Irving v. Lipstadt


Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 24: Electronic Edition

Pages 101 - 105 of 192

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 1 Q. [Mr Irving]     You are damned if you do and damned if you do not,
 3 A. [Dr Heinz Peter Longerich]     It is a typical stereotype. I do not think one can draw
 4major conclusions from the fact that somebody protected a
 5Jew or had Jewish friends.
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Just pause a moment, Dr Longerich.
 7 MR RAMPTON:     Can I say something? I am not criticising
 8Mr Irving in the very least for having gone through that
 9glossary, and he did it really rather quickly, but I am a
10bit concerned now because Mr Irving conceded one question
11and answer to the effect, I think, that Hitler was from
121919 onwards a profound anti-Semite and that anti-Semitism
13was one of the important planks of Nazi ideology.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     So, in the early years you say that this is
15really not an issue?
16 MR RAMPTON:     I have made it specific. From 1919 onwards and
17that anti-Semitism became an important plank of Nazi
18ideology or policy call it what you like.
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Adding the rider that, as far as Hitler
20personally was concerned, he had other things on his mind
21from about the invasion of Russia.
22 MR RAMPTON:     He may have had other things on his mind. Being
23an anti-Semite is not exclusive of other things.
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     No, but I think Mr Irving's case, and he will
25correct me if I am wrong, is that anti-Semitism was not
26really something that was concerning Hitler from -- am

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 1I right about this -- about 1941 onwards, because he was
 2fairly preoccupied.
 3 MR RAMPTON:     No. He said from the time he came to power. From
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     You tell me, Mr Irving. Have I misunderstood
 6your case?
 7 MR RAMPTON:     I have misunderstood Mr Irving's concession, if
 8that be right.
 9 MR IRVING:     My Lord, my general impression is that Adolf Hitler
10abandoned that particular plank once he came to power. It
11had been very useful for getting him into power but, once
12he was an absolute dictator, he did not need it any more
13and it bulked less large.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     The point Mr Rampton makes is do we need to
15spend very long exploring anti-Semitism in the 30s, given
16that you accept that he was a radical anti-Semite over the
17entirety of that period?
18 MR IRVING:     The question is whether he was a cynical
19anti-Semite and used it in the same way that an Enoch
20Powell might use immigration as a means of establishing a
21political position, or whether he was profoundly
22viscerally anti-Semitic.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Which option are you going for?
24 MR IRVING:     I am going for the cynical version, my Lord.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     So he was not really an anti-Semite, it was
26just a political gambit?

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 1 MR IRVING:     He was when it served his purpose. He was a beer
 2table anti-Semite. He used it to whip up support, but in
 3private, and this is what counts, his state of mind was
 4slightly different, which is what I was trying to elicit
 5from just one or two episodes of his own----
 6 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I find that slightly difficult difficult to
 7reconcile with your acceptance earlier on in this trial
 8that he was without qualification a rabid anti-Semite, at
 9any rate in the 30s.
10 MR IRVING:     I would then say it is perfectly possible for him
11to have been like that originally and then drifted out
12when he no longer needed it, just as with Goebbels it was
13the other way round. Goebbels was originally viciously
14anti-anti-Semitic and wrote his letter to his girl
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Do not let us worry about Goebbels. Can you
17put this point that you are now making in a general way to
18Dr Longerich?
19 MR IRVING:     Two more questions and then we will have it, I
20think. Adolf Hitler's dietary cook was also Jewish,
21Marlene Exener.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is not putting it in a general way.
23 MR IRVING:     I was going to say -- well, is the answer do you
24know that or not?
25 A. [Dr Heinz Peter Longerich]     No.
26 Q. [Mr Irving]     If somebody maintained people like that on his private

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 1staff, is it an indication that personally he had no
 2real -- what is the word I am looking for -- distaste
 3for Jews as individuals?
 4 A. [Dr Heinz Peter Longerich]     I think I made my point. I think, if you look into the
 5history of anti-Semitism, you cannot draw conclusions from
 6these personal relationships, because the anti-Semite
 7would always argue, well, this is an exception, this is
 8not a typical Jew, this person is different. I remember
 9vaguely these rumours that one or the other person was
10Jewish, or what they called half Jewish, but I do not
11think one can actually write a kind of history of Hitler's
12anti-Jewish policy on this basis. This might be the case,
13but it does not -- it is a well-known stereotype in the
14history of anti-Semitism, as I said.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Can I interrupt you rudely and just ask you
16the question which was the one I had in mind? Do you
17accept what Mr Irving is contending, that Hitler's
18anti-Semitism in the 1930s was not an expression of a
19genuine anti-Jewish feeling, but was simply a political
20gambit to enable him to achieve power?
21 A. [Dr Heinz Peter Longerich]     No, I do not think so. I do not agree.
22 Q. [Mr Irving]     Pursue it, if you want to, Mr Irving, but that was the
23general question I had in mind.
24 MR IRVING:     I would ask again the general question. If he was
25viscerally anti-Jewish and anti-Semitic, would he have
26tolerated Jewish members of his personal staff? Would he

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 1have tolerated Field Marshal Milsch, who was a well-known
 2half Jew?
 3 A. [Dr Heinz Peter Longerich]     I think I made my point clear. As far as I see
 4anti-Semitism -- my English runs out a little bit --
 5there is no contrast, no juxtaposition. I think this does
 6not actually disturb my view. It does not surprise me.
 7 Q. [Mr Irving]     OK. Just one final question to round off this context.
 8In that little league table I was beginning to draw up of
 9Himmler, Goebbels, Goring, Bormann, Lammers, Hitler, where
10would Hitler come on the anti-Semitism scale? Would he be
11above or below Dr Goebbels? Would he be more or less
13 A. [Dr Heinz Peter Longerich]     I would just say that Hitler was a radical anti-Semite
14like Goebbels. The degree of percentage, I cannot make a
15judgment about that. I do not know how one measures
16radical anti-Semitism.
17 Q. [Mr Irving]     Which way did the anti-Semitic current flow? From
18Goebbels to Hitler, or Goebbels to Hitler?
19 A. [Dr Heinz Peter Longerich]     If you look at this group of people, I think I would
20describe it as a consensus. It was a general radical
21anti-Semitic consensus among them and it is impossible to
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     I think we understand the difficulty you are
24in and I think, Mr Irving, you must move on.
25 MR IRVING:     If you had read the Goebbels diaries right through,
26would you be able to form an impression on who was making

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