Thursday, December 08, 2005

Holocaust denial

From today:
  "Historians say six million Jews were killed in the Nazi Holocaust."[1]

Uh, excuse me... 'historians' say that??? Did I miss a meeting or something? When did the holocaust become a point of debate? Why is it that news agencies of late seem to think that anytime a quack stands up with some ignorant opinion on history, science, etc. the subject in question is suddenly no longer a fact?

The article referred to here discusses Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's latest comments where he denies the holocaust and proposes the (logistically trivial and only slightly racist) idea of moving Israel to a different continent. His comments don't really offend me, what more would I expect from a man with first-hand experience in taking and holding hostages [2].

What really irks me is that CNN has the gall to run with it and suddenly feel the need to qualify their holocaust remark with "historians say". I know, I know, it's only two words in an entire article that I'm complaining about, but these two words are significant. Adding these words gives every person out there that is less educated on the subject the idea that there is some sort of legitimate controversy here.

It probably would not be worth my time to write about it except for the fact that I have seen far more of this style of reporting in recent years. News organizations should always ensure that they qualify all of their stories with real data when they cover a controversial subject, but there is a difference between fact and allegation.
  • It is alleged that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was one of the hostage takers in 1979.

  • It is fact that 6 million jews were killed in the holocaust.

[1] -
[2] -


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