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January 07, 1983 - Image 64

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Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1983-01-07

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64 Friday, January 1, 1983

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Intent of Holocaust Revisionists ' Is Exposed

By REV. FRANKLIN H.
LITTELL

His name is Austin J.
App, and he has been
National Institute
associated with anti-
on the Holocaust
PHILADELPHIA — Semitic and Fascist
Since 1959 I have taught, "fronts" for many years.
In his numerous tracts he
each year, at least one
leaves
no doubt as to his
course dealing with the
Nazi assault on the Jewish basic loyalties. In one of
people and upon such Chris- them he writes, "the truth is
tians as stayed Christian that in World War II the
during the Third Reich. Third Reich fought for jus-
Certain basic themes reap- tice, and the Allies fought to
pear regularly, as young prevent justice . ." In an-
students try to come to other he writes that Hitler
terms with the meaning of and the Third Reich were
"basically Christian."
the Holocaust.
In his recently published
When we turn to the les-
autobiography,
printed on
sons of the Holocaust the
same thing happens. And his own press, he displays a
the denials are predictable, picture of himself proudly
at first. Rarely does any accepting a cash prize from
student, even an under- a contemporary German
graduate, even at the be- Nazi leader.
ginning of the course, deny
App hates the memory of
the truth of the Holocaust. Woodrow Wilson as rabidly
But more and more fre- as he hates the memory of
quently reference is being FDR, and he wrote in the
made to "those people who first issue of "The Journal of
deny the Holocaust." In Historical Review": "The
short, the so-called "histor- unhappy mission of the Re-
ical revisionists" are get- visionists will have to be to
ting attention today that show that we got unjustly
they did not get a decade into both World Wars
ago. •
against Germany . ."
One of the most prolific
There are the two pre-
"revisionist" writers over sent - themes that App
decades is a now retired (like Butz of Northwest-
Roman Catholic aca- ern University and other
demic who taught for "revisionists") returns to
years at LaSalle College. again and again. The key

REV. LITTELL

that unlocks all closets
and passageways is a
seething hatred of Jews.
The recurring themes
are: first, criticism of Israel
at every opportunity; sec-
ond, anxiety about the fu-
ture of "Christian
America." Both of these
themes have political
potential today that reaches
far beyond the oddball cir-
cles of marginal academics
who want simply to deny
the Holocaust.
App's understanding of
Israel's wars for survival is
as twisted as his under-
standing of the AEF in
World War I and D-Day in
World War II. He tells us in
one of his articles that Israel

has several times attacked
the Arabs (1956, 1967,
1973!) and is now oppres-
sing "the Palestinians."
In "The Six Million Swin-
dle" he tells us that Bol-
shevism and Zionism are
the world's most evil
ideologies, that the Morgen-
thau Plan was a Jewish-
Communist plot against
Christian Germany, and
that the Holocaust is a fab-
rication to squeeze repara-
tions out of the Germans for
help to Israel's economy.
App's understanding
of American religious
history is equally bizarre,
until we remember that
hatred of Jews is the real
motor of his motivation.
In his cave, "Christian
America" is threatened
by Jewish control and
"mongrelization" of the
human stock.
As he writes in another
tract, "Can Christianity
Survive When Jews Control
the Media and the Money?"
"Can the Christian Ameri-
can way of life be main-
tained . .?" ". . . whether
America can long remain
the Christian country its
founders envisioned . ."
The notion of a return to
the "good old days" of
"Christian America" has a
much wider appeal than

"historical revisionism,"
just as paranoid visions of
Zionist conspiracies have
standing in many circles
that today look for every
opportunity to attack Israel
and its government.
It is not at all uncommon
today to hear some "liberal"
churchman, who has never
examined himself for anti-
Semitism, hold forth at
length to explain why he is
critical of "Zionism" and Is-
raeli policy — but of course
has no anti-Semitism in his
heart.
The expressed aim of
the "historical re-
visionists" is to challenge
the facts of the
Holocaust. But the real
aim is elsewhere: the true
goal of the "historical re-
visionists" is political,
not academic or educa-
tion. The political aim is
this: to rehabilitate
Nazism, to undermine the
American-Israel alliance
and to continue the anti-
Semite's war against the
Jews in America.
Yad Vashem is publish-
ing a research paper of mine
which exposes the finances
and organizational initia-
tive that founded the Insti-
tute of Historical Review
and its journal. Helping
students to an informed

judgment is of course impor-
tant. But the real questions
are political, for the aims of
the "historical revisionists"
are political. Politics is the
science of power and conflict
and order and, hopefully,
justice to some measure.
Where are the laws to
deal with the overt actions
of Nazis and anti-Semites?
(To publish and distribute
denials of the Holocaust is a
crime in the German Fed-
eral Republic.)
Where are the academic
disciplines which prevent
fascist and anti-Semitic in-
filtration into our colleges
and universities? (The great
universities of the Weimar
Republic waffled this issue
too.)
Where are the church
disciplines which,
enforced, purge the
"Body of Christ" of its
betrayers? (The Roman
Catholic and Protestant
church leaders in Ger-
many fumbled this issue
too, during the rise of the
terrorist movement
which was the NSDAP —
before it ever became a
criminal government.)
The "historical re-
visionists" are serious, not
about history but about
power in politics. Where are
their serious adversaries?

Volunteers Aid 200 Isolated, Elderly Jews in Detroit

By BEVERLY WOLKIND

Jewish Welfare Federation

They live in the Cass Cor-
ridor, on East Grand
Boulevard, and on West
Chicago. Most are elderly;
some are mentally im-
paired, having spent. years
shut away in institutions.
And they are Jews.
The more than 200 Jews
living in Detroit's inner-city
nursing hoines and adult
' care facilities are no longer
forgotten, however, thanks
to the Volunteers for Iso-
lated People (VIP) group of

Volunteer Joe LaPides
and havera Dorothy
Umlah share a happy
moment at the VIP
Hanuka party last
month.

the Jewish Vocational Serv-
ice.
VIP is part of the JVS
Project Outreach program,
initiated in 1980 with a
grant from the Jewish
Community Foundation of
United Jewish Charities.
Volunteers visit their
friends or "haverim," as
they prefer to call them,
at least once a month,
bringing warmth, com-
panionship and a Jewish
newspaper or a nosh.
There also are special
programs held monthly
for those able to attend.
According to volunteers
Dr. Leonard Aronovitz and
Sam Sobel, who were in-
strumental in launching
the VIP program, the
monthly visits provide their
elderly and handicapped
friends with positive com-
munication, as well as "a
sense of pride in their
Jewishness."
"Some of these people
were so desperate for
socialization," said
Aronovitz, "that they had
participated in Christian
religious services." He re-
lated how the program has
made a difference . . . for
the elderly man who sud-
denly started wearing a
yarmulke he had carried in
his pocket for years; for an
uncommunicative woman

who now greets the volun-
teers with a kiss.
"It makes you realize that
all people have the same
needs," Arcinovitz added.
"It's just a matter of getting
through the barriers."

The Project Outreach
program was seen as a
way to break those bar-
riers when it grew out of a
subcommittee of the
Jewish Welfare Federa-
tion's Community Serv-
ices Division, working in
conjunction with Rabbi
Solomon Gruskin. As
chaplain for the state of
Michigan for more than
30 years, Rabbi Gruskin
visited Jewish in-
stitutionalized persons
and was concerned about
those who were released
and in need of services.
"In developing the pro-
gram, it was logical for
Jewish Vocational Service,
which was an important
presence in the city of De-
troit, to play a key role,"
said Dr. Conrad L. Giles,
chairman of Federation's
Task Force on Non-
Institutional Services for
the Jewish Elderly. JVS is a
member agency of Federa-
tion and a beneficiary of Al-
lied Jewish Campaign
funds. Nora Barron is JVS
president, and Albert I.

Ascher is executive direc-
tor.
Project Outreach staff
worker Faye Menczer and
volunteer coordinator Joe
LaPides recruit volunteers
who generally work in
teams. "Our volunteers in-
clude housewives, working
professionals and senior
citizens," said Mrs. Menc-
zer. She said that most of
the haverim, or clients, are
over 70 years old, and 80
percent of them have no vis-
itors other than the volun-
teers.
The program currently
involves 210 haverim. Mrs.
Menczer hopes to reach
other isolated elderly per-
sons who may not be in
adult care facilities, but
who live alone without con-
tact from friends or family.
She also would like to ex-
pand her volunteer force.
Volunteers are asked
to make a commitment of
two or three hours a
month. They receive
orientation and are in-
troduced to their
haverim by Mrs: Menc-
zer. Some, like volunteer
Edwina Davis, visit sev-
eral friends at one loca-
tion. An assistant to a De-
troit City Council
member, Mrs. Davis
works downtown and
visits during her lunch
hour or on the way home
from work.

"I have gained more from
this program than I can ever
give," said Mrs. Davis. She
added that she enjoys the
many questions of her new
friends, especially those
about her family. She re-
lated how her haverim gave
her notes and prayers to

take to the Western Wall on
The personal contact of
a recent trip to Israel. They the VIP program has also
were, of course, eager to enabled the haverim to
hear about her experiences relate more to others and
when she returned.
to feel better about them-
According to Mrs. Menc- selves. Volunteer Ed
zer, the Jewish contact the Kahn, an area pharma-
program affords the cist and businessman,
haverim is vital. She noted told about one of his new
that 85 percent of the adult friends.
"He had been so alone;"
care facilities' owners or
"providers" are not Jewish. said Kahn, "that he couldn't
With frequent visits from believe I was doing this be-
Christian clergy, the resi- cause I wanted to. He asked
dents "really live in a more if someone was paying me."
Kahn visits a number of
Christian environment
than the general Jewish haverim, bringing them
magazines and bagels.
population."
The importance of Jewish "This is the most satisfying
programming was evident thing I have ever done," he
at last month's VIP Hanuka added.
A "fringe benefit" of the
party, held at JVS offices in
Detroit. The enthusiasm of program is the advocacy
volunteers like Sobel, who role that has grown out of it.
greeted the haverim and
Anyone interested in vol-
gave a helping hand to some unteering or providing
handicapped participants, names of persons who could
was matched by the joy of 50 benefit from the program
guests who proudly recited can contact Faye Menczer at
the Hebrew blessing over Jewish Vocational Service,
the candles with volunteer 4250 Woodward, Detroit,
Lou Barden.
833-8100.

Volunteer Sam Sobel, right, is shown com-
municating with hand signs with haver William Stark,
a blind and deaf inner-city resident.

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