreaded "gas chambers" of Auschwitz and other major Third Reich
concentration camps. One of the interesting and unknown items, for me,
was a document listed that showed that Jewish factions had aborted an investigation
years ago that would have more precisely determined the number of "Holocaust"
victims. Another document that Attorney Rieger had either submitted previously
or tried to submit at this hearing was an Open Letter by the Iranian President
to Germany's Chancellor, Angela Merkel, in which the Iranian head of state
shamed the German government for imprisoning Holocaust researchers in order
to prevent the truth from coming out. Ahmadinejad is reported to have
said, according to an interview in Germany's Der Spiegel in May of this
- "The extortion and blackmail continue, and people
are not allowed to think about or even question the source of this extortion,
otherwise they face imprisonment. When will this situation end? Sixty years,
one hundred years or one thousand years, when?"
- I have read President Ahmadinejad's letter in both German
and English translations - it is widely available on the Net and, naturally,
on the Zundelsite (www.zundelsite.org) - but to my knowledge it was utterly
stonewalled by Germany's mainstream press, and Chancellor Merkel had called
it a "scandalous" letter she would, of course, ignore!
- One of the most dramatic moments in this hearing came
when Ernst Zundel decided to break his self-imposed silence and let them
have it, Zundel-fashion, for the first time in more than 18 months. I
never understood and was never given an adequate explanation of why he
chose to remain silent for so long, but I utterly trust Ernst's political
judgment - he must have had his reasons. This day, it seems, he had his
fill - he stood up, dug in his heels, accused the court of shamelessly
running a secret political show trial where only written submissions were
allowed, to be read by the court at the exclusion of both public and press,
and proceeded to read President Ahmadinejad's Open Letter right into Judge
Meinerzhagen's horrified ears!
- At that point, pandemonium!
- Judge Meinerzhagen simply lost it - and started to scream,
his hands shaking and his face distorted with fury, that this was an "impertinence"
- in German, "eine Frechheit!" - that the defense was trying
to pull the wool over his eyes by making the defendant the messenger of
what, precisely, he had forbidden the attorneys to submit at risk of their
own welfare! It seems that the verbal confrontation that ensued was the
Mother of all Shouting Matches - it even worried the armed police at one
point! Apparently it looked like it would come to blows!
- Folks, please take this as an incomplete report that
I am writing in the middle of the night, a continent away. I look at this
newest twist in the dramatic Zundel Saga with both dread and elation.
I will not even attempt to interpret what all this could possibly mean
- let's simply say that finally it looks to me as though the German government,
on its knees before Zion for more than sixty years, has lost its grip before
the precipice and broadcast its own terror - of the inexorable Power of