Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 8: Electronic Edition

Pages 141 - 145 of 191

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 1 Q. [Mr Rampton]     And you went down to the bottom of the garden, just as I
 2did, and hid in your Andersen shelter, or whatever it was
 3called?
 4 A. [Mr Irving]     We had a Morrison.
 5 Q. [Mr Rampton]     We had one of those first and then we got grand and had an
 6Andersen!
 7 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, that is enough reminiscing.
 8 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes, but what I am saying is that when you were deep in
 9Silesia, you had all the warning from the early warning
10system in Holland which is where it was based. You had
11all that time to tell you that enemy bombers were coming
12overhead heading your way.
13 MR RAMPTON:     But, Mr Irving, you do know, do you not, that they
14draw did actually draw up plans for converting the
15crematorium at Auschwitz (i) into an air raid shelter for
16the SS.
17 A. [Mr Irving]     Ah, ah, so this kind of thing did happen?
18 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Oh, yes, but that is where the SS ----
19 A. [Mr Irving]     But you kept it quiet until now?
20 Q. [Mr Rampton]     --- that, Mr Irving, is where the SS barracks was.
21 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes, well, I did not say this was for the SS.
22 Q. [Mr Rampton]     They could pop out of their living quarters into the air
23raid shelter. Do you really see a whole lot of heavily
24armed soldiers running two-and-a-half or three miles from
25the SS barracks to these cellars at the far end of the
26Birkenhau camp? I mean, Mr Irving.

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     It was, I think, common sense to take the only two
 2underground buildings which had reinforced concrete roofs
 3and which had been very heavily constructed at very great
 4expensive to the German taxpayer -- far more expensively
 5built than above ground mortuaries -- and to convert them
 6for use as air raid shelters when the alarm began at the
 7end of 1942. You can see this from the construction
 8files, that they became increasingly concerned about the
 9risk of air raids. Even if it was not just for the
10Kommandant and his private staff and family, it does not
11detract from the value of this particular explanation.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     How many people could be accommodated?
13 A. [Mr Irving]     Well, we are told 2,000 people could get in, according
14to ----
15 MR RAMPTON:     The document of 28th June 1943 suggests something,
16a gassing, sorry, an accommodation per gassing of about
171600 people, sometimes as many as 2,000. Anyway, leave
18that on one side. I still want to know how you think it
19is even realistic, never mind credible, to expect all
20those SS men to run all the way from the barracks at
21Auschwitz (i) to the far end of the camp at Birkenhau and
22climb into this air raid shelter before they got squashed
23by the allied bombs.
24 A. [Mr Irving]     I did explain to you. I do not know who this privileged
25accommodation is being provided for.
26 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Well, they are not going to get 120,000 prisoners into

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 1such a space, are they, Mr Irving?
 2 A. [Mr Irving]     No, but the records show that very large numbers of other
 3air raid protection facilities were being built around the
 4camp at this time from the most primitive nature, which
 5was of splitter trenches with primitive shelter over the
 6top, to the most complicated bunkers.
 7 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Those are still there today. You can see little sentry
 8shelters, one per person.
 9 A. [Mr Irving]     So they made provision for everybody according to their
10needs, to each according to his needs and to his status,
11no doubt.
12 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Well, my Lord, I have only one more question about air
13raid shelters and that is to be found on pages 29 and 30
14of the same section of the file, Mr Irving. I am not
15going to struggle with this. I know what it says because
16I have had it translated for me, but I am afraid I do not
17have a translation yet.
18 A. [Mr Irving]     Which file?
19 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Page 29 of this file.
20 A. [Mr Irving]     11th February 1943?
21 Q. [Mr Rampton]     That is the one. I ask you again. No need to read this
22out loud. It can be copied into the transcript in due
23course. I just ask you to read it to yourself. It is a
24page and a half, if that?
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You are probably familiar with it, are you
26not?

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     Since yesterday, my Lord. Yes, it was delivered to me
 2yesterday. I have asked all my colleagues around the
 3world what the explanation for all this is and nobody has
 4expressed very great alarm, except that I do draw
 5attention, if I may, to the reference in the third and
 6fourth lines to the provision eventually of two final
 7permanent electric corpse elevators, or lifts, and one
 8temporary corpse elevator which is to be installed as an
 9improvisation.
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Where is that on the page?
11 A. [Mr Irving]     Lines 3 and 4 of the first page of the actual letter.
12 MR RAMPTON:     Now, you have read that letter?
13 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
14 Q. [Mr Rampton]     You have seen it. I am sorry it was late coming. We only
15got it ourselves, I think, on Saturday?
16 A. [Mr Irving]     I got this at 10 past 9 yesterday evening.
17 MR RAMPTON:     Yes, I am sorry it is late.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     "Leichenaftuk"(?) is that the word for corpse
19lift?
20 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes, Leichenaftuk. They played quite an important part in
21the whole of the argument I shall develop when I come to
22get revenge on Professor van Pelt later on.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is not the right way of expressing
24yourself.
25 A. [Mr Irving]     Well, I have had to endure a public flogging now for three
26weeks.

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 1 MR RAMPTON:     Well, Mr Irving, you brought this action, if I may
 2call it that.
 3 A. [Mr Irving]     I am very much entitled to, yes.
 4 Q. [Mr Rampton]     So you must expect to be flogged publicly. If the blows
 5have been a little bit painful, I am sorry, but I am going
 6to go on landing them. Look at the second page of this
 7letter, will you?
 8 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
 9 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Am I right that, in effect, the whole of this letter is a
10frightful -- I am going to use schoolboy language --
11blowing up administered by the people of Auschwitz,
12Bischoff, to the supplier because they are behind in their
13supplying?
14 A. [Mr Irving]     That is right, yes.
15 Q. [Mr Rampton]     And he is saying in the last paragraph but one, is he not:
16 "Unless this stuff turns up quickly", and he is reciting
17a telegram he has already sent, "we cannot get this thing
18off the ground, the whole installation"?
19 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
20 Q. [Mr Rampton]     The second paragraph from the end. That is right, is it
21not, and he uses the word in the previous
22paragraph "Dringinschten" which means "most urgent", yes?
23 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
24 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Why the urgency if it is a mere air raid shelter or a
25delousing chamber?
26 A. [Mr Irving]     We are at the height of the typhus emergency, are we not?

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