Irving v. Lipstadt


Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 4: Electronic Edition

Pages 101 - 105 of 207

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    That will probably take us up to, at any rate, 5 to 1.
 1these two little snippets will do for the moment. For the
 2moment, I have not fished out original transcripts,
 3Mr Irving, so I hope you will forgive me. If Professor
 4Evans has mistranscribed what you are alleged to have
 5said, then no doubt, you will tell us. Page 134(c)
 6"Systematic nature of the extermination". This is
 7Professor Evans: "A refusal to accept that the
 8extermination of the Jews was systematically organised or
 9centrally directed is a major element in the phenomenon of
10Holocaust denial"?
11 A. [Mr Irving]     As defined by him.
12 Q. [Mr Rampton]     I am reading his words. You can cross-examine him about
13his words, not me. "Where does Irving stand on this
14issue? Even before he changed his mind on the numbers
15killed and the use of gassing as a murder technique,
16Irving was denying that the Nazi extermination of the Jews
17had been carried out in a systematic manner. Thus, for
18example, in 1986, two years before his change of mind on
19these issues, Irving told reporters in Brisbane,
20Australia: 'I am not attacking the figure of 6 million.
21I am not attacking the fact that the Jews were killed, but
22I am attacking or questioning whether, in fact, it was a
23tragedy ordered and organized on the very highest German
24state level, namely by Hitler himself, and I think this is
25what they find very repugnant'." Who was "they" in that

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     I do not know.
 2 Q. [Mr Rampton]     "'because if my hypothesis is correct, then it means that
 3all these Jews, and it maybe any figure, I don't look at
 4the figure concerned, if my hypothesis is'" -- sorry, it
 5is difficult to read, "'if my hypothesis is correct, it
 6indicates that the Jews were the victims of a large number
 7of rather run-of-the-mill criminal elements which exist in
 8central Europe, not just Germans, but Austrians, Latvians,
 9Lithuanians, Estonians, feeding on the endemic
10anti-Semitism of the era and encouraged by the
11brutalization which war brought about anyway'."
12     Then if we go over the page, please, and then
13there is the bit about these chaps who did it being
14motivated by revenge for bombing. 135, Professor Evans
15makes the comments: "Irving did not explain how allied
16bombing raids on Germany could have turned Latvians,
17Lithuanians and Estonians against the Jews". Maybe you
18just made a slip, did you, Mr Irving?
19 A. [Mr Irving]     It is quite clearly being misread by whoever -- Professor
20Evans has misread that. He is reading into the words
21I used a much tighter link there. Quite clearly, the
22people living in the Baltic provinces had their own
23reasons for hating the Jews. I do not propose to go into
24them here.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     I do not know whether it is a speech; it is a press

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     It is a verbatim press conference probably.
 2 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes. Paragraph 3?
 3 A. [Mr Irving]     But, as far as the German killers and the Austrian killers
 4went, certainly there are very clearly links between some
 5of the killers concerned and what they experienced in the
 6air raids.
 7 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes. I will read the next sentence, paragraph 2, if I
 8may? "He did make it clear, however, that he thought the
 9mass killings of Jews in the Second World War resulted
10from local initiatives in East Central Europe, not from
11any overall coordination by the Nazi leadership or,
12indeed, by any part of it. His view was that these local
13initiatives were excusable. It comes through clearly as
14well as he told at an interview in the same month in 1986,
15the millions of Jews or the hundreds or thousands of Jews,
16I am not going to name any figure, who were liquidated
17during the Second World War by the Germans and the
18Latvians or the Ukrainians or all the rest who carried out
19liquidations, they were the victims of a large number of
20nameless criminals into whose hands they fell on the
21Eastern Front. Mostly around Eastern Europe the
22liquidations occurred and these men acted on their own
23impulse, their own initiative, within the general
24atmosphere of brutality created by the Second World War in
25which, of course, the allied bombings had played a part".
26     Mr Irving, that first part, leave the allied

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 1bombings out of it for a moment because we will get on to
 2Dresden later in the case.
 3 A. [Mr Irving]     I think I am absolutely right. I think the documents that
 4have come to light have established that a hundred times
 6 Q. [Mr Rampton]     What?
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     The fact that the mindless criminals on the Eastern Front
 8who carried out these killing operations had a motive of
 9their own to do the killing even when they were ordered by
10Berlin or by Hitler's headquarters to stop and they
11carried on with the killing. People like Altemeyer, that
12young man we talked about earlier, the 22 year old, who
13sniggered and said, "We have got this order to stop the
14mass shootings but we are going to carry on anyway so no
15one sees it".
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That may be true, Mr Irving, but it is not
17really the point, is it?
18 A. [Mr Irving]     Oh, I am sorry. I must have missed the point that
19Mr Rampton is asking about.
20 MR RAMPTON:     Yes, you have missed the point. What you are
21denying here is system?
22 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes, of course.
23 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes, and you have readily ----
24 A. [Mr Irving]     The overall system, that link that you are looking for
25between Berlin and Hitler's headquarters.
26 Q. [Mr Rampton]     We have found it. We have found it easily going to

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 2 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
 3 Q. [Mr Rampton]     And, no doubt, therefore, to Himmler and now we have found
 4it going to Hitler, have we not?
 5 A. [Mr Irving]     There must be something between the lines that I have not
 6been able to read.
 7 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Between which lines?
 8 A. [Mr Irving]     That you have read out because where is the link to Hitler
10 Q. [Mr Rampton]     No, sorry, we are at cross-purposes. This will be my last
11question, I hope. The effect of what you are telling this
12audience in Australia, or these two audiences in
13Australia, that this was unauthorized criminality behind
14or beyond, you know, on the East?
15 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
16 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Right. I thought we had agreed this morning in court
17that, in fact, and contrary to what you are suggesting to
18these people in Australia in 1986, the whole thing was
19organized and approved by Berlin?
20 A. [Mr Irving]     Again which Jews are we talking about?
21MR RAMPTON; We are talking about the Eastern Jews. I am being
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, non-Berlin Jews.
24 MR RAMPTON:     I am using oranges and oranges.
25 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes, I think we have established quite clearly that that
26is ----

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