Wiesenthal Centre Statement in Support of Westminster Call for New Investigation into Death of Jeremiah Duggan

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Dr. Shimon Samuels, Director for International Relations
(cell phone: +33 609 77 01 58)

Wiesenthal Centre Statement in Support of Westminster Call for New Investigation into Death of Jeremiah Duggan

In March 2003, Jeremiah Duggan - a young British Jew studying in Paris - was recruited by a French representative of the LaRouche network. He accepted an invitation to attend a seminar on the war in Iraq at the movement's Schiller Institute in Wiesbaden, Germany. At 4 a.m. on 27 March, he telephoned his mother in London in a state of panic. The phone went dead. One hour later, his body was found in the road outside the city. The German police dismissed the case as "suicide", a conclusion rejected at a subsequent British inquest.


27 March 2007, The Houses of Parliament, London

The Simon Wiesenthal Centre's Director for International Relations, Dr Shimon Samuels, presented the following statement:

Mr Chairman Lord Janner, Erica Duggan,

Our Centre's condolences on this fourth anniversary of Jeremiah's death.

Erica Duggan first contacted me two years ago to seek assistance in Paris, where her son had been recruited by a LaRouche network squad leader. I gave her a report that I had prepared in 1982 on this organization's activities across Europe.

Well-financed and focussing on youth, this movement's publications were a concoction of conspiracy mythology replete with antisemitic leitmotivs:
- medieval blood libels
- "Protocols of Zion-style" obsession with Jewish/ Zionist domination of banking, media, and government
- Holocaust denial and banalisation

This syndrome was compounded by a psychotic Anglophobia.

As a British-born Jewish official of an American organization, I apparently represented this cabal in the eyes of LaRouchites and my report led to incessant harassment, telephonic death threats and more banal intimidation that ebbed as our agenda was overtaken by other issues.

For Erica Duggan, there is no other issue. She could have stepped back into her bereavement. She refused and, at personal cost, became a one-woman campaign for monitoring, counteraction and prevention.  Trawling the Internet, appealing to the media, lobbying governments, she has joined Dennis King and Chip Berlet as the trio of world experts on LaRouchiteism.

Antisemitic statements in the movement's publications going back to the 1970's, and quoted by King and Berlet in their studies, are posted on the current LaRouche Youth Movement's websites. These include attacks by euphemism on "usures", "Shylocks", "hora dancers", the Mossad's implication in 9/11, the Iraq-war lobby, and the so-called "Synarchy" of Judeo-British financiers.

These statements have had a ready echo in Arab and Iranian media, as in less mainstream hatesites whose prime target is youth.

The network has recruited several young Jews, who are then exposed to such statements as "Zionism is a hideous doctrine, a hideous cult... You have no right to hide behind the whimpering, morally degraded profession: I am one little person... You are personally accountable and have no moral right to complain against whatever evil the world bestows upon you..." (cited by Dennis King in "The Anti-Semitism of the LaRouche Movement: A Summary.", pp. 1 and 3).

It would be natural, after becoming emotionally intimidated, that young Jews in the Movement would denounce their heritage.  No wonder Jeremiah, a British Jew and grandson of Holocaust survivors, would have reacted in shock and fear.

On the Holocaust, King cites: "The contemptible but impassioned sophistry which the Zionist demagogue offers to all foolish enough to be impressed with such hoaxes is the "holocaust" thesis... This is worse than sophistry.
It is a lie. True, about a million and a half Jews did die as a result of the Nazi policy of labour-intensive 'appropriate technology' for the employment of 'inferior races'..." (King ibid, p.4)

Such statements are in violation of German law and in contravention of the anti-racist provisions of the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.  They are as illegal as the grounds for the arrest by Germany of American Gary Lauck and Canadian Ernst Zundel, and by Austria of Briton David Irving.

Erica Duggan has appealed to the German authorities to reopen the investigation into her son's death. The Simon Wiesenthal Centre has supported that appeal in a letter to the Federal Justice Minister, Brigitte Zypries. Furthermore, any expression that may diminish the Holocaust cannot be ignored in Germany, where Chancellor Merkel has, laudably, called for a ban on Holocaust revisionism across the European Union.

It has become apparent posthumously, from his notes on the Wiesbaden seminar, that Jeremiah indignantly revealed his Jewish identity - a heroic act, whereupon he lost his life.

In France, it took the entrapment, torture and death of Ilan Halimi to awaken public opinion. May the tragic narratives of Ilan and Jeremiah, respectively, alert the authorities of Europe to the danger that threatens the youth of any ethnic and faith community.

Erica and Hugo Duggan's battle for transparency and justice has created a focal point for other concerned parents. Their quest is not for commemoration, but for prevention. As the bereaved mother who led this campaign, Erica deserves the support of this, the Mother of Parliaments, and of us all.

Thank you, Mr Chairman.