Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 17: Electronic Edition

Pages 206 - 210 of 214

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 1 Q. [Mr Rampton]     "Vergasung". So he cannot shoot them, he cannot poison
 2them, then he says "verden aber", that means "but", does
 3it not?
 4 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes.
 5 Q. [Mr Rampton]     [German], what does that mean?
 6 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Well, "Verden aber" would be in the sense "but
 7nonetheless".
 8 Q. [Mr Rampton]     "Nonetheless"?
 9 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     And "eingriffa" would be, you know, "steps would be
10undertaken".
11 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Yes, [German] "We can do something"?
12 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes.
13 Q. [Mr Rampton]     And then it says: "Die [German - document not provided]"
14That means what?
15 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     That is "one way or another", "in some way".
16 Q. [Mr Rampton]     [German] and then the word "vernichtung erfolch". What
17does that mean?
18 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     "That would lead to a successful", literally in the way
19Germans combine words it means "a destruction success" and
20an English translation usually would be, we would invert
21those and say "a successful destruction".
22 Q. [Mr Rampton]     So "We will find a way to bring about a successful
23destruction"?
24 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Correct.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     "One way or another"?
26 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes, yes.

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 1 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Then I think you will be pleased, Professor, that that is
 2that, but I would like, if you can give me the answer --
 3what is this? Finally, I would like a little bit of
 4history from you. You were asked about the Wannsee
 5conference?
 6 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes.
 7 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Was the date in January, 20th January, I think it was,
 8'42, its original date?
 9 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     No, it was originally scheduled for December 8 or 9.
10 Q. [Mr Rampton]     And when was it cancelled, do you know, or postponed?
11 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Just right before that, basically at the time of the
12Russian counter offensive around Moscow on 5th and Pearl
13Harbour on the 7th. I forget the exact date. The notices
14of -- when the marginal note that Rademacher makes on the
15invitation, you know, that he hears it has been cancelled,
16I do not remember the exact date, but it comes just
17before.
18 Q. [Mr Rampton]     So does one know the reason why it was cancelled?
19 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     They do not stipulate -- they do not specify, but I think
20a probable inference is that at that point a crisis is
21going on and the people who are invited have too many
22other things to do.
23 MR IRVING:     It says "because of intervening events", I think,
24does it not?
25 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     It would suggest that the 5th and 7th were very important
26events that suddenly did not allow -- that Heydrich's

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 1schedule had to be changed.
 2 MR RAMPTON:     Right. Thank you very much, Professor. My Lord,
 3those are all the questions I have in re-examination.
 4 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Mr Irving, if you think there is anything
 5raised by the re-examination would you like to further
 6question the Professor about, feel free.
 7 < FURTHER CROSS-EXAMINED BY MR IRVING.
 8 MR IRVING:     My Lord, going in reverse order, the "We cannot
 9shoot them, we cannot poison them", what would the
10objections to shooting and poisoning have been that would
11not also have applied to gassing, if any?
12 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     The shooting of 3 million or 2 million in this case very
13possibly would have, simply it would have been much too
14public. I do not know why Frank would have said they were
15impossible. He is not the one that has been charged with
16trying to figure out how to do it. This is an
17extraordinary thing that is to about to take place, and
18the mind boggles that Frank could not conceive immediately
19of how this would be done strikes me as ----
20 Q. [Mr Irving]     He was not talking from a script, was he?
21 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     No.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]     Finally, on this document which has been put to which
23I have not seen mentioned before, which is the Event
24Report No. 80.
25 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes.
26 Q. [Mr Irving]     You will notice it has the top State Secret classification

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 1on it?
 2 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     This has Geheim, yes.
 3 Q. [Mr Irving]     Would I be right in saying that all SS documents are very
 4pernickety about the classification of security on them,
 5an that the Foreign Office and other bodies were less
 6pernickety about the security grade placed on them?
 7 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     I do not think I could say that. I notice here that this
 8is 48 copies. They may have wanted to stamp it so those
 9who were getting, given the number in circulation, that
10they would be very careful with it. That is speculation,
11but I do not know that SS had a tendency to use the Top
12Secret stamp more than the Foreign Office.
13 Q. [Mr Irving]     Is this document typed in the special Fuhrer typewriter?
14 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     No, it is not.
15 Q. [Mr Irving]     Have you ever seen any Event Reports typed in this special
16Fuhrer typewriter for submission to Hitler?
17 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Nothing, except the No. 51 we have talked about.
18 Q. [Mr Irving]     Is that called an Event Report?
19 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     No.
20 Q. [Mr Irving]     Or is it called Meldung Fuhrer?
21 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     That is a report to the Fuhrer.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]     Is there any indication on this document that it was shown
23to the Fuhrer or submitted to the Fuhrer, like vorgelegt?
24 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     No.
25 Q. [Mr Irving]     Thank you.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Why would just the one document have been

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 1typed out in the large type for the Fuhrer and marked
 2vorgelegt?
 3 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Why were these not typed out?
 4 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     Sorry, that was a rather badly phrased question. Does the
 5fact that there is only one such document extant indicate
 6that there only ever was one document?
 7 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Given the destruction of documents, particularly, say, in
 8Eichmann's office and in the SS, it leaves open the
 9question that there was a file of such things, and they
10were destroyed. We do not know.
11 MR IRVING:     My Lord, I answer that. There is in fact an
12extensive file of such reports to the Fuhrer, but they
13cover everything like the midget torpedo attack on
14Turpids. It is the whole gamut.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I am sure there are. I was talking only about
16reports from the Einsatzgruppen.
17 MR IRVING:     That is only one I have seen also.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I appreciate it is the only one anyone knows
19about. I was wondering whether that suggested that there
20only ever was one, but the Professor says not. No more
21questions?
22 MR IRVING:     No further questions.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Professor Browning, thank you very much. You
24are free to go.
25 < (The witness stood down).
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     We are going to resume at 10.30 on ----

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