Irving v. Lipstadt


Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 13: Electronic Edition

Pages 146 - 150 of 186

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
 2 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Whereas the one from East Germany, we do not have the
 3figures here but I know what they are and I am sure you
 4do. So that up to early 10th March 1945 there were 8,735
 5dead, 2,212 badly wounded, 13,718 slightly wounded, and
 6350,000 homeless and long term re-quartered, did it not?
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
 8 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Upon receipt of those documents you must have given this
 9problem some very considerable thought, did you not?
10 A. [Mr Irving]     I discussed them with my London publisher.
11 Q. [Mr Rampton]     You wrote a letter to The Times?
12 A. [Mr Irving]     My London publisher advised me to keep quiet about them.
13 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Never mind.
14 A. [Mr Irving]     This is quite important.
15 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Oh no, Mr Irving ----
16 A. [Mr Irving]     He said, you will do yourself discredit if you let people
17know that there are figures that dispute yours.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     But you form a judgment. You do not do what
19your publisher says?
20 A. [Mr Irving]     If you are dependent upon your publisher for your entire
21livelihood, sometimes you do, my Lord.
22 MR RAMPTON:     So much more so, Mr Irving, if I may be a little
23cynical for a moment, if you should go on trumpeting the
24200 to 250,000 figure, and these two documents should be
25brought forth by somebody else. Much better to come clean
26to protect yourself.

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 1 A. [Mr Irving]     This was one argument I used to the publisher, of course.
 2 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Quite right, too. You wrote to The Times. I am not going
 3to read it out. On 7th July, it is at page 56 of this tab
 42, you said that, in effect, you thought that the original
 5TB47 figures were falsified and that you had no interest
 6in promoting -- this is the last paragraph -- "or
 7perpetuating false legends and I feel it is important that
 8in this respect the records should be set straight".
 9 A. [Mr Irving]     I do not refer to TB47 in this document, of course.
10 Q. [Mr Rampton]     No, but that is what you mean, is it not?
11 A. [Mr Irving]     But you implied that I did.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, you do eat humble pie. One does not
13want to skim over this letter so quickly. In the second
14paragraph you do say you are to blame for all this, you
15got it wrong.
16 MR RAMPTON:     Yes. Quite right.
17 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
18 Q. [Mr Rampton]     You say at the end of the third paragraph -- Mr Irving,
19sometimes it is not good to be too much of a trainspotter
20-- "Two years ago I procured from a private East German
21source what purported to be extracts from the police
22president's report" -- that is the forged TB47, is it not?
23 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes, that is correct.
24 Q. [Mr Rampton]     -- "quoting the final death roll as a quarter of a
25million. The other statistics it contained were accurate
26but it is now obvious that the death roll statistic was

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 1falsified, probably in 1945".
 2 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
 3 Q. [Mr Rampton]     That is a reference to TB47.
 4 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
 5 Q. [Mr Rampton]     And a recognition that it was a forgery?
 6 A. [Mr Irving]     That is correct. No, that the figure was falsified.
 7 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes. I agree.
 8 A. [Mr Irving]     The document was genuine but the figure was falsified.
 9 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Sure. That is what you do if you are a reasonably good
10liar or forger. You get as close to the truth as possible
11but falsify the crucial fact. Now, in August 1966 you
12were ----
13 A. [Mr Irving]     Can I just draw your Lordship's attention to the fact that
14what you are looking at on that page 56 is not the actual
15page from The Times, which actually looked like this ----
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     What is the point?
17 A. [Mr Irving]     That I went to the trouble of having 500 copies of that
18letter printed at my own expense.
19 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     I see.
20 A. [Mr Irving]     That is what you are looking at there. I wonder how many
21historians would actually do something like that and sent
22it to historians around the world to correct the error
23that I thought I had made.
24 MR RAMPTON:     That is what is troubling me, Mr Irving.
25 A. [Mr Irving]     I am sure.
26 Q. [Mr Rampton]     No, for quite a different reason. In August 1966 an

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 1Italian edition of your book was about to be published,
 2was it not?
 3 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
 4 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Can you please turn to page 65 of this tab? My Lord, I am
 5now on page 10 of the tab. You wrote to your Italian
 6publisher, a Miss Calabi on 28th August 1966: "Dear
 7Miss Calabi, thank you for your letter. I have now
 8written out the few alterations that are ideally necessary
 9for my book, The Destruction of Dresden, in the light of
10the new documents I have obtained from Germany." Those
11are the two documents we have just been discussing, are
12they not?
13 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
14 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Thank you. "They are not too sweeping because, despite
15what I wrote in The Times, I do not think too much
16importance can be attached to the figures given in the new
17German documents. On the other hand, they cannot be
18ignored. I have marked a copy of the Corgy edition of the
19book and I am sending it to you separately. I do not
20think it is necessary to print my letter to The Times as
21an appendix, as this would call unnecessary attention to
22the new documents. If you have any urgent comments, I am
23at the following address in Spain, yours sincerely". What
24does that letter mean, Mr Irving? You tell me. I know
25what I think it means, but you tell me.
26 A. [Mr Irving]     I have no idea. This letter was written 34 years ago.

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 1Would you run your own hypothesis past me?
 2 Q. [Mr Rampton]     My hypothesis is a suggestion which you will need to deal
 3with. You had written to The Times. You had withdrawn,
 4and you had accepted, on the basis of those two documents,
 5that the original figures were pie in the sky. But now
 6you do not want to draw attention to them. Why not?
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     I will tell you what puzzles me, Mr Rampton, and that is
 8why you have not included in this bundle the actual
 9changes that I made, so his Lordship can judge whether
10they were apposite or not. I have them here and they are
11in the little bundle I gave your Lordship this morning.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I think we ought to look at them.
13 MR RAMPTON:     It is quite right. We should look at page 63, Mr
14Irving, which is in fact Montadori, the publisher, writing
15to you. She says on 15th July 1966: "Dear Mr Irving,
16I have seen your letter to the editor of The Times on the
17figures of the bombing of Dresden in 1945 and I wonder
18whether you would like us to publish it as an appendix to
19a possible reprint of a populicia Dresda".
20 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
21 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Your response was, I had better keep off that, I do not
22want too much attention to be drawn to these two new
23documents. Now why?
24 A. [Mr Irving]     Why do we not just look and see the changes I sent to

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