Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day002.19 Last-Modified: 2000/07/20 A. Firstly, I accept the document was in all probability shown to Hitler. Secondly, I think in all probability he . P-264 paid no attention to it. The reason being the date. This is the height of the Stalingrad crisis. Every waking moment he is waiting for news that the fourth army that he sent to rescue the sixth army, to relieve the sixth army, had broken through the ring, the battleship Sharn Horse is out on the high seas in the Arctic Circle just about to be sunk that same day as it is shown to him. He has an awful lot of things on his plate. You asked me to imagine, my Lord, the situation and I can imagine the situation that the Fuhrer, Heydrich Himmler has thought that this is an opportune moment to slip a document into the heap to be shown to the Fuhrer which he can use one way or the other as time may come later on, either to say, "look how well I did, mein Fuhrer", or on the other hand to say, "But I told you at the time we had done that." There is a reason why I say this because we have another document later on called Korherr report with which I am sure the Defendants are familiar, where Himmler goes to some lengths to camouflage the documents so Hitler cannot see what is going on, and references to special treatment and so on are actually excised from the document before it is shown to Hitler. So taking this in conjunction with other documents, but I would attach no evidentiary value to what I just said whatsoever, because it is literally speculating on the basis of very thin evidence, on the basis of the date, on the basis of my knowledge from other . P-265 source of what else was going on at that time in Hitler's War. It is a mistake to contemplate documents like in vacuo. MR RAMPTON: Oh yes. A. At the same time as documents like this are happening, if I can put it like that, all sorts of other things are happening. Q. Sure, but one, only one, and you see, Mr Irving, we are not on this side of the court setting out to prove what did happen, we are only interested in the evidence which a reputable historian would put into the scales and weigh before arrival at a conclusion, one obvious explanation of this document, which in fact is generated by the document before it in the bundle if you look at it, is it not? The original report is dated 26th December 1942 and comes from the higher SS and police leader in South Russia, etc., does it not? A. Yes. Q. So somebody has taken the trouble back at Berlin to have this typed up in the large Fuhrer type? A. Yes. Q. Somebody has taken the trouble to put it in front of Himmler who has signed it as we see on its fourth page, my Lord, that is page 9, and somebody has taken the trouble to put it in front of Hitler. A. Yes. . P-266 Q. Why should they do that? A. Somebody has sent it to be put in front of Hitler, yes. Q. And you agree that the probability is that he saw it? A. Yes. Q. Or that it was put in front of him? A. Yes. Q. Why should they do that if they did not think he would want to see it? A. Because Hitler has personally given orders for the security operations on the Eastern Front. Hitler at a very early date after the operation Barbarossa began, the attack on Russia, issued instructions to Heydrich that he wanted to be kept regularly informed on the operations of the Einsatzgruppen. Q. And on 1st August 1941 Mullar, the head of the Gestapo told Einsatzgruppen that, did he not, or reminded? A. Yes, that is correct. That is the document I am referring to. Q. That is the beginning of the system, if I may call it that, and this is one of the end results, is it not? That is how the system matures? A. We are trying to justify the word "systematic"? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Do not worry too much about what Mr Rampton may or may not be trying to do. MR RAMPTON: It is not a joint exercise with you, Mr Irving. A. I was in the dark as to what was contentious about this . P-267 document, because I have actually used in document in my book Hitler's War, my Lord. I have given the data. I have given the figures. I have reported it in detail. There is no mystery about it. I have not tried to conceal it the way that my opponents have concealed the documents they do not like. Q. Mr Irving, I am not here representing your opponents except in so far as you have sued some people for libel. Beyond that I have no role. A. You are representing my opponents. Q. In this case. A. Yes. Q. What, you mean Professor Lipstadt has suppressed documents, is that what you are trying to say? A. You said I am not representing your opponent. Q. No, I am not. You said "in the way that my opponents have suppressed documents". I said I do not answer for those opponents. A. Those opponent you are not representing. Q. No, I do not represent them. Here is a document which appears to represent a part of a systematic reporting to Adolf Hitler about the numbers of people killed by the Einsatzgruppen in the East. A. I strongly disagree. This document is an orphan. Can you produce to me one other document shown to Hitler with figures of that magnitude reporting crimes on that scale? . P-268 Q. Earlier they would have been less. We do not have the other 50 or do we? A. I am saying that these reports ---- Q. Have you got ---- A. No. What I am saying is that the other reports in the Meldung series are not necessarily statistics. They may be as I gave one example, a typical thing would be a report on a two-man midget torpedo operation against the Tirpitz where Himmler's men had caught the British seamen involved and had them executed and that would go to Hitler as a meldung to the Fuhrer at exactly this time. So what I am saying is that this kind of meldung with these kinds of statistics to Hitler on an Einsatzgruppen operation is an orphan. You cannot produce to me one similar document in that series. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Have we got any of numbers 1 to 50? A. I have at home, my Lord, yes. MR RAMPTON: Do they look like this? I am not saying the wording is similar, but do they look like this? A. No. This is just something that Himmler sent in because he thought it is just as interesting to Hitler midget torpedo operations or the rubber plant that he is working on. Q. We are know at the end of 1942 with this document. A. Yes, but you are trying to justify the system, the fact that they were systematically put in on the basis of . P-269 reports like this and I am saying this is the only such report. Q. It is the only one which has survived? A. No. There is a complete series. Q. How many are there in this form with a large Fuhrer type? A. I have only seen one such report reporting statistics of this kind. All the others are in the large Fuhrer type. Q. They are? A. Yes, the ones about the two-man torpedoes and things like that. They make fascinating reading. They are obviously of great interest. Q. Would you suggest that that report to Hitler of 363,000 plus Jews executed in those eastern territories by the end of 1942 bore no relation to the order that the Einsatzgruppen should report to Hitler on the activities, on their activities, on their work, in the East? A. Yes, it may have born, and we know from the decoding operations of the Einsatzgruppen regularly reported their killing operations and there are enormous figures involved in them. Q. Then, Mr Irving, can we face reality? There is an order in August 1941 that these people shall report to the Fuhrer on their activities? A. The Fuhrer wishes to be kept constantly informed on the Einsatzgruppen operations. Q. That is right, he wishes to have continuous report. . P-270 A. That is right. Q. In the result, as I have put it, in the result in December 1942 he gets just such a report? A. Oh, I do not think you can say that because somebody gives an order in August 1941 and a document turns up, what, 16 months later this is the result of that. Q. Why not? A. It may have been but it may not. Q. Why not? A. If it had turned up two weeks later then I would say yes there is probably a very clear link between one and the other. Q. If in August 1941 at the time that the Einsatzgruppen were just starting their work there is an order in place that the Fuhrer is to be supplied with regular reports of their work, it is not at all surprising that by December 1942 that system is still in place and these reports are still coming in, is it? A. I disagree. Suppose in August 1941 you ask for a plumber to come and fix a sink, and finally in December 1942 a firm of plumbers contacts you and says, "here is an estimate for fixing your sink", it does not necessarily mean there is any connection between them. Q. It is not a very good analogy, Mr Irving. I do not ask the plumber for continuous plumbing over a period of time all over a large part of Eastern Europe. Better keep off . P-271 those sorts of analogies. A. But then where are the other continuous reports, Mr Rampton? I have not seen them. Q. No, I do not know where they are, Mr Irving. A. This is one report. Q. But this is a report of some of the work of the Einsatzgruppen in the East to be placed before the Fuhrer. A. But this was not the only task of Einsatzgruppen. The Einsatzgruppen had a whole bunch of tasks they carried out. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, I really do think that you ought to consider the position. Hitler gives an order that he wants to be kept regularly informed about the shootings by the Einsatzgruppen. A. No, he wants to be kept informed of the operations of the Einsatzgruppen. MR RAMPTON: The work. MR JUSTICE GRAY: The work, whatever you like, kept informed. That suggests he wants to be told on a repeated basis what is going on? A. Yes. Q. Are you suggesting that for some reason he countermanded that order or that it was not obeyed or what? A. No, I am not, but I am not saying that it is established to my satisfaction at any rate that this document . P-272 is -- I am sure what the relevance is -- that this document is the direct product of that order. Q. Well, forget about whether it is the direct product. Would you not think it a reasonable inference that there would have been reports in one shape or form or another to him reaching Hitler's desk of the number of people being shot by the Einsatzgruppen? A. One would have expected it, but this is the only one we have and this is what surprises us. Q. So you agree that one would expect that there would have been other similar reports? A. Yes, my Lord. MR RAMPTON: Mr Irving, let us look at it in a slightly different way. If, as you have proposed on occasion, the killings by the Einsatzgruppen in the East and some of the police battalions and some of the local malitia were merely, I say "merely" I do not mean to diminish what happened, but in the sense of structure, merely criminal acts by local maverick SS commanders and others, nobody would have dreamed of putting this document before Hitler,, would they? A. You are regarding it in vacuo again. The episode which I recounted was at the end of 1941. The clock has now moved on one year, many things have happened. Germany has started to lose. People are getting frantic. The tide has turned as Churchill himself said, it was no longer the . P-273 beginning of the end, but it was the end of the beginning I think Churchill said. This was Stalingrad, it was encircled, El Allgemeine, the battle had been won. The Germans were now seeing the writing on the wall and it may well be that Himmler thought this was a good time to show this kind of thing to Hitler. Q. And for why? A. Can I just remind you once again, this document is in my books. Q. Yes. We are going to look at your books in some detail further on down the road, not today, Mr Irving, except for one remaining purpose. A. That is what worries me about why we are spending the court's valuable time on looking at this document when I have gone into in great detail in my book. Q. Because, Mr Irving, I think your position is that mass killings ---- A. Yes. Q. --- not by gas but by other means were not systematic? A. I have said all along mass killings occurred on the Eastern Front. This is the Eastern Front.
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