Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 7: Electronic Edition

Pages 101 - 105 of 199

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 1 MR RAMPTON:     Because then, my Lord, it is very easy, if you
 2will not accept then that I have to lay out the evidence
 3which would have been accessible to him if he had bothered
 4to look before opening his mouth.
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, but only in the sort of general sense
 6of, let us put it as you might cross-examine, Mr Irving,
 7are you aware that there are statements made by ... and
 8then we can list them and name them and give them
 9positions within Auschwitz, Hoess and all the rest of
10them; did you read a word of their evidence?
11 MR RAMPTON:     That is right, the answer will be "no", what you
12did do, Mr Irving -- one has to know that this is his
13position.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I know, that is why I tried to --
15 MR RAMPTON:     I know, well, he has not come clean, to use your
16Lordship --
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     No, I disavow that expression now.
18 MR RAMPTON:     If that is the position, that is fine, Professor
19van Pelt can go back to Canada, specifically though
20Mr Irving has to accept, before that can happen, that the
21Liechter Report is indeed bunk and very easily detected
22bunk, because what a responsible historian cannot do,
23unless he is motivated by some sinister ulterior motive,
24is nail his colours to the mast, as he said he did,
25without critical review of the mast to which he is nailing
26his colours, namely the Liechter Report. And that is

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 1exactly what he did.
 2     If he will concede that that was, to put it
 3neutrally, a complete mistake, because Liechter is bunk,
 4if he will concede first that a lot of the other evidence
 5is freely available to anybody who bothers go and look at
 6it; a lot has been published in books. But that he did
 7not care to look at it. But nonetheless went about his
 8Holocaust denial in these various forums, why then we can
 9close down the evidence, apart from what he said in these
10various places.
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, thank you very much, Mr Rampton.
12Mr Irving, I do not think we will be able to quite
13conclude this argument, but I think the ball is in your
14court, because the admissibility of this evidence and how
15much detail we need to go into in regard to it seems to me
16to depend, to an extent, what you are going to say about
17it.
18 MR IRVING:     Which your Lordship does not know yet, of course.
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Which I do not know yet and you do not really
20have to tell me, we can deal with this on the hoof as we
21go through your cross-examination. It may have to come to
22that. But I have to have an eye on how long this trial is
23going to last and it seems to me --
24 MR IRVING:     Well, I threw a lifeline to your Lordship.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is not the predominant consideration, it
26has to be a feature of my thinking, it seems to me there

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 1may well be sense in dealing with the -- I have used the
 2camp official's eyewitness accounts as an example, dealing
 3with that body of evidence in a rather broad way because
 4if you say, "well, I was not familiar with the detail of
 5it", then Mr Rampton may achieve what he needs for his
 6purpose by putting to you, in effect, you shut your eyes
 7to it deliberately.
 8 MR IRVING:     I can say in two lines if that will assist you what
 9my position on the four or five camp officials will be;
10that I was not familiar with the evidence of the lower
11camp officials. I was partially familiar with the
12evidence of Camp Commandant Hoess. I have reasons to
13discount that evidence, which I will bring out during
14cross-examination of the experts. But the reasons have
15only become apparent to me now I have done the research
16for the trial. But at the time , of course, I had this
17gut instinct against eyewitnesses in the first place.
18I have always preferred to use concrete documents rather
19than statements of people, for whatever reason. My Lord
20that does not help your Lordship very much at this stage.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     It does not help us in the sense that it does
22not enable me to make a ruling which will ...
23 MR IRVING:     I am hoping that your Lordship will be able to
24make --
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Direct which evidence we can safely exclude
26and which we admit, I am afraid.

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 1 MR IRVING:     Your Lordship is now aware of my arguments as
 2against fraudulence in this action. I am hoping your
 3Lordship will make determinations from time to time as to
 4what is admissible and what is not on the issues as
 5pleaded, and possibly at a later date, once you have heard
 6my remarks about the eyewitness, or went a bit further
 7down the road we have had a chance to cross-examine
 8Professor van Pelt, then you can possibly even make a
 9ruling on the basic issue as to the admissibility of what
10happened at Auschwitz or not, if I can put it like that.
11 MR RAMPTON:     My Lord, can I add one thing, I know it is a
12little irregular, but it may help. Mr Irving says that
13now with hindsight he sees reasons to doubt what, for
14example, Hoess said, I believe that that is an irrelevant
15observation. What he now sees as being flaws in Hoess'
16evidence is quite beside the point, we are not concerned
17with what he now sees; what we are concerned with is with
18Mr Irving's state of mind, his bona fides, at the time
19when he made these denial statements.
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, but that really is having the best of
21both worlds, is it not? You are wanting me to see what
22Hoess said and to be satisfied that he is correct in what
23he says.
24 MR RAMPTON:     No.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     But you seek to prevent Mr Irving from
26showing why he does not accept Hoess.

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 1 MR RAMPTON:     No, my Lord, that it is perhaps a slight
 2misapprehension, it is probably my fault, on your
 3Lordship's part. I do want you to see what Mr Hoess says,
 4in just the same way as Mr Irving could have seen it
 5before he spoke in public. I do not need your Lordship to
 6accept what Hoess said is true.
 7 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is where I think I joined issue with you
 8earlier on.
 9 MR RAMPTON:     I need your Lordship simply to say this --
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     The evidence was there.
11 MR RAMPTON:     This evidence is suggestive of a strong
12probability it was there, and it is not such obviously
13rubbish evidence that one would join immediately with
14Mr Irving and say, "no, there were no gas chambers at
15Auschwitz"; quite the contrary. That is all I need to do
16because all I am doing by looking at the evidence is
17suggesting what an open-minded, careful historian would
18have found if he had looked at the evidence.
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     But you see open-minded, careful --
20 MR RAMPTON:     Open-minded, leave the "careful" out of it.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, "careful" is not the ...
22 MR IRVING:     Open-minded historian without an ulterior motive,
23beyond informing the public of the truth would have found
24if he had looked.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is the right formulation, yes. I will,
26if you would find it helpful, both of you, make a ruling,

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