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

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 1IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE
1996 I. No. 113
QUEEN'S BENCH DIVISION
 2Royal Courts of Justice
 3Strand, London
 4 Wednesday, 16th February 2000
 5
 6Before:
 7MR JUSTICE GRAY
 8
 9B E T W E E N: DAVID JOHN CAWDELL IRVING
10Claimant -and-
11(1) PENGUIN BOOKS LIMITED
12(2) DEBORAH E. LIPSTADT
13Defendants
14The Claimant appeared in person
15MR RICHARD RAMPTON Q.C. (instructed by Messrs Davenport Lyons and Mishcon de Reya) appeared on behalf of the First and
16Second Defendants
17MISS HEATHER ROGERS (instructed by Davenport Lyons) appeared on behalf of the First Defendant Penguin Books Limited
18MR ANTHONY JULIUS (of Mishcon de Reya) appeared on behalf of
19the Second Defendant Deborah Lipstadt
20
21(Transcribed from the stenographic notes of Harry Counsell
&Company, Clifford's Inn, Fetter Lane, London EC4
22Telephone: 020-7242-9346)
23(This transcript is not to be reproduced without the written permission of Harry Counsell &Company)
24
25 PROCEEDINGS - DAY TWENTY-ONE
26

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 1 <Day 21 Wednesday, 16th February 2000
 2 (10.30 a.m.)
 3< Professor Evans, recalled.
 4< Cross-Examined by Mr Irving, continued.
 5 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Mr Irving?
 6 MR IRVING:     May it please the court. My Lord, this morning
 7I shall deal with the Reichskristallnacht, the Night of
 8Broken Glass, and then, as a useful exercise, I will put
 9before the witness a bundle of documents, which is the
10chain of documents referred to. We will go through that
11and invite his opinion on that as an expert on the various
12documents.
13 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     Certainly.
14 MR IRVING:     My Lord, we left the operation yesterday, we left
15the battlefield, so to speak, I had advanced about 250
16pages into the minefield. There were a number of smoke
17screens which had been laid by the witness and others and
18by the documents, and I am now going to proceed through
19the smoke screen into Reichskristallnacht. But, first of
20all, I wanted to ask the witness briefly about page 210 of
21your expert report, which is a matter which will be
22covered by the documents later on, where you criticised
23the fact that ----
24 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      I am sorry, I have not brought this with me. I thought we
25were going to start with Kristallnacht. Can I have a
26copy?

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 1 Q. [Mr Irving]      I will just read it out, it is just one sentence.
 2 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      No, I will have a copy, please.
 3 Q. [Mr Irving]      Let me put it to you. You say that my position on Hitler
 4on all these issues is highly favourable to Hitler.
 5 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Yes.
 6 Q. [Mr Irving]      You criticise me for adopting positions on Adolf Hitler
 7and his decisions that are sometimes favourable.
 8 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Could you point me to where I do that, please?
 9 Q. [Mr Irving]      On page 210 you say: "Irving's position on all these
10issues" -- this is paragraph 4.1.10 -- "is highly
11favourable to Hitler".
12 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      I am commenting in this section on the allegation by
13Professor Lipstadt that you are, I think, "an admirer of
14Hitler". I cannot exactly remember the precise words.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY:     That is one of them, yes.
16 MR IRVING:     Which is why I am asking you to expand on this one
17sentence where you say that Irving adopts a position on
18all these issues, which we have been into before, which is
19highly favourable on Hitler, and I was asking you whether
20it is wrong for an historian at any time to say things
21that are favourable to Hitler.
22 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      If that goes against the evidence, yes.
23 Q. [Mr Irving]      Does it not put me in precisely the same position as an
24historian like AJP Taylor, who, as you pointed out, is not
25a Professor, not an academic, but a very well-known
26perhaps even notorious writer before his death, and who

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 1was also very well-known for adopting positions where he
 2came under criticism for having adopted positions which
 3were also favourable to Hitler on certain points?
 4 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Well, of course, AJP Taylor was an academic. He was a
 5Fellow and tutor in modern history at Magdalen College,
 6Oxford for many years. Indeed, he was a Professor towards
 7the end of his life in another university. He was heavily
 8criticized. There was a long debate about that. He was
 9not shown, to my knowledge, to have deliberately
10manipulated or falsified historical evidence in order to
11arrive at what was alleged to be. And what he denied to
12be. His position.
13 Q. [Mr Irving]      But he did adopt positions that were on occasions
14favourable to Hitler, did he not?
15 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      If you can cite them to me?
16 Q. [Mr Irving]      Here is a copy of AJP Taylor's very well-known book,
17'Origins of the Second World War'. Can you turn to page
187, for example? He says there, for example, does he not:
19"Historians often dislike what happened or wished it had
20happened differently. There is nothing they can do about
21it. They have to state the truth as they see it without
22worrying whether this shocks or confirms existing
23prejudices." Is that a fair statement of the position of
24an historian?
25 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Yes.
26 Q. [Mr Irving]      He should write what he finds, what happened and why?

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 1 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Yes.
 2 Q. [Mr Irving]      Even if he is going to be accused of saying things that
 3are favourable to Hitler or Stalin, or Churchill, or
 4Roosevelt, he just should write what he finds. The fact
 5that he writes something favourable to a great personality
 6of history is not ipso facto perverse?
 7 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      No. It depends how you arrive at that position, of
 8course.
 9 Q. [Mr Irving]      Then there is another position I am accused of in my
10books, is there not, that by my books or by my writings
11I give comfort to people on the extreme right. Is that
12one of the allegations against me?
13 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      You would have to point that out. I do not think
14I comment on that in this section.
15 Q. [Mr Irving]      On pages 8 to 9, does he also write: "I have no sympathy
16with those in this country who complain that my book had
17been welcomed, mistakenly or not, by former supporters of
18Hitler. This seems to me a disgraceful argument to be
19used against a work of history. The historian must not
20hesitate, even if his books lend aid or comfort to the
21Queen's enemies or even the common enemies of mankind".
22 A. [Professor Richard John Evans]      Well, you did leave out a little about there. Let me read
23that last sentence again: "An historian must not
24hesitate, even if his books lend aid and comfort to the
25Queen's enemies though mine did not, or even to the common
26enemies of mankind". You did not indicate there to the

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