That P.W.E memo of August 1943.

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That P.W.E memo of August 1943.

Post by been-there »

Victor Cavendish-Bentinck (later to be ennobled and elevated as 'Lord Portland') — who was head of the British Psychological Warfare department — wrote as late as August 1943 that he didn't believe there was ANY evidence of mass-gassings, despite him and a colleague following allegations of German atrocities “closely”!
He wrote: “...I do not believe that there is any evidence that this has been done.”

He admitted that as part of his psychological warfare campaign he had played up the rumours of gassings in Poland (in BBC broadcasts in 1942), yet stated in 1943 that he himself regarded these allegation as unfounded Polish and Jewish propaganda that was useful for psychological warfare.

Yet curiously he wrote that they KNEW there was a German policy to "destroy" all Jews who were not fit to work.
So two questions:

Q1. Is it stated anywhere how did he “know” this?

Q2. And what was the method he supposedly KNEW they were being “destroyed” by in Poland, if not by gassing nor by being “killed”.

P.S. When he mentions “P.W.E” he is referring to his agency known as the Psychological Warfare Executive.
27th August, 1943

In my opinion it is incorrect to describe Polish Information regarding German atrocities as "trustworthy". The Poles, and to a far greater extent the Jews, tend to exaggerate German atrocities in order to stoke us up. They seem to have succeeded.

Mr. Allen and myself have both followed German atrocities quite closely. I do not believe that there is any evidence which would be accepted in a Law Court that Polish children have been killed on the spot by Germans when their parents were being deported to work in Germany, nor that Polish children have been sold to German settlers. As regards putting Poles to death in gas chambers, I do not believe that there is any evidence that this has been done. There have been many stories to this effect, and we have played them up in P.W.E. rumours without believing that they had any foundation. At any rate there is far less evidence than exists for the mass murder of Polish officers by the Russians at Katyn. On the other hand we do know that the Germans are out to destroy Jews of any age unless they are fit for manual labour.

I think that we weaken our case against the Germans by publicly giving credence to atrocity stories for which we have no evidence. These mass executions in gas chambers remind me of the story of employment of human corpses during the last war for the manufacture of fat, which was a grotesque lie and led to the true stories of German enormities being brushed aside as being mere propaganda.

I am very sad to see that we must needs ape the Russians and talk about "Hitlerite" instead "German".

Victor Cavendish-Bentinck

27th August, 1943. ... tinck.html
Discussed here taken from the Irving vs Lipstadt Trial
"When people who are honestly mistaken learn the truth,
they either cease being mistaken
or they cease being honest"
-- Anonymous

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