Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 20: Electronic Edition

Pages 96 - 100 of 215

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    If you are familiar with the methods that they have used
 1to try to destroy a professional historian's career and
 2family, would that professional historian be entitled to
 3use pretty colourful language to describe these people who
 4are secretly trying to destroy him?
 5 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     That is a very hypothetical question. I think what you
 6are saying there is that the Board of Deputies of British
 7Jews have been engaged in a secret campaign to try and
 8destroy your livelihood.
 9 Q. [Mr Irving]     That is what I said. If the intention is to destroy an
10author and his family and his career and livelihood by
11underhand methods or by whatever methods, is he not
12entitled to defend himself and use occasional lurid
13language?
14 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     I would have to first of all see evidence to persuade me
15that such a secret dastardly campaign had been carried
16out. I do not want to answer a hypothetical question of
17that nature. I do think that professional historians
18should be reasonably measured in their language. I do not
19think that is an appropriate word to use.
20 Q. [Mr Irving]     If the court is shown a document showing that at this
21precise time that body was contemplating putting pressure
22on that author's publisher to stop publishing his books
23and thereby destroy his career and livelihood, and they
24were doing it behind armour plated doors in their
25headquarters ----
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Show the witness the document and then we can

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 1see.
 2 MR IRVING:     May I do so, my Lord?
 3 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, of course.
 4 MR IRVING:     Would you go to bundle E?
 5 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     I am not sure I have this.
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Bundle E. No, you may well not have.
 7 MR IRVING:     I am looking for the document. Page 82 in the
 8bundle called Global.
 9 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     This is a meeting on 12th December 1991, Education and
10Academic Committee?
11 Q. [Mr Irving]     The Education and Academic Committee of the Holocaust
12Educational Trust. Can you read item No. 6 please?
13 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     "David Irving. Concern was voiced over the publication of
14the second edition of Hitler's War. There was debate over
15how to approach Macmillan publishers over Goebbels Diary.
16It was agreed await news from Jeremy Coleman before
17deciding what course of action to take".
18 Q. [Mr Irving]     I am not going to go into the remaining documents in that
19bundle, Professor Evans, but, if I put it to you that this
20is evidence and that other documents will be submitted to
21court later on, the pressure that was put on my publishers
22by this body, which is part of the Board of Deputies,
23which was meeting at their headquarters, am I not entitled
24to use that kind of language to describe these people?
25 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Well, to be quite honest, no. This is a meeting of five
26people, Mr Coleman, Professor Gould, Professor Polonski,

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 1Mr Nyman and Dr John Fox. It is not a meeting of the
 2Board of Deputies of British Jews. Where it takes place
 3I think is pretty immaterial. It says that there is a
 4debate, but they agreed that they are not going to do
 5anything. So I do not think that is justification for
 6calling the Board of Deputies of British Jews cockroaches.
 7 MR RAMPTON:     What is more, there is another thing needs to be
 8pointed out. That document, which is the first time I
 9have seen, is dated 12th December 1991. It is predated
10therefore by some months by what Mr Irving said, which
11apparently was said on 5th October 1991.
12 MR IRVING:     Are you ----
13 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     It post dates it?
14 MR RAMPTON:     Yes. The document post dates the Irving statement
15about cockroaches.
16 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     You said predates.
17 MR RAMPTON:     I am sorry.
18 MR IRVING:     I do not want to hold up the court at this point,
19but will you accept that that bundle you are holding
20called Global is about three inches thick, and contains
21many hundreds of documents?
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is not a terribly illuminating question.
23 MR IRVING:     My Lord I do not really want to read through all
24the other documents.
25 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     It is not a very contentious statement.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     No, I am not asking you to. Anyway, I think

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 1we will move on. You have put that document.
 2 MR IRVING:     Precisely. Witness, will you accept that, on the
 3balance of probabilities, there are other documents of
 4that nature in that bundle?
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     If I may say so, Mr Irving, we must do better
 6than that.
 7 MR IRVING:     Mr Rampton has suggested that this was it, and so
 8what.
 9 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     What it comes to is, if there was in
10existence a document prior to what you said about the
11British Board of Deputies being cockroaches, which you say
12justifies you having said that, then put it to the
13witness. If you have not got such a document, move on,
14please.
15 MR IRVING:     I shall put it to the court in due course, my Lord,
16the whole bundle, as your Lordship is familiar. If an
17author is aware that such a campaign is being conducted
18against him by a body of whatever class or colour or race
19or religion, is he entitled to use lurid language in
20private?
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You have asked that question many times
22before and that is a comment. You have not established
23the factual premise for it, so can you move to the next
24topic, which means going beyond page 168.
25 MR IRVING:     My Lord, you say I have not established a factual
26premise. To do that I would have to go back to the bundle

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 1and I do not want to do that at this point.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     In that case you cannot ask the question.
 3 MR IRVING:     The final five lines of that same paragraph: "In
 4April 1998 Mr Irving spoke of American Jews 'moving into
 5the same positions of predominance and influence'", and so
 6on, that they held in the Weimar Republic. This is a
 7quotation, is it not, from my diary in April 1998?
 8 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     From your website. Published on your website.
 9 Q. [Mr Irving]     It is a quotation from my diary in 1998?
10 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Published on your website. In other words, it is free to
11anybody to access, which is what we did.
12 Q. [Mr Irving]     Have you had access to all my private diaries?
13 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     I did not need access to your private diaries to get hold
14of this quotation.
15 Q. [Mr Irving]     Will you answer the question?
16 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     May I read the whole quotation first to establish what we
17are talking about?
18 Q. [Mr Irving]     Just answer that question. Have you had access to my
19diaries?
20 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     I am sorry, I want to read the whole quotation to get
21clear what we are going to see, then I will answer your
22question.
23 Q. [Mr Irving]     Will you answer the question first?
24 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     In April 1998 he spoke of American Jews'moving into the
25same positions of predominance and influence..."
26 Q. [Mr Irving]     

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