Irving v. Lipstadt


Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 9: Electronic Edition

Pages 161 - 165 of 194

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 1 MR IRVING:     Not in front of me, my Lord. I am derelict in that
 2respect unless Miss Rogers can find it at short notice in
 3her usually efficient way. I shall have to bring it
 4tomorrow. Your Lordship can take it as said. Although I
 5am not a member of the Bar, I would certainly not lead
 6this evidence if it was not in the files. The evidence of
 7Bimko is notorious for the fact, and this is one reason
 8why she was not introduced as a witness at the Tesh
 9trial. She would have been cross-examined on that point.
10     So this is one document, one eyewitness account,
11which is very suspect. But, Professor van Pelt, I put it
12to you that you left that sentence out of the report
13because it would have discredited the rest of her
14testimony, would it not?
15 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     I think that, if you would look -- you are now trying to
16go to my motivation. In my expert report I have tried to
17give an account of what was said, in order to draw a
18picture of how the image of Auschwitz developed in 1944
19and 1945. I have also included Polovoy's account done on
20the liberation of Auschwitz which again, as we probably
21both agree, contains a lot of friction.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]     Is this the Pravda account?
23 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Can we not track this down because it must be
25in court somewhere, presumably? Bimko's statement? It is
26note 407 on page 268.

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 1 MR IRVING:     Somebody can find the original document.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Otherwise we leave all these points hanging
 3in mid air.
 4 MR RAMPTON:     Mr Irving is quite right. Mr Irving knows where
 5everything is. It is bundle H 2 (ii).
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Could we get it out and then dispose of this
 7point one way or another, Mr Irving? I think it is
 8better, do you not?
 9 MR IRVING:     It is going to continue to hover like a vulture or
10an albatross across the court.
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is the problem.
12 MR RAMPTON:     What I said is accurate, except to this extent.
13When I say "it", all I have is a page and three-quarters
14of what Ada Bimko duly said.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Have you got page 68?
16 MR RAMPTON:     No. I have page 67. It is split up, that is
17all. I am sorry, there is lots more than I thought there
18was. If your Lordship goes --
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I have not got it yet. I would like it.
20(Same handed) thank you very much.
21 MR RAMPTON:     Yes. H 2 (iv) and turn to footnote 404, one sees
22the beginning of it. 408. Has your Lordship found
23footnote 404?
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes I have deposition of Dr Bimko.
25 MR RAMPTON:     Yes. You have got on 405, which is page 66 of the
26document itself, 5th day, Friday 21st September 1945, Ada

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 1Bimko sworn, examined by Colonel Backhouse. Has your
 2Lordship got that?
 3 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes.
 4 MR RAMPTON:     That stops and then it begins again, further
 5deposition of Ada Bimko on page 741 of the document, and
 6that stops on page 742.
 7 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I am afraid the relevant bit, or the bit that
 8Mr Irving wants, has been cut off.
 9 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     I have it here. I have it in note 408.
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     467?
11 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Footnote 408, I presume that is the section that he refers
12to, because it is talking about cylinders.
13 MR IRVING:     "In a corner of the room were two large cylinders.
14The SS man told me the cylinders contained the gas which
15passed through the pipes into the gas cylinder." That is
16on page 742, my Lord, in paragraph 4.
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, I have it.
18 MR IRVING:     There was no such equipment in Auschwitz, was
20 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No.
21 Q. [Mr Irving]     You did not quote this in your version of the report?
22 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     This report is not a discussion on the quality of
23eyewitness testimony. I have told you that before.
24 Q. [Mr Irving]     Yes, but this is a discussion now, Professor van Pelt.
25 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     OK.
26 Q. [Mr Irving]     On the quality of eyewitness testimony. It is a

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 1temptation we all fall into probably. Sometimes we want
 2to use the rest of the report because we like it, but
 3there is something nasty in the report that, if we are
 4going to manipulate, then we will leave it out. Is that
 5not so?
 6 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes. I mean, the question is there are many differences.
 7First of all, let us go over this text. "Let us go over
 8the text right now. We then walk back. Basically they
 9went through the gas chamber and it was rather dark in
10there at the time. They could not see the far end of the
11passage. There were two rails leading from the door of
12the gas chamber down the passage. On these two rails was
13a flap top wagon. The SS man told me that the wagon was
14used to take the dead bodies from the gas chamber to the
15crematorium at the other end of the passage. We then
16walked through the gas chamber and undressing room to the
17door where it entered the building. Near this door were
18some stairs. We went up these stairs and came to a room
19above the gas chamber. Across this room were two pipes,
20each about three inches thick. I did not notice whether
21there were any branch pipes leading from them. The SS man
22told me that the pipes that were in the floor were
23connected to the spray fittings in the gas chamber below.
24In the corner of the room were two large cylinders but
25I did not notice whether the cylinders were connected to
26the pipes. The SS man told me that the cylinders

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 1contained the gas which passed through the pipes into the
 2gas chamber and I then left the room".
 3     We are basically talking here about crematorium
 4number 4.
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     And the room is a room above the gas chamber?
 6 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
 7 MR IRVING:     Yes. But is any of this true, what the SS man
 8allegedly told her?
 9 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     The SS man was mocking her because she was looking at a
10new ventilation system which had been introduced to suck
11out air from the two gas chambers above the gas chambers
12of crematorium 4. A ventilation system had been created
13in 1944 to improve the ventilation of crematoria 4 and 5
14because they had not been equipped with the ventilation
15system. What happened is that she is shown the
16ventilation system and this SS man is mocking her by
17suggesting that this actually, instead of taking the air
18out, is taking the gas inside of the----
19 Q. [Mr Irving]     That is not what she says, Professor van Pelt. Is what
20she says not, "In a corner of the room were two large
22 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     But there was a ventilator up there which I presume would
23be in the cylinder and I do not think she is a
24specialist. She sees this thing above the gas chamber.
25 Q. [Mr Irving]     But you have no evidence ----
26 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     

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