Progress Report


Global Impact During a Time of New Challenges

More Meetings, Broadcast Interviews and Outreach

A New Campaign to Shut Down Our Credit Card Processing

An Update From Mark Weber
Director, Institute for Historical Review
December 2017

This past year has been another busy and productive one for us. But we’ve also had to deal with new problems caused by bigoted groups that want to shut us down.

Approved, and then rejected: IHR ad for large digital display panels in Washington, DC, subway mezzanine areas. If the Washington Metro authority can justify banning this display, it can justify banning anything.

IHR Meetings

In 2017 we organized five meetings here in southern California. Over the years these educational gatherings have helped make the IHR an important networking center for like-minded people in the region.

At our meeting on March 25 a guest from South Africa spoke about the grim conditions in his homeland, and prospects for the future. Simon Roche, a representative of “Suidlanders,” an organization dedicated to the protection of South Africa’s White “Afrikaner” population, gave an eloquent, well-organized and emphatic presentation. Much of what he said is ominously relevant for Americans.

At our May 6 meeting, Israel-born musician, author and activist Gilad Atzmon spoke about how a Jewish-Zionist “cognitive elite” has gained immense power and influence over the intellectual and cultural life of the West, successfully curbing open scholarly and political debate. (Atzmon, who now lives in Britain, also addressed an IHR meeting in October 2016, along with Dr. Kevin MacDonald and myself.)

Also at this May 6 meeting, I reviewed Donald Trump’s foreign policy during the first months of his new administration. I contrasted the principles and goals he laid out during the election campaign with the reality of his policies as President. (A podcast of that talk is posted on our website)

On July 17 I was a guest speaker at a meeting of about 40 people in Norco, California. In my talk, titled “America First? Or More of the Same?: US Foreign Policy From Washington to Trump,” I explained how the principles and basic goals of US foreign policy have changed drastically since the nation’s founding.

Until the Spanish-American war of 1898, I said, the country’s leaders carried out a restrained “America First” policy that carefully avoided “entangling alliances” and “passionate attachments” with other countries. But since then, and especially over the past 80 years, leaders of both major parties have promoted US military commitments around the world to support global American hegemony, which the media and politicians seek to justify with rhetoric about promoting “democracy” and fighting “tyranny.” The result has been a series of calamitous and very costly overseas wars.

I also reviewed the foreign policy record so far of President Trump. During the election campaign, and in his inaugural address, he denounced the costly, bungling wars of earlier administrations, and promised an “America First” foreign policy. As President, though, his actual policies have disappointed many of his supporters. Reflecting his ardent commitment to Israel and its agenda, and his support for Jewish-Zionist interests, Trump’s policies as President – especially in the Middle East – have been bellicose, illegal, and dangerously provocative.

In my talk at our September 9 IHR meeting I spoke about the zealous, nation-wide campaign to tear down statues of prominent “racist” historical figures – such as Christopher Columbus, Robert E. Lee, and even George Washington -- whom Americans have honored for more than a century. This campaign, I said, is symptomatic of a society that has no coherent sense of its history, and therefore of its national identity.

Americans have never been very clear or consistent about the nation’s cultural, religious or racial identity, I pointed out. Given this reality, which reflects a long-standing emphasis on individual interests and concerns, the angry dispute that’s now raging about the nation’s history, and therefore its identity, was inevitable.

Also at this meeting, I reported on the campaign to shut down the IHR’s credit card processing. Tom Bevington, an IT technology professional, reviewed the concerted effort in recent weeks to shut down Internet access and tech support for a large number of dissident organizations, including the IHR. He outlined possible long-term solutions to this assault on Internet free speech.

At our October 7 meeting, the featured speaker was Christopher Bollyn, an independent investigative journalist, researcher and author. His presentation, titled “The Zionist Agenda Behind the 'War on Terror',” was well-delivered and well received. He spoke about his new book, The War on Terror: The Plot to Rule the Middle East, which examines the secretive agenda of the groups and individuals who launched wars in the aftermath of the Nine Eleven attacks in the name of fighting “terrorism.” “In reality,” Bollyn says, “the War on Terror is an Israeli propaganda construct designed to deceive the West into destroying Israel’s enemies on behalf of the Zionist state. The concept is essentially an Israeli war strategy ...”

We rounded out 2017 with an upbeat Christmas get-together. This December 9 event -- our eighth annual Christmas gathering -- was a friendly, festive occasion of good fellowship and food. I reviewed our work and accomplishments over the past year, and expressed appreciation to the colleagues and friends who helped make it another successful one.

Also at this gathering, I gave a talk titled “German Soldiers of World War II: What They Fought For, and Why They Were the Best.” Hollywood has often portrayed German soldiers as slow-witted, unimaginative, and brutish. The truth is very different, I explained. In fact, and as a number of historians have pointed out, German troops were invariably more resourceful, tougher, and more imaginative than their American, British and Soviet counterparts. Moreover, I went on, the German soldier’s morale was much better than that of the men he faced because he had much more confidence and trust in his leadership, and a clearer and more concrete understanding of why he was fighting.

Washington Metro Rejects IHR Ad, Absurdly Citing Irrelevant Guidelines

Earlier this year we worked to place an IHR display ad on large digital advertising screens in mezzanine areas of the Washington, DC, subway system. After weeks of planning and negotiation, everything seemed on track. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) approved the ad’s design and content, and signed a contract with us. But in April, shortly before it was to go up, the WMATA informed us that, on further consideration, it had decided to reject the ad.

Although the ad simply proclaims “History Matters!,” the WMATA absurdly claimed that it violates guidelines that prohibit ads “intended to influence members of the public regarding an issue on which there are varying opinions,” or which “are intended to influence public policy.” (A detailed report on this effort, including the text of a follow-up letter by our attorney, is posted on our website.)

By any reasonable standard, these guidelines do not apply to this ad. If Washington Metro can see fit to ban a “History Matters!” display, it can justify banning anything. The WMATA certainly would not have objected to the “History Matters” display if it had been sponsored by a major university. The decision to reject our advertisement was clearly not based on any sincere disagreement with its message. Instead, it was obviously motivated by unhappiness with the work or views -- real or imagined -- of the IHR or me, or of authors of content published by IHR.

This display ad appeared in a recent issue of World War II magazine.

IHR Ad in World War II Magazine

An IHR display ad appeared in a recent issue of World War II magazine. The one-third page ad for our edition of Leon Degrelle’s memoir, The Eastern Front, includes a color image of the book’s front cover. We’ve been gratified by the many orders we’ve received as a result of this ad, even though we weren’t able to accept payment by credit card. After it appeared, the magazine received complaints from bigots, and refused to permit the ad to appear again, as had been agreed upon and paid for.

Banned from Britain

Recently I was unpleasantly surprised to learn that I am banned from Britain.

On September 23 I was at the international airport of Madrid, Spain, waiting in line to get a boarding pass to take a flight to London’s Heathrow airport for a lay-over of a few hours before getting a flight to return to the US. That’s when an airline official told me that I would not be allowed to board the London-bound flight because I am not permitted to enter the UK. That’s the first I heard of this. (A full report on this ban is posted on our website.)

I later learned that the UK government routinely bans visitors “if their presence would not be conducive to the public good.” Although British authorities will not say just who is on its list of “excluded” persons, it is known that Edward Snowden, Martha Stewart, Louis Farrakhan, Pamela Geller, Michael Savage and Geert Wilders are among those who have been banned.

UK officials, I also learned, were almost certainly acting in accord with the wishes of Jewish-Zionist groups, which have been especially unhappy with me for my address, titled “The Danger and Challenge of Jewish-Zionist Power,” given at a meeting in London on April 11, 2015. That event in London drew an audience of more than a hundred, and received sensational coverage in major British papers. Jewish groups complained that I was not arrested, even though – as the press reported at the time – the London police determined that I had not said or done anything illegal. (The text of my address is posted, on the IHR website, along with an audio recording. A video of the talk, posted on YouTube, has received more than 35,000 “views.”)

I was obliged to pay hundreds of dollars to arrange belated alternative flights back to the US. After my return home, I wrote polite letters to every relevant British agency to learn more about this ban.

A Visit to Iran

In February I visited Iran as a guest of the country’s parliament to attend a two-day conference in support of freedom for Palestine. The large gathering at a major conference center in Tehran brought together some 700 men and women from dozens of countries. In addition to the many delegates, there were writers, filmmakers and scholars from a range of countries, together with many Iranian cinema specialists, journalists, officials and others.

Along with officials of dozens of countries, Iran’s President addressed the assembly. A high point was the speech by the country’s Supreme Leader, who urged support for Palestinian “all-out resistance” to Israel’s “cruel occupation.” The international community, he said, is heading toward confrontation with the “Zionist regime.”

I was one of several Americans who were invited to the event. This productive visit also included many interviews, useful discussions with Iranian scholars and officials, and productive talks with writers and activists from a range of countries, and cordial meetings with friends.

During this expense-paid visit (my third to Iran) I gained a greater understanding of this ancient but vibrant nation of 80 million, which is playing a steadily more prominent role in the region, and which the US and its Zionist allies have been threatening with military attack. I gave a detailed report about this recent visit at our March 25 IHR meeting, with remarks about Iran’s widening role in the Middle East and the world, and the heightened hostility against Iran by the new Trump administration.

Malicious Campaign Shuts Down Our Credit Card Processing

On August 21 the company that had been processing our credit card orders and donations abruptly cancelled its account with us.

After nearly two years without problems or complaints, the TransFirst/ TSYS company told us that it was terminating credit card processing for us, effective immediately – claiming that the IHR distributes “materials promoting hate.” TransFirst did this two days after ProPublica, a leftist outfit headquartered in New York City, announced its campaign to pressure and prod tech companies such as TransFirst to stop doing business with the IHR and other alleged “hate groups.”

Immediately after receiving the notice of cancellation, I phoned TransFirst to learn precisely what “materials promoting hate” prompted its decision. A company representative was unable or unwilling to cite any example of such materials. I followed up with a letter asking TransFirst to let me know of specific materials or items being distributed by IHR that it believes are “promoting hate,” so that they could be evaluated for possible removal. The company was unable or unwilling to do so. (A detailed report on this campaign, including the full text of my letter to TransFirst, is posted on our website.)

David Cole, a southern California author and columnist, looked into the campaign, and reported on it in a Taki’s Magazine essay. “... Regarding what happened to the IHR,” wrote Cole, “what we have is a faux-journalism institute [ProPublica] funded by left-wing billionaires deciding to engage in 21st-century book-burning by putting a publishing company [IHR] out of business ... ProPublica is run by a charlatan who exemplifies everything that’s bad about his supposed profession. It’s a foul enterprise run by foul people. A `journalistic institution’ funded by Democrat billionaires tried to shutter a publishing house (one that even some of its harshest critics agree is beneficial).”

ProPublica acknowledges that it has no standard of its own for the “hate” label it applies to others. It says that it relies on lists compiled by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), an influential Zionist organization, and the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a wealthy, influential group with a record of leftist bias.

Such self-appointed “watchdog” organizations provide no objective standard for their malicious labeling. They routinely overlook or approve of groups and websites that support policies of discrimination based on ancestry or religion ... if they are Zionist. ProPublica has no criticism of groups -- such as the America Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the Anti-Defamation League, and the Simon Wiesenthal Center – that routinely defend Israeli policies of discrimination and oppression based on ancestry or heritage. Israel’s well-documented record of discriminatory policies based on ethnicity or religion has earned worldwide condemnation, reflected in many United Nations resolutions approved with overwhelming majorities.

We've had to divert time and effort to deal with this new problem. We have restored credit card processing for online donations, at least temporarily, but we’re still working to restore similar processing for book and disc orders.

Some weeks ago, and after providing detailed records and paperwork about our operations, one prospective company approved our application and told us that everything looked fine. We even signed a contract. But a higher-level official intervened to cancel the agreement. That set us back, once again, obliging us to continue our search.

Over the years we have repeatedly come under fire from hostile sectarian groups that regard the IHR as harmful to their interests. The recent ProPublica campaign is similar to the well-publicized effort four years ago by New York politician Dov Hikind, a zealous Zionist with a record of bigotry, that shut down our credit card processing for several months. The Institute has repeatedly been a victim of bigotry and extremist violence. In 1984, for example, Jewish Defense League activists carried out a criminal arson attack against the Institute’s offices.

Interviews and Outreach

Over the past year I’ve conducted numerous broadcast interviews with US and overseas media, appearing as a guest on radio and television broadcasts to talk about topical and historical issues. Most of these were with global television broadcasters that reach vast numbers of viewers. My analysis and commentary in these interviews cover a range of current affairs issues, including American and Russian involvement in the Middle East, and US relations with Israel, Saudi Arabia and other countries. Some of these interviews have been made into video clips, which attract additional viewers around the world.

Of course, we’ve also carried on our regular work -- including routine sales and distribution of books, discs and flyers, and compiling and distributing our “IHR News and Comment” e-mail bulletins.

Our website’s home page – -- is regularly updated with selected news and comment items, and periodic reports on the Institute’s work and impact. It’s also a gateway to our immense library and archive, which serves as a great learning center, globally informing and educating people.