Herman Rosenblat: The Dreadful Case of a Holocaust Hoaxer

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…by Jonas E. Alexis

 

hqdefaultAt the end of February, Holocaust liar and showman Herman Rosenblat passed away in Florida, which is where this writer is from. Rosenblat had his moment of fame when he wrote the historically reliable memoir Angel at the Fence: The True Story of a Love that Survived.

Of course, I was joking here. Angel at the Fence was one of the most devastating tracts which purported to tell another story about what happened to some people in Nazi Germany. Rosenblat deceptively concocted one hoax after another in order to push the Holocaust envelope to a new political and lucrative height.

Frauds and fabrications, as we all know, usually get media attention pretty quickly, and Angel at the Fence was no exception.

You remember when Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code came on the scene, postulating, among other things, that Jesus had a wife named Mary Magdalene, that she is the “holy grail” and bore Jesus’ child, that the Knights Templar attempted to seal this “secret,” that Leonardo Da Vinci actually painted Mary Magdalene next to Jesus, that there was some secret organization called The Priory of Sion, that the Vatican intentionally suppressed those “truths”?

Well, scholars and historians who are not even Christians had a good laugh over those issues mentioned in the book.[1] What was equally worse for Dan Brown was that Lewis Perdue argued that Brown plagiarized some the things Perdue had previously written in his books The Da Vinci Legacy (1982) and Daughter of God (2000):

At any rate, someone had to find a lucrative way to fool people, and Dan Brown was the genius who did just that. The sad part is that the masses swallowed his assertions hook, line, and sinker. (I remember back in 2005 in Florida that a student of mine came up to me and told me that he was starting to believe what Brown was saying. I had to explain to him where the facts and frauds where lie in the book.)






Within four years of its publication, virtually everyone, including laymen, ended up discarding the extraordinary claims made The Da Vinci Code. But by 2012, a Harvard scholar by the name of Karen King declared that she had discovered a papyrus fragment which indicated that there were Christian communities or circles which believed that Jesus had a wife. She later argued that it was “The Gospel of Jesus’ Wife.”[2]

Again, this quickly got media attention.[3] Some speculative scholars even got into the act. Based on King’s “discovery,” Gerhard Fecht from the faculty of Egyptology at the Free University of Berlin hastily declared that Jesus was probably married.[4]

Well, two years later, it was discovered that King’s the so-called evidence was actually a forgery.  Furthermore, it was pretty clear to experts and researchers that the papyrus fragment “was inked in a dialect that academics say didn’t exist at the time it was supposedly written.”[5]

One expert at Brown University declared that there were “fatal blunders” in the fragment, and some of those blunders were “almost hilarious.”[6] Another unnamed scholar declared,

“Having evaluated the evidence, many specialists in ancient manuscripts and Christian origins think Karen King and the Harvard Divinity School were the victims of an elaborate ruse.”[7]

Back in November 2012, Wolf-Peter Funk, an authority on early manuscripts at Laval University, told one reporter, “Some guy in the first and second century decided to write the words ‘my wife’ and put them in Jesus’ mouth.”[8]

King was quiet for a while, but when things were piling up, it was hard to remain silent. She finally had to concede that the fragment “may point in the direction of forgery.”[9]


Karen King
Karen King

Karen King seemed to have been motivated by fame because she moved to Harvard from Occidental College in 1997

“and found herself on a fast track. In 2009, the divinity school named her the Hollis professor—the oldest endowed chair in the United States and a 288-year-old post that had never before been held by a woman.”[10]

It was almost the same thing with Rosenblat, who desperately wanted his one-time fame. He actually got it—for a short period of time at the expense of the ignorant masses.

Rosenblat was quickly placed on a pedestal. He had to tell his truthful story, and to do that he got to do interviews, and to do interviews he had to appear on some of the popular shows. This is where the Oprah Winfrey Show came in.

“Oprah had welcomed Herman and Roma Rosenblat as guests on her show in 1996, after Herman won a contest sponsored by the New York Post for ‘the best love story sent in by a reader.’

“The story he told was of his internment as a boy in a Nazi concentration camp, and how he was sustained by a young girl who threw apples over the fence to him. Many years later, in Israel, he went on a blind date with the same girl but did not recognize her. Subsequently, they met again in New York and married.

“When the Rosenblats returned to The Oprah Winfrey Show eleven years later, Winfrey lauded their romance as ‘the single greatest love story, in twenty-two years of doing this show, we’ve ever told on the air.’ The story was picked up in the ‘couples’ volume of Chicken Soup for the Soul and was ultimately sold, in book form, to Berkley Books.”[11]

Jewish writers were excited about this new Holocaust project as well, which to them was another historical breakthrough which would prove that revisionists or “Holocaust deniers” are really liars and cruel for questioning key aspects of the Holocaust narrative. Writers began to cite Rosenblat’s account as reliable. In the book Chanukah, we read:

“Growing up in Poland, Herman Rosenblat witnessed pogroms, had to fight his way through school, and was accused by local priests of being a Christ killer. In 1939 he was imprisoned by the Germans, and in 1944 he was transferred to the Schlieben concentration camp seventy miles south of Berlin.

“One day Herman spotted Roma, who was eight years old at the time, walking near the fence that separated the camp from the farmer’s fields. In German, he asked her if she could bring him some food, but she didn’t understand German. He then tried Polish, and this time she understood.”[12]

The sad thing was that Angel at the Fence turned out to be a big lie, and this again was a great embarrassment for the Holocaust establishment.

Here is the other puzzling phenomenon: Deborah Lipstadt, a thought police in the Holocaust establishment, did not chastise Rosenblat for fabricating the lie but did rail against those who questioned the veracity and accuracy of the book.

Lipstadt proved to be a historically reliable scholar and a genius by saying that those who denied Angel at the Fence are Engel deniers![13] Finally, when it was obvious to all that the book could be a deathblow for the Holocaust project, Lipstadt had to admit that the book was a fraud from top to bottom.[14]

This is not the first that that Lipstadt literally exposed herself as an emperor with no historical clothes.


Deborah Lipstadt, author of Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory, is the Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish and Holocaust Studies at Emory University. She came to teach at Emory not because of her serious scholarship, but because of the Jewish influence.[15]

One can say that Lipstadt’s scholarly endeavor began when she started to assign the book Fragments: Memories of a Wartime Childhood 1939-1948 to her students.

The Holocaust memoir of Benjamin Wilkomirski, Fragments came out in 1995 and enjoyed immediate success. Journalist Melissa Katsoulis writes that sales

“across Europe and the English-speaking world were impressive. It won the prestigious Prix Memoire de la Shoah in France, the Jewish Quarterly’s prize in London and also its American equivalent, the National Jewish Books Award.

“Feted by critics, historians and book-buyers alike, Wilkomirski found himself finding off interview requests from television, newspaper and magazine editors, and for the next three years rose to become one of the most sought-after and well-loved survivors of Hitler’s atrocities.”[16]

Daniel Jonah Goldhagen, who never misses his opportunity to write completely fraudulent books, also supported the Fragments,[17] as well as major newspapers such as Publishers Weekly.

The whole story was a complete hoax, a fabrication by a non-Jew! As Norman Finkelstein puts it, “Half-fruitcake, half-mountebank, Wilkomirski, it turns out, spent the entire war in Switzerland. He is not even a Jew.”[18]

After three years of fame, Wilkomirski’s fraud was discovered by real Jew Daniel Ganzfried,

“himself the child of a survivor…Writing for the news magazine Weltwoche, he presented his dossier of research into the man he had been secretly studying for over a year: a close reading of Fragments, he argued, showed that the author had not actually been in the camps at all—his accounts of the working, layouts and customs of those places simply did not chime with the testimonies of those whose presence in them could easily be verified (which Wilkomirski’s could not).”[19]

Though Wilkomirski defended the book’s accuracy, the fraud was obvious to Ganzfried. To set the record straight, his literary agent Eva Koralnik hired Stefan Machler, a historian, to “separate fact from fiction…Six months later, in 1999, Marchler’s report was complete.”[20]

Fragments turned out to be a hoax, and Wilkomirski faded into obscurity. “I feel pity for him because I know him personally,” declares Heide Grasnick, one of his editors. “He’s not a happy person.”[21]

But the frauds do not matter to publishers who wanted to cash in on the hoax: “Arthur Samuelson (publisher): ‘It is a pretty cool book…It’s only a fraud if you call it non-fiction. I would then reissue it, in the fiction category. Maybe it’s not true—then he’s a better writer!”[22]

Despite the revelation of Fragments as a hoax, Deborah Lipstadt stated that the book was still “powerful as a novel.”

This brings to light the driving ideology behind those who use the Holocaust as a weapon to subvert history. As Israeli writer Boas Evron himself put it, doesn’t the memory of Nazi Germany deserve a rigorous historical enquiry and factual account?[23] Should we summon fabrications in order to support an ideology? And are we not within our reasonable right to ask for evidence and rigorous historical testing?

As it turns out, the Holocaust tool is powerful because the Jewish leadership is telling us who can and cannot wear the badge of the Holocaust.


Going back to Rosenblat. How did he defend the hoax he presented in the book? Listen to him:

“I wanted to bring happiness to people, to remind them not to hate, but to love and tolerate all people. I brought good feelings to a lot of people and I brought hope to many.”[24]

So, Rosenblat thought that lies could be used to tell what one believes to be the truth. This modus operandi, if taken to its “logical” conclusions, works against the ideological framework of the entire Holocaust project.

If lies are permitted to tell the “truth,” then couldn’t other people make the same argument about Hitler? Why do people like Rosenblat hate Hitler so much, and why don’t they want to listen to “Holocaust deniers”? Why are people like Rosenblat full of hate for the Germans? Once again, why did our good friend Dr. Fredrick Toben have to spend months in jail? Why did the Holocaust establishment have to strip him of his human dignity as a German?

Furthermore, it must be emphasized that it was Elie Wiesel who unapologetically declared,

“Every Jew, somewhere in his being, should set apart a zone for hate—healthy, virile, hate—for what the German personifies and or what persists in the German. To do otherwise would be a betrayal of the dead.”[25]

In the same vein, former Prime Minister of Israel Menachem Begin stated:

“There is not one German who has not murdered our fathers. Every German is a Nazi. Every German is a murderer.”[26]

Could it be one reason why some Jewish radicals are calling on Israel to literally nuke Germany and Iran?[27]

More importantly, what about what the Red Army personifies and or what persists in the Red Army, the brutal raping of at least two million precious German women, not to mention the overall damage to goods and property? Are people like Wiesel betraying the dead by ignoring the millions who lost their lives at the hands of the Bolshevik regime? With respect to one particular event, one Jewish historian writes,

There were as many as 10,000—15,000 Germans in the football stadium in Strahov. Here the Czechs organized a game where 5,000 prisoners had to run for their lives as guards fired on them with machine guns. Some were shot in the latrines.

“The bodies were not cleared away and those who used the latrines later had to defecate on their dead countrymen. As a rule all SS men were killed, generally by a shot in the back of the head or the stomach.

“Even after 16 May when order was meant to be restored, twelve to twenty people died daily and were taken away from the stadium on a dung wagon. Most had been tortured first.”[28]

One particular prison cell, which used to be a brothel, was located on a hill.

Germans were locked up in the cellar, and the whores and their pimps indulged in a new orgy of sadism and perversity. German men and women had to strip naked for their treatment. One of them was Professor Walter Dick, head of a department at the Bulovka Hospital. He was driven insane by his torturers and hanged himself on a chain.”[29]

If Hitler’s willing executioners were ordinary Germans, then Stalin’s willing executioners were largely Jewish revolutionaries.[30] People like Wiesel cannot wiggle out of that puzzle, and this is not coming from Jonas E. Alexis. Listen again to one Jewish writer by the name of Sever Plocker:

“Here’s a particularly forlorn historical date: Almost 90 years ago, between the 19th and 20th of December 1917, in the midst of the Bolshevik revolution and civil war, Lenin signed a decree calling for the establishment of The All-Russian Extraordinary Commission for Combating Counter-Revolution and Sabotage, also known as Cheka.

“Within a short period of time, Cheka became the largest and cruelest state security organization. Its organizational structure was changed every few years, as were its names: From Cheka to GPU, later to NKVD, and later to KGB.

“We cannot know with certainty the number of deaths Cheka was responsible for in its various manifestations, but the number is surely at least 20 million, including victims of the forced collectivization, the hunger, large purges, expulsions, banishments, executions, and mass death at Gulags.

“Whole population strata were eliminated: Independent farmers, ethnic minorities, members of the bourgeoisie, senior officers, intellectuals, artists, labor movement activists, “opposition members” who were defined completely randomly, and countless members of the Communist party itself.

“Within Russia itself, very few people have been brought to justice for their crimes in the NKVD’s and KGB’s service.

“An Israeli student finishes high school without ever hearing the name ‘Genrikh Yagoda,’ the greatest Jewish murderer of the 20th Century, the GPU’s deputy commander and the founder and commander of the NKVD.

“Yagoda diligently implemented Stalin’s collectivization orders and is responsible for the deaths of at least 10 million people. His Jewish deputies established and managed the Gulag system. After Stalin no longer viewed him favorably, Yagoda was demoted and executed, and was replaced as chief hangman in 1936 by Yezhov, the ‘bloodthirsty dwarf.’

“Yezhov was not Jewish but was blessed with an active Jewish wife. In his Book Stalin: Court of the Red Star, Jewish historian Sebag Montefiore writes that during the darkest period of terror, when the Communist killing machine worked in full force, Stalin was surrounded by beautiful, young Jewish women.

“Stalin’s close associates and loyalists included member of the Central Committee and Politburo Lazar Kaganovic. Many Jews sold their soul to the devil of the Communist revolution and have blood on their hands for eternity. We’ll mention just one more: Leonid Reichman, head of the NKVD’s special department and the organization’s chief interrogator, who was a particularly cruel sadist…

“Even if we deny it, we cannot escape the Jewishness of ‘our hangmen,’ who served the Red Terror with loyalty and dedication from its establishment. After all, others will always remind us of their origin.”[31]

If Wiesel is right, that every Jew should reserve a special place in his or her heart for hate, then he is building a rational defense for the Germans to reciprocate.


 A film version of Rosenblat’s Angel at the Fence was in the process, but “by 28 December 2008, Berkley Books had announced that they were pulling the plug on the whole project.”[32]

Rosenblat’s Holocaust party was over. Everyone went home sad, and people were about to bust precisely because they knew that they had been conned. With Rosenblat’s book, the Holocaust establishment thought that they really got the “deniers” by the balls, but the whole story turned out to be another definition of chutzpah. One writer wrote,

“Penguin was embarrassed. Oprah Winfrey…was incensed. And Rosenblat’s son Ken, who had known about the deception for years, was keen to distance himself entirely from the affair, telling the New Republic:

“‘My father is a man who I don’t know. I can’t understand it. It’s not my way of thinking…I didn’t agree with it. I didn’t want anything to do with it. I tried to just stay away from it. It was hurtful. I just never dealt with it.’”[33]

For Rosenblat, the story was still true—even though he knew it was a lie from top to bottom. He wrote unapologetically:

“In my imagination, in my mind, I believed it. Even now, I believe it, that she [Roma] was there and she threw the apple to me.”[34]


The Rosenblat’s debacle should certainly teach us something deep about the past and how it should be approached. The central issue boils down to this one central point: a love for truth and finding out what the truth is will liberate a person from political, intellectual, and spiritual bondage.

The past cannot be studied accurately without this major premise, otherwise we will find ourselves lost in ideological confusion, intellectual mumbo jumbo, and political nonsense.

In addition, truth cannot be threatened by alternative ideas because those ideas will either ally themselves with the truth or will eventually crumble—although they may enjoy their political power for a short time.

Christ said that “you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.”

The opposite of that statement is also true: those who are not of the truth or those who simply cannot stand the truth will try to shut it up by any means. We have already pointed out in numerous articles that Talmudic disputation essentially rejects metaphysical Logos, the essence of life and the central metaphysics that binds us all together as rational human beings. As St. Paul puts it, “For in him we live and move and have our being. As some of your own poets have said, We are his offspring” (Acts 17:28)

In essence, by engaging in a war against Logos and the embodiment of truth, the Dreadful Few and the Holocaust establishment are also engaging in a war against truth itself. This is one reason why they are afraid of people who challenge their prevailing dogma.


[1] See for example Bart D. Ehrman, Truth and Fiction in the Da Vinci Code: A Historian Reveals What We Really Know about Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and Constantine (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004); Carl E. Olson, The Da Vinci Hoax: Exposing the Errors in the Da Vinci Code (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2004).

[2] Ariel Sabar, “The Reaction to Karen King’s Gospel Discovery,” Smithsonian Magazine, November 2012.

[3] Rodrique NGowi, “Jesus Had a Wife? Bible Scholars Question Harvard Finding,” Christian Science Monitor, September 19, 2012.

[4] B. D. Cohen, “Suggestion of a Married Jesus,” Harvard Gazette, September 18, 2012.

[5] Terrence McCoy, “How Harvard scholars may have been duped by a forged ‘Gospel of Jesus’s Wife,’” Washington Post, May 5, 2014.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Ariel Sabar, “The Reaction to Karen King’s Gospel Discovery,” Smithsonian Magazine, November 2012; for further studies on similar topics, see for example Philip Jenkins, Hidden Gospels: How the Search for Jesus Lost Its Way (New York: Oxford University Press, 2002); Rodney Stark, Cities of God: The Real Story of How Christianity Became an Urban Movement and Conquered Rome (New York: HarperOne, 2006), chapter 6.

[9] Terrence McCoy, “How Harvard scholars may have been duped by a forged ‘Gospel of Jesus’s Wife,’” Washington Post, May 5, 2014.

[10] Sabar, “The Reaction to Karen King’s Gospel Discovery,” Smithsonian Magazine, November 2012.

[11] Majorie Garber, The Use and Abuse of Literature (New York: Anchor Books, 2011), 189.

[12] Shimon Apisdorf, Chanukah: Eight Nights of Light, Eight Gifts for the Soul (Baltimore: Leviathan Press, 1997), 138.

[13] Garber, The Use and Abuse of Literature, 189.

[14] Emily Langer, “Herman Rosenblat invented a love story for the ages,” The Star, February 27, 2015.

[15] D. D. Guttenplan, The Holocaust on Trial (New York: Norton, 2002), 67-68.

[16] Melissa Katsoulis, Literary Hoaxes: An Eye-Opening History of Famous Frauds (New York: Skyhorse Publishing, 2009), 237.

[17] Finkelstein, The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering (New York: Verso, 2000), 67.

[18] Ibid., 60.

[19] Katsoulis, Literary Hoaxes, 237-238.

[20] Ibid., 238.

[21] Ibid., 240.

[22] Finkelstein, The Holocaust Industry, 60.

[23] Ibid., 41.

[24] Garber, The Use and Abuse of Literature., 190.

[25] Elie Wiesel, Legends of Our Time (New York: Schocken Books, 1982), 142.

[26] Quoted in Tom Segev, The Seventh Million: The Israelis and the Holocaust (New York: Henry Holt, 2000), 216.

[27] “Op-ed Calls on Israel to Nuke Germany, Iran,” Times of Israel, March 11, 2015.

[28] Giles MacDonogh, After the Reich: The Brutal History of the Allied Occupation (New York: Basic Books, 2007), 134.

[29] Ibid.

[30] For a historical study on this, see for example Erich Haberer, Jews and Revolution in Nineteenth-Century Russia (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995).

[31] Sever Plocker, “Stalin’s Jews,” Y-Net News, December 12, 2006.

[32] Melissa Katsoulis, Telling Tales: A History of Literary Hoaxes (London: Constable & Robinson, 2009), 250.

[33] Ibid., 250-251.

[34] Quoted in Sam Roberts, “Herman Rosenblat, 85, Dies; Made Up Holocaust Love Story,” NY Times, February 21, 2015.

Author Details
Read Jonas Alexis’s latest posts here >>>

Jonas E. Alexis has degrees in mathematics and philosophy. He studied education at the graduate level. His main interests include U.S. foreign policy, history of Israel/Palestine conflict, and the history of ideas. He is the author of the new book Zionism vs. the West: How Talmudic Ideology is Undermining Western Culture. He teaches mathematics in South Korea.
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