Irving v. Lipstadt


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

Pages 56 - 60 of 205

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    1942? Mr Irving, I have to disappoint you on this point,
 1here and I can submit it to the court.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     It is a bit difficult to know when we are
 3getting on to air raid shelters as opposed to the
 4drawings, but shall we leave that until later?
 5 MR IRVING:     We will deal with that at a later time.
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Professor van Pelt, have you finished on the
 7blue prints now or are there further points?
 8 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No. This is crematorium No. (ii). I just want to --
 9I want to show some other things because they were
10raised. Some of the photos, if that is OK, made of the
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Mr Irving, I do not see why not.
13 MR IRVING:     I think this is a very interesting photograph, my
14Lord. It shows the reinforcing bars being put down,
15presumably, on the roof of the crematorium, is that right?
16 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No, on roof of morgue No. 2 which later becomes the
17undressing room. So we are here in the fall of 19942.
18Here we see, we see very clearly, the reinforcing bars
19right there. There is no drawings of those reinforcing
20bars. I mean, you asked me for those. There are no
21drawings of the particular thing like that. We see here
22the slab being finished.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     What did they do? Pour concrete on top of
24the reinforcing bars?
25 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes. We see already here there seems to be, these
26actually are tiles, there are some tiles, at the bottom

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 1there, and you see some of these tiles sort of hanging,
 2kind of hollow tiles, and then you get the reinforcing and
 3then the concrete is poured from that.
 4 MR IRVING:     I cannot see any tiles there, but I can see the
 5reinforcing bars very clearly. Professor van Pelt, would
 6there have been the same kind of reinforcing in the roof
 7over the mortuary No. 1 which is displayed here, the
 8collapsed roof?
 9 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     I presume so, yes.
10 Q. [Mr Irving]     The same kind of mesh of steel bars?
11 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes. Now we are looking inside the ovens. There is still
12this construction mess around it. Again, the ovens and
13here the ash, the place -- the crucible and the ash
15 Q. [Mr Irving]     Will you explain the purpose of those railway lines we can
16see there? Are they just purely for the purposes of the
18 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Which one, this one?
19 Q. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
20 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
21 Q. [Mr Irving]     They were not there at the time that the furnace stage was
22in operation?
23 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No. There is actually, these, we have here little, there
24is a -- originally, there was idea to put actually these
25rolling little trucks in crematorium No. (i), but they
26were actually never built. So what you have is quite a

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 1short, like a two metre long, little kind of iron ----
 2 Q. [Mr Irving]     Trolley?
 3 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     --- almost like little tracks going into each of the ovens
 4in the concrete, but that is it.
 5 Q. [Mr Irving]     So when Aida Bimko in her testimony refers to the railway
 6line or the rails bringing the bodies out through the
 7doors and so on, she is lying ----
 8 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     No, that is not necessarily so ----
 9 Q. [Mr Irving]     --- again?
10 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     --- because we know, for example, that one of the things
11which was done at crematorium -- and she thinks, I think
12she is talking about (iv) or (v). There is a difference.
13One of the things which happened at the sonderkommando,
14when they moved corpses from the gas chambers to the
15incineration places, and it was clearly done at bunker
16No. 2, that they actually put in some very, very light
17track to move them, to move corpses on little trollies.
18Now, there is nothing in the design for that.
19 Q. [Mr Irving]     We only have the eyewitness testimony, is that correct?
20 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Eyewitness testimony, yes. Zeigun talks about it, for
21example. Here we have the photo we discussed yesterday.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]     With the three objects on the roof.
23 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Sorry?
24 Q. [Mr Irving]     With the three objects on the roof?
25 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     With the objects on the roof.
26 Q. [Mr Irving]     Three objects on of roof?

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 1 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     And the thing i pointed out, there is this slight thing of
 2soot up there. It actually becomes more in one of the
 3next drawings. So this is taken in February 1943.
 4     One more to go round, you see here then how we
 5have reconstructed the heating pipes, how they would be
 6connected, the system which was installed which has broke
 7down. Again this is the speculation on the basis of the
 8information on the blueprint and a particular letter of
 96th March 1943. The red in this case is the heating and
10the heating insulation. We have just gone through the
11attic level and then we brought down right very close to
12the wall.
13 Q. [Mr Irving]     Is there some reason why you are telling us about the
14heating system in the mortuary?
15 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     The reason is that, of course, while it is not in the
16blueprint, it is in the letters, and the heating system in
17the mortuary is, in my opinion, again one of the
18indications that this building was transformed, that the
19morgue was being transformed for a use other than to
20simply store bodies.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Can you remind me -- I am so sorry, Mr Irving
22-- of the date of the letter about warming the morgue?
23 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     It is March 1943.
24 MR IRVING:     So you disagree with Neufert, which is the standard
25architect's Bible in Germany, ever since before World War
26II, right up to the present day, that mortuaries need both

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 1central heating and cooling?
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Mr Irving, we have had that debate, I think.
 3 MR IRVING:     Yes, thank you very much, but I wondered why he was
 4telling the court about the heating.
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, you asked him.
 6 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Sorry, the one thing I wanted to point out again is the
 7little, the little ventilation chimneys, very clearly
 8visible there. We go round once more and now we make that
 9trip around. If there is anything -- I am just going
10relatively fast, if there is anything anyone wants to ----
11 MR IRVING:     Professor van Pelt, can I ask, you mentioned those
12little chimneys, the ventilation chimneys.
13 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
14 Q. [Mr Irving]     And I mentioned the stack effect. You asked two days ago
15where the provision was for cooling the gas chambers or
16the mortuary or the morgue?
17 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     Yes.
18 Q. [Mr Irving]     The stack effect which is known to architects is why they
19put these chimneys there because the top part of the stack
20is cooler than the below ground part of the stack, and it
21generates a draught of its own, a cooling draft. That is
22one reason why they are there -- so I am informed by
23architectural experts.
24 A. [Professor Robert Jan van Pelt]     So you say that which of these -- this chimney, basically,
25is the air conditioning system?
26 Q. [Mr Irving]     

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