Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 22: Electronic Edition

Pages 31 - 35 of 207

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    "Faced with this evidence, Irving offers a further
 1argument". Why do you say "faced with this evidence"?
 2 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Do you not mention this evidence?
 3 Q. [Mr Irving]     Did you find these documents that you referred to earlier
 4in that paragraph in my discovery or are they referenced
 5in my footnotes?
 6 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Let me just have a look. This is the Bruns and then there
 7is the ----
 8 Q. [Mr Irving]     The evidence for the figure of 10,600 shot on that day
 9which was a book published in 1989. You have no evidence
10that I was faced with that evidence, do you?
11 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     What you do, what you say is that they will have held 1 or
122,000 victims each. What you are aware of, you see, in
13the second -- let us leap to the second account here -- is
14that Einsatzgruppen A reported that a total of 27,800 Jews
15were executed in Riga, which seems to be a pretty accurate
16estimate and that is the evidence that you are faced with.
17 Q. [Mr Irving]     That is the second part of the question?
18 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     And are you saying that you ----
19 Q. [Mr Irving]     And you object to the fact that I say that this is
20possibly exaggerated?
21 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Well, there is this -- you say that is possibly
22exaggerated, yes, you try to cast doubt upon it, and then
23you mention the size of the ditches without mentioning
24their depth.
25 Q. [Mr Irving]     We will come back to the size of the ditches. You take
26exception to the fact that I say that 27,800 is possibly

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 1exaggerated. You are familiar with the historian
 2Ezergailis, the Baltic historian who is, I think we both
 3agree, an expert on this matter?
 4 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Yes, I cite him in footnote 75.
 5 Q. [Mr Irving]     And at the end of that paragraph 2 you say that he has
 6arrived at figures of certainly almost 25,000 Jews killed?
 7 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     That is right, yes.
 8 Q. [Mr Irving]     So 27,800 is about 12 per cent more than that, is it not?
 9 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     The estimates by the court in Hamburg is about 25 to
1030,000.
11 Q. [Mr Irving]     Is Ezergailis, Andrew Ezergailis, who, as you say, used
12various methods of calculating the victims arrived also at
13figures of certainly almost, in other words, less than,
1425,000 less killed?
15 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Mr Irving, when you saw possibly an exaggeration, you do
16not mean to suggest to the reader that it might have been
17a couple of thousand or 2,800 less.
18 Q. [Mr Irving]     12 per cent?
19 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     I think you are casting in your usual, a way that you
20frequently employ, you are trying to cast a general doubt
21on these figures. "Possibly an exaggeration" does not
22mean that it is within that range of possibilities.
23I think you are trying to suggest it could be a gross
24exaggeration.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Can we just, I am trying keep an eye on the
26wood rather than looking at the trees. The first

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 1criticism, if I remember what you said a few minutes ago,
 2was that if anyone just read the text in Goebbels, he
 3would get the impression that there were only 5,000
 4killed. Am I right so far?
 5 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Yes.
 6 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     And that is page 379 of the text?
 7 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Yes.
 8 Q. [Mr Justice Gray]     I cannot find a reference to 5,000. I can find a
 9reference to 4,000.
10 MR RAMPTON:     It is 1,000 plus 4?
11 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     1 plus 4. 1,000 from Berlin and 4,000 from Riga.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Are you saying -- Mr Irving will, no doubt,
13ask you a question if you are wrong about it -- that there
14is no reference in the text to any more Jews having been
15shot at Riga than the 5,000?
16 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     That is right.
17 MR IRVING:     But the reference is there in the end notes at the
18back to 27,800, is that right?
19 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Yes, where you frequently put embarrassing things in
20footnotes hoping, no doubt, that the common reader will
21not consult them.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]     Why would I put footnotes in a book if I hoped that the
23reader would not consult them? Would it not just be
24simpler not to put them in at all?
25 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Well, it is a matter of what strategy you are adopting to
26try to make your work plausible to those, that minority of

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 1readers who will consult the footnotes.
 2 Q. [Mr Irving]     Which of us has the minority of readers? Me with my best
 3selling books or you with the 10,000?
 4 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     That is not what I meant.
 5 Q. [Mr Irving]     The suggestion that I put footnotes in a book in the hope
 6that nobody will read them is rather implausible, is it
 7not?
 8 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     No. I think that the average reader does not consult the
 9footnotes. You are addressing yourself to two audiences,
10as I think you yourself said under cross-examination. You
11are addressing yourself to the general reader, but also to
12people who have a more specialized knowledge.
13 Q. [Mr Irving]     Will you accept that if you are writing a book which has a
14strong chronological flow and you are dealing with an
15episode that in happened in November, it would be
16disruptive to the reader to be told about things at the
17end of December and that it, therefore, makes sense to put
18in footnotes the overall result of this kind of murder
19operation?
20 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     It is not the end of December, Mr Irving. It is 8th
21December. That is a week later.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]     Yes, but would you accept that it is confusing for ----
23 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     That is not a huge chronological gap.
24 Q. [Mr Irving]     --- a reader to be ----
25 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     No, I will not accept it. I think you have a duty to give
26an accurate estimate of the numbers killed, and not to

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 1partly underestimate it and then hide the actual final
 2number in a footnote and cast doubt on it in a footnote.
 3 Q. [Mr Irving]     Are there better ways of hiding things than printing
 4things in books; you can hide them by just dropping on the
 5floor, like the Schlegelberger document?
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I think you have asked that question and I
 7think you have got the answer.
 8 MR IRVING:     I have, my Lord, and I will I move on now to the
 9pits.
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Yes, would you, because I have not quite got
11the picture on that.
12 MR IRVING:     Do you agree that General Bruns in his gripping and
13harrowing account of the mass shootings that occurred on
14November 30th 1941 -- you remember the girl with the flame
15red dress that he had in his mind's eye just before she
16was shot? Do you agree that he describes that there were
17two or three pits of a certain length and a certain
18width.
19 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Yes.
20 Q. [Mr Irving]     And can we not calculate from that in a rough -- can we
21not do a check sum to work out the feasibility of numbers
22of bodies that would fit into those pits?
23 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     No, you cannot, unless you know the depth.
24 Q. [Mr Irving]     How deep can a pit be dug, do you think?
25 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]     Oh, goodness! I mean, any depth. I would not want to
26make an estimate, I mean.

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