On January 14th 2008 the persecution of those Europeans who dare to question the official version of their continent's history was significantly increased.
German lawyer Sylvia Stolz was jailed for three and a half years after being convicted of several offences related to her representation of clients including the Canadian publisher, artist and pacifist Ernst Zündel.
Several of the charges related to the notorious Section 130 of the German Penal Code. This originally dealt with volksverhetzung - incitement to racial hatred or violence - but has been extended (notably in 1994) effectively to criminalise any "denial" of aspects of Holocaust history.
Sylvia Stolz and her attorney Ludwig Bock
attempted to challenge the constitutionality of Section 130, since it appears to contradict the guarantee of free expression enshrined in Germany's Basic Law of 1949.
They also made numerous attempts to introduce evidence which would show that there is a legitimate debate about many aspects of the well known allegation that National Socialist Germany carried out the mass extermination of six million European Jews.
This particular period of history is given a unique legal protection under the label Offenkundigkeit ("manifest obviousness"), making it immune from the normal process of sceptical historical enquiry.
Each and every attempt to raise such questions was ruled out of order by the Mannheim court, which seemed determined to convict Sylvia Stolz from the outset of the trial, and to exclude any evidence which might challenge such a preordained verdict.
The mere fact that Sylvia fought tirelessly in defence of her clients was used as proof that she was "obstructing justice". Such is the Alice in Wonderland position in German courts: attempting to introduce evidence relevant to one's client's defence is automatically deemed criminally obstructive, if that client is accused of offending against the sacred and "mainifestly obvious" tenets of Holocaustianity.
Most unusually for this type of case, Sylvia Stolz was taken into custody immediately after the sentence, rather than remaining free on bail pending appeal. This could be seen as yet another example of the authoritarian German state seeking to make an example of a lawyer who acted too much in defence of her clients.
Further reports on the Sylvia Stolz case will appear here soon.
Ernst Zündel was sentenced at the Mannheim court on February 15th 2007 to five years imprisonment. For more on the Zundel case, click here.
In March 2007, also at the Mannheim Court, Germar Rudolf received a 30 month prison sentence. Click here for further reports on the Rudolf case.