Twitter Facebook Print PDF   |   ... more



Obituary: Franklin Littell, Holocaust Scholar

Summary ... Most people don't realize it but for several years after WWII nobody wanted to speak of the Holocaust, even the Jews. But thanks to Franklin Littell, all of that changed. He created the first Holocaust study programs in US universities. He also called the Christian Church to task for aiding and/or ignoring the murder of six million Jews in Europe. the father of modern Holocaust studies died last Saturday, May 30, 2009.

Franklin Littell, 91, a renowned Holocaust scholar, died last Saturday (May 30, 2009) at his home in Merion Station, Pa. He had dedicated his life to bringing awareness of the subject to all the world. He is recognized as the father of modern Holocaust studies in the United States. According to John K. Roth, an emeritus professor at Claremont McKenna College, Littell "helped turn the tide on the awareness of Christian complicity".

Littell's interest in the Holocaust began in 1939 when he heard Adolf Hitler speak at a rally in Nuremburg, Germany. He was horrified by what he seen and heard. As a Methodist minister, he began to delve into the background of the Holocaust and was one of the first scholars to question why the Christian community in Europe either aided or completely ignored the murder of six million Jews. Littell was very bold in the reports of his findings. He felt that part of the reason why the European Christians stood by and did nothing during the Holocaust was that Christianity had shown contempt for the Jews and what they believed from its very beginnings. Littell was not afraid to confront the Church for its anti-Semitic views.

In 1975, Littell wrote a book called, The Crucifixion of the Jews. The focus of the book is the anti-Semitism of the Christian church, and includes a plea by Littell for the Church to deal with this major problem. When it was first published, the original publisher was so terrified by the negative reaction of Christian and Jewish leaders that he "let the book go out of print". Eventually, another publisher picked it up and it has been re-released. Littell was the author of more than two dozen books and more than 1,000 articles.

Aside from creating both the first doctoral program and the first interdisciplinary master's degree program in Holocaust studies, Littell also became an ardent supporter of Israel. He believed that the existence of the Jewish people refuted the replacement theology that is so prevelent in many Christian churches, even today. He also rejected the belief held by many Christian supporters of Israel that the Jews must ultimately convert to Christianity. In addition, Littell also founded the Christians Concerned for Israel and the National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel.

Littell was a founding member of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council. In 1979, he was the first Christian appointed to the International Governing Board of Yad Vashem, in Jerusalem.

[ Published: June 4, 2009 ]



Keep current with these articles

Sign up to receive free e-mail alerts.

  

Need to find additional information?



In Depth Analysis

The Real Goal of the 'Palestinian' Intifada

PA/PLO leader Abbas seems intentionally to ignore that he and his PA/PLO are responsible for the violence, as a result of their daily incitement against Israel. A recent poll found that approximately half of 'Palestinians' believe the "Intifada" should lead to the destruction of Israel.

The Hidden Hand Behind the Palestinian Terror Wave

What is really going on behind the scenes of the current terrorist attacks? It's actually a lot more than what is seen on a daily basis. Hamas is fighting to take control of the PA/PLO while Fatah is doing its best to stay in power and get Gaza back under its control.

'Ancient Arab Susiya' - The Town That Never Was

The Palestinian Authority is a master at inventing history. Arabs claim they have been in Susiya long before Jews although evidence proves the contrary. The tactic is conquering the southern Hevron Hills.

Emet Blog

The "Spontaneous" Intifada Is Orchestrated by the Palestinian Leadership

The Arab leadership is attempting to portray the current Intifada as a kind of popular, spontaneous struggle that expresses the population's despair over the political situation. In reality, it is an Intifada supported and directed by the Arab leadership of the PA/PLO-Fatah and Hamas.

Uncomfortable Questions for Comfortable Jews: The Temple Mount

Rabbi Meir Kahane points out that, contrary to popular belief, the Temple Mount is in Arab hands, the cunning Arab foxes. And the words of Motta Gur ring hollowly — and it is the Jews who are to blame. They took a miracle and disdained it. They, who took holiness and profaned it. They who were given a Zion, a Jerusalem, Temple Mount — gave it over to the jackal-foxes.

Marie Harf and the Washington Post Lied About Israeli Support for Iran Deal

Some of you may have seen the tweet by former State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf, and the underlying article from the Washington Post, last week. There's one small problem: Harf and the Washington Post lied.

Views/Commentary

A Matter of Priority - The Jonathan Pollard Case

US Jewish leaders blew it recently when what was a rare opportunity to ask the US president face-to-face to release Jonathan Pollard, they didn't even consider the matter as being a priority.

Obama Declares War on Israel

Obama needs to wake up. The real enemy is not Netanyahu. The real enemy is Iran, Hizb'Allah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Islamic State, and the establishment of a terrorist state in the midst of Israel.

Could Barak Obama Swing the Upcoming Israeli Election?

It's no state secret that US President Barack Obama is not a huge fan of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. His distain for the Jewish leader is well-known throughout the world; he's never tried to hide it. But now that Israel is having new elections in March does it mean Obama could, either directly or indirectly, influence the elections in Israel in order to obtain a defeat for Netanyahu?