Irving v. Lipstadt


Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 11: Electronic Edition

Pages 156 - 160 of 205

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 1 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Addressed by Topf to the central building people at
 2Auschwitz. On the second page of that, the penultimate
 3entry 43/204/1, it reads: "Entwesungsanlage", does it not?
 4 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
 5 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Whatever it is that it was going to cost has been
 6scratched out by somebody. That matters not. Can you
 7then turn back to the first document which is dated 13th
 8April 1943?
 9 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
10 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Look at the penultimate item in that. What is
12 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Aufstellung?
13 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes. This document is called an "aufstellung".
14 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Aufstellung means to actually erect, so this particular
15use, I think it means quite literally it is a list.
16I would interpret it like that, but it also could be the
17aufstellung means things that have been erected or that
18are to be erected.
19 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Then the penultimate item reads: "To Topf
20Entwesungsofen". What are "Entwesungsofen"?
21 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     "Entwesungsofen" are disinfestation ovens or vessels.
22They are like autoclaves really.
23 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Using what substance or material to achieve the Entwesung?
24 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Hot air or hot steam.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Is there a copy of the Leuchter report anywhere up there?
26Has anybody got one? I am doing this from memory because

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 1I gave mine up to somebody. Do you see the front cover
 3 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
 4 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Can you hold it up so that I can see? I cannot see from
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Bottom right.
 7 MR RAMPTON:     No, it is not. That I think is an oven for
 8burning corpses.
 9 MR IRVING:     The contents are the same.
10 MR RAMPTON:     It does not matter. Forget it. The cover is
11different from mine. Forget it, Professor van Pelt. It
12was only going to be an illustration. Do you say that an
13Entwesungsofen would not be a Zyklon-B piece of equipment?
14 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No. The Zyklon-B, they did not have an ofen for that,
15first of all. They were called Kammer and they are
16larger, and they would be called gas Kammer. So there is
17a very specific product. A Topf Entwesungsofen is a very
18specific product they sell. They manufacture it in Erfurt
19and they sell as a single piece. So, yes, this would not
20have been a Zyklon installation.
21 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Is it in any sense permissible, sensible or clever to try
22to translate "Entwesungsofen" into "Vergasungskeller"?
23 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No. They have nothing to do with each other.
24 Q. [Mr Rampton]     So do you have an estimate of what these two hot air or
25steam autoclaves were for at crematorium 2?
26 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     The interesting thing, of course -- I can speculate one

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 1way and I can base myself ----
 2 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Offer your best guess.
 3 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     I give two best guesses. One is that since the
 4sonderkommando were going to live there and they lived in
 5an enclosed compound there, they would need to have some
 6kind of disinfestation installation. It is a first guess,
 7but the problem is that we do not have really any other
 8documentation except these two things. The more likely
 9guess, however, is that these were actually going to be
10the Entwesungsofen which were going to be installed in the
11Zentralzaume (?). What was happening is that since
12December 1942, right between crematorium 3 and crematorium
134, the SS was first planning, and then from mid 1943
14onwards they were constructing, a large new delousing
15installation which did not use Zyklon, but only used the
16Topfentwesungsofen and autoclaves. So, when one actually
17starts to look at these documents and also at the Wedach
18document which was introduced by Mr Irving, we are
19actually dealing, I mean the Wedach document, we are
20clearly with activity that is going on for the
21Zentralzaune. So the problem, of course, in the document
22on 13th April is that it mentions crematorium No. 2 right
23in that sentence, and I have no explanation, I have no
24other documentation to either confirm that they were at
25that time creating these two entwesungs ofen or had
26ordered it for the crematorium. At the same time I know

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 1that a lot of that ordering is being done for the
 2Zentralzaune which is being constructed right next door,
 3and that is where I would like to leave it.
 4 MR IRVING:     If you look at the last page, my Lord, on that you
 5will see there is a further reference to disinfestation
 6equipment for crematorium No. 2 in August.
 7 MR RAMPTON:     Yes, that is right. Absolutely right. That is
 8where I started as a matter of fact.
 9 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, that is what I thought. Why do you get
10August, because that is the date of the document?
11 MR RAMPTON:     That is the date. It is 20th August, the
12document. The top right-hand corner, my Lord.
13     Do you see any reason, Professor van Pelt, to
14disassociate the August invoice relating to
15Entwesungslager for crematorium, it does not say there,
16crematoria 2 and 3, from the piece of paper relating to
17the two Topf Entwesungsofen for crematorium 2?
18 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No, they seem to belong together, but, you know ----
19 Q. [Mr Rampton]     In this same part of the folder, I warned you this would
20be disorderly, we find at page 6, this is written on the
21bottom right-hand corner I hope in red ink, we find what
22I think is the Topf patent application for its
23multi-muffle furnace, do we not?
24 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     I would not dream of asking you to read it out or anything
26like that. I am told that I got this in a muddle when

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 1I was cross-examining Mr Irving. Would you just explain
 2what this is and how it relates to what you have told us?
 3 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Can you give my the reference again,
 4Mr Rampton?
 5 MR RAMPTON:     Yes, it is in tab 4 of K 2 and it is page 6. It
 6is a long document, ending up with a drawing on page 18.
 7 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Shall I explain, shall I go paragraph by paragraph and
 8give a summary of the paragraph?
 9 Q. [Mr Rampton]     No, nothing like that. I would just like you to summarize
10what the effect of the patent application is on your
11judgment about how the incineration was in fact carried
12out, according to the accounts of the eyewitnesses, in the
13big crematorium at Auschwitz.
14 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     This patent application is based on, the proposal for this
15patent application is to create a furnace in which one
16continuously feeds corpses at the top, and which by their
17own weight, so to speak, these corpses fall through a
18number of shelves, so to speak, and in that process are
19being reduced to ashes. It refers back to the experience
20with mutli-muffle ovens which is at the end of page 1 and
21No. 2, that that one wants to make something which is even
22working even faster. I just want to go very, very quickly
23through this, because the important thing here, of course,
24would be also ----
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     It may be quicker, Professor van Pelt, rather than your
26scanning that long and no doubt extremely boring document,

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