Irving v. Lipstadt


Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 10: Electronic Edition

Pages 146 - 150 of 215

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     We have dealt with the eyewitness in some detail,
 1notion that so far the mass extermination of 500,000
 2victims in this building here, krammer No. 2, rests,
 3apparently, on a number of very shaky eyewitnesses --
 4I think I have shaken two or three them -- and on certain
 5other documents that we have not really properly
 7     Can you talk to the court, please, if I say to
 8you what architectural drawings are there relating to
 9crematorium No. (ii) and, in particular, to the alleged
10gas chamber in mortuary No. 1, can you tell the court
11about which one document in particular would be the one
12you would say was something close to a smoking gun -- if
13there is such a document, such a blueprint?
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:      Do you mean Kuhler? Is he included in the
16 MR IRVING:      Kuhler we can come to later, my Lord. I am
17interested in Kuhler, obviously, because that will bring
18us back to the holes, and I am going to keep on driving
19holes in this case until your Lordship appreciates the
20significance of the holes, or their absence. So I want to
21do that kind of scattered throughout these two days.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:      Yes.
23 THE WITNESS:      So we are talking about blueprints?
24 MR IRVING:      We are talking about drawings, architectural
25drawings. If there is anything in any of those drawings
26which you considered to be very suspicious?

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 1 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      I have said in my report that the way the materials should
 2be interpreted is as a convergence of evidence and not in
 3terms of a single smoking gun. There are in the documents
 4in Auschwitz, of course, documents which are more
 5difficult to bring into harmony with the thesis that there
 6would have been no gas chamber, no homicidal gas chamber,
 7in crematorium (ii). For example, there is a letter, the
 8notorious vergasungs letter, the keller letter of 29th
 9January 1943; but since I am being asked about blueprints
10and I will limit my answer to blueprints, there is not one
11blueprint which by and in itself is a smoking gun.
12 Q. [Mr Irving]      But you have repeatedly talked in radio programmes on the
13BBC, for example, the Horizon programme, you said, "We
14have the blue prints", have you not? "We have the
15drawings"? I appreciate ----
16 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      But we have to -- we have the blueprints as historical
17evidence and one can draw conclusions out of the
18historical evidence.
19 Q. [Mr Irving]      That is not the way you put it, of course. You were
20rather more specific. You said: "We have the drawings of
21the gas chambers".
22 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      But it allows us, these drawings allow us to reconstruct
23the history of these things, the way these things were
24constructed, and the history includes a certain amount the
25history of the use and the modification of these buildings
26as a killing machine.

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 1     Now, there are certain drawings which certainly
 2pop out of the bundle of drawings which is preserved. For
 3example, a very, very important drawing, but again only
 4seen in context, would have been the modification of the
 5basement done by Walter Dejaco in December 1942. But
 6again that drawing by itself does not say anything. That
 7drawing has to be compared to the drawings that preceded
 8that drawing.
 9     So, you know, I am happy to go -- the problem is
10I do not know if everyone has the drawings -- I am happy
11to go through a very detailed explication of those
12drawings, but given the fact we already have difficulty
13with Olaire before, I do not really know to do that
14because I will have to point at these things which are not
15labelled and these are, you know, those blueprints
16are ----
17 MR IRVING:      We can get the drift of what your arguments are
18going to be. I just wanted to establish, though, that
19when you said these things on this BBC Horizon programme
20(of which we have the transcript here) of course, you are
21not reading from a script, you are just talking from
22memory, so to speak? If you were writing it, you would
23not have said that?
24 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      No, there was no script of that. There was no script.
25I do not exactly know what I said, so maybe you can read
26it to the court and I can have a look at it and, you know,

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 1I can comment on it.
 2 Q. [Mr Irving]      Yes. But the point I am making is that you are much more
 3careful when you write than when you speak?
 4 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      There is nothing really in the Horizon programme which at
 5the moment I feel I would have to take back. I am quite
 6comfortable with what I said in that programme.
 7 Q. [Mr Irving]      Well, except that you also referred to a document, but
 8I am not on documents at present in terms which were
 9inappropriate because it turns out that what you said was
10not borne out by the document. Do you remember that
11document, the one relating to the electric supply not
12being adequate, and you reversed the order of killing and
14 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      Mr Irving, in that document at a certain moment
15I transposed the word, I think, sonderbehantlung(?) and
16incineration from one to the other.
17 Q. [Mr Irving]      Yes, these things happen, do they not?
18 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      But the meaning, the meaning of what I said is exactly the
19same as the meaning of the document.
20 Q. [Mr Irving]      Yes. These things happen. It was not any perverse
21manipulation of the evidence in any way; it was just ----
22 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      Unlike what some people on the web suggest? No, it was no
23perverse manipulation.
24 Q. [Mr Irving]      I have not suggested that, have I ----
25 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      I do not know if you have suggested it.
26 Q. [Mr Irving]      --- on my web site, no? That is not the point I am trying

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 1to make.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:      If that is not suggested, we can move on,
 3can we not?
 4 MR IRVING:      I am your Lordship appreciates the reason why I put
 5the question. So what you are saying is there is no one
 6drawing -- we have established that the eye witness
 7evidence is two legged rather than five legged. We have
 8now heard that there is no one drawing which supports the
 9identity of that underground mortuary as being a gas
10chamber either?
11 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      No, but we can look now at two or three drawings together
12and then we start to look, we start to observe some very
13weird things and some modifications made between one
14drawing and the other drawing which certainly starts to
15point out at a use of ----
16 Q. [Mr Irving]      An unusual use?
17 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]      --- morgue No. 1 which is used which is certainly not
18suggestive of either an air raid shelter or that of any
19other kind of non-genocidal use.
20 Q. [Mr Irving]      Can you tell us roughly what those discrepancies are on --
21shall I feed clues?
22 MR RAMPTON:      My Lord, I hardly think this is satisfactory. We
23have the plans in the folder.
24 MR IRVING:      Indeed, yes.
25 MR RAMPTON:      It is quite a detailed exercise. I have been
26through it many times. It may or may not make sense, but

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