Irving v. Lipstadt


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

Pages 176 - 180 of 191

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    Mr Rampton, at some stage can we elicit
 1stage we have to know the answer to that, do we not?
 2 MR RAMPTON:     Actually no, because I have always said, as I have
 3said earlier, I think last week, that he leapt on to
 4Leuchter when it must have been perfectly obvious, if he
 5had been interested in finding out, by thinking about it
 6and asking if the Leuchter was rubbish, he stuck with
 7Leuchter, despite the fact that it is rubbish. He has
 8never taken the trouble to go to Auschwitz and look and
 9I suggest two things flow from that. One is that he is
10not just a rotten historian but a bent historian because
11he lends his weight to Holocaust denial without having the
12materials to do so, and second, that he has an ulterior
13motive for that disreputable stance.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I follow that, but does the question not need
15to at least to be asked at some stage?
16 MR RAMPTON:     By all means.
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well all this evidence is out there. Did
18you consult it and, if you did, why did you reject it?
19I think we went through this.
20 MR RAMPTON:     I thought that I had done that. He had never been
21to Auschwitz.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     No, certainly never been to Auschwitz.
23 MR RAMPTON:     Did you ever go to Vienna and look at the record
24of the trial of these people?
25 A. [Mr Irving]     No. I can simplify the matter by saying that, whenever
26there is an Auschwitz stamp on a document like this one,

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 1I have not seen it before the trial.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You follow the point I am trying to get at.
 3There is a lot of evidence which the Defendants point to
 4as demonstrating beyond the shadow of doubt that there
 5were gas chambers at Auschwitz and they were used to kill
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     My Lord, I strongly disagree with that statement.
 8 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     When you read Leuchter, I appreciate that you then formed
 9a view, but to what extent did you take into account the
10other evidence outside Leuchter and his examination of
11those samples?
12 A. [Mr Irving]     Let me take it seriatim. First of all, I disagree with
13the fact that we have seen a volume of evidence that there
14were indeed gas chambers. I do not think that we have
15seen any evidence yet. We have seen evidence which can be
16read that way if you are so inclined. Secondly, I am told
17that I never tried to go to Auschwitz. In 1992
18I contacted the director of state archives at Auschwitz,
19Mr Piper and he refused to assist me. So it was quite
20evident that I would get no assistance whatsoever from the
21Auschwitz state archives.
22 MR RAMPTON:     We have been through this last week.
23 A. [Mr Irving]     No, we have not.
24 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes, we have.
25 A. [Mr Irving]     No, we have not.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     It is new to me.

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     In 1998 when I attempted to go to Auschwitz with the BBC
 2team, Auschwitz ruled that I would not be allowed to set
 3foot on the compound, on their campus or to visit their
 4state archives.
 5 MR RAMPTON:     I do not want to go over old ground, but I am
 6going to in a minute, Mr Irving.
 7 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Can he finish the answer? I personally think
 8this is quite important. That was a closed book to you
 9but there are other sources of information.
10 A. [Mr Irving]     I have therefore never seen any documents that have come
11from the Auschwitz state archives. In 1992 I went to the
12Moscow state archives where the other major collection is,
13which I used only in order to obtain the Goebbels
14diaries. As a result of the machinations of my opponents,
15the Moscow state archives were thereupon closed to me and
16I was informed that I would not be allowed to return
17there, so I am told. So that also closed that avenue of
18access to any documents which come from the Moscow state
19archives which were also not known to me until shortly
20before this trial.
21 MR RAMPTON:     I am going to pursue that, Mr Irving.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I am so sorry, Mr Rampton. I just want to
23get the complete answer and then by all means pursue any
24of it. So that, you say, closed off the Moscow archives
25as well. But you would accept, would you not, that there
26is whole lot of material and data to be found in all sorts

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 1of places, some of which is before the court and a lot of
 2it in Professor van Pelt's report, to which you could have
 3had access, had you been so minded? Is that not right?
 4 A. [Mr Irving]     My Lord, the litany of woe continues. I am banned from
 5the Institute of History in Munich, thanks to exactly the
 6same campaign. I am banned from the German federal
 7archives with effect from July 1st 1993, thanks to exactly
 8the same campaign. I have faced mounting difficulties in
 9continuing to do research. When I tried recently to get
10documents from the Wiener Library in London, which
11is exactly the same kind of historical archives, the
12director of the Wiener Library archives said that it would
13refuse to assist me.
14 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     So what it really comes to -- forgive me, Mr Rampton,
15I will stop after this question -- is that really almost
16every avenue, you say, has been closed to you for one
17reason or another and at one stage or another?
18 A. [Mr Irving]     At one stage or another. I am not saying that it has been
19closed over the entire period. It is fair to say that.
20 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     Might it be said against you that in that case it might
21have been more sensible, when were you giving talks about
22whether the Holocaust had happened or not, to make it
23clear that you really, beyond Leuchter, had almost no
24historical material available to you?
25 A. [Mr Irving]     My Lord, there had been endless publications about
26precisely these matters, for example the suspect document,

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 1which I have paid due attention to. I have not had access
 2to the archives myself, but I have had the opportunity of
 3benefiting from the expertise of others.
 4 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     But my question was, should you not have made that clear
 5to your audiences when you were saying, well, it is plain
 6that battleship Auschwitz had sunk?
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     I think I made it quite plain to the audiences that the
 8initial impetus for making that statement was the Leuchter
 9report with the chemical results contained in that report,
10which I still considered to be a very valuable starting
11point for the whole controversy.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I see. Thank you. That now clarifies my
14 MR RAMPTON:     I am sorry, Mr Irving, I simply cannot accept
15anything really of what you have said, apart from the fact
16that you have been banned from various places, but the
17thrust of it I reject in its entirety. Do you have the
18first of the Auschwitz files, please, the big one? Can
19you turn to the correspondence tab (which I think is tab
208) and to a letter of 30th October 1989? I do not have
21the page number, I am afraid.
22 A. [Mr Irving]     I am hoping his Lordship will read all the letters under
23tab 8.
24 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes. I am hoping he will too but that is not the point.
25It is marked with a 10. Is that a letter from Mr Weber to

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