Irving v. Lipstadt


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

Pages 76 - 80 of 214

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 1 MR RAMPTON:     I think it is in the main bundle now.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     If Greiser's letter is there too, then
 3I would quite like a reference to that at the same time.
 4 MR IRVING:     Do you have the actual document in front of you?
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Just a moment. Let us catch up..
 6 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     No, I do not.
 7 MR RAMPTON:     One starts at page 92 of the new Browning file
 8which is Greiser's letter.
 9 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You tell me about a new Browning file. I
10feel I am the last to know about it.
11 MR RAMPTON:     Tab 7, I am sorry.
12 MR IRVING:     My Lord, meanwhile I can tell you what I am aiming
13at here.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Let us pause a little, Mr Irving. You have
15to be patient with us.
16 MR RAMPTON:     Then the motor pool letter, the 97,000, is on the
17following page, I hope, 93 to 97.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I think I may have misunderstood. Are we in
19tab 7 of L1.
20 MR RAMPTON:     Tab 7 of L1.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Page 97.
22 MR RAMPTON:     Starting at page 92, that is Greiser to Himmler of
231st May in a printed form. We have not got a copy of the
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes. And the other one, Mr Rampton?
26 MR RAMPTON:     Then the very next page, 93, is the 97,000 letter

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 1of 5th June 1942.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Thank you.
 3 MR IRVING:     I am just going to wave one little flag about the
 4document's oddities. This is the document containing the
 597,000 figure, correct?
 6 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Correct.
 7 Q. [Mr Irving]     Do you see at the top it says "Einzigste Ausfertigung" in
 9 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes.
10 Q. [Mr Irving]     Have you ever seen that designation on a document anywhere
11else in your entire archival experience?
12 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     I do not recall seeing it.
13 Q. [Mr Irving]     Yes. "Einzigste Ausfertigung" which means the "onlyest"
15 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes, the motor pool sergeants were not terribly literate.
16 Q. [Mr Irving]     I take that point. Can you see that the document begins
17with the sentence: Beispielsweise, for example? The very
18first sentence in the document.
19 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     Yes, it says, "seit December", yes.
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I am sorry, I have not got that. Where are
22 MR IRVING:     In the very first sentence of the document, my
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     "Seit December".
25 MR IRVING:     The one with 97,000 figure in it.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Since December.

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 1 MR IRVING:     No. The word I am looking at is "Beispielsweise".
 2It is a letter beginning with the phrase, for example,
 3"Beispielsweise", it is just lifted out of the middle of
 4nowhere. Have you ever received a letter from somebody
 5beginning with the word "Beispielsweise",
 6Professor Browning?
 7 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     No.
 8 Q. [Mr Irving]     Or "for example"?
 9 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     But I think to have to realize Mr Schuss was not a college
10graduate, that these are people who are working in the
11motor pool in Berlin, and that the tone, as I see it, is
12someone who is trying to emulate what he thinks is proper
13bureaucratic German and he in fact is someone is not a
14bureaucrat, he is a mechanic.
15 Q. [Mr Irving]     He was not stupid because, as you say, he was the only one
16who was not punished in this entire horrible affair.
17 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     You have to remember that "Beispielweise" comes after the
18subject, which is they are talking about technical
20 Q. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
21 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     I presume that this is a result of a conversation people
22have had, there has been a meeting.
23 Q. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
24 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     And someone has said, write it up.
25 Q. [Mr Irving]     OK.
26 A. [Professor Christopher Robert Browning]     We get a very ----

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 1 Q. [Mr Irving]     Can you do a rough calculation of how many people were
 2being killed per van per day?
 3 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Just pause, Mr Irving. If I may say so, you
 4must just let me absorb the points you are making.
 5 MR IRVING:     I am just planting suspicion.
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You are casting doubt on this, partly because
 7it has "Einsigste Ausfertigung" on the top and
 8I understand that, but I am not sure I am really following
 9your point on "Beispielsweise".
10 MR IRVING:     It is an unusual turn of phrase to start a letter
11with, my Lord.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Why is it unusual? He is picking three
13trucks, is he not, to give an example of the sort of
14numbers that are being processed if that is the right
15word, in the special trucks.
16 MR IRVING:     I agree, my Lord, but you would normally expect
17that in the second paragraph of a letter. In the first
18paragraph he says, well, we are going to have troubles
19doing this, that and the other, troubles with the trucks,
20the exhaust hoses are getting corroded and all the rest of
21it, for example, but in fact his letter begins with the
22word "for example". This is the oddity about it. But I
23can do no more than ----
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You rely on that as an indication that this
25is not an authentic document?
26 MR IRVING:     I am trying to plant a seed of suspicion in your

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 1Lordship's mind, that is all.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You are not succeeding at the moment because
 3I would have thought, if you are trying to create a
 4document that is going to deceive anybody, you would not
 5do what you say is something obviously inappropriate,
 6which is to refer to an example in the first paragraph.
 7 MR IRVING:     It would be improper for me to do anything else.
 8Mr Rampton will object if I do anything else because
 9I have already stated that I fully accept that this
10document refers to the homicide of large numbers of human
11beings in gas vans.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Where are we going?
13 MR IRVING:     We are going to look at the number, my Lord, the
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     So you accept this is an authentic document?
16 MR IRVING:     For the purposes of this morning, yes.
17 MR RAMPTON:     I do have to know sooner or later, and so does
18your Lordship, whether Mr Irving accepts for the purposes
19of this trial that this is an authentic document. If it
20is a forgery, we need to know why he says it is a forgery.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You do not say it is a forgery?
22 MR IRVING:     No.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Then we can forget about Beispielsweise, can
24we not?
25 MR IRVING:     But it also helps to address the court's attention
26to the fact whether this witness had competently

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