Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 14: Electronic Edition

Pages 41 - 45 of 175

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    Yes, indeed, but I tried to bring this up and his Lord
 1said, "We are not interested in whether this building has
 2been faked after the war or not".
 3 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Mr Irving, do you never answer an overt question?
 4 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is a total misrepresentation of what
 5I said, but let us move on..
 6 A. [Mr Irving]     Well, I tried to bring up crematorium No. (i) in order to
 7get the admission from the witness that it has been built
 8in 1948 by the Poles and at this point your Lordship
 9intervened, you will remember, and said, "This is of" ----
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, I am not going to go through that again
11because the transcript is there, but let us get back to
12Almeyer.
13 MR RAMPTON:     We will just read on, and this is where Almeyer is
14a real killer for you revisionists, is it not, Mr Irving?
15 A. [Mr Irving]     I do not know. I will have to see what it says.
16 Q. [Mr Rampton]     "We were not allowed to come close and only the next day
17the bunker, gas chamber, was opened. The doctor told that
18the people died within half a minute to a minute. In the
19meantime, in Birkenhau, close to the burial sites, two
20empty houses were equipped by the construction office with
21gas chambers. One house had two chambers, the other
22four. These houses were designed as bunkers 1 and 2.
23Each chamber accommodated about 50 to 150 people.
24     "At the end of January or February, the first
25gassings were undertaken. The Commando was called "SK"
26and the camp commander had put it under the direct

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 1authority of Untersturmfuhrer Grabner and was again led
 2and brought into action by Hoessler". That is different
 3from Hoess. "The area was surrounded by notices and
 4marked as a security zone and, moreover, encircled by
 5eight guardposts from the Commando.
 6     "From that moment onwards the camp doctor sorted
 7from the arriving transports immediately the inmates and
 8those who were destined to be gassed. They had
 9instructions to select for gassing those crippled by
10illness, those over 55 years of age who could not work and
11children up to 11 or 12 years". From a revisionist point
12of view, that is a catastrophic account, is it not?
13 A. [Mr Irving]     But I also draw attention to the frequent footnotes that
14Professor van Pelt has quite rightly written in saying
15this is wrong, that is wrong, the following is wrong, this
16is an incorrect account, the time was longer, the time was
17shorter. If one knows that, what kind of credence can you
18attach to a report like that?
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     In relation to the passage Mr Rampton has
20just read, is that not an accurate account of, I do not
21know, is it crematoria (iv) and (v), or (iii) and (iv)?
22 MR RAMPTON:     No. In that passage it is bunkers 1 and 2.
23 A. [Mr Irving]     It is talking about the bunkers 1 and 2, which we have not
24talked about and which, as far as I am concerned, actually
25existed.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     My question really is this. Is there

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 1anything wrong with that as an account, so far as you see
 2it?
 3 A. [Mr Irving]     I see nothing wrong with that as an account, my Lord, but
 4then, of course, as I have to keep reminding the court,
 5I am not a Holocaust historian. I have never set myself
 6up as a Holocaust historian. I have not written about the
 7Holocaust in books or otherwise. All I know is that this
 8is a flawed account, if I can use that word. Professor
 9van Pelt himself describes it as being inaccurate in very
10many respects, and this is the kind of problems which
11would no doubt have been brought out, had I ever sat down
12and read the whole file and start comparing it with all
13the others.
14 MR RAMPTON:     Before suggesting that this flawed account, put
15into his mouth by the brutal British interrogators, was
16tortured out of him by Colonel Scotland?
17 A. [Mr Irving]     I am talking about the figures of course, both in the
18English letter and in the German letter, June 4th. I said
19it becomes more lurid with each subsequent version, first
20no gassings, then 50, then 15,000 in all. I suggest brute
21force by interrogators perhaps.
22 Q. [Mr Rampton]     So you are quite prepared to accept that these accounts,
23he goes on on a subsequent page to give an account of
24gassings of crematorium (ii) in Berkenhau?
25 A. [Mr Irving]     We have exactly same problem with Rudolf Hoess. We know
26Rudolf Hoess was badly manhandled and no doubt he richly

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 1deserved it, but his account also became more lurid with
 2each successive interrogation.
 3 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Mr Irving, your answers are in danger of becoming
 4characteristically inconsistent, if I may say so. You
 5were worried that Colonel Scotland may have tortured these
 6numbers, or threatened to do so, out of Almeyer, is that
 7right?
 8 A. [Mr Irving]     That is not actually what I said. I said his account
 9becomes more lurid with each successive interrogation.
10That is all one can safely say, looking at them, on the
11basis of a first blush look at the entire file.
12 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Let us start again, Mr Irving. If this is a flawed
13account, and an obviously flawed account ----
14 A. [Mr Irving]     In the opinion of your own expert witness.
15 Q. [Mr Rampton]     No. If you only have to compare it with the rest of the
16evidence. I know you have never done that, but it is, let
17me tell you, in certain respects unclear, confused and
18inaccurate. The guts of it, however, I put to you a
19moment ago, are dangerous to revisionists. If this
20account had been beaten or threatened out of this man by
21the brutal British interrogators, would you not think that
22they would have made it consistent with what else they
23knew?
24 A. [Mr Irving]     That is perhaps what they were doing.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Would you not think ----
26 A. [Mr Irving]     Perhaps that is why it is marginally consistent with other

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 1accounts known at this time. By this time, you have to
 2remember, they already knew quite a lot from other
 3interrogations.
 4 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Exactly. So they would have made Almeyer get it right.
 5They have not only got all the details right, they would
 6have got the numbers right, would they not, Mr Irving?
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     What you mean? Put in 2.8 million or some ----
 8 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Whatever. But 15,000? That is pathetic, is it not? That
 9is not a very good answer to a threat of torture or
10torture itself, is it?
11 A. [Mr Irving]     Maybe that was going to be in a later stage. Maybe there
12was going to be an interrogation 5 or 6 when he came to
13Nuremberg into the shadow of the gallows. This is a
14rather threadbare kind of argument. We do not know what
15stage they reached in their coercion.
16 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Mr Irving, you have made a suggestion in this letter to
17your chums in the revisionist movement to the effect that
18this man gave a fallacious account because he was tortured
19or threatened with torture by the Brits. You have
20absolutely no basis for that whatsoever.
21 A. [Mr Irving]     Mr Rampton, when the time comes to cross-examine your
22expert witnesses, I shall be putting to them documents
23which show very clearly what methods were used to extract
24information from witnesses, including some of the most
25brutal and horrifying descriptions of what happened to the
26witnesses in the Malmedy trial. I shall invite them to

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