Holocaust-denier Irving to lead tours of death camps

British revisionist historian scheduled to take a tour to concentration camps and former site of Warsaw Ghetto.

David Irving 311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
David Irving 311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
LONDON – Convicted Holocaust denier David Irving is set to lead guided tours of former Nazi death camps, including Auschwitz and Treblinka, next week.
The British revisionist historian, who was convicted of Holocaust denial in 2006 in Austria and sentenced to three years in jail, is scheduled to take a week-long tour on Tuesday to the concentration camps in Poland and the former site of the Warsaw Ghetto.
RELATED:Protesters break into Oxford debate
The stunt is expected to attract a number of far-Right sympathizers from across Europe.
Advertising material for the tour promises an experience far removed from the “tourist attractions of Auschwitz.” Participants will be charged $2,650 each.
In a report in the Daily Mail newspaper on Friday, Irving claimed he was not a Holocaust denier and that Treblinka was a real death camp site, as opposed to Auschwitz, which he described as a “Disney-style tourist attraction.”
The controversial tour was condemned by Jewish community groups in the UK.
“This is Irving’s latest cynical attempt to rewrite history and is an affront to the victims of Nazism and those who fought against it,” said Jon Benjamin, chief executive of the Board of Deputies of British Jews.
“All it will prove is how even insurmountable historical evidence will not sway him from his prejudices and dogma.”
“David Irving is a proven racist and a Holocaust denier and his forthcoming ‘tour’ of the Treblinka Nazi death camp can serve no purpose other than to further provoke far-Right extremists and insult the memory of Holocaust victims and Survivors,” said Karen Pollock, chief executive of the London-based Holocaust Educational Trust.
Anti-racist group Searchlight also condemned the initiative. In a joint statement with its Polish counterpart, Nigdy Wiecej (Never Again), it called on the Polish government to ban Irving from entering the country.
The Polish Embassy in London said that Irving could not be barred from the country but said its secret service would closely monitor his movements.
In 2006, Irving was convicted by an Austrian court of Holocaust denial, using a 1992 law which applies to anyone who denies, plays down, approves of or tries to excuse the Nazi genocide or other Nazi crimes against humanity.
The court found that Irving was an active Holocaust denier, anti-Semite and racist, who “associates with right-wing extremists and promotes neo-Nazism.”
In 1996, Irving sued Prof. Deborah Lipstadt for libel, after she called him a Holocaust denier in her book Denying the Holocaust.
Three courts subsequently found for Lipstadt, concluding that Irving was a Holocaust denier, an anti-Semite and a racist.