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David McCalden c.1980
|Born||20 September 1951
Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK
|Died||15 October 1990
El Segundo, California, U.S.
|Occupation||Involvement in British politics and Holocaust denial|
William David McCalden (20 September 1951 – 15 October 1990) was a figure in the British political far right. As co-founder of the Institute for Historical Review in 1978, he is notable for his extreme right politics and advocacy of Holocaust denial.
McCalden was born in Belfast. He left Northern Ireland in 1972 to study at Goldsmiths College in London. During his time at University he was widely known as "Revisionist Dave". McCalden was noted[by whom?] for his long hair and readiness to debate with left-wing fellow students.
McCalden first became involved in politics as a member of the National Front, where he became editor of the party newspaper Nationalist News. A leading supporter of John Kingsley Read, McCalden transferred his allegiance to the National Party soon after Read and other NF members founded the party in 1976. He became a leading contributor to the party journal Britain First. He also became involved in setting up organisations for hunt saboteurs and produced a journal on the subject called Howl. His other works at this time included Beacon, another journal, and allegedly the book Nuremberg & Other War Crimes Trials (1978), although this was initially written under the pseudonym Richard Harwood, one shared with fellow "Holocaust denier" Richard Verrall.
Emigration to US and Holocaust denial
McCalden emigrated to the United States and arrived in California in 1978. Here he met up with veteran American populist Willis Carto and set up the Institute for Historical Review, of which McCalden was appointed Director and Editor-in-Chief (although he generally operated under the name Lewis Brandon in these roles). McCalden soon garnered a reputation as an advocate of Holocaust denial and became the leading organizational figure within the IHR. In 1980, acting as "Lewis Brandon" and on behalf of the IHR, McCalden offered a $50,000 reward for proof that Jews were gassed to death in the Auschwitz Concentration Camp. After McCalden declined an acceptance by Auschwitz survivor Mel Mermelstein, a lawsuit was filed by public interest attorney William John Cox. In October 1981, a Los Angeles County Superior Court judge ruled that "this court does take judicial notice of the fact that Jews were gassed to death at Auschwitz Concentration Camp in Poland during the summer of 1944." The judge went on to say, "It is simply a fact."
McCalden and Carto had a falling out over the case, and in 1981 McCalden left the IHR and set up his own group Truth Missions. Under this imprint he published a number of journals including Revisionist Reprints, Holocaust News and David McCalden's Revisionist Newsletter and books including The Amazing, Rapidly Shrinking "Holocaust" (1987).
McCalden died, at the age of 39, in El Segundo, California, on 15 October 1990, from complications due to viral pneumonia caused by AIDS. He was survived by his second wife, Viviana, and their daughter.