The Holocaust and the Six Million

The Holocaust and the ‘Six Million’


In 2009 Thomas Dalton published a book entitled Debating the Holocaust, a new look at both sides. The following short essay is based on Chapter Three entitled: On the Origin, and Future, of the “Six Million”. I am examining only the source and validity of the number ‘Six Million’ as used by the Zionists.

Dalton wrote:


In the traditional account of the Holocaust story, we never hear about the origins of the famous “6 million.” And for good reason: it has a potentially incriminating past (p.49).


He adds the following footnote to the text quoted above: A more thorough accounting of the following story is given by Heddesheimer, in his book The First Holocaust (2005; 2nd edition). Also, see Rudolf (2005: 18-27).


The New York Times is the so-called American ‘paper of record’. Since the 1890s the Times has had Jewish ownership and management, and thus has long been sensitive to matters of Jewish concern. Perhaps this is part of the explanation for the Times‘s astonishing prescience when it came to anticipating the Jewish death figure. Dalton uses it as his source to cite instances of Jewish suffering around the world (pp. 50-55). The use of the number ‘6 million’ does beg an explanation. Here is a summary of those reports:

6 million Jews in the world in 1869, and

6 million in Russia alone in 1891, and

6 million Jewish families in Russia, and

6 million Jewish people in Russia in 1911, and

6 million suffering in Europe in 1915, 1920, 1938, 1942, and

6 million in the German-controlled Reich…and

6 million killed in the Holocaust.


Dalton writes:


Thus it appears that the figure of 6 million represents a sort of constant in Jewish suffering, irrespective of circumstances. It seems to possess a kind of magical symbolism, and hence becomes a sacred icon of Jewish persecution (it is in this sense that I refer to it as a “magic number”). As such, the figure perhaps stands as a strictly symbolic number rather than as literal truth. Like the term “holocaust” itself, it was obviously well established many years before the rise of the Nazis, or the onset of the World War II Holocaust. (p.53)


I urge you to read Thomas Dalton’s whole book. It is well-researched and contains a wealth of information on this controversial topic. Be sure to read the introduction (pp. 5-12) and you may wish to read the epilogue (pp. 255-63) after reading the introduction; it is an informative overview of the book’s salient points.


About aschvetahata

Interests: Sanskrit, Hindi, Classical Greek, Latin, French, German Philosophy: especially Friedrich Nietzsche and South Asian Indian thought Computers
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