About three years ago, when I was still at the BBC, I was contacted by a 17-year-old schoolgirl from Kansas. She was working on her high school dissertation on the origins of the Holocaust and a friend had told her that I had written a book on Auschwitz. ‘Can I just check something with you,’ she wrote. ‘I’ve done some research on this topic on the web and I’ve discovered that the Holocaust happened because Adolf Hitler hated the Jews because he had caught syphilis from a Jewish prostitute. That’s right, isn’t it?’
That was the moment when I decided that after I left the BBC I wanted to make a website on the Second World War. I hoped to create a multimedia resource that was both authoritative and accessible – one that would, if nothing else, prevent other young people thinking that Hitler ordered the extermination of the Jews because of a sexually transmittable disease.
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