Holocaust Denial on Trial, Trial Transcripts, Day 32: Electronic Edition
Pages 1 - 222 of 222
1IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE
1996 I. No. 113
QUEEN'S BENCH DIVISION
2Royal Courts of Justice
4 Wednesday, 15th March 2000
7MR JUSTICE GRAY
9B E T W E E N: DAVID JOHN CAWDELL IRVING
11(1) PENGUIN BOOKS LIMITED
12(2) DEBORAH E. LIPSTADT
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
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
21(Transcribed from the stenographic notes of Harry Counsell
&Company, Clifford's Inn, Fetter Lane, London EC4
23(This transcript is not to be reproduced without the written permission of Harry
25 PROCEEDINGS - DAY THIRTY-TWO
1 <(Day 32)
4 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, before you say what you want to
5say and before Mr Rampton starts, can I just say this.
6I certainly do not intend to have a sort of inquest about
7why yesterday was abortive. I was a bit surprised, as you
8may have gathered. I have looked at the transcript of day
930 and I can see how the misunderstanding arose. I think
10it was then contemplated we would have two days of closing
11submissions and it has not worked out like that. The
12reason I mention it is simply this. Having looked again
13at both sets of written closing submissions -- for which
14I am very grateful, a lot of work has gone into them
15obviously -- there are one or two points that I think
16I ought to put really to both sides. I will do that
17whenever it is convenient to you both. I will either do
18it before or during or after, whichever you find
19convenient -- probably after, I suspect.
20 MR RAMPTON: After, I would suggest.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: After your public statement, but I do not
22want to do it. That is what I am really telling you.
23 MR RAMPTON: I would also suggest, perhaps, because they are
24not things in which the majority of people in this room
25are going to be closely interested, we could also deal
26with these five points after.
1 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Which five?
2 MR RAMPTON: Mr Irving's five points.
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: The Muller document standard of proof,
4section 5 etc.
5 MR RAMPTON: They are partly matters of law and partly matters
7 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Subject to Mr Irving, I entirely agree about
8that. Mr Irving, these are the nitty-gritty, are they
10 MR IRVING: I did not want to be wrong-footed by leaving them
11out. I want to draw your Lordship's attention to the fact
12that there are these final loose ends that need to be tied
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I certainly agree. We ought to spend a few
15minutes on the Muller document.
16 MR IRVING: Except for the one point, my Lord, point 4 on that
17list. Having reconsidered the matter, I do consider I am
18entitled to make slightly broader use of the material
19which was in the bundle E matters on the basis that I have
20set out there, that they might go to aggravated damages
21and they certainly go to explaining my state of mind when
22I am alleged to have made certain remarks about the bodies
23or persons concerned.
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY: What I will do -- I know the Defendants are
25not very happy about this but I think I am going to do it
26anyway unless Mr Rampton wants to try and dissuade me --
1is to let you make your closing submissions along the
2lines of the written document. I am bound to say that
3I think a lot of it goes beyond what the evidence
4establishes, and also goes beyond what you are really
5entitled in any event to rely on by way of aggravated
6damages against the Defendants because, of course, you
7have to prove the Defendants' involvement in the
8conspiracy. But I am going to let you do it, unless
9Mr Rampton continue tries to dissuade me.
10 MR RAMPTON: No, I have no objection.
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think it is the right thing to do in this
13 MR RAMPTON: I agree. Miss Rogers has dealt with it very
14succinctly and, in my submission, very effectively on
15paper. It is in your Lordship's hands at the end of all
16this. If this were a Jury case, it would be entirely
17different, but it is not. We are confident that we can
18leave it happily to your Lordship. I would also add
19this. It does seem to me, and I will say this, that the
20more of that kind of speculative fantasy Mr Irving spins
21in a public court in this country, the more harm he does
22his own cause. I only say that at this stage.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is as may be.
24 MR IRVING: Be that as may be, my Lord, of course, I would be
25perfectly entitled in my closing speech to put to the
26court the matters that I would have put to the Defendants
1had they had the courage to go into the witness box. That
2is the kind of material that I would have put to them.
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Well, I am not sure that is actually right,
4as a matter of law, but I am taking a liberal approach.
5Say what you have indicated you intend to say in due
7 MR IRVING: I will certainly tighten it up. I shall not go to
9 MR RAMPTON: My Lord, I will then read, if I may, what your
10Lordship has in writing. I start by observing that your
11Lordship will notice, as I read it, that there are one or
12two stylistic changes that I have made overnight. They
13are merely stylistic. They do not touch the substance of
14what I have to say.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I will keep my mouth shut and I will not
16interrupt you, but there are the points that I want to
17raise with you at the end of your statement.
18 MR RAMPTON: If your Lordship would rather do it now?
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY: No, it is better at the end.
20 MR RAMPTON: My Lord, I start with this, that if one had read
21some of the media reports of this trial, which I realize
22that your Lordship probably has not, one might have
23supposed that Mr Irving had been dragged into this court
24to defend his freedom of expression as an historian.
25 In fact, of course, that is not so. The history
26of the matter is quite the reverse. Professor Deborah
1Lipstadt, an America academic, wrote a book called
2"Denying the Holocaust", which was first published in the
3United States in 1993. It was then republished by Penguin
4Books in this country in 1994. The book contained
5trenchant criticisms of Mr Irving's historiographical
6methods and his political views and associations.
7Mr Irving then issued legal proceedings claiming
8aggravated damages for libel and an injunction against
9Professor Lipstadt and Penguin. This trial has taken
10place only because they decided to defend their right to
11publish the truth.
12 The principal accusations made against Mr Irving
13by Professor Lipstadt in her book were, in summary:
14first, that Mr Irving deliberately falsified history in
15order to make it conform with his ideological leanings and
16political agenda, and, in particular, in order to
17exonerate Adolf Hitler of responsibility for the Nazi
18persecution of the Jews.
19 Second, that in order to achieve his objective,
20Mr Irving distorted historical evidence and manipulated
22 Third, that Mr Irving had become one of the most
23dangerous spokespersons for Holocaust denial.
24 Last, that he himself held extremist views and
25allied himself, with other right-wing extremists, in
26particular Holocaust deniers and anti-Semites.
1 My Lord, those were undoubtedly serious charges
2and, had they been untrue, Mr Irving would clearly have
3been entitled to a large sum of money and an order of the
4court preventing the Defendants from repeating their
5accusations. But, as it turns out on the evidence before
6this court, the accusations are true, in every significant
8 Mr Irving had in the past claimed that there was
9a chain or series of documents which showed that Hitler
10was innocent of the persecution of the Jews, and in
11particular their mass-murder during the War; indeed, that
12he was, in fact, "the best friend the Jews ever had in the
14 " The Defendants decided to put that claim to
15the test. They asked a professional historian, Professor
16Richard Evans of Cambridge University, to investigate it.
17 His findings were astonishing. Upon
18examination, virtually every single one of the links in
19Mr Irving's chain crumbled in his hands, revealing a
20falsification of history on massive scale. Equally
21revealing was the discovery that each of Mr Irving's
22falsifications led to the same end: the exculpation of
24 In addition, in order to test Mr Irving's
25historiography by reference to his work on a topic other
26than Hitler -- in a sense, a control sample -- Professor
1Evans examined a number of successive editions of one of
2Mr Irving's most successful works, his book on the Allied
3bombing of Dresden in February 1945. Here again Professor
4Evans found deliberate falsification on a grand scale, all
5of it tending to the same result: a gross inflation of
6the numbers of German civilians killed in those raids.
7 The long written submission of the Defendants
8which is before your Lordship contains a detailed account
9of Professor Evans' findings and the evidence which
10supports them. By the Defendants' estimate, there are, in
11relation to Hitler alone, as many as 25 major
12falsifications of history, as well as numerous subsidiary
13inventions, suppressions, manipulations and
14mistranslations employed to support the major
15falsifications. If those relating to Auschwitz, Dresden
16and other matters are added in, the number goes well over
18 My Lord, in order to illustrate the
19extraordinary nature and extent of these falsifications,
20I will give but two examples.
21 On the evening of 9th November 1938, and through
22the night until the following morning, there was an orgy
23of violence and destruction against Jews and Jewish
24property throughout Germany. This was
26 It had been prompted by the assassination in
1Paris of a German diplomat by a young Polish Jew. The
2Nazi leadership in Berlin exploited it to the full. It
3was orchestrated by the SA and the SS, and the police were
4ordered, by Hitler, not to intervene.
5 Mr Irving has described this pogrom in various
6places, but most particularly in his book "Goebbels:
7Mastermind of Third Reich", which was published in 1996,
8where he devotes a whole chapter to it. In summary, his
9account of it is that the whole thing was initiated and
10orchestrated by Goebbels, without Hitler's knowledge or
11participation; and that when, in the early hours of 10th
12November 1938, Hitler found out what Goebbels had done, he
13was "livid with rage" and took immediate steps to put a
14stop to it. This account purports to be based partly on
15the postwar testimony of former Nazis, but principally on
16the contemporary documents. On examination of those
17documents, Mr Irving's account turns out to be
18completely bogus. His use of two of those documents will
19suffice to illustrate the point.
20 On page 276 of his Goebbels book, Mr Irving
22 "What of Himmler and Hitler? Both were totally
23unaware of what Goebbels had done until the synagogue next
24to Munich's Four Seasons Hotel was set on fire around 1
25am. Heydrich, Himmler's national chief of police, was
26relaxing down in the hotel bar; he hurried up to Himmler's
1room, then telexed instructions to all police authorities
2to restore law and order,; protect Jews, and Jewish
3property, and halt any ongoing incidents. I emphasise the
4last part of that sentence, to restore law and order,
5protect Jews, and Jewish property, and halt any ongoing
7 The reference given by Mr Irving in his book as
8his source for this is a telex sent by Heydrich at 1.20 am
9on 10th November 1938. In fact, so far from ordering "all
10police authorities to restore law and order, protect Jews
11and Jewish property, and halt any ongoing incidents", it
12read as follows:
13 "(a) Only such measures may be taken as do not
14involve any endangering of German life or property (e.g.
15synagogue fires only if there is no danger of the fire
16spreading to the surrounding buildings).
17 (b) The shops and dwellings of Jews may only be
18destroyed, not looted. The police are instructed to
19supervise the implementation of this order and to arrest
21 (c) Care is to be taken that non-Jewish shops in
22shopping streets are unconditionally secured against
24 (d) Foreign nationals may not be assaulted even
25if they are Jews."
26 That was what Heydrich stayed at 1.20 a.m. on
110th November 1938.
2 Then, on page 277 of his book, after a colourful
3account of Hitler's supposedly furious intervention,
4Mr Irving writes this: "At 2.56 am Rudolf Hess's staff
5also began cabling, telephoning, and radioing instructions
6to gauleiters and police authorities around the nation to
7halt the madness", and I emphasise those words.
8 The source given by Mr Irving for this is a
9report made by the Nazi Party Court about the pogrom in
10February 1939. It records this order from Hess's office,
11made on Hitler's authority. This shows that, in truth,
12all that the order forbade was the continuing of arson
13attacks on Jewish shops. Synagogues, houses, apartments,
14cemeteries, and, in particular, Jewish people were left to
15the mercy of the continuing violence.
16 As your Lordship knows, there was an aftermath
17of Reichskristallnacht. Mr Irving describes one aspect on
18page 281 of Goebbels in these terms:
19 "Hess ... ordered the Gestapo and the party
20courts to delve into the origins of the night of violence
21and turn the culprits over to the public prosecutors".
22 Thus Mr Irving gives the impression that those
23who had perpetrated the violence were to be brought to
24justice and properly punished.
25 Nothing could be further from the truth. As the
26contemporary documents, and in particular the Party Court
1report of February 1939, which Mr Irving himself used as a
2principal source for his account of Reichskristallnacht,
4 First, the Ministry of Justice ruled, on 10th
5November 1938, that those who had "merely" caused damage
6to Jewish shops, synagogues and the like should not be
7prosecuted at all.
8 Second, other more serious offences, such as
9looting, rape, assault, murder and the destruction of
10Jewish homes for selfish motives were to be referred to
11the Party Court, which would first decide whether any of
12the offenders should be referred to the ordinary criminal
13courts or acquitted by order of the Fuhrer.
14 Third, in the event, as was no doubt intended,
15the proceedings of the Party Court were a farce. Of 16
16cases dealt with in the report of February 1939, 14 were
17disposed of with little more than a rap on the knuckles
18for the culprits, including 13 cases of murder involving
19the deaths of 21 Jews. The two cases which were referred
20to the criminal courts were sexual offences against Jewish
21women - not because of their gravity, however, but because
22the offenders had been guilty of "racial defilement"
24 Finally, the reason the Party Court gave for its
25leniency in the other 14 cases was that the criminals were
26in fact "only carrying out the unclearly expressed but
1properly recognized will of the leadership" - that is,
3 Mr Irving knows all of this, but suppresses it
4entirely in his book.
5 The second striking example, amongst many, of
6Mr Irving's shocking falsification of history relates to
8 By the beginning of 1943, many of Europe's Jews
9had already been murdered. Hungarian Jews, however, of
10whom there were perhaps 600 to 700,000, had, so far,
11escaped the destruction. The reason was that the ruler of
12Hungary, Admiral Horthy, although Hitler's ally, had
13steadfastly refused to deliver up Hungary's Jews. There
14was much agitation about this in Berlin. Eventually, on
1516th and 17th April 1943, Hitler and his Foreign Minister,
16Ribbentrop, summoned Admiral Horthy to Klessheim, near
17Salzburg, in order to put pressure on him to surrender the
18Hungarian Jews into Nazi hands. The notes of the meetings
19were taken by a man called Paul Schmidt and are agreed by
20Mr Irving, who used them for his own accounts of these
21meetings, to be very reliable.
22 According to Schmidt's notes at the first
23meeting on 16th April, Horthy protested at the Nazi
24leader's demands. "But they" (the Jews) "can hardly be
25murdered or otherwise eliminated", he said. Hitler's
26response was palliative: "There is no need for that", he
1said, and added that they could be sent to remote work
2camps or down the mines."
3 The next day, 17th April 1943, Hitler's and
4Ribbentrop's demands became a good deal cruder. Horthy
5again protested that he "surely couldn't beat the Jews to
6death". Ribbentrop replied that they "must either be
7annihilated or taken to concentration camps. There is no
8other way". Hitler then followed up with this:
9 "Where the Jews are were left to themselves, as
10for example in Poland, gruesome poverty and degeneracy had
11ruled. There were just pure parasites. One had
12fundamentally cleared up this state of affairs in Poland.
13If the Jews there didn't want to work, they were shot. If
14they couldn't work, they had to perish. They had to be
15treated like tuberculosis bacilli, from which a healthy
16body could be infected. That was not cruel", said Hitler,
17"if one remembered that even innocent natural creatures
18like hares and deer had to be killed so that no harm was
19caused. Why should one spare the beasts who wanted to
20bring us Bolshevism once more? Nations who did not rid
21themselves of Jews perished".
22 Mr Irving's account of this exchange in his 1977
23edition of "Hitler's War" (at page 509) is extraordinary.
24First, as an invented pretext for Hitler's remarks, he
25introduces the Warsaw Ghetto uprising, which did not in
26fact begin until two days later. Then, immediately
1following Hitler's brutal assertion of the need to kill
2the Jewish "beasts", Mr Irving adds this:
3 "Horthy apologetically noted that he had done
4all he decently could against the Jews: 'But they can
5hardly be murdered or otherwise eliminated', he
6protested. Hitler reassured him: 'There is no need for
7that'. But just as in Slovakia, they ought to be isolated
8in remote camps where they could no longer affect the
9healthy body of the public; or they could be put to work
10in the mines, for example. He himself did not mind being
11temporarily excoriated for his Jewish policies, if they
12brought him tranquillity. Horthy left unconvinced."
13 As, my Lord, will immediately be apparent, this
14was a quite brazen piece of manipulation: as Mr Irving
15knew perfectly well, because he was familiar with
16Schmidt's notes, this exchange had, in fact, occurred on
17the previous day (16th April), not 17th. It is apparent,
18therefore, that Mr Irving quite deliberately transferred
19it to 17th April in order to mitigate the chilling impact
20of Hitler's stark observation about the need to kill the
22 The account given in the 1991 edition of
23"Hitler's War" (at pages 541 to 542) is no better. True,
24the spurious reference to the Warsaw uprising has been
25removed. But so, too, has Hitler's repellant analogy
26between the need to kill animals which cause damage and
1the need to kill the Jewish "beasts". And the brazen
2transfer that Hitler's palliative remark on 16th April to
3this meeting on 17th is perpetuated.
4 My Lord, these two examples are but the tip of a
5large iceberg imposed of numbers of other equally
6egregious falsifications by Mr Irving in his written work
7and in his public utterances.
8 I conclude here, my Lord, with this, that the
9Defendants say, on this part of the case: "Case proved:
10Mr Irving is, as was proposed at the outset of this trial,
12 My Lord, it might be thought that that would be
13enough to dispose of Mr Irving's claim, given the emphasis
14he places on the damage to his reputation as an historian
15which he says was caused by Professor Lipstadt's book.
16But the evidence in the case has covered a lot of other
17topics as well, and I shall, therefore, briefly mention
19 Until 1988, Mr Irving had accepted the
20historical reality of Holocaust, but denied that Hitler
21authorized it or, until late on in the War, knew anything
22much about it. This position, for an historian, was
23described by Sir John Keegan, the well-known military
24historian, who was called on subpoena to give evidence in
25this court by Mr Irving, it was described as "perverse"
26and as "defying reason." Dr Peter Longerich, a
1distinguished historian of the period, who gave expert
2evidence for the Defendants, called it "absolutely
4 And so it was, for reasons which can be stated
6 The Holocaust - that is the systematic mass
7murder of millions of Jews, gypsies and others - took
8place in stages.
9 The first stage, beginning in the autumn of
101941, after Hitler's invasion of the Soviet Union,
11consisted of mass shootings carried out specially-formed
12SS groups and their local allies. This continued through
13into 1942 and resulted in the deaths of up to 1.5 million
14Jews living in Russia and the Baltic states.
15 The second stage, which began in December 1941
16and continued through into 1943 or later, consisted of the
17gassing of the Jews of the Warthegau and Poland. This
18resulted in the deaths of probably as many as 2.6 million
19Jews (300,000 in the Warthegau and 2.3 million in
21 The third stage, beginning with mass
22deportations to the East in the autumn of 1941, culminated
23in the deaths by gassing, mostly at Auschwitz, of Jews
24from Central, Western and Southern Europe. This stage
25lasted until late 1944. Reliable recent estimates of the
26numbers gassed at Auschwitz/Birkenhau give a figure of
1about 1.12 million.
2 Thus the total achievement of this horrendous
3exercise in systematic mass murder was probably somewhere
4between five and six million innocent lives.
5 The whole of this gigantic operation was
6orchestrated by Heinrich Himmler, the Reichsfuhrer SS, and
7his able subordinates, such as Heydrich, Globocnik and
9 As Dr Longerich explained in court, Hitler and
10Himmler were long-time intimate associates. Himmler had
11been with Hitler during the 1923 putsch and Hitler
12appointed him Reichsfuhrer SS in 1929. Throughout the
13War, and certainly while the Holocaust was underway, they
14met frequently, sometimes two or three times a week, often
15for hours at a time and often alone together. It is,
16therefore, wholly inconceivable that during the whole
17three and a half years for which the killing lasted,
18Himmler could, or indeed would, have concealed from Hitler
19the enormous, systematic operation that he was directing.
20 This becomes all the less credible when it is
21remembered, as the documents show, that Hitler was the
22mainspring and driving force of Nazi anti-Jewish policy
23from 1923 onwards and that his anti-Semitism became
24noticeably more radical, if that were possible, from the
25date that he declared war on America (11th December 1941).
26 Thus, leaving aside all the specific evidence to
1be found in the contemporary documents, including
2documents written by Himmler himself, which, fairly read
3by an open-minded, careful historian, plainly implicate
4Hitler, the overall picture is compelling: the Holocaust
5could not possibly have happened without Hitler's
6knowledge and authority. It takes only a moment's light
7reflection to realize that the contrary idea is both
8absurd and perverse: suppose, say, in July 1942, when
9Himmler went to Lublin and Auschwitz to review and advance
10the mass killing in Poland, and on his return had lunch
11with Hitler (as he did) that Hitler, previously in a state
12of complete ignorance, and in any case opposed to any
13Final Solution that involved any more than deportation of
14the Jews to Siberia or Central Africa after the War, had
15suddenly found out what Himmler was doing. What, one
16wonders, would have happened to Himmler? Well, of course,
17it didn't, not then or at any time thereafter.
18 In 1988 Mr Irving's position changed
19dramatically. Not only did Hitler not know about the
20Holocaust, the Holocaust did not happen (which is why, of
21course, Hitler did not know about it).
22 The question is why? Why this change in
23Mr Irving's position? The one-word answer is: Leuchter.
24In April 1988, Mr Irving went to Canada, for reasons best
25known to himself, to give expert evidence at the trial in
26Toronto of a man called Ernst Zundel, a dedicated
1Holocaust denier, and since 1988, one of Mr Irving's
2staunchest allies and promoters. While he was in Toronto,
3he met a man called Fred Leuchter, also proffered by
4Zundel, but rejected by the Canadian court, as an expert
5witness. Leuchter was, it seems, some kind
6of consultant on execution facilities in the USA. He'd
7been to Auschwitz and Birkenau to seek "scientific"
8evidence of the existence of homicidal gas chambers. He
9made a report on his findings.
10 Mr Irving gave this report a cursory reading.
11His conversion was instantaneous. Even as he gave
12evidence to the Canadian court, the Holocaust had suddenly
14 In June 1989, Mr Irving gave a press conference
15in London, triumphantly announcing the English publication
16of the Leuchter Report, with a foreword written by
17himself. In his foreword, Mr Irving trumpeted the virtues
18of the Report, with particular emphasis on the chemical
19analysis of the samples which Leuchter had brought back
20from Auschwitz/Birkenau. "Forensic chemistry" proclaimed
21Mr Irving, "is an exact science".
22 And, my Lord, indeed so it is. Fred Leuchter
23had taken samples from the remains of the gas chambers and
24one sample from the delousing facility in the women's camp
25at Birkenau. The samples from the gas chambers showed
26small, but significant, traces of cyanide, the active
1element in the Zyklon-B pellets used for the gassings, the
2sample from the delousing facility, relatively high
3traces. Therefore, concluded Leuchter, the "gas chambers"
4could never have been gas chambers, because, according to
5Leuchter, the concentration of hydrogen cyanide needed to
6kill humans was higher than that needed to kill lice.
7 The Leuchter report (as Mr Irving has accepted
8during this trial) was riddled with numerous errors of
9various kinds, but this error was colossal. As the
10material contained in the Leuchter report itself showed,
11the concentration of hydrogen cyanide required to kill
12humans is, in fact, some 22 times lower than that required
13to kill lice. Thus, so far from disproving the existence
14of homicidal gas chambers at Auschwitz, the Leuchter
15Report actually succeeded in proving the opposite.
16 Despite this, Mr Irving continued to cling, and
17still clings, to Leuchter's "forensic chemistry" as the
18flagship of his Holocaust denial. In consequence,
19Mr Irving has, ever since 1988, used the Leuchter Report
20as the foundation not only for his denial of the existence
21of any homicidal gas chambers at Auschwitz, but also,
22quite illogically, for the existence of any gas chambers
24 In the end, at the trial of this action,
25Mr Irving has been driven, in the face of overwhelming
26evidence presented by Professor Robert Jan van Pelt,
1Professor Christopher Browning and Dr Longerich, to
2concede that there were indeed mass murders on a huge
3scale by means of gassing at Chelmno in the Warthegau and
4at the Reinhardt camps of Belzec, Treblinka and Sobibor;
5and even that there were "some gassings" at Auschwitz.
6 His last remaining defence against the evidence
7showing that the crematoria at Birkenau were used to
8murder vast numbers of Jews by means of Zyklon B was to
9make the slippery concession that the gas chambers --
10known as Leichenkeller I at crematoria II and III at
11Birkenau -- were, indeed, gas chambers, but for gassing
12only (I quote Mr Irving's words) "objects and cadavers".
13 This last proposition is ludicrous. If this
14were not such a serious matter, it would be hilarious.
15For the evidence, clearly explained by Professor van Pelt,
16is that the gas-tight doors in Leichenkeller I at both
17those crematoria were equipped with thick glass spyholes,
18protected by metal grilles. Why, it was asked of
19Mr Irving, should these be required for the observation of
20the gassing of lice-infested "objects" and corpses? Faced
21with this, Mr Irving retreated to the position that
22Leichenkeller I had been intended to serve an alternative
23purpose as an air-raid shelter. This last refuge will be
24dealt with shortly below. Meanwhile, Professor van Pelt
25also explained that when the plans of crematoria II and
26III were redesigned in late 1942 and early 1943, the
1corpse-slides or chutes appearing on the original plans
2were removed, and the entrance to the basement moved to
3the other side of the building. Thus, if the re-design
4was intended to facilitate the gassing of corpses, people
5who are already dead, it had only succeeded in compelling
6those who were carrying the corpses to negotiate a series
7of small rooms, narrow passages, and staircases to reach
8the gassing-space. Moreover, the plans were re-designed
9at that time so as to change the way in which the doors of
10the gassing-space opened from inwards to outwards, thus
11further impeding the carrying of corpses into the space.
12 Mr Irving's air-raid shelter proposal is equally
13absurd. It is obvious that the Leichenkellers could never
14have served as air-raid shelters for an inmate population
15of 100,000 or more, even if it thought likely that the SS
16should have wanted to protect the inmates against
17air-raids. Therefore, if the Leichenkellers were ever
18intended to be used as air-raid shelters, they must have
19been intended for the SS. In fact, crematoria II and III
20are about one and a half miles from the nearest SS
21barracks. The picture of SS personnel running from their
22barracks, round the perimeter wire, in full gear, one and
23a half miles to the crematoria, under a hail of bombs, is
24just plain daft.
25 Mr Irving's concession that Leichenkeller I was
26indeed a gas chamber is, of course, entirely inconsistent
1with his continued adherence to Leuchter's chemical
2analysis as being conclusive evidence that Leichenkeller I
3never was a gas chamber. It is also wholly inconsistent
4with his final line of defence, which is
5that Leichenkeller I could never have been a gas chamber
6because the remains of the roof that can be seen at
7Birkenau do not show the holes through which the gas
8pellets were thrown.
9 This last line of defence, which emerged at a
10very late stage in Mr Irving's Holocaust denial, is, in
11any case, easily demolished. In the first place,
12Professor van Pelt, who has subjected the remains of the
13roof of Leichenkeller I at crematorium II to careful
14examination (which Mr Irving has never done), told the
15court that the remains are so fragmentary that they do not
16allow any firm conclusions to be drawn as to the existence
17or non-existence of the holes. Second, if, as Mr Irving
18accepts, Leichenkeller I was a gas chamber (for whatever
19purpose) it would always have needed apertures for
20inserting the Zyklon-B, since it never had any windows and
21only one gas-tight door. Third, even if Mr Irving were
22right that it was used for gassing objects and corpses,
23the concentration of hydrogen cyanide required for this
24would have been comparatively high, with the consequence
25that the need for tight fitting apertures which could be
26opened and closed quickly and easily, would, for the
1protection of those throwing in the pellets, have been all
2the greater. Finally, leaving aside all the mass of
3eyewitness testimony, there is a coincidence between two
4pieces of independent evidence which demonstrates
5conclusively the existence of these holes or apertures.
6In 1945, a former inmate of Auschwitz, David Olere, an
7artist, drew the ground plan of Leichenkeller I in
8crematorium III. This drawing shows a zigzag alignment of
9the gassing columns in Leichenkeller I. These are the
10columns which would have ended in the apertures through
11which the gas pellets were inserted. It happens that that
12zigzag alignment is precisely matched by an aerial
13photograph taken by the Allies in 1944, which was not
14released to the world until 1979. There can, therefore,
15be no possibility of any cross-contamination
16between Olere's drawing and the aerial photograph. No
17doubt recognizing this, Mr Irving sought to suggest at
18this trial that the aerial photograph had been faked by
19the CIA. Professor van Pelt, however, explained to the
20court that he had had the photograph tested by Dr Nevin
21Bryant at NASA and that the result of those tests showed
22conclusively that the photograph was authentic.
23 In the light of Mr Irving's concession that
24Leichenkeller I was indeed a gas chamber and of the fact
25that it is clear that it was never intended for the
26gassing of corpses or other inanimate objects, or for use
1as an air-raid shelter, the stark conclusion can only be
2this: It must have been used for gassing people, live
4 One residual shred of this aspect of Mr Irving's
5Holocaust denial remains. He disputes the numbers of
6people murdered at Auschwitz/Birkenau. This last
7barricade of Mr Irving's is based on three
8distinctly unstable legs.
9 The first leg is the so-called "death books"
10released in recent years from the archive in Moscow.
11These are incomplete. They show a total of some 74,000
12recorded deaths from various causes. They relate,
13however, and could only ever relate, to the deaths of
14prisoners registered upon arrival at Auschwitz, that is to
15say, those destined to be accommodated in the camps at
16Auschwitz and, more particularly, Birkenau, as workers
17(for a time at least).
18 There was, however, a preliminary process at
19Auschwitz, which involved separating those deemed to be
20fit for work from the rest. This was called "selection".
21The vast majority, including the old, young children, and
22mothers with small children, were "the rest". They were
23gassed immediately without ever being registered; their
24deaths were never recorded.
25 There is a great deal of eyewitness evidence
26about this from both sides, perpetrators and surviving
1victims. This evidence is confirmed by photographs taken
2by the SS during the so-called "Hungarian action" in the
3course of which, over a matter of months, some 400,000
4Hungarian Jews were gassed, in the summer of 1944. Thus,
5once again, eyewitness evidence is corroborated by
6contemporary documentary evidence.
7 In the result, the fact that the "death books"
8fail to record the deaths of perhaps 1 million people
9killed on arrival is unsurprising and inconsequential.
10 The second leg of Mr Irving's last barricade
11consists of German police radio messages decoded by the
12British during the war. Some of these came from
13Auschwitz, and of course none mentioned gassings. For
14exactly the same reasons as the death books make no
15reference to those murdered on arrival, it is not
16reasonable to expect that the radio messages from
17Auschwitz would: people who were not registered on
18arrival at Auschwitz because they were not destined for
19work in the camp but, instead, for immediate death in the
20gas chambers, would obviously not be mentioned in messages
21about recorded deaths.
22 The last leg in the barricade is Mr Irving's
23contention that Auschwitz did not have sufficient
24incineration capacity for all the corpses of those whom it
25is generally held by historians were killed there. As
26Professor van Pelt convincingly demonstrated, by reference
1to a letter of 28th June 1943, from Karl Bischoff, the
2head of the building programme at Auschwitz, to Berlin,
3the potential incineration capacity at Auschwitz/Birkenau
4at that time far exceeded any possible mortality rate
5amongst the registered inmates from "natural"
6causes, including the possibility of a repeat of the
7typhus epidemic which had struck the camp in 1942. This
8means that the incineration capacity must have been
9calculated and built, as it was in due course, to
10accommodate the mortal remains of the hundreds of
11thousands of people who were gassed on arrival.
12 Faced with this, Mr Irving's only possible
13response was (as ever) to challenge the authenticity of
14the Bischoff letter. This challenge, in the end, turned
15out to be based on nothing more than the fact that the
16administrative reference on the letter did not contain the
17year date. In fact, copies of this document have been
18retained in the archive at Moscow since 1945, when the
19Soviets liberated Auschwitz and acquired the documents
20which the SS had forgotten to destroy. Moreover, the
21document was used at the trial of the Auschwitz
22commandant, Rudolf Hoess, in 1948, and again at the trial
23of the Auschwitz architects, Dejaco and Ertl, in 1971.
24Not unnaturally, Professor van Pelt saw no reason
25whatsoever to doubt the authenticity of the document.
26Amongst other reasons for rejecting Mr Irving's proposal
1that the document might be a postwar communist forgery, is
2the fact that the incineration capacity shown in the
3document -- that is 4,756 corpses per 24 hours -- is
4very significantly lower than that estimated by the
5Soviets and the Poles (both communist regimes) shortly
6after the War. It follows that if the document were a
7communist forgery, it would be a very strange one.
8 Mr Irving's last challenge to the incineration
9capacity was that the amount of coke delivered to
10Auschwitz at the relevant time would not, in the ordinary
11way, have been sufficient to meet the required rate of
12incineration. As Professor van Pelt demonstrated, this
13challenge is demolished by two considerations which
14Mr Irving had evidently ignored: first, the procedure for
15incineration at Auschwitz involved the simultaneous
16incineration of up to four or five corpses even in every
17muffle of the ovens; and, second, in consequence, the
18corpses themselves served as fuel for the ovens, the more
19particularly so if, as they generally did, they included
20the comparatively well fed corpses of people recently
21arrived on the trains and gassed on arrival.
22 Mr Irving's Holocaust denial is thus exposed as
23a fraud. It originated with a piece so-called scientific
24research which, on analysis, turns out, if it has any
25value at all, to support the overwhelming historical
26evidence that Auschwitz was indeed a gigantic death
1factory. Mr Irving's later adornments to his gas chamber
2denial also turn out to be fragile conjectures based on no
3significant research at all: it should be noted that
4Mr Irving has never himself been to Auschwitz to examine
5the archeological remains or the documentary evidence
6contained in the archive. It follows that some other
7reason must be sought to explain his devotion, over many
8years, and even in this court, though his case has changed
9and changed back again throughout the trial, to the
10bizarre idea that no significant numbers of people were
11murdered in the homicidal gas chambers at
12Auschwitz/Birkenau. The reasons are not far to seek.
13 As the evidence in this court has shown,
14Mr Irving is a right-wing extremist, a racist and, in
15particular, a rabid anti-Semite.
16 Two examples, again, amongst many, will suffice
17to illustrate this proposition.
18 In a speech which he made at Tampa, Florida, on
196th October 1995 to the National Alliance, a white
20supremacist and profoundly anti-Semitic group, Mr Irving
21said this about the Jews:
22 "You have been disliked for 3,000 years. You
23have been disliked so much that you have hounded from
24country to country, from pogrom to purge, from purge back
25to pogrom. And yet you never ask yourselves why you are
26disliked, that's the difference between you and me. It
1would never occur to you to look in the mirror and say
2"Why am I disliked, what is it the rest of humanity
3doesn't like about the Jewish people, to such an extent
4that they repeatedly put us through the grinder?" And he
5(a heckler whom Mr Irving said he had perceived to be
6Jewish) went beserk, said Mr Irving. He said (the
7heckler), "Are you trying to say that we are responsible
8for Auschwitz ourselves"? And I, that is Mr Irving, said,
9"Well, the short answer is yes". The short answer I have
10to say is yes ... If you (the Jews) had behaved
11differently over the intervening 3,000 years, the Germans
12would have gone about their business and would not have
13found it necessary to go around doing whatever they did to
14you. Nor would the Russians, nor the Ukranians, nor the
15Lithuanians, Estonians, Latvians, and all the other
16countries where you've had a rough time. So why have you
17never asked yourselves that question?" So much for the
19 As to the blacks (and homosexuals), Mr Irving,
20in an entry in his private diary on 10th November 1987, on
21the occasion of a visit to South Africa, recorded his own
23 "God works in mysterious ways, but here (that is
24South Africa) we agree he appears to be working
25remorselessly towards a Final Solution which may cruelly
26wipe out not only blacks and homosexuals, but a large part
1of the drug addicts and sexually promiscuous and
2indiscriminate heterosexual population as well."
3 These examples, again the tip of, I am afraid, a
4very large iceberg, demonstrate, beyond doubt, that
5Mr Irving is a profound racist and a radical anti-Semite.
6But this is not the end of the story. For many years,
7Mr Irving has travelled about the world giving vent to his
8views at gatherings composed of, and organized by, others
9of similar opinion.
10 Until he was banned in 1993. Mr Irving's
11energies were particularly devoted to the propagation of
12his ideology in Germany, where pro-Nazi sentiment has not
13only persisted but alas, since reunification, undergone a
14significant revival, particularly in the East.
15 This is chilling exposed by a demonstration of
16neo-Nazi boot boys, waving Nazi flags and chanting racist
17slogans, which was addressed by Mr Irving at Halle in East
18Germany in November 1991. In his diary Mr Irving
19described his speech at this rally as "rabble rousing", no
20doubt for good reason. The speech was greeted with
21enthusiasm, not least, perhaps, because he predicted the
22recreation of a greater Germany, by the reconquest,
23through economic power, of the former Third Reich
24territories in the East. This speech was greeted with
25enthusiasm and, unsurprisingly, shouts of "Sieg Heil!".
26 Holocaust denial is forbidden in Germany
1(notwithstanding which Mr Irving has, from time to time,
2managed to slip in direct statements that there were never
3any gas chambers). Elsewhere, however, it has been a
4constant theme of Mr Irving's public utterances. He has
5expressed it, on numerous occasions, in terms which
6variously attribute the blame for the Holocaust on the
7Jews themselves, accuse Holocaust survivors of lying in
8order to extort money from the German Government, and pour
9scorn on the suffering of Holocaust victims, both alive
10and dead. These utterances are often greeted with warm
11applause and loud laughter by his audiences.
12 Given that Mr Irving has repeatedly falsified
13history in pursuit of his obsessive desire to exonerate
14Hitler of responsibility for the Nazi persecution of the
15Jews and, in particular, of responsibility for the
16Holocaust, and given that he has repeatedly denied the
17Holocaust, without any historical foundation, and in the
18face of overwhelming evidence that the Holocaust took
19place on the scale and in the manner generally described
20by reputable historians, the question now arises why
21Mr Irving should have engaged so actively in the promotion
22of these historical falsehoods.
23 The answers suggested by the evidence are:
24Mr Irving is an anti-Semite; Holocaust denial, in the form
25in which it is purveyed by Mr Irving, is an obvious
26expression of anti-Semitism, and is music to the ears of
1the neo-Nazis and other right-wing extremists to whom he
2purveys it; Mr Irving is a Hitler partisan, who has
3falsified history on a staggering scale in order to
4"prove" Hitler's innocence; this, like Holocaust denial,
5is obviously very appealing to his fellow travellers --
6after all, if the Holocaust were a "myth", then,
7obviously, Hitler could have no responsibility for it.
8 How far, if at all, Mr Irving's anti-Semitism is
9a cause of his Hitler apology, or vice versa, is quite
10unimportant. Whether they are taken together, or
11individually, it is clear that they have led him to
12prostitute his reputation as a serious historian (spurious
13though it can now be seen to have been) for the sake of a
14bogus rehabilitation of Hitler and the dissemination of
15virulent anti-Semitic propaganda.
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Rampton, can I raise with you now the
17points I think I need to clarify?
18 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not think it will take very long. There
20is just one point that occurred to me as you were reading
21out the statement, and it relates to paragraph 41, where
22you are dealing with incineration capacity.
23 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY: The point you are making is that it is
25strange to suggest that the Bischoff document is a
26communist forgery, since it shows a rate of incineration
1lower than was estimated by the Soviets and the Poles. Am
2I right in thinking that the estimate you are there
3talking about by the Soviets and the Poles is the estimate
4of the total numbers killed, rather than of incineration
5capacity or rate of incineration?
6 MR RAMPTON: No, my Lord. Well, I think that is partly right,
7if I may say so. But also on page 207 of Professor van
8Pelt's report, there is rather a dense paragraph.
9I cannot remember now off the top of my head how the
10answers come out. There is rather dense paragraph from
11which one can certainly work out, and I know Professor van
12Pelt told me what the totals were by but I have forgotten
13them. One can certainly work out that the 4,756 corpses
14per 24 hours was significantly lower than the Russian and
15Polish estimates for incineration. I think the Russian
16figure was 50 per cent higher and the Polish figure about
1730 per cent higher.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Thank you very much. I did not know that.
19You have given me the reference so that has dealt with
20that. The other questions are really all rather broader
21ones. Can I take them in what I hope is the sensible
22order? The first one relates to deportation, and I will
23ask Mr Irving the same question in due course. It is not
24really clear to me what, if any, is the issue between the
25parties as to that particular phase.
26 MR RAMPTON: No. I have never understood that there was.
1 MR JUSTICE GRAY: No.
2 MR RAMPTON: Dr Longerich told your Lordship, and we accept, we
3have to, he knows a lot more about it than we do, that in
4the beginning the transportation of the German and other
5central European, French and Greek, Italian Jews was just
6to the East, where they were put into ghettoes which had
7been vacated by the murder of the Polish Jews.
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: A sort of two phase deportation exercise?
9 MR RAMPTON: Yes. Then eventually, probably sometime in 1942,
10they started killing the arrivals. There is a notable
11document your Lordship will remember from the Gestapo at
12Lodz, explaining how they cleared one lot and made room
13for the other lot.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. Leaving aside the extermination, which
15is a separate issue and I understand what Mr Irving says
16about that, you do not understand there to be any argument
17or dispute between the Defendants and Mr Irving as to the
18fact that the deportation took place, and indeed also as
19to the fact that Hitler knew about it, because it is
20Mr Irving's case that that was all that was involved.
21 MR RAMPTON: No question. Hitler gave the order for it. As
22your Lordship will have seen, in one of the passages in
23our long submission, we draw attention, I forget which
24book it is, to a statement by Mr Irving where he says
25Hitler was neither consulted nor knew anything about the
26deportations. Why he should say that, I have absolutely
1no idea, but the fact is that Hitler gave the order.
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: That was Hitler's preferred solution, as
3opposed to extermination, according to Mr Irving's
5 MR RAMPTON: In 1941 it may or may not be so, so far as the
6German Jews are concerned.
7 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes.
8 MR RAMPTON: So far as the rest, anyway.
9 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I noticed something this morning which I had
10not noticed before, which is that -- have you got your
11more detailed written submissions?
12 MR RAMPTON: Yes, I have.
13 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Would you go to Tab 5 (i)?
14 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: There is at page 56, paragraph 4, which seems
16to continue over the page on page 57.
17 MR RAMPTON: Yes, it does.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: The next paragraph is 12. I see what I have
19done. Yes, there is an 11 somewhere lurking way back.
20 MR RAMPTON: Paragraph 11 is on page 53. It has a large number
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. The next broad question is this. I am
23really asking for perhaps a bit of assistance on this. It
24is what we have called the genesis of the gassing
25programme, or the extermination programme.
26 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
1 MR JUSTICE GRAY: And what you have done, and this is your
2(ii), is very helpfully to set out what you say are
3gathered together from various files the various
4documentary references which demonstrate the setting up of
5the gassing in the Reinhardt camps and so on.
6 The slight problem I have with this way of
7dealing with it is that one has to try to confine the
8judgment within some sort reasonable bounds -- it is going
9to be horrifically long anyway -- and I do not think it is
10feasible to even begin to try to incorporate all those
11references. It would just overload it.
12 MR RAMPTON: No, we were not expecting that your Lordship
13would, of course not. It seemed to us, though, that now
14that one -- I mean, I am only a lawyer too -- had the
15chance to look at the thing with some considerable care,
16that that table led the eye through the stages really
17quite well; but if that is not so, then all I perhaps need
18to do is to refer your Lordship back to the little summary
19that I have given in this latest statement starting on
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, but I think the problem is what I would
22really ideally want to aim at myself in order to give
23anyone reading the judgment a sufficient but not
24overextended view of what the documents show to have
25happened is something in between the two.
26 MR RAMPTON: I think what I am being asked ----
1 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You will think I am by very awkward.
2 MR RAMPTON: No, of course not. I do not know how much time I
3have, that is all. What I think I am being asked for and
4will willingly supply -- I might even get Dr Longerich to
5write it actually -- is really a chronological summary
6with a bit more detail than I have put in here and a bit
7less than I have put into the main submission.
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think that is probably right. Really in a
9way it perhaps will highlight the most significant
10documents. I think it is right, I mean, as you realize,
11I have been trying to sort of keep a tag on what the
12evidence has revealed as it has gone on, so I think I have
13quite a lot of them, but I suspect I am missing some of
14the important ones and I would like to ----
15 MR RAMPTON: Yes, I mean, I do not say I have covered
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can I invite you to do that? Not at enormous
18length, but I think it would be helpful.
19 MR RAMPTON: We will do it in the course of the rest of this
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: And bearing in mind, if I may suggest it, the
22issues that arise on the genesis of the gassing as opposed
23to Auschwitz, which I will deal with separately, seem to
24me to be, firstly, on what scale the extermination took
25place, and that is not really much of an issue now, as I
26understand Mr Irving's case.
1 MR RAMPTON: Not an issue at all.
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: But also Hitler's knowledge. So that is the
3thing to concentrate on, and I appreciate to some extent
4that may not any longer be as stark an issue as it was.
5 MR RAMPTON: That is covered specifically, not only with what
6I said today in general terms, but there was an exercise
7that I did in re-examination with Professor Longerich
8which is referred back to in here, just that really the
9month of July and into August 1942, which demonstrates in
10Professor Longerich's view, which we obviously adopt, that
11it is inconceivable that while Himmler was supervising the
12mass extermination of goodness knows how many people in
13the General Government Hitler did not know about it.
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. One of the things I was going to ask
15Mr Irving is whether he accepts the concessions that you
16attribute to him at various stages of your submission.
17 MR RAMPTON: I have given the reference to it somewhere in
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You have, indeed, but I think it is right it
20should be put to him.
21 MR RAMPTON: I mean, what he says now, his position has changed
22throughout the case, but really the concessions, if I may
23say this now, which we have listed in various places in
24this long submission are those which were first driven out
25of him by cross-examination, no cleverness on my part, but
26by the evidence which was presented to him, and it was not
1selective, in cross-examination. His first reaction,
2eventually in some case, sometimes quite quickly, was to
3say, "Yes, are you right, it did happen".
4 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, but I must find out what the up-to-date
5position is because I think it is fair to say that
6sometimes Mr Irving has fluctuated.
7 MR RAMPTON: As I say, I do not attach much weight to what
8I might call back tracking.
9 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Right. If Professor Longerich can perform
10that exercise, but also focus, if he would, on the extent
11of Hitler's knowledge and the reason for saying that he
12knew about the gassing at Chelmno and all the rest.
13 The next question is a very short one and
14I think I know what your answer is, but I will ask it all
15the same: part of your case against Mr Irving is that he
16is a racist, leaving aside anti-Semitism, that he is a
17racist and you have a number of quotations from his
19 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY: How does that bear on (a) the words
21complained of, and (b) the meanings that you seek to
23 MR RAMPTON: I suppose we seek to justify simply that he holds
24extremist views in the written bit. In the statement of
25case, I cannot remember. It says something ----
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: There is a bit right at the back.
1 MR RAMPTON: --- rather more specific than that.
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Perhaps my question really is, there is
3nothing about racism, is there, in ----
4 MR RAMPTON: No.
5 MR JUSTICE GRAY: --- Professor Lipstadt's book?
6 MR RAMPTON: Perhaps I should ask her. There is some allusion
7to it, she says.
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am not sure there is; if there is, I would
9like to know what it is.
10 MR RAMPTON: But, maybe your Lordship is right, there is this
11to be said, perhaps, if a man is and out and out racist
12which we would propose that it is obvious from his own
13private jottings, never mind what he says publicly, that
14Mr Irving is, and if anti-Semitism is a form of racism,
15which it plainly is, then it is a bit like a case where
16you accuse a man of grievous bodily harm and at trial
17succeed in proving that he is a murderer.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. I thought that would be your answer,
19that anti-Semitism is just one form of racism.
20 MR RAMPTON: Yes, indeed.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: And, therefore, it is relevant, you would
22say, by way of justification of an anti-Semitic allegation
23that there is a general streak of racism to be perceived
24in what Mr Irving has said and done.
25 MR RAMPTON: It is evidence of his general disposition to
26disparage and be hostile towards people of different
1colours, ethnic backgrounds and cultures.
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. Now perhaps, for me, at any rate, the
3most important question is to be absolutely clear about
4what you are saying in the section which is section 9,
5I think, or (ix) towards the back of your written
6submission about assessing Mr Irving as an historian.
7 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Do you mind turning it up because I just want
9to be absolutely clear about it this because I think it is
10exceedingly important. You first refer back to your
11historiographical criticisms, and I am right in taking it,
12am I not, it is pretty obvious from what you there say by
13way of criticism of Mr Irving that a number of the
14criticisms are criticisms that he has deliberately
15falsified the record.
16 MR RAMPTON: Every single one.
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY: All right, every single one. Now, you do not
18expressly say so, but you may tell me it is implicit, that
19when you deal with his partisanship for Hitler which is
20(ii), you do not expressly say that that is all deliberate
21distortion and manipulation and so on.
22 MR RAMPTON: No.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY: But that I understand to be your case, am
25 MR RAMPTON: No, what I say is that he has sought to exculpate
26Hitler; that he has done that by a massive falsification
1of the underlying historical record on a large number of
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: But going beyond what you have selected or
4Professor Evans has selected as the historical
6 MR RAMPTON: Then I say if one looks at the general evidence as
7an objective, open-minded, careful, dispassionate
8historian, that Hitler was, indeed, responsible, knew all
9about it, and authorized it, the conclusion is
10irresistible that he did. Mr Irving has shut that window,
11as it were, and has got on with the shut window behind him
12with the falsification of history so as to exculpate
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, so this is again another instance of
15deliberate manipulation which kind of runs through ----
16 MR RAMPTON: It is a kind of deliberate blindness to the
17evidence. What he does not like, he ignores.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Deliberate blindness?
19 MR RAMPTON: Yes, it is deliberate blindness. He knows about,
20he has known for years, about report No. 51, for example.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: So it is telescope to the wrong eye?
22 MR RAMPTON: Yes, and for years, despite report No. 51, until
23we got him into this court, until he got us into this
24court, he did not accept that Hitler sanctioned the mass
25shootings in the East. It is that kind of phenomenon.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: So that the partisanship. Then Auschwitz,
1well I think it is pretty clear what your case is about
3 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
4 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You do not specifically rely on the denials
5of the Holocaust, but, presumably, you say in relation to
6those that they are denials which Mr Irving must have
7known were false when he made them.
8 MR RAMPTON: No, again this is a bit like the sort of general
9refusal to accept Hitler's knowledge. What I say about
10that is that his denials of the Holocaust have been made
11without any reference whatsoever to any reliable evidence.
12They started to be made on Leichter which is an obviously
13completely hopeless position for any kind of
14self-respecting historian or, indeed, anybody else for
15that matter. Then much later on down the road he adds in
16one or two other things like the death books and the
17decrypts. Finally, just before this trial or a year or so
18before this trial, he comes to the runes. He has never
19been to Auschwitz. He has never looked at any o the
20documents or the plans. Such evidence as he knows about
21he dismisses out of hand as being mere eyewitness
22testimony. When he comes to see an aerial photograph
23showing the holes in the roof, he says it is a forgery;
24the incineration capacity document is also a forgery, and
25so on and so forth. This means that his denial must have
26another agenda because it cannot be the product of genuine
1bona fide historical research and contemplation.
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: So his state of mind which is -- and it is
3important that I am absolutely clear what it is that is
4being suggested in relation to the various issues that
5have arisen in the case -- this is an area where you put
6it as being deliberately perverse blindness and acting in
7pursuance of what is, effectively, a neoNazi agenda, is
9 MR RAMPTON: Yes, I put it in two ways and I will say it as
10shortly as I can. I put it forward as evidence of
11somebody who cannot be regarded as a serious historian,
12because what he has done is to allow his historical
13apparatus to be distorted by something beyond -- extrinsic
14or ulterior. Looking at the way in which he expresses
15Holocaust denial and the audiences to whom he expresses
16that denial and the things that he says on those
17occasions, one is driven to the conclusion that the hidden
18agenda, the reason for the historical incompetence, if I
19can I call it that (though there is a much stronger word
20that I could think of) is that he is at root deeply
21anti-Semitic and a neo-Nazi, as your Lordship just said.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Well, that raises the last question that
23I wanted to canvass with you, and it is anti-Semitism and,
24indeed, the racism and the extremism and all the rest of
25it. I find it a little, and I find it throughout the
26case, bit difficult to see how, if at all, those
1allegations against Mr Irving dovetail with the general
2allegation that he falsifies to an extent deliberately the
3historical record because it seems to me, and I just want
4to know how you put it, that if somebody is anti-Semitic,
5and leave aside racism, but anti-Semitic and extremist, he
6is perfectly capable of being, as it were, honestly
7anti-Semitic and honestly extremist in the sense that he
8is holding those views and expressing those views because
9they are, indeed, his views.
10 MR RAMPTON: Yes.
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Now, it seems to me that probably, if you
12come down to it, that the anti-Semitism is a completely
13separate allegation which really has precious little
14bearing on your broader and perhaps more important case
15that Mr Irving has manipulated the data and falsified the
16record, or do you say that they are corrected in some way
17and, if so, how?
18 MR RAMPTON: I propose that they probably are connected. I do
19not have to do that, but I propose that they are
20connected, and that the link between them, I have no doubt
21at all he is genuinely anti-Semitic and all the more
22defamatory it is of him to say so, and it is true.
23I propose that certainly, that he is genuinely profoundly
24anti-Semitic. But the bridge between the Holocaust denial
25and the Hitler apology from anti-Semitism is a very easy
26one to build, because what more would an historian who is
1an anti-Semite want to do in exculpation of Hitler which
2he has been trying to do by telling lies about history for
3years, what more would he want to do than to deny the
5 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, but he might believe what he is saying.
6That is the point. That is why it is important.
7 MR RAMPTON: Believe what he is saying about what?
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: About the Holocaust.
9 MR RAMPTON: There is no way he could believe what he is saying
10about the Holocaust if it ----
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I understand that, but that has nothing to do
12with his anti-Semitism. I am not sure I am making my
13point clear to you that ----
14 MR RAMPTON: No, I take a profound anti-Semite, I see that he
15has denied the Holocaust without any historical
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY: But I understand all of that.
18 MR RAMPTON: Then I ask myself, what is his reason for denying
19the Holocaust because he has not got a good historical
20one, there must be another one? And the most obvious
21thing for a profound and genuine anti-Semite to do because
22it suits his book is to leap into Holocaust denial without
23any proper evidence at all, any evidence at all, and cart
24it around the world in front of him and to audiences at
25other anti-Semites and neofascists.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is another agenda, you would say?
1 MR RAMPTON: Yes, that is the other agenda; the promotion of
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes.
4 MR RAMPTON: And given that there is, as I say, absolutely no
5historical foundation, no proper historical foundation,
6for Holocaust denial, and given that there is evidence
7that Mr Irving is an anti-Semite, as I say, the bridge
8between the one and the other is very easy to build
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, thank you.
11 MR RAMPTON: And the same goes for Hitler exculpation.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Thank you very much. Now, Mr Irving, it is
14 MR IRVING: My Lord, it might be proper, perhaps, to have a
15five-minute adjournment as the Defendants have provided to
16me a list of objections they make to my closing statement
17and, indeed, I think it would be fair to them if I
18were just to review those objections and see if I ought to
19take them on board.
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not have any difficulty with that. Will
21five minutes be enough?
22 MR IRVING: Five minutes will be enough.
23 (Short Adjournment)
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, Mr Irving?
25 MR IRVING: My Lord, rather like going over the top in
26Gallipoli, but my father was in that battle so I know what
1it is like. I will be making omissions from the text that
2I gave your Lordship and I will indicate by saying that
3I am omitting a sentence or a paragraph so that your
4Lordship can follow.
5 MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is very kind.
6 MR IRVING: May it please the court. The Defendants in this
7action, the publisher Penguin Books Limited and the
8American scholar Deborah Lipstadt, have sought to cast
9this trial as being about the reputation of the Holocaust.
10It is not.
11 The world's press have also reported it in this
12way. Again, it is not.
13 This trial is about my reputation as a human
14being, as an historian of integrity, and - thanks to the
15remarks made by Mr Rampton - as a father. The Defendants
16are saying, and have so convinced many people, that I am
17not entitled to continue to earn a living in the way that
18I have earned it for nearly 40 years. A judgment in my
19favour is no more than that judgment that disputed points
20which I have made about some aspect of the narrative are
21not so absurd, given the evidence, as to disqualify me
22from the ranks of historians. Under the laws of
23defamation as they exist in this country, it could not be
24anything else, and nor must the defence team, no matter
25how powerful, how moneyed, or eloquent, or numerous, be
26allowed by their tactics to skew it in any other way.
1 I may add that the points I have made do not
2necessarily lessen the horror or the burden of guilt.
3I have always accepted that Adolf Hitler, as Head of State
4and government in Germany, was responsible for the
5Holocaust. I said, in the Introduction to my flagship
6biography, Hitler's War (this is a reference to the 1991
8 If this biography were simply a history of the
9rise and fall of Hitler's Reich, it would be legitimate to
10conclude: "Hitler killed the Jews". But my years of
11investigations suggested that many others were
12responsible, that the chain of responsibility was not as
13clear cut as that. Nothing that I have heard in this
14Court since January 11th has persuaded me that I was wrong
15on this account.
16 These latter points lead to another
17consideration. Your Lordship will have heard of the -
18largely successful - effort to drive me out of business as
19an historian. This Court has seen the timidity, in my
20submission, with which historians have already been
21fraught once Holocaust is questioned, not denied,
22questioned. One notable historian, whose name has been
23mentioned this morning, ordered by summons by myself to
24attend, showed himself reluctant even to confirm what he
25had written in my favour, repeatedly, over the last 20
1 A judgment rendered against me will make this
2paralysis in the writing of history definitive; from then
3on, no one will dare to discuss who exactly was involved
4in each stage of the Holocaust -- rather like in Germany
5now, you cannot do it any more -- or how extensive it
6was. From then on, discussion will revolve around "safe"
7subjects, like sacred texts in the Middle Ages, or Marx in
8the old Soviet Union, or the Koran in some fundamentalist
9state today. Every historian will know that his critique
10needs to stop sharply at the boundaries defined by certain
11authorities. He will have a choice; accept the official
12version, holus-bolus; or stop being an historian.
13 A judgment in my favour does not mean that the
14Holocaust never happened; it means only that in England
15today discussion is still permitted. My opponents would
16still be able to say, just as now, would still be able,
17just as now, to produce other documents if they can; to
18expound alternative interpretations. They would be as
19free as ever to declare that they think that I am wrong
20and all the other things that have been said about me
21today. They would be impeded in one way only: they would
22not be able to say in a loud and authoritative voice that
23I am not an historian, and that my books must be banned.
24As a result of my work (and of this case) the Holocaust,
25in fact, has been researched more, not less. Those who
26(rightly) believe that these crimes should never be
1forgotten (and I stress the word "rightly"), these crimes
2should never be forgotten, should ask whether their case
3is better served by a compulsory - and dead - text imposed
4by law and intimidation, or by a live and on-going
6 Our Common Law has at its kernel an
7"adversCourier" procedure whereby, it is believed, truth is
8best elicited by each side putting their case as strongly
9as possible. We have heard some pretty strong things said
10today. I agree with English Common Law.
11 I read in The Independent, a newspaper in this
12country, in a lengthy and deeply libellous article
13published only last week about me, these words: "But if
14he wins, it will open the door for revisionists to rewrite
15any event in history without the requirement to consider
16evidence that does not suit them and without fear that
17they will be publicly denounced for their distortion".
18 My Lord, in bygone days, I venture to submit,
19such an article, published while an action was literally
20sub judice, would have been a clear contempt. Your
21Lordship will have noticed that I wearied, after a few
22days, of drawing attention to the coverage of this trial
23in the media. Allow me, however, to introduce one
24cautionary statistic: not including the fuss about the
25Eichmann manuscript, the British press have published no
26fewer than 167 reports during the seven days that I was on
1the witness stand, that is 24 per day; but just 58 reports
2during the 20 days when the boot was on the other foot and
3I was cross-examining Mr Rampton's fine witnesses, that is
4roughly three per day. That is a disparity of about eight
5to one. I make no complaint about that. If your Lordship
6has noticed any of these items, you will perhaps have
7observed that the reporting in both cases is almost
8exclusively devoted to the defence statements, or their
9questions to me, and not to the product of the
10examination. That is the way things are in a free
11society. The Court, however, operates by different
12standards, and it will not allow public sentiment, I hope,
13to guide its verdict.
14 I believe it was Churchill who once said, "There
15is such thing as public opinion, there is only published
16opinion". Given such a baleful glare from the press
17gallery, my Lord, I am glad that her Majesty has such a
18resolute officer presiding over this case. The outcome is
19in your Lordship's hands and yours alone, and I am glad,
20I am confident that nothing that the press has written, or
21may yet write, will deflect your Lordship from arriving at
22a just conclusion.
23 The Defendants have sold around the world a
24book, "Denying the Holocaust". May I say here that I see
25Penguin Books among the Defendants to my sorrow, as they
26have published my own works in the past. They continuing
1even today, however, and I stress this fact, to sell this
2book for profit, in the knowledge that it contains very
3defamatory allegations and that those allegations are held
4to be untrue. It is a reckless, even foolhardy, gesture
5which I submit, my Lord, goes to the question of
6aggravated damages when the time comes.
7 Neither of these Defendants evidently bothered
8even to have the manuscript professionally read for
9libel. I say "evidently" because we do not know: they
10have not deigned to enter the witness box themselves, no
11executive of Penguin Books, not the author who has, I must
12say, sat in this room for the two months that the trial
13has continued, neither of them has deigned to enter the
14witness box to answer even that most straightforward and
15elementary of questions, was there a libel reading of this
16book? Nor have they answered this question when it was
17put to them in writing. Such a report, a libel report,
18is, in my submission, not privileged, and I would have
19been well prepared to argue the point; had they claimed
20that privilege, I would have asked, "On what grounds?" If
21a report was written, it should and no doubt would have
22been disclosed, and it was not disclosed. So we are
23entitled to assume that they did not bother to have the
24book read. It does not exist, the report.
25 Whatever other limited excuses - whether of
26sheer ignorance, or of innocent dissemination - that the
1publisher might have (quite wrongfully) deployed for
2publishing this malicious and deeply flawed work were
3destroyed from the moment when they received my writ in
4September 1996, and were thus informed, if they did not
5know in fact already, of the nature and scope of the
6libels it contains. And, as said, they have continued to
7sell it, hoping no doubt to cash in on, to profit from,
8the notoriety gained by these libel proceedings, which is
9a textbook case of Rookes v. Barnard if there ever was
10one, since the book they are selling still contains even
11the several libels which they have made no attempt here to
12justify. They have to justify their allegations -- I am
13referring, of course, my Lord, to the ----
14 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes.
15 MR IRVING: --- matters they have pleaded section 5 on
16originally. They have made no attempt to justify their
17allegations or their defence fails -- I am sorry. They
18have to justify their allegations, or their defence fails;
19and as your Lordship is aware, where the defamations are
20particularly grave, a higher burden of proof falls upon
21them than the mere balance of probabilities that is
22normally acceptable. In both Defendants, moreover, there
23is clear evidence of malice, both in those few documents
24which the author of this work has disclosed -- I stress
25the word "few"; pitifully few documents have been placed
26in my hands -- and in the fact that the same firm of
1publishers had previously distributed a work, a book, in
2which I was variously caricatured as Adolf Hitler and
3wearing swastika eyeglasses.
4 The very worst of the libels are so blatant that
5neither Defendant has insulted the intelligence of this
6Court by offering any justification to them. They hope
7instead to divert the court's attention by reference to
8distant and notorious matters of history and by calling me
9a racist. In consequence, for 30 days or more of this
10Court's time, we have had to rake over the embers of what
11may be one of the greatest crimes known to Mankind: a
12harrowing, time-wasting, needless effort, which has
13yielded even now few answers to great questions and
14mysteries which even the world's finest academics have so
15far not managed to unravel.
16 I come now to one of the first of these
17unanswered and unjustified libels which will come as a
18surprise to many people in this courtroom because there is
19no reference to it in Mr Rampton's summary. On page 14 of
20the book, the Defendants published one of the gravest
21libels that can be imagined for a respectable English
22citizen who lives a very public life, namely that I
23consort with the extremist anti-Semitic Russian group
24Pamyat, with violent anti-Israeli murderers, with
25extremist terrorists, and with Louis Farrakhan, a Black
26Power agitator who is known to be acting in the pay of a
1foreign power, namely the Libyan dictator. This is not
2just the simple allegation of associating with
3"extremists", the kind of people who use fountain pens to
4deliver their extremism, about which they have made so
5much. The words on page 14 are as follows - and I make no
6apology, my Lord, for reminding the Court of them, the
7Second Defendant wrote:
8 "The confluence between anti-Israel,
9anti-Semitic, and Holocaust denial forces was exemplified
10by a world anti-Zionist conference scheduled for Sweden in
11November 1992. Though cancelled at the last minute by the
12Swedish government, scheduled speakers included black
13Muslim leader, Louis Farrakhan, Faurrison, Irving", that
14is me, "and Leuchter. Also scheduled to participate were
15representatives of a variety of anti-Semetic and
16anti-Israel organisations, including the Russian group
17Pamyat, the Iranian-backed Hizbollah and the
18fundamentalist Islamic organization Hamas".
19 Now, that whole statement was a reckless lie.
20It appears from their discovery to have been based on a
21press release issued by the jewish Telegraph Agency in New
22York which neither that agency or the Defendants made any
23attempt to verify. The Court will have noticed in one of
24my bundles the letter which I sent to every Scandinavian
25Embassy at the time, anxiously denying this allegation. I
26have pleaded, as your Lordship is aware, that the innuendo
1was that I was "thereby agreeing to appear in public in
2support of and alongside violent and extremist speakers,
3including representatives of the violent and extremist
4anti-Semitic Russian group Pamyat ... the Hizbollah ...
5the Hamas ... Farrakhan ... who is known as a Jew-baiting
6black agitator ... and he is known as an admirer of Hitler
7and who is in the pay of Colonel Gaddafi".
8 And "that the true or legal innuendo of the word
9'Hizbollah' is that used to refer to and describe a known
10international terrorist organization ... in the Lebanon,
11also known as Hizbollah whose guerrillas kill Israel
12citizens and soldiers ... provoking retaliation, and which
13organization has been determined by President Clinton ...
14as being among the enemies of peace and, whose officials
15and armed activists are now being hunted down by the ...
17 As for the Hamas, much the same, I set out in
18paragraph 12 of my statement of claim that "the true or
19legal unnuendo of the words 'Hammas' is that of an Islamic
20fundamentalist terrorist organization similar in nature to
22 I submitted to your Lordship at the beginning of
23this trial a representative selection of news reports from
24reputable, reliable outlets, including the BBC, on the
25murderous nature of the organizations involved, concerned.
26 In my pleadings I also argued that by these
1allegations I had "been brought into hatred, ridicule,
2contempt, risk of personal injury and/or assassination".
3I know, my Lord, the law of defamation has no concern for
4people's personal safety, but it certainly has concern for
5their reputation; and the allegation that I was consorting
6with the violent extremist body who goes around with
7machine guns and bombs and bullets is substantially more
8serious, in my view, than the allegation that I consort
9with people who use their fountain pens to disseminate
10crack pot ideas.
11 In my pleadings -- the nature of the libel, and
12the damage that it caused, hardly needed arguing in detail
13here. Put in into domestic context, if the Defendants, if
14the Defendants, had equally untruthfully stated, for
15example, in a Channel 4 television documentary (and there
16is a reason why I say that) that I had consorted with
17Ulster loyalist death squads who were part of a conspiracy
18to murder Roman Catholic nationalists, itself a grave
19accusation which would also put me at risk of
20assassination, and if the Defendants made no attempt to
21justify that libel, then I respectfully submit that your
22Lordship would have no hesitation giving judgment in my
23favour. I submit there is no difference fundamentally
24between these examples.
25 Now, I was going to say that the Defendants have
26relied on section 5 of the Defamation Act, but
1I understand from what Mr Rampton said yesterday that they
2are not relying on that section 5 at all, my Lord.
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: No, I do not think that is quite right. I
4think what he said was that they say they do not need
5section 5, that is their primary position, but that if
6they do need it, then, indeed, they rely on it. So do not
7assume that it has disappeared out of the picture because
8it has not.
9 MR IRVING: In that case, I will leave it as I originally
10wrote. I am aware that your Lordship is also capable, of
11course, of putting something in section 5 if you consider
12it to come under section 5.
13 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I probably would be, but that I believe to
14Mr Rampton's position.
15 MR IRVING: This is not the place to make a submission, but my
16position is that there is no common sting between those
17allegations. They are totally different kinds of
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Elaborate on that later.
20 MR IRVING: In other words, they accuse a respectable
21Englishman of consorting with terrorists and murderers,
22and then plead the relative insignificance of the
23accusation when it turns out to be a reckless lie. And
24there are other incendiary lies which they have stuffed
25into that particular sand-bucket, section 5 of the
26Defamation Act, in the hope that they will sputter out:
1the Defendants repeated the story in that book - first
2published in Izvestia - that I placed a portrait of Adolf
3Hitler over my desk. For that lie -- I have had hundreds
4of journalists visiting me over the 30 years and never
5once has that picture occurred to any of them for there is
6no such picture. For that lie too they have offered no
7justification. I read incidentally recently in Literary
8Review that Lloyd George had signed photographs of both
9Hitler and Mussolini on display, and that was a British
10Prime Minister. The only signed paragraph in my
11apartment, as many journalists have observed, is one of
12Sir Winston Churchill.
13 So I submit that your Lordship should not accept
14the Defendants' contention, if they wish to stand by it,
15that these allegations should be disregarded on the basis
16of section 5. Even if they could sufficiently justify
17their claim that I deliberately bent history in favour of
18Hitler, and I do not believe they can, I submit that they
19have not, it would still "materially injure the
20plaintiff's reputation", which is the word of the Act,
21section 5, to say that I had a portrait of Hitler above my
22desk. The claims which they do seek to justify suggest
23that I am culpably careless and (perhaps unconsciously)
24sympathetic to Hitler; bad enough, bad enough, but having
25a portrait of that man -- I am sorry, having a portrait of
26that man above my desk implies a full-hearted 100 per cent
1conscious commitment to that man, which is very
3 I have provided your Lordship on an earlier
4occasion in one bundle a number of passages quoted from
5AJP Taylor's works, a very famous English historian and
6writer. Taylor himself accepted that they inevitably
7improved Hitler's image -- the words that Taylor had
8written -- maybe he did not originate the actual mass
9murders himself, wrote Taylor; maybe he did slip into war
10with Britain rather than planning it; maybe the Anschluss
11with Austria was more a stroke of good fortune, which he
12grasped, rather than long planned as a take-over; maybe
13the Nazis did not burn down the Reichstag building in
141933. These views of Taylor have been criticised as being
15wrong, even as being too sympathetic to Hitler. But
16everybody would accept that to suggest that Taylor had a
17portrait of Hitler "over his desk" would suggest something
18far worse. So it should be for me to0.
19 Again, for the purpose of section 5, the
20allegation that I bend history in favour of Hitler because
21I am said to admire him, and that I consort with other
22people holding such views, is a very different kettle of
23fish from stating, as the Defendants do, that I consort
24with people who are widely regarded as violent and
26 I continue now from the bottom of the page:
1 My Lord, the Court will be aware from the very
2outset I argued that this hearing should not, effectively,
3leave the four walls of my study, where I wrote my books;
4and that what actually happened 50 or 60 years ago was of
5less moment to the issues as pleaded. The matter at
6issue, as pleaded by the Defendants, is not what happened,
7but what I knew of it, and what I made of it, at the time
8I put pen to paper. We had some argument on that matter,
9my Lord. To take crude example: neglecting to use the
10Eichmann memoirs, releases to us only a few days ago, had
11they contained startling revelations - which they did not
12- could not have been held against me because they were
13not available to me in the 1960s, 1970s or 1980s. But
14your Lordship took a different view and I respectfully
15submit that it was wrong.
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY: May I interrupt you again? I do not think
17that is right. I think everybody agrees that the Eichmann
18memoirs, because they have surfaced so late, really have
19no bearing on this trial at all.
20 MR IRVING: I gave that as a particularly crude example of why
21what mattered was what happened in the walls of my study
22as I wrote, what was on my desk, so to speak, and not what
24 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I see.
25 MR IRVING: Your Lordship took a different view, and
26I respectfully submit that it was wrong. The Defendants
1have invested a sizeable fortune in reresearching the
2Holocaust, and possibly for that reason we have all been
3dragged through that vast and inhuman tragedy yet again,
4because of the money spent on it now, and again quite
5needlessly, in my submission. It would have sufficed for
6their purposes if they could have proved, on the basis of
7the total disclose of my files which I made to them and
8their experts, that I had indeed "distorted, misstated,
9misquoted and falsified", their words. Fearing or
10finding, however, that they were unable to prove wilful
11fraud, in effect, in my submission, they have fallen back
12on the alternative plea in the tort of negligence: that
13"Mr Irving ought to have known". I respectfully submit
14that this unsettle change of defence should not have been
15allowed to them, it should not have been available to
16them, as it was not pleaded at the outset. It has to be
17specifically pleaded, in my submission, my Lord, at the
19 If my submission on the law is, however, wrong,
20then your Lordship must ask what effort would have been
21reasonable on the part of an individual historian, acting
22without institutional support like that of Yad Vashem, and
23with the doors of the archives increasingly being slammed
24against him because of the activities of the bodies to
25which I shall shortly refer. What it would have been
26reasonable to expect me to do to find out what happened?
1These Defendants have reportedly spent some $6 million,
2and 20 man-years or more, in researching this case: this
3blinding and expensive spotlight has been focused on the
4narrowest of issues, yet it has still generated more noise
5than illumination. I heard the expert witnesses who were
6paraded before us use phrases like the "consensus of
7expert opinion" as their source so often - in fact, I did
8a check, the word "consensus" occurs 40 times in the daily
9transcripts of this trial - that I began to wonder what
10the archives were for. I suggest that these experts were
11more expert in reporting each other's opinions and those
12of people who agree with them than in what the archives
13actually contain and what they do not contain which is
15 The phrase "Holocaust denier", which the Second
16Defendant boasts of having invented, is an Orwellian
17stigma. It is not a very helpful phrase. It does not
18diminish or extend thought or knowledge on this tragic
19subject. Its universal adoption within the space of a few
20years by media, academia government and even academics
21seems to indicate something of the international endeavour
22of which I shall shortly make brief mention. It is, in my
23submission, a key to the whole case. Perhaps this court
24should raise its gaze briefly from the red and blue files
25and bundles that are around the court room of documents
26for a brief moment, and re-read George Orwell's appendix
1to "1984", which seems very relevant to this case.
2 From the witness box, with its revelations of
3the "consensus of opinion", and "moral certainty", and the
4mass male voice choir of the "social sciences" that we
5heard about from Professor Funke, on which the Defendant's
6German expert, Professor Hajo Funke, relies for his
7certainty, his certainty, as to what is right-wing
8extremism, we seem hear more than a vague echo of
9Orwellian Newspeak -- a language that moulds minds, and
10destroys reputations and livelihoods.
11 Orwell was wrong in one point: he thought it
12would take the forces of the State to impose Newspeak:
13Professor Lipstadt and her reckless publishers Penguin
14Books Limited -- I shall justify that adjective -- have
15sought to impose it through the machinery of the literary
16and media establishments. Only the Royal Courts of
17Justice here in London, independent and proud, can protect
18the rights of the individual from now on. And those
19rights include the right, as Lord Justice Sedley recently
20put it in another Court in this building, of any person to
21hold to, and to preach, unpopular views, perhaps even
22views that many might find repellent.
23 My Lord, I have not hesitated myself to stand
24here in the witness box and to answer questions.
25Mr Rampton rose to the occasion, and he, or indeed I, may
26yet regret it. Your Lordship will recall that, when
1I brought a somewhat reluctant and even curmudgeonly
2Professor Donald Watt, who is not the Professor
3I mentioned earlier incidentally, doyen of the diplomatic
4historians, into the witness box, he used these words:
5 "I must say, I hope that I am never subjected
6to the kind of examination that Mr Irving's books have
7been subjected to by the defence witnesses. I have a very
8strong feeling that there are other senior historical
9figures, including some to whom I owed a great deal of my
10own career, whose work would not stand up, or not all of
11whose work would stand up, to this kind of examination".
12 I am not throwing myself on the charity of this
13court, my Lord, but I am asking that the court should be
14reasonable in the standards that it sets. That
15effectively is a line that Professor Watt has supported me
16in. It is fair to say, of course, that I had to subpoena
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I am aware.
19 MR IRVING: When I invited him to mention some names, of
20course, he declined. What he was saying was that whatever
21mistakes or whatever unconventional interpretations of
22mine, the Defendants have revealed with their
23multi-million dollar research, and I am going to admit
24some mistakes that I have made, not many, this does not
25invalidate me as an historian, or my historical methods
1 Your Lordship will find that Professor Watt
2continued by suggesting that simply by facing the
3challenge of the views that I had put forward, "and basing
4them on historical research rather than idealogical
5conviction," this had resulted in other historians
6devoting an "enormous burst of research" to the Nazi
7massacres of the Jews, an area which can now in
8consequence support journals and conferences. He said,
9"This, I think, is a direct result of the challenge which
10Mr Irving's work posed and the consistency and the effort
11which he has put into maintaining it in public". In other
12words, I forced the others to do their homework finally at
13last. In other words, Watt stated that, far from being a
14Holocaust denier, my work has directly increased
15historical research into, and the understanding of, the
17 The German Professor Eberhard Jaeckel made the
18same controversial -- and he is no friend of mine, of
19course -- point in his essay in the book published by the
20Us Holocaust Memorial Museum a year or two ago, namely
21that before my book Hitler's War was published in 1977,
22the first edition, there had been virtually no meaningful
23research into the tragedy at all. Professor Hans Mommsen,
24Professor Raul Hilberg, Professor Gordon C Craig, these
25and many others have more or less supported my claim to be
26regarded as a serious historian. I of course say things
1like that with the utmost personal distaste. I do not
2believe in blowing my own trumpet. The outcome of my
3research, my books, and my speaking is therefore that
4people in general are more, and not less, aware of the
5horrors of the Holocaust, and they are certainly better
7 One of the most damaging accusations which Mr
8Rampton has repeated again this morning, is that I, the
9plaintiff, driven by my obsession with Hitler, distort,
10manipulate and falsify history in order to put Hitler in a
11more favourable light, thereby demonstrating a lack of the
12detachment, rationality and judgment necessary for an
14 I submit that, in assessing whether I am an
15historian who "distorts, manipulates and falsifies" your
16Lordship should give most weight to my avowedly historical
17written works. Your Lordship will be thoroughly aware of
18why I am saying this. I suggested my speeches, very
19occasional lapses of taste in them, lapses of taste
20Mr Rampton has identified and mentioned repeatedly,
21I think three altogether, are relevant purely as
22background material. Of those written historical works,
23I submit that your Lordship give most weight to my
24flagship work Hitler's War. I ask that your Lordship read
25(again, if your Lordship has already done so) the
26introduction to the 1991 edition. This was published well
1after the year when the Defendants (wrongly) assert that
2I "flipped over" to become what they call a Holocaust
4 I have always differed from my colleagues in my
5profession in insisting on using original documents,
6including where possible the authors' drafts of books or
7memoirs rather than the heavily edited West German
8editions, later rewritings, or posthumous adaptations. I
9also make use of many more unpublished original documents
10than my historian colleagues, in my belief. In the 1960s
11and 1970s, I must add, of course, that was much more
12difficult than it is today.
13 I differ too from others, in making copies- and
14I am going to emphasise this quite a lot- of the original
15documents which I unearth freely available to others
16as soon as my own works are complete, and in fact often
17before that time, as the panne, the accident, the mishap
18which Professor Harold Deutsch's book showed. Your
19Lordship will remember that Harold Deutsch got there first
20and used it before me, and I was accused of plageurising
21his book, because I gave him the materials before I used
22them. As page 14 of Hitler's War shows, I donate these
23records regularly to publicly accessible archives and
24I also make them available on microfilm. There are nearly
25200 such microfilms in my records, nearly half a million
26pages. I also devote time to corresponding with and
1assisting other historians and researchers. If,
2therefore -- this is the important point -- some of my
3interpretations are controversial, I also do all that is
4possible to let other people judge for themselves. This
5speaks strongly against the accusation, levelled against
6me again today by Mr Rampton, that I distort, manipulate
7and falsify history.
8 On Hitler and the Holocaust I wrote these words,
9and this is in the 1991 edition, after the time when
10I supposedly became a denier obsessed with Hitler and with
12 Page 2: My conclusions ... startled even me.
13Hitler was a far less omnipotent Fuhrer than had been
14believed, his methods and tactics were profoundly
16 Page 4: ... the more hermetically Hitler locked
17himself away behind the barbed wire and mine fields of his
18remote military headquarters, the more his Germany became
19a Fuhrer Staat without a Fuhrer. Domestic policy was
20controlled by whoever was most powerful in each sector -
21by Goring, Lammers, Bormann, Himmler.
22 Page 17: If this biography were simply a
23history of the rise and fall of Hitler's Reich, it would
24be legitimate to conclude "Hitler killed the Jews". He
25had after all created the atmosphere of hatred with his
26speeches in the 1930s; he and Himmler had created the SS;
1his speeches, though never explicit, left the clear
2impression that "liquidate" what was he meant.
3 At pages 17 to 18: For a full length war
4biography, I wrote, I felt that a more analytical approach
5to the key questions of initiative, complicity and
6execution would be necessary. Remarkably, I found that
7Hitler's own role in the "Final Solution", whatever that
8was, had never been examined.
9 At page 38: Every document actually linking
10Hitler with the treatment of the Jews invariably takes the
11form of an embargo, and I maintain that position, despite
12everything we have heard for the last two months.
13 This is the famous "chain of documents", of
14course, notwithstanding everything we have heard in court,
15I still adhere to this position.
16 At page 19 it is plausible to impute to him, to
17Hitler, that not uncommon characteristic of heads of
18state, a conscious desire "not to know", what the
19Americans now call, I believe, plausible deniability. But
20the proof of this of course is beyond the powers of a
22 At page 21 I write: ... dictatorships are
23fundamentally weak ... I concluded, the burden of guilt
24for the bloody and mindless massacres of the Jews rests on
25a large number of Germans (and non-Germans), many of them
26alive today and not just on one "mad dictator", whose
1order had to be obeyed without question.
2 The similarity with the thesis propagated by
3Dr Daniel Goldhagen of the University of Harvard in his
4worldwide best seller book, "Hitler's Willing
5Executioners", will surely strike everybody in this
6court. I am saying the burden falls on a large number of
7Germans and not just on that one madman's. Note the word
8"just". I do not say "not on the madman", I say not just
10 Allow me to rub this point in: What I actually
11wrote and printed and published in my flagship study
12Hitler's War was that Hitler was clearly responsible for
13the Holocaust both by virtue of being head of state and by
14having done so much by his speeches and organisation to
15start it off.
16 Where I differed from many historians was in
17denying that there was any documentary proof of detailed
18direction and initiation of the mass murders by Hitler,
19and I am glad to say two months in that respect has not
20brought us any closer. The view was considered to be
21heretical at the time. But this lack of wartime
22documentary evidence for Hitler's involvement is now
23widely accepted. Indeed, on the narrower matter of the
24lack of wartime documentary evidence on the gas chambers,
25your Lordship was already good enough to grant as follows
26in an exchange between your Lordship and myself and
2 I said: If his Lordship is led to believe by a
3careless statement of the witnesses that there is a vast
4body of wartime documents, namely about gas chambers, this
5would be unfair, would it not, because you, Professor
6Evans, are not referring to wartime documents, you are
7referring to postwar documents?
8 Professor Evans at this point replies: I am
9referring to all kinds of documents.
10 I insist, this is me: You are not referring to
12 Evans says: I am referring to documents
13including wartime documents, the totality of the written
14evidence for the Holocaust which you deny.
15 Irving then says: Are you saying there is a
16vast quantity of wartime documents?
17 You see, I am a bit persistent on this matter.
18 Evans says: What I am saying is that there is a
19vast quantity of documents and material for all aspects of
21 At this point your Lordship was good enough to
22say: I expect you would accept, Professor Evans, just to
23move on, the number of overtly incriminating documents,
24wartime documents, as regarding gas chambers is actually
25pretty few and far between?
26 That is how it was left.
1 To summarise, in Hitler's War I differed from
2the other historians in suggesting that the actual mass
3murders were not all or mainly initiated by Hitler.
4I pointed out that my sources were consistent with another
5explanation: A conscious desire "not to know" (a kind of
6Richard Nixon kind of complex) to which I referred, I
7believe, on three occasions during the hearings here.
8 I submit that I have not distorted, manipulated
9and falsified. I have put all the cards on table; I made
10the documents available to all comers, on microfilm and in
11the archives, and I have pointed to various possible
13 I further submit that, while certainly "selling"
14my views, I have been much less manipulated that those
15historians, including some whom you heard in this court,
16my Lord, whose argument has an important part been simply
17this -- that I ought not to be heard, because my views are
18too outlandish or extreme. Disgracefully, these scholars
19cleared from the sidelines as I have outlawed, arrested
20harassed, and all but "vernichtet" destroyed as a
21professional historian; and they have put pressure on
22British publishers to destroy my works. This is a
23reference to MacMillan Limited, to which we will come
25 To assist your Lordship in deciding how
26outlandish and extreme these views of mine are, I allow
1myself to quote from AJP Taylor's The War Lords, published
2by Penguin -- the First Defendants in this action -- in
3London in 1978. Of Adolf Hitler Taylor wrote.
5 "... it was at this time that he became really a recluse, settling down in an
6 underground bunker, running the war from the front. (at pages 55-57).
8 Precisely same kind of image I generated from my
11 "He was a solitary man, though he sometimes accepted, of course, advice from
12 others, sometimes decisions [my emphasis]. [he accepted decisions from others] It is,
13 I think, true, for instance, that the terrible massacre of the Jews".
15 This is AJP Taylor who "was inspired more by
16Himmler than by Hitler, though Hitler took it up". (At
18 These quotations are from the foreword of AJP
19Taylor's own flagship work, The Origins of the Second
20World War, published in 1963:
22 "Little can be discovered so long as we go on attributing everything that happened
23 to Hitler. He supplied a powerful dynamic element, but it was fuel to an existing
24 machine... [later on he writes] He have counted for nothing without the support and
25 co-operation of the German people. It seems to be believed nowadays that Hitler did
26 everything himself, even driving the trains and filling the gas chambers unaided. This
1 was not so. Hitler was a sounding-board for the German nation. Thousands. Many hundred
2 thousand, Germans carried out his evil orders without qualm or question."
4 What I wrote, with less felicity of style than
5Professor Taylor, was a reasonable interpretation of the
6information available to me at the time. I might add that
7my words are often accepted, quoted, and echoed by other
8historians far more eminent than me. (including the
9government's Official Historians like Professor Frank
10Hinsley, in his volumes on British intelligence) who
11specifically footnotes and references my works. Some may
12regard my interpretations as not the most probable. But
13they are never perverse. For the Defendants to describe me
14as one who manipulates, distorts, and falsifies it would
15be necessary for them to satisfy your Lordship that
16I wilfully adopted perverse and ridiculous
17interpretations. But I have not and they have not
18satisfied your Lordship either, I submit.
19 The Defendants' historiographical criticisms
20 I now turn to some of the particular matters
21which exercised your Lordship, in the list of points at
23 As a preamble I would say that I trust your
24Lordship will be bear in mind that the task facing an
25historian of my type -- what I refer to as a "shirtsleeve
26historian", a shirtsleeve historian working in the field,
1from original records -- is very different from the task
2facing the scholar or academic who sits in a book-lined
3study, plucking handy works of reference from his shelves,
4printed in large type, translated into English, provided
5with easy indices and often with nice illustrations too.
6 Your Lordship will recall that while researching
7the Goebbels Diaries in Moscow for the first week in June
81992 I had to read those wartime Nazi glass microfiches
9plates through a magnifier the size of a nailclipper, with
10a lens smaller than a pea. The Court will appreciate that
11reading even post-war microfilm of often poorly reproduced
12original documents on a mechanical reader is tedious, time
13consuming, and an unrewarding business. Your Lordship
14will be familiar with the reason why I saying this. There
15were certain matters which we dealt with. Notes have to be
16taken in handwriting when are you sitting at a reader.
17There are no "pages" to be xeroxed. In the 1960s xerox
18copies were nothing like as good as they are now, as your
19Lordship will have noticed from the blue-bound volumes
20brought in here from my own document archives. Mistakes
21undoubtedly occur: the mis-transcription of difficult
22German words pencilled in Gothic or Sutterlin-style
23handwriting, a script which most modern German scholars
24find unreadable anyway; mistakes of copying are made;
25mistakes of omission (i.e. a passage is not transcribed
26when you are sitting at the screen because at the time it
1appears of no moment). These are innocent mistakes, and
2with a book the size of Hitler's War which currently runs
3to 393,000 words, they are not surprising.
4 Your Lordship may recall another exchange I had
5with Professor Evans: may I emphasise here that there is
6no personal animus from me towards Professor Evans at all.
7I thought he gave his evidence admirably.
8 IRVING: Professor Evans, when your researchers
9were researching in my files at the Institute of History
10in Munich, did they come across a file there which was
11about 1,000 pages long, consisting of the original
12annotated footnotes of Hitler's War which were referenced
13by a number to a every single sentence in that book?
14 ANSWER: No.
15 IRVING: It was not part of the original corpus,
16it was part of the original manuscript, but it was chopped
17out because of the length.
18 EVANS: No, we did not see that.
19 IRVING: Have you seen isolated pages of that in
20my diary (sic) in so far as it relates to episodes which
21were of interest, like the Reichskristallnacht?
22 EVANS: No, I do not to be honest, recall, but
23that does not mean to say that we have not seen them.
24 IRVING: You say my footnotes are opaque
25because they do not always give the page reference. Do you
26agree that, on a page which we are going to come across in
1the course of this morning, of your own expert report, you
2put a footnote in just saying "see Van Pelt's report", and
3that expert report is 769 pages long, is it not?
4 So from this exchange it is plain that I was not
5just a conjurer producing quotations in my books,
6producing quotations and documents out of a hat; I made my
7sources and references available in their totality to
8historians, even when they were not printed in the book.
9 The allegation that the mistakes are
10deliberate -- that they are manipulations, or
11distortions -- is a foul one to make, and easily disposed
12of by general considerations, which I ask your Lordship to
13pay particular attention to. If I intended deliberately
14to mistranscribe a handwritten word or text on which the
15defence places such reliance, I would hardly on the
16deliberate nature of the mistranscription, I would hardly
17have furnished copies of the original text to my critics,
18or published the text of the handwritten document as a
19facsimile in the same work (for example, the famous
20November 30th 1941 note, which is illustrated as a
21facsimile in all editions of Hitler's War); nor would
22I have placed the entire collection of such documents
23without restriction in archives commonly frequented by my
25 If I intended to mistranslate a document, would
26I have encouraged the publication of the resulting book,
1with the correct original quotation in the German
2language, where my perversion of the text would easily
3have been discovered? Yet like all my other works both,
4Hitler and Goebbels have appeared in German language
5editions with a full and correct transcription of the
6controversial texts. Is that the action of a deliberate
8 As for the general allegation that the errors of
9exaggeration or distortions that were made were "all" of a
10common alignment, designed to exonerate or exculpate Adolf
11Hitler, the test which I submit your Lordship must apply
12should surely be this: if the sentence that is complained
13of be removed from the surrounding paragraph or text (and
14in each book there are only one or two such sentences of
15which this wounding claim is made) does this in any way
16alter the book's general thrust, or the weight of the
17argument that is made?
18 An example of this test is the wrong weight
19which I gave to the contents of the 1.20 am telegram
20issued by SS-Gruppenfuhrer Reinhard Heydrich on
21Kristallnacht. I think Mr Rampton referred to that this
22morning. It is a famous telegram, printed in the Nuremberg
23volumes, five pages long or so. Would such an error have
24been committed wilfully by me, given the risk that it
25would inevitably be exposed? Is it not far more likely on
26the balance of probabilities that in the process of
1writing and rewriting, and of cutting and of cutting and
2condensing, the Goebbels manuscript, the author, that is
3me, gradually over the eight years lost sight of the full
4content and the thrust of the original document? Your
5Lordship should know, if not then I say so now, that that
6book witness through five successive drafts and retypes
7over eight years, filling eventually four archives boxes,
8a total of eight cubic feet of manuscript, all of which I
9disclosed to the Defendants by way of discovery. St
10Martin's Press, my American publishers, particularly asked
11that these early chapters of the book should be trimmed
12back in length.
13 These general considerations disposed of the
14defence arguments on the "Policeman Hoffman" evidence as
15rendered in the 1924 Hitler treason trial. For the
16limited purposes of writing a biography of -- my Lord,
17these are points you have asked me to address specifically
18in your list of issues. I say that because those who
19listen to Mr Rampton's speech will not have heard them
20referred to and may be puzzled as to why I am addressing
21them. For the limited purposes of writing a biography of
22Hermann Goring -- not of Hitler -- I relied on the
23thousands of typescript microfilmed pages of the
24transcript of this trial. So far as I know, nobody had
25ever used them before me at that time. Now the handy,
26printed, bound, indexed, cross-referenced edition, which
1Professor Evans drew upon had not appeared at that time.
2The printed edition appeared in 1988, two years ago.
3Eleven years after my Goring biography was published. In
4other words, even more years after I wrote it by Macmillan
5Limited. I extracted -- with difficulty -- from the
6microfilmed pages of the original transcript the material
7I needed relating to Hitler and Goring and I was not
8otherwise interested in that man Hofmann at all. I do not
9consider the printed volume on the trial which is now
10available shows that I made meaningful errors, if so, they
11certainly were not deliberate.
12 The Kristallnacht in November 1938 is a more
13difficult episode in every way. I do not mean in that
14sense, my Lord, that it is difficult for me personally.
15It is a difficult episode to reconstruct from the material
16available to us. As said, I clearly made an error over
17the content (and reference number) of the 1.20 a.m.
18telegram from Heydrich. It was an innocent error. It was
19a glitch of the kind that occurs in the process of
20redrafting a manuscript several times over the years. The
21Court must not overlook that by the time was completed in
221994 and 1995 and as I described in the introduction to
23that book, Goebbels, the Mastermind of the Third Reich, by
24that time I had been forcefully severed from both my own
25collection of documents in German institutions and from
26the German Federal archives in Koblenz. On July 1st 1993,
1my Lord when I attended the latter archives in Koblenz
2explicitly for the purpose of tidying up loose ends on the
3Goebbels manuscript, I was formally banned from the
4building in the interests of the German people I was told,
5for ever on orders of the minister of the interior -- that
6is one of the gravest blows that has been struck at me in
7my submission by this international endeavour to which
8I shall shortly refer.
9 The allegation of the Defendants in connection
10with the Kristallnacht is that in order to "exonerate
11Hitler" I effectively concocted or invented, a false
12version of events on that night, namely that Adolf Hitler
13intervened between 1 and 2 a.m. in order to halt the
14madness. I think that is a fair summary of the charge
15against me. I submit that their refusal to accept this,
16my version, is ingrained in their own political
17attitudes. There is evidence both in the archives and in
18the reliable contemporary records like Ulrich von Hassell,
19the diaries of von Hassell, Alfred Rosenberg and Hellmuth
20Groscurth, and in the independent testimonies. By which I
21mean independent from each other, testimonies of those
22participants whom I myself carefully questioned, or whose
23private papers I obtained -- I mention here Nicolaus von
24Below, Hitler's adjutant. Another adjutant, Bruckner,
25Julius Schaub, Karl Wolff and others -- which the Court
26has seen, to justify the versions which I rendered. It
1therefore was not an invented story. It may well be that
2my critics were unfamiliar with the sources that I used
3before they made their criticisms. The dishonesty lies
4not with me, for printing the "inside" story of Hitler's
5actions that night, as far as we can reconstruct them
6using these and other sources; but with those scholars who
7have studiously ignored them, and in particular the Rudolf
8Hess "stop arson" telegram of 2.56 am, which was
9issued "on orders from the highest level", which the
10Defendants' scholars are agreed or testified is a
11reference to Hitler.
12 Your Lordship may well have marvelled to hear
13the Defendants' witnesses dismiss this message from Rudolf
14Hess -- like the Schlegelberger Document, referred to
15later -- as being of no consequence.
16 The Kristallnacht diaries of Dr Goebbels, which
17I obtained in Moscow in 1992, some years after I first
18drafted the episode for my biography, substantially bore
19out my version of events, in my submission, namely that he
20and not Hitler was the prime instigator, and that Hitler
21was largely unaware and displeased by what came about, or
22by the scale of what came about, would be a fairer way to
23put that. Your Lordship will recall that Professor
24Phillippe Burrin, a Swiss Holocaust historian for whom all
25the witnesses expressed respect when questioned by me,
26comes to the same conclusion independently of me. Now he
1(and I have given the quotation at the foot of page).
2Now, he is manifestly not a "Holocaust denier" either.
3The Court will also recall that the witness Professor
4Evans admitted that unlike myself he had not read all
5through the available Goebbels Diaries. It is a massive
6task. A mammoth task. He had not had the time, he said,
7and we must confess a certain sympathy with that
8position -- for an academic, time is certainly at a
9premium. But reading all of the available Goebbels
10Diaries is however necessary, in order to establish and
11recognize the subterfuges which this Nazi minister used
12throughout his career as diarist, in order to conceal when
13he was creating what I call alibis for his own wayward and
15 I drew attention to this historiographical
16conundrum several times in the book, my Goebbels
17biography, the fact that Goebbels Diaries were not
18trustworthy. I discussed both in my scientific annotated
19German language edition of the 1938 diaries and in my full
20Goebbels biography which your Lordship has read, a
21characteristic example from this same year, 1938, although
22the one episode which most deeply harrowed and unsettled
23him that year was his affair with the Czech actress, Lida
24Baarova, an affair which drove him to the brink of
25resignation, divorce, and even suicide, neither her name
26nor any of those events figures explicitly in the diary at
1all, unless the pages be read particularly closely, when
2certain clues can be seen. That is an example ...
3 The Goebbels diary is sometimes a very deceitful
4document; it must be recognized as such and treated very
5gingerly indeed. It is the diary of a liar, a
6propagandist. The fact that it was evidently written up
7not one, but two or even three days later, after the
8Kristallnacht episode, calls for additional caution in
9relying on it for chronology and content.
10 My Lord, your Lordship will notice that I have
11not dealt specifically with the number of the issues you
12put in your list. I hope your Lordship does not take
13umbrage with that, but I felt that I dealt with them
14adequately in my cross-examination.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is entirely a matter for you.
16 MR IRVING: If this was wrong of me then all I can say is
17culpa mea (sic) but I now continue with the various
18narratives of the Nazi shooting of the Jews in the East.
19 There is little dispute between the parties on
20what actually happened in my view. This is the shootings
21of the Jews in the East by the Nazis and their
22collaborators. There is little dispute between the
23parties on what actually happened in my view, and your
24Lordship is aware that I have given these atrocities due
25and proper attention in the various biographies I have
26written; I however add the one caveat, that they are not
1intended to be reference works on the Holocaust, but just
3 I believe that I was the first historian
4anywhere in the world to discover and make use of the
5CSDIC reports relating further details to these killings,
6particularly the Bruns Report, and I made these reports
7available to many other historians. I should explain to
8the people who are not familiar with them that these CSDIC
9reports are eavesdropping reports on Nazi prisoners that
10we British made using hidden microphones. It took -- it
11takes many days to read them. There are thousands and
12thousands of pages in these files. Over the last twenty
13years I have read these horrifying narratives out
14repeatedly to public audiences, they describe the killings
15of the Jews in the most horrifying detail, including
16"right-wing" audiences. This fact alone entitles me to
17express my contempt at those who would describe me as a
19 We have seen the Defendants scrabbling around at
20the end of the Bruns Report for its seizing on its
21third-hand reference by this SS murderer and braggart in
22Riga, Altemeyer, to an "order" that he claimed to have
23received to carry out such mass shootings more
24circumspectly in future. But we know from the late 1941
25police decodes -- we British were reading the SS and
26police messages passing between Berlin and the front. We
1know from the late 1941 police decodes, which is a much
2firmer source-document in my view than a snatch of
3conversation remembered years later, in April 1945, we
4know precisely what orders had gone from Hitler's
5headquarters, radioed by Himmler himself to the SS mass
6murderer, SS Obergruppenfuhrer Friedrich Jeckeln, stating
7explicitly that these killings exceeded the authority that
8had been given by himself, Himmler, and by the
9Reichsssicherheitshauptamp (the RSHA). We know that the
10killing of all German Jews stopped at once, for many
11months upon the receipt of that message. When I first
12translated the word "Judentransport" a word which I
13emphasise again can mean "transportation of the Jews", as
14"transports of Jews", in the plural, in the 1970s, being
15unaware of the surrounding context of data which helps now
16to narrow down the purport to the one Riga-bound trainload
17from Berlin. I was thus inadvertently coming closer to
18the truth, not further from it; because the liquidation of
19all the trainloads from Germany was halted next day,
20December 1st 1941, by the order radioed from Hitler's
21headquarters (whether initiated by Himmler or Hitler seems
22hair-splitting in this context).
23 As I stated under cross-examination, I did not
24see the Schulz-Dubois document when I wrote my books and
25I have not seen it since; having now read Professor Gerald
26Fleming tells us about it, I confess that I would be
1unlikely to attach the same importance as does learned
2counsel for the Defendants, to what the famously anti-Nazi
3Abwehr Chief Wilhelm Canaris allegedly told Lieutenant
4Schulz-Dubois of Hitler's reaction. The British decodes of
5the SS signals, to which I introduced the Court, and the
6subsequent events (the actual cessation for many months of
7the liquidation of German Jews) in my submission speak
9 Your Lordship asked in your list of questions
10for my comments on the reference in Hitler's table talk of
11October 25th 1941. Well, your Lordship is familiar with
12the Defendants' argument and with mine. My extract from
13this document which I used was based originally on the
14original Weidenfeld translation, in fact, I used the
15original Weidenfeld translation into English, as is well
16known, in disagreement with the Defendants' experts I
17still maintain and others have followed me in this
18(notably Professor Phillippe Burrin, who translates
19Schrecken as "the ominous reputation") in that context,
20that the appropriate translation here for the word
21"schrecken" is indeed "rumour" and not "terror", a word
22which makes for a wooden and uncouth translation anyway.
23 Ladies and gentlemen, it will make no sense,
24unfortunately, this passage, unless you see the document.
25A relevant passage from the SS Event Report from
26activities in the rear of the eastern front, dated
1September 11, 1941 front (provided by the Defendants),
2shows that this is precisely what was meant: "The rumour
3that all Jews are being shot by the Germans had a salutary
4effect". The Jews were now fleeing before the Germans
5arrived. The rumour! To accuse me of wilful
6mistranslation and even worse distortion when (a) I used
7the original (sic) Weidenfeld translation, not at that
8time having received the original German from Switzerland,
9and (b) the word "rumour" gives precisely the nuance, the
10correct nuance that the surrounding history shows the word
11was meant to have, this accusation seems to me an
12excessively harsh judgment on my expertise.
13 The next in line is the Goebbels diary entry for
14November 22nd, 194: Again, I just pick out what seems to
15matter to me in that particular entry here, for the
16purposes of today's submissions.
17 This diary entry, my Lord, includes a fair
18example of how dishonest the reporting by Goebbels was
19when it comes to his meetings with Hitler. He records
20"the exceptional praise" of Hitler for the weekly
21newsreel produced by his ministry, the propaganda
22ministry; in fact Hitler was forever criticising this very
23product of the Goebbels ministry, as the diary of
24Rosenberg shows. Goebbels then continues, here is the
25quote: "With regard to the Jewish problem too the Fuhrer
26completely agrees with my views. He wants an energetic
1policy against the Jews, but one however that does not
2cause us needless difficulties." Goebbels diary entry
3continues: "The evacuation of the Jews is to be done city
4by city". So it is still not fixed when Berlin's turn
5comes; but when it does, "the evacuation should be carried
6out as fast as possible". In other words, he had not got
7his way. He had been agitating once again that the
8evacuation should start but Hitler had not come into line.
9"Still not fixed when Berlin's time comes". Hitler then
10expressed the need for "a somewhat reserved approach" in
11question of mixed marriages -- that is marriages between
12Jews and non-Jews. What do you do with them? Are you going
13to keep them in Germany or deport them? Hitler's view was
14the marriages would die out anyway by and by, and they
15should not go grey worrying about it.
16 Now I have suggested that on the balance of
17probabilities Hitler was alluding to the public unrest
18when he said he wanted a policy that does not cause us
19needless difficulties. I have suggested on a balance of
20probabilities Hitler was alluding to the public unrest
21caused by the suicide a few days earlier of the popular
22actor Joachim Gottschalk and his family. Apart from
23"needless" becoming "endless", in an irritating typo
24which hardly amounts to manipulation, in other words, in
25the original German, the original translation started off
26as "causing us needless difficulties", which is correct,
1and somehow it became "endless difficulties" is an
2irritating typo which hardly amounts to "manipulation".
3This passage bears out what I have always said of Hitler.
4While Goebbels was the eternal agitator, as witness his
5anti-Semitic leading article published in Das Reich only a
6few days before, November 16th 1941, Hitler was (even by
7Goebbels own account) for a reserved approach towards the
8Jewish problems; and he was doing so, even as the
9trainloads of Jews were heading eastwards from Bremen and
10Berlin, for example to the conquered Russian territories
11and the Baltic states. Your Lordship will not need
12reminding of the curious British decodes, which revealed
13the provisioning of the deportation trains with tonnes of
14foods for the journey. These are messages which we
15British decoded, which reveal the provisioning of the
16deportation trainloads of Jews with tonnes of food for the
17journey, stocks of many weeks food for after they arrived
18and even deportees' appliances, "Gerat", appliances. So
19the evacuation at this time evidently meant just that to
20very many Reich officials, and no more.
21 My Lord ----
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Press on. Let us get as far as the
23Schlegelberger document, shall we, on the next page.
24 MR IRVING: Jolly good, yes, good point.
25 Mr Rampton went to some effort and expense to
26suggest that I suppressed vital information from the newly
1discovered Goebbels diary, December 13th 1941. In this
2day's entry Goebbels reported on various things and he
3reported on Hitler's rhetoric to the Gauleiters, speaking
4on December 12th 1941 in Berlin, the Nazi governors.
5Anybody who is as familiar as I am with Hitler's speeches,
6and with Goebbels' diary entries relating to be them will
7effortlessly recognize this entire passage as being usual
8the Hitler gramophone record about his famous 1939
9"prophecy". It was part of his stock repertoire when
10speaking to the Party old guard -- they had carried him
11into power, the Party old guard had carried him into power
12and they expected to hear from him that he had not
13abandoned the hallowed Party programme. I can understand
14the temptation for the younger generation of scholars,
15unfamiliar with Hitler's rhetoric, to fall greedily upon
16such freshly discovered morsels as though they were the
17answer to the great Holocaust mystery: None of the
18witnesses to whom this item was put by myself, or by
19counsel for the Defendants, was able to identify any part
20of this passage which was out of the ordinary for Hitler.
21 Even if I had read that far on that day's glass
22plate in the Moscow archives, and even if I had seen those
23lines of diary entries, some 20 pages after the page where
24I in fact stopped reading for that that day -- and I must
25emphasise again that I did not read that far on that day
26because that did not come within my remit, I doubt that
1I would have attached any significance to them other than
2adding this list to the occasions -- adding this entry to
3the list of occasions on which Hitler harked back, for
4whatever reason, to his famous "prophecy" of 1939.
5 I have read again the printed version of the
6meeting of the generalgouvernenent, the Polish
7authorities, the German occupation authorities in Poland,
8Hans Frank, on December 16th 1941. It is significant to
9see the amount of space taken, even in this abridged
10published version, by the typhus epidemic sweeping through
11the region, the climax of which was expected to come in
12April 1942. Hans Frank states that he has begun
13negotiation with the purpose of deporting the Jews to the
14East, and he mentions the big Heydrich conference which is
15set down for January 1942 on this topic in Berlin. Then
16comes the sentence which pulls the rug out from beneath
17the Defendant's feet, in my submission: Hans Frank
18says: "For us the Jews are exceptionally damaging mouths
19to feed. We've got an estimated 2.5 million here in the
20Generalgouvernement, perhaps 3.5 million Jews now, what
21with all their kinfolk and hangers-on. We cannot shoot
22these 3.5 million Jews, we cannot poison them, but we will
23be able to do something with them which somehow or other
24will have the result of destroying them, in fact, in
25conjunction with the grander measures still to be
26discussed at Reich level". I think that is a fair
1translation of that passage.
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is not complete, but it is fair.
3 MR IRVING: Ah, your Lordship says it is not complete. This is
4an extract taken from a seven or eight page printed
6 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, it is what Frank says he was told in
7Berlin that I think perhaps is not there, but, anyway,
9 MR IRVING: I would -- well, I will press on. The December
1018th 1941 diary entry by Himmler reads, this is the diary
11entry made by Himmler, it is an agenda for his meeting
12with Hitler on December 18th 1941, Himmler jotted down the
13words "Judenfrage", Jewish question, and next to that in
14German the words "als partisanen auszurotten", Himmler
15had, as I pointed out to the Court, repeatedly referred in
16earlier documents to the phrase "Juden als Partisanen".
17This was nothing new or sensational therefore, and the
18words he was recording were, in my submission, not
19necessarily Hitler's but more probably his own stereotype
20phrase. The correct pedantic translation, is in any
21case "Jewish problem, to be wiped out as being
22partisans". Not "like partisans", which would have been
23"wie partisanen". There can be no equivocating about
24this translation of "als". Wie is a comparison, als is an
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think that probably is a convenient
1moment. 2 o'clock.
2 (Luncheon adjournment)
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Schlegelberger, Mr Irving.
4 MR IRVING: Before Schlegelberger, my Lord, on December 16th
51941, there was a meeting in Poland which Hans Frank
6referred to discussions he had in Berlin, in the course of
7which he said in Berlin the people asked us ----
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Liquidate them yourselves, something like
9that, was it not?
10 MR IRVING: He said to the people in Berlin: "Imagine that we
11are housing these people in nice little housing estates
12here in the Baltic, in the Eastern territories. We tell
13them we cannot handle it here, liquidate them yourselves.
14My submission on that is that this is a reference to the
15Gauleiters from the Ostland whom he had met in Berlin, on
16whom the Jews being deported were going to be dumped, and
17they had made that remark to him, it is remiss of me not
18to have put that in this closing submission. I looked at
19that text again actually three or four days ago and my
20attention was drawn to the sentence before the remark
21about "liquidate them yourselves", in which it becomes
22quite plain he is referring to the Gauleiters of the
23Eastern territories by inference on whom these people are
24going to be dumped.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, thank you very much.
26 MR IRVING: I now come to the Schlegelberger document, which is
1another most difficult piece of historical paper for my
2opponents. It is a document -- I would explain for the
3benefit of those who do not know it -- which comes in a
4file of the German Ministry of Justice.
5 In late March or early April 1942, after seeing
6Germany's top civil servant who reported only to Hitler,
7Franz Schlegelberger, who was acting as Minister of
8Justice, dictated this famous memorandum, the
9Schlegelberger Document as we call it here in this
10courtroom, upon which all Holocaust historians, and the
11Defendants' experts witnesses in this case have hitherto
12turned enough blind eyes to have won several battles of
13Trafalgar. For many years after the war it vanished, this
14document, but that is another story. Asked about this
15specific document after a lecture in the German Institute,
16here in London in November 1998, Dr Longerich, who is now
17the Defendants' expert witness, who had the function of
18chairman, rose to inform the audience at that meeting that
19the speaker was not prepared to answer questions from
20David Irving. It is a genuine document, the one I was
21going to ask him about, the Schlegelberger Document, and
22he refers in one breath both to Hitler and the Solution of
23Jewish Problem. Confronted with it in the witness box,
24he, Longerich, and his fellow experts have argued either
25that it was totally unimportant, notwithstanding its
26content, or that it concerned only the Mischlinge, the
1mixed race Jews, and not the Final Solution in any broader
2sense. Ingeniously in fact, Dr Longerich even tried to
3suggest it may have originated in 1940 or 1941 and not in
41942 at all. The document has them, in other words, in a
6 The document's own contents, and this is the
7wording of the actual document, it is only very short, the
8document's own contents destroys their latter argument.
9In the first sentence, it says: "Mr Reich Minister
10Lammers informed me that the Fuhrer had repeatedly
11declared to him that he wants to hear that the Solution of
12the Jewish Problem has been adjourned (or postponed) until
13after the war". That that is the broader Final Solution
14is plain from the second sentence which follows. It
15shows, namely the Mischling question, the mixed race
16question, was something totally different: "Accordingly",
17the memorandum continues, "the current deliberations have
18in the opinion of Mr Lammers purely theoretical value".
19Those deliberations were, as my opponents themselves have
20argued, solely concerned with what to do with the
21Mischlinge and the like. The document is quite plain. It
22was dictated by a lawyer, so presumably he knew what he
23was writing. There is no room for argument. My opponents
24have pretended for years that the document effectively
25does not exist. So much for the Schlegelberger Document.
26 I have dealt at length in my statements in the
1witness box, my Lord, again, and while cross-examining the
2witnesses with the other contentious items or issues,
3namely the Goebbels Diary entries for March 27th and May
430th 1942, the Himmler minute of September 22, 1942 and
5this note, Himmler's note, for this meeting with Hitler on
6December 10th 1942.
7 My Lord, I have nothing to add to what I said in
8the witness box under cross-examination on that matter,
9and your Lordship may find it unsatisfactory that I do not
10specifically summarize it in a neat and handy index for
11your Lordship in my closing speech, and once again may I
12mea culpa . Also the meetings with Antonescu and with
13Horthy in April 1943, the deportation and murder of the
14Jews in Rome in October 1943, Himmler's speeches on
15October 4th and 6th, 1943, and May 15th and 24th, 1944,
16Hitler's speech on May 26th, 1944 and Ribbentrop's
17testimony and evidence from his cell in Nuremberg.
18I contend, in each case, that my use of these items is
20 The only mistake which I do admit is that in the
21conference between Hitler and Horthy in April 1943,
22I transposed two dates from April 16th to April 17th,
231943. I do not agree that the Defendants are entitled to
24make the kind of capital out of that error which they have
25sought to do.
26 I must mention one document and that is the
1report, or Meldung, No. 51, which Mr Rampton has referred
2also to this morning, submitted by Himmler to Hitler
3through their respective adjutants, and dated December
429th, 1942. The Defendants, quite properly, have made
5great play with this document, claiming that it is clear
6proof that Hitler was apprised by Himmler, by virtue of
7this document, of the murder of over 300,000 Jews on a
8transparent pretext in Russia in the previous three
9months. The document was submitted to Hitler according to
10the notation on it. Your Lordship will remember that
11I established from the same files -- that is why the
12context of the document is so important to know what else
13is in the same files -- that Hitler's was apprised by,
14I am sorry, your Lordship will remember that I established
15that on the same day, December 1942, which was at the
16height of the Battle of Stalingrad, and in exactly the
17same manner as this document, a document of precisely the
18same general character, namely Meldung No. 49, had to be
19vorgelegt or submitted to Hitler not once but twice. In
20other words, there were two such notations on it, which is
21a clear indication he was not reading them on the first
22occasion, on that occasion at least, if at all. If I may
23draw an analogy, which I used before with which the Court
24may well be familiar, sometimes if a series of briefs put
25to a fashionable and expensive Counsel he is obliged to
26read them fully and properly, normally, and he draws a
1hefty fee for doing so; but in fact he does not read
3 MR RAMPTON: I never heard that.
4 MR IRVING: In fact, in law, as in history, the fact that a
5document -- I am not referring, of course, to Mr Rampton,
6it is to somebody else -- in law, as in history, the fact
7that a document has been "put to" somebody does not mean
8that somebody has read it, unless there is a collateral
9evidence of feedback, and in this case there was no such
11 Another issue of interest to your Lordship is my
12references to Marie Valliant-Couturier. My references to
13her seem to have been quite justified -- I know that is
14not of issue -- from what we know of her and her full
15testimony in the Nuremberg tribunal in 1946. She had
16married the editor of l'Humanite, she and her father were
17bosom friends of Willi Munzenberg, author of the
18propaganda about the Reichstag Fire -- a founder member
19and of one the most accomplished progagandists of the
20Comintern. It is evident from the way, and this is what is
21relevant, it is evident from the way that the hard-pressed
22defence counsel Marx conducted this cross-examination of
23her at Nuremberg that he was implying to the tribunal that
24she had never even been at Auschwitz. Your Lordship will
25remember that she described to the tribunal a
26beating-machine used by the SS to administer corporal
1punishment. Her testimony is riddled with such
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can you just help me about this? You say
4that hard-pressed defence counsel conducted his
5cross-examination on her, implying she had not even been
6in Auschwitz. I have no recollection of seeing anything
7about that at all. Is that my memory playing me false?
8 MR IRVING: Under cross-examination, I put this to a witness,
9well one of the witnesses, my Lord, I put this to the
10witness that Marx had asked her about her literary career,
11that she had been a journalist in a previous existence.
12He asked the questions in a certain way, that counsel do
13ask if they are asking, trying to elicit from her the fact
14that it was purely fantasy in that she had never been
15there, and this is in the transcripts, my Lord.
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Perhaps we could just dig out the reference,
17not you whilst you are on your feet; Miss Rogers may be
18willing to. Thank you very much.
19 MR IRVING: Your Lordship will remember that she described to
20the IMT, to the tribunal, a beating-machine. I am sure
21you Lordship remembers that.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I do remember that.
23 IRVING: All of us who have been to public schools have fond
24recollections of beating-machines and beatings -- used by
25the SS to administer corporal punishment. Her testimony
26is riddled with such absurdities, and when the experienced
1American Judge Biddle jotted down his sceptical comment on
2this witness in his notes, which I used, even as she was
3still speaking, he meant it -- and I certainly took it
4that way -- to be a reference to all that he had heard
5(and largely disbelieved) up to that point. That is the
6way I took it.
7 Kurt Aumeier dossier: Kurt Aumeier was like
8Rudolf Hoess, a very high-ranking official at Auschwitz
9concentration camp. I found the Kurt Aumeier dossier by
10conducting a systematic, "shirtsleeve" examination of the
11Public Records office files in 1992. Any one of the
12scholars introduced by the Defendants as witnesses could
13have found it equally readily. At first I intended to
14transcribe and publish the document myself, as a bit of a
15scoop, properly annotated, like the 1938 Goebbels
16Diaries. Instead I drew the attention of several scholars
17to it, including, to the best my recollection, both Sir
18Martin Gilbert and Dr Gerald Fleming. I had often sent
19them both documents which I had found which I knew would
20interest them, documents relating to the Holocaust. When
21I abandoned the publication idea, I drew the attention of
22other scholars to it, including Professor Robert Van Pelt,
23the expert witness in this case, in a very lengthy letter
24written to him in May 1997. In his letter I identified to
25him numerous archival references of interest to his
26special subject, including the Aumeier dossier. Not
1receiving from Van Pelt a reply, I published that letter
2in full in a 1997 newsletter, and I posted it on my
3website. Numerous correspondents utilized an e-mail link
4to Professor Van Pelt on that page, and the Defendants'
5solicitors eventually asked me to "deactivate" the link.
6My long letter to him in May 1997 had been mailed to
7Professor Van Pelt from Chicago with proper postage,
8addressed to his correct postal address at the university,
9and it was never returned to me. Professor Van Pelt
10claimed here not to have received it, and he suggested in
11his report that I told people about it only when the
12Defendants' legal team of researchers found the file in
13the PRO quite recently. This is absurd. They found the
14Aumeier file not least because it was included in my
15Discovery (both in the general Judenfrage archive box, and
16as item No. 2066). I did not know until two years later
17that he was to be a witness in this case.
18 As for the Aumeier dossier's content, his
19manuscripts suggest, or confirm, the extent, or the
20existence rather, of limited-scale gassings at Auschwitz.
21The figures are unreliable, and many of the other details
22conflict with those provided by the equally flawed
23writings of the Auschwitz commandant Rudolf Heoss. This
24is, in my submission, the most likely reason why the
25Defendants have not relied heavily on either the source
26nature of the defence, because I would have cross-examined
1them on the flaws, my Lord, nor, for that matter, have
2they made any use of the loudly trumpeted Eichmann memoirs
3prised out of the Israeli Government archives. I submit
4that the reason that they have not made any use of it is
5because in the entire document, which of course only
6recently came into our hands, although this former
7SS-Obersturmbannfuhrer is writing with brutal frankness,
8he describes the most appalling spectacles that he has
9seen, including one instance where a child's brains that
10have been blown out by a bullet are splattered on his
11coat, he does not refer even once to being shown a gas
12chamber during the official guided tours as
13executioner-in-chief, so to speak, of the Auschwitz and
14Birkenau camps. So the Eichmann's memoirs are interesting
15not so much for what they do say as to what is not in
17 I heard what Professor Evans and learned counsel
18had to state about General Kurt Daluege, the chief of
19police in Germany, as a source for the criminal statistics
20of 1932. The Defendants have been unable to locate the
21figures that I quoted in the Daluege lecture which I used
22as one source. Nor did they appear to notice that it was
23in fact a lecture to the recently formed Interpol.
24Professor Evans not to have looked in the other three
25sources listed for that one sentence in my book, which
26included two reputable works of history, and so his
1strictures are really quite meaningless. For reasons
2known to the court, since 1993 I have no longer had access
3to the German Institute from which those sources are
4housed. I do not invent statistics, and it is clear by
5inference at least that the data which I gave came from
6one of the other three sources and not from the lecture.
7 That is the best that I can say on that matter.
8 I now come to the thorny matter of Hitler's
9knowledge of the Final Solution. This became the most
10controversial issue, both in this courtroom and stretching
11far back into my writing career, and I wish, just because
12of this, that I picked upon a different biographical
13subject. It certainly was not of my choice that this
14controversy arose. Your Lordship will remember that, when
15I wrote my first book, the Air Ministry advised me in
16future to write about the Zulu wars, because of the
17controversies that would arise.
18 Because of the inescapable conclusion that
19Hitler had probably not ordered, or been aware of until
20relatively late, of the ultimate fate of the European
21Jews, the ones who had been deported, I forfeited, as my
22US agent predicted, in that book Hitler's War, perhaps
23half a million dollars, or more, of lucrative sublicencing
24deals with major corporations, the Reader's Digest,
25paperback houses, reprints, the Sunday Times in this
26country and so on.
1 After I completed -- and this is important --
2a first draft of that book in about 1969 or 1970,
3I realized that there was this totally inexplicable and
4unexpected gap in the archives, namely no evidence showing
5Hitler's personal involvement. I hired a trusted friend,
6a historian, well known to this court, Dr Elke Frohlich of
7the Institute of History in Munich, to go through all the
8then available German archives again, with the specific
9task of looking for documents linking Hitler with the
10Final Solution. She did a conscientious and excellent
11job, working for me in the files of the Nuremberg State
12Archives, the Institut fur Zeitgeschichte, the Berlin
13Document Centre, the Bundesarchives and the military
14archives in Freiburg - in this connection I should have
15added, of course. Her resulting research materials, my
16correspondence with her, the index cards and photocopies,
17form a part of my Discovery in this action. It was she,
18for example, who produced for me the then unpublished
19diary entry of the Governor-General Hans Frank, the one
20that I just dealt with, it was actually a meeting
21transcript of December 13th, 1941. It was currently being
22edited by her colleagues at the Institute and she provided
23me with a privileged copy of that.
24 I would incidentally, my Lord, rely on this
25episode, namely hiring a historian to prove that I had got
26it wrong at my own expense as one further instance of my
1integrity as an independent historian. Inherently
2dissatisfied with the results of my own research, I hired
3and paid out of my own pocket for this second opinion,
4acting as an avocatus diaboli, to trawl once more, and
5with a net of finer mesh, across the same fishing grounds
6for documents that might in fact destroy me, destroy my
7then still tentative hypothesis. In a similar step, which
8I think I took to appease the now worried American
9publishers, I wrote in December 1975 to four or five of
10the major international Jewish historical research
11institutions -- I remember writing to the Institute in
12New York, and to the Wiener library in this country and to
13the equivalent bodies -- appealing for "evidence proving
14Hitler's guilt in the extermination of Jews". That is
15from the actual letter I sent. All of these enquiries by
16me drew a blank, except for one. As I summarised in a
17letter to the Sunday Telegraph on June 19th 1977, "all
18offered their apologies except Professor Raul Hilberg, who
19is the author of the standard history on the subject, who
20honourably conceded that he too has come to the view that
21Hitler may not have known". This actual letter is my
22discovery and was available to the Defendants. This
23letter to me was December 12th, 1975.
24 The other institutions stated that that too had
25no such evidence, or that did not reply.
26 So I did what I could to establish the truth of
1that particular allegation.
2 My Lord, I now come to what I call the
3international endeavour to destroy my legitimacy as an
4historian, and the participation, in my submission, of the
5Defendants in that particular endeavour. I have
6abbreviated it and much of what I have put in the pages
7which I supplied to your Lordship I shall not read out.
8I shall say when I am not going to read out what follows,
9not because it is not true but because your Lordship has
10probably quite rightly questioned the strict relevance of
11it to the matter before the court.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I think that is sensible, if I may say
14 MR IRVING: If it does not appear to be immediately relevant,
15then it is because I shall rely on it in the other matters
16that I put, namely the aggravated damages aspect and the
17fact that, if I am accused of certain postures or uttering
18certain tasteless remarks, these momentary lapses are not
19justified, but explicable on the basis of what I had been
20through, if I can put it like that.
21 Before I proceed to the problems with the
22accepted version of the history of Auschwitz, I turn first
23to the submission that your Lordship will allow me to make
24on the 30 year international endeavour by a group of
25organizations to destroy my legitimacy as an historian.
26I use that phrase for a reason. I submit that I am
1entitled to draw these documents to your Lordship's
2attention, because these bodies, acting with that secret
3and common purpose, compiled dossiers and reports on me
4with the intention of destroying me. That did so,
5exercising no proper care for accuracy, and, as is evident
6from the second Defendant's, discovery, Professor
7Lipstadt's discovery, and from the introduction to her
8book, in which she explicitly acknowledges the assistance
9provided by many of these bodies, she drew upon these
10tainted well springs as the source for much of the poison
11that she wrote about me. We shall hear that, buried in
12the files of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre in Toronto, is a
13document now also in Mrs Lipstadt's files -- that sent it
14to her -- which forms something of a blueprint for the
15attempt to destroy my name. A researcher for the Centre,
16an anonymous researcher for the Centre, commissioned to
17investigate -- why was a person in Toronto commissioned to
18investigate my life? I do not know -- to investigate my
19life in detail, recommended in that compilation after
20referring to my thorough archival research and general
21historical insight as follows:
22 "Given this accurate version of reality, it is
23all the more clear why this activities must be curtailed,
24and why this alleged legitimacy must be eradicated".
25 This document is from Professor Lipstadt's own
1 I have been subjected, since at least 1973 and
2probably before then, to what would be called in warfare a
3campaign of interdiction. I know of no other historian or
4writer who has been subjected to a campaign of
5vilification even 1/10th as intense. The book "Denying the
6Holocaust" was the climax of this campaign. There exist,
7as I have said in my opening speech, various bodies in
8this country, and around the world, who have at heart the
9interests of special groups. I make no protest about that
10but many other Englishmen have noticed, or found out,
11usually by chance, that these bodies keep files on us,
12which that use to our disadvantage if that believe we are
13a danger to their interests. To give one particularly
14gross example, under the cover provided by the United
15States First Amendment, the Jewish Telegraph Agency
16accused me in 1995 of having supplied the trigger
17mechanism for the Oklahoma City bomb. That item was
18picked up by the American press and then faintly echoed by
19the British press. It was only months later that I found
20out who started that particular lie.
21 But regrettably this has become a campaign to
22defame people whom they regard as a danger. A number of
23special bodies exist solely for this purpose. Professor
24Kevin MacDonald, of the University of California at Long
25Beach, a sociologist who is the world's leading expert on
26these things, expressed forceful opinions to this court in
1this expert report, on which he offered himself for
2cross-examination, it has to be said, and I urge your
3Lordship not to disregard the substance of what he had to
5 These bodies will not endear themselves, if
6found out, to the victims of their campaigns.
7 Mr Rampton made much of Mr Ernest Zundel's gross
8and ill considered reference to the Judenpack, as
9anti-Semitic a word as one might wish to hear. Mr Rampton
10labels this man as an extremist, and anti-Semitic in
11consequence. This court, of course, has been told nothing
12by Mr Rampton of what, if any, remarks or incidents
13preceded the outburst by Mr Zundel that was very briefly
14quoted. We do know, and I can so inform this court, that
15his home has been torched and burnt to the ground. Such
16violent incidents certainly cannot excuse the violent
17remarks but that can explain them -- a difference.
18Because that do not like what he writes or publishes,
19these bodies have attempted to destroy this life with
20criminal prosecution in an attempt to have him deported or
22 Going on down the page, my own experience at the
23hands of these self-appointed censors has not been so very
24different. It began in 1963 when agents of Searchlight
25raided my home and were caught red handed in this criminal
26attempt. Ever since then that publication has tweaked my
1tail with a stream of defamatory articles, a 37 year
2onslaught to which, as a good Christian, I turned the
3other cheek. In fact, the man who runs that magazine
4turns out to have been one of the producers of the film
5which has been put to the court, one of the editors.
6 It might be said, and I have turned the page
7now, my Lord, that the real Defendants in this case are
8not represented in this court but their presence has been
9with us throughout like Banquo's ghost. These are the
10people who commissioned the work complained of and
11provided much of the materials used in it. I understand
12that provided considerable funds for the defence.
13 I know very little about these bodies, but I am
14aware that the anti-defamation league of the B'nai Brith,
15which is an American body, has a 50 million dollar annual
16budget, substantially greater than an author commands
17whose livelihood has been destroyed by their activities.
18When your Lordship comes to consider such things as costs
19and damages, I would respectfully submit that you bear
20these things in mind.
21 We have them to thank for the spectacle that has
22been presented in this court room since January. Without
23their financial assistance, it is unlikely that Mr Rampton
24and this defence team and his instructing solicitors could
25have mounted this colossal onslaught on my name.
26 Further down, for over three years this
1well-funded team sitting opposite me, next to me, has
2drilled down deep into my private papers, burrowed on a
3broad front into the archives of the world and a
4multi-pronged attack trying to establish that what I have
5written over the last 35 or more years is distorted or
6mistranslated in pursuance of an agenda, namely the
7exoneration of Adolf Hitler, trying to dig up every little
8morsel of dirt on me that that can.
9 My book Hitler's War was published by the Viking
10Press in New York and by Hodder and Stoughton in this
11country in 1977. That is when what can be seen as the
12coordinated attack on the book began. The Viking Press
13was and is one of that nation's most reputable publishers
14and in fact I believe they are owner of the first
15Defendant company in this case.
16 Turning the page now, the Anti-defamation League
17issued a report with more fervour than accuracy, saying:
18"David Irving is the nom de plume of John Cawdell" --
19this not true, I hasten to say, do not get it wrong, it is
20totally untrue -- "a revisionist historiographer of Adolf
21Hitler, particularly regarding Hitler's role in and
22knowledge of the mass extermination of European Jewry.
23His major premise", says the Anti-defamation League, "is
24that Hitler was largely oblivious to the large scale
25killings of Jews in the death camps".
26 I carry on: The agent's report -- this is a
1report put out in 1977.
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I wonder, Mr Irving, really whether one might
3just go to the middle of page 35 without doing any
4injustice to your case.
5 MR IRVING: Yes. When I then began my lecturing activities
6around the United States in the early 1980s, speaking at
7private functions, schools and universities, the
8headquarters of the ADL sent out a secret circular, a
9"Backgrounder", in 1983, to all their local agents. The
10backgrounder, dated July 6th 1983, began with the words,
11"British author David Irving has been of concern to ADL,
12as well as to the Jewish community generally, since the
131977 publication of his book Hitler's War", and it
14indicated that it was the controversy over Hitler and the
15Jews that was the reason. We have heard of similar such
16circulars being generated by them on other famous names.
17In my case the ADL instructed its"regional offices":
18"Should he surface in your region, please
19notify the Fact Finding Department and your Civil Rights
21 It is quite plain that the ADL were not
22concerned with promoting civil rights. I am mentioning
23them because of course that collaborated very closely with
24the Second Defendant in the preparation of the book that
25is the subject of this trial.
26 It is quite plain that the Anti-defamation
1League were not concerned with promoting civil rights, but
2in abrogating one of the most basic rights of all, the
3right to freedom of speech.
4 Further down, correspondence with my literary
5agent showed by 1984 that already the international smear
6campaign was inflicting substantial financial damage on
7me. It was at precisely this time, 1984 -- I will not
8comment on the year -- that the Second Defendant, then
9teaching in the Near Eastern Languages Centre of the
10University of California at Los Angeles, Professor
11Lipstadt, offered her services to Yehuda Bauer in
12Jerusalem, a very well known Israeli Professor. She
13attached "A proposal for research: The Historical and
14Historiographic Methodology of the Holocaust
15revisionists". This was the genesis of the book that we
16are complaining about. I ask your Lordship to note that
17on page 38 of the synopsis prepared by the Second
18Defendant, which is in my bundle E at page 38, The Second
19Defendant, Professor Lipstadt, mentioned my name in the
20following words: "They [the deniers] also find it
21expedient to associate themselves with those such as David
22Irving who do not deny that the Holocaust took place but
23seek to shift the blame to others."
24 To conclude this, on the matter of her
25employment: on May 31, 1988 Professor Lipstadt was
26awarded and additional agreement for research on this
1topic by the Vidal Sassoon Centre for the study of
2Anti-Semitism at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. So
3at all material times, the book was being commissioned by
4that University in Jerusalem. This research, it should be
5added, was what finally bore fruit as the book complained
6of, "Denying the Holocaust". The publisher at that time
7was to be Mr Robert Maxwell, who was liaising with
8Professor Yehuda Bauer.
9 Briefly summarizing the next page: During this
10period the international campaign against me achieved some
11ugly successes. I was illegally deported from Austria.
12The Austrian government had to pay me compensation when it
14 The Second Defendant's discovery -- lower down
15that page -- which included such correspondence with, and
16items from, the Anti-Defamation League as she has seen fit
17to provide, throws some interesting lights on the ADL.
18When a local newspaper, The Daily Pilot, published in
19Orange County, south of Los Angeles, a report on a
20function of the Institute of Historical Review, about
21which we have heard much from the Defence in the last few
22weeks. The anti-Defamation League was horrified as the
23regional office reported, to find that the reporter in the
24newspaper, and I quote "seems to find an air of legitimacy
25surrounding the group". That word "legitimacy" again;
26remember they were going to destroy my legitimacy? The
1reporter, Mr Bob Van Eyken, who had evidently not got the
2message, even described the IHR members as "neatly dressed
3... evoking a sense of reasoned dignity". This clearly
4clashed with the skinheaded, jackbooted extremist
5stereotype that the ADL, like the expert witnesses in this
6case, wished to promote for the IHR and other "right-wing"
7groups. This material, though clearly discoverable in
8this action, was withheld from discovery by the Second
9Defendant until a summons was issued to produce all her
10correspondence with the ADL.
11 We know that the Second Defendant has had
12extensive dealings with the Anti-Defamation League, the
13ADL, this American body. Even from her own limited
14discovery, about the deficiencies in which I still have
15more to say, we know that Professor Lipstadt was provided
16with smear dossiers by them. She thanks them in her
17Introduction. She made not attempt to verify the contents
18of this material with me as the victim (or, so far as this
19court knows, with any others), but she recklessly
20published it raw and unchecked. A 25-cent phone call to
21me would have saved her endless trouble. Instead she
22preferred to rely on these sheets like the "confidential"
23and defamatory four-page item dated October 23rd 1986,
24headed: "Profile on Dave Irving", evidently coming from
25another Canadian body. Characteristically, the "profile"
26was disclosed to me by her solicitors without any covering
1letter from its author or custodian and shorn of any
2identifying material; I wrote more than once in vain
3asking for the missing pages to be provided.
4 It is quite evident that the Anti-Defamation
5League, who were in cahoots with the Second Defendant, set
6itself the task of destroying my career, in consort with
7other similar organisations around the world, many of
8whom, if not all, collaborated with the Second Defendant
9in writing her book. The pinnacle of their achievement
10came in 1996, when the Second Defendant, as she herself
11boasted to The Washington Post, was among those who put
12pressure on St Martin's Press Incorporated, who had been
13one of my United States publishers for some 15 years, to
14violate their publishing agreement with me and abandon
15publication of Goebbels, my Goebbels biography, "Goebbels,
16Mastermind of the Third Reich".
17 For a few days, these enemies of free speech
18stepped up the pressure. They publicised the private home
19addresses of St Martin's Press executives on the
20Internet. They staged street addresses in Manhattan.
21They organised a walkout by the publisher's staff. When
22SMP refused to be intimidated, Professor Lipstadt wheeled
23out the rhetoric: to Frank Rich, a syndicated columnist
24of The New York Times, she accused me of being a repeat
25killer, if I can put it like that: "What David Irving is
26doing ... is not the destruction of live people, but the
1destruction of people who already died. It's killing them
2a second time. It's killing history". This was not far
3distance from the outrageous claim on page 213 of her
4book, to which no justification has been pleaded to my
5knowledge, that I justified the incarceration of Jews in
6Nazi concentration camps. Quoted by The Washington Post
7on April 3rd 1996, Professor Lipstadt stated:
8 "They ... don't publish reputations, they
9publish books", referring to St Martin's Press. "But
10would they publish a book by Jeffrey Dahmer on man-boy
11relations? Of course the reputation of the author
12counts. And no legitimate historian takes David Irving's
14 We have heard quoted in this Court two tasteless
15remarks I am recorded as having made, about Chappaquiddick
16and about the Association of Spurious Survivors, and I do
17not deny that those words were tasteless. But bad taste
18is not what is in the pleadings, while express malice is:
19and the odiousness of Professor Lipstadt's comparison, in
20a mass circulation newspaper of record, of a British
21author with Jeffrey Dahmer, a madman who had recently
22murdered and cannibalised a dozen homosexuals in the
23mid-West of the USA, in surely compounded by the fact that
24Lipstadt had at that time not read a single book that
25I had written, let alone the manuscript of Dr Goebbels
26that she had joined in trying to suppress. It is clear
1that neither she nor the ADL was concerned with the
2merits, or otherwise, of the Goebbels biography. They
3wanted it put down, suppressed, ausgerottet: and me with
5 Having, like St Martin's Press, thoroughly read
6it, the major US publisher Doubleday Inc. had selected
7this book as their May 1996 choice for History Book of the
8Month. But that deal depended on the SMP contract, and
9thus it too collapsed. The financial losses inflicted on
10me by this one episode in April 1996 were of the order of
11half a million dollars, which might seen proper reward for
12the eight years' hard work that I had invested in writing
13this box, and hauling it through its five draft versions.
14The book never appeared in the United States.
15 From the publication of Hitler's War onwards,
16the attitude of the print media to me changed. A
17strategically placed review written in one afternoon, by
18one man furnished with the appropriate dossier on me,
19could go a long way to destroy the product of six or eight
20years' research, as we have just seen. That was why these
21dossiers had been created.
22 To the right journalists or writers, such as the
23Second Defendant, these dossiers were on tap. A fax from
24Professor Lipstadt to the Institute of Jewish Affairs in
25London, or to the ADL in New York, or to the Simon
26Wiesenthal Centre in Toronto, and we have got these faxes
1from her discovery, released to her a cornucopia of filth,
2which she had no need to check or verify, because in the
3United States such writings are protected by the authority
4of the First Amendment to the US Constitution, the
5laudable name of the freedom of speech, or by the
6authority of New York Times v. Sullivan, which
7effectively declares to libellers that it is open season
8on any public figure.
9 I turn the page, my Lord.
10 This Court will surely not take amiss of me that
11I refused to be intimidated by these truly "Nazi" methods,
12and that I have on a few occasions used perhaps tasteless
13language around the world about perpetrators. The
14violence against me spread around the world, and always it
15was orchestrated by the same organizations.
16 Turn the page.
17 In England, a parallel campaign was launched by
18the Board of Deputies, and by other organizations which we
19know to have collaborated with the Defendants in producing
20this libellous book. This kicked into high gear after my
21own imprint published an abridged edition of the Leuchter
22report in 1989. Pressure was put on the World Trade
23Centre in the City of London to repudiate our contract for
24the press conference. A picket, a muscle man picket, was
25staged outside our own front door to prevent journalists
26from attending when the conference was switched to my own
1harm. The Board arranged an early day motion in the House
2of Commons, as a privileged way of smearing my name --
3publishing a smear on my name. On June 30th of that year
4the Jewish Chronicle, which is one of the newspapers that
5has reported this entire proceedings most fairly, in my
6view (and I wish to put that on record) revealed that
7representations had been made to my principal British and
8Commonwealth publisher, Macmillan Limited, to drop me as
10 Macmillan had already published several of my
11books and they were under contract to publish several
12more. I had no fears that they would succumb to this
13intimidation. They had informed me that Hitler's War was
14running so successfully that they intended to keep it
15permanently in print. I am entitled to mention this
16background, as I have mentioned the Board's other
17clandestine activities against me, because it was said by
18Mr Rampton that I later made one tasteless remark in
19public about the Board of Deputies. If somebody attacks,
20using secret and furtive means, the very basis of the
21existence of my family then it may be at least
22understandable that I speak ill of them.
23 Lower down the next paragraph: Secretly, on
24July 17th 1991, the Board of Deputies wrote to the
25President of the German Office for the Protection of the
26Constitution (which is their MI5), a body of which we
1heard greatly admiring words from Professor Funke in the
2witness box; this English board urged that they take steps
3to stop me, a British citizen like no doubt the members of
4the Board, from entering Germany.
5 Germany is a country on whose publishers and
6archives I have been heavily dependent, as this Court is
7aware. We have only the BfV's reply, dated August 9th
81991, to the Board of deputies. I retrieved a copy of
9this letter. If your Lordship is wondering how I come
10into possession of documents like that, I retrieved a copy
11of this letter from the files of the Prime Minister of
12Australia; so the same Board in London had evidently also
13sent its dossiers to its collaborators in Canberra and, no
14doubt, other countries, in its efforts to gag me
15worldwide. That is an indication of the worldwide
16networking that went on, this secret common enterprise, of
17which the Second Defendant is a party, to destroy my
18legitimacy as an historian and to deprive me of free
19speech, of which the Defendants have made themselves the
21 As is evident from a letter from the Austrian
22Ambassador dated June 22nd 1992, the Board also applied
23pressure on that country to ensure that I did not enter,
24or that if I did I would be arrested. The same kind of
25thing happened in Argentina.
26 Lower down the page towards the end: On
1December 6th 1991, an Internal Office Memo from
2Macmillan's files -- my own publisher in London -- records
3that "quite a number of people" had commented unfavourably
4to Macmillan's about them publishing my books, and one
5person, who was an unnamed Professor of Politics at
6Oxford, who had evidently learned nothing from the book
7burning episodes of Nazi Germany, stated "that they would
8be more inclined to publish with us [Macmillan] if we were
9not publishing Irving". (The Oxford professor of politics
10was probably, in my view, Professor Peter Pulzer,
11identified by Professor Lipstadt in her books as such and
12quoted by The Independent at the time).
13 This campaign had been coordinated. In some of
14its members, it seems that the illiberal spirit of
15Dr Goebbels lived on behind the Board of Deputies'
16facade. Meeting behind locked doors at their headquarters
17in December 1991, December 12, a body identified as the
18"Education and Academic Committee of the Holocaust
19Educational Trust, registered as a charitable body, held a
20conference, including point 6:
21 "David Irving: Concern was voiced over the
22publication of the second edition of Hitler's War". This
23is 1991, 14 years after the first edition. "There was
24debate over how to approach Macmillan publishers over
25Goebbels Diary". That was the other book they were going
26to publish of mine. "It was agreed to await new[s] from
1Jeremy Coleman before deciding what action to take."
2 We know more of this meeting from the statement
3to this Court by my witness Dr John Fox, who was present
4at this cabal in his capacity as editor of The British
5Journal of Holocaust Education. He testifies as follows:
6 "As an independently-minded historian, I was
7affronted by the suggestion concerning Mr David Irving
8[...] At a certain point in the meeting, attention turned"
9-- do you wish to suggest I move on?
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY: No. I am reading around what you are reading
11out to me.
12 MR IRVING: Yes. "At certain point in the meeting, attention
13turned to the subject of Mr Irving and reports that the
14publishing company of Macmillan would be publishing his
15biography of Goebbels. Mr Ben Helfgott ... turned to me,
16the only non-Jew present at the meeting, and suggested
17that 'John'", John Fox, "'could approach Macmillan to get
18them to stop publication'. I refused point-blank to accede
19to that suggestion, arguing that in a democracy such as
20ours one simply could not do such a thing. That amounted
21to censorship ...
22 Nevertheless, as the Committee minutes make
23plain, it was planned by some to consider further action
24about how best to scupper Mr Irving's publishing plans
26 The clandestine pressure on Macmillan's began at
1once. My editor at Macmillan's, Roland Philipps, noted in
2an internal memorandum of January 2nd 1992 that they
3should reassure prospective authors that they had turned
4down many other book proposals from me, and had no plans
5to continue publishing me after Goebbels. It was not the
6bravest of postures to adopt, you might think. The
7memorandum continues: "If this helps you to reassure any
8prospective authors we are happy for you to say it
9(although not too publicly if possible)". The desire of
10Macmillan's to stab in the back, for this stab in the back
11to be secret from their own highly successful author,
12myself, is understandable. In fact, their ultimate stab
13in the back was to come in the summer of 1992.
14 In May 1992, meanwhile, we find Deborah Lipstadt
15providing a list of her personal targets, victims,
16including now myself to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum
17in Washington; she advised the Museum to contact Gail Gans
18at the Research Department of the ADL (about whom we have
19heard) in New York City for additional names, and to "tell
20her I told you to call her". This establishes that the
21Defendants consider that that museum, which is a US
22taxpayer-funded body, was actively participating in their
23network, and the museum duly provided press clippings from
24London newspapers relating to me, which have now turned up
25in the Defendants' files.
26 The attempts to suffocate my publishing career
1continued. I mention a second arm of this attack. Since
2my own imprint, my own publishing imprint, which I had set
3up myself some years earlier, would not be intimidated as
4easily as Macmillan's, or indeed at all, the hostile
5groups applied pressure to major bookselling chains
6throughout Britain to burn or destroy my books and in
7particular the new edition of Hitler's War. Some of the
8press clippings reporting this nasty campaign are in my
9discovery. They include reports of a sustained campaign
10of window smashing of the branches of Waterstone's
11bookstores in the biggest Midlands cities, after
12complaints were made by local groups.
13 Waterstones informed one Newcastle newspaper
14that they were taking books off public shelves "following
15a number of vandal attacks on book stores across the
16country". The Nottingham Waterstones took the book off
17display after a brick was thrown through its window. The
18campaign clearly coordinated from London. None of this
19was reported in the national press, but one would have
20thought that these groups would have recognized the bad
21karma in any campaign of smashing windows or burning
23 I wrote privately to Tim Waterstone, the head at
24that time of Waterstones, guaranteeing to indemnify his
25chain for their costs of any uninsured claims. But he
26refused to be intimidated by the campaign and, my Lord,
1that is one reason why I took the names of four
2Waterstones branches off the list of Defendants in this
3action at a very early stage.
4 I am turning the page now, my Lord:
5Demonstrations organized outside by property, violent
6demonstrations, police were frequently called. The same
7newspaper reported -- this is halfway down that following
8page -- that the Anti-Nazi League and its parent body, the
9Board of Deputies, were applying pressure to The Sunday
10Times to violate its contract with me which was the
11contract to obtain the Goebbels diaries from the Moscow
12archives. Again, the reason why I mention all of this may
13be apparent, it is when I make remarks about by my
14critics, occasionally using vivid language, I sometimes
15had reason. As an indication of the pressure ----
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, I am just wondering, and I am
17sorry to interrupt you and I am not going to stop you at
18all, but reading on to about page 54, you describe, do you
19not, the continuation of what you see as being this really
20worldwide attempt to close you down as an historian and
21attacks on your house and pressure of various kinds being
22brought to bear all over the world. I just wonder whether
23there is any particular benefit -- tell me if you there is
24-- in reading out the next seven or so pages? If there
25is any particular point you want to make, do, but I feel
26myself we could probably move on to the middle of page
2 MR IRVING: I will move on to 51, my Lord. When I found out -
3too late - that this fake evidence had been planted on
4Canadian files, which resulted in my being deported from
5Canada in handcuffs on November 13th 1992, I was angered
6and astounded that a British organisation could be
7secretly doing this to British citizens. It turned out
8from these files that academics with whom I had freely
9corresponded and exchanged information, including Gerald
10Fleming, had been acting as agents and informants for this
11body. I submit (which is why I am reading this out) that
12these are the bodies that collaborated directly or
13indirectly with the Defendants in the preparation of the
14book and that the Defendants, knowing of the obvious
15fantasy in some of what they said, should have shown
16greater caution in accepting their materials as true.
17 There was an immediate consequence of this fake
18data planted on Canadian files. One data report recorded
19the "fact" that I had written 78 books denying the
20Holocaust which, of course, is totally untrue. In August
211992 a docket was placed on Canadian immigration files
22about me saying, among other things, this is a secret
23file, "Subject David Irving is Holocaust denier, may be
24inadmissible" to Canada with the result, of course, that
25precisely that happened. I was arrested on October 28th
26at Vancouver, making a speech on freedom of speech,
1deported permanently from Canada on November 13th causing
2me great financial damage and loss. Access to the Public
3Archives of Canada was as essential for my future research
4as access to the PRO in Kew or to those archives in Italy.
5My Lord, this goes, of course, to the damage that has been
6caused to me by this general libel at being called a
7Holocaust denier. That is one proof of the direct and
8immediate cost of the pernicious label "Holocaust
9denier". And the same thing, they made the same attempt
10to get me banned from the United States but failed.
11 Page 54, my Lord. I now come to Macmillan's
12final stab in the back. The hand on the blade was
13Macmillan's but the blade hade been forged and
14fashioned by all the Defendants in this courtroom, and by
15their hidden collaborators overseas.
16 On July 4th 1992, as this Court knows, I had
17returned Moscow with the missing entries of the Goebbels
18Diaries exclusively in my possession, having gone there on
19behalf of The Sunday Times. This hard-earned triumph
20caught my opponents unawares. Newspapers revealed that
21the Anti-Defamation League and its Canadian collaborator,
22the League of Human Rights, sent immediate secret letters
23to Andrew Neil at The Sunday Times demanding that he
24repudiate their contract. On Sunday, 5th, the London
25Sunday newspapers were full of the scoop - and also with
26hostile comment. On Monday, July 6th, The Independent
1newspaper reported under the headlines "Jews attack
2publisher of Irving book", that a UK body which it
3identified as "the Yad Vashim Trust" with which we, of
4course, were we familiar, was piling pressure on to
5Macmillan's to abandon its contract with me to publish
6Goebbels, failing which they would urge booksellers not to
7stock or promote it.
8 Macmillans finally took fright that same day, as
9I only now know. After their directors inquired, July 6th
101992, in an internal memo, how many of my books were still
11in their stocks, and having been given totals of several
12thousand copies of all three volumes of my Hitler
13biography, representing a value of several hundred
14thousand pounds, my own editor, Roland Philipps, on July
156th issued the secret order reading: "Please arrange for
16the remaining stock of [David Irving's Hitler biographies]
17to be destroyed. Many thanks". Book burning. They
18prepared a "draft announcement", but it was not released.
19Although still a Macmillan author, I was not told. The
20royalties due to me on the sale of those books were books
21were lost and destroyed with them. The Defendants'
22campaign to destroy my legitimacy as an historian, of
23which the book published by the Defendants became an
24integral part, had thus reached its climax.
25 My Lord, I now pass over the next pages to page
1 The same thing happened in Australia. I spoke
2in the Munich. Final paragraph: Opponents released --
3I am sorry, yes. Opponents released to Australia
4television the heavily edited version of Michael Schmidt's
51991 video tape of me addressing the crowd at Halle about
6which we have heard from Mr Rampton this morning, the Sieg
7Haels and the rest of it. As edited, it omitted my
8visible and audible rebuke to a section of the crowd for
9chanting Hitler slogans. Grotesque libels about me
10swamped the Australian press, printed by various
11organisations including the New South Wales Board of
12Deputies and various newspapers. One example was an
13article by a lecturer in politics. He wrote: "Irving has
14a history of exciting neoNazi and skinhead groups in
15Germany which had burned migrant hostels and killed people
16... Irving has frequently spoken in Germany at rallies...
17under the swastika flag ... himself screaming the Nazi
18salute..." This is how these stories begin.
19Unsurprisingly, Australia then banned me too. I was t6 be
20refused a visa, they announced, on February 8th 1993 as
21I was a "Holocaust denier". They had thus adopted the
22phrase that the Second Defendant, Professor Lipstadt,
23prides herself in having invented.
24 This new and very damaging ban on visiting
25Australia made it impossible for me to work again in the
26National Library of Australia in Canberra. At great
1personal expense I appealed to the Australian Federal
2Court. The Court declared the Minister's refusal of a
3visa illegal. The government in Canberra therefore
4changed the law in February 1994 to keep me out. We note
5from Professor Lipstadt's own discovery that the
6immigration minister faxed the decision to keep me out
7direct to one of her source agencies that same afternoon.
8The same kind of thing happened.
9 In July 1994, as the resulting fresh legal
10actions which I started against the Australian government
11still raged, the Second Defendant was invited by
12Australian organisations, all expenses paid to visit their
13country; she was hired to tour Australia, and to slander
14my name and my reputation and add her voice to the
15campaign to have me refused entry. The court, my Lord,
16you will probably remember the Australian TV video which
17I showed entitled "The Big Lie" in the early days.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes.
19 MR IRVING: Broadcast in July 1994, it showed both the expert
20witness, Professor van Pelt, and Mr Fred Leuchter. It
21showed Fred Leuchter standing on the roof of crematorium
22No. II, about which we are going to hear more, crematorium
23No. II at Auschwitz which van Pelt declared to be the
24centre of the Nazi genocide, and the Second Defendant
25being interviewed while still in Australia (and refusing
26once again to debate with the revisionists, just as she
1has obstinately refused to go into the witness stand here
2and be questioned). Thus I found myself excluded from
3Australia. We have had now Germany, Canada, South Africa,
4Australia, New Zealand as well, I lost the ability to
5visit my hundreds of friends down under and my own
6daughter too, who is an Australian citizen; and I lost all
7the bookshop sales that this ban implied in Australia -
8where my Churchill biography had hit the No. 1 spot in the
9best seller lists earlier.
10 Over the page: My lecturing engagements in the
11British Isles came under similar attack. I had often
12spoken to universities and debating societies, including
13the Oxford and Cambridge Unions, in the past, but now in
14one month, in October 1993, when I was invited to speak to
15prestigious bodes at three major Irish universities, I
16found all three invitations cancelled under pressure and
17threat of local Jewish and anti-fascist organisations.
18The irony will not elude the court that these Defendants,
19on the one hand, have claimed by way of defence that
20I speak only to the far right and neo-Nazi element, as
21they describe it, and yet it turns out that their own
22associates are the people who have done their damnedest to
23make it impossible for many others to invite me.
24 The Second Defendant, Deborah Lipstadt, had
25meanwhile made progress with her book. She told her
26publisher that she had written a certain statement with
1the marketing people in mind. In other words, sometimes
2money mattered more than content, in my submission.
3 She had revealed in September 1991 in a letter:
4"I have also spoken to people in England who have a large
5cache of material on David Irving's conversion to denial".
6We do not know who the people are, but we can, of course,
7readily suspect who in this case those people were. She
8is once again not presenting herself for
9cross-examination, so there are many things we cannot ask
10her about, including and I would have asked her, in fact,
11most tactfully the reasons why she was refused tenure at
12the University of California and moved downstream to the
13lesser university, in my submission, in Atlanta where she
14now teaches religion.
15 In the light of Mr Rampton's strictures on my
16now famous little ditty -- your Lordship will remember the
17little ditty which I am supposed to have hummed to my nine
18month old daughter, the racist ditty, which went around
19the press because Mr Rampton issued a press release --
20supposedly urging my nine month old little girl not to
21marry outside her own people, I should also have wanted to
22ask questions of Professor Lipstadt's views on race had
23she gone into the witness box. We know that she has
24written papers, and delivered many fervent lectures, on
25the vital importance of people marrying only within their
26own race. Quotation: ("We know what we fight
1against...", she wrote, "intermarriage and Israel-bashing,
2but what is it we fight for?") She has attracted, in
3fact, much criticism from many in her own community for
4her implacable stance against mixed marriages, marrying
5outside their own race. In one book Professor Lipstad
6quotes a Wall Street Journal interview with a Conservative
7rabbi, Jack Moline, whom she called "very brave" for
8listing 10 things that Jewish parents should say to their
9children: "No. 1 on his list", she wrote (in fact it was
10No. 3) "was 'I expect you to marry Jews'." She considered
11that to be very brave. My one little ditty which I hummed
12to my nine month old daughter, Jessica, was a perhaps
13tasteless joke. Professor Lipstadt's repeated
14denunciation of mixed marriages addressed to adults was
16 Professor Lipstad accuses me of error or
17falsification, but is apparently unable to spot a fake
18even at a relatively close range. She admitted (in a
19recent interview with Forward) that she used memoirs of
20the spurious Auschwitz survivor Benjamin Wilkomirski in
21her teaching of the Holocaust to her defenceless students,
22according to Professor Peter Novick who has written a book
23on this. Those "memoirs" have now been exposed,
24worldwide, as fraudulent. Wilkomirski was never anywhere
25near Auschwitz. In fact, he was in Switzerland. When it
26turned out that Wilkomirski have never been near the camp
1or in Poland for that matter, but had spent the war years
2in comfort living with his adopted Swiss family, she
3acknowledged that this "might complicate matters
4somewhat", but she insisted that the Wilkomirski "memoirs"
5would still be "powerful" as a novel. It may seem unjust
6to your Lordship that it is I who have had to answer this
7person's allegation that I distort and manipulate
9 We have Professor Lipstadt's handwritten notes,
10however, in the rather meagre discovery, evidently
11prepared for a talk delivered to the Anti-Defamation
12League in Palm Beach, Florida, in early 1994, which again
13is meagre but substantive evidence of her connection with
14the Anti-Defamation League. In these, if I read her
15handwriting correctly - and she appears to be relying on
16something Lord Bullock had just said - she states that my
17aim seems to be to de-demonize Hitler; and that I had said
18that Roosevelt, Hitler and Churchill were all equally
19criminal. This is hardly "exonerating" any of them.
20Summarising Hitler's War (the 1977 edition) she calls me
21merely an "historian with a revisionist bent" which is
22rather like AJP Taylor - and she adds, and this seems
23significant - "Irving denies that Hitler was responsible
24for the murder of European Jewry. Rather, he claims that
25Himmler was responsible. But he does not deny its
26occurrence. Had she stuck with that view, of course, of
1my writings, which is a very fair summary of my views,
2both then and now, she and we would not find ourselves
4 But she was led astray, my Lord. She fell in
5with bad company, or associates. These things happen. We
6know that, in conducting her research for the book, she
7spoke with the Board of Deputies, the Institute of Jewish
8Affairs, the Anti-defamation League and other such worthy
9bodies, since she thanks all of them in her introduction.
10 My Lord, I have given a list of the bodies she
11thanks in an affidavit which is contained in my bundle
12based on the introduction to her book.
13 Some time in 1992 her book was complete in its
14first draft, and Professor Lipstadt sent it to the people
15who were paying her, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
16We do not know what was in the book, since I cannot
17question the second Defendant and she has not disclosed
18the early draft, with Professor Yehuda Bauer's scribbles
19on it, as he said, in her sworn list of documents. The
20early draft was clearly discoverable but it has not been
21provided to us. We do know however what was not in it.
22We know that there was no mention of his Hizbollah and
23Hamas and Louis Farrakhan and the November 1992 terrorists
24in Stockholm, or of the lie about my speaking on the same
25platform with them. In fact, we also know that in this
26first draft I was merely mentioned in passing. This is a
1book about denying Holocaust and I am only mentioned in
2passing. This is evident from the letter which Professor
3Yehuda Bauer wrote back to her, congratulating her on
4November 27th 1992. Bauer complained that the book lacked
5the "worldwide perspective" and said, "Irving is
6mentioned, but not that he is the mainstay of Holocaust
7denial today in Western Europe" which is where all the
8misery then began of course.
9 Somehow therefore I had to be shoe horned into
10the text before publication. Professor Bauer urged her
11too not to write things inadvertently that might convince
12the reader that there was something to what revisionists
13or deniers said, although that is hardly a true scholar's
14method, to suppress mention of opposing arguments. In a
15letter to Anthony Lerman, of the Institute of Jewish
16Jewish Affairs, (the same Mr Lerman who would spread later
17the lying word that I had supplied the trigger mechanism
18for the Oklahoma City bomb) Lipstadt revealed that there
19was an earlier incarnation of the book.
20 Now, that earlier incarnation, to use her words,
21has also not been disclosed in her sworn list of
22documents. She had been ordered to swear an affidavit on
23her list, my Lord, which is why there is a sworn list,
24because of discrepancies previously. When I made a
25subsequent complaint about deficient discovery, her
26solicitors reminded me that I could not go behind her
1affidavit under the rules until she presented herself for
2cross-examination, which I think is, if I may say so, my
3Lord, deceptive. Had they intended not calling this
4witness to the witness stand, they should not have written
5that to me. This chance of cross-examining the witness
6has been denied to me.
7 Professors Lipstadt spent of that last month of
81992 therefore putting me into the book, whereas I had
9only previously been mentioned, and thus putting herself
10into this court room today. They were the weeks after the
11spectacular success of the global campaign to destroy my
12legitimacy, which culminated with getting me deported in
13manacles from Canada on November 13th, 1992.
14 "I am just finishing up the book" she wrote to
15Lerman on December 18th "and, as you can well imagine,
16David Irving figures into it quite prominently". She
17pleaded with Lerman to provide, indeed to fax to her
18urgently, materials from "your files". Your Lordship may
19think that this haste to wield the hatchet compares poorly
20with the kind of in-depth years long shirt sleeved
21research which I conducted on my biographical subjects.
22"I think that he (in other words Irving) is one of the
23most dangerous figures around", she added, pleading the
24urgency. It was a spectacular epiphany, this court might
25think, given that only three weeks earlier the manuscript
26barely mentioned me, as Bauer himself had complained.
1From being barely mentioned to being one of the most
2dangerous figures around.
3 Lerman faxed his materials to her from London a
4few days later. We do not know precisely what, and it is
5a complete extent, as here too the defendants' discovery
6is only fragmentary, and these items were provided to me,
7again only in response to a summons.
8 That is an outline of the damage, and the
9people, including specifically the Defendants in this
10action, who were behind it. Mr Rampton suggested at a
11very early stage that I had brought all of this on my
12myself, that I even deserved it. He was talking about the
13hate wreath that was sent to me upon the death of my
14oldest daughter. We shall see.
15 My Lord, I now come to Auschwitz Concentration
17 Auschwitz has been a football of politicians and
18statesmen ever since World War II. The site has become,
19like the Holocaust itself, an industry, a big business in
20the most tasteless way, the Auschwitz site. The area,
21I am informed, is overgrown with fast food restaurants,
22souvenir and trinket shops, motels and the like. As
23Mr Rampton rightly says, I have never been to Auschwitz
24and Mr Rampton knows the reason why. The Auschwitz
25authorities said they would not allow me to visit the site
26and they would not allow me into their archives, and they
1have every reason to know why they do not want to allow a
2David Irving to get his hands on their papers. Under
3Prime Minister Josef Cyrankiewicz (who had been prisoner
4number 62,993) it was known at its opening in 1948 as a
5monument to the martyrdom of the Polish and other
7 Auschwitz was overrun by the Red Army in January
81945. The last prisoner had received the tattooed
9number 202,499. Informed by Colonel General Heinz
10Guderian, the chief of the German Army general staff, that
11the Russians had captured Auschwitz, Hitler is recorded by
12the stenographers as saying merely "yes". The court might
13find it significant that he did not prick up his ears and
14say something like, "Herr Himmler, I hope you made sure
15the Russians will not find the slightest trace of what we
16have been up to". (Or even, "I hope you managed to get
17those holes in the roof slab of crematoria No. II cemented
18over before you blew it up".) I will shortly explain the
19significance of that. When the name of SS General Hans
20Kammler, the architect of the concentration camps, was
21mentioned to him a few days later by Goebbels, it was
22evident that even Kammler's name meant little to Hitler
23because Goebbels commented on the fact.
24 How many had died at Auschwitz? We still do not
25know with certainty, because the tragic figure has become
26an object of politics, too. Professor Arno Mayer, the
1Professor of European history at the University of
2Princeton, a scholar of considerably greater renommee than
3Professor Evans, and himself a Jew, expressed the view in
4one book that most of the victims of the camp died of
5exhaustion and epidemics. He said: "From 1942 to 1945
6more Jews died, at least in Auschwitz and probably
7everywhere else, of 'natural' causes of death than of
9 The Russians who captured the camp did not at
10first make any mention in their news reports of gas
11chambers. There is a famous report published in the first
12day or two in February 1945 in Pravda. Moreover, as we
13saw on the newsreel, which I showed on the first day of
14this trial, even the Poles, with access to all the
15records, claimed only that "altogether nearly 300,000
16people from the most different nations died in the
17Auschwitz concentration camp". This is the news reel
18trial of the trial of the Auschwitz officials. "300,000
19people from the most different nations died in the
20Auschwitz concentration camp". It concluded that the camp
21now stood as a monument of shame to the lasting memory of
22its 300,000 victims. In both cases gassing was not
23mentioned. The New York Times quoted the same figure
24300,000 when the trial began in 1947. The figure
25gradually grew however. The Russians set up an inquiry
26including some very well-known names, including the
1experts who had examined the Nazi mass graves at Katyn,
2and even the notorious Lysenko. They announced that 4
3million had been murdered at Auschwitz. Under the Polish
4communists, a monument to "4 million dead", with those
5words on it, was duly erected, a number which was adhered
6to until the 1990s even under Franciszek Piper, one of the
7later (but still communist) directors of the Auschwitz
8State Archives. After the communist regime ended that
9figure was brought down to 1.5 million, and then to
10750,000 by the acknowledged expert Jean-Claude Pressac.
11The Defendants' own expert Peter Longerich spoke of one
12million deaths there from all causes, and then in response
13to cross-examination by myself and to your Lordship's
14enquiries, Dr Longerich confirmed that he included all non
15homicidal deaths, deaths "from other causes", including
16epidemics and exhaustion in that overall figure of 1
18 Perhaps I should pause there and say that these
19figures seem appalling figures but, if it is one million
20or 300,000 or whatever the figure is, each of them means
21that many multiples of one individual. I never forget in
22anything I have said or written or done the appalling
23suffering that has been inflicted on people in the camps
24like Auschwitz. I am on the side of the innocents of this
26 As for the overall death roll of the Holocaust,
1what meaning can one attach to the figures? The
2International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg found that
3the policy pursued resulted in the killing of 6 million
4Jews, of which 4 million were killed in the extermination
5institutions, but the 6 million figure derives, as the
6American chief prosecutor Jackson recorded in his diary in
7June 1945, from a back of the envelope calculation by the
8American Jewish leaders with whom he met in New York at
9that time. Professor Raul Hilberg puts the overall
10Holocaust figure at one million or less. Gerald
11Reitlinger had the figure at 4.6 million, of which he said
12about 3 million were conjectural, as it was not known how
13many Jews had escaped into the unoccupied part of the
14Soviet Union. The Israeli prime minister's office, we are
15told by Norman Finkelstein, recently stated that there
16were still nearly one million living survivors.
17 There are doubts not only about the precise
18figures but about specific events. The same Nuremberg
19tribunal ruled on October 1st 1946 that the Nazis had
20attempted to utilise the fat from bodies of victims in the
21commercial manufacture of soap. In 1990 historian Shmuel
22Krakowski of Yad Vashem announced to the world's press
23that that too had been a Nazi propaganda lie. Gradually
24the wartime stories have been dismantled. As more
25documents have been found, widely stated propositions have
26been found to be doubtful. For a long time the confident
1public perception was that the Wannsee protocol of the
2January 20th 1942 meeting at the Interpol headquarters in
3Berlin, Wannsee, recorded the actual order to exterminate
4the European Jews. Yehuda Bauer, the director now of Yad
5Vashem, the world's premier Holocaust research institution
6in Israel -- one of the correspondents of the second
7Defendant you remember -- has stated quite clearly: "The
8public still repeats time after time the silly story that
9at Wannsee the extermination of the Jews was arrived at".
10In his opinion Wannsee was a meeting but "hardly a
11conference", and he even said: "Little of what was said
12there was executed in detail". Despite this, your
13Lordship has had to listen to this "silly story" all over
14again from the expert witnesses.
15 Surely, my critics say, there must now be some
16evidence of a Hitler order.
17 Back in 1961 Professor Raul Hilberg, one of
18Yehuda Bauer's great rivals for the laureate, one of my
19correspondents, asserted in "The Destruction of the
20European Jews", his book, that there had been two such
21orders, one in the spring of 1941, and the other soon
22after. By 1985, after I had corresponded with him and I
23had begun voicing my own doubts, Hilberg was back
24pedalling. Hilberg went methodically through his new
25edition of his book, excising the allegation of a Hitler
26order. It is not as though he did not mention the Hitler
1order. He actually went through a book, taking every
2reference to it out. "In the new edition", as Professor
3Christopher Browning, another of our expert witnesses here
4for the defence, who testified before this court, said,
5"all references in the text to a Hitler decision or
6Hitler order for the Final Solution had been
7systematically excised. Buried at the bottom of a single
8footnote stands the solitary reference: 'Chronology and
9circumstances point to a Hitler decision before the summer
10ended (1941)'". "In the new edition", Browning repeats,
11scandalized, "decisions were not made and orders were not
12given". Your Lordship will find my exchange with
13Professor Browning as to whether he had indeed written
14those words in 1986 on day 17. You will find too that he
15regretted that he could not recall the events clearly of
1615 years ago, which invited a rather obvious riposte from
17me about the probably similar memory deficiencies in the
18eyewitnesses on whom he had on occasions relied.
19 The director of the Yad Vashem archives has
20stated that most survivors' testimonies are unreliable.
21There is a quotation from him. "Many", he writes, "were
22never in the places where they claim to have witnessed
23atrocities, while others relied on second-hand information
24given them by friends or passing strangers". It is the
25phenomenon that I have referred to as cross-pollination.
26Your Lordship may have been as startled as I, I confess,
1was, upon learning the degree to which the case for the
2mass gassings at Auschwitz relies on eyewitness evidence,
3rather than on any firmer sources. Your Lordship will
4remember perhaps the exchange I had with Professor Donald
5Watt, professor emeritus at the London School of
6Economics, a distinguished diplomatic historian, early on
7in the trial, about the value of different categories of
8evidence. I will just summarize that. I asked him, I
9said, Professor I was not going to ask you about----
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY: He said it all depends, did he not, really?
11Is that unfair as a summary?
12 MR IRVING: Well, my Lord, I draw your eyes straight down to
13the second line from the bottom. Professor Watt answers
14all of that, saying:
15 The Bletchley Park intercepts, in so far as they
16are complete, are always regarded as the most reliable
17because there is no evidence that the dispatcher was aware
18that his messages could be decoded by us (by the British),
19and therefore he would put truth in them".
20 This supports my view, my Lord, that eyewitness
21evidence is less credible than forensic evidence and the
22Bletchley Park intercepts. I do not completely ignore
23eyewitness evidence, but I feel entitled to discount it
24when it is contradicted by the more reliable evidence
25which should then prevail.
26 I mention the forensic evidence and that brings
1us seamlessly to the Leuchter report.
2 I am criticised by the Defendants for having
3relied initially on what is called the Leuchter report,
41988. At the time they levelled their criticism at me the
5Defendants appeared to have been unaware that subsequent
6and more able investigations were conducted by both
7American and Polish researchers. The tests were in other
9 First, the Leuchter report. In 1988 I was
10introduced by defence counsel at the Canadian trial of
11Ernst Zundel to the findings made by a reputable firm of
12American forensic analysts of samples extracted from the
13fabric of various buildings at Auschwitz and Birkenau by
14Fred Leuchter, who was at that time a professional
15American execution technology consultant. These and his
16investigations at the Maidanek site formed the backbone of
17his engineering report. Since there have been tendentious
18statements about why the Leuchter report was not admitted
19in evidence at that trial in Canada I have studied the
20transcripts of that trial. It emerges that engineering
21reports are not generally admissible under Canadian rules
22of evidence unless both parties consent. In this case the
23Crown did not consent. As Mr Justice Thomas explained,
24"I get engineering reports all the time (that is in civil
25cases). That does not make them admissible, because they
26have prepared reports. They (the witnesses) go in the
1box, they are qualified experts and they testify". So the
2non-admission of the report by Mr Justice Thomas was no
3reflection on the worth of the report or on the
4qualifications of the witness.
5 My Lord, I have to go in some detail into the
6Leuchter report because of the criticisms levelled at me
7for having been swayed by it.
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. I do not disagree with that.
9 MR IRVING: Mr Leuchter testified on April 20th and 21st 1988
10as an expert in gas chamber technology. He had inspected
11the three sites (Auschwitz/Birkenau and Maidanek) in
12February 1988 and he had taken samples which were
13subsequent sent for analysis by a qualified analytical
14chemist in the United States, a Dr James Roth of Cornell
15University, who was not told where the samples had come
16from. His firm Alpha Laboratories, were told on the test
17certificates only that the samples were from brickwork.
18Mr Justice Thomas ruled that Leuchter would give oral
19evidence but that the report itself should not be filed.
20He held further that Mr Leuchter was not a chemist or a
21toxicologist, which are findings, of course, that he is
22quite entitled to make, but he agreed that Mr Leuchter was
23an engineer because he had made himself an engineer in a
24very limited field.
25 A summary of the rest of the judge's findings
26was that Leuchter was not capable in law of giving the
1expert opinion that there were never any gassings or
2exterminations carried on in the facilities from which he
3took the samples. For the same reasons he was not capable
4of testifying regarding the results of the analysis,
5because he was not a toxicologist in other words. He was
6restricted to testifying as to the actual extraction of
7the samples from the buildings and his own observations on
8the feasibility of the buildings that he had examined
9being used as gas chambers.
10 So the Defendant was wrong to write on page 164
11of her book, "The judge ruled that Leuchter could not
12serve as an expert witness on the construction and
13function of the gas chambers". To give evidence in a
14criminal trial Mr Leuchter must have been accepted as an
15expert witness. Further, Professor Lipstadt stated on
16pages 164 of her book, and 165, "The judge's finding as to
17Leuchter's suitability to comment on questions of
18engineering was unequivocal". In fact, the judge's
19findings referred only to his lack of qualifications to
20testify on the results of the laboratory tests for cyanide
21and iron, because that was Dr Roth's area, and he himself
22(Roth) gave testimony on those matters. On page 169
23Professor Lipstadt insists: "The exposure to the elements
24lessen the presence of the hydrogen cyanide ... Nor did
25Leuchter seem to consider that the building had been
26exposed to the elements for more than 40 years so that
1cyanide gas residue could have been obliterated. He also
2took samples from a floor that had been washed regularly
3by museum staff". Dr Roth however testified under oath
4that the formation of Prussian blue, which is a cyanide
5compound, was an accumulative reaction, that it augmented
6with each exposure to the gas, and that it did not
7normally disappear -- in other words, could not be just
8washed away -- unless physically removed by sand blasting
9or grinding down.
10 Roth seems then to have changed his mind, to
11judge by the television film "MR DEATH" which I believe is
12shortly to be shown on Channel 4, and upon which film both
13I and learned counsel in the current action partially
14rely. Zundel's counsel comments, "He (Roth) obviously is
15frightened now", and no wonder, considering what
16subsequently was inflicted on Mr Leuchter. Your Lordship
17will remember that, in order to destroy Roth's absurd
18argument, which was quoted to the court by Mr Rampton,
19learned counsel, that the Prussian blue stain would have
20penetrated only a few microns into the brickwork.
21I showed a photograph of the stain penetrating right
22through the brick work to the outside face of one of the
23cyanide fumigation chambers, where it has been exposed to
24sun, wind and rain for over 50 years, and where it is
25still visible, as deep and blue as ever today.
26Crematorium II has been protected from these outside
1elements. It is possible to crawl beneath the famous
2roof, the one we were hearing about, the one with the no
3holes. You can crawl beneath it even now -- about which
4roof I shall have more to say -- but neither Jan Sehn,
5nor Fred Leuchter, nor James Roth nor Germar Rudolf, nor
6any of the subsequent investigations have found any
7significant traces of cyanide compounds present in the
8fabric of this building, despite the eyewitness accounts
9of that same chamber having been used for the gassing of
10half a million people with cyanide. Moreover, the wood
11grain of the original wooden formwork (or moulds) can
12still be seen on the face of the concrete, which is
13evidence that it has not been sandblasted or grounded
15 Now, my Lord, this takes us to the famous roof
16of Leichenkeller No. 1 of crematorium No. II at
18 I referred earlier to the expert witness on
19Auschwitz and Birkenau in this case, Professor Robert van
20Pelt. He has made unequivocal statements both here and
21elsewhere about crematorium II at Birkenau. To him it was
22the factory of death, the mass gassing chamber of
23Birkenau. He did not mince his language. In the new
24television film MR DEATH we saw him and we heard him, as
25the film camera showed Fred Leuchter descending into the
26hole which was broken post-war through the collapsed
1concrete roof slab and reinforcing bars of Leichenkeller I
2(morgue No. 1) of crematorium II and we heard him uttering
3these words, quoting off the sound track:
4 "Crematorium II is the most lethal building of
5Auschwitz. In the 2,500 square feet of this one room,
6more people lost their lives than any other place on this
7planet. 500,000 people were killed. If you would draw a
8map of human suffering, if you created a geography of
9atrocity, this would be the absolute centre."
10 The court will recall that on ninth day of this
11action I cross-examined this witness most closely about
12this statement and I offered him a chance to change his
13mind about the pivotal importance of crematorium II and
14its underground Leichenkeller No. I (morgue No. 1) the
15chamber which van Pelt alleged had been a mass gassing
17 IRVING: Very well. You say: This is quoting
18him from his report ----
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You need not read the whole of it. He
20confirms that it is Leichenkeller I at crematorium II
21where he says the 500,000 were killed.
22 MR IRVING: Thank you, my Lord. The expert witness could
23hardly have been clearer in his answer.
24 At page 53, I then asked him to identify the
25buildings referred to on the aerial photographs of
26Birkenau and crematorium II, so that there could later be
1no doubt as to which precise building he had just agreed
2was the factory of death at Auschwitz,
4 The great problem about accepting that this
5building was an instrument for mass murder is that the
6evidence produced by Professor van Pelt relies on three
7"legs", if I can borrow Mr Rampton's word, a handful of
8eyewitnesses, a few architectural drawings, and a slim
9file of documents.
10 The eyewitnesses, in my submission, have turned
12 MR RAMPTON: No, I am sorry, that is one error that cannot be
13allowed to pass. There is a fourth leg, forensic chemical
14analysis both in 1945, 1988 and 1994.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Just to elaborate that, of Leichenkeller I
16and crematorium II?
17 MR RAMPTON: Yes, Leichenkeller I at crematorium II by the
18Krakov forensic laboratory in December 1945, which found
19traces of cyanide on the ventilation covers by
20Mr Leuchter's analysts.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Ventilation covers from where?
22 MR RAMPTON: From Leichenkeller I in crematorium II. If one
23looks at the report, it is as clear as anything. Leuchter
24himself, of course, in 1988, and Professor Markowitz at
25Krakov in 1994.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Thank you.
1 MR RAMPTON: They are all in the evidence.
2 MR IRVING: My Lord, I will ask your Lordship when the time
3comes to look at that forensic evidence and to ask
4yourself the obvious question, what is the proof that
5these items came from that building?
6 MR RAMPTON: Leuchter is certainly proof, because Mr Irving
7relies on him.
8 MR IRVING: Then we have to look at the actual figures and the
9concentrations. If I can now continue with my three legs,
10my three-legged argument?
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, do. Eyewitnesses?
12 MR IRVING: The eyewitnesses have turned out to be liars,
13particularly those who testified to the SS guards opening
14manhole covers on top of the flat roof of Leichenkeller
15No. I (mortuary No. 1), and tipping tins of Zyklon B
16pellets in through the holes. One witness was David
17Olere, an artist who drew sketches years later in Paris,
18to which Mr Rampton has also referred, obviously intending
19to sell them. His sketches show flames and smoke belching
20from the crematorium chimney of crematorium No. II, which
21goes purely to the credibility of the witness, which was
22quite impossible. He portrays the victims. Your Lordship
23will remember that I asked Professor van Pelt to calculate
24the length, the path, from the furnace doors to the top of
25the chimney, and how long that flame would have had to
26be. He portrays the victims of the Nazi killers mostly as
1nubile young females, all naked and sketched in a
2pornographic way, often clutching naked teenaged children
3to their breasts. It was Olere I invite the court to
4remember, who told Jean-Claude Pressac that the SS made
5sausage in the crematoria out of human flesh (a passage
6which Mr Van Pelt did not inform us of in his expert
7report). Another witness is Ada Bimko, who proved at the
8Belsen trial that she too had lied. Entering another gas
9chamber building at Auschwitz she said she had "noticed
10two pipes which I was told contained the gas. There were
11two huge metal containers containing gas". She evidently
12did not know that the "gas" supposed to have been used,
13Zyklon-B, was actually in pellet form, not cylinders.
14Distorting her account too, van Pelt omitted also this
15part of her testimony. Dr Bendel, another of van Pelt's
16eyewitnesses, stated that at crematorium IV the people
17crowded into the gas chamber found the ceilings so low
18that the impression was given that the roof was falling on
19their heads. This too was untrue, as the court has seen
20how high these ceilings were in the computer-generated
21"walk through". The court will find that in my
22cross-examination of van Pelt I destroyed the worth of
23each supposed eyewitness after eyewitness in the same way,
24if I can summarize it like that.
25 Let us first look for those holes that they
26talked about. My Lord, your Lordship will remember that
1I had the big photograph of that roof photographed from a
2helicopter quite recently, standing here for some days or
3weeks. The roof pillars beneath the roof were blown up in
41945, and the reinforced concrete slab pancaked downwards
5into the morgue basement, starred but otherwise intact.
6By the word "starred" I mean what happens to a pane of
7reinforced glass that has been hit by a stone.
8 Van Pelt suggested that the Zyklon-B
9introduction holes in the roof of Leichenkeller I were not
10much larger in diameter than tennis balls, but the
11evidence of his eyewitnesses, Henry Tauber and Michal
12Kula, was that they were closer to the size of manholes --
13"70 centimetres square". Kula testified that the wire
14mesh columns that he had made were of that cross section
15and three metres (ten feet) tall. One witness said that
16the concrete covers on top of the roof above these holes
17had to be lifted off "with both hands," with two hands.
18As the ceiling height in Leichenkeller I was 2.40 metres,
1960 centimetres of each column, which is 3 metres tall,
20would have had to extend through the holes in the concrete
21ceiling with about six inches poking up outside. As
22Professor van Pelt admits in his report, the part I was
23about to read out when your Lordship stopped me, there is
24no trace of those holes in the roof today. I am sorry, I
25was wrong. He did say that. He says it later on.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: What did I stop you reading?
1 MR IRVING: You did not. I made a mistake, my Lord. As he
2admits in his report, there is no trace of those holes in
3the roof today. The underside of that roof, which can be
4inspected and photographed from beneath even today, is
5intact. Even if one could lose sight of the much smaller
6three inch diameter holes in the pancaked concrete roof of
7which van Pelt spoke, and I do not accept that they were
8that small, one could not possibly have lost sight of four
9holes as large as manholes. Those holes would be
10perfectly obvious today on the ground that Auschwitz to
11any observer using the naked eye, without the slightest
12possible doubt as to their location, because, of course,
13Professor van Pelt told us where each hole was supposed to
14be. It was right next to the supporting columns.
15 Professor van Pelt accepts that those holes are
16not in that roof slab now.
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am not sure that is right, is it? I think
18what he says was that the state of the collapsed roof is
19so poor now that you simply cannot see where those holes
20would have been if they were there, which is a slightly
22 MR RAMPTON: Not only that, my Lord. I sit here, I listen to,
23quite frankly, a continuous misrepresentation of the
24evidence of my witness.
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Let us concentrate on this one.
26 MR RAMPTON: I will, but this is serious. Van Pelt said a
1number of things. He said, first of all, the fragmentary
2condition of the roof prevents any kind of assessment one
3way or the other. Then he says, anyway, even if it did
4not, it is the wrong part of the roof. The third, of
5course, is that there is no evidence on Mr Irving's side
6of the court one way or the other. Mr Irving has not been
8 MR IRVING: May I now continue with preferably fewer
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY: No, I think that is not fair. Mr Rampton
11I think has been restrained.
12 MR IRVING: My Lord, restraint is what I showed.
13 MR JUSTICE GRAY: There are the odd things which I have noticed
14which I do not think are quite borne out. I think the
15best thing is not to interrupt you, but that is quite an
16important misstatement of van Pelt's evidence.
17 MR IRVING: I will come to the alleged misstatement in a
18moment. Of course, I sat with the utmost restraint this
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You did.
21 MR IRVING: -- while numerous things were said. My Lord, I put
22to your Lordship at the time photographs of the underside
23of that roof. To say that the underside of that roof is
24fragmented is a gross distortion of what one could see
25with one's own eyes. The underside of that roof was as
26pristine as the concrete which is in this room today,
1every inch of the underside of that roof which can be
3 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I remember the photograph quite well and
4quite how much of the roof it shows and which bit of the
5roof, it is impossible, I think, on the evidence to say.
6 MR IRVING: I did, as your Lordship will know, make one very
7grand offer and very generous offer to the Defendants in
8this case saying, "Come back with photographs of those
9holes and I will stop the case within 24 hours because my
10position will be indefensible". I made that offer, not
11once, but twice. It is in the transcript. They did not
12take it up, and that would have saved ----
13 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Press on.
14 MR IRVING: It reminds me of the early days in this action when
15every time I was making a killer point, Mr Rampton was up
16and it is happening again. Professor van Pelt: In his
17expert report, and for this honesty I give him full
18credit, he writes: "Today, these four small holes" --
19this is his expert report which he provided in this case
20-- he did not have to write this, my Lord, but he put it
21in and it is a great testimony to his honesty, I think -
22"that connected the wire-mesh columns and the chimneys
23cannot be observed in the ruined remains of the concrete
24slab. Yet does this mean they were never there? We know
25that after the cessation of the gassings in the fall of
261944 all the gassing equipment was removed, which implies
1both the wire-mesh columns and the chimneys. What would
2have remained would have been the four narrow holes and
3the slab. What would have remained would have been the
4four narrow holes and the slab. While there is no
5certainty in this matter, it would have been logical to
6attach at the location where the columns had been some
7formwork at the bottom of the gas chamber ceiling, and
8pour some concrete in the hole and thus restore the
10 That is why I listened with relative patience,
11my Lord, to Mr Rampton's interruption because it very
12largely bears out what I said. The point at which he rose
13to his feet was when I said van Pelt accepted those holes
14are not in that roof slab now. I think that his
15interruption was ill-called for.
16 Professor van Pelt thus asserts, without any
17evidence at all, that late in 1944, with the Russian Army
18winding up to launch their colossal final invasion only a
19few miles away on the River Vistula, the Nazi-mass
20murderers would remove the "Zyklon introduction columns"
21and then fill in the holes in the ceiling, as he says, to
22"restore the slab" (before dynamiting the pillars
23supporting it anyway). He again asserted when
24I cross-examined him on January 25th as follows: "It would
25have been logical to attach", he then reads out what he
26said, "pour some concrete in the hole and thus restore the
2 How would this have been more logical than
3completely removing the roof of Leichenkeller 1 just as
4the Nazis had removed the roof of Leichenkeller 2,
5identified by Professor van Pelt as the "undressing
6rooms", as shown in the aerial photographs taken on
7December 21st 1944 that one can see on page 15 of this
8book "The Holocaust Revisited", the book published by the
9CIA. The originals of this photograph were shown to
10Professor van Pelt in court. I showed them to him. To
11believe his version, we would have to believe that the
12Nazis deliberately created relics, architectural relics,
13of Leichenkeller No. 1 to confound later generations of
14tourists and Holocaust researchers.
15 The fact is that the holes are not there - at
16least they are not visible from a distance of 0 to 4 feet
17or when photographed from the underside of that slab.
18Unable to point them out to us in close up at ground
19level, the Defendants invited us to consider instead
20either their vertical aerial photographs taken from 35,000
21feet up, or a horizontal photograph taken from several
22hundred yards away, past a locomotive, where three (not
23four) unidentified objects are placed irregularly on the
24rooftop (the fourth "object" turns out to be a window on
25the wall behind). The Court will recall what my response
26was to the not unexpected discovery that during building
1works such subjects as barrels of tar were placed on a
2large flat slab, and I will not repeat it here. The
3notion that the high flying plane could have photographed
4an object of 27 centimetres, let alone of tennis ball
5size, protruding from six inches above the ground from
6that roof is quite absurd. The four smudges seen on one
7photograph are evidently many feet long, nothing to do
8with these so-called holes.
9 Your Lordship will remember that on day 11
10I brought into the Court half a dozen very large vertical
11aerial photographs, black and white photographs, taken by
12the Americans or the South African Air Force during 1944,
13and invited Professor van Pelt to find those same smudges
14on that roof, the same dots.
15 Where until this moment he had seen dots on
16another photograph with no difficulty, the witness van
17Pelt now pleaded poor eyesight: ("I have now reached the
18age I need reading glasses", he said, "and I do not have
19them with me. I did not expect this kind of challenge".
20Precisely). Had he used even a microscope, he would not
21have found the dots in the 1944 pictures I showed him.
22Because the holes were not there and are not there, and he
23and the Defendants know it.
24 Even if the Nazi architects who designed the
25building had willingly agreed to the weakening of the roof
26by having makeshift holes cut that size right through the
1slab next to the supporting pillars - I say "makeshift"
2because there is no provision for them in any of the
3architectural drawings that were shown to us - we should
4certainly expect to see those holes now. My Lord, the
5court will recall two things:
6 Firstly, I asked the witness van Pelt if he was
7familiar (in view of the fact that he is not qualified
8architecturally, as it turned out) with the expression
9"fair faced concrete finish". He confirmed that it is
10concrete that has been left untreated. In other words, it
11is not covered with cement or pebble dash or tiling. He
12confirmed also that it is the most expensive such finish
13that an architect can specify because the concrete has to
14be poured right first time because blemishes like holes
15and cavities can never be retouched afterwards. Filling
16in the holes with cement, as van Pelt suggested in an
17extraordinary piece of naivete, would have been evident in
18the concrete face for ever after by differences in general
19appearance, colouring, wear and fracturing; there would
20have been a visible "drying line" as a ring around the
21patch, and the wood grain pattern left by the wooden
22formwork would have been interrupted. Common sense tells
23us all of this as well.
24 The second point is, of course, we photographed
25the underside of that slab and there is no trace of any
26such blemish on the concrete roof's underside, and there
1are supposed to have been four of those filling holes.
2Those holes are a major problem for this entire case.
3 On two occasions I stated a challenge in Court,
4including to the witness van Pelt, as I said earlier.
5I challenged the Defendants to send somebody to Auschwitz
6even now, to scrape the thin layer of gravel and dirt off
7the topside of the roof slab where they "know" the holes
8must be because they know where the pillars - because the
9eyewitnesses agreed they were next to the main columns -
10and bring back a photograph of one of the holes or
11evidence that it had been filled in.
12 If they did, I said, I would abandon my action
13forthwith because my position would have become quite
14indefensible. To my knowledge, the Defendants have not
15attempted this exercise. They know and they knew from the
16outset that I was right about that roof. Their entire
17case on crematorium No. II - the untruth that it was used
18as a factory of death, with SS guards tipping canisters of
19cyanide-soaked pellets into the building through those
20four (non-existent) manholes - has caved in, as surely as
21that flat roof.
22 Accordingly, the eyewitnesses who spoke of those
23holes also lied, or bluffed, and I have called their
24bluff. In the absence of the holes themselves, and minus
25his "eyewitnesses", Professor van Pelt's only remaining
26proofs that Leichenkeller 1 of Crematorium No.II was an
1instrument of mass murder - a factory of death, as he
2said, in which 500,000 Jews were gassed and cremated - are
3these: architectural drawings (rather oddly for a
4"professor of architecture" he calls them blueprints) and
5wartime documents. He confirmed this to your Lordship
6when your Lordship asked.
7 As for the wartime documents, to take them
8first, he referred, for instance, to the - to him,
9sinister requirement that the morgue should be vorgewarmt,
10prewarmed, by a central heating plant.
11In cross-examination I drew his attention to the relevant
12section of the wartime Neufert, which is the architect's
13handbook or building code which was standard for the SS
14architects, which specifies that morgues, mortuaries, must
15have both cooling and central heating facilities to avoid
16damage to the corpses in the kinds of extremes of
17temperature which exist in Central Europe. Document after
18document fell by the wayside in this manner. Mr Rampton
19introduced the timesheet of one humble workman in March
201943, showing him actually concreting "the floor in the
21Gaskammer", the gas chamber. But Birkenau camp was full
22of gas chambers. In his fine facsimile building of the
23camp documents, Jean-Claude Pressac has printed drawing
24No. 801 of November 8th, 1941, for an Entlausungsanlage
25(delousing installation) for the prison camp, right in the
26middle of which is a Gaskammer. He also reproduces
1drawing No. 1293, dated May 9th 1942, of the drainage and
2water supply of the delousing barracks, building BW5b.
3Here too there is a Gaskammer smack in the middle of the
4drawing. So there goes that one too.
5 The real handling capacity -- my Lord, of
6course, we did look at other documents and I am sure your
7Lordship will attend to that particular part of the
8transcript in detail, but I just wanted to give the
9flavour of the problem. The real handling capacity of the
10crematoria is also surprisingly difficult to establish,
11notwithstanding what Mr Rampton said this morning.
12Professor van Pelt produced a histogram on an easel for us
13which showed truly staggering protections of cadavers to
14be cremated in coming years; but on cross-examination the
15witness admitted that the projection was based solely on
16one document, the questionable "crematorium capacities"
17document of June 28th, 1943, and that all else was
18extrapolated backwards from that sheet of paper.
19Mr Rampton said that, as ever, I challenge that document,
20as though I had challenged many other documents. My Lord,
21to my knowledge, I have challenged ----
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. If I may just intervene and say that
23I would find it easier if there were not such an overt
24reaction to what you are saying on the other side of the
26 MR RAMPTON: I am sorry.
1 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, sorry, you got to the Bischoff
3 MR IRVING: The Bischoff document. Professor van Pelt relies
4heavily on this document. My Lord, you will notice that I
5have given all the appropriate footnote references to
6assist you in navigating through the transcripts, and so
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, thank you.
9 MR IRVING: Even if genuine, even if the actual paper itself is
10genuine, the handling figures which this document gives
11for the furnace installation in Crematorium No. II do not
12tally with any of the figures in the specifications
13provided by the manufacturers, the Topf Company, for this
14type of equipment. Furthermore, the document refers to
15some crematoria which were at that time shut down, and to
16others that were due to be taken out of commission, which
17is again a mystifying business.
18 I had shown the Court on the previous day that
19this one page of paper contained not just one or two, but
20four or five, four or even five, bureaucratic
21discrepancies which indicated to me that the document is
22not authentic. It was not just that the year date was
23wrong. Any one of those flaws would normally be enough to
24call its integrity into question: but five such flaws in
25one document, including the wrong rank for the highest man
26in the SS site-construction system, SS Gruppenfuhrer Hans
1Kammler? Professor van Pelt was unable to explain these
2flaws; he had not noticed them. The document was first
3published in East Berlin in the 1950s, and it is now to be
4found in the Auschwitz archives, because it was sent there
5from East Berlin in 1981. That alone is why it now bears
6an Auschwitz archival stamp. It did not originate there,
7but elsewhere. Even if the flaws can be explained, and
8the figures were genuine, there is no indication of how
9such huge numbers of bodies were to be handled within 24
10hours; nor of where the coke was to come from. There is
11no -- logistic problems defeat the document. (There is
12no acceptable evidence that the Auschwitz staff found any
13way of improving on the average coke consumption of 30 kg
14per cadaver achieved by other camps).
15 The bottleneck in the entire crematorium II
16"factory of death" story is however that little freight
17elevator that was installed between that morgue, the
18underground mortuary, Leichenkeller No. 1, as in any such
19state-of-the-art crematorium, to haul the bodies up from
20the basement-level morgue up to the crematorium furnaces
21on the ground floor. We are told by the Defendants that
22this elevator was never anything more sophisticated than
23something like a builder's hoist. The real elevator was
24never delivered. It had no door, no cage, no walls - it
25was just a platform jolting up and down that elevator
26shaft. We do know that as finally installed it had a
1specified load bearing capacity of 1,500 kilograms.
2Professor van Pelt suggested that the hoist could,
3therefore, have hauled 25 cadavers at a time. In
4practice, as there was just a flat platform with no walls
5or door, jolting up and down that narrow concrete elevator
6shaft, I submit that it would have been impossible to
7stack on to one small platform 25 naked cadavers in the
8conditions of filth and slime, the horror, that had been
9described by the eyewitnesses.
10 It does not bear thinking about, I agree, and
11that is why I am not going to dwell on it. We cannot
12produce hard figures for this part of the exercise, but
13one thing is plain: that one elevator in crematorium II
14was the inescapable bottleneck, and it makes plain that,
15whatever was happening downstairs in the mortuary,
16Leichenkeller No. 1, it was not on the huge scale, on the
17huge scale that history now suggests.
18 In response to your Lordship's helpful
19questioning, Professor van Pelt stated that the wartime
20documents to interpreted if they were to be relied on for
21this proof. These interpretations are quite tenuous. He
22produced to us a document referring to the special secrecy
23to be attached to the crematorium drawings. I am sure
24your Lordship remembers that document. It was at first
25blush quite an interesting document. He suggested that
26this was because of the mass gassings being carried on in
1the buildings, in the crematorium. It stressed that this
2was because -- the document stressed that this was because
3of the wehrwirtschaftlich importance [the importance to
4the military economy] of the work being conducted in that
5building or those buildings. But van Pelt confirmed under
6my cross-examination that the homicidal Final Solution,
7the genocide, was never regarded as being
8wehrwirtschaftlich important, important to the economy.
9I submitted that the reference was clearly to keeping
10secret the ugly business of the looting by the SS of the
11gold and valuables from the corpses being processed by the
12building, a system which was undoubtedly of economic
13importance to the SS.
14 Similarly, the architectural drawings seemed to
15provide the required "proof" only when one was compared
16with another. That was one of the other problems. As
17Professor van Pelt said: "... we can look now at two or
18three drawings together and ... We start to observe some
19very weird things and some modifications made between one
20drawing and the other drawing..." Those were his words, to
21which my comment is, is that the best level of proof that
22is available now, even after 55 years?
23 During his slide-show, Professor van Pelt told
24us that one cardinal piece of evidence in this drawings
25was the relocation of an internal double-door which sealed
26off Leichenkeller No. 1 from the interior of the building,
1from the inside of the Leichenkeller doorframe to the
2outside. The door was moved in the drawings from the
3inside of the wall to the outside. I pointed out that in
4the new layout, the doors were shown as being actually
5rebated into the doorframe and I suggested to the witness
6that this was indicative of a gas-tight door being fitted
7as in any standard air raid shelter design. Air raid
8shelter doors are routinely fitted outside the shelter, to
9open outwards, so as to withstand blast. Neufert, which
10is the wartime architects' handbook, bears this out.
11 The witness seems not to have considered this
12possibility. As Mr Rampton again mentioned, the doors
13allegedly found around the Birkenhau and Auschwitz sites
14subsequently are fitted with peep holes. But I say that
15that is the standard air raid shelter design complete with
16the obligatory peep hole that is fitted to air raid
17shelter doors. The amendment of the drawings to provide
18for an external door, leading from the far end of the
19subterrranean morgue to the open air, Leichenkeller No. 1,
20was also consonant with its dual use as an air raid
21shelter, and I put this to the witness on Day 11, as was
22the relocation of the main entrance staircase from the
23back of the building to the street-side. Among the
24architectural drawings provided to us from the Auschwitz
25archives is one entitled "Modification of the old
26Crematorium", namely crematorium No. 1 in Auschwitz,
1subtitled: "Air Raid Bunker for SS Station HQ with an
2Operating Theatre". So such modifications of the morgues
3to provide air raid shelter capacity were clearly nothing
4extraordinary. Mr Rampton made a lot of the order for the
5doors with peep holes both during the hearings and this
6morning, but peep holes were standard fittings, not only
7on the gas-tight air raid shelter doors, but also on the
8delousing facilities. Jean-Claude Pressac prints
9photographs of two such doors on the "Canada" delousing
10chamber at Birkenhau.
11 Looking specifically at the possible use of
12crematorium No. II and the underground basement area as
13being adapted for future air raid shelter use:
14Crematorium No. II, like its mirror image Crematorium
15No. III on the other side of the road, was originally
16designed as a state-of-the-art crematorium, possibly not
17just for the camp but for the whole catchment area of
18Auschwitz which had for centuries been an area of
19pestilence and plague. No expense was spared in its
20design. This was German tax-payer money and they did not
21care. The best equipment and architects were used on what
22was clearly a permanent facility. Building the morgue,
23the mortuary, underground, instead of above ground,
24increased construction costs by several times, but
25provided for keeping the morgue cool during the baking hot
26Central European summers. Had the building been designed
1from the start as a human slaughterhouse, it would
2certainly not have been designed on several levels with
3resultant handling problems. Slaughterhouses are normally
4built on one level.
5 We saw in Professor van Pelt's slide-show the
6pouring of the concrete roof, the roof slab, of the
7subterranean Leichenkeller No. II; the roof was
8undoubtedly much the same as Leichenkeller No. 1 with a
9six inch reinforced steel mesh. This undoubtedly made the
10new building one of the most robust on the site:
11certainly more robust and fireproof in an air raid than
12the flimsy wooden horse-barracks in which the prisoners
13and slave labour were housed.
14 We were told by Mr Rampton this morning this
15seemed improbable to establish an air raid shelter
16facility for the SS who were 1.5 miles away. Well, the
17early warning posts were in Holland, and they were
18probably 1,500 miles away. So they would provide more
19than adequate time for the SS to gallop that 1.5 miles to
20this building with the concrete roof.
21 The captured Bauleitung records of Auschwitz
22housed in Moscow confirm that from mid 1942 onwards they
23began to consider the construction at the camp of
24shelters, splinter trenches, and other ARP, Air Raid
25Precaution, measures. To be fair to the witness, when
26these Moscow catalogue entries were put to Professor van
1Pelt he seemed unfamiliar with them. After the air raids,
2our British air raids, on Cologne, Rostock and Lubeck -
3that was in March/April 1942 - the German High Command
4recognized the likelihood that air raids would spread
5across Poland and Central Europe, and they ordered the
6construction of extended ARP facilities throughout the
7occupied Eastern territories insofar as they can within
8bomber range. Existing basements, this document said,
9were to be converted into shelters, and anti-gas equipment
10provided, and personnel trained in anti-gas warfare, as
11gas attack was widely expected. I have given your
12Lordship the reference. I put the document to Professor
13Longerich and on Day 10 I said to him: "[...] the Defence
14rely on a number of photographs of doors found scattered
15around the compound of Auschwitz and Birkenhau, and we
16will show that these are standard German air raid shelter
17doors complete with peep holes". And, my Lord, I
18have provided photographs of such air raid shelter doors
19in various bundles.
20 These precautions were not in vain. In May
211943, there was an air raid on the nearby Auschwitz Buna
22plant. This is reflected in the Auschwitz documents. At
23least one of the American aerial photographs that I
24produced to the Court, the black and white photographs,
25the big ones, and to the witness, Professor van Pelt,
26shows a stick of heavy bombs just released by the plane
1that took the photograph descending over the camp. By the
2end of the war, there was also an anti-aircraft unit
3assigned to defending the region, as shown by the
4reference in Judge Staglich's membership of the Flak unit
5that manned it.
6 Your Lordship will also remember that during his
7slide-show, van Pelt showed the court a series of most
8interesting computer-generated "walk-through"
9reconstructions of the interiors of Crematorium IV and V.
10Your Lordship had actually memorized the dimensions of the
11shutter, the wooden shutter, of 30 centimetres by 40
12centimetres. There were also said to be steps leading up
13to the openings. The wartime civil defence journal
14Luftschutz shows precisely this arrangement of gas type
15shutters and steps as a standard air raid shelter feature
16designed for the event of gas warfare.
17 I put this fact to the witness van Pelt: "Would
18you agree that those shutters that have been found in the
19Auschwitz camp are, in fact, standard German air-raid
20shutters supplied by manufacturers to a standard design?"
21 The eyewitnesses stated that thousands of
22victims were gassed in these rooms, however, and their
23bodies burned in large pits to the building's rear. But
24the contemporary air photographs taken by the Americans
25show no such pits, nor are they evident today. Confronted
26with what your Lordship has yourself referred to as the
1lack of documentary evidence for the gassings, Professor
2van Pelt could only offer the suggestion that the use of
3gas chambers at Auschwitz and Birkenhau was a "moral
4certainty". Three times in his report, three times in his
5report, he fell back upon that semi-religious phrase. The
6available proofs certainly do not support the belief that
7gassings there occurred on a mass scale.
8 If I can just fill in what I have not said
9there? Of course, I do accept that there were gassings on
10a small scale at Auschwitz in the buildings identified as
11bunkers I and II which were houses which have since been
13 I will not dwell long on the uniformly poor
14evidentiary basis on the other extermination camps, known
15to the Court as the Operation Reinhard camps - Belzec,
16Sobibor and Treblinka. Here we do not have even the
17"moral certainty" which comforted Professor van Pelt.
18I can only challenge here the scale and the systematic
19nature of the alleged gassing of more than one million
20people in these centres. The Defendants' own witness,
21Professor Browning, admits that the documentation for
22these camps is "scant", that is his word, and I place
23great weight on that admission. Here, the expert cannot
24find even one contemporaneous document. He relies upon
25the eyewitnesses - men of the ilk of Kurt Gerstein, Jan
26Karski, Adolf Eichmann and Rudolf Hoss. The fictional
1elements in their statements - your Lordship will remember
2the "130 foot high mountain of clothes" which Professor
3Browning in his first draft skipped over, the
4"electrocution chambers" and the "steam chambers", the
5deliberately inflated death rolls which would otherwise
6shriek their warnings to critical researchers - are either
7ignored or suppressed in order to maintain appearances.
8 My Lord, there is an impressive (and we are both
9agreed on this, all parties) level of documentation which
10demonstrates that the liquidation by shooting of hundreds
11of thousands of Jews, probably over a million, by the
12Einsatzgruppen, but there is nothing of equivalent value
13for the Operation Reinhard camps. One word, Why?
14justifies the revisionist's scepticism.
15 The Walter Fohl letter produces a similar
16response from the experts. Found in his Berlin Document
17Centre personnel file, this man, who is in charge of a
18resettlement office at Krakow, is seen writing on June
1921st 1942 to his SS comrades as follows:
20 "Every day, trains are arriving with over 1,000
21Jews each from throughout Europe", in Krakow, passing
22through. "We provide first aid here, give them more or
23less provisional accommodation, and usually deport them
24further towards the White Sea or to the White Ruthenian
25marshlands, where they all - if they survive (and the Jews
26from Kurfurstendamm or Vienna or Pressburg certainly
1won't) - will be gathered by the end of the war, but not
2without first having built a few roads. (But we're not
3supposed to talk about it)." An extraordinary document.
4 The expert witnesses, unable otherwise to
5explain this document, dismissed it as obvious
6"camouflage" talk. But why should Fohl use camouflage
7when writing to his SS comrades? As I pointed out to
8Dr Longerich, Reinhard Heydrich himself had spoken of the
9White Sea option a few days later, on February 4th 1942 in
11 It was noticeable elsewhere that none of the
12experts was willing to give documents their natural
13meanings when they did not accord with their views. It is
14a clear case of manipulation, in my view. The Ahnert
15document, recording a meeting at the RSHA in Berlin, under
16Eichmann, on August 28th, 1942, was another example.
17There was talk of the need for the deportees, August 1942,
18to be provided with blankets, shoes, eating utensils
19before dispatch to Auschwitz. Eichmann requested the
20purchases of barracks for a Jewish deportee camp to be
21erected in Russia, with three to five such barracks being
22loaded aboard every transport train. In each case,
23because the document did not accord with their
24"exterminationist" views, the expert had failed to pursue
25it. Dr Longerich, who included it as an appendix in one
26of his books, had forgotten it even existed when
1I cross-examined him about it.
2 Coming now towards the end of my submission, my
3Lord, the allegations of racism and anti-Semitism. I have
4to address the allegations of racism, although I have the
5feeling that your Lordship is not over-impressed by them.
6 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Do not get feelings one way or the other
7about any part of the case, Mr Irving. It is a trap.
8 MR IRVING: It was a good try.
9 MR JUSTICE GRAY: On the other hand, it is a matter for you
10because I am letting you say pretty much what you want to
11say, I know because I have them now provided very
12conveniently, exactly what it is that is relied on by way
13of anti-Semitic statements, racist statements and so on.
14 MR IRVING: I shall definitely make some response therefore.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. I mean you can deal with them
16generally, if you like, rather than going through them, as
17it were, one by way. I appreciate you do not go through
19 MR IRVING: I have not gone through them one by one, my Lord.
20In fact I have not even read them.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I offer you the opportunity of making general
22answers to those submissions rather than by reading it all
23out. It is entirely up to you.
24 MR IRVING: I do not read them all out, but I shall certainly
25deal with my arguments. The Defendants have resorted to
26the allegations that I am anti-Semitic and racist. It may
1be that they are going to pay dearly for those remarks.
2Mr Rampton's highly paid experts have found one 1963 entry
3in my diary, four lines written 37 years ago, about a
4visit to my lawyer Mr Michael Rubenstein to discuss a
5satirical magazine article which I had written, after
6which visit I commented: "Thick skinned these Jews are".
7This is all that they could find from the millions of
8words in my diaries available to them by way of
9anti-Semitism. Twenty million words of diaries and they
10found "Thick skinned these Jews are". When I remarked on
11March 2nd in court, my Lord, upon the obvious paradox that
12an alleged anti-Semite would have retained Michael
13Rubenstein as his solicitor and respected advisor for 20
14years, Mr Rampton's comment, which your Lordship may well
15remember, was: "Many of my best friends are Jews too,
16Mr Irving". This stock line does not disguise the paucity
17of his evidence against me.
18 In further support of this contention they have
19taken isolated remarks made in lectures and speeches for
20which they have transcribed around half a million words.
21My Lord, I trust that your Lordship will in each case
22consider the context in which the remarks are made.
23 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Of course.
24 MR IRVING: And also the broader surrounding countryside, if
25I may put it like that. What I would ask your Lordship to
26do is to take the ugliest example, whichever your Lordship
1deems that to be, reach up for the full transcript of
2whatever that speech was, and ask yourself why I have put
3that remark in and see what else is in that speech. Then
4I submit that the alleged anti-Semitic remark fails into
5insignificance, if it is even taken to be anti-Semitic at
7 For 30 years, as I set out earlier in this room
8this afternoon, I have found myself subjected to vicious
9attack by bodies, acting, as they freely admit, as Jews.
10For 30 years I endeavoured to turn the other cheek and did
11nothing about it. I hope I succeeded. Mr Rampton drew
12attention to the fun I poked at Simon Wiesenthal. I made
13a joke in a public meeting about his, an explicit joke
14I made about his other than good looks, if I can put it
15like that. Mr Rampton called that remark "anti-Semitic".
16It was not. It was a joke about the man's looks, of the
17same genre that Mr Rampton made when he enquired
18rhetorically of Professor Funke whether a certain
19outer-fringe Swedish revisionist seen in one video shown
20to the court with long blonde hair was a man or woman. It
21is exactly the same kind of throw-away remark.
22 In view of the manner in which the two Simon
23Wiesenthal centres have been abusing my name in their fund
24rasing leaflets, and endeavouring to destroy my own
25livelihood, the court might think that my fun-making,
26while tasteless, remark was not undeserved, possibly it
1was even rather reserved. It was not anti-Semitic.
2Mr Wiesenthal is no more immune from criticism either as a
3person or as a public figure than I am.
4 Searching hopefully for evidence of
5"anti-Semitism" in me, the investigation by he Board of
6Deputies in 1992 came up empty handed in their secret
7report which they planted on Canadian government files.
8They confirmed that I had dealings with my Jews in my
9professional life, and they added that I "used this as an
10excuse" to say that I am not an anti-Semite. These people
11are hard to please. "He is far too clever an opponent"
12the Board wrote in this secret report, "to openly admit to
13being an anti-Semite". "We endorse all condemnation of
14anti-Semitism", they quote me as writing in my newsletter
15back in 1982. All of these things, including the actual
161992 secret intelligence report filed by he Board of
17Deputies, were disclosed to these Defendants in my
18discovery. The Defendants quoted a passage from a speech
19delivered, they said, in May 1992. In fact, as my diary
20confirms, it was delivered in May 1993. So it may be that
21the year was not accidental, because by that time my
22family and I had been subjected to a catalogue of insults
23by the leaders of these various bodies. If a writer's
24books are banned and burnt, his bookshops are smashed, his
25hands are manacled, his person insulted, his printers are
26burnt down, his access to the world's archives is denied,
1his family's livelihood is destroyed, his phone lines are
2jammed with obscene and threatening phone calls, death
3threats, his house is beset by violent, angry mobs, the
4walls and posts around his address are plastered with
5stickers inciting the public to violence against him, and
6a wreath is sent to him with a foul and taunting message
7on the death of his oldest daughter, then it ill-behoves
8people to offer cheap criticism if the writer finally
9commits the occasional indiscretion and lapse in referring
10to the people who are doing it to him.
11 I singled out in this -- well, I am not going to
12comment at length on these evil allegations and slurs.
13They lend fire and fury to the original libel complained
14of, that is my view. I submit that the word "racism" in
15the ears of the man in the Clapham Omnibus is about
16Stephen Lawrence and cone heads in the Ku Klux Klan. It
17conjures up images of murder and thuggery and violence and
18foul-mouthed graffiti. In deliberating on the conduct of
19the case and on the appropriate scale of damages, your
20Lordship will no doubt bear them in mind, these
21allegations made against me.
22 I voluntarily provided all my entire private
23diaries to the Defendants in this action. They asked to
24see a few pages and I said "take the lot". Fifty-nine
25volumes of private diaries, 20 million words on paper and
26on disk. Mr Rampton produced from them one nineteen-word
1ditty attached to another quite harmless one about the
2"messica dressica" of my daughter Jessica. To find in
3all those diaries and telephone conversations written
4since 1959 just one nineteen-word ditty that you could
5trot out for the media, does not suggest that I am as
6obsessed with race and racism as learned counsel and, for
7that matter, the newspapers that report this case too.
8 I repeat, this multi-million dollar Defence team
9has found one nineteen-word nonsense poem, recorded in my
10diary with other Lear- or Belloc-type rhythmic verses as
11having been recited to my own nine-month old infant who
12has, I am glad to say, grown into a delightful girl of six
13now, bearing none of the traces of the poison that
14Mr Rampton recklessly suggested that I had fed to her.
15Fortunately, I did not sing to her "Three Blind Mice".
16 Similarly, from my hundreds of lectures and
17talks these very proper spaniels have sniffed out a few
18lines of music-hall whit of the type that a Dave Allen
19might indulge in, with Mr Trevor McDonald as one of the
20butts. That in Mr Rampton's words is racism. One wonders
21which well-shielded part of the modern world is inhabited
22by learned counsel. Can anyone go and live there?
23 The references that I have made to what is now
24formally called the Instrumentalization of the Holocaust,
25have also been adduced as evidence of anti-Semitism. Are
26non-Jews disbarred from making a criticism that is made
1increasing vocally now by others like Professor Peter
2Novak or by Leon Weiseltier, the literary editor of the
3New Republic who wrote on May 3rd 1993: "It is a sad
4fact, said the principal philanthropist of the grotesque
5Simon Wiesenthal Centre of Los Angeles, that Israel and
6Jewish education and all the other familiar buzz words no
7longer seem to rally Jews behind the community, the
8Holocaust though works every time."
9 I turn to page 89, my Lord, the third
10paragraph. In general, I would invite your Lordship to
11pick out one such utterance as a sample, to reach then for
12the transcript of the entire speech, to take note of the
13rest of its content, its clear reference to the very real
14sufferings of the Jews, the liquidations, the Bruns report
15and the rest, and then ask: Was the remark true? Was it
16explicable? Was it rhetorically justified as part of the
17skilled lecturer's armoury?
18 Your Lordship has been told of my remarks that
19more women died on Kennedy's back seat than in the gas
20chamber at Auschwitz, the one shown to the tourists. It
21is a tasteless but quite literally true. It is, as I have
22shown in this court, even true if the main gas chamber at
23Birkenau is brought into the equation, crematorium (ii),
24the factory of death, because the eyewitnesses lied about
25that one too. The Poles have admitted that the Auschwitz
26building and its chimney are a post-1948 fake. My
1colourful language, my tasteless language, was a
2rhetorical way of bringing that extraordinary revelation
3home to audiences.
4 The audiences, I am told, are extreme audiences,
5of extreme people, although the photographs suggest rather
6differently. They appear rather boring middle-age kind of
8 My files confirm that I occasionally addressed
9audiences of the Association for Free Journalism in
10Germany, the National Democratic Party in Germany and the
11German Peoples Union. My Lord, those four documents which
12I have disclosed to the Defendants, they are English
13translations of the policy leaflets, the manifestos of
14these bodies, and in my submission they do not show them
15to be extreme in any way. These were, furthermore, bodies
16that were accepted at that time under Germany's very
17strict laws as being legal and constitutional. But the
18court is more concerned, I believe, with have individual
19personages than with bodies, than with the actual
20organizations. I have not the slightest doubt that this
21court will find that I had no meaningful contact with the
22ugly rag-bag neo-Nazi extremists mentioned by Professor
23Funke, people with whom, to make the point quite clearly,
24the Defendants, their experts and their legal team seem
25more familiar than I. Most of the names were completely
26unknown to me and the Defence have sought, in vein, for
1them in my diaries and papers, to which I emphasise yet
2again I gave them complete and unlimited privileged
3access. This has not stopped them from bringing these
4names forward and mentioning these alleged links in the
5open court in an attempt to smear me still further with an
6eye particularly on the German media. I urge that this,
7their conduct of the case, be held against them.
8 Characteristically of the weakness of their
9case, Professor Funke listed one entry in a diary where
10I noted "road journey with a Thomas" whose second name
11I never learned; Funke entered the name "Dienel?" So for
12as I know, I have never met a Dienel, but it illustrates
13the kind of evidence that the Defence were hoping to rely
15 As for Michael Kuhnen, the documentary evidence
16before both Professor Funke when he wrote his report and
17before this court, is that I explicitly said I would not
18attend any function at which he was even present. I never
19did and I never met him.
20 By way of evidence the court has been shown a
21number of videos. Shorn of their commercial packaging,
22they do not amount to very much, in my submission. In
23view of the weight attached to it by learned counsel and
24by his witness Professor Funke, my Lord, I have
25re-examined the raw video of Halle function of November
269th 1991 at which I briefly spoke, and I have timed and
1listed the scenes that it shows. My Lord, you will see in
2the footnote on that page that I have given the
3appropriate breakdown referring to the time on the video.
4 Your Lordship may wish at sometime to have the
5video back to check that these times are correct, or the
6Defendants' solicitors may wish to submit any corrections
7they feel are needed.
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: No. I will assume your time is correct
9unless I am told otherwise.
10 MR IRVING: Yes, unless otherwise informed. The raw details
11are, when the when camera's meter shows 170021 I am first
12seen arriving at an unnamed hotel restaurant in Halle,
13accompanied by Mrs Worch and by David Leigh of he Sunday
14Observer. At 17:14:40 I am again glimpsed, 14 minutes
15later, still at the hotel speaking to a reporter. The
16cameraman and David Leigh then go off to film the rival
17processions during which I am at no time seen on film. In
18fact I remained lunching at the hotel. At 18:11:00 a
19truck is seen being rigged as an open-air platform, and at
2018:14:26 I am seen with two reporters watching from the
21edge of the square. In my submission, my Lord, I do not
22have a particularly happy look on my face at all at what
23I am seeing.
24 At 18:16 I walk over to the platform, hands in
25pockets and mount it. The man whom Professor Funke tells
26us is Dienel, and I have no way of checking it one way or
1the other, is seen to get off to the left and there is no
2contact whatever between him and me. Mr Worch briefly
3introduces me to the audience. I begin speaking at
418:16:39 and the filmed portion of my speech ends less
5than three and a half minutes later.
6 When the off-screen chanting of slogans begins
7at 18:18:59 I am clearly seen to interrupt my speech,
8shake my head at them and gesticulate with my left hand to
9them to stop, and I am clearly heard to say, "You must
10not", because they are shouting the "Siegheil" slogans,
11Mein Fuhrer, and things like, "you must not always be
12thinking of the past". I am heard clearly to say: "You
13must always be thinking of the past. You must not keep
14coming out with the slogans of the past. We are thinking
15of the future [voice emphasised] of Germany. We are
16thinking of the future of the German people. As an
17Englishman I have to say ...", and so on. So I am quite
18clearly expressing extreme anger at these people who have
19come along with their Nazi slogans.
20 Six seconds after ending my brief speech I am
21seen to leave the platform without further contact with
22anybody. My diary notes that I at once left by car and
23drove back to the Rhur in Western Germany.
24 Heavily edited, for example to remove my rebuke
25to these slogan-shouting people, whom I took and take to
26have been agents provocateurs, this sequence was shown on
1November 28th and 29th to British TV audiences in a "This
2Week" programme entitled "Hitler's Children, the New
3Nazis", directed by the German Michael Schmidt, Professor
4Funke's star witness, and with none other than Gerald
5Gable of Searchlight listed as the consultant, and in
6Despatches on the other channel. This indicates whose
7hands were behind the editing. Again, heavily edited the
8film has been shown around the world against me. This was
9the thrice edited film to which I drew your Lordship's
10attention in suggesting there was evidence of dubious
12 May I again remind your Lordship of my basic
13principle on lecturing. Unlike the Defendants who have
14proudly stated that they refuse to debate with opponents,
15I have expressed a readiness to attend, to address all and
16any who are willing to listen. Your Lordship will
17remember my letter of June 24th 1988 to my editor William
18Morrow, Connie Roosevelt, to whom I wrote:
19 "I have been invited to speak as a guest
20speaker at a right-wing function in Los Angeles next
21February. They have offered a substantial fee and all my
22expenses, and until now I have adopted a policy of never
23refusing an invitation if the speakers meet my terms,
24namely a free speech and a fat fee. On this occasion
25I intend to give the audience a piece of mind about some
26of their lunatic views."
1 I may secondly point out that were it not for
2the clandestine activities of the violent and extremist
3bodies dedicated to destroy my right to free speech and
4the rights of all audiences in the United States and
5elsewhere, at Berkley, at Dublin, Pretoria or wherever, to
6hear my opponents and equally dedicated to intimidating my
7publishers and smashing bookstall windows, where it not
8for their hate campaign I would have been able to continue
9in the normal manner with my exemplary professional
10career. It rings hollow that the same shabby bodies who
11have generated the hatred against me now point their
12crooked finger at my and abuse me using the very
13considerable privileges afforded to them by this court, to
14continuing to make my voice heard whenever I can. When
15I use words to describe them in detail, which they well
16deserve, they ring their hands lament about extremism.
17 I have pointed out that so far as Germany is
18concerned, none of the German bodies who invited me to
19speak was illegal or banned. In fact when first invited
20to address the German Peoples Union I wrote to and
21telephoned the Germany Embassy, as the documents in my
22discovery show, and asked them specifically whether this
23was a legal and constitutional body. The Embassy
24confirmed in writing on July 25th 1984 that was. The
25extremism was in the eye of beholder. The further to the
26left the beholder squinted from, the more distant these
1bodies may have seem from him.
2 We have heard a lot from Professor Funke, the
3sociologist of the Free University in Berlin. My Lord,
4I am now going to pass over the next two pages and
5continue from the bottom of page 94. As for his
6allegation, the allegation by Professor Funke, here in
7court, my Lord, I also ask you to disregard those two
9 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I think I know why, and I think that is
10very right and proper.
11 MR IRVING: As for his allegation here in court that I should
12have known that various allegations were going to be
13banned in years ahead, it is difficult for an Englishmen
14coming from a country with deeper democratic traditions
15than Professor Funke's, to implant himself into the brain
16or mindset of the authoritarian German mould where book
17burning is now once again de rigueur, where a German
18academic like Funke does not bat an eyelid upon hearing
19that a teacher is still serving a seven-year jail sentence
20imposed for chairing a lecture at which I spoke, where two
21District Court judges who acquitted that teacher were
22reprimanded and finally retired in disgrace by order of
23the Minister of Justice, and where governments recently
24have begun routinely banning fringe opposition parties and
25circumscribing even their legal activities.
26 My general response to this attempt at "guilt by
1association" which we have seen a lot over the last few
2weeks, is to compare it with the worst accesses of the
3inquisitions conducted by Senator Joseph McCarthy. In
4Britain the courts have always viewed it as repugnant;
5most recently I believe Morland J in another court in the
6same building. Hollywood's finest scriptwriters, many of
7them Jewish, had their careers vernichtet, to use that
8word again, by the reckless allegation that they had
9associated with known communists. Now come these
10Defendants levelling the mirror image of these same
11charges at me. McCarthyism was rightly exposed for what
12it was in more recent years and more enlightened years,
13and these Defendants for their own purposes are seeking to
14turn the clock back.
15 As far as the United States are concerned, apart
16from the Institute of Historical Review, which I shall
17deal with separately, the one organization identified by
18learned counsel for the Defence, as I understand it, is
19the National Alliance. First let me point out that, no
20doubt with good reason, the Defendants have decided not to
21call their expert on political extremism in the United
22States, Professor Levin, and they have withdrawn his
23expert report. I think "junked" was the word. Mr Rampton
24used the word "junked" or "dumped" I believe. Had they
25not I would have "debunked" it I think. We have,
26therefore, no general expert evidence as to the nature of
1he National Alliance, and I think I ought to emphasise
2that matter. The court is probably as much in the dark
3about this group as anybody else.
4 The Defence invites the court to study the
5leaflets put about by that body at one meeting, but could
6offer to the court not the slightest evidence that I was
7aware of such leaflets or, for that matter, if they are
8once again falling back on negligence, that I ought to
9have been aware of them.
10 If, as I submit, the meetings were organized by
11individual friends of mine acting outside whatever their
12capacity, if any, within the National Alliance may have
13been, there is no reason why I should have read such
14leaflets if they were indeed on offer.
15 As for the IHR, the Institute of Historical
16Review, I have little to add to what I have stated in my
17various written replies and on the witness stand. It is
18clearly unsatisfactory, though not surprising, that
19establishment scholars feel the need to dismiss any rival
20body of scholars or historians as extremists, merely on
21the basis that these others propagate a different version
22of history from their own consensus versions.
23 The officials of the IHR nearly all hold
24academic qualifications. True they are not trained
25historians, but then neither are some of the most famous
26names of historians in both ancient and contemporary
1times. It is clear from correspondence before the court
2that I recognize he short-comings in the old IHR, and
3I was keen to introduce them to new speakers, including
4mainline scholars, historians like John Toland who did in
5fact speak there, Professor Ernst Nolte and Michael
6Beschloss. I am not and never have been an official of
7the IHR. At most, one of many friendly advisers. As for
8speaking engagements, my association with the IHR has been
9the same as my association with (I use the word
10"association" again), for example, Cambridge University
11Fabian Society because I spoke there too, or the Trinity
12College Dublin Lit. &Debc., or any other body of
13enlightened people keen to hear alternative views.
14 Professor Evans in his odious attempts to smear
15and defile my name which I hope will long haunt him in the
16common rooms at Cambridge, called me a frequent speaker at
17the IHR, and may I say "so what?" None of my lectures had
18a Holocaust denial or anti-Semitic or extremist theme.
19I spoke on Churchill, on Pearl Harbour, on Rommel, on the
20Goebbels' Diaries, on my Eichmann papers find, and on
21general problems of writing history. The court has
22learned that I have in fact addressed functions of the IHR
23only five times in seventeen years, one lecture each
24time. No amount of squirming by this expert witness could
25increase that figure. It is true that I socialized before
26or after the event with the IHR officials and their
1wives. So what? It is true that I use their warehousing
2facilities. So what? It is true that the IHR, along with
3thousands of other retail outlets sell my books. So what?
4It is true that I introduced them to subjects which some
5members of their audience found deeply uncomfortable, for
6example, the confessions of Adolf Eichmann, the harrowing
7Bruns report and the Kristallnacht. I would willingly
8read out the relevant extracts of my lectures to the IHR,
9but my Lord, through the courtesy and industry of the
10Defendants' solicitors, which I have already had cause to
11praise, your Lordship is already funded with extensive
12transcripts of precisely those talks, and I would ask that
13your Lordship read them or look at them with this
14paragraph in mind.
15 I am accused of telling audiences what they want
16to hear, and that may be partially true, but, by Jove,
17having done so, then I used the goodwill generated like
18that to tell them a lot of things they very much did not
19want to hear. The Defendants would willingly overlook
20that aspect of my association with the IHR, and I trust
21that the court will not.
22 As for the National Alliance, an organization of
23which the Defence makes much, once again, as an
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You have dealt with that already.
26 MR IRVING: We have had it, but I am back again, my Lord. It
1must have been quite late at night when I wrote this
2part. As an Englishman I am completely unfamiliar with he
3nature the National Alliance, its logo and its name. It
4may be that the name means more to the Defendants and to
5those who are financing the efforts than it means to me.
6It certainly meant nothing to the English members of the
7gallery on the day that it was mentioned here.
8 I have no meaningful contacts with the
9organization as such. One or at most two of its
10individuals members who were already on my mailing list
11volunteered, like scores of other Americans, to organize
12lectures for me. One was Erich Gliebe who has always
13organized my lectures Cleveland in Ohio. On the evidence
14of his notepaper from the year 1990 (that is ten years ago
15now) he is also a National Alliance member. I ask the
16court to accept that when asked about it ten years later
17I had long forgotten receiving that one letter from him
18with its heading and its logo. Before each lecture date
19I mailed an invitation letter to my entire mailing list of
20friends in each State. The audience was, therefore,
21largely my own people, if I can put it like that. That is
22why Mr Breeding rather superfluously welcomes the
23strangers in his opening remarks on the Florida video tape
24as seen. Had he told me he would also claim to do so on
25behalf of his organization, I would have told him not to.
26It was my function and the audience were my guests and not
2 The photographs taken at this meeting shows, as
3the Defendants' own agents have warranted, no formal
4National Alliance presence, flags, arm bands or whatever.
5The witness statement of Rebecca Gutmann has confirmed
7 Learned counsel for the Defendants has drawn
8attention to one 18-inch wide pennant, that is my
9estimate, displayed at the function on a side wall with
10what they state is the National Alliance logo on it
11visible on the video film. Its logo appears to be based
12on the CND design. I did not notice it at the time nor
13would I have had the faintest idea what it was if I did.
14Evidently Mr Gliebe told me that his pals at the National
15Alliance had had a hand in organizing my successful
16Cleveland function, and that is why I noted in my diary
17with a hint of surprise that it turns out that the
18National Alliance had organized the other meeting too.
19 The court may agree that this phrase alone is
20evidence that their involvement was (A) not manifest, and
21(B) not known to me before. Given that the audience was
22largely my own making, it does not seem worthy of much
23note. I submit that this kind of defence evidence really
24does not meet the enhanced standard of proof required by
25law on defamation for justification of the more serious
1 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not think you need bother with the next
3 MR IRVING: In general, it is also to be stated that at
4material times, namely when associated with those
5individuals, they were not extremists -- I take it that
6your Lordship accepts what I said in that paragraph?
7 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not think, frankly, that the evidence of
8your contacts with the BNP amounts to anything.
9 MR IRVING: Thank you very much. In general, it is also to be
10stated that at material times, namely when I was
11associated with those individuals, they were not
12extremists; nor has it been shown to the court that at
13that time they were. Thus at the time I first met this
14young man Ewald Althans in Germany late in October 1989,
15he seemed full of promise and eager to learn. I later
16learned that he had been to Israel for six months on a
17German Government voluntary scheme for young Germans who
18wished to atone. Over the two or three years that our
19orbits occasionally intercepted I could see that he was
20growing more extreme and provocative in his actions. He
21also became undependable and wayward in a number of
22non-political ways that I mentioned in court.
23 According to Der Spiegel at his 1995 trial in
24Berlin, Althans had acted for the Bavarian security
25authorities as a top agent until 1994 when they ended the
26liaison. The German security authorities had, as
1Professor Funke agreed, a record of hiring agents
3 I now come to Ernst Zundel, the next paragraph.
4Ernst Zundel is a German born Canadian for whose own
5particular views I hold no brief. I later learned that he
6had apparently written some provocatively-themed books
7with tongue-in-cheek titles on flying saucers in
8Antarctica, and on the "Adolf Hitler that I knew and
9loved", which is said to be worst than outre; wild horses
10would not make me read such books myself. I had met him
11in 1986 and found that as a personality he was not as dark
12as had been painted in the media. I was asked to give
13expert evidence at his trial in Toronto in 1988 relating
14to the Third Reich and Hitler's own involvement in the
15Holocaust. I did so to the best of my professional
16abilities, and I was told that I had earned the
17commendation of the court in doing so.
18 It is plain to me from what I know that
19Mr Zundel has been subjected to 20-year onslaught by the
20Canadian organizations dedicated to combatting what they
21regard as Holocaust denial because of his dissident views,
22which are certainly more extreme than mine. My own
23relationship with Mr Zundel has been proper throughout,
24and the court has not been given any evidence to the
25contrary. At times it has even been strained because of
26the misfortune inflicted on me in retribution for having
1spoken at his trial.
2 My Lord, there remain one or two minor matters,
3in my view. The Defendants alleged that I wilfully
4exaggerated the Dresden death roll in my 1963 book "The
5Destruction of Dresden", and that I had no basis for my
6figures. I have satisfied this court, I believe, that at
7all times (A) I set and published the proper upper and
8lower limits for estimates that I gave, giving a wide
9range of figures which necessarily decreased overall over
10the years as our state of information improved, and that
11(B) I had an adequate basis for the various figures which
12I provided in my works at the material times. It has to
13be said that authors have little or no control over the
14content of books that are sub-licensed by their main
15publisher to other publishers. Revisions are not
16encouraged for costs reasons.
17 I have always been aware of the highly charged
18political nature of the figures quote for this event, the
19bombing of Dresden. The highest figure of 250,000, which
20I mentioned in my books only as the maximum ever alleged,
21was given, for example, by the German Chancellor
22Dr Comrade Ardenau in a West German official government
23publication which I showed the court. The lowest figures
24only became available in a book published in 1994 by
25Fredrich Reichardt. A copy of this book was provided to
26me in 1997. By that time I had already published the
1latest updated version of my book which is now called
2"Apocalypse 1945, The Destruction of Dresden", in which
3I had lowered the death roll still further on the basis of
4my on investigations and considerations. This was the
5first edition over which I, not the publisher, had total
6control, as it appeared under my own imprint.
7 In 1965, as the court is aware, I received
8written estimates of 140,000 and 180,000 dead from a
9rather anxious Soviet zone citizen, Dr Max Funfack, who
10claimed to have received them about nine days after the
11raid from the City Commandant and the Chief Civil Defence
12Officer respectively, both of them his personal friends.
13That being so, there was no reason why I should have
14revised the 135,000 estimate which I had earlier received
15from Hans Voigt, a city official charged with drawing up
16death lists when I was researching my first book in 1961.
17 In 1966 I received the police final report of
18March 1945. While still remaining sceptical about it for
19the reasons stated, for example, the officer was
20responsible for Dresden's ARP and it was too early to
21achieve any kind of overall final figure, the number of
22refugees killed was also an imponderable. I took the
23correct action, however. I sent to letter to The Times
24within a few days of finding the new documents, that is
25July 1996, within a few days of finding the new documents
26in the mail on my return from a trip to the United
1States. Not only that, but at my own expense I had the
2letter reprinted and sent to hundreds of historians and
3the like. One hopes that the expert witnesses whom we saw
4in the witness stand on behalf of the Defence would have
5had the same integrity to do the same kind of thing.
6 As for the Goebbels diaries, the Defendants, as
7I understand it, do not now seek to justify their claim
8that I broke an agreement with the Moscow archives in
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not think that is right, but do not take
11time on it because I think I know what the case is.
12 MR IRVING: They have withdrawn witness reports of the Russian
13archivists and will provide me no opportunity to
14cross-examine them. I was prepared to pursue those
15cross-examinations most vigorously. I produced a witness
16statement from Mr Peter Millar of the Sunday Times, my
17colleague in Moscow, and I made him available for
18cross-examination. He confirmed that there was no verbal
19or written agreement, as I had also stated in my various
20replies, so therefore I could not have broken it. The
21Defendants have left no satisfactory evidence before the
22court that refutes this, in my submission.
23 Mr Millar also confirmed to the court that he
24did not agree that my conduct gave rise to significant
25risk of damage to the plates. The plates had been
26withheld from historians by the Russians for 55 years or
1more. That figure of course is wrong. It is 48 years at
2that time, I am sorry. The plates have been withheld from
3historians for 48 years or more. By my actions I made
4this historically very important materials available to
5the world, and I placed copies of them in the appropriate
6German archives at my own expense.
7 My Lord, I make submission now on the Heinrich
9 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not think I would read that out if
10I were you. I think that is not the best way of dealing
12 MR IRVING: No. I will leave it as a written submission.
13 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Have you seen what -- I am sure you have seen
14it because I have a copy of a letter to you with
16 MR IRVING: I have seen it, my Lord, yes.
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY: In the light of those attachments and
18including Professor Longerich's really quite helpful
19account of his investigations, what is your submission?
20 MR IRVING: I am not challenging the authenticity of the
21document, my Lord, but I am asking that attention be paid
22to the fact that it is highly unsatisfactory that I am not
23provided in good time, in a timeous manner, with the file
24dated that I needed in order to go behind the document and
25establish whether there was anything which would undermine
26the purport that the defendants were seeking to attach to
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You mean the other documents in the same
4 MR IRVING: Like in the case of the Schlegelberger document,
5which enabled the Defendants to attack the meaning of the
6Schlegelberger document, because they had documents
7relating to it in the same file which enabled them to
8narrow it down and say this is clearly a reference to the
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Sorry, we are talking about the Muller
11document, are we not?
12 MR IRVING: We are talking about the Muller document. I am
13saying that, had I had the other documents in the same
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: What has it got to do with Mischlinge?
16 MR IRVING: I could have gone behind the Muller document, using
17the other documents in the same file.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: You mean as you did with Schlegelberger?
19 MR IRVING: As they did with Schlegelberger.
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I follow. I am not quite sure,
21Dr Longerich wrote to Dr Aaron Reich, as I understand it,
22to see what other documents there were in the file, but
23I do not know what the result was, or indeed when the
24question was asked. You do not know either?
25 MR IRVING: I asked the question and I was given a totally
26fictitious file number in the German Federal archives.
1 MR RAMPTON: Not by us.
2 MR IRVING: It was given by you because it was in the footnote
3of one of your expert reports as being the source.
4 MR JUSTICE GRAY: As I understand it, and do not let us talk
5over each other too much, my understanding is that first
6time around the wrong file number was given, but then
7later the correct file number is thought to have been
8discovered, which then prompted Dr Longerich to write to
9or to fax Dr Aaron Reich, asking if he could say what the
10other documents in this file are.
11 MR IRVING: The correct file number was then notified to me
12this last weekend, which of course gave me no time
13whatsoever to do the kind of research that I would have
14had to do.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Anyway, your position is you do not deny its
16authenticity, but you do say that the provenance is
18 MR IRVING: I do say it has been improperly produced to me in a
19manner which has made it impossible for me to attack its
20meaning, but I have attacked its meaning nevertheless in
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I know you have.
23 MR IRVING: I am not seriously worried about it because I am
24sure that your Lordship will accept what I said about the
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Do you mind if I ask Mr Rampton what the
2 MR RAMPTON: I do not see it that any criticism at all can be
4 MR JUSTICE GRAY: When was Dr Aaron Reich asked the question?
5 MR RAMPTON: Where is that, my Lord?
6 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is paragraph numbered 4 on the second
8 MR RAMPTON: I think that, unless I have completely
9misunderstood this clip of papers, I confess I have not
10paid it a terrific lot of attention recently, there is,
11I think, actually a page of the little clip showing that a
12fax was sent or received -- I can see. It has my own fax
13number right at the top of it so I think it is what
14Dr Longerich says he sent from my chambers. It looks like
1516.48 on Friday, but unfortunately I cannot read it.
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY: That was the problem I had which is why
17I asked when it had been sent. Leave aside when it was
18sent. What was the answer?
19 MR RAMPTON: I do not know when it was sent.
20 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Sorry, what was the answer from Aaron Reich?
21 MR RAMPTON: There was one in the Washington archive as well.
22The reply says, whatever its date may be -- I can see it
23is 10th March. It is from somebody called Anna Row. She
24is writing to both Aaron Reich, who I think might be in
25New York, I really do not know, and to Dr Longerich. What
26she says is: "After some searching and help from Jurgen,
1we were able to find a copy of the document in question.
2The citation in Moscow is, according to the two records"
3etc. etc., and gives the reference. "If a fax copy is
4desired we can send it along".
5 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I follow all that and, as I understand it,
6not making too much of a meal of it all, there are two
7copies of this document, one in Moscow and another in
8Germany, the German copy having been provided from
9Moscow. That may or may not be satisfactory, but what
10I was really concerned to know is what attempts, if any,
11have been made to discover what other documents were in
12the same file, because I think the request was not an
13unreasonable one, that the other documents in the file
14might cast some light on the significance of Muller.
15 MR RAMPTON: I simply do not know. If that is not addressed in
16Dr Longerich's note, I cannot give an answer about it
17because I was not a party to it.
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: That was one of the things that I think
19I suggested on day 30 or day 31, I cannot remember,
20Mr Irving should be given an answer to.
21 MR RAMPTON: Plainly, I would submit, the position must be
22this. The reason why, not including the November 1941
23document, Mr Irving tendered the other Schlegelberger
24documents is that, on one view of its dating, the other
25documents might be of some relevance. I assume -- this
26is an assumption -- that a distinguished and respectable
1historian like Dr Longerich would not produce a single
2document from a file if there were other surrounding
3documents which, to his knowledge, had a bearing on its
5 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, but he does not say so, that is the
6problem. He does not say that he has looked, or tried to
7look and failed.
8 MR RAMPTON: In any event, since Mr Irving accepts the
9authenticity of the document, the fact that there are not
10any other documents around it leads nowhere.
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY: We do not even know that, do we? We do not
12know whether there are other documents in the same file.
13 MR RAMPTON: There might be a source, I do not know. In fact,
14I think I may have been guilty of not reading the message
15carefully enough. I read paragraph 1 of Dr Longerich's
16note which was prepared yesterday: "I am familiar with
17this document. A copy is available in the archival
18collection of the Zentralstelle in Ludwigsburg. This is a
19collection of documents which was handed over by the
20Soviet authorities in 1969 to the Federal Republic". It
21begs the question, I interpose there, how on earth it is
22that Mr Irving has never seen it. It has been there since
231969. "The document is accompanied by a covering page
24with an archival reference to the file where the original
25is kept 500.1.25. This is an archival reference from the
26Soviet archive in Moscow. Fons" -- whatever that
1means -- "security police and SD, part 1 of the
2collection, file 25. I was in Moscow", says Dr Longerich
3"in 1992 for four weeks, and I looked at documents from
4this fons extensively. At the moment I cannot remember
5whether I saw the original of this document during my stay
6in Moscow, but I kept notes about this day and could
7reconstruct what I saw there. The notes are at the moment
8in Munich". That plainly does not suggest that he
9believes that there are any other relevant documents in
11 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It does not say one way or the other. He
12says he cannot remember. It probably is a point of
13absolutely no significance but, since it is something that
14Mr Irving has raised and I did indicate that I thought he
15ought to have an answer, I would still like such
16information as can be obtained from Dr Longerich to be
17communicated to him and to me.
18 MR RAMPTON: I will try again. Given that it is accepted to be
19an authentic document, and given also that it is not
20perhaps a document that lies at the heart of the case
21though it has some significance obviously, I will do
22it. That leads me to make an enquiry, if I may, of your
24 MR IRVING: Can I just finish?
25 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. You have some other points?
26 MR RAMPTON: My Lord, I am sorry, this is a connected enquiry,
1if I may. That may take time. I do not know myself at
2the moment what date judgment is likely to be because
3obviously, if your Lordship is going to consider any
4additional documents, they will need to be got sooner
5rather than later.
6 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not know either. I hope it will not be
7as long as you might fear. That does not tell you very
8much, does it. That is not intended to be delphic,
9but think in terms of a small number of weeks rather than
10a large number of months.
11 MR RAMPTON: I was not trying to put any pressure on at all.
12For the sake of this exercise, I obviously need to know.
13If it is going to be in three or four days time,
14I probably will not be able to achieve it.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think that will be unlikely. That is all I
16can do. If you can obtain it as soon as possible -- if
17you cannot, so be it. We will have to manage without.
18 MR RAMPTON: We will do what we can.
19 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, you have listed some other
21 MR IRVING: I wish to conclude on page 104, if I may.
22 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am so sorry. Hang on, why are you telling
23me about that now?
24 MR IRVING: Okay, then it is wrong that I should let your
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Is that not relevant only to costs? Tell me
1if I am wrong, but that would be the way I would see it.
2 MR IRVING: Not only the costs, my Lord, there are other
3features of part 36.
4 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Let me just read it.
5 MR IRVING: My understanding is that your Lordship was not
6informed of what was in the offer, but that offer was made
7under the new rules.
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not see the relevance of telling me that
9unless and until it comes to the question of costs.
10 MR IRVING: Yes. The question of costs is covered by the next
11paragraph, which is that I do not propose asking for my
12costs in this action.
13 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is premature to be telling me that.
14 MR IRVING: Not at all, my Lord. This is surely the place when
15I can put this into your Lordship's mind and that deals
16with it, puts it out of the way.
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is true, but I would only address that
18question once judgment had been given.
19 MR IRVING: But I do ask your Lordship to give judgment in the
20terms and premises set out in my writ and statement of
21claim, namely damages, including aggravated damages for
22libel and an injunction restraining the Defendants and
23each of them, whether by themselves or agents or otherwise
24from further publishing or causing to be published the
25said or similar words defamatory of myself as claimant.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. You gave me that little list of other
1things you were going to raise today. Standard of proof
2in graver libels, I think you know that I believe I know
3what the law is on that so you need not trouble with it,
4unless you want to. Is there anything you wanted to say
5particularly, Mr Irving? I am not stopping you, I just do
6not think it is really necessary.
7 MR IRVING: It is trite law, is it not, my Lord?
8 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is.
9 MR IRVING: We had this discussion earlier and I thought it
10important -- in fact it is obviously very impertinent of
11me to draw it your Lordship's attention.
12 MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is not at all, no. I have it in mind
13anyway. Section 5, I think we have resolved that in an
14earlier discussion today.
15 MR IRVING: We have dealt with 4 because I have now done it.
16 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. Costs we have decided it is premature.
17Now I realize time is passing but it is obviously sensible
18to conclude everything today, and I hope I can perhaps do
19it in this comprehensive way. You have seen that in the
20Defendants' detailed written submissions they recite
21various concessions -- you may not like the term but they
22call them concessions which they say you have made about
23such matters as shootings in the East, numbers killed,
24whether it was systematic, whether Hitler knew about it,
25and also in relation to deaths at the Reinhardt death
26camps. Do you accept you did make those concessions?
1 MR IRVING: The answer is I have not seen them, but I know of
2them. I have not had any time at all to read that big
4 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Then I do not think it is fair to ask you to
5give answers on the hoof. What I will ask you to do
6though is this. If you either dispute that you ever made
7the concessions that the Defendants say you made, or you
8want now to reconsider ----
9 MR IRVING: Resile.
10 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Well, I was trying not to use that word
11actually -- to reconsider, then would you write to me and
12to the Defendants, shortly setting out what you say you
13said, or what you now say?
14 MR IRVING: Yes.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Because I do not want to be under any
17 MR IRVING: Purely on the matter of concession?
18 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes.
19 MR IRVING: I will certainly do that within the next two or
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Good. Is there anything else, Mr Rampton?
22 MR RAMPTON: Yes, there is. I should like to apologise
23personally -- I dare say I am right in thinking it was
24directed at me -- for not being able in one moment to
25restrain my frustration. I apologise for that.
26 MR JUSTICE GRAY: There is no need for that.
1 MR RAMPTON: Yes. I should at my age know better. But, as
2your Lordship will remember, it is sometimes extremely
3difficult to restrain oneself when one can actually hear
4the evidence of one's own witnesses being misrepresented.
5I am not going to do a trawl through what Mr Irving has
6said. Your Lordship has the evidence.
7 But there is one thing which he said which
8I really do think needs to be corrected. If this is a
9case without this kind of high profile, I might say
10nothing at all. Mr Irving said that Professor van Pelt
11had no explanation for the many oddities in Bischoff's
12letter of 29th June 1943. That is an important document.
13In fact, when I re-examined on 2nd February, that is day
1414, page 3 to page 13 at the end, by reference to the
15little clip of documents by which Mr Irving sought to show
16the uniquely ----
17 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I remember that quite well, all the
18oddities, as it were.
19 MR RAMPTON: In fact, he explained every single oddity, except
20the missing year date in the reference.
21 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I remember that quite well, but thank
22you for reminding me what the reference is.
23 MR IRVING: My Lord, in view of my traditional right to the
24last word, I would reserve the right to write your
25Lordship a letter setting out the oddities in that
26Bischoff letter, with a copy to the Defendants.
1 MR JUSTICE GRAY: No. I do not think I am going to invite
2that. I feel fairly deluged anyway with paper. I really
3do. I have in mind both what you said were the reasons
4why you at that stage disputed the authenticity, and
5I know you still question the authenticity of that
6document, but I also have in mind, in a general sense, the
7explanations that were given by Professor van Pelt. Now,
9 MR RAMPTON: I hope what I am going to say will be a joint
10request. Because of all, as your Lordship can see, the
11interest in this case, much of it from overseas, I would
12ask that, perhaps a bit unusually, we could have --
13whenever the judgment may be, that is not what I am asking
14-- some reasonable advance notice of the date.
15 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. I am anxious for all sorts of reasons,
16including the consideration you have just mentioned, that
17it should happen sooner rather than later, but I do not
18know how much notice is in practical terms really
19required, because I will not know until quite shortly
20before I actually finish that I am actually going to
21finish on a particular day. I mean two or three days. Is
22that far too short?
23 MR RAMPTON: The only thing perhaps, if I might gently suggest
24it, is your Lordship might in fact finish before the day
25of judgment, if you know what I mean, in other words
26finish writing and have a fixed day, so that, even if your
1Lordship finished before that day is reached----
2 MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, all right.
3 MR RAMPTON: I think a week actually would in all the
5 MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is what you want? Mr Irving, I do not
6suppose you disagree with that, do you?
7 MR IRVING: I have my own reasons for wanting to have a lot of
8advance notice please, yes.
9 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I will do that. I think that is sensible.
10You are going to forfeit the last word, are you?
11 (The court adjourned)