Historical News and Comment

Millions Go Into New Museums

National Holocaust Museum to Cost $100 Million

Mark Weber

The campaign for the "U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum" in Washington D.C., has moved into high gear, says national director David Weinstein. More than $13 million in gifts and pledges for the museum center have already been received, he reports, and the campaign is receiving "support from all sectors of American life, which should enable construction of the museum to begin in the fall."

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, an independent federal government agency, was mandated by Congress to build the national museum, which will be the only one in the world outside of Israel. President Ronald Reagan is honorary chairman of the museum's fund-raisin campaign.

The Council has set the Spring of 1989 as the target date for completion of the museum, which will be built near the Mall and the Washington Monument. Churches, schools, labor unions and corporations are scheduled to participate in the national fund-raising drive for the museum center, which will be supported with a massive nationwide Holocaust media barrage. The campaign will aim to collect $100 million, including an estimated $30 million for construction costs, $45 million for equipment, exhibits, computer systems, films and books, and $25 million for maintenance and operating costs.

The 275,000-square-foot museum center building will include a 10,000 square foot "Hall of Remembrance," as well as a library, archives, an auditorium and classrooms. Some 80,000 square feet of space will be reserved for both permanent and changing exhibitions. The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council expects the museum to serve regional and local Holocaust centers across the country.

Although it was mandated by the U.S. Congress and will be built with funds from the American public, the museum is supposed to memorialize non-Americans who died on another continent more than forty years ago. There will be no comparable memorial center for the millions of non-Jewish victims of Soviet communism, the aboriginal Indians eliminated in the expansion of the United States, or even for the 290,000 Americans who died during the Second World War.

Thoughtful people in our country and around the world will realize, even if millions of credulous Americans do not, that this museum, like the entire Holocaust campaign, is a hypocritical mercenary venture meant primarily to generate special sympathy and support for Zionist Jewish objectives.

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum will be, above all, a monument to the historically unparalleled power and influence of a small but determined minority group, and a permanent reminder to all Americans of the craven lack of integrity and principle of those who authorized it. As the massive fund-raising and media campaign for the museum gets underway, the work of the IHR and historical revisionism will become all the more important.


From The Journal of Historical Review, Winter 1985-86 (Vol. 6, No. 4), pages 503-504.