SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Holocaust denial

Holocaust denial is the act of denying the genocide of Jews in the Holocaust during World War II. Holocaust deniers make one or more of the following false statements: that Nazi Germany's Final Solution was aimed only at deporting Jews from the Reich and did not include their extermination; because Holocaust denial is associated with certain racist propaganda, it is considered a serious societal problem in many places where it occurs and is illegal in several European countries and Israel. Holocaust denial is supported by some Middle Eastern governments, including Syria. Scholars use the term denial to describe the views and methodology of Holocaust deniers in order to distinguish them from legitimate historical revisionists, who challenge orthodox interpretations of history using established historical methodologies. Holocaust deniers do not accept denial as an appropriate description of their activities and use the euphemism revisionism instead; the methodologies of Holocaust deniers are based on a predetermined conclusion that ignores overwhelming historical evidence to the contrary.

In some post-Soviet states, Holocaust deniers do not deny the fact of mass murder of Jews, but they deny the participation of their own nationals in the Holocaust. Most Holocaust deniers claim, either explicitly or implicitly, that the Holocaust is a hoax—or an exaggeration—arising from a deliberate Jewish conspiracy designed to advance the interest of Jews at the expense of other people. For this reason, Holocaust denial is considered to be an antisemitic conspiracy theory. Holocaust deniers prefer to refer to their work as historical revisionism, object to being referred to as "deniers". Emory University professor Deborah Lipstadt has written that: "The deniers' selection of the name revisionist to describe themselves is indicative of their basic strategy of deceit and distortion and of their attempt to portray themselves as legitimate historians engaged in the traditional practice of illuminating the past." Scholars consider this misleading since the methods of Holocaust denial differ from those of legitimate historical revision.

Legitimate historical revisionism is explained in a resolution adopted by the Duke University History Department, November 8, 1991, reprinted in Duke Chronicle, November 13, 1991 in response to an advertisement produced by Bradley R Smith's Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust: That historians are engaged in historical revision is correct. Historical revision of major events... is not concerned with the actuality of these events. Lipstadt writes that modern Holocaust denial draws its inspiration from various sources, including a school of thought which used an established method to question government policies. In 1992 Donald L. Niewyk gave some examples of how legitimate historical revisionism—the re-examination of accepted history and its updating with newly discovered, more accurate, or less-biased information—may be applied to the study of the Holocaust as new facts emerge to change the historical understanding of it: With the main features of the Holocaust visible to all but the willfully blind, historians have turned their attention to aspects of the story for which the evidence is incomplete or ambiguous.

These are not minor matters by any means, but turn on such issues as Hitler's role in the event, Jewish responses to persecution, reactions by onlookers both inside and outside Nazi-controlled Europe. In contrast, the Holocaust denial movement bases its approach on the predetermined idea that the Holocaust, as understood by mainstream historiography, did not occur. Sometimes referred to as "negationism", from the French term négationnisme introduced by Henry Rousso, Holocaust deniers attempt to rewrite history by minimizing, denying or ignoring essential facts. Koenraad Elst writes: Negationism means the denial of historical crimes against humanity, it is not the denial of known facts. The term negationism has gained currency as the name of a movement to deny a specific crime against humanity, the Nazi genocide on the Jews in 1941–45 known as the Holocaust or the Shoah. Negationism is identified with the effort at re-writing history in such a way that the fact of the Holocaust is omitted. While the Second World War was still underway, the Nazis had formed a contingency plan that if defeat was imminent they would carry out the total destruction of German records.

Historians have documented evidence that as Germany's defeat became imminent and Nazi leaders realized they would most be captured and brought to trial, great effort was made to destroy all evidence of mass extermination. Heinrich Himmler instructed his camp commandants to destroy records and other signs of mass extermination; as one of many examples, the bodies of the 25,000 Latvian Jews whom Friedrich Jeckeln and the soldiers under his command had shot at Rumbula in late 1941 were dug up and burned in 1943. Similar operations were undertaken at Belzec and other death camps. In the infamous Posen speeches of October 1943 such as the one on October 4, Himmler explicitly referred to the extermination of the Jews of Europe and further stated that the genocide must be permanently kept secret: I want to refer here frankly to a dif

Tom Bell (politician)

Thomas Bell was a Scottish socialist politician and trade unionist. He is best remembered as a founding member of both the Socialist Labour Party and the Communist Party of Great Britain and as the editor of Communist Review, the official monthly magazine of the latter. Thomas "Tom" Bell was born in Parkhead on the east end of Glasgow, at that time still a semi-rural village, his father was a stonemason, unemployed, while his mother came from a family of coal miners and worked at home spinning cotton and silk. Young Tom enrolled in school in the spring of 1889 and left in the spring of 1894, at the age of 11, going to work first as a milk delivery boy and as an employee at a soft drink bottling plant to help support his impoverished family. While an employee at the bottling shop, Bell became interested in labour politics, he read rationalist works by Ernst Haeckel and Thomas Huxley as well as works on evolution by Charles Darwin and became acquainted with socialist ideas. Together with two companions, Bell joined the Independent Labour Party in 1900.

The young "socialist idealist and enthusiast" Bell found the rather mild and ameliorative program of the ILP insufficient and in 1902 he began to attend economics classes conducted by the Social Democratic Federation, headed by Henry Hyndman, which introduced Bell to the literature of Marxism. In February 1903, Bell left the ILP and enrolled as a member of the SDF; some of the SDF classes which Bell attended were led by George Yates, an engineer by trade who impressed the young Bell with his skill as an orator and knowledge of economics and politics. In the spring of 1903, Bell would follow Yates and the group of revolutionary socialist impossiblists around him out of the SDF and join in the foundation of the Socialist Labour Party, a rival organization. Bell began a seven-year apprenticeship as an iron moulder, but left after nine months to another foundry, where he exaggerated the duration of his previous experience and gained a job on somewhat more favourable terms. After two years there, he went to another foundry that made gas engines, completing his seven-year apprenticeship and joining the Associated Ironmoulders of Scotland in August 1904.

Committed to educating himself, he attended Andersonian College and the Academy of Literature, soon lectured for the Plebs' League. Bell joined the Independent Labour Party in 1900 moved in 1903 to the Marxist Social Democratic Federation. However, within months, he joined with other dissident members to form the Glasgow Socialist Society, soon renamed the Socialist Labour Party, he became a leading figure in the party, but was expelled in 1907 for arguing that the SLP should not favour the Industrial Workers of the World. He was able to rejoin the following year, convincing the majority of the party to form the Advocates of Industrial Unionism. Continuing to work in the metal trades, Bell joined the Singer Company to organise for the Industrial Workers of Great Britain, but was sacked following the failure of a strike in 1911. In 1916, Bell was elected to the Clyde Workers Committee, within which he promoted the SLP's policy of industrial unionism. In 1917, he led a successful national strike of engineers and foundry workers.

Again prominent in 1919, he was elected President of the Associated Ironmoulders, Secretary of the SLP and editor of its newspaper, The Socialist. He sat on a unity committee, intending to negotiate for a single communist party with leaders of the British Socialist Party, Workers Socialist Federation and other socialist groups, but their proposals were repudiated by the SLP. Resigning as Secretary, he helped found the Communist Unity Group, which became an original constituent of the Communist Party of Great Britain. Employed by the CPGB, he was National Organiser, he attended the Third World Congress of the Communist International, visiting Moscow for five months, despite the British Government denying him a visa. He was elected as the CPGB's representative to the Comintern's Executive Committee, he returned to Soviet Russia for the 4th World Congress, remaining in the city as a CPGB representative and reporter, until the end of 1922. Bell held various posts including the editorship of Communist Review.

In 1925, he was one of twelve CPGB leaders gaoled for seditious libel and incitement to mutiny, spending six months inside. The next few years were spent between Russia. In 1930, Bell became the Secretary of the Friends of the Soviet Union, in 1937 he wrote a history of the CPGB. Tom Bell died 19 April 1944. Tom Bell: Radical Glasgow Encyclopedia of Marxism: Glossary of People Thomas Bell, Pioneering Days. London: Lawrence and Wishart, 1941. Thomas Bell Archive Marxists Internet Archive

Vehicle registration plates of Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyz registration plates were first issued in 1980, when the country was still a republic of the Soviet Union. Despite having gained its independence in 1991, it continued to use the old Soviet plates until the introduction of the current format in 1994. Between 1980 and 1993, Kyrgyz plates were manufactured to the Soviet GOST 3207-77 standard; the characters were of the following format: x ## ## XX where x is a lowercase Cyrillic counter letter. 1994 saw the launch of another format, which resembles more the style of registration plates used in Europe. The most notable changes are the switch from Cyrillic letters to Latin, the presence of the Kyrgyz flag in a narrow band to the left of the plate; the alphanumerics are rendered in DIN 1451. The plate format is: X 9999 XX. Starting from July 2015, a new system has entered into circulation; each province now has a two digit code. The new license plates have the font FE-Schrift; the numbers have a font size larger than the letters, similar to Russian vehicle registration plates.

The license plates have the format ## - ### xxx. The plate is black on white. Right under the province codes, there is the Kyrgyz flag and the code KG; the license plates have the format ## - ### xx. The plate is black on white; the license plates have the format ## - ### PT. The plate is black on white; the following plates are black on yellow. These flags show the code KG, but not the Kyrgyz flag; these plates have the following format: ## - #### L, where the first two digits are the province codes. The letter would be either of the following: H: For a vehicle owned by a foreign citizen. P: For a vehicles who would be in the country for more than 6 months M: For foreign firms, their staff and families. K: Belonging to foreign media Diplomatic license plates are white on red, whereas the license plates for UN vehicles are white on blue; the license plates have the format L ## ###. The letter could be any of the following: C: Official and personal vehicles of heads of consular posts and staff, i.e. Corps consulaires D: Vehicles of diplomatic and other international organizations, as well as personal vehicles chapters and employees of the diplomatic rank of the offices, organizations and members of their families, i.e. Corps diplomatiques T: Vehicles of administrative and technical staff of diplomatic and consular missions, other international organizations and the family members of these employees.

The two digit number would be the organization code. The following table shows the codes: The three digit number is assigned in increasing order. Numbers 001 to 099 are assigned to diplomatic missions, numbers 100 to 999 to private cars of the diplomats. On the right end, the date of the issuance of the plate is posted, with the month on the top, the year on the bottom. Honorary Consulate plates are white on red, have the format HC ####, where the four digit number is the country code. On the right end, the date of the issuance of the plate is posted, with the month on the top, the year on the bottom. There's a license plate format for official and personal vehicles of heads of diplomatic missions. Starting from July 2016, a two digit code has been assigned to each region, similar to the format in Russia. There is a potential to add more codes to each region, as each of the existing codes get used up