Why do people deny the Holocaust happened in history?
It is offensive. It is not only offensive to the millions of lives who perished, but also disrespectful to the soldiers who died trying to end the Nazi regime. When there is so much evidence PLUS a trial in which the actual Nazis admitted to doing it,there is no reason to deny it.
- LeKat!Lv 65 years agoFavorite Answer
Nazi policy did a great deal to facilitate denial of the Holocaust even as the killing operation unfolded across German-occupied Europe during World War II.
The Holocaust was a state secret in Nazi Germany. The Germans wrote down as little as possible. Most of the killing orders were verbal, particularly at the highest levels. Hitler's order to kill Jews was issued only on a need-to-know basis. The Nazi leaders generally avoided detailed planning of killing operations, preferring to proceed in a systematic but often improvised manner. The Germans destroyed most documentation that did exist before the end of the war. The documents that survived and related directly to the killing program were virtually all classified and stamped “Geheime Reichssache” (Top Secret), requiring special handling and destruction to prevent capture by the enemy. Heinrich Himmler, Reich Leader of the SS and Chief of the German Police, said in a secret speech to SS generals in Posen in 1943 that the mass murder of the European Jews was a secret, never to be recorded.
While some people today are misled as a result of the Nazi policies described above into doubting the reality of the Holocaust, others deny the Holocaust for more overtly racist, political, or strategic reasons. These deniers begin with the premise that the Holocaust did not happen. This premise suits their broader purposes. They deny the Holocaust as an article of faith and no amount of rational argumentation can dissuade them. This denial is irrational, largely unrelated either to the facts of the history or to the enormity of the event. Some people deny the Holocaust because of innate antisemitism, irrational hated of Jews.
In fact, Holocaust denial has been called by some scholars the “new antisemitism” for it recycles many of the elements of pre-1945 antisemitism in a post-World War II context. Holocaust deniers argue that reports of the Holocaust are really part of a vast shadowy plot to make the white, western world feel guilty and to advance the interest of Jews. Even at the time of the Holocaust, some people in the United States thought reports of German massacres of Jewish civilians were actually propaganda reports designed to force the government to grant Jews special treatment and consideration.
Many people who deny the Holocaust argue that the supposed “hoax” served above all the interests of the State of Israel. Holocaust denial is, for these people, also an attack on the legitimacy of the State of Israel. Finally, others deny the Holocaust because they want to see a resurgence of Nazi racism. They insist that Nazism was a good political philosophy and that only “negative” press resulting from reports of the genocide the Nazis perpetrated prevent a revival of the Nazi movement today. They deny the Holocaust so that they can attract followers to a new Nazi movement.
Holocaust denial, then, unites a broad range of radical right-wing hate groups in the United States and elsewhere, ranging from Ku Klux Klan segregationists to skinheads seeking to revive Nazism to radical Muslim activists seeking to destroy Israel.
Holocaust deniers want to debate the very existence of the Holocaust as a historical event. They want above all to be seen as legitimate scholars arguing a historical point. They crave attention, a public platform to air what they refer to as “the other side of the issue.” Because legitimate scholars do not doubt that the Holocaust happened, such assertions play no role in historical debates. Although deniers insist that the idea of the Holocaust as myth is a reasonable topic of debate, it is clear, in light of the overwhelming weight of evidence that the Holocaust happened, that the debate the deniers proffer is more about antisemitism and hate politics than it is about history.