PATRIOT LETTER: ANOTHER WEEKEND “LIVING WITH THE HOLOCAUST” — PROF. ROBERT FAURISSON ON ANNE FRANK

Patriot Letter. Dated 3/12/05.

Archived by k0nsl.

 

Dear Fellow Patriot!

 

Zundel In Germany:

http://www.adelaideinstitute.org

For Zundel updates please visit the above website!

To submit news, information, etc. about Ernst Zundel,
please e-mail

info@adelaideinstitute.org

 

The answer to yesterday’s quiz comes from the winner:

“it was the 30th of Jan’ 33-M.K”

The winner is…………………….. Michelle
Kunert.

 

This is an extremely long Patriot Letter, however it
is well worth your time, because it gives you Prof.
Robert Faurisson’s assessment of Anne Frank’s diaries.
Print it and keep it in your files or records.

 

For the eigth year, Sacramento is hosting the “Jewish
Film Festival.” It really should be called the
“Holocaust Film Festival” because most movies shown
are about “the struggle of the Jews.”

This year, the featured film is “The Ritchie Boys”.
The Ritchie Boys are mostly German Jews who are
members of an elite US intel unit, providing crucial
info to defeat the Nazis.

“Almost Peaceful” is another film. A group of Jewish
“holocaust survivors” trying to regain a normal life
right after WWII in Paris, France.

But the highlight of the festival is a gala dinner and
a speech by “holocaust survivor” Trude Sorenson, who
survived the “gas showers” by pressing her face
inbetween another woman’s breast!

Rumor has it that Steven Spielberg is interested in
making a movie, entitled: “The Breasts that saved me
from Auschwitz.”

Let’s move on to Friday’s Life Magazine that is being
inserted in all major newspapers, every Friday. It
features a tribute to the 60th anniversary of the
death of Anne Frank.

The tribute is written by “holocaust survivor” Nobel
Prize Winner and Lying King Eli Wiesel. He claims in
his tribute that photos shown of Anne Frank have never
been seen before in public.

To make this holocaust phantasy weekend complete, let
me end with a quote from Wiesel:

“I look at her pictures (Anne Frank) and a question
haunting me for years resurfaces: Why the children?
More than a million, from all over Europe. Killed in
open fields and then in gas chambers – why them?”

Now let’s expose Anne Frank’s Diaries for what they
are: This is an oldie but a goody from revisionist
giant Prof. Robert Faurisson:

[START]

Is The Diary of Anne Frank genuine?

by Robert Faurisson

Is The Diary of Anne Frank genuine? For two years that
question was included in the official syllabus “Text
and Document Criticism,” a seminar reserved for
degreed students in their fourth year. The conclusion
of my studies and research is that The Diary of Anne
Frank is a fraud.

In order to study the question posed and to find an
answer to it, I have carried out the following
investigations:

Internal criticism: the very text of the Diary (in
Dutch) contains a number of unlikely or inconceivable
facts.
A study of the premises in Amsterdam: on the one hand,
the physical impossibilities and, on the other hand,
the explanations made up by Anne Frank’s father
severely compromise him.
Interview of the principal witness: Mr. Otto Frank.
Bibliographical examination: some curious silences and
revelations.
A return to Amsterdam for a new investigation: the
witnesses turn out to be unfavorable to Mr. Frank; the
probable truth.
The “betrayer” and the person who arrested the Franks:
why has Mr. Frank wished to assure them such
anonymity?
Comparison between the Dutch and German texts:
attempting to make too much of it, Mr. Frank has given
himself away; he has signed a literary fraud.
Internal criticism
The first step in the investigation is to determine if
the text is consistent within itself. The Diary
contains an extraordinary number of inconsistencies.

Let us take the example of the noises. Those in
hiding, we are told, must not make the least sound.
This is so much so that, if they cough, they quickly
take codeine. The “enemies” could hear them. The walls
are that “thin” (25 March 1943). Those “enemies” are
very numerous: Lewin, who “knows the whole building
well” (1 October 1942), the men from the store, the
customers, the deliverymen, the agent, the cleaning
woman, the night watchman Slagter, the plumbers, the
“health service,” the accountant, the police who
conduct their searches of the premises, the neighbors
both near and far, the owner, etc. It is therefore
unlikely and inconceivable that Mrs. Van Daan had the
habit of using the vacuum cleaner each day at 12:30 pm
(5 August 1943). The vacuum cleaners of that era were,
moreover, particularly noisy. I ask: “How is that
conceivable?” My question is not purely formal. It is
not rhetorical. Its purpose is not to show
astonishment. My question is a question. It is
necessary to respond to it. That question could be
followed with forty other questions concerning noises.
It is necessary to explain, for example, the use of an
alarm clock (4 August 1943). It is necessary to
explain the noisy carpentry work: the removal of a
wooden step, the transformation of a door into a
swinging cupboard (21 August 1942), the making of a
wooden candlestick (7 December 1942). Peter splits
wood in the attic in front of the open window (23
February 1944). It involved building with the wood
from the attic “a few little cupboards and other odds
and ends” (11 July 1942). It even involved
constructing in the attic “a little compartment” for
working (13 July 1943). There is a nearly constant
noise from the radio, from the slammed doors, from the
“resounding peal” (6 December 1943), the arguments,
the shouts, the yelling, a “noise that was enough to
awaken the dead.” (9 November 1942). “A great din and
disturbance followed I was doubled up with laughter”
(10 May 1944). The episode reported on 2 September
1942 is irreconcilable with the necessity of being
silent and cautious. There we see those in hiding at
dinner. They chatter and laugh. Suddenly, a piercing
whistle is heard. And they hear the voice of Peter who
shouts through the stove pipe that he will certainly
not come down. Mr. Van Daan gets up, his napkin falls
and, his face flushed, he shouts: “I’ve had enough of
this.” He goes up to the attic and there, resistance
and the stamping of feet. The episode reported on 10
December 1942 is of the same kind. There we see Mrs.
Van Daan being looked after by the dentist Dussel. The
latter touches a bad tooth with his probe. Mrs. Van
Daan then lets out “incoherent cries of pain.” She
tries to pull the little probe away. The dentist looks
at the scene, his hands on his hips. The onlookers all
“roared with laughter.” Anne, instead of showing the
least distress in the face of these cries or this mad
laughter, declares: “It was rotten of us, because I
for one am quite sure that I should have screamed even
louder.”

The remarks that I am making here in regard to noises
I could repeat in regard to all of the realities of
physical and mental life. The Diary even presents the
peculiarity that not one aspect of the life that is
lived there avoids being either unlikely, incoherent,
or absurd. At the time of their arrival in their
hiding place, the Franks install some curtains to hide
their presence. But, to install curtains at windows
which did not have them up until then, is that not the
best means of drawing attention to one’s arrival? Is
that not particularly the case if those curtains are
made of pieces of “all different shapes, quality and
pattern” (11 July 1942)? In order not to betray their
presence, the Franks burn their refuse. But in doing
this they call attention to their presence by the
smoke that escapes from the roof of a building that is
supposed to be uninhabited! They make a fire for the
first time on 30 October 1942, although they arrived
in that place on 6 July. One asks oneself what they
could have done with their refuse for the 116 days of
the summer. I recall, on the other hand, that the
deliveries of food are enormous. In normal conditions,
the persons in hiding and their guests each day
consume eight breakfasts, eight to twelve lunches and
eight dinners. In nine passages of the book they
allude to bad or mediocre or insufficient food.
Otherwise the food is abundant and “delicious.” Mr.
Van Daan “takes a lot of everything” and Dussel takes
“enormous helpings” of food (9 August 1943) . On the
spot they make wet and dry sausages, strawberry jam,
and preserves in jars. Brandy or alcohol, cognac,
wines, and cigarettes do not seem to be lacking
either. Coffee is so common that one does not
understand why the author, enumerating (23 July 1943)
what each would wish to do on the day when they would
be able to leave that hiding place, says that Mrs.
Frank’s fondest wish would be to have a cup of coffee.
On the other hand, on 3 February 1944 — during the
terrible winter of ’43/’44 — here is the inventory of
the supplies available for those in hiding alone, to
the exclusion of any cohabiting friend or “enemy:” 60
pounds of corn, nearly 60 pounds of beans and 10
pounds of peas, 50 cans of vegetables, 10 cans of
fish, 40 cans of milk, 10 kilos of powdered milk, 3
bottles of salad oil, 4 preserving jars of butter, 4
jars of meat, 2 bottles of strawberries, 2 bottles of
raspberries, 20 bottles of tomatoes, 10 pounds of
rolled oats, and 8 pounds of rice. There enter, at
other moments, some sacks of vegetables each weighing
25 kilos, or again a sack of 19 pounds of green peas
(8 July 1944). The deliveries are made by a “nice
greengrocer,” and always “during the lunch hour” (11
April 1944). This is hard to believe. In a city
described elsewhere as starving, how could a
greengrocer leave his store, in broad daylight, with
such loads to go to deliver them to a house located in
a busy neighborhood? How could this greengrocer, in
his own neighborhood (he was “at the corner”), avoid
meeting his normal customers for whom, in that time of
scarcity, he ought normally to be a person to be
sought out and begged for favors? There are many other
mysteries in regard to other merchandise and the
manner in which it reaches the hiding place. For
holidays, and for the birthdays of the persons in
hiding, the gifts are plentiful: carnations, peonies,
narcissuses, hyacinths, flower pots, cakes, books,
sweets, cigarette lighters, jewels, shaving
necessities, roulette games, etc. I would draw
attention to a real feat achieved by Elli. She finds
the means of offering some grapes on 23 July 1943. I
repeat: some grapes, in Amsterdam, on 23 July. They
even tell us the price: 5 florins per kilo.

The invention of the “swinging cupboard” is an
absurdity. In fact, the part of the house which is
supposed to have protected the persons in hiding
existed well before their arrival. Therefore, to
install a cupboard is to point out, if not someone’s
presence, at least a change in that part of the
property. That transformation of the premises —
accompanied by the noise of the carpentry work —
could not have escaped the notice of the “enemies”
and, in particular, of the cleaning woman. And this
pretended “subterfuge,” intended to mislead the police
in case of a search, is indeed likely, to the
contrary, to put them on their guard. (” a lot of
houses are being searched for hidden bicycles,” says
Anne on 21 August 1942, and it is for that reason that
the entrance door of the hiding place had been thus
hidden.) The police, not finding any entrance door to
the building which serves as a hiding place would have
been surprised by this oddity and would have quickly
discovered that someone had wanted to fool them,
because they would find themselves before a
residential building without an entrance!

Improbabilities, incoherencies, and absurdities abound
likewise in regard to the following points: the
windows (open and closing), the electricity (on and
off), the coal (appropriated from the common pile
without the “enemies” realizing it), the openings and
closings of the curtains or the camouflage, the use of
the water and of the toilet, the means of doing the
cooking, the movements of the cats, the moving from
the front-house to the annex (and vice-versa), the
behavior of the night watchman, etc. The long letter
of 11 April 1944 is particularly absurd. It reports a
case of burglary. Let it be said in passing that the
police are there portrayed to us as stopping in front
of the “swinging cupboard,” in the middle of the
night, under the electric light, in search of the
burglars who committed the housebreaking. They rattle
the “swinging cupboard.” These police, accompanied by
the night watchman, do not notice anything and do not
seek to enter the annex! As Anne says: “God truly
protected us ”

On 27 February 1943, they tell us that the new owner
has fortunately not insisted on visiting the annex.
Koophuis told him that he did not have the key with
him, and that the new owner, although accompanied by
an architect, did not examine his new acquisition
either on that day or on any other day.

When one has a whole year to choose a hiding place
(see 5 July 1942), does one choose his office? Does
one bring his family there? And a colleague? And the
colleague’s family? Do you choose a place full of
“enemies” where the police and the Germans would come
automatically to search for you if they do not find
you at your home? Those Germans, it is true, are not
very inquisitive. On 5 July 1942 (a Sunday) father
Frank (unless it is Margot?!) received a summons from
the SS (see the letter of 8 July 1942). That summons
would not have any follow-up. Margot, sought by the
SS, makes her way to the hiding place by bicycle, and
on 6 June, when, according to the first of two letters
dated 20 June, the Jews had had their bicycles
confiscated for some time.

In order to dispute the authenticity of the story, one
could call upon arguments of a psychological,
literary, or historical nature. I will refrain from
that here. I will simply remark that the physical
absurdities are so serious and numerous that they must
have an effect on the psychological, literary, and
historical levels.

One ought not to attribute to the imagination of the
author or to the richness of her personality some
things that are, in reality, inconceivable. The
inconceivable is “that of which the mind cannot form
any likeness because the terms which designate it
involve an impossibility or a contradiction”: for
example, a squared circle. The one who says that he
has seen one squared circle, ten squared circles, one
hundred squared circles does not give evidence either
of a fertile imagination or of a rich personality.
For, in fact, what he says means exactly nothing. He
proves his poverty of imagination. That is all. The
absurdities of the Diary are those of a poor
imagination that develops outside of a lived
experience. They are worthy of a poor novel or of a
poor lie. Every personality, however poor it may be,
contains what it is proper to call psychological,
mental, or moral contradictions. I will refrain from
demonstrating here that Anne’s personality contains
nothing like that. Her personality is invented and is
as hard to believe as the experience that the Diary is
supposed to relate. From a historical point of view, I
would not be surprised if a study of the Dutch
newspapers, the English radio and Dutch radio from
June 1942 to August 1944 would prove fraud on the part
of the real author of the diary. On 9 October 1942,
Anne speaks already of Jews “being gassed” (Dutch
text: “Vergassing”)!

A study of the premises
Whoever has just read the Diary can normally only be
shocked on seeing the “Anne Frank House” for the first
time. He discovers a “glass house” which is visible
and observable from all sides and accessible on its
four sides. He discovers also that the plan of the
house — as it is reproduced in the book through the
good offices of Otto Frank — constitutes a distortion
of reality. Otto Frank had taken care not to draw the
ground floor and had taken care not to tell us that
the small courtyard separating the front house from
the annex was only 12 feet 2 inches (3.7 meters) wide.
He had especially taken care not to point out to us
that this same small courtyard is common to the “Anne
Frank House” (263 Prinsengracht) and to the house
located to the right when you look at the façade (265
Prinsengracht). Thanks to a whole series of windows
and window-doors, the people of 263 and those of 265
lived and moved about under the eyes and under the
noses (cooking odors!) of their respective neighbors.
The two houses are really only one. Besides, the
museum today connects the two houses. Furthermore, the
annex had its own entrance thanks to a door leading,
from the rear, to a garden. This garden is common to
263 Prinsengracht and to the people opposite, living
at 190 Keizersgracht. (When one is in the museum one
very distinctly sees those people at 190 and many
other addresses on Keizersgracht.) From this side (the
garden side) and from the other side (the canal side)
I counted two hundred windows of old houses from which
people had a view of the “Anne Frank House.” Even the
residents of 261 Prinsengracht could have access to
263 by the roofs. It is foolish to let yourself
believe in the least possibility of a really secret
life in those premises. I say that while taking into
account, of course, the changes made to the premises
since the war. While pointing out the view on the
garden, I asked ten successive visitors how Anne Frank
could have lived there hidden with her family for
twenty-five months. After a moment of surprise (for
the visitors to the museum generally live in a sort of
state of hypnosis), each of the ten successive
visitors realized, in a few seconds, that it was
totally impossible. The reactions were varied; with
some, dismay; with others, an outburst of laughter
(“My God!”). One visitor, no doubt offended, said to
me: “Don’t you think that it is better to leave the
people to their dreams?” No one supported the thesis
of the Diary in spite of some rather pitiful
explanations furnished by the prospectus or by the
inscriptions in the museum.

The explanations are the following:

The “enemies” finding themselves in one of the rooms
of the front house believed that the windows which
look out on the small courtyard look directly on the
garden; they were unaware therefore even of the
existence of an annex; and if they were unaware of
that, it is because the windows were hidden by black
paper, to assure the conservation of the spices stored
there;
As regards the Germans, they had never thought of the
existence of an annex, “especially as this type of
building was quite unknown to them”;
The smoke from the stove “did not draw their attention
because at that time the part (where they were
located) served as a laboratory for the small factory,
where a stove likewise must have burned every day.”
The first two of these three explanations come from a
36-page booklet, without title and without date,
printed by Koersen, Amsterdam. The last comes from the
four-page prospectus that is available at the entrance
to the museum. The content of these two publications
has received the endorsement of Mr. Otto Frank. But in
all three cases these explanations have not the least
value. The annex was visible and obvious from a
hundred aspects from the ground floor (forbidden to
visitors), from the garden, from the connecting
corridors on four levels, from the two windows of the
office on the courtyard, from the neighboring houses.
Certain of the “enemies” even had to visit there to go
to the toilet because there was nothing for that in
the front house. The ground floor of the rear house
even admitted some customers of the business. As to
the “small factory” which is supposed to have existed
“in that period,” in the very heart of that
residential and commercial neighborhood, it is
supposed to have remained for at least two years
without emitting smoke, and then, suddenly, on 30
October 1942 it is supposed to have begun again to
emit the smoke. And what smoke! Day and night! In
winter as in summer, in sweltering heat or not. In the
view of everyone (and, in particular, of “enemies”
such as Lewin who had formerly had his chemical
laboratory there), the “small factory” would have
started up again! But why did Mr. Frank strain his
wits to find that explanation, when, in other
respects, the annex is already described as a sort of
ghost-house?

In conclusion on this point, I would say that, if I am
not mistaken in denying any value in these
“explanations,” we have the right to assert:

Some facts that are very important to Mr. Otto Frank
remain without explanation;
Mr. Otto Frank is capable of making up stories, even
stupid and mediocre stories, exactly like the ones I
have pointed out in my critical reading of the Diary.
I ask that my reader remember this conclusion. He will
see below what answer Mr. Frank personally made to me,
in the presence of his wife.
For the photographic documentation concerning the
“Anne Frank House,” see Appendix 1.

Interview with Otto Frank
I had made it known to Mr. Otto Frank that with my
students I was preparing a study of the Diary. I had
made it clear that my specialty was the criticism of
texts and documents and that I needed an extended
interview. Mr. Frank granted me that interview with
eagerness, and it was thus that I was received at his
residence in Birsfelden, a suburb of Basel, first on
24 March 1977, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., then from
3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and, finally, the next day,
from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.. Actually, on the next
day the meeting place had been arranged to be in a
bank in Basel. Mr. Frank was intent upon taking out of
a safe deposit box, in my presence, what he called the
manuscripts of his daughter. Our interview was
therefore carried out on that day in part at the bank,
in part on the road back toward Birsfelden and, in
part, once more, at Mr. Frank’s residence. All the
interviews that took place at his residence were in
the presence of his wife (his second wife, since the
first died after being deported, from typhus it seems,
as did Margot and Anne). After the first minute of our
interview, I declared point blank to Mr. and Mrs.
Frank that I had some doubts about the authenticity of
the Diary. Mr. Frank did not show any surprise. He
declared himself to be ready to furnish me all of the
information I would want. I was struck, during those
two days, by the extreme amiability of Mr. Frank. In
spite of his age — 88 years — he never used the
excuse of his weariness in order to shorten our
interview. In the Diary, he is described as a man full
of charm (see 2 March 1944). He inspires confidence.
He knows how to anticipate your unexpressed desires.
He adapts himself remarkably to situations. He
willingly adopts an argument based on emotion. He
speaks very much of tolerance and of understanding. I
only once saw him lose his temper and show himself to
be uncompromising and violent; that was in regard to
the Zionist cause, which must seem sacred to him. It
was in that manner that he declared to me that he no
longer even sets foot on the soil of France because,
in his opinion, France is no longer interested in
anything except Arab oil and doesn’t care about
Israel. On only three points did Mr. Frank fail in his
promise to answer my questions. It is interesting to
know that those three points were the following:

the address of Elli, in the Netherlands;
the means of rediscovering the trail of the store
employee called V.M. in the book (I know that he is
probably named Van Maaren);
the means of rediscovering the Austrian Karl
Silberbauer who had arrested the persons in hiding on
4 August 1944.
In regard to Elli, Mr. Frank declared to me that she
was very ill and that, because she was “not very
intelligent,” she could not be of any help to me. As
to the other two witnesses, they had had enough
trouble without my going to pester them with some
questions that would remind them of an unhappy past.
To compensate for that, Mr. Frank recommended that I
get in touch with Kraler (by his real name, Kugler),
settled in Canada, and with Miep and her husband,
still living in Amsterdam.

In regard to the Diary itself, Mr. Frank declared to
me that the basis of it was authentic. The events
related were true. It was Anne, and Anne alone who had
written the manuscripts of that Diary. Like every
literary author, Anne perhaps had some tendencies
either to exaggeration or to imaginative changes, but
all within ordinary and acceptable limits, without
letting the truth or the facts suffer from it. Anne’s
manuscripts form an important whole. What Mr. Frank
had presented to the publishers was not the text of
these manuscripts, the purely original text, but a
text that he in person had typewritten: a
“tapuscript.” He had been obliged to transform the
various manuscripts in this way to a single
“tapuscript” for various reasons. First, the
manuscripts presented some repetitions. Then, they
contained some indiscretions. Then, there were
passages without any interest. Finally, there were
some omissions! Mr. Frank, noticing my surprise, gave
me the following example (a no doubt harmless example,
but are there not more serious ones that he hid from
me?): Anne very much liked her uncles but in her Diary
she had neglected to mention them among the persons
that she cherished; therefore, Mr. Frank repaired that
“omission” by mentioning those uncles in the
“tapuscript.” Mr. Frank said that he had changed some
dates! He had likewise changed the names of the
characters. It was Anne herself, it seems, who had no
doubt thought of changing the names. She had envisaged
the possibility of publication. Mr. Frank had
discovered, on a piece of paper, the list of the real
names with their equivalent false names. Anne is
supposed to have thought of calling the Franks by the
name of Robin. Mr. Frank had cut out of the
manuscripts certain indications of the prices of
things. More important, finding himself, at least for
certain periods, in possession of two different
versions of the text, it had been necessary for him to
“combine” (the word is his) two texts into one single
text. Summarizing all those transformations, Mr. Frank
finally declared to me: “That was a difficult task. I
did that task according to my conscience.”

The manuscripts that Mr. Frank presented to me as
being those of his daughter form an impressive whole.
I did not have the time to look at them closely. I
trusted in the description of them that was given to
me and I will summarize them in the following way:

The first date mentioned is that of 12 June 1942; the
last is that of 1 August 1944 (three days before their
arrest);
The period from 12 June 1942 to 5 December of the same
year (but that date does not correspond to any printed
letter); we have at our disposal a small notebook with
a linen cover, with a red, white and brown plaid
design (the “Scotch notebook”);
The period from 6 December 1942 to 21 December 1943;
we do not possess any special notebook (but see below,
the loose leaf sheets). This notebook is supposed to
have been lost;
The period from 2 December 1942 to 17 April 1944, then
for the period from that same date of 17 April (!) to
the last letter (1 August 1944); two black-bound
notebooks, covered with brown paper.
To those three notebooks and to the missing notebook
is added a collection of 338 loose leaf sheets for the
period 20 June 1942 to 29 March 1944. Mr. Frank said
that those sheets constitute a resumption and a
reshaping, by Anne herself, of letters which are
contained, in an original form, in the above-mentioned
notebooks: the “Scotch notebook,” the missing
notebook, and the first of the two black notebooks.

Up to this point the total of what Anne is supposed to
have written during her twenty-five months of hiding
is therefore in five volumes. To that total it is
appropriate to add the collection of the Stories.
These stories are supposed to have been made up by
Anne. The text is presented as a perfect copy. The
copy can only involve, to begin with, a work of
editing from a rough draft; Anne therefore must have
done a lot a scribbling!

I have no competence in the matter of handwriting
analysis and therefore I cannot express an opinion on
that matter. I can only give here my impressions. My
impressions were that the “Scotch notebook” contained
some photos, pictures and drawings as well as a
variety of very juvenile writing styles, the confusion
and fantasy of which appeared authentic. It would be
necessary to look closely at the handwriting of the
texts which were used by Mr. Frank in order to form
the basis of the Diary. The other notebooks and the
whole of the 338 loose leaf sheets are in what I would
call an adult handwriting. As regards the manuscript
of the Stories, it very much surprised me. One would
say that it was the work of an experienced accountant
and not the work of a 14-year-old child. The table of
contents is presented as a list of the Stories with
the date of composition, the title and the page number
for each piece!

Mr. Frank had a high opinion of the conclusions of the
two expert reports called for, about 1960, by the
prosecution in Lübeck in order to examine the case of
a teacher (Lothar Stielau) who, in 1959, had expressed
some doubts about the authenticity of the Diary (Case
2js 19/59, VU 10/59). Mr. Frank had registered a
complaint against that teacher. The handwriting report
had been entrusted to Mrs. Minna Becker. Mrs.
Annemarie Hübner had been charged with attesting
whether the texts printed in Dutch and German were
faithful to the texts of the manuscript. The two
expert reports, submitted as evidence in 1961, turned
out to be favorable to Mr. Frank.

But, on the other hand, what Mr. Frank did not reveal
to me — and what I had to learn after my visit, and
from a German source — is that the prosecutor in
Lübeck had decided to get a third expert report. Why a
third expert report? And on what point, given that,
according to all appearances, the whole field possible
for investigation had been explored by the handwriting
expert and by Mrs. Hübner? The answer to these
questions is the following: the prosecutor thought
that an expert report of the kind done by Mrs. Hübner
risked declaring that Lothar Stielau was right about
the facts. In view of the first analyses, it was going
to be impossible to declare that the Diary was
dokumentarisch echt (documentarily genuine) (!).
Perhaps they could have it declared literarisch echt
(literarily genuine) (!). The novelist Friedrich
Sieburg was going to be charged with answering that
odd question.

Of those three expert reports, only that of Mrs.
Hübner would have really been of interest to me. On 20
January 1978, a letter from Mrs. Hübner let me hope
that I would obtain a copy of her expert report. A
short time afterward, when Mrs. Hübner did not respond
to my letters, I had a German friend telephone her.
She made it known to him that “the question was very
delicate, given that a trial on the question of the
Diary was presently under way in Frankfurt.” She added
that she had gotten in touch with Mr. Frank. According
to the few elements that I possess of the content of
that expert’s report, it is supposed to have noted a
large number of facts that were interesting from the
point of view of the comparison of the texts
(manuscripts, “tapuscript,” Dutch text, German text).
Mrs. Hübner is supposed to have mentioned there some
very numerous “omissions” (Auslassungen), “additions”
(Zusätze), and “interpolations” (Interpolationen). She
is supposed to have spoken of the text “adapted” for
the necessities of publication (überarbeitet).
Furthermore, she is supposed to have gone so far as to
name some persons who supposedly gave their
“collaboration” (Zusammenarbeit) to Mr. Frank in his
editing of the “tapuscript.” Those persons are
supposed to have collaborated in the drawing up of the
German text, in place of contenting herself with the
role of translator.

In spite of those facts that she herself pointed out,
Mrs. Hübner is supposed to have concluded on the
authenticity of the Diary (Dutch printed text and
German printed text). She is therefore supposed to
have expressed the following opinion: “Those facts are
not important.” Now that opinion can only be her
personal view. There is the whole question: Who
assures us that quite another judgment could not be
brought forth on the facts pointed out by the expert?
And besides, to begin with, has the expert shown
impartiality and a really scientific spirit in naming
the facts as she has named them? What she has called,
for example, “interpolations” (a word with a
scientific appearance and an ambiguous significance)
would others not call them “retouchings,”
“alterations,” “insertions” (words no doubt more
exact, and more precise)? In the same fashion, words
such as “additions” and especially “omissions” are
neutral in appearance but, in reality, they hide some
confused realities: an “addition” or an “omission” can
be honest or dishonest; they can change nothing
important in a text or they can, to the contrary,
alter it profoundly. In the particular case that
interests us here, those two words have a frankly
benign appearance!

In any case it is impossible to consider those three
expert opinions (Becker, Hübner, and Sieburg) as
conclusive, because they had not been examined by a
court. In fact, for some reasons of which I am
unaware, Mr. Frank was to withdraw his complaint
against Lothar Stielau. If my information is correct,
Stielau agreed to pay 1,000 Marks of the 15,712 Marks
of the cost of the proceedings begun. I suppose that
Mr. Frank paid to the court of Lübeck those 1,000
Marks and that he had added to that sum 14,712 Marks
for his own part. I recall that Mr. Frank told me that
Lothar Stielau had, moreover, agreed to present him
with his written apology. Lothar Stielau had lost his
job as a teacher at the same time. Mr. Frank did not
speak to me about Heinrich Buddeberg, Lothar Stielau’s
co-defendant. Perhaps Buddeberg himself also had to
turn over 1,000 Marks and to present his apologies.

I linger here on these matters of expert opinions only
because in our interview Mr. Frank had himself
lingered there, while not mentioning certain important
facts (for example, the existence of a third expert
opinion), and while presenting to me the two expert
opinions as conclusive. The matter of the manuscripts
did not interest me very much either. I knew that I
would not have the time to examine them closely. What
interested me most of all was to know how Mr. Frank
would have explained to me the “unexplainable quantity
of unlikely or inconceivable facts” that I had called
attention to in reading the Diary. After all, what
does it matter that some manuscripts, even declared
authentic by some experts, contain this type of facts,
if those facts could not have existed? But Mr. Frank
was to show himself to be incapable of furnishing me
with the least explanation. In my opinion he was
expecting to see the authenticity of the Diary
questioned by the usual arguments, of the
psychological, literary, or historical order. He did
not expect arguments of internal criticism bearing on
the realities of material life: the realities which,
as one knows, are stubborn. In a moment of confusion,
Mr. Frank moreover declared to me: “But I had never
thought about those material matters!”

Before coming to some precise examples of that
confession, I owe it to the truth to say that on two
occasions Mr. Frank gave me good answers and those
were in regard to two episodes that I have not
mentioned up to now, precisely because they were to
find an explanation. The first episode was
incomprehensible to me because of a small omission
from the French translation (I did not possess at that
time the Dutch text). The second episode was
incomprehensible to me because of an error that
figures in all the printed texts of the Diary. Where,
on the date of 8 July 1944, it is a question of the
male greengrocer, the manuscript gives: “la marchande
de légumes” (the female greengrocer). And that is
fortunate, for a careful reader of the book knows very
well that the greengrocer in question could not have
delivered to those in hiding “19 pounds of green peas”
(!) on 8 July 1944 for the good reason that he had
been arrested 45 days before by the Germans for one of
the most serious of reasons (he had had two Jews at
his home). That act had set him “on the edge of an
abyss” (25 May 1944). One has a hard time
understanding how a greengrocer leaps from “the abyss”
in order to thus deliver to some other Jews such a
quantity of compromising merchandise. To tell the
truth, one does not understand very much better the
wife of that unfortunate man, but the fact is there,
the text of the manuscript is not absurd like that of
the Dutch, French, German, and English printings. The
writer of the manuscript had been more careful. It
remains that the error of the printed texts was
perhaps not an error, but indeed a deliberate and
unfortunate correction of the manuscript. We read, in
fact, in the printed Dutch text: van der groenteboer
om de hoek, 19 pond (cries Margot); and Anne answers;
Dat is aarding van hem. In other words, Margot and
Anne used the masculine on two occasions; “from the
(male) greengrocer on the corner 19 pounds,” Anne’s
answer: “That’s nice of him.” For my part, I would
draw two other conclusions from that episode:

Internal criticism bearing on the coherence of a text
allows us to detect some anomalies which are revealed
to be true anomalies;
A reader of the Diary, having come to that episode of
8 July 1944, would be right to declare absurd a book
in which the hero (“the nice greengrocer on the
corner”) leaps back out of the depths of the abyss as
one would rise up from the dead.
That greengrocer, Mr. Frank told me, was named Van der
Hoeven. Deported for having harbored Jews at his home,
he came back from deportation. At the time of the
commemorative ceremonies, he had come back to appear
at the side of Mr. Frank. I asked Mr. Frank if, after
the war, some people from the neighborhood had
declared to him: “We suspected the presence of people
in hiding at 263 Prinsengracht.” Mr. Frank clearly
answered me that no one had suspected their presence,
including the men of the store, including Lewin, also
including Van der Hoeven. The latter supposedly helped
them without knowing it!

In spite of my repeated questions on this point, Mr.
Frank was not able to tell me what his neighbors at
No. 261 sold or made. He did not remember that there
had been in his own house, at No. 263, a housekeeper
described in the book as a possible “enemy.” He ended
by answering me that she was “very, very old” and that
she only came very rarely, perhaps once a week. I said
to him that she must have been astonished to suddenly
see the installation of the “swinging cupboard” on the
landing of the second floor. He answered no, given
that the housekeeper never came there. That answer was
to provoke for the first time a kind of dispute
between Mr. Frank and his wife, who was present at our
interview. Beforehand, in fact, I had taken the
precaution of having Mr. Frank make it clear to me
that those in hiding had never done any housekeeping
outside of cleaning a part of the annex. The logical
conclusion of Mr. Frank’s two statements therefore
became: “For twenty-five months, no one had done any
cleaning of the landing on the second floor.” In the
face of that improbability, Mrs. Frank suddenly broke
in to say to her husband: “Nonsense! No cleaning on
that landing! In a factory! But there would have been
dust this high!” What Mrs. Frank could have added is
that the landing was supposed to have served as a
passageway for the people in hiding in their comings
and goings between the annex and the front house. The
trail of their goings and comings would have been
obvious in the midst of so much accumulated dust, even
without taking into account the dust from the coal
brought from downstairs. In fact, Mr. Frank could not
have told the truth when he spoke in this way about a
kind of phantom housekeeper for a house so vast and so
dirty.

On several occasions, at the beginning of our
interview, Mr. Frank thus attempted to supply some
explanations which, finally, did not explain anything
at all and which led him, to the contrary, into some
impasses. I must say here that the presence of his
wife was to prove to be especially useful. Mrs. Frank,
who was very well acquainted with the Diary, obviously
believed up to then in the authenticity of the Diary
as well as in the sincerity of her husband. Her
surprise was only more striking in the face of the
terrible quality of Mr. Frank’s answers to my
questions. For myself, I retain a painful memory of
what I would call certain “realizations” by Mrs.
Frank. I do not at all wish to say that Mrs. Frank
today takes her husband for a liar. But I claim that
Mrs. Frank was strongly conscious, at the time of our
interview, of the anomalies and of the serious
absurdities of the whole story of Anne Frank. Hearing
the “explanations” of her husband, she came to use
toward him some phrases of the following kind:

“Nonsense!”

“What you are saying is unbelievable!”

“A vacuum cleaner! That is unbelievable! I had never
noticed it!”

“But you were really foolhardy!”

“That was really foolhardy!”

The most interesting remark that Mrs. Frank made was
the following: “I am sure that the people (of the
neighborhood) knew that you were there.” For my part,
I would say rather: “I am sure that the people of the
neighborhood would have seen, heard, and smelled the
presence of the persons in hiding, if there were
indeed some persons hidden in that house for
twenty-five months.”

I would take one other example of Mr. Frank’s
explanations. According to him, the people who worked
in the front house could not see the main part of the
annex because of the “masking paper on the window
panes.” This statement, which is found in the brochure
of the “museum,” was repeated to me by Mr. Frank in
the presence of his wife. Without pausing at that
statement, I went on to another subject: that of the
consumption of electricity. I made the remark that the
consumption of electricity in the house must have been
considerable. Because Mr. Frank was surprised by my
remark, I stated it precisely: “That consumption must
have been considerable because the electric light was
on all day in the office on the courtyard and in the
store on the courtyard in the front house.” Mr. Frank
then said to me: “How is that? The electric light is
not necessary in broad daylight!” I indicated to him
how those rooms could not receive daylight, knowing
that the windows had some “masking paper” on them. Mr.
Frank then answered me that those rooms were not so
very dark: a disconcerting answer which found itself
in contradiction with the statement of the booklet
written by Mr. Frank: “Spices must be kept in the dark
” (page 27 of the 36 page booklet mentioned above on
page 82). Mr. Frank then dared to add that, all the
same, what one saw through those windows on the
courtyard was only a wall. He specified, contrary to
all evidence, that one did not see that it was the
wall of a house! That detail contradicted the
following passage of the same prospectus: “therefore,
although you saw windows, you could not see through
them, and everyone took it for granted that they
overlooked the garden” (ibidem). I asked if those
masked windows were nevertheless sometimes open, if
only for airing out the office where they received
visitors, if only in the summer, on swelteringly hot
days. Mrs. Frank agreed with me on that and remarked
that those windows must all the same have been open
sometimes. Silence from Mr. Frank.

The list of the noises left Mr. Frank, and especially
Mrs. Frank, perplexed. As regards the vacuum cleaner,
Mr. Frank was startled and declared to me: “But there
could not have been a vacuum cleaner there.” Then, in
the face of my assurance that there had been one, he
began to stammer. He told me that, if indeed there had
been a vacuum cleaner, they must have run it in the
evening, when the employees (the “enemies”) had left
the front house, after work. I objected that the noise
of a vacuum cleaner of that era would have been so
much better heard by the neighbors (the walls were
“thin,” 25 March 1943) as it would have occurred in
empty rooms or close to empty rooms. I revealed to him
that, in any case, Mrs. Van Daan, for her part, was
supposed to have used that vacuum cleaner every day,
regularly, at about 12:30 pm (the window probably
being open). Silence from Mr. Frank, while Mrs. Frank
was visibly moved. The same silence for the alarm
clock, with the sometimes untimely alarm (4 August
1943). The same silence for the removal of the ashes,
especially on swelteringly hot days. The same silence
about the borrowing, by the persons in hiding, from
the supply of coal (a rare commodity) common to the
whole house. Even silence about the question of the
bicycles used after their confiscation and after the
prohibition of their use by Jews.

A number of questions therefore remained without
answers or even at first gave rise to some
explanations by which Mr. Frank worsened his case.
Then Mr. Frank had, as it were, a windfall: a magic
formula. That formula was the following: “Mr.
Faurisson, you are theoretically and scientifically
right. I agree with you 100 percent What you pointed
out to me was, in fact, impossible. But, in practice,
it was nevertheless in that way that things happened.”
I pointed out to Mr. Frank that his statement troubled
me. I told him that it was almost as if he agreed with
me that a door could not be at the same time open and
closed and as if, in spite of that, he stated that he
had seen such a door. I pointed out to him, in another
connection, that the words “scientifically” and
“theoretically” and “in practice” were unnecessary and
introduced a distinction devoid of meaning because, in
any case, “theoretically,” “scientifically,” and “in
practice” a door at the same time open and closed
quite simply cannot exist. I added that I would prefer
to each particular question an appropriate response
or, if need be, no answer at all.

Near the beginning of our interview, Mr. Frank had
made, in the friendliest way in the world, a major
concession, a concession announced by me above on page
83. As I began to make him understand that I found
absurd the explanations that he had furnished in his
prospectuses, both regarding the ignorance of the
Germans about the architecture typical of Dutch houses
and about the presence of smoke constantly above the
roof of the annex (the “little factory”), he wanted to
admit right away, without any insistence on my part,
that it was a question there of pure inventions on his
part. Without using, it is true, the word
“inventions,” he declared to me, in substance: “You
are quite right. In the explanations that are given to
visitors, it is necessary to simplify. That is not so
serious. It is necessary to make that agreeable to
visitors. This is not the scientific way of doing
things. One is not always able to be scientific.”

That confidential remark enlightens us on what I
believe to be a character trait of Mr. Frank: Mr.
Frank has the sense of what pleases the public and he
seeks to adapt himself to it, free to take liberties
with the truth. Mr. Frank is not a man to give himself
a headache. He knows that the general public is
satisfied with little. The general public seeks a sort
of comfort, a sort of dream, a sort of easy world
where it will be brought exactly the kind of emotion
that confirms it in its habits of feeling, seeing, and
reasoning. That smoke above the roof could disturb the
general public? What does it matter? Let’s make up an
explanation not necessarily probable, but simple and,
if it is necessary, simple and crude. Perfection is
reached if that fabrication confirms some accepted
ideas or habitual feelings: for example, it is very
probable that for those who love Anne Frank and who
come to visit her house, the Germans are brutes aud
beasts; well, they will find a confirmation of that in
Mr. Frank’s explanations: the Germans went so for as
to be unaware of the architecture typical of the
houses in Amsterdam. In a general way, Mr. Frank
appeared to me, on more than one occasion, as a man
devoid of finesse (but not of cunning) for whom a
literary work is, in relation to reality, a form of
lying contrivance, a domain where one takes liberties
with the truth, a thing which “is not so serious” and
which allows for writing almost anything.

I asked Mr. Frank what explanations he could furnish
me on the two points where he agreed that he had said
nothing serious to the visitors. He could not answer
me. I questioned him about the layout of the premises.
I had noted some anomalies in the plan of the house,
such as it is reproduced – by Mr. Frank — in all the
editions of the Diary. Those anomalies had been
confirmed for me by my visit to the museum (taking
account of the changes made in the premises in order
to make it into a museum). It was then that once again
Mr. Frank went on to be led, in the face of the
physical evidence, to make some new and important
concessions to me, especially, as is going to be seen
in regard to the “swinging cupboard.” He began by
admitting that the diagram of the plan ought not to
have concealed from the reader that the small
courtyard which separates the front house from the
annex was common to No. 263 (the Frank house) and to
No. 265 (the house of their neighbors and “enemies”).
It seems bizarre that, in the Diary, there was not the
slightest allusion to the fact, which, for the persons
in hiding, was of extreme importance. Mr. Frank then
acknowledged that the diagram of the place let people
believe that on the third floor the flat roof was not
accessible; but that roof was accessible by a door
from the annex and it could very well have offered to
the police or to the “enemies” an easy way of access
into the very heart of the premises inhabited by the
persons in hiding. Finally and especially, Mr. Frank
conceded to me that the “swinging cupboard” did not
make any sense. He recognized that his ruse could not,
in any case, have prevented a search of the annex,
seeing that that annex was accessible in other ways,
and especially in the most natural way — the entrance
door leading out to the garden. That entrance, it is
true, does not appear on the schema because the schema
does not contain any drawing of the whole ground
floor. As to the museum visitors, they do not have
access to this same ground floor. That famous
“swinging cupboard” thus became a particularly strange
invention of “the persons in hiding.” One must, in
fact, think here that the making of that “swinging
cupboard” was a dangerous job. The destruction of the
stair steps, the assembling of that false cupboard,
the change of a passageway into an apparent dead end,
all that could only give warning to the “enemies.” All
that had of course been suggested by Kraler and
carried out by Vossen (21 August 1942)!

The more that my interview went on, the more the
embarassment of Mr. Frank became visible. But his
amiability did not fail; quite the contrary. At the
end, Mr. Frank went on to use a sentimental argument,
apparently clever and in a good natured tone. That
argument was the following: “Yes, I agree with you, we
were a little imprudent. Certain things were a little
dangerous, it is necessary to recognize that. Besides,
it is perhaps the reason why we were finally arrested.
But do not believe, Mr. Faurisson, that the people
were suspicious at that point.” That curious
argumentation went on to suggest to Mr. Frank
sentences such as: “The people were decent!” or even:
“The Dutch were good!,” or even, on two occasions:
“The people were good!”

These sentences have only one inconvenience: they
render absurd all of the “precautions” pointed out in
the book. To a certain extent, they even rob the book
of its meaning. The book recounts, as a matter of
fact, the tragic adventure of eight persons hunted
down, forced to hide, to bury themselves alive for
twenty-five months in the midst of a ferociously
hostile world. In those “days in the tomb” only some
select few people knew of their existence and brought
them help. One could say that in resorting to his last
arguments, Mr. Frank tried with one hand to fill in
the cracks in a work which, with the other hand, he
was dismantling.

On the evening of our first day of interviews, Mr.
Frank handed to me his own copy, in French, of the
book by Ernst Schnabel: Spur eines Kindes (French
title: Sur les traces d’Anne Frank; English title:
Anne Frank: A Portrait in Courage). He told me that I
would perhaps find in that book some answers to
certain of my questions. The pages of that copy were
not cut. It should be mentioned that Mr. Frank speaks
and understands French, but he reads it with a little
difficulty. (I should make it clear here that all our
interviews took place in English, a language that Mr.
Frank has mastered perfectly.) I had not yet read that
book, because the strict observance of the methods
proper to pure internal criticism obliges one to read
nothing about a work so long as one has not yet
personally gotten a clear idea of that work. During
the night that preceeded our second interview, I
glanced through the book. Among a dozen points that
acted to confirm to me that the Diary was a fable (in
spite of the fact that Schnabel made many efforts to
persuade us of the contrary), I call attention to an
amazing passage on page 151 of the French text. That
passage concerned Mr. Vossen, the man who, it seemed,
had devoted himself, as carpenter, to making the
“swinging cupboard” intended to conceal the persons in
hiding (Diary, 21 August 1942). “Good old Vossen” was
supposed to work at 263 Prinsengracht. He kept the
persons in hiding up-to-date on everything that took
place in the store. But illness had forced him to
retire to his home, where his daughter Elli joined him
after her own work hours. On 15 June 1943, Anne spoke
about him as a precious friend. But, if one believes a
remark of Elli reported by Schnabel, good old Vossen
was unaware of the existence of the Franks at 263
Prinsengracht! Elli recounts, in fact, that on 4
August 1944, when she returned to her residence, she
informed her father of the arrest of the Franks. The
French text of Schnabel says: “I was seated at the
side of the bed and I had told him everything. My
father very much liked Mr. Frank, whom he had known
for a long time. He was not aware that the Franks had
not left for Switzerland, as was claimed, but had
hidden themselves on the Prinsengracht.” But what is
incomprehensible is that Vossen could have believed in
that rumor. For nearly a year he had seen the Franks
at Prinsengracht, he had spoken with them, he had
helped them and he had become their friend. Then, when
because of his bad health he had left his job on the
Prinsengracht, his daughter Elli was able to keep him
up to date on the doings of his friends, the Franks.

Mr. Frank was not able to explain to me that passage
from Schnabel’s book. Rushing to the German and the
English texts of the same work, he made a surprising
discovery: the whole passage where Elli spoke with her
father did indeed appear in those texts, but, lacking
the sentence beginning with: “He was not aware ” and
ending with: ” the Prinsengracht.” In the French text,
Elli continued: II ne dit rien. Il restait couché en
silence. For comparison, here is the German text:

Ich setze mich zu ihm ans Bett und habe ihm alles
gesagt. Er hing sehr an Herrn Frank, denn er kannte
ihn lange [passage missing]. Gesagt hat er nichts. Er
hat nur dagelegen. (Anne Frank/Ein Bericht von Ernst
Schnabel, Spur eines Kindes, Fischer Bucherei, 1958,
168 pages, page 115.)

And here is the English text:

I sat down beside his bed and told him everything. He
was deeply attached to Mr. Frank, who he had known a
long time [passage missing]. He said nothing. (Anne
Frank: A Portrait in Courage, Ernst Schnabel,
Translated from the German by Richard and Clara
Winston. New York: Harbrace Paperback Library,
Harcourt, Brace and World, Inc.;1958; 181 pages; page
132.)

After returning to France, it was easy for me to clear
up this mystery: from many other points in the French
text it became evident that there had existed two
original German versions. The first version of
Schnabel must have been sent in “tapuscript” to the
French publishing house of Albin Michel so that from
it there could be prepared a translation into French,
without losing time. Thereupon Schnabel or, very
probably, Mr. Frank, had gone on to do a revision of
its text. He had then left out the problematical
sentence about Vossen. Then Fischer published that
corrected version. But in France they had done the job
in double quick time and the book had already left the
presses. It was too late to correct it. I note
moreover a bibliographical curiosity: my copy of Sur
les traces d’Anne Frank (translated from the German by
Marthe Metzger, Editions Albin Michel, 1958, 205
pages) bears a reference to “18th thousand” and its
date for the completion of printing was in February
1958. But the first thousand of the original German
edition was in March 1958. The translation therefore
did indeed appear before the original.

It remains, of course, to know why Ernst Schnabel or
Mr. Frank had believed it proper to proceed with that
amazing correction. The fact remains that Mr. Frank
showed his confusion once more in the face of this
further anomaly. We took leave of each other in the
most painful of atmospheres, where each token
friendliness that Mr. Frank showed me embarrassed me a
little more. Shortly after my return to France, I
wrote to Mr. Frank to thank him for his hospitality
and to ask him Elli’s address. He answered me
pleasantly while asking me to send him the French copy
of Schnabel’s book, and without speaking to me about
Elli. I sent his copy back to him while again asking
him for the address. No answer this time. I telephoned
him at Birsfelden. He responded to me that he would
not give me that address, and especially now that I
had sent to Kraler (Kugler) an “idiotic” letter. I
will come back to that letter.

Bibliographical examination
The previously mentioned book by Schnabel (Anne Frank:
A Portrait in Courage) has some curious omissions,
while the long article, unsigned, that Der Spiegel (1
April 1959, pages 51-55) devoted to the diary, in the
wake of the Stielau case, brings us some curious
revelations. The title of that article is eloquent:
“Anne Frank. Was Schrieb das Kind?” (“Anne Frank. What
did the Child Write?”)

Ernst Schnabel openly defended Anne Frank and Otto
Frank. His book is relatively rich on all that
precedes and on all that follows the twenty-five
months of their life at Prinsengracht. On the other
hand, it is very poor concerning those twenty-five
months. One would say that the direct witnesses (Miep,
Elli, Kraler, Koophuis, Henk) have nothing to say on
that very important period. Why do they remain silent
in that way? Why have they said only some commonplace
things like: “When we had our plate of soup upstairs
with them at noon ” (page 114)1 or: “We always had
lunch together ” (page 117)? Not one concrete detail,
not one description, not one anecdote is there that by
its preciseness would give the impression that the
persons in hiding and their faithful friends regularly
ate together this way at noon. Everything appears in a
kind of fog. But those witnesses were questioned only
thirteen years, at the most, after the arrest of the
Franks, and certain of them such as Elli, Miep and
Henk, were still young. I am not talking about
numerous other persons whom Schnabel wrongly calls
“witnesses” but who, in fact, had never known or even
met the Franks. This is the case, for example, with
the famous “greengrocer” (Gemüsemann). “He did not
know the Franks at all” (page 82). In a general way,
the impression that I derived from reading Schnabel’s
book is the following: this Anne Frank had really
existed; she had been a little girl without great
character, without strong personality, without
scholarly precociousness (to the contrary even), and
no one suspected her of having an aptitude for
writing; that unfortunate child knew the horrors of
war; she had been arrested by the Germans; she had
been interned, then deported; she passed through the
camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau; she had been separated
from her father; her mother died in the hospital at
Birkenau on 6 January 1945; in approximately October
of 1944 she and her sister were transferred to the
camp at Bergen-Belsen; Margot died of typhus; then, in
her turn, Anne, alone in the world, was also to die of
typhus in March of 1945. These are some points about
which the witnesses did not hesitate to talk. But with
all of them one senses mistrust in the presence of the
legendary Anne, who was capable of taking up the pen
as we have been told, capable of keeping that diary
and writing those stories, and writing “the beginning
of a novel,” etc. Schnabel himself writes a very
revealing sentence when he declares: “My witnesses had
a good deal to say about Anne as a person; they took
account of the legend only with great reticence, or by
tacitly ignoring it. Although they did not take issue
with it by so much as a word, I had the impression
that they were checking themselves. All of them read
Anne’s diary; they did not mention it (pages 4-5).”
That last sentence is important “All of them had read
Anne’s diary; they did not mention it.” Even Kraler,
who sent a long letter to Schnabel from Toronto, did
not make mention either of the Diary or of Anne’s
other writings (page 87). Kraler is the only direct
witness to tell an anecdote or two about Anne; but, in
a very curious way, he places these anecdotes in the
period of time when the Franks still lived in their
apartment on Merwedeplein, before their
“disappearance” (“before they went into hiding,” page
87). It is only in the corrected edition that the
second anecdote is placed at Prinsengracht, even “when
they were in the secret annex” (page 88). The
witnesses did not wish that their names be published.
The two most important witnesses (the “probable
betrayer” and the Austrian policeman) were neither
questioned nor even sought out. Schnabel attempts on
several occasions to explain that curious failure
(pages 8, 139, and all of the end of chapter ten). He
goes so far as to present a sort of defense of the
arresting officer! One person nevertheless does
mention the Diary, but that is to draw attention to a
point in it which seems bizarre to her concerning the
Montessori school of which she was the director (page
40). Schnabel himself treats the Diary strangely. How
to explain, indeed, the cutting that he does when he
cites a passage such as that of his page 123? Quoting
a long passage from the letter of 11 April 1944 in
which Anne tells about the police raid in the wake of
the burglary, he leaves out the sentence in which Anne
gives the main reason for her distress; that reason
was that the police, it appeared, went so far as to
give the “swinging cupboard” some loud blows. (“This,
and when the police rattled the cupboard door, were my
worst moments.”) Wouldn’t Schnabel have thought, like
any sensible man, that that passage is absurd? In any
case, he tells us that he visited 263 Prinsengracht
before its transformation into a museum. He did not
see any “swinging cupboard” there. He writes: “The
cupboard that was built against the door to disguise
it has been pulled down. Nothing is left but the
twisted hinges hanging beside the door.” (page 74) He
did not find any trace of a special camouflage, but
only, in Anne’s room, a yellowed piece of curtain “A
tattered, yellowed remnant of curtain still hangs at
the window.” (page 75). Mr. Frank, it seems, marked in
pencil on the wall paper, near one door, the
successive heights of his daughters. Today, at the
museum, the visitors can see an impeccable square of
wall paper, placed under glass, where they notice the
perfectly preserved pencil marks which appear to have
been drawn the same day. They tell us that these
pencil marks indicated the heights of Mr. Frank’s
children. When I saw Mr. Frank at Birsfelden, I asked
him if it was not a question there of a
“reconstruction.” He assured me all that was
authentic. But this is difficult to believe. Schnabel
himself had simply seen, as a mark, an “A 42” which he
interpreted thus: “Anne 1942.” What is strange is that
the “authentic” paper in the museum does not bear
anything such as that Schnabel said that he had seen,
only that mark and that the others had been destroyed
or torn off (“the other marks have been stripped off ”
[ibidem].) Might Mr. Frank have made himself guilty
here of a trick (ein Trick), such as that which he had
suggested to Henk and to Miep for the photocopy of
their passport?

A very interesting point about Anne’s story concerns
the manuscripts. I regret to say that I find very
unlikely the account of the discovery of those many
scripts, then their passing on to Mr. Frank by his
secretary Miep. The police supposedly scattered the
floor with all sorts of papers. Among those papers,
Miep and Elli supposedly gathered up a “Scotch
notebook” (ein rotkariertes Buch; a red plaid book)
and many other writings in which they are supposed to
have recognized Anne’s writing. They supposedly did
not read anything. They are supposed to have put all
these papers aside in the large office. Then, those
papers supposedly were handed over to Mr. Frank at the
time of his return from Poland (pages 179-181.) That
account does not agree at all with the account of the
arrest. The arrest was made slowly, methodically,
correctly, exactly like the search. The testimonies
are unanimous on that point (see chapter nine). After
the arrest, the police came back to the premises on
several occasions; they especially interrogated Miep.
The police wished to know if the Franks were in
contact with other persons in hiding. The Diary, such
as we know it, would have revealed, at first glance, a
great deal of information valuable to the police, and
would have been terribly compromising for Miep, Elli,
and for all the friends of the persons in hiding. The
police could have disregarded the “Scotch notebook”
if, in its original condition, it consisted, as I
think, only of some drawings, some photographs or
notes of a harmless nature. But it would appear
unlikely that they would have left there several
notebooks and several hundreds of scattered pages, on
which the handwriting was, at least in appearance,
that of an adult. On the part of Elli and Miep, it
would have been madness to gather together and to
keep, especially in the office, such a mass of
compromising documents. It would appear that they knew
that Anne kept a diary. In a diary one is supposed to
tell what happens from day to day. Consequently, Anne
risked mentioning Miep and Elli in them.

Regarding the book by Schnabel, Mr. Frank made a
surprising revelation to me. He told me that that
book, although translated into several languages, had
not been translated into Dutch! The reason for the
exception was that the principal witnesses living in
the Netherlands said that, because of modesty as well
as because of a concern for their peace and quiet,
they wished that people not talk about them. In
reality, Mr. Frank was mistaken or else he was
deceiving me. An investigation conducted in Amsterdam
at first led me to believe that Schnabel’s book had
not been translated into Dutch. Even the Contact
publishing house replied or had several libraries or
several private individuals reply that that book did
not exist. I discovered then that, in a showcase at
the “Anne Frank House” museum, the book by Schnabel
was shown as having been translated into Dutch and
published in 1970 (twelve years after its publication
in Germany, in France and in the United States!) under
the title of: Haar laatste Levensmaanden (Her Last
Months). The book unfortunately was not to be found. I
got the same responses from the libraries and from the
Contact publishing house. As a result of my
insistence, Contact finally replied to me that there
remained with them only one archive copy. With some
difficulty I got permission to consult it, and then to
get a photocopy of pages 263 to 304. For, in reality,
the work in question contained only an extract from
Schnabel’s book, reduced to 35 pages, and placed as an
appendix to the text of the Diary. The comparative
study of Spur eines Kindes and of its “translation”
into Dutch is of the greatest interest. Of the book by
Schnabel, the Dutch can only read the five last
chapters (out of thirteen chapters in all). Moreover,
three of those five chapters have undergone cuts of
all sorts. Certain of those cuts are marked by
ellipses. Others are not marked at all. The chapters
thus cut up are Chapters Nine, Ten and Thirteen —
which is to say those that concern, on the one hand,
the arrest and its direct results (in the Netherlands)
and, on the other hand, the history of the
manuscripts. When it is no longer a question of those
subjects, when it is a question of the camps (which is
the case in Chapters Eleven and Twelve), the original
text by Schnabel is respected. Examined closely, those
cuts seem to have been introduced to remove the
somewhat precise details which appear in the
testimonies of Koophuis, Miep, Henk, and Elli. For
example, it lacks, without anything to indicate to us
the existence of a cut, the essential passage where
Elli tells how she told her father about the arrest of
the Franks (the 13 lines of page 115 of Spur are
completely absent from page 272 of Haar Laatste
Levensmaanden). It is odd that the only nation for
whom they have thus reserved a censored version of the
life of Anne Frank is precisely that one where the
adventure of Anne Frank took place. Can you imagine
some revelations about Joan of Arc that would be made
to all sorts of foreign nations, but would be
forbidden in some way to the French people? Such a way
of acting is understandable only when the editors fear
that, in the country of origin, the “revelations”
would have rather quickly appeared suspect. That
explanation given by Mr. Frank hardly holds. Because
Koophuis, Miep, Henk, and Elli find themselves named
anyhow (moreover by some complete or partial
pseudonyms), and because Schnabel has them make such
and such remarks, one does not see how the cuts
introduced into those remarks can soothe the sensitive
modesty of their authors or assure them more
tranquility in their life in Amsterdam. I would
believe rather that the preparation of the Dutch
translation gave rise to some very long and arduous
bargaining among all the interested parties or, at
least, between Mr. Frank and some of them, but, as the
years passed, they became more cautious and more
sparing with details than in their original
“testimonies.”

The above-mentioned articles from Der Spiegel brings
us, as I have said, some curious revelations. As a
matter of principle I distrust journalists. They work
too quickly. Here it is obvious that the journalist
carried out a thorough investigation. The issue was
too burning and too sensitive to be treated lightly.
The conclusion of the long article could indeed be the
following: While suspecting the Diary of being a
forgery, Lothar Stielau perhaps proved nothing, but
all the same he “ran into a really tricky problem —
the problem of the genesis of the publishing of the
book” (auf ein tatsächlich heikles Problem gestossen
— das Problem der Enstehung der Buchausgabe, page
51). And it is revealed that we are very far from the
text of the original manuscripts when we read in
Dutch, in German, and in whatever language, the book
entitled The Diary of Anne Frank. Supposing for a
moment that the manuscripts are authentic, it is
necessary to be aware that as a matter of fact what we
read under that title, for example in Dutch (that is
to say in the supposedly original language), is only
the result of a whole series of operations of
reorganizing and rewriting, participated in especially
by Mr. Frank and some close friends, among whom were
(for the Dutch text) Mr. And Mrs. Cauvern and (for the
German text) Anneliese Schütz, whose pupil Anne had
been.

Between the original form of the book (the
manuscripts) and its printed form (the Dutch edition
from Contact in 1947), the text has known at least
five forms in succession.

between the end of May 1945 and October 1945, Mr.
Frank had drawn up a sort of copy (Abschrift) from the
manuscripts, in part alone, in part with the help of
his secretary Isa Cauvern (the wife of Albert Cauvern,
a friend of Mr. Frank; before the war, the Cauverns
had welcomed the Frank children to their home for
vacations).
from October 1945 to January 1946, Mr. Frank and Isa
Cauvern worked together on a new version of the copy,
a typed version (Neufassung der
Abschrift/Maschinengeschriebene Zweitfassung).
at an unspecified date (the end of the winter of
1945-1946), that second version (typed) was submitted
to Albert Cauvern; insofar as he was a radio man — an
announcer with the “De Vara” radio network in
Hilversum — he knew about rewriting manuscripts.
According to his own words, he began by “tolerably
changing” that version; he drew up his own text as a
“man of experience” (Albert Cauvern stellt heute nicht
in Abrede, dass er jene maschinengeschriebene
Zweitfassung mit kundiger Hand redigiert hat: “Am
Anfang habe ich ziemlich viel geändert,” page 52.) A
detail that is surprising for a diary: he does not
fear to regroup under a single date some letters
written on different dates; on a second occasion he
limited himself to correcting the punctuation as well
as mistakes of phrasing and grammar; all those changes
and corrections were carried out on the typed text;
Albert Cauvern never saw the original manuscripts.
from the changes and corrections, Mr. Frank drew up
what one can call the third typed text in the spring
of 1946; he submitted the result to “three prominent
experts” (drei prominente Gutachter, page 53), while
letting them believe that it was a question of the
complete reproduction of a manuscript, with the very
understandable exception of some personal points of
order; then, those three persons having apparently
given their guarantee to the text, Mr. Frank went on
to offer it to several publishing houses in Amsterdam
which refused it; turning then, in all probability, to
one of those three persons, Mrs. Anna
Romein-Verschoor. He got the latter’s husband, Mr. Jan
Romein, Professor of History of the Netherlands at the
University of Amsterdam, to write in the daily
newspaper Het Parool a famous article which began with
these words: “There has by chance fallen into my hands
a diary (etc.)”. Because the article was very
laudatory, a modest Amsterdam publishing house
(Contact) asked to publish that diary.
with the agreement once concluded or in the process of
being concluded, Mr. Frank went to find several
“spiritual counselors” (mehrere geistliche Ratgeber),
one of whom was Pastor Buskes; he granted them full
authority to censor the text (raumte ihnen freiwillig
Zensoren-Befugnisse ein, pages 53-54). And that
censorship was carried out.
But the oddities do not end there. The German text of
the Diary forms the subject of interesting remarks on
the part of the journalist from Der Spiegel. He
writes: “One curiosity of the ‘Anne Frank literature’
is the translation work of Anneliese Schütz, of which
Schnabel said: ‘I would wish that all translations
were so faithful,’ but whose text very often diverges
from the Dutch original” (page 54). In fact, as I will
show below (“Comparing the Dutch and German texts” on
page 100), the journalist is quite lenient in his
criticism when he says that the German text diverges
very often from what he calls the original (that is to
say, without doubt, from the original printed by the
Dutch). The printed German text does not have the
right to be called a translation from the printed
Dutch: it constitutes, properly speaking, another book
by itself. But let us pass over this point. We will
return to it.

Anneliese Schütz, a great friend of the Franks, like
them a Jewish German refugee in the Netherlands, and
Anne’s teacher, therefore prepared a text, in German,
of the diary of her former pupil. She settled down to
that work for Anne’s grandmother! The latter, very
aged, did not in fact read Dutch. She therefore needed
a translation into German, the Franks’ mother tongue.
Anneliese Schütz composed her “translation” “in the
perspective of the grandmother” (aus der
Grossmutter-Perspektive, page 55). She took some
amazing liberties. Where, according to her
recollections, Anne had expressed herself better, she
made her express herself better! The grandmother had
the right to that! die Grossmutter habe ein Recht
darauf, mehr zu erfahren — vor allem dort, “wo Anne
nach meiner Erinnerung etwas besseres gesagt hatte”
(ibidem). Let it be said in passing that Anneliese
Schütz is never mentioned by Anne Frank in the Diary.
Are we to understand that she had lived close to Anne
or that she had met her during the twenty-five months
when she hid at the Prinsengracht? To the “perspective
of the grandmother,” which dictated certain
“obligations,” there was added what one can call the
“commercial perspective” which dictated other
obligations. As a matter of fact, when the time came
to publish the Diary in Germany, Anneliese Schütz
inserted some new alterations. Let us take an example
that she herself mentions. The manuscript, they say,
included the following sentence: ” no greater
hostility in the world than between the Germans and
the Jews” (ibidem). Anneliese Schütz declared to the
journalist of Der Spiegel: “I always told myself that
a book, destined to be sold in Germany, cannot contain
an expression insulting to the Germans” (ibidem). For
my part, I would say that that argumentation at one
and the same time of the commercial, sentimenta,l and
political order is understandable when coming from a
woman of Berlin Jewish origin, who had been a militant
before the war in a suffragette movement and who had
had to leave her own country for political reasons,
but otherwise that argumentation is all the less
acceptable because the “insulting” remarks have been
and continue to be spread in the millions of copies of
the Diary sold throughout the world in languages other
than German. And I am not speaking here from the
simple point of view of respect for the truth.

One does not have the impression that Mr. Frank’s
“collaborators” in the publishing of the diary were
especially pleased with their work, nor that they were
especially delighted about the fuss made about that
Diary. Let us take those collaborators one by one:
about Isa Cauvern, we can say nothing, except that she
committed suicide by throwing herself out of her
window in June of 1946. Mr. Frank had just signed or
was going to sign his contract for publication with
Contact. The motive for that suicide is not known to
us and it is at present impossible to establish a tie
of some kind between that suicide and the affair of
the Diary. As regards the person who wrote the
preface, Anna Romein-Verschoor, she was to declare to
Der Spiegel in 1959: “I was not at all suspicious
enough” (Ich bin wohl nicht misstrauisch genug
gewesen). Her husband had been no more suspicious.
Albert Cauvern had not been able to obtain from Mr.
Frank the return of the typed text on which he had
worked. He had asked for that text “in memory of my
wife” who died in 1946. Mr. Frank had not sent the
text in question. Kurt Baschwitz, a friend of Mr.
Frank, was one of the “three eminent persons” (the two
others being Mr. and Mrs. Romein). In 1959, he was to
plead for an “agreement” between Mr. Frank and Lothar
Stielau. He recommended, on the other hand, a complete
publication of the text of the manuscripts to resolve
the problem. To know what the text was in reality,
that solution would have been, as a matter of fact,
that most suitable. Anneliese Schütz, for her part,
was to show her disapproval both of the “Anne Frank
Myth” and of the attitude of Mr. Frank with regard to
Lothar Stielau. She was in favor of a policy of
silence: the least fuss possible about Anne Frank and
her diary. She went so far as to disapprove of Mr.
Frank and Ernst Schnabel for Spur eines Kindes: what
need was there for that book? As regards to Stielau,
if he had made the remark for which Mr. Frank
criticized him for, latter had only to act as if he
did not hear it. That “sharp” (scharff) (ibidem)
reaction by Anneliese Schütz was all the more peculiar
because this woman presented herself as the
“translator” of the diary into German and because
Ernst Schnabel had — but perhaps she did not know it
— pushed kindness so far as to have declared with
regard to that improbable “translation”: Ich wünschte,
alle Übersetzungen waren so getreu (page 54) (“I would
wish that all translations were so faithful”).

Return to Amsterdam
The internal criticism of the Diary had led me to
think that the Diary was a “cock and bull story,” a
novel, a lie. The subsequent investigations had only
served to reinforce that judgment. But, if I indeed
saw where the lie was, I did not see as well where the
truth was. I saw indeed that the Frank family could
not have lived for twenty-five months at 263
Prinsengracht in the way they claimed. But how had
they lived in reality? Where? With whom? And finally,
was it indeed at 263 Prinsengracht that they had been
arrested?

Without any illusions about the answer that he would
give me, I posed those questions to Kraler (by his
real name, Kugler) in a letter that I sent to him in
Canada. I asked him likewise if Anne appeared to him
to have been the author of the Diary and how he could
explain to me why Vossen (by his real name, Voskuyl)
had believed that the Franks were somewhere other than
at 263 Prinsengracht, and even in Switzerland, to be
precise. His response was discourteous. He sent my
letter and his response to Mr. Frank. It is that
letter which Mr. Frank called “idiotic” during a
telephone conversation. It is, I suppose, that
response which, one year later, earned Kraler a prize
of $10,000.00 from an institution for having
“protected Anne Frank and her family during the war,
in Amsterdam” (see the Hamburger Abendblatt, 6 June
1978, page 13). Disregarding its discourtesy, the
response from Kraler was not lacking in interest for
me. Kraler responded to me that Vossen’s suggestion
concerning the presence of the Franks in Switzerland
“was made to protect the family which was in hiding”
(letter of 14 April 1977). He added, in regard to
Anne, “there have been other greatly gifted young
people, even younger than Anne.” I found that the
first point of this answer was precise but
incomprehensible if one recalls that Vossen had,
according to his own daughter, the personal feeling
that the Franks were in Switzerland. As to the second
point of the answer, its stereotyped character was
striking coming from a man whose only difficulty ought
to have been in choosing among several precise and
convincing answers. Kraler, as a matter of fact, was
supposed to have lived for 25 months in almost daily
contact with that Anne Frank whose “diary” was an open
secret, it seems, for those who knew her.

Listening to Elli on 30 November 1977, then to Miep
and Henk on 2 December 1977, I was struck right away
with the impression that these three persons had not
at all lived for 25 months in contact with the Franks
and with the other persons in hiding in the manner in
which this is presented to us in the Diary. On the
other hand, I became convinced that Miep and Elli had
at least been present at 263 Prinsengracht on 4 August
1944, at the time of the police raid. It is difficult
for me to account otherwise for the insistence with
which Elli and Miep avoided my questions on the 25
months, while coming back over and over again to the
day of 4 August 1944. Elli, of whom I had much
difficulty in finding any trace, expected neither my
visit, nor the type of detailed questions I was going
to put to her. Miep and Henk were expecting my visit
and knew that I had seen Mr. Frank. My questions were
brief, limited in number, and, with certain
exceptions, I did not point out to my witnesses either
their mutual contradictions or their contradictions
with the Diary. Elli, full of good will, seemed to me
to have a good memory of the war years and of the
minor events of her daily life in those days (she was
23 years old in 1944). But, in regard to those
twenty-five months, her answers to my questions were
for the most part: “I do not know I do not recall I
cannot explain to you ” “The coal storage place? It
was in the Van Daans’ room.” “The ashes? I suppose
that the men took them down.” “The night watchman
Slagter? I have never heard him spoken of; after the
war, we had a secretary who had that name.” “Lewin? I
never had anything to do with him.” “The ‘swinging
cupboard’? You are right, it was useless, but it was a
camouflage for strangers.” I asked Elli to describe to
me first the front house, then the annex. For the
front house, she was able to give me some details; it
is true that she worked there. For the annex, her
answer was interesting. She declared to me that she
had, all in all, spent only one night there, and that
before the arrival of the eight clandestines! She
added that she did not remember the premises, because
she had been very nervous. But, in the Diary, Elli is
supposed to have come to take almost all of her
mid-day meals with the people in hiding (see 5 August
1943: Elli arrives regularly at 12:45 pm; 20 August
1943: she arrives regularly at 5:30 pm as a messenger
of freedom; 2 March 1944: she does the dishes with the
two families’ mothers). In conclusion, I asked Elli to
recall for me any detail of family life, any anecdote
which does not appear in the book. She showed herself
to be totally incapable of doing that.

Miep and Henk were likewise incapable of furnishing me
with the least detail on the life of the people in
hiding. The most important sentence of their testimony
was the following: “We did not know exactly how they
lived.” And in addition: “We were only in the annex
for one weekend; we slept in the future room of Anne
and Dussel.” “How did the persons in hiding keep them
selves warm? Perhaps with gas.” “The coal storage
place was downstairs in the store.” “There was no
vacuum cleaner.” “The greengrocer did not bring
anything to Prinsengracht.” “‘The ‘swinging cupboard’
had been constructed well before the arrival of the
Franks” (!) “I myself, Miep, I brought the vegetables,
while Elli brought the milk.” “I myself, Henk, worked
elsewhere than in the business, but every day I came
to have lunch in the office of the girls and I came to
speak to them for 15 or 20 minutes.” (This point,
among others, is in total contradiction with the
Diary, where it is said that Henk, Miep and Elli took
their lunch in the annex, with the people in hiding.
See 5 August 1943.) During our entire interview, Miep
gave me the impression of being almost in agony. Her
gaze avoided me. When I finally let her speak to me
about 4 August 1944, her attitude suddenly changed
completely. It was with obvious pleasure that she
began to call to mind, with a great abundance of
details, the arrival of the police and its results. I
noted, however, a striking disproportion in the
details of the account. Those details were numerous,
vivid, and obviously truthful when Miep was calling to
mind what had personally happened to her with the
Austrian arresting officer, Silberbauer, either that
day or on the following days. But, when it was a
question of the Franks and of their companions in
misfortune, the details became scanty and unclear.
Thus it was that Miep had seen nothing of the arrest
of the persons in hiding. She had not seen them leave.
She had not seen them climb into the police vehicle,
because that vehicle, which she had seen through the
window of her office, “was too near the wall of the
house.” From a distance from the other side of the
canal, Henk had seen the police vehicle, but without
being able to recognize the people who were entering
or leaving. In regard to the manuscripts, Miep
repeated to me the account that she had given to
Schnabel. She told me also that Mr. Frank, after
returning to the Netherlands at the end of May of
1945, lived for seven years under their roof. It was
only toward the end of June or the beginning of July
of 1945 that she had returned the manuscripts to him.

In the wake of those two interviews my judgment became
the following: These three persons must have, on the
whole, told me the truth about their own lives. It is
probably true that they had not been familiar with, so
to speak, the annex. It is certainly true that, in the
front house, life unfolded approximately as they had
recounted it to me (mid-day meal taken together in the
office of the secretaries; the men of the store eating
in the store; small food errands made in the
neighborhood, etc.). It is certainly true that a
police raid took place on 4 August 1944 and that Miep
had had business on that day and on the following days
with a Karl Silberbauer. It is probable, on the other
hand, that those three persons maintained some
relations with the Frank family. In that case, why did
they so obviously feel reticent to speak about it? Let
us suppose, as a matter of fact, that the Franks and
some other persons in hiding had really lived for 25
months in proximity to those three persons. In that
case, why such a silence?

The answer to these questions could be the following:
the Franks and, perhaps, some other Jews did actually
live in the annex of 263 Prinsengracht. But they lived
there quite differently than the Diary relates. For
example, they lived a life there that was no doubt
cautious, but not like in a prison. They were able to
live there as did so many other Jews who hid
themselves either in the city, or in the countryside.
They “hid themselves without hiding.” Their adventure
was sadly commonplace. It did not have that fantastic,
absurd, and obviously deceitful character that Mr.
Frank had wanted to pass off as being realistic,
authentic, and true to life. After the war, just as
the friends of Mr. Frank were prepared to testify on
his behalf, so were they hesitant to guarantee the
narrative of the Diary. Just as much as they were able
to offer themselves as guarantors of the real
sufferings of Mr. Frank and of his family, so did it
seem difficult for them to bear witness, in addition,
to imaginary sufferings. Kraler, Koophuis, Miep, Elli,
and Henk showed their friendship to Mr. Frank; they
publicly showed their sympathy for him as for a man
full of charm and, at the same time, overwhelmed with
misfortunes. Perhaps they felt flattered to be
presented in the press as his companions in his days
of misfortune. Perhaps certain among them accepted the
idea that, when a man has suffered, he has the moral
right to exaggerate somewhat the story of his
sufferings. In the eyes of certain of them, the main
point could have been that Mr. Frank and his family
had had to suffer cruelly at the hands of the Germans;
in that case the “details” of those sufferings
mattered little. But kindness has its limits. Mr.
Frank found only one person to guarantee his account
of the existence of the Diary. That person was his
former secretary and friend: Miep Van Santen (by her
real name, Miep Gies). Still the testimony of Miep is
strangely hesitant. Her testimony comes back to saying
that after the arrest of the Franks, she had gathered
up from the floor of a room of the annex a diary, an
account book, some notebooks and a certain number of
loose leaf sheets. For her it was a matter of objects
belonging to Anne Frank. Miep only gave that testimony
in an official form thirty years after the events, on
5 June 1974, in the office of Mr. Antoun Jacob Dragt,
a notary in Amsterdam. Miep added that she had made
the discovery with Elli. But, on the same day, in the
presence of the same notary, the latter declared that
she remembered having been there when those things had
been discovered but she did no more remember exactly
how they had been discovered. The restraint is
important and it must not have pleased Mr. Frank.

Schnabel wrote (see above, page 91) that all the
“witnesses” he had questioned — including,
consequently, Miep, Elli, Henk, and Koophuis – had
behaved as if they had to protect themselves against
the legend of Anne Frank. He added that if they all
had read the Diary, they nevertheless did not mention
it. That last sentence means obviously that, in each
interview with a witness, it was Schnabel himself who
had to take the initiative in speaking of the Diary.
We know that his book had not been published in the
Netherlands, except in a shortened and censored form:
it is in the Netherlands that the principal
“witnesses” are located. For its part, the article
from Der Spiegel (see above, page 95) proves that
others of Mr. Frank’s “Witnesses” have ended up having
the same negative reactions. The foundations of the
myth of Anne Frank — a myth that rests on the truth
and authenticity of the Diary — have not been
strengthened with time: they have crumbled.

Who betrayed the Franks?
The “betrayer” and the person who arrested the Franks:
why has Mr. Frank wanted to assure them anonymity?

Since 1944, Mr. Frank and his friends knew that their
alleged “betrayer” was named Van Maaren and the person
who arrested them was named Silberbauer. Van Maaren
was one of the employees in their store. Silberbauer
was a non-commissioned officer of the Security Service
(SD) in Amsterdam. In the Diary, as well as in the
previously mentioned book by Schnabel, Van Maaren is
called V.M. As regards Silberbauer, he is called
Silberthaler in Schnabel’s book. It seems that, at the
time of the Liberation, Van Maaren had some trouble
with the law in his country. His guilt could not be
proved, Mr. Frank told me. “V.M. had had enough
troubles like that and he should be left alone.”
Schnabel had not wanted to obtain the testimony of
V.M. nor had he wanted to obtain that of the arresting
officer.

In 1963, the world press suddenly echoed with a
startling news story: Simon Wiesenthal had just
rediscovered the person who arrested the Franks. He
was Karl Silberbauer, a police official in Vienna.
Wiesenthal had not informed Mr. Frank about his
research. The latter, questioned by journalists,
declared that he had known for nearly twenty years the
name of the person who arrested him. He added that
that entire affair was unfortunate and that
Silberbauer had only done his duty in arresting him.
Miep, for her part, declared that, if she had used the
pseudonym of Silberthaler to designate the arresting
officer, that was only at the request of Mr. Frank;
the latter had pointed out that there could, as a
matter of fact, be some other persons bearing the name
of Silberbauer to whom, consequently, some harm could
be done: (De Heer Frank) had mij verzocht de naam
Silberthaler te noemen, omdat er misschien nog meer
mensen Silberbauer heetten en die zouden wij dan in
diskrediet brengen (Volkskrant, 21 November 1963).

There was a kind of struggle between Simon Wiesenthal
and Mr. Frank. It was the latter who in a way got the
best of it. As a matter of fact, Karl Silberbauer was,
at the end of eleven months, reinstated in the
Viennese police. A disciplinary commission, sitting
behind closed doors (as is the custom), released him.
The judgment in the appeal commission
(Oberdisziplinarkommission) was likewise favorable to
Silberbauer, as were also conclusions of a commission
of inquiry of the Ministry of the Interior.
Silberbauer had indeed arrested the Franks at 263
Prinsengracht, but his participation in “War crimes
against the Jews or members of the Resistance” could
not be proved. In June of 1978, I obtained an
interview with Simon Wiesenthal in his office in
Vienna. In regard to that affair, he declared to me
that Mr. Frank was “crazy.” In his opinion, Mr. Frank,
in his concern to maintain a cult (that of his
daughter), meant to spare the former Nazis, while he,
Simon Wiesenthal, had only one concern: that of seeing
justice done. Simon Wiesenthal did not know the real
name of the store employee V.M. There again Mr. Frank
had done what was necessary: the Royal Institute of
Documentation (for the Second World War), directed by
his friend Louis De Jong, responded, if we are to
believe an Amsterdam newspaper (Trouw, 22 November
1963), that that name would not be given to Mr.
Wiesenthal, even if he asked for it: deze naam zou men
zelfs aan Mr. Wiesenthal niet doorgeven, wanneer deze
daarom zou verzoeken.

The authorities in Vienna were not able to authorize
me to consult the records of the commissions of
inquiry. As to Karl Silberbauer, he died in 1972. My
inquiry was therefore limited to the analysis of some
Dutch, German, and French newspapers from 1963 and
1964 and to the interviewing of a witness whom I
believe to be well informed, honest, and possessed of
a good memory. That witness begged us, my companion
and myself, not to reveal his name. I have promised to
say nothing about his name. I will keep my promise
only half-way. The importance of his testimony is such
that it seemed impossible to me to pass over it in
silence. The name of that witness and his address as
well as the name of my companion and his address are
put down in a sealed envelope.

Here is, to begin with, what I would call: “The
testimony of Karl Silberbauer, collected by a Dutch
journalist of the Hague Post and translated into
German by a Jewish German journalist of the Allgemeine
Wochenzeitung der Juden in Deutschland (6 December
1963, page 10).” Silberbauer recounts that at the time
(4 August 1944) he had received a telephone call from
an unknown person who had revealed to him that some
Jews remained hidden in an office on Prinsengracht: “I
then alerted eight Dutchmen of the Security Service
(SD) and went with them to Prinsengracht. I saw that
one of my Dutch companions tried to speak to an
employee but the latter made a gesture with his thumb
toward the upstairs.” Silberbauer described how he
entered the place where the Jews kept themselves
hidden: “The people ran in all directions and packed
their suitcases. One man then came toward me and
presented himself as being Otto Frank. He had been, he
said, a reserve officer in the German Army. To my
question about the length of time that they had been
in hiding, Frank had answered: ‘Twenty-five months.’
Seeing that I did not want to believe him, Silberbauer
continued, he took the hand of a young girl who stood
at his side. That must have been Anne. He placed the
child against the side post of a door, which bore some
marks in various places. I spoke again to Frank: ‘What
a pretty girl you have there!'” Silberbauer said then
that he had only very much later made the connection
between that arrest and what the newspapers said about
the Frank family. After the war, his reading of the
Diary surprised him very much. He especially did not
understand how Anne could have known that the Jews
were gassed: “We were all unaware,” Silberbauer
explained, “of what awaited the Jews. I especially do
not understand how Anne in her diary could assert that
the Jews were gassed.” In the opinion of Silberbauer,
nothing would have happened to the Franks if they had
not kept themselves hidden.

That exclusive interview with Silberbauer constitutes
a very faithful summary, I think, of the remarks
attributed by the journalists to the person who
arrested the Frank family. The testimony that I
announced above (page 99) confirms in general the
content of the interview, with the exception that the
episode of the raised thumb would be a sheer
fabrication. Silberbauer supposedly noted nothing of
the kind, for the good reason that he is supposed to
have made his way immediately toward the annex. He did
nothing but take the corridor and the stairway,
without any detour toward the offices or the stores.
And it is there that the testimony in question
furnishes us with an important element. One will have
noticed that, in his interview, the policeman does not
state precisely how he had access to the place where
those in hiding kept themselves. He does not mention
the existence of a “swinging cupboard” (ein drehbares
Regal). But my witness is quite positive: Silberbauer
had never encountered anything of the kind, but a
heavy wooden door like one finds at the entrance, for
example, of a storehouse. The exact word was ein
Holzverschlag. The policeman had simply knocked at the
door and it had been opened to him. A third point of
this testimony is, if possible, still more important.
Karl Silberbauer said and repeated that he did not
believe in the authenticity of the famous Diary,
because, according to him, there had never been on the
site anything that would resemble the manuscripts that
Miep claimed to have found scattered about the floor
one week after 4 August 1944. The policeman had the
professional habit of carrying out arrests and
searches since before the war. Such a pile of
documents would not have escaped his notice. (Let us
add here that eight men accompanied him and that the
entire operation had been conducted slowly and
correctly and then the policeman, after having
entrusted the key to the premises to V.M. or to
another employee, had returned to the premises on
three occasions.) Silberbauer, the witness asserts,
had the habit of saying that Miep had not, in reality,
played a great role in that whole story (whence comes
the fact that they had not even arrested her).
Afterwards, Miep had tried to give herself some
importance, notably with that episode of the
miraculous discovery of the manuscripts.

The same witness declared to me, in the presence of my
companion, that Silberbauer in 1963-1964 had drawn up
an account, for the courts, of the arrest of the
Franks and that those details might appear, in that
account. A second witness certainly could have given
me very valuable testimony on the statements of
Silberbauer, but that second witness preferred to say
nothing.

Comparing the Dutch and German texts
I have two texts in front of me. The first is in Dutch
(D), while the second is in German (G). The publishers
tell me that D is the original text, while G is the
translation of that original text. I do not have a
priori any reason to challenge their word. But
scientific rigor, as well as common sense and
experience, teach that it is necessary to receive the
statements of publishers with caution. It happens, as
a matter of fact, that there can be error or deceit on
their part. A book is a piece of merchandise like any
other. The label can be deceiving about the content.
As a consequence, I will set aside here the labels
that are proposed to me or that are imposed upon me. I
will speak neither about the “original version in
Dutch,” nor about the “translation into German.” I
will temporarily suspend all judgment. I will grant a
precise name to those two books only with
reservations. For the moment, I will give them a name
which is, at the same time, equal and neutral. I will
therefore speak of “texts.”

I am going to describe the text D and the text G that
I have before me. I am going to begin with text D, but
I could, just as well, begin with text G. I insist on
this last point. The order of succession that I have
chosen here ought not to imply any succession in time,
nor any relationship of filiation of the father/son
kind between D and G.

My text D is presented in this manner: Anne Frank /
Het Achterhuis / Dagboekbrieven / 14 Juni 1942-1
Augustus 1944/1977. Amsterdam: Uitgeverij Contact;
Eerste druk 1947 / Vijfenvijftigste druk 1977. The
author’s text begins on page 22 with the photographic
reproduction of a sort of dedication signed: “Anne
Frank, 12 Juni 1942.” On page 23 appears the first of
the 169 entries which make up this “diary” to which
they have given the title The Annex. The book has 273
pages. The last page of the text is page 269. I
estimate the length of the text itself at about 72,500
Dutch words. I have not compared the text of that 55th
edition with the text of the first edition. At the
time of my investigation in Amsterdam, I received
assurances from Messrs. Fred Batten and Christian Blom
that no change had been made in the successive
editions. Those two persons were employed by the
Contact publishing house and they were involved, along
with Mr. P. De Neve (deceased), in the original
acceptance of the typed manuscript that Mr. Frank had
deposited with an interpreter by the name of Mr. Kahn.
It is this Mr. Kahn who was, in 1957, to serve as the
companion and interpreter for Ernst Schnabel, when the
latter came to see Elli in Amsterdam.

My text G is presented in this manner: Das Tagebuch
der Anne Frank / 12 Juni 1942-1 August 1944/1977.
Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag / No. 77 / Ungekürzte
Ausgabe/43. Auflage 1293000-1332000 / Aus dem
Holländischen ubertragen von Anneliese Schütz /
Holländische Original-Ausgabe, Het Achterhuis.
Amsterdam: Contact. After the dedication page, the
first of the entries appears on page 9. There are 175
entries. The last entry ends on page 201. I estimate
the length of the text at about 77,000 German words.
The book has 203 pages. This paperback was first
published in March 1955. Fischer obtained the
Lizenzausgabe (distribution license) from the
Lambert-Schneider publishing house, in Heidelberg.

I call attention to a first troubling fact. Text D has
169 entries while text G, which is presented as the
translation of text D, has 175 entries.

I call attention to a second troubling fact. I set out
in search of the extra entries of text G. It is not
six entries that I discover (175 minus 169 equals 6),
but seven entries. The explanation is the following:
text G does not have the entry of 6 December 1943 from
text D.

I point out a third troubling fact. Because the Dutch
language and the German language are very close to
each other, the translated text ought not to be
appreciably longer than the text that is being
translated. But, even if I disregard the number of
words that make up the seven entries in question, I am
very far from reaching a difference of approximately
4,500 (G 77,000 minus D 72,500 equals 4,500).
Therefore, text G even when it has some entries in
common with text D, has them under another form. Here
are the figures:

[table omitted]

Referring to Table 1, we see that if text G had the
same number of entries as text D, the discrepancy in
the word count would be approximately 4,500 minus
2,930, or 1,570 words.2 In reality, as will be seen
later on, this number represents only a small part of
the surplus of words that text G has. But, meanwhile,
in order not to seem too attached to the calculations,
I am going to give some precise examples involving
approximately 550 words.

Among the entries that texts D and G apparently have
in common, here are some entries (among many others)
where text G has some extra fragments, that is to say
some fragments with which the Dutch reader was never
acquainted:

[table omitted]

Among the entries that texts D and G apparently have
in common, here are some entries (among many others)
where text G is missing some fragments, that is to say
some fragments with which the German reader was never
acquainted:

[table omitted]

One remarkable fact is that the fragments that are
missing are very numerous and very short. For example,
the letter of 20 August 1943 is cut by 19 words in
text G, and those 19 words are distributed in the
following manner:

3 + 1 + 4 + 4 + 7 = 19

I call attention to a fourth troubling fact. That fact
is independent of the quantities that are extra or
lacking. This fact is that some fragments of entries
move somehow. For example, the entire next-to-the-last
paragraph of text D of Donderdag, 27 April 1944 is
found in the last paragraph of text G of Dienstag, 25
April 1944. On the 7th of January 1944, the last
paragraph of text D becomes, in text G, the sixth
paragraph before the end. On 27 April 1944, the
next-to-the-last paragraph of text D becomes, in text
G, the last paragraph of the entry of 25 April 1944.

I call attention to a fifth troubling fact. It is not
a question, this time, of additions, of subtractions,
of transferrals, but of alterations that are the sign
of inconsistencies. I mean to say this: suppose that I
leave aside all the features by which texts D and G
differ so obviously from one another, and suppose that
I turn now toward what I would call “the remainder” (a
“remainder” which, according to the publishers, ought
to make up “the common stock,” “the identical part”),
I am surprised to find out that, from one end to the
other of these two books, except with the rarest
exceptions, this “remainder” is very far from being
identical. As is going to be seen by the examples that
follow, these inconsistencies cannot be attributed to
a clumsy or whimsical translation. The same entry of
10 March 1943 gives, for text D, Bij kaarslicht (by
candlelight) and, for text G, Bei Tage (By daylight);
een nacht (one night) for Eines Tages (one day);
Verdwenen de dieven (the robbers disappeared) for
schwieg der Larm (the noise became quiet). On 13
January 1943, Anne said that she rejoiced at the
prospect of buying after the war nieuwe kleren en
schoenen (some new clothes and shoes); that is in text
D, because in text G she speaks of neue Kleider und
Bücher (of new clothes and books). On 18 May 1943,
Mrs. Van Daan is als door Mouschi gebeten (as if
bitten by Mouschi [the cat]); that is in text D,
because in text G she is wie von einer Tarantel
gestochen (as if stung by a tarantula). Depending on
whether one consults D or G, a man is a “fascist” or a
Riese (giant) (20 October 1942). Some “red beans and
some white beans” (bruine en witte bonen) become
“white beans” (weisse Bohnen) (12 March 1943). Some
sandals for 6.5 florins become some sandals without
indication of price (ibidem), while “five hostages”
(een stuk of 5 gijzelaars) has become “a certain
number of these hostages” (eine Anzahl dieser
Geiseln), and that in the same entry of 9 October 1942
where “the Germans” (Duitsers) are no more than “these
Germans” (diese Deutschen) who are very specifically
the Nazis (see above, page 95). On 17 November 1942,
Dussel meets the Franks and the Van Daans in their
hiding-place. Text D says that “Miep helped him to
take off his overcoat” (Miep liet hem zijn jas
uitdoen); learning that the Franks are there, “he
nearly fainted from surprise” and, says Anne, he
remained “silent” “as if he wanted first a little
time, a moment, to read the truth on our faces” (viel
hij haast fiauw van verbazing sprakeloos alsof hij
eerst even goed de waarheid van onze gezichten wilde
lezen); but text G says of Dussel that he “had to take
off his overcoat” and describes his astonishment in
this way: “he could not understand he was not able to
believe his eyes” (Er musste den Mantel ausziehen
kannte er es nicht fassen und wollte seinen Augen
nicht trauen). A person who suffered from an eye
problem and who “bathed it with camomile tea” (bette
het met kamillen-the) becomes a person who “made
himself some compresses” (machte Umschläge) (10
December 1942). Where “Papa” alone is waiting (Pim
verwacht) it is “we” all who are waiting (Wir
erwarten) (27 February 1943). Where the two cats
receive their names of Moffi and Tommi, according to
whether they appear boche (German) or angliche
(English), “just as in politics” (Net als in de
politek), text G says that they were named “according
to their spiritual dispositions” (Ihren Anlagen
gemäss) (12 March 1943). On 26 March 1943, some people
who “were quite awake” (waren veel wakken) “were in an
endless fear” (schreckten immer wieder auf), “a piece
of flannel” (een lap flanel) becomes a “mattress
cover” (Matratzenschoner) (1 May 1943). “To go on
strike” (staken) “in many areas” (in viele gebieden)
becomes: “sabotage is committed on all sides” (an
allen Ecken und Enden sabotiert wird) (ibidem). A
“folding bed” (harmonicabed) is encountered as a
“loungechair” (Liegestuhl) (21 August 1942). The
following sentence: “The gunfire no longer did
anything to us, our fear had gone away” (Het kanonvuur
deerde ons niet meer, onze angst was weggevaad)
becomes: “and the situation, for today, was saved”
(und die Situation war für heute gerettet) (18 May
1943).

I had noted these few examples in inconsistencies in
the course of a simple sample that did not go beyond
the 54th entry of text D (18 May 1943). I decided then
to initiate a much more rigorous sample, bearing on
the eleven entries going from 19 July to 29 September
1943 (entries 60 to 73). To the inconsistencies, I
decided to add the additions and the subtractions. The
result was such that the simple enumeration of the
differences noted would require several typewritten
pages. I am not able to do that here. I will content
myself with only a few examples here, avoiding the
most striking ones because, unfortunately, the most
striking are also the longest ones to cite.

Entry of 19 July 1943 “parents killed” (dode ouders)
becomes “parents” (Eltern);
Entry of 23 July 1943: G has, in addition, at least 49
words plus 3 words;
Entry of 26 July 1943: G has, in addition, four plus
four words and is lacking two words: over Italie;
Entry of 29 July 1943: G has twenty words missing and
“twenty years” (twintig jaar) becomes “twenty-five
years” (25 Jahren);
Entry of 3 August 1943: this letter of 210 words in
text G is completely missing in text D;
Entry of 4 August 1943: D gives “couch” and G
“loungechair.” In D a flea “floats” (drijft) in the
wash water, “only in warm months or weeks” (allen in
de hete maanden of weeken), while for G that flea must
“lose his life” (sein Leben lassen) there, without any
other detail concerning weather. D gives: “to use some
cotton [soaked] in hydrogen peroxide (that serves to
bleach her black moustache fuzz)” (waterstofwatjes
hanteren [dient om zwarte snorharen te bleken]), while
G gives simply: “and other little toiletry secrets “)
(und andere kleine Toilettengehemniss ). The
comparison of “like a brook falling from a mountain”
(als een beekje van een berg) becomes “like a brook on
the boulders” (wie ein Bächlein über die Kiesel). Some
“irregular French verbs”: this is what Anne thinks of
in text D (aan Franse onregalmatige wekworden), but,
in text G, this can only be about irregular Dutch
verbs, it seems, because she says that she “dreams”
(träume ich) of “irregular verbs” (von unregelmässigen
Verben). Text G contents itself with: “Rrrrrrring,
upstairs [sounds the Van Daans’] alarm” (Krrrrrrrr,
oben der Wecker) , while D gives: “Rrrring the little
alarm [sounds], which at each hour of the day (when it
is wanted or sometimes also without being wanted can
raise its little voice.” (Trrr het wekkertje, dat op
elk uur van de dag [als men er naar vraagt of soms ook
sonder dat] zijn stemmetje kan verheffen);
Entry of 5 August 1943: all of it is a description of
the usual meal, from 1:15 pm to 1:45 pm, and of the
things that follow, and there are important
differences; besides, what is announced, by D, as “The
great share-out” is announced by G as “small lunch”
(De grote uitdeling/Kleiner Lunch). I underline the
adjectives; the possible, but not certain, irony of D
has disappeared in G. Of the three “couches” in D,
there only remains one “couch” in G;
Entry of 7 August 1943: this letter constitutes quite
an interesting puzzle. A very long letter, it begins,
in text G, with nine lines introducing a story of 74
lines entitled Kaatje as well as another story of 99
lines entitled Katrientje. This entry is completely
absent from D. The Dutch, for their part, know of
these stories only by way of a separate book entitled
Stories, in which there appear, besides, some other
“unedited stories” of Anne Frank;
Entry of 9 August 1943: among many other curious
things there are “some horn-rimmed glasses” (een
hoornen bril) which become “some dark horn-rimmed
glasses” (eine dunkle Hornbrille) in text G;
Entry of 10 August 1943: the “war material” of D
becomes the “guns” (Kanonen) of G. The sentence
concerning the bell in the Westertoren is entirely
different. And, especially, G has an episode of 140
words that does not appear in D. Anne, who has
received some new shoes, tells there about a series of
misadventures that had happened to her on that same
day: she had pricked her right thumb with a large
needle; she had bumped her head against the door of
the cupboard; because of the noise caused, she
received a “scolding” (Ruffel); she was not able to
soothe her forehead because it was necessary not to
turn on the water; she had a large bruise over her
right eye; she had stubbed her toe on the vacuum
cleaner; her foot became infected, it is all swollen.
Result: Anne cannot put on her pretty new shoes. (You
will have noticed here the presence of a vacuum
cleaner in a place where silence would have had to be
necessary constantly);
Entry of 18 August 1943: among nine differences, we
see some “beans” (bonen) turn into “green peas”
(Erbsen);
Entry of 20 August 1943: I will mention only one
example of a difference; it concerns the bread; the
narrative is appreciably different, and for text D,
this bread is located in two successive places: at
first the steel cupboard of the office looking out on
the street (in the front house), then, the kitchen
cupboard of the annex (stalen kast,
Voorkantoor/Keukenkast), while G only mentions the
first location, without being precise about the
second; the unfortunate thing is that the first
location mentioned by D is a simple cupboard located
in the office looking out on the courtyard: the office
of Kraler, and not that of Koophuis (“the bread, which
is put in Kraler’s room for us every day”)! (About the
respective offices of Kraler and of Koophuis, see the
entry of 9 July 1942.) There is here a serious
material contradiction between the two texts, with
changes of words, of sentences, etc.;
Entry of 23 August 1943: among other curious things,
“to read or to study” (lesen of leren) becomes “to
read or to write” (lesen oder schreiben), “Dickens and
the dictionary” (Dickens en het woordenbook) becomes
only “Dickens”, some “bolsters” (peluwen) turn into
“eiderdown pillows” (Plumeaus) (in Dutch, “eider-down
pillows” would be said as eiderdons or dekbed);
Entry of 10 September 1943: among five differences, I
notice that the broadcast, so eagerly awaited each
day, from Radio Oranje (the Voice of Holland from
overseas) begins at 8:15 pm for D and at 8:00 pm for
G;
Entry of 16 September 1943: “ten valerianes” (tien
valeriaantjes) become “ten of the small white pills”
(zehn von den kleinen weissen Pillen). “A long face
and a drooping mouth” (een uitgestreken gezicht en
neerhangende mond) became “a tight-lipped mouth with
worry lines” (einen zusammengekniffennen Mund und
Sorgenfalten). The winter compared to a fearful
obstacle, a “biting winter” which is there like a
“heavy block of stone” (het grote rotsblok, dat winter
heet), is no more than a simple winter (dem Winter).
An “overcoat” (jas) becomes “hat and cane” (Hut und
Stock). A sentence of 24 words, claiming to describe a
picturesque scene, finds itself reduced to five German
words. On the other hand, six Dutch words become 13
German words with a very different meaning;
Entry of 29 September 1943: “a grumbling father” (een
mopperenden vader) becomes “the father who is not in
agreement with her choice” (den Vater, der nicht mit
ihrer Wahl einverstanden ist). “Energetically”
(energiek) becomes ganz kalt und ruhig (in a quite
cold and quiet manner), etc.
I think that it is useless to pursue such an
enumeration. It is not exaggerated to say that the
first entry of the collection gives us the tone of the
whole. In that short letter, the Dutch learn that, for
her birthday, Anne received “a little plant” (een
plantje). The Germans have the privilege of learning
that that plant was “a cactus” (eine Kaktee). In
return, the Dutch knew that Anne received “two peony
branches,” while the Germans must content themselves
with knowing that there were “some peony branches”
(einige Zweige Pfingstrosen). The Dutch have the right
to the following sentence: “such were, that morning,
the children of Flora who sat on my table” (dat waren
die ochtend de kinderen van Flora, die op mijn tafel
stonden). In the German text, the table has
disappeared, as well as “the childen of Flora” (a
curious, hackneyed phrase from the pen of a child of
thirteen; one would have expected it rather from an
adult seeking laboriously and artlessly to “decorate”
his style). The Germans simply have the right to:
“These were the first flowers offered by way of
greetings” (Das waren die ersten Blumengrüsse). The
Dutch learn that Anne, on that day, will offer to her
teachers and to her classmates “some butter cakes”
(boterkoekjes). The Germans have the right to some
“candy” (Bonbons). The “chocolate,” present for the
Dutch, will disappear for the Germans. More
surprising: a book that Anne will be able to buy for
herself with the money that has just been given to her
on that Sunday 14 June 1942, becomes, in the German
text, a book that she has already bought for herself
(zodat ik me kan kopen/habe ich mir gekauft).

On the other hand, the last entry of the collection is
identical in the two texts. That confirms for us, if
there were need for it, that the German translator —
if one must speak about “translation” — was quite
capable of respecting the Dutch text. But it is too
evident now that one cannot speak of translation, nor
even of “adaptation.” Is it to translate, is it to
“adapt” to put day for night (10 March 1943)? Books
for shoes (13 January 1943)? Candy for butter cakes
(14 June 1942}? Giant for fascist (20 October 1942)?
Is “candles” translated by “day” and “cats” by
“tarantula”? “To float” by “to die”? “Large” by
“small” (4 August 1943)? Only magicians can change an
overcoat into a hat and a cane. With Mrs. Anneliese
Schütz and Mr. Frank, the table disappears (14 June
1942) and the stairway steals away (the Dutch entry of
16 September 1943 mentions a very peculiar stairway,
which would have led directly to the persons in
hiding: die direct naar boven leidt). The bread
storage place changes its location. What is behind is
encountered again in front (Kraler’s office). Numbers
appear and disappear. Hours change. Faces change.
Events multiply or disappear. Beings as well as things
are subject to eclipses and to sudden changes. Anne,
one could say, emerges from her tomb in order to come
to lengthen one of her narratives or to shorten it;
sometimes she writes another or even reduces it to
nothingness.

Ten years after her death, Anne’s text continues to
change. In 1955, the Fischer publishing house
publishes her Diary. as a pocket-book under a
“discreetly” reworked form. The reader could
especially compare the following entries:

9 July 1942: Hineingekommen gemalt war (25 words)
replaced by: Neben gemalt war (41 words). The
appearance of a door!
11 July 1942: bange replaced by besorgt;
21 September 1942: gerügt replaced by gescholten and
drei Westen changing itself into drei Wolljacken;
27 September 1942: mit Margot bin ich nicht mehr so
intim becomes: mit Margot verstehe mich nicht sehr
gut;
28 September 1942: bestürzt replaced by erschüttert;
7 November 1942: ohne den Hergang zu kennen becomes:
ohne zu wissen, worum es ging and Er ist mein Ideal
becomes: Er ist mein leuchtendes Vorbild. That last
change of the text is not lacking in flavor, if one
knows that it is a question here of Anne’s father. Mr.
Frank is no longer an “ideal” for his daughter, but “a
shining model”! Another change: ‘und das Ärgste ist
becomes: und am schlimmsten ist;
7 August 1943: I pointed out above (see page 104) this
very long letter that contains two stories. I suppose
that these stories existed in the manuscript which had
been reserved for them and that they had been wrongly
inserted into the Diary. In that case, one asks
oneself who wrote the nine lines of introduction,
where Anne asks her correspondent especially if she
believes that her stories are going to please
children.
These last changes were made from one German text to
another German text. They could therefore not have the
excuse of a clumsy or whimsical translation. They
prove that the Diary’s author — the term that I
ordinarily use for the person responsible for the text
that I am reading — was still alive in 1955. In the
same way, in discovering the German text of 1950
(Lambert-Schneider edition), I discovered that the
author of the Diary (an especially prolific author)
was still alive in 1950. That author could not have
been Anne Frank, who, as we know, died in 1945.

In any comparisons of the texts, I have followed the
official chronological order. I have shown how the
text printed in Dutch (1947) clashed with the first
printed German text (1950), which, in its turn,
underwent some strange metamorphosis in the second
printed German text (1955). But, scientifically
speaking, nothing proves that the chronological order
of publication reflects the chronological order of
composition. For example, there could have been some
manuscript in German which preceded the putting
together of the Dutch manuscripts. It could be that
the model or the “first edition” outline had been
written in German. It could be that afterwards that
model or that outline, after having given birth to a
text translated into Dutch, had also given birth to an
entirely rewritten German text. It could be that, for
several years, some very different texts had thus
lived in symbiosis. That phenomenon is called the
phenomenon of contamination. It is nevertheless clear
that Mr. Frank cannot make that argument about the
contamination of the texts, because there exists,
according to him, one single text: that of the Dutch
manuscripts. For certain periods of the twenty-five
months at the Prinsengracht, it is possible that the
different manuscripts of the Diary offer us some
variant readings; still, those variant readings could
not provide us with the innumerable absurdities and
inconsistencies that we have seen. For other periods,
such as that of an entire year (from 6 December 1942
to 21 December 1943), when, according to Mr. Frank’s
own admission, we have at our disposal only one
version, there ought not to exist the slightest
variant reading, not the slightest disagreement
between text D and text G. It is for that reason that
I chose from that period the largest number of my
examples of inconsistencies.

I have noticed, in my samplings, neither more nor
fewer inconsistencies for that period than for the
other periods. In a uniform way, text D presents us an
Anne Frank who has, if not the traits, at least fits
the stereotype of the young adolescent, while text G
offers us the stereotype of the adolescent already
near, in certain respects, to being a mature woman.
There are, in text G, some passages that are
incompatible with the corresponding passages of text
D, and even formally incompatible with the entire
substance of all of text D. There we reach the height
of the intolerable in the manipulation of texts. Here
is, for example, the letter of 5 January 1944. Anne
confesses that before her time in hiding, that is to
say, before the age of thirteen, she had happened,
while spending the night at the home of a girlfriend,
to feel the need to kiss her: ” I had a strong desire
to kiss her, and I did do so ” (een sterke behoefte
had haar te zoenen en dat ik dat ook gedaan her). In
text G there appears a girl of thirteen who is
appreciably more knowing. Here, Anne asked her comrade
for a night if, as a token of their friendship, they
could feel each others breasts. But the comrade
refused. And Anne, who appears to have practice in the
matter, adds: “I still found it pleasant to kiss her
and I did it” (fragte ich sie, ob wir als Beweis
unserer Freundschaft uns gegenseitig die Brüste
befühlen wollten, aber sie weigerte sich. Ich fand es
immer sch…n, sie zu küssen, und habe es auch getan).
On the sexual feelings of Anne, I recommend likewise
the comparative reading of texts D and G for 7 January
1944.

It is astonishing that the Dutch reader had been
deprived of so many revelations reserved by Mr. Frank
and Anneliese Schütz for Anne’s grandmother, who was
so “aged” (see above, page 95). What of the
revelations again in text G on musical tastes or on
musical knowledge that the Dutch did not have the
right to know (for what reason, after all?)! Text G of
the letter of 9 June 1944 reserves for us the sole
rights to a dissertation of 200 words on the life of
Liszt (treated, by a very feminist Anne, as a
“petticoat chaser”/Schürzenjäger), of Beethoven,
Wagner, Chopin, Rossini, Mendelssohn. Many other names
are mentioned: Hector Berlioz, Victor Hugo, Honoré de
Balzac The entry of 20 February 1944 (220 words) is
absent from text D. It contains however some elements
of very great importance from many points of view.
Dussel has the habit of whistling das Violin-Konzert
von Beethoven; the use of time on Sundays is revealed
to us; it must be recognized that one point, at least,
about that use of time is more than troubling: Mr.
Frank in overalls, on his knees, brushing the carpet
with such enthusiasm that the entire room is filled
with clouds of dust (Vater liegt im Overall auf den
Knien und bürstet den Teppich mit solchem Elan, dass
das ganze Zimmer in Staubwolken gehüllt ist). In
addition to the noise that such an operation would
cause in a place where even at night, when the
neighbors are not there, it is necessary not to cough,
it is obvious that the scene is described by someone
who could not have seen it: a carpet is never brushed
in that way on the floor of a room, in the very place
where it became dusty. In the entry of 3 November
1943, a fragment of 120 words, which is missing in
text D, reveals to us another case of the carpet being
brushed each evening by Anne in the Ofenluft (the air
from the stove), and that because the vacuum cleaner
(der Staubsauger) ist kaputt (that famous vacuum
cleaner which, according to Mr. Frank, could not have
existed; see above, page 88). Concerning Anne’s
knowledge or ideas on the subject of historical or
political events, one will make some discoveries in
the entries of 6 June, 13 June and 27 June 1944. On
Peter’s character one will find some revelations in
the entry of 11 May 1944. That entry of 400 words does
not exist in text D. But nevertheless, in text D, we
find a letter at that date of 11 May; however, the
corresponding text is dated, in text G, on 12 May!
Peter defies his mother while calling her “the old
lady” (Komm mit, Alte!). Nothing like the Peter of
text D!

It would be interesting to subject each of the
principal characters of text D and of text G to
analysis by psychologists or psychiatrists. Anne, in
particular, would appear under some profoundly
contradictory character traits. But this is purely
hypothetical. I think that in fact those analysts
would see that Anne has no more real consistency than
a total invention of unrelated facets. The few
so-called descriptions of Anne that I have been able
to find have especially convinced me that their
authors have read the Diary very superficially. It is
true that the dullness of their descriptions could be
explained by the dullness of the subject described.
One stereotype calls for another, as one lie calls for
another.

The language and the style of text D strive to be
characteristic of a young adolescent, innocent and
awkward. The language and the style of text G strive
to be characteristic of an adolescent already close,
in certain respects, to being a woman. That is evident
simply from the parts of the texts that I have
mentioned — parts that I did not choose, however,
with a view to studying the language and the style of
the two Anne Franks.

Mr. Frank has indulged in some storytelling. That is
easily established when one sees how he has
transformed the printed German text of 1950
(Lambert-Schneider) in order to make from it the text
printed by Fischer (1955). It was on that occasion, in
particular, that he made his daughter Anne say that
her father is her “ideal” (1950 version); then, after
thinking it over, that he is her “shining model” (1955
version). This inclination for storytelling did not
come to Mr. Frank all at once. He had, we are told by
one of Anne’s former teachers, the harmless
idiosyncrasy of composing stories and poems with his
daughter (“Sometimes she told me stories and poems
which she had made up together with him ,” Anne Frank:
A Portrait in Courage, page 41). That happened about
1940. Anne was eleven years old and her father was 51.
In 1942, Mr. Frank, a former banker in Frankfurt and a
former merchant and businessman in Amsterdam, took a
forced retirement at the age of 53. I do not think
that his inclination for writing had disappeared then
during his long days of inactivity. In any case, the
Diary hardly gives us any information about what Mr.
Frank did with his days. But what does it matter! Mr.
Frank is a storyteller who has given himself away. The
drama of storytellers is that they add more to their
stories. They never stop retouching, reworking,
cutting out, correcting. By doing this they end up
incurring the distrust of certain people. And it is
child’s play for those people to prove the
storytelling. It is very easy to confound Mr. Frank.
It is sufficient to have at hand text D and one of the
two different versions of text G. It is enough to
remind him that he had declared in writing to the
Dutch: “I guarantee to you that here, on such and such
a date, Anne wrote: day or shoes or butter cakes or
fascist or large,” while to the Germans he has gone on
to declare in writing regarding the same places and
the same dates: “I guarantee to you that Anne wrote:
night or books or candy or giant or small.” If Mr.
Frank told the truth in the first case, he told a
story in the second case. And vice-versa. He has told
a story either here, or there. Or again — and this is
the most probable – he has made up the story here and
there. In any case, one could never claim that Mr.
Frank, in this affair of the Diary, is a man who has
told the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
truth.

The Diary cannot be in any way authentic. Consultation
with allegedly authentic manuscripts is unnecessary.
As a matter of fact, no manuscript in the world could
certify that Anne Frank succeeded in the miraculous
feat of writing two words at the same time and — what
is more — two words with incompatible meanings, and
— even more — two complete texts at the same time,
which are most of the time totally contradictory. It
is well understood that every printed text can have a
critical apparatus with its variant readings, its
explanatory notes, its indications of the existence of
possible interpolations, etc. But I have already said
(see above, page 106) that where one has at one’s
disposal only one manuscript, there are no longer any
possible variant readings (barring specific cases:
difficulties in deciphering a word, errors in
preceding editions, etc.). And when one has at one’s
disposal several manuscripts (two, at the most, for
certain periods of the Diary; perhaps three in some
very limited cases), it is sufficient to eliminate
those periods and those cases in order to confine
oneself strictly to the periods and to the cases where
it is necessary to be contented with a single
manuscript (here, the period from 6 December 1942 to
21 December 1943).

To the hypothesis, henceforth inconceivable, according
to which there would exist an authentic manuscript, I
say that none of the printed texts can claim to
reproduce the text of the manuscript. The following
table establishes, in fact, that the Fischer edition
of 1955 comes in the eighth position in the order of
succession of the varying forms of the Diary. To
understand this table, refer especially to the
discussion starting on page 93.

(‘Official’) Chronological table of successive forms
of the text of the Diary
The manuscript of Anne Frank;
Copy by Otto Frank, then by Otto Frank and Isa
Cauvern;
New version of the copy by Otto Frank and Isa Cauvern;

New-new version of the copy by Albert Cauvern;
New-new-new version by Otto Frank;
New-new-new-new version by Otto Frank and the
“Censors”;
Contact edition (1947);
Lambert Schneider edition (1950), radically different
from the preceding one, and even incompatible with it;

Fischer edition (1955) taking up again the preceding
one in a “discreetly” (?) reworked and retouched form.

One could, of course, claim that 5was perhaps only a
very faithful copy of 4. The same for 7in relation to
6. That would be to suppose that Mr. Frank, who
reworked this text constantly, had suddenly refrained
from doing it at the moment of recopying text 4without
any witness, and at the moment of the probable
correction of the printer’s proofs for 7. Personally,
I maintain these nine stages as a minimum to which it
is necessary indeed to add one, two or three “copies”
for text 8.

The only interest in a study of the manuscripts
allegedly by Anne Frank would be to bring to light
some elements still more crushing for Mr. Frank: for
example, some letters or fragments of letters that
have never been published (the reasons for
nonpublication should be inquired into closely,
without trusting in the reasons given by Mr. Frank,
which always have a very suspicious sentimental
coloring); for example also, some very changeable
names for Anne’s “correspondents” (the idea of showing
her always addressing herself to the same “dear Kitty”
seems to be a belated idea), etc.

The reasoning which would consist of claiming that in
the Diary there would exist nevertheless a basis of
truth would be a reasoning without value. First,
because it would be necessary to know that truth or to
be able to distinguish it in the jumble of the obvious
fictions; the lie is, most often, only the art of
adapting the truth. Then, because a work of the mind
(as, for example, the editing of a “diary”) is not
defined by a basis, but by a unity of forms: the forms
of a written expression, the forms which an individual
has given to it once and for all, for better or for
worse.

The reasoning which would consist of saying that there
have only been some hundreds of changes between such
and such form of the Diary is fallacious. The word
“changes” is too vague. It allows, according to the
taste of each person, all sorts of condemnations or,
especially, all sorts of excuses. Furthermore, a
change can involve, as we have seen, a single word or
a text of 1,600 words!

For my part, I have called attention to several
hundreds of changes, only between the Dutch text and
either of the two texts — which differ from each
other — that have been published in Germany. I call
those changes: additions, subtractions, transferences,
and alterations (by substitutions of one word for
another, of one group of words of another — these
words and these groups of words being incompatible
with each other, even if indeed, by the rarest
exception, the meaning could be maintained). The whole
of these changes must affect approximately 25,000 [3]
words of the Fischer text which itself must be 77,000
words (that is, in any case, the number which I take
for a base).

The French translation of Het Achterhuis can be called
a “translation” in spite of the absence of one of the
169 entries of the Dutch Contact edition and
notwithstanding indeed some weaknesses and also some
bizarre things which lead one to think that there
still could be some troublesome discoveries to be
made. (Journal de Anne Frank, Het Achterhuis,
translated from the Dutch by T. Caren and Suzanne
Lombard, Calmann-Levy, 1950, printed 5 January 1974,
320 pages.) The Lambert Schneider edition cannot in
any event be presented as a translation. As to the
Fischer edition, it cannot call itself a reproduction
of the Lambert Schneider edition, nor a translation of
Het Achterhuis.

That impressive ensemble of additions, subtractions,
transferences, alterations; those fictions of Mr.
Frank; those dishonesties of the editors; those
interventions of outsiders, friends of Mr. Frank, the
existence of two such different books presented as one
and the same Diary of Anne Frank — all these reveal a
work which cannot, in any way, retain the prestige
attached to an authentic testimony. The
inconsistencies of the various texts are of all kinds.
They concern the language and the style, the length
and the form of the pieces that make up the Diary, the
number and the kind of anecdotes reported, the
description of the premises, the mention of material
realities, the dialogues, the ideas exchanged, the
tastes expressed; they concern the very personalities
of the principal characters, to begin with the
personality of Anne Frank, a personality which gives
the impression of living in a world of pure fiction.

While offering himself as personal guarantor of the
authenticity of this work, which is only fiction, Mr.
Frank, who has besides obviously intervened at all
stages of the genesis of the book, has signed what it
is appropriate to call a literary fraud. The Diary of
Anne Frank is to be placed on the already crowded
shelf of false memoirs. Our post-war period has been
fertile in works or writings of this kind. Among those
false, apocryphal, or suspicious works (either
entirely, or by insertions of foreign elements) one
can mention: the various “testimonies” of Rudolf
H…ss, Kurt Gerstein, Miklos Nyiszli, Emmanuel
Ringelblum, the memoirs of Eva Braun, Adolf Eichmann,
Walter Schellenberg, but also the document entitled:
“Prayer of John XXIII for the Jews.” One must mention
especially the false diaries fabricated by the Jewish
Historical Institute in Warsaw and denounced by the
French historian Michel Borwicz, of Polish Jewish
origin; among those diaries could appear that of one
Therese Hescheles, age thirteen.[4]

l would take care not to forget that one of the most
celebrated forgeries was fabricated against the Jews:
the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. I ask that people
not misunderstand the direction that I have given to
my research on the authenticity of the Diary of Anne
Frank. Even if my personal conviction is that the work
comes from Mr. Frank; even if I think that at the rate
of two letters per day, three months would have been
enough for him to prepare the first version of his
clumsy fiction; even if I think that he did not
believe that his work would know such an immense
success (which, at the same time, would risk causing
its terrible faults to become evident); even if I
think that one can then find many extenuating
circumstances for him; even if I have the conviction
that he did not at all seek to make up a vast hoax,
but that he found himself dragged along by
circumstances to guarantee all the extraordinarily
brilliant results of a humble and banal undertaking —
in spite of all that, the truth obliges me to say that
The Diary of Anne Frank is only a simple literary
fraud.

French editor’s postscript (1980)
The report that you have just read was not destined
for publication. In the mind of Professor Faurisson,
it only constituted one piece, among others, of a work
that he intended to devote to The Diary of Anne Frank.

We publish it today — in spite of the reticence of
its author who, for his part, would have hoped for a
more extended publication including some elements
which are still being worked on because the French
press and the foreign press have created an uproar
about the professor’s opinion on the Diary of Anne
Frank. The public itself may feel the need to judge
these pieces. We have thus wished to put the essential
part of these pieces at its disposal. You can thus
make for yourself your own judgments on Faurisson’s
methods of work and on the results to which they had
led him by August of 1978.

This report, in the exact form [5] (see next page)
under which we publish it, already has an official
existence. It was in August of 1978 that it was sent,
in its German version, to the lawyer Jürgen Rieger to
be presented as evidence at a court in Hamburg. Mr.
Rieger was and still remains today the defender of
Ernst Remer, subjected to a trial for having publicly
expressed his doubts on the authenticity of the Diary.

The court, after having heard the parties and having
begun to examine the basis of the litigation, decided,
to everyone’s surprise, to adjourn any new session
sine die.

According to the usual scenario, from the time the
trial opened the press dictated to the court the
conduct to follow. The Social Democratic Party of
Chancellor Helmut Schmidt went into the front lines of
the battle and in a long open letter vigorously took a
position in favor of Mr. Frank. For this political
party, the cause was judged in advance, and the
authenticity of the Diary had been proved a long time
ago.

The court in question, in spite of the efforts of Mr.
Rieger to start the trial once more, has never
rendered its judgment. The German press deplored the
fact that Mr. Otto Frank still had to wait for
“justice to be done.” Still, this refusal to judge
constitutes progress. In a similar case, Professor
Faurisson had drawn up a five-page report summarizing
his research and his conclusions about the “gas
chambers.” That statement was signed and the signature
was notarized. The professor had gone so far as to
cite the text of the Journal officiel of the French
Republic establishing that a legalization of signature
in France was valid in West Germany. A waste of
effort: in the reasons presented for the condemnation,
the Court decreed that “Faurisson” was only a
pseudonym. For the same reason it refused the
testimony of the American professor Arthur R. Butz.
Justice is equal for all, subject to the exceptio
diabolica.

[END]

 

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