Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 21: Electronic Edition

Pages 106 - 110 of 201

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 1 MR IRVING:     It is.
 2 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     So it is a question of finding it.
 3 MR RAMPTON:     He needs L2, my Lord.
 4 MR IRVING:     I am pretty certain that the tenor of the report
 5was that these outrages and crimes had been ----
 6 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      It is the final sentence in the report. Do you want me to
 7wait until you have it?
 8 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, I think you had better because the
 9suggestion is that when it says that they believed they
10were acting on a Hitler order, it is really implying that
11they knew they were not. Is that the suggestion?
12 MR IRVING:     Well, my suggestion is that the document casts
13doubt on whether there was actually such an order.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I see.
15 MR IRVING:     After a time when you have been studying these
16documents over the years, they become part of your
17microchip and I am quite familiar with the document
18and ----
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Well, let us fresh your microchip. I cannot
20find it actually.
21 MR IRVING:     [German - document not provided].
22 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Would you like to translate that?
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Whereabouts are you? I had better find it.
24 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Page 188, it is the tab 2.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     188?
26 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Or -- no, 10 in the pencilled circle mark. Page 10.

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 1Sorry. It is the typed 188. Yes, well, do you want me to
 2translate that? This is after a long catalogue of crimes
 3of theft, looting and rape and so on, and it says that,
 4"The individual perpetrators had put into action, not
 5merely the supposed will of the leadership, but the to be
 6sure vague, vaguely expressed but correctly recognized
 7will of the leadership". So the Party court is saying
 8that these people pleased they were acting after the
 9command of the leadership and they were right to believe
10so.
11 MR IRVING:     Without wishing to cast any judgment on the
12language used by lawyers, this is a very legalistic
13document and it is the sentence before the one that has
14been read out says, in effect, "These people, if this did
15not happen, then from the fact, as also from the remarks
16they made, we can draw the conclusion that the eventual
17result was desired or at least as considered to be a
18likelihood and desirable, and that this was taken into
19account, and from that fact, therefore, the people who had
20acted in that way had reason to believe that they might
21have been acting in accordance with the Fuhrer's will".
22It is a terribly legalistic kind of ----
23 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Mr Irving, this is a document that says that these people
24were right to recognize that the leadership willed these
25crimes, and the consequence of this, and we have already
26been through this and your cross-examination, if I may

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 1continue, was that those, the culprits were, that Hitler,
 2that Hitler's permission or command was sought to let all
 3of these people off any kind of prosecution in the regular
 4courts with the exception of two who had raped Jewish
 5women and, therefore, were considered to have committed a
 6race defilement.
 7 Q. [Mr Irving]      Yes, here comes the smoke screen again. It is the
 8sentence before that counts though, is it not, because the
 9sentence you have quoted begins with the words "in that
10case" or "then", "dann"?
11 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      I am sorry. I have lost you now or you have lost me.
12 Q. [Mr Irving]      And that refers to the previous sentence which is, in
13fact, the saying that they may have got it wrong, they may
14have got it right, but the fact remains they believed that
15they were acting in accordance with the Fuhrer's will,
16perceived or otherwise, and so on. It is terribly
17tangled, but the sentence beginning with "then" relies on
18the previous sentence, in that case or that being so?
19 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Yes, but it says "richtig erkannten Willenfuhrer" -- "the
20correctly recognized will of the leadership". That is a
21completely unambiguous sentence.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]      I am going to have to sit down and write a translation of
23that final paragraph for your Lordship, I think.
24 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      The court is saying that -- the court is saying that the
25will of the leadership was vaguely expressed, but
26correctly recognized by these people and, therefore,

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 1because they not only thought that they were acting on its
 2behalf but actually were and, therefore, the final
 3sentence is "dafur kann er nicht bestrafft werden" -- "he
 4cannot be punished for that".
 5 Q. [Mr Irving]      Will you please read the sentence before the sentence
 6beginning with the word "dann", then, in that case
 7because ----
 8 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      OK. Well, this goes back now.
 9 Q. [Mr Irving]      --- "dann" refers to "in that case" and obviously we need
10to know in what case, "dann". The sentence before. It is
11very complicated, but I rely on that one too, of course.
12 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Well, a couple of sentences before says that -- I am going
13further and further back into this document -- it is
14talking about the murders. It is really about the murders
15of the 91.
16 Q. [Mr Irving]      Forget the murders. Let us please get on to----
17 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      No, this is what the document is about. I am not going to
18forget them, Mr Irving. Let us remember here we are
19talking about murder and whether or not the murderers
20listed here should be handed over to the regular courts.
21It says that, "In the course of the night of 9th to 10th
22November, most of these killings could have been stopped,
23prevented, by an additional command". So what they are
24saying there, in other words, is that if the leadership,
25Hitler, had not wanted these people to be killed, he would
26have sent out a telegram saying so, but he did not. So,

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 1"Wenn dies nicht geschafft", that says "when" or, in
 2other words, "because this did not happen", i.e. there was
 3no telegram saying stop the killings, prevent the
 4killings ----
 5 Q. [Mr Irving]      "If this did not happen"?
 6 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Yes, "if this did not happen, so the" ----
 7 Q. [Mr Irving]      "The conclusion has to be drawn from this fact"?
 8 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      "The conclusion must be drawn from this fact".
 9 Q. [Mr Irving]      "And from the statement of such"?
10 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      "And from the statement that the eventual" ----
11 Q. [Mr Irving]      "Outcome"?
12 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      --- "success was wished or desired or at the very least
13was" -----
14 Q. [Mr Irving]      "Considered to be likely or" ----
15 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Yes.
16 Q. [Mr Irving]      --- "desirable"?
17 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      "was presented", really, "presented", I guess, "as at
18least as possible and desired or taken into consideration
19as being possible and desired". And then it goes on. It
20is a convoluted sentence, but the meaning is quite clear.
21It is saying because there was not any command from the
22Party leadership that Jews should not be killed, then it
23was OK that they were and, therefore, these peopled who
24killed them should not be punished.
25 Q. [Mr Irving]      Let me cut through the Gordian knot -----
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     

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