Penguin withdraws publication of anti-semitic book after public battle

July 1, 2019 by TPS
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Penguin Random House UK has withdrawn the publication of a book with anti-Semitic content that promotes conspiracy theories of Jewish global domination.

The book in question is the English language edition of Colonel Pedro Baños’ book titled “How they rule the world”, which promulgates conspiracy theories about the Rothschild family.

Anti-Semitic conspiracies surrounding the Rothschild family have blamed them for the world’s calamities while accusing them of leading a global Jewish conspiracy. The falsehood became widespread during the Nazi era.

The rights for the English language edition will revert to the Spanish publisher and audio and e-book editions will no longer be available.

The cancellation of the publication of the book followed a prolonged battle by Jewish organizations and anti-Semitism watchdogs.

The Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) and other organizations launched a campaign after Penguin published an English translation of the Spanish book, but censored passages about the Rothschild family.

“We welcome the decision to cease publication of the English language edition but it should never have come to this. It should have been plain to anyone that the Rothschild conspiracy theories popularized by the Nazis are inherently anti-Semitic,” CAA stated Monday.

CAA further charged that “by publishing the book, they played right into the hands of anti-Semites by legitimizing this blatant anti-Semitism. It is outrageous that such an esteemed publisher had a hand in perpetuating this.”

The book cover depicts an octopus which was used by the Nazis as a euphemism for Jewish tentacles trying to take over the world.

Author Jeremy Duns researched Baños’ views and uncovered other anti-Jewish conspiracy theories he espouses, including one that the Jews killed President John Kennedy, supposedly because he did not want Israel to have nuclear weapons.

Duns described Penguin’s attempt to sanitize the book as “very dodgy non-fiction practices.”

After initial protestations, Penguin undertook what they termed as a “thorough” review of the book. They concluded that while Baños’ views, including in the parts omitted, are “robust”, they were not anti-Semitic.

As the backlash continued, Penguin commissioned its independent external review. Baroness Julia  Neuberger was tasked with analyzing both the English language and a translation of the Spanish edition of the book.

CAA stated that it “is pleased that Penguin Random House UK has finally arrived at the correct decision.”

However, “it appears that while senior management was not involved in the original decision to publish, it was involved in the decision to initially defend the book, and then to order an independent review, rather than immediately grasping that conspiracy theories about the Rothschild family are part of an anti-Semitic narrative that they should have played no part in perpetuating,” CAA added.

TPS

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