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Thesis on neo-Nazism holds up under review

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SYDNEY, Australia (JTA) – A New Zealand student’s controversial master’s thesis on neo-Nazism was returned to library shelves despite a protest by one of its subjects.

A 10-month internal investigation by Waikato University on the South Island of New Zealand found last week that there were no grounds to uphold complaints against Roel Van Leeuwen’s master’s thesis, which was taken off library shelves last September and deleted from the university’s online repository.

Van Leeuwen’s thesis, titled “Dreamers of the Dark: Kerry Bolton and the Order of the Left Hand Path, a case-study of a Satanic/Neo Nazi Synthesis,” focuses on Bolton, a right-wing extremist who was a former secretary of the New Zealand National Front and New Zealand Fascist Union.

Bolton claimed that the thesis amounted to “criminal libel,” and demanded financial compensation for the “emotional and physical stress caused.”

Last week, the vice-chancellor of the university, Professor Roy Crawford, issued a statement saying the thesis would be back on the shelves and online after the investigation deemed it worthy of its first-class honors.

But Bolton, who documented dozens of pages listing complaints of inaccuracies, said the decision was a joke.

“No report has been released, just a one-page letter saying that the thesis is worthy because ‘two well-qualified academics’ say so,” he told local media.” He said he would take the issue to the Ombudsman and the Privacy Commissioner.

Bolton, who denies he is a neo-Nazi sympathizer, is described as “the Adelaide Institute’s associate in New Zealand” by Dr Fredrick Toben, the Australian revisionist historian who was sentenced to three months in jail for breaching a court order to remove Holocaust denial material from his Web site.

The thesis was co-supervised by Israeli-born Professor Dov Bing.
 

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