Garaudy’s work, “The Founding Myths of Israeli Politics,” doubts the widely accepted belief that six million Jews were systematically exterminated by the Nazis in World War II. It says the Jews suffered “massacres” that did not amount to genocide.
Garaudy, a former Roman Catholic who converted to Islam after being expelled from the Communist Party leadership, argued that Israel has used “the myth of six million exterminated Jews” to build its state and justify attacks on Palestinians.
Abbe Pierre, who helped Jews escape from Nazi-occupied France to neutral Switzerland, triggered fresh protest by reiterating his support for the book. He insisted he had lifted a taboo by agreeing with Garaudy that there may have been exaggerations after the war.