PARIS, June 15 (UPI) -- Roger Garaudy, a longtime Communist who fought in the French resistance in World War II but became a Holocaust denier in old age, has died. He was 98.
Garaudy's death was announced by the Web site Egalite et Reconciliation. He died Wednesday at his home in a Paris suburb, Chennevières-sur-Marne.
His career was marked by feuds. His dispute with another philosopher, Michel Foucault, led him to change universities, Radio France Internationale reported, and he even turned on the Muslim cleric who converted him to Islam.
Garaudy joined the French Communist Party in 1933 while he was a university student. He fought in World War II, receiving the Croix de Guerre, was sent to a prison camp in Algeria by the Vichy government and then worked with the resistance radio and the Communist newspaper Liberte after he was freed.
After the war, he served in parliament as a Communist deputy and senator but broke with the party over the 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia. He also taught philosophy at the universities of Clermont-Ferrand and Poitiers.
In 1982, Garaudy converted to Islam. He had become an extreme anti-Zionist and about 10 years later published "The Founding Myths of Modern Israel," which claimed most of the Jews sent to concentration camps died of typhus and were not deliberately killed.
Garaudy was convicted in 1998 of inciting racial hatred and ordered to pay a large fine.
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