Holocaust Denial on Trial, Skeleton Argument of the Claimant (long): Electronic Edition, by Adrian Davies

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The orthodox historical consensus

115.Somewhere something has plainly gone seriously wrong in the treatment of Auschwitz by orthodox historians. Irving showed the Court the official German newsreel Welt im Film issued on 8 January 1948 at the height of post-war denazification. It records the Polish Communist Court's final judgment on Hoess, the camp commandant of Auschwitz and his staff at Krakow in December 1947.
116.The Polish Court, in whose district the camp is situated, which tried the case shortly after the events in question took place, and had no cause to love Germans in general or Nazis in particular, stated that "nearly 300,000" people of all nations had "died" at the camp. This figure, it should be noted, does not differentiate between deaths (1) from wholly natural causes, (2) accidents, (3) disease, (4) malnutrition, (5) Allied air raids (6) the consequences of mistreatment of inmates by the SS, and (7) deliberate killing of inmates by the SS.
117.As Gray J observes at 8.25 "that figure gradually increased to four million, which was the number mentioned until 1990 on the monument erected by the Communists in memory of the dead. The figure then came down again."
 
118.At 8.22 Gray J states: Research carried out more recently, notably by Raul Hilberg and by Dr. [Franciszek] Piper of the Auschwitz Museum, has concluded that the true figure for the number of deaths at Auschwitz is in the region of 1.1 million, of which the vast majority perished in the gas chambers. This figure has, according to the evidence of Van Pelt and Longerich, been endorsed by the majority of serious, professional historians concerned in this field."
119.Dr. Piper was responsible for the figure of four million on the Auschwitz memorial, now reduced by a factor of 75% even by him, so his reliability is not beyond question.
120.Longerich was clear under cross examination that the one million figure was from all causes, and he confirmed this even when challenged by Gray J. Under cross-examination on 28 February, 2000 (Day 26, pages 56 et seq.) Longerich stated that he believed that one million had died from all causes. He added that in his opinion, anybody who was transported to Auschwitz and "died there because of exhaustion, hunger and of other causes was murdered."
121.Asked by Irving: "You include in that figure [1 million] the numbers who died from typhus and the other epidemics?" the witness confirmed this.
122.Gray J then asked:--
"Mr. Irving's question was; are you actually including in your 1 million figure those who died as a result of forced labour?"
"Yes"
"And," pressed Irving, "the starvation, pestilence, plague, epidemics, all the other ancillary causes?"
"Yes"
123.Gray J only partially recognises the effect of these exchanges at 8.23. In that paragraph he appears to accept Longerich's manifestly absurd claim that the Nazis deliberately encouraged epidemics and plague in their camps as part of their genocide, as though epidemics are respecters of persons, calling a halt according to uniform and race.
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