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The Rudolf Report
3.2. On Politics
The question of whether or not systematic mass-killings of Jews in homicidal gas chambers, specifically constructed for the purpose of accomplishing their extermination, took place under the National Socialist regime, is apparently viewed as a political issue. Whether or not a moral appraisal of the National Socialist regime depends on the existence or non-existence of gas chambers is disputable. A political evaluation of the Third Reich is not significantly dependent upon this moral evaluation. Since the present discussion contains neither a moral, nor political, evaluation of a long-dead regime, I shall make no moral or political statements. Personally, I am inclined to judge a politician, or political system, on the basis of what he, or it, was able to leave behind for their respective population - everything else follows. That must suffice at this point.
To everyone who has ever suspected that revisionists are motivated by a desire to whitewash National Socialism, or restore the acceptability of rightwing political systems, or assist in a breakthrough of Nationalism, I would like to say the following:
While researching, our highest goal must at all times be to discover how historical events actually occurred—as the 19th century German historian Leopold Ranke maintained. Historians should not place research in the service of making criminal accusations against, for example, Genghis Khan and the Mongol hordes, nor to whitewash any of their wrong-doings. Anybody insisting that research be barred from exonerating Genghis Khan of criminal accusations would be the object of ridicule and would be subject to the suspicion that he was, in fact, acting out of political motives. If this were not so, why would anyone insist that our historical view of Genghis Khan forever be defined solely by Khan’s victims and enemies?
The same reasoning applies to Hitler and the Third Reich. Both revisionists and their adversaries are entitled to their political views. The accusation that revisionists are only interested in exonerating National Socialism and that such an effort is reprehensible or even criminal, is a boomerang: This accusation implies that it is deemed unacceptable to partially exonerate National Socialism historically, and by so doing, always also morally. But by declaring any hypothetical exoneration based on possible facts as unacceptable, one admits openly not to be interested in the quest for the truth, but in incriminating National Socialism historically and morally under any circumstances and at all costs. And the motivation behind this can only be political. Hence, those accusing revisionists of misusing their research for political ends have themselves been proven guilty of exactly this offense. It is therefore not necessarily the revisionists who are guided by political motives -though quite a few of them certainly are- but with absolute certainty all those who accuse others of attempting to somehow historically exonerate a political system which has long since disappeared.
As a consequence, our research must never be concerned with the possible ‘moral’ spin-off effects of our findings in relation to politicians or regimes of the past, but solely with the facts. Anyone who argues the opposite does not understand scientific research and should not presume to condemn others on the basis of authentic research.
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