Irving v. Lipstadt

Transcripts

Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 29: Electronic Edition

Pages 36 - 40 of 186

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    Do liars not deserve to be exposed as such? If you saw
 1middle-class Canadians.
 2 Q. [Mr Rampton]     No doubt they too, Mr Irving, will spread the word, if
 3I may use that terminology?
 4 A. [Mr Irving]     Is that evidence or are you asking me a question?
 5 Q. [Mr Rampton]     I am asking you a question. That is what you are hoping,
 6is it not?
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     Spread the word that there are elements of the Holocaust
 8story that need to be treated with scepticism, yes.
 9 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Mr Irving, an I ask you this? Of these
10eyewitnesses, are you saying that they have come to
11believe what they say about their experiences and that is
12why they need psychiatric treatment? Or are you saying
13that they are collectively telling lies, deliberate
14falsehoods?
15 A. [Mr Irving]     Different people have different motives or different
16reasons. There are different reasons why they tell
17stories that are not true in this particular context. We
18saw the witness Professor van Pelt in the video and in his
19report talking of the almost mystical and religious awe in
20which he holds the site of Auschwitz. I can well
21understand that. It has become very central to their
22existence as the Jewish people. It has become an
23important part of their social awareness. It has become
24very close to religion in some aspects, in my view. It
25has become almost blasphemy to trample on any part of that
26ground. It has become holy ground, both in the physical

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 1concrete sense and in the metaphysical sense. As with any
 2religion, there are hangers on, people who believe they
 3were there, people who believe they touched the cloth, if
 4I can put it like that. There have been an increasing
 5number in recent years -- Benjamin Wilkormierski is one
 6example Ely Wiesel is another -- who have capitalized on,
 7or instrumentalized, the Holocaust. Now, I am not a
 8psychologist, I am not a psychiatrist, but I have looked
 9into some of the learned psychiatric texts that have been
10written about this phenomenon of the man who believes he
11is a survivor, the man who has been through a traumatic
12experience and either puts himself in the middle of an
13experience that he was on the periphery of, or who puts
14himself into an experience when he was not there at all.
15That is what the reference to the psychiatric problem is
16in this. It is put admittedly in the most tasteless
17possible way. Nobody can accuse me of not having been
18tasteless, and I probably deserve to be horse whipped for
19it, but the fact is that I am dealing here with a serious
20problem concerning the eyewitness accounts from Auschwitz.
21 MR RAMPTON:     And your audience absolutely love it, do they not,
22Mr Irving? It is music to their ears, is it not?
23 A. [Mr Irving]     They travel 200 miles sometimes to come and hear me speak,
24yes.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Good. Now I want to ask you about the National Alliance,
26if I may. For this purpose you will need Bundle A. It is

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 1the request for information and the answers that the
 2witness will need. Page 79 of the request first of all,
 3question 23, in the middle of the page under the main
 4heading, the National Alliance. We asked you the
 5questions, Mr Irving. I hope you have got it: "Do you
 6agree that the National Alliance is responsible for the
 7material contained in the appendix to Rebecca Goodman's
 8witness statement? Do you agree that it is the largest
 9and one of the most influential neo-Nazi organizations in
10the United States of America, being extremely right-wing,
11racist and anti-Semitic? Do you agree that it publishes
12and/or advertises through national vanguard publications
13which are extremely right-wing, racist and anti-Semitic"?
14Then we asked you: "Do you agree that you spoke at
15various National Alliance events"?
16     You will find your answers to questions 23 and
1725 in a document in tab 9, I think I am told, page 7. Can
18I ask you this? When you receive a document like this in
19the course of legal proceedings, and I know this is not
20the first time you have litigated, do you take the
21questions which are asked seriously? Do you take this to
22be a serious event in the course of the proceedings?
23 A. [Mr Irving]     Well, in view of what happened to Mr Aitken, I take it
24very seriously indeed, yes.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     So your response to the first question about your
26knowledge of the National Alliance is this: "I have no

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 1association of the body known to the Defendants as the
 2National Alliance as such or whatsoever. I cannot rule
 3out that members of that organization, which I take to be
 4a legal organization in the United States, have attended
 5functions at which I spoke. Accordingly I have no
 6knowledge of, and I take no interest in, what materials it
 7publishes or distributes. I have no knowledge whatsoever
 8of the character of the National Alliance, other than what
 9is now claimed by the witnesses for the Defendants, nor
10the publications which it is alleged to publish or
11advertised".
12     In relation to the next question, in answer to
13the next question, you gave this answer: "I do not agree
14that I have spoken at any National Alliance meetings. It
15might be that on occasions a gentleman who was a member of
16the National Alliance offered to organize a lecture for
17me. In other words, he undertook to find a suitable
18room. But I then circulated 'my' entire local mailing
19list to provide an audience. No doubt he brought his
20friends as well. It will be seen that in all these
21photographs of these events which are produced at trial,
22there is no kind of National Alliance 'presence'".
23     Those statements were false, were they not,
24Mr Irving?
25 A. [Mr Irving]     At the time I made them, they were absolutely correct,
26yes. They were not false. I have the photographs.

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 1I have not yet introduced the photographs I am referring
 2to, but I have them ready.
 3 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Mr Irving, we showed in this court, oh some time ago now,
 4video tape of you standing on a platform with a National
 5Alliance banner by your left shoulder, did we not? That
 6was film taken by the Australia film crew, was it not?
 7 A. [Mr Irving]     You showed a video tape of me in a room, on one wall of
 8which was a banner, which has been pointed out to me in
 9this courtroom as being a National Alliance banner. I do
10not suppose a single person in this courtroom would be
11able to tell you what a National Alliance banner looks
12like, and that is the position of most English people.
13 Q. [Mr Rampton]     Except, may I suggest, you, Mr Irving. Could the witness
14be given RWE 1, and be asked to turn to tab 2?
15 A. [Mr Irving]     Shall I get my own file?
16 Q. [Mr Rampton]     No. Somebody must do it for you. The first document in
17this section of the file, Mr Irving, is a letter dated 3rd
18February 1990. It has on its left-hand side a sort of
19symbol?
20 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
21 Q. [Mr Rampton]     On the right-hand side it says in large, emphatic black
22ink: "National Alliance, PO Box something or other, Palma,
23Ohio", does it not?
24 A. [Mr Irving]     Yes.
25 Q. [Mr Rampton]     "Hello David", it says, "I have arranged for you to speak
26on Wednesday, June 3rd, 7.30 p.m. at the Croatian Home in

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