Directed by Heather Schmulian

THE FALSE WITNESS is a morality play which questions our right to assign the blame for the HOLOCAUST only to Hitler and his THIRD REICH. This play challenges the conventional wisdom and seeks to lift the curtain on the subject of WHO IS REALLY TO BLAME.

The audience is impaneled as the jury and the indictment against Hitler is read. Defense Counsel begins to argue his case for the innocence of Adolf Hitler and his program of Genocide.. The Defense Counsel enters his evidence and brings forth his witnesses to prove that Hitler cannot be guilty because HE WAS ACTING IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE WISHES OF MANKIND.

The testimonies of Martin Luther, William Shakespeare, Richard Wagner, Henry Ford, Franklin Roosevelt and Pope Pius XII are brought before the jury as the Defense Counsel argues that the greatest personalities in the history of civilization shared Adolf Hitlerís view of the Jewish threat to Western Civilization.

As the Defense Counsel for Adolf Hitler, Martin Luther gives us the medieval foundation of Hitler's anti-Jewish policies. Prosecution places into evidence the infamous Luther tract, "THE JEWS AND THEIR LIES" which accuses the Jews of blaspheming Jesus in their prayer books and in their synagogues and of kidnapping Christian children and using their blood for the Passover service. Luther even proposes a method of dealing with the Jewish question in his day which is chillingly similar to the program of the THIRD REICH. The play reveals the tragic irony of Luther's real motives in attacking the Jews.

When the Defense calls William Shakespeare to the stand and places into evidence The Merchant of Venice, the jury is introduced to the deep and pervasive anti-Semitic traditions present in the art and literature of Western Civilization. As the origin of Shylock is revealed, the jury must ponder the ideological parallels between Elizabethan England and Nazi Germany.

As Richard Wagner takes the stand, we become aware of the philosophical mentor of Hitler and the origin of the Aryan ideology. Wagner, the creative genius, who was idolized by Hitler, gives his notion of Aryan supremacy and the need to maintain its racial purity. Wagner arrogantly tells the Court that his operas warned Germany of its racial degeneration and the need for a renewal of the Aryan spirit. Wagner warns that the most insidious enemy of Aryan Germany is the Jew who will contaminate the purity of the master race. When Prosecution reveals the shocking truth about Wagner's ethnic background, the jury (audience) is left to ponder the bizarre backdrop of the THIRD REICH'S Aryan ideology.

In Henry Ford, the jury is confronted with the contemporary aspects of American anti-Semitism which caused the American Congress in the 1930's to close the doors to the Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi terror. Defense places into evidence Ford's THE INTERNATIONAL JEW, a horrific denunciation of the Jews which was circulated by the Nazis as part of their propaganda campaign. Defense also places into evidence the infamous PROTOCOLS OF THE ELDERS OF ZION which Ford circulated throughout the world. Banking on Ford's immense credibility, Defense attempts to convince the jury (audience) the existence of a Jewish world conspiracy to subjugate all of the gentile nations. As Prosecution takes up the cross examination, the Ford-Hitler connection is revealed to the jury with all its horrifying aspects.

In Franklin D. Roosevelt, Defense confronts the jury (audience) with the awful realities that the Jews were not wanted by the world community. Defense challenges Roosevelt with the failure of the Evian Conference which was supposed to assist Jewish refugees in fleeing Nazi persecution. Defense presses its case further by showing the hostility of the State Department and Congress toward raising immigration quotas and arguing that America wanted THE FINAL SOLUTION because it was solving the refugee problem.

In response to Roosevelt's claim that THE REICH was a racist regime, Hitler reminds Roosevelt of the way America treated its blacks. In this confrontation, the jury (audience) is asked to examine its own attitudes toward race. Under examination by Prosecution, Roosevelt responds by telling the Court that he harbored no anti-Semitic feelings. He points out that he appointed many Jewish people to important positions in his administration. Regarding the Jewish suffering under Nazi persecution, Roosevelt argues that only a swift allied victory over Germany would have saved lives.

As Pope Pius XII takes the stand, the jury (audience) is reminded of the tragic history of Jewish-Vatican relations. Defense argues to the Eternal Court that the Pope was silent during the war because he wanted what Hitler wanted: A Jew free Europe. He places into evidence the anti-Jewish papal bulls dating back to the 13th century and argues that these decrees are proof of the Vatican's real motive.

Defense even places into evidence the curriculum of the Benedictine Monastery where Hitler attended classes in Austria. According to the Defense Counsel, this Catholic school curriculum is the ultimate evidence of the Vatican's belief regarding the Jewish question.

The play nears its conclusion as Adolf Hitler takes the stand and claims that he gave the world exactly what it wanted and that he is being made a scapegoat while the rest of the world can hide from its own complicity. Hungary, Poland, France and Austria could not wait to give him their Jews. Under cross-examination by Prosecution, Hitler is confronted with the question of whether he would have sent Jesus Christ to the ovens insofar as Jesus was Jewish.

After Defense and Prosecution have summarized their respective cases, the Chief Lord Justice gives his instructions to the jury (audience) and reminds them that their verdict will affect the future of all mankind.


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