Irving v. Lipstadt


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

Pages 26 - 30 of 205

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    If I am going too fast, please tell me because
 1I will stop.
 2     Here we have the staircase going into the
 3basement, second staircase added later. Underground flues
 4again. It is important of course in relationship also to
 5crematorium 1 where there was an underground flue
 6connecting the building to the chimneys. The chimney
 7seems to be standing separately, does it mean it is not
 9     OK, so that was the reconstruction. So, with
10that in mind, I feel that we can go to the actual
11blueprints and so this is a heading of one of the typical
12ones. Is there anything you would like to see again
13before we go in here?
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     No but one thing did occur to me as you were
15going through. Was there any heating in the undressing
17 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     There was no heating in the undressing room.
18 MR RAMPTON:     Could I ask one question before we leave the
19picture? It is out of order, I know.
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Mr Irving, I think that is sensible, do you
22 MR IRVING:     Perfectly, my Lord.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     We are not exactly playing by the rules at
24the moment.
25 MR RAMPTON:     Professor van Pelt, can I do it now before you
26come to the plans and the documents? You showed us the

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 1new entrance to the undressing room in 43.
 2 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
 3 Q. [Mr Irving]     Do you know of any document which refers to gas tight
 4doors for Leichenkeller 2?
 5 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No, I do not. The only document which refers to a gas
 6door quite literally is in relationship to morgue No. 1,
 7not to morgue No. 2.
 8 MR RAMPTON:     It arose out of what your Lordship asked.
 9 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, thank you.
10 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     So this is a typical heading. This is one of the original
11blueprints in early 1942 because we are dealing here with
12an adaptation. What is very important -- I am going now
13to introduce, and I am very sorry, I do not think they are
14actually in my expert reports, and I do not really know
15how to do it, but this is the very, very first sketch
16which was ever made. It was made in October 1941. It is
17in my book. It shows basically the same arrangement. The
18crematorium is slightly different. They are a number of
19things, but we are here at the ground floor. You see
20incineration hole. You see here you the autopsy rooms,
21the elevator more narrow than in the final one but there
22is the elevator. There is the entrance to the side which
23is the one with the slide and the two stairs, the coke
24storage. We have the office here, we have some bathrooms
25and so on, and then here we have the sauzuanlage as it
26says, which means the ventilators, not three around the

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 1chimney but one system preceding the chimney, the chimney
 2standing asymmetrically, and here the trash incinerator.
 3So this is the very first design. As you probably realize
 4now, the design was changed a little bit.
 5     What is quite important in this first design is
 6the particular arrangement of the underground space. The
 7only access to the underground space at this moment, and
 8we do not know what has happened here or there, but I do
 9not think there is any access on that side, but we have
10here the stairs going down with the slide, and then of
11course the elevator coming down right there.
12 MR IRVING:     Would you like to explain the significance of the
13slide please, the chute?
14 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     The chute is something one has in every underground
15morgue. For example, one can go to Satzenhausen today.
16There is a morgue and above it a dissection room and there
17is an outside entrance into that underground morgue, and
18what happens is that the slide can be interpreted both in
19a more or less kind of gross manner. One of the things is
20that the slide can be used actually to slide corpses down,
21which is probably the more unusual way to do it, but the
22other thing is that, if one carries a corpse down on the
23stretcher, then in this case one had people on the left
24and the right of the stretcher, and the stretcher can
25actually go over the middle. So this is more or less the
26width of the stretcher with two people on each side

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 1carrying it. But one could also slide the corpse down.
 2I think that is probably the more unusual thing to do. In
 3the Auschwitz museum one has actually a picture in the
 4model one created of actually a truck unloading corpses in
 5that way. Now I do not know what the evidence is for that
 6but ----
 7 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is the slide anyway.
 8 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes. So what is important here is the way the doors open
 9into the morgue. So there is a very large morgue here
10like morgue No. 2, and this is morgue No. 1, and the doors
11open inwards into the morgue in the original design.
12     Now we come to the first set of blueprints as it
13was actually drawn up, and now I have turned them. We
14have here the incineration room with the five triple
15muffle ovens. This is the chimney. Around the chimney
16the three sauzuanlage, the forced draught which becomes
17important with the proposal to heat morgue No. 1. Then
18these are motor rams, this is actually for the engine, to
19run these ventilators. This was then the trash
20incinerator, the coke storage offices and here we have the
21dissection rooms with in this case again the slide, and we
22have the stairs at the side. There are no stairs at this
23side right now.
24 MR IRVING:     Professor van Pelt, would you estimate for the
25court the distance from the closest furnace to the mouth
26of the chimney in terms of feet or metres?

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 1 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Sorry, this furnace?
 2 Q. [Mr Irving]     Well, either as shown on this drawings or as finally
 3built, just in rough terms. Would it be 70 feet?
 4 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     From this furnace?
 5 Q. [Mr Irving]     It would be fair to take the shortest. What is the
 6shortest path?
 7 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     The shortest path? This is 3 metres. Quite literally,
 8this is 6 metres. It is 20 feet. Let us say this is 10
10 Q. [Mr Irving]     I am talking about from the entrance to the actual
12 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     This one here?
13 Q. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
14 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     This is 10 feet, 20 feet, 30 feet.
15 Q. [Mr Irving]     Then up the chimney another 30 or 40 feet?
16 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Higher than that, I think. I do not think have the thing
17right now.
18 Q. [Mr Irving]     Just in rough terms. You say the total path travelled
19would be about 80 or 90 feet?
20 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     I do not really know exactly the height of the chimney
21right now, because you are below ground in the chimney so
22it is also a problem. You enter through the entrance
23below ground, so if the chimney is visible above ground
24you need to add another 6 feet for that.
25 Q. [Mr Irving]     So in simple terms a flame would have to travel about 90
26feet before it emerged?

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