No Smoking Gun, No Silver Bullets:
The Real News of Rosenberg’s Diary
Richard A. Widmann
In June of 2013, the media was buzzing with the announcement of the discovery of the diary of Alfred Rosenberg by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). Initial reports announced that the diary “could offer new insights into the Holocaust.”1 News conferences were held with officials from the Department of Homeland Security, the Justice Department and the US Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM). In a Web posting, the USHMM declared:
“Its discovery will undoubtedly give scholars new insight into the politics of Nazi leaders and fulfills a museum commitment to uncover evidence from perpetrators of the Holocaust.”
The Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz spewed considerable venom at Rosenberg calling him “a pretentious fool” and “grotesque.” But Ha’aretz too anticipated major revelations regarding the Holocaust in the diary. They conjectured,
“Indeed, it was Rosenberg who may have planted some of the seeds that ultimately grew into Hitler’s seemingly irrational decisions to divert much-needed German war resources to murdering Jews, even as the German army was sustaining losses at the front.”2
By December, the media was once again flooded with news regarding Rosenberg and his diary. The diary had now been turned over to the USHMM. The UK-based Mail On-line featured the headline: “400 pages written by Alfred Rosenberg, a senior Nazi who played a central role in the extermination of millions of Jews, given to DC museum.”3 News coverage from around the world was basically the same. Interestingly, coverage by The Washington Post included several comments that should have been the headlines and real news story:
“…details of the Nazis’ grand plans for genocide and brutal domination are absent from the pages.”4
The Post goes on to report that Jürgen Matthäus, director of applied research at the USHMM’s Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies commented, “[Rosenberg] saw no reason to elaborate on fundamental Nazi goals, as he regarded them as self-evident.” 5 Matthäus continued:
“If you are looking for shattering revelations about the Nazi era, you’re not going to find them. His diary often seems muted, if not silent, on crucial topics and important events, including the persecution of Jews.”
Finally Matthäus concluded, “this is not the smoking gun. This is not the silver bullet.”
But what “smoking gun?” Why was the Museum in need of a “silver bullet?” What or who was the werewolf they were looking to slay? To the uninformed, the questions remained unanswered. But to the attentive reader, the questions reveal a bit of the disappointment and ongoing frustration of the keepers of the ‘official’ story.
Bundesarchiv, Bild 146-1969-067-01 / CC-BY-SA [CC-BY-SA-3.0-de (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/deed.en)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons.
Wikipedia defines the term “smoking gun” as “primarily, a reference to an object or fact that serves as conclusive evidence of a crime or similar act.”6 Is this an acknowledgement that conclusive evidence of the Holocaust is lacking? The public perception, brought on by years of assertions from various outlets that the Holocaust is the most thoroughly documented crime in the history of the world is demonstrably false. Professor Arno Mayer of Princeton acknowledged that, “sources for the study of the gas chambers are at once rare and unreliable.”7
But how could an orchestrated program for the murder of millions be carried out without orders, without plans, without documents, without even private comments? Was there not only a grand conspiracy to exterminate the Jews of Europe, but also an even grander conspiracy to cover up the crime? Or, like all grand conspiracies, is the myth of the Holocaust built on delusions, revenge, propaganda, and even lies?
It appears that the “smoking gun” would have been conclusive evidence, a comment, or at least an acknowledgement of an order for the extermination of the Jews by Hitler or any member of the National Socialist leadership.8 Unlike the general public, historians and officials at the USHMM understand that not only is such an order missing, the private papers, diaries, and other documents left by those present nowhere confirm a coordinated program for mass extermination.9
And what of the “silver bullet” that the Museum hoped to find? In folklore, a silver bullet is often the only weapon that is effective against a werewolf or other monsters.10 There can be little doubt that even a shred of evidence would have been used as a “silver bullet” targeted directly at the heart of Holocaust revisionists and those who question the gas chamber story, the foundation upon which the USHMM is built.
One should accept the basic logic of the USHMM and others who expected to find a “smoking gun.” Had there actually been a program to exterminate the Jews of Europe, Alfred Rosenberg should have commented on this in his diary. Had Rosenberg commented on a program of mass extermination, the Holocaust revisionist werewolf could finally be eradicated, removing the greatest challenge to the orthodoxy upon which the Holocaust faith and the USHMM is built.11
News stories referred to Rosenberg as “an elite Nazi leader who had the ear of Adolf Hitler,”12 a “Hitler Aide,”13 an “influential Nazi,”14 and a “Hitler Confidant.”15 But who was Alfred Rosenberg and why should he have known of the Holocaust?
Rosenberg, who was born on 12 January 1893 at Reval in Estonia, is best remembered as the author of Der Mythus des 20. Jahrhunderts (The Myth of the Twentieth Century), a work that provided National Socialism with a definitive theory of history as a function of race.16 Rosenberg became an early member of the NSDAP, having joined the party in 1919. By 1921, he assumed the role of editor of the party newspaper, the Völkischer Beobachter.17
Rosenberg oversaw many party activities while Hitler and Hess were in prison at Landsberg in 1924. Over time, he became the head of the foreign policy office of the party. He was also responsible for defining party policy with regard to secondary and higher education.18
Rosenberg led a special staff with the responsibility for collecting and safeguarding the art treasures of the occupied Eastern territories. By 1941, Rosenberg had taken on responsibility for setting up the civil administration of the occupied Russian and Baltic territories and served as Reichsminister für die besetzten Ostgebiete (Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories).19
After the war’s end, Rosenberg would find himself dragged before the Nuremberg tribunal to stand trial. When the Allied judgment came down, Rosenberg was found guilty of all four counts of the indictment, namely: 1) Conspiracy to commit crimes alleged in other counts; 2) Crimes against peace; 3) War Crimes; 4) Crimes against humanity.20
Part of the judgment against Rosenberg reads:
“Rosenberg bears a major responsibility for the formulation and execution of occupation policies in the Occupied Eastern Territories. He was informed by Hitler on April 2, 1941, of the coming attack against the Soviet Union, and he agreed to help in the capacity of ‘Political Advisor.’ …On July 17, 1941, Hitler appointed Rosenberg Reich Minister for the Eastern Occupied Territories, and publicly charged him with responsibility for civil administration… He helped to formulate the policies of Germanization, exploitation, forced labor, extermination of Jews and opponents of Nazi rule, and he set up administration which carried them out… His directives provided for the segregation of Jews, ultimately in Ghettos. His subordinates engaged in mass killings of Jews, and his civil administrators considered that cleansing the Eastern Occupied Territories of Jews was necessary.”21
Rosenberg was sentenced to hang.
It is little surprise that the discovery of the diary of Rosenberg, which had been missing since the Nuremberg trials, excited staunch believers in the official Holocaust narrative. In fact, had the Holocaust occurred as generally understood and as relayed through many books, films, and museums, the Rosenberg Diary should have contained a wealth of horrifying discoveries. One might have even expected a philosophical defense of the policies that led to mass extermination.
But the diary contains no such evidence. There is no justification of brutal policies; in fact, there is no mention of an order for extermination. There is no mention of gas chambers. There is no suggestion that Rosenberg was even aware of such policies. Grand conspiracists would suggest that Rosenberg was so clever that he purposefully refrained from making incriminating remarks in his personal diary – even at a time when he would have expected nothing less than a complete National Socialist victory. Several writers and psychologists like to write of the “banality” of evil, assuming that the matters appeared so trivial that there was no need to mention them. Of course, the third option is that the events never actually occurred as recorded in our history books.
G.M. Gilbert, who served as the prison psychologist at the Nuremberg Trials, captured many of the thoughts and private comments of the defendants. Gilbert commented that the defendants “were more than eager to express themselves to a psychologist and the only American officer on the prison staff who could speak German.” Gilbert was careful to never take notes in front of the men but would rather record them secretly following his private interviews.22 He would later collect his notes and publish them in his book Nuremberg Diary in 1961.
From Gilbert’s book we learn of Rosenberg’s first thoughts and comments after being shown atrocity films during the Nuremberg proceedings. Gilbert recorded the reaction of Rosenberg to “recent revelations” as follows:
“Of course, it’s terrible – incomprehensible, the whole business. – I would never have dreamed it would take such a turn – I don’t know. – Terrible!”23
And later during one of Gilbert’s private interviews:
“I don’t know. I guess it just ran away with him [Hitler]. – We didn’t contemplate killing anybody in the beginning; I can assure you of that. I always advocated a peaceful solution. I held a speech before 10,000 people which was later printed and distributed widely, advocating a peaceful solution. – Just taking the Jews out of their influential positions, that’s all. Like instead of having 90 per cent of the doctors in Berlin Jewish, reducing them to 30 per cent, or something like that – which would have been a liberal quota even then. – I had no idea that it would lead to such horrible things as mass murder. We only wanted to solve the Jewish problem peacefully. We even let 50,000 Jewish intellectuals get across the border.”24
Rosenberg continued on the idea of Jewish deportation:
“Well, I knew they were being transported to the East, and understood that they were being set up in camps with their own administration, and eventually would settle somewhere in the East. – I don’t know. – I had no idea that it would lead to extermination in any literal sense. We just wanted to take them out of German political life.”25
While the USHMM was unable to find a “smoking gun” that supports the orthodox narrative, researchers should examine the documents for evidence of the truth of the events of these years. What does the diary reveal, if anything, about programs of mass deportation? What does it say about the epidemics that ran through the camps? Is there evidence that the National Socialist leadership sought to fight such epidemics? What evidence in the diary actually upholds the revisionist position?
I for one expect that honest inquiry would lead to the rightful revision of this dark time in our recent history. And only by correcting the mythology of this time can we move forward to understand the events of our modern history of the past 70 years. Perhaps a “silver bullet” may still be found in the diary’s pages—a bullet that can be aimed at the hateful conspiracy theory that today goes by the name “Holocaust.”
1 Nichelle Polston and Associated Press, “Nazi criminal’s diaries could offer new insight into Holocaust.” Newsworks. Online: http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/local/item/56047
2 Chemi Shalev, “World awaits diary of ‘grotesque fool’ and Nazi ideologue Alfred Rosenberg,” Ha’aretz, Jun. 12, 2013. Online: http://www.haaretz.com/blogs/west-of-eden/.premium-1.529424
7 Arno J. Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken? The Final Solution in History (New York: Pantheon Books, 1990), p.362.
8 Professor Arno Mayer admitted in his Why Did the Heavens Not Darken? that “no written orders for gassing have turned up thus far.” (p. 362). See also my essay, “Der unbefohlene Völkermord” in Vierteljahreshefte für freie Geschichtsforschung 1 Jahrgang, Heft 2, Juni 1997.
9 The famous Himmler speech has often been cited to show a plan for extermination, but the words are not precise. He could easily be talking about a program of forced deportation. See Carlos Porter’s translation of “Heinrich Himmler’s Posen Speech from 04.10.1943” online: http://codoh.com/library/document/891. Likewise, there are a few suspicious comments in the diaries of Joseph Goebbels, but their meaning is ambiguous. See: Thomas Dalton, “Goebbels on the Jews, Part 1,” Inconvenient History Vol. 2, No. 1 Spring 2010. Online: http://inconvenienthistory.com/archive/2010/volume_2/number_1/goebbels_on_the_jews.php.
11 One could go even further and assert that the Western World Order since 1946 has been founded upon the myth of the Holocaust. See my, “The Holocaust: The New Founding Myth of American Society, Smith’s Report No. 145, December 2007. Online: http://codoh.com/library/document/90
16 Alfred Rosenberg, (trans. Vivian Bird) The Myth of the Twentieth Century: An Evaluation of the Spiritual-Intellectual Confrontations of Our Age, (Newport Beach, Calif.: The Noontide Press, 1993), p. xiii.
17 Rosenberg, p. xxi.
20 G.M. Gilbert, Nuremberg Diary (New York: Signet Books, 1961), p. 398.
21 Ibid, p. 402.
22 Ibid, pp. 9-10.
23 Ibid, p. 70.
24 Ibid, pp. 70-71.
25 Ibid, p. 71.
Alfred Rosenberg in Translation
Contemporary society in decline, the sudden, massive implosion of Western civilization, the biological extermination of the white race—the entire collective phenomenon—has many bizarre facets.
Reason and empiricism have been banished, outlawed by governments or suppressed by dominant cultural elites and institutions in a manner essentially replicative of Communism. Bizarre fantasies and cult beliefs of the most primitive sort reign in their stead.
In particular, the history of Germany, 1933–1945, has been subsumed to the needs of a bizarre new religious cult. Its elaborate mythology, in which Jews crucified at Auschwitz supplant Jesus Christ, their lives sacrificed not for the salvation of mankind, but to justify the physical extermination of the white race (Evil, the Devil) and the deification and elevation of Jews over all other peoples on Earth, was constructed and imposed during the lifetimes of people who actually lived through the historical events, proving the supremacy of collective social constructions, even false ones, over the limited personal experiences of individuals. Surprised National Socialists formally accused of genocide universally responded with half-belief: “This is the first I’ve heard of it!”
The central problem for honest individuals seeking an understanding of the Germany of that era is the recovery of historical truth, the discovery of what actually happened. This is not easy, and requires a desire and ability to crawl out from beneath the now-massive rubble of religious dogma that crushes the life out of us all.
And yet, the truth about Germany is vital, more important for us to discover, explore, understand, and embrace, than is the truth about any other segment of white history that has been grotesquely twisted and distorted by our enemies. For it is the only place where whites, under modern conditions essentially identical to our own, have demonstrated unequivocally that they do possess a latent capacity to think and act effectively in their own interests, to preserve themselves as a race and civilization, to burst asunder the shackles of those who hate them and are determined to destroy them utterly.
Nevertheless, the obstacles blocking the way of adventurous intellectual heretics are many.
A major one is the language barrier that has long divided the European peoples. It is one factor that has conned white Americans or Englishmen into believing that Jews and blacks are their fellow countrymen, while Germans are “evil Huns” or some other bizarre form of stranger.
Even German Americans only one or two generations removed from their European roots fought to the death against the evil Huns, or for unconditional surrender: General John J. Pershing, WWI flying ace Eddie Rickenbacker, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, General Carl Spaatz, Admiral Chester Nimitz, General Albert Wedemeyer, WWII fighter pilot Chuck Yeager, Republican presidential candidate Wendell Willkie—not to mention scores of officers and soldiers in the ranks.
Language, as a major psychological determinant of identity, played no small role in this.
When important books or documents in German are unavailable or not readily accessible in translation, then the facts, ideas, and information they contain effectively do not exist for non-German speakers of every European nationality.
Thirty years ago Alfred Rosenberg was widely referred to as the Nazis’ chief ideologist. You don’t hear that description much anymore, but back then it was common. Of course, he was invariably belittled.
Rosenberg, a Baltic German from Estonia who was hanged at Nuremberg in 1946, studied architecture at the Riga Polytechnical Institute and received his Ph.D. in engineering at the Moscow Highest Technical School in 1917. He developed a fierce hatred for Communism, which he experienced first hand after November 1917. Arriving in Munich as a penniless refugee in 1919, his German was initially poor and highly accented. He was looked upon by some in top NS circles as a foreigner, an outsider; they gossiped about nonexistent Mongolian or Jewish ancestry—a fate also suffered by Freikorps activist, author, and Third Reich screenwriter Ernst von Salomon because of his Jewish-sounding name.
A member of the völkisch and occult Thule Society, Rosenberg in 1941 was named Reichsminister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, in which capacity he established a think tank for the study of “Judaism without Jews.”
In the 1970s, as now, Nazis were the great bugbear of the ruling class and its academic priesthood.
As an inquisitive student of political science and history, I was much interested in reading Rosenberg’s masterwork The Myth of the Twentieth Century (Der Mythus des zwanzigsten Jahrhunderts) (1930), a kind of sequel to Houston Stewart Chamberlain’s classic bestseller The Foundations of the Nineteenth Century (Die Grundlagen des neunzehnten Jahrhunderts) (1899). By 1936 Rosenberg’s book had sold more than half a million copies, and by 1944 more than a million. What better way to assess the unique evil of Nazism?
Heavy-handed hate speech and other Communist-inspired limitations on intellectual freedom had not yet been imposed. And volumes of the complete works of Marx, Lenin, and even Stalin graced the university’s bookshelves—I’d looked into them.
So imagine my surprise—and I was surprised!—at discovering that neither The Myth of the Twentieth Century nor any other work by Rosenberg was available in English translation. That seemed incomprehensible to me, completely anomalous. The simple absence of any work by Rosenberg in translation made a lasting impression upon me.
There existed in English at the time only one book: a slender, edited collection of excerpts from the Myth and a few other works called Alfred Rosenberg, Race and Race History and Other Essays, edited and introduced by Robert Pois (1970).
The book was part of a series, Roots of the Right, whose general editor was the chauvinist Jew George Steiner. At the time I was clueless about Jews, so his name meant nothing to me.
In his brief Editor’s Preface, Steiner wrote that “Reliable estimates put at about seventy million the figure of those dead through war, revolution and famine in Europe and Russia between 1914 and 1945.”
It is clear from the context that the author was loosely tallying the total number of victims of both Communism and Nazism.
But his series was not about Communism, nor did Steiner so much as mention the word Communist or the name of a single Communist in his preface. Instead, everything was Fascism, Nazism, the Falange, Gobineau, de Maistre, Maurras, Primo de Rivera, France, Germany, Italy, Spain. Steiner deliberately and falsely conveyed the impression to his readers that the 70 million dead were murdered solely by the Right with its “often lunatic and nakedly barbaric” vision.
Steiner continued, “The most ‘radical’ attack—’radical’ in that it demands a total revaluation of man’s place in society and of the status of the different races in the general scheme of power and human dignity—has come from the Right.” And because the political and philosophical program of the Right “has come so near to destroying our civilization and is so still alive, it must be studied.” Hence the reason for his series.
So much for the moral and intellectual integrity of George Steiner.
The only thing Steiner got right was his observation that there is “an almost complete gap in the source material available to any serious student of modern history, psychology, politics and sociology (most of the texts have never been available in English and several have all but disappeared in their original language).”
I remember at the time feeling extremely dissatisfied with the Rosenberg volume. Despite being a Leftist unsympathetic to whites or Nazis, I knew that I was being sold a bill of goods. I wanted Rosenberg’s message unmediated, so that I could evaluate it for myself. I didn’t want anyone else doing my thinking for me.
In retrospect, it is clear from that fact alone that I did not have a Leftist bone in my body. I was simply muddled in the head.
In 1980 the right-wing Noontide Press of Torrance, California (associated with the Institute for Historical Review) published the first full-length English translation (by Vivian Bird) of The Myth of the Twentieth Century: An Evaluation of the Spiritual-Intellectual Confrontation of Our Age, with a preface by Peter Peel and an introduction by James B. Whisker, professor of political science at West Virginia University.
Despite criticisms of the book, Whisker wrote that along with Mein Kampf and Hermann Göring ‘s Germany Reborn, the Myth “created the basis of German National Socialist political thought.” In his judgment, “it is the first and most important book on Nazi philosophy. It contains the essence of the state and the directive power of its leaders. It projects in a concise way the new state that Rosenberg and the others wished to build.”
I remember feeling disappointed with the translation, but gladdened that someone had at last, half a century after its publication in German, gone to the trouble of making the complete text available to English-language readers.
The book did not influence me in any way; nor did the few excerpts translated by Robert Pois for George Steiner. In that sense the Myth resembled Mein Kampf and Triumph of the Will. I found all three books—the two Rosenberg translations and Hitler’s memoirs—and the movie, tedious and unmoving at the time I read them or, in the case of the film, saw it. Triumph of the Will I considered overlong and a colossal bore. Based upon its reputation I’d hoped for much more.
I’d have to re-read or re-watch all of them today to reevaluate what I think in light of everything I’ve learned since. But in view of my reaction, the concluding words of Professor Whisker’s Introduction to the Myth offer an unexpected perspective:
Much of the book will appeal only to the German mind of the 1930s. It constantly reminded me of the movie, Triumph of the Will. Neither were really designed for export and both were aimed only at a specific audience. If a contemporary reader in America were to fail to respond to either it would not bother Rosenberg. Both were meant to be felt more than rationally analyzed or understood. Both were to leave more of an impression on the audience than is evident to the average reader today. The message is very difficult to bring to a contemporary audience in a different culture operating under a different myth. It was an ideology wholly fitted to one and only one society at one particular time.
German Philosopher Giant Martin Heidegger Blamed Jews for “Self-Destructing” in Holocaust
In a startling revelation in his so-called “Black Notebooks,” one of Germany’s leading philosophers of the 20th century, Martin Heidegger, blames the Jews for the Holocaust.
According to article in last week’s Italian daily Corriere della Sera by Heidegger expert Donatella Di Cesare, “The Shoah was an act of self-destruction by the Jews.
This is the view that emerges from the new volume of Heidegger’s Black Notebooks.”
Heidegger wrote during the Holocaust in 1942 that the “community of Jews” is “in the age of the Christian West – the age of metaphysics – the principle of destruction.” He wrote further: “Only when what is essentially ‘Jewish,’ in the metaphysical sense, combats what is Jewish, is the peak of self-destruction in history reached.”
Heidegger, a towering figure in the school of continental European philosophy who died in 1976, was the rector at the University of Freiburg and summarily dismissed Jewish professors at the outset of the Nazi movement in the 1930s.
He was a member of the NSDAP.
The German-American Jewish philosopher Hannah Arendt, a former student and lover of Heidegger, had defended him as a leading light in modern philosophy.
Speaking with The Jerusalem Post on Monday, Efraim Zuroff, the chief Nazi-hunter for the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said, “The latest findings regarding Heidegger’s views of the mass murders of European Jews clearly reveal a total lack of understanding of the criminality of the annihilation of the Jews by the Third Reich.”
Zuroff,who heads the Jerusalem office of the Wiesenthal Center, added, “It also makes one wonder to what degree Hannah Arendt was influenced by him in the Eichmann trial. It makes research by Bettina Stangneth in her book Eichmann before Jerusalem: The unexamined life of a mass murderer” all the more important.
She conclusively proves that Arendt misread Eichmann.”
Arendt (1906-1975) wrote in her book Eichmann in Jerusalem that the Nazi official was merely a faceless bureaucrat.
According to her critics, she failed to grasp the lethal anti-Semitism that animated his behavior and world outlook.
The Auschwitz survivor and Austrian-Jewish journalist Jean Amery slammed Arendt for her work.
Di Cesare wrote that the Shoah for Heidegger is “presented as playing a decisive role” in a main tenant of Heidegger’s philosophy of the history of being.
After analyzing Heidegger’s newly discovered writings, she found that, “In this sense, the extermination of the Jews represents the apocalyptic moment when that which destroys ends up destroying itself. As the peak of ‘self-destruction in history,’ the Shoah makes possible the purification of being.”
Heidegger, as an anti-technology proponent, saw the Jews as the embodiment of a technological world that he loathed. He plays down the Holocaust and at times denies the existence of extermination camps in his notebooks.