Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 12: Electronic Edition

Pages 56 - 60 of 154

<< 1-5151-154 >>

 1 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     And asking you whether the words that Hitler, apparently,
 2used actually contemplated the killing of the Hungarian
 3Jews?
 4 A. [Mr Irving]     He says that how Jews who refused to work are shot, and so
 5on, yes, that is killing. But this is the grizzly logic
 6he introduces. He says, "You can always find excuses to
 7kill them if you want to". And I am not going to argue
 8with that, but this falls far short of some overall order
 9for the Final Solution, unless your Lordship may feel
10differently, but I think ...
11 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     No. I am just asking you what your view as an historian
12is.
13 A. [Mr Irving]     Not on the basis of that one sentence. I would hesitate
14to hang such a major conclusion on just one sentence like
15that. I tend to attach more importance to him saying, "We
16could hardly do that" which tends to go very much more
17strongly in the opposite direction. Whether it was said
18on one day or the next day, I do not think is of great
19moment.
20 MR RAMPTON:     My Lord, I would like now to move on to something
21else which, I am afraid, is going to have to be
22Reichskristallnacht. That is because the Dresden file --
23Dresden is quite complicated chronologically and it is
24very desirable that everybody has the same set of papers
25in the same order. It is not yet ready. It will be ready
26tomorrow.

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     My problem with the Dresden file is that a lot of the
 2letters that you have included in it are illegible. It
 3may well be the same in his Lordship's file.
 4 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes, I am told that may well be right.
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I have not got it.
 6 MR RAMPTON:     There is not much point including ----
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     But if I know that you are going to be dealing with that
 8tomorrow, then I will read the microfilm tonight of the
 9original letters so that I have boned up on them.
10 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes, I think that is probably a good idea. But, my Lord,
11I have another problem which is though I have got a
12Reichskristallnacht file, your Lordship has not yet. It
13is being copied at the moment. I would prefer if it were
14possible to wait until it is ready. It went away to be
15copied this morning. It should be ready quite soon,
16should it not.
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I am bound to say I am finding -- I mean,
18I can understand why you want to go to the source
19material, but I am finding it usually possible to follow
20these things in Professor Evans's report.
21 MR RAMPTON:     Well, in that case ----
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I mean, Mr Irving can always say, "Well, you
23know, Professor Evans has got it wrong or he has missed
24something crucial out", but it does not seem to me always
25necessary to go to the original source material. Is that
26wrong? Do you disagree with that?

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 1 MR RAMPTON:     I agree with it when it is right and I disagree
 2when it is wrong.
 3 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That sounds reasonable. Is it often wrong
 4though.
 5 MR RAMPTON:     I do think the Reichskristallnacht documents are
 6important. I am not talking about postwar testimony or
 7anything like that, selective interviewing or whatever.
 8I am talking about the contemporaneous documents. They
 9provide a circumstantial base -- quite a lot of it not
10even mentioned in Mr Irving's Goebbels' book -- for
11proposing that it is more or less certain that, contrary
12to what Mr Irving contends, Hitler knew perfectly well
13what was going on and probably authorized it.
14     That being so, I am afraid I think it is
15probably helpful, at the very least, to have the file.
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     The logic is that we all go away until the
17photocopying has been done which I am a bit reluctant to
18do.
19 MR RAMPTON:     I know, but, on the other hand ----
20 A. [Mr Irving]     I do consider the original documents are of importance in
21some cases.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, in some case that may be, but as a
23general ----
24 A. [Mr Irving]     Because I work from original documents in preference
25to ----
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, I know you do and I respect that, but,

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 1as general rule, one can manage very well with the
 2quotations that one finds in Professor Evans. I am sure
 3there are odd instances where you need to go to the source
 4material.
 5 A. [Mr Irving]     I think Professor Evans' report is highly tendentious and
 6I am very loath to rely too much on it.
 7 MR RAMPTON:     In this particular case, we say because it is not
 8ready, we say nostra culpa, nostra maxima culpa, if it be
 9needed. It is our fault, it should have been, but I think
10in the end, if I may say so, it will save time because
11what is going to happen, I know, and quite naturally, I am
12going to refer to something in Evans and Mr Irving is
13going to say, "Well, I am sorry, I do not accept that, we
14have got to look at the document"?
15 A. [Mr Irving]     Almost certainly.
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     When is it going to be ready?
17 MR RAMPTON:     It will certainly be ready -- someone has just
18gone to phone to check. Can we take five or 10 minutes to
19find out what is happening and I will come back into court
20and report to your Lordship. I do apologise. I mean, we
21should have had it ready.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     If we cannot do Dresden and we cannot do
23Reichskristallnacht, is there anything else we can do?
24 MR RAMPTON:     Well, there is nothing much of any interest left,
25apart from Hitler's trial in 1924. That is very easy. I
26can ask one more question in relation to early Hitler

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 1which if I get the answer "yes" puts that in the cupboard.
 2(To the witness): Mr Irving, do you accept from his own
 3written and recorded words that Hitler was deeply
 4anti-Semitic from, at any rate, the end of the First World
 5War?
 6 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes -- until he came to power.
 7 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes. Do you also agree that anti-Semitism in one form or
 8another was one of the foundations of the Nazi, the
 9NSDAP's, what shall we call it, political platform?
10 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes, indeed.
11 Q. [Mr Rampton]     My Lord ----
12 A. [Mr Irving]     That was one of the 24 points.
13 Q. [Mr Rampton]     My Lord, that gets that out of the way.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Does that get rid of Hitler's trial in 1924
15altogether, as it were?
16 MR RAMPTON:     No, it does not.
17 A. [Mr Irving]     I am accused of having distorted again.
18 Q. [Mr Rampton]     I am sorry?
19 A. [Mr Irving]     I am accused of having distorted again, am I not?
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, looting the shop?
21 A. [Mr Irving]     No, the choice of witnesses, that I should have known,
22I should have known more about the witness that I rely on.
23 MR RAMPTON:     Tell me, when you relied on the witness Hofmann?
24 A. [Mr Irving]     Hofmann, yes.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Did you know that he was a long standing Nazi mate of
26Hitler's?

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