Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day018.16 Last-Modified: 2000/07/24 Q. --- I do not deserve to be called an historian? A. --- reinforced by what I have read in the transcripts over the last weeks. I thought it would be helpful to the court to outline my conclusions in advance, as it were, instead of keeping the court guessing and waiting as it ploughed through my report. But, of course, it is somewhat kind of upside-down, if you see what I mean? I mean, this is, in a sense taking the conclusion in advance. Q. Let us go now to page 26 where you talk about my publishing career, you say most of my books about the Nazi leaders and Nazi Germany. Are you familiar with the book I wrote on the German atomic bomb project, which was the first book ever written on that subject and which was very highly praised by Nobel prize winner like Otto Haan, Verna Eisenberg? A. No, I am not. I have not read that one. Q. This book was not provided to you by the Defence instructing solicitors to form your judgment on? A. Let me come back to the point, Mr Irving, that you have written about 30 books, some of which are more relevant to the issues which are at the centre of this case, and others and in the time available I am sure you would agree . P-137 I could not possibly read through them all, even with a team with two research assistants working for me. Therefore, I selected the ones which I thought were most relevant to the issues which are at the centre of this case. Q. But you have allowed yourself, notwithstanding that, some pretty sweeping judgments on my credentials, have you not? A. On the basis of what I read which I think is a fair selection. Q. But at the end of that paragraph ---- A. Let me remind you, this a 740-page report. There is an enormous amount of detail in it, and it simply was not possible to go any further in the time available. Q. But if you make seeping judgments about author's entire corpus as a historian over a 39-year writing career, and you say that he has not deserved the title of historian or he is not a scholarship and all the rest of it, one assumes that you are familiar with all his works, including these ones which have not been the least bit controversial and attracted the highest praise from people in positions to know? A. No. I make it quite clear in the report that I am not familiar with all of your works, that I have done a selection for the reasons that I have said, but ---- Q. You are familiar with my book on the Hungarian uprising? A. No. That seemed so far away from the issues at the centre . P-138 of this case that it really was not one that I should have read. Q. But you do pass comment on it on page 27? A. Yes, in this section, Mr Irving, I am simply trying to give a brief run down of what you have written. That is all I am trying to do. Q. But in the process of running me down you might also have paid attention to the book I wrote on the German Intelligence Service, the Forschungsamt, and on the German Eastern Frontiers, the history of the German Eastern Frontiers, but they appear to have escaped your attention also? A. For the reasons I have said, I did not have time to read all of your books. However, as I say in the report, I am quite satisfied on the basis of what I have read that reading more would only lead to the same kind of conclusions that I have drawn from what I have read. Q. You comment on page 28 at the end of the first paragraph on my website? A. Yes. Q. You say that it contains materials by myself or by people who are congenial to me and views that are congenial to me. Is that a fair description? A. Where do I say this? Q. At the end of the first paragraph on page 28: "This is constantly changing", you say, "but it includes lengthy . P-139 documents and analyses produced or reproduced by Irving himself as well as by others whose views are congenial." In other words, what are you implying is I just have a gallery of claqueur? A. No, not at all, Mr Irving. This is a section in which I am trying to outline the availability of documentation on which it is possible to base an assessment of your work. Q. Are you not familiar with ---- A. I am saying that simply because, therefore, it is possible to take this into account. That is all I am saying there. Q. Are you not familiar with the fact that if you go to my website you will find not only documents to support my cases, such as they are, but also opposing documents fairly and prominently displayed, and that I have included links to all the hostile websites in the manner which is now part of the courtesy and etiquette of the internet? A. Yes, and you include daily transcripts of this entire proceedings and indeed a copy of my own report. Q. I have made it available. A. But that is not the point I am trying to make here. I am simply trying to outline the fact that there is an enormous amount of material which was available to me in writing this report. Q. But you are not trying to make the point ---- A. It is not intended as criticism. I am not night trying to . P-140 make the point that you do not produce any others. That is not what I am arguing about. Q. But the way you have written it implies that I only print or reproduce or publish materials that are congenial to me? A. No, it does not. I am sorry. Let me read the sentence: "The is", it is the website I am referring to, "This is constantly changing, but it includes lengthy documents and analyses produced or reproduced by Irving himself, as well as by others whose views are congenial to him." That follows a sentence saying he has also made his views in a variety of, and so on, a frequent writer of letters to newspapers, all these books, that is all I am trying to say. Q. Where do you say in that paragraph that I also include the views of those which are diametrically opposed to me? A. It is not relevant to what I am saying there. What I am saying there is that there is a lot of material on which to base an assessment of your work. All I am saying there is that your website is part of the basis on which it is possible to assess your work. Q. You appreciate that running a website costs a lot of money. Is there any reason why I should put material which is opposed to my viewpoint unless I was scrupulously fair in everything I do in public life? In other words, the exact opposite of what you described earlier in your . P-141 report as being unscrupulous and manipulative and deceptive? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can I put it this way, so we can perhaps move on. Would you agree that it is credible that Mr Irving puts on his Internet website material which is opposed to him, such as your report? A. Yes, of course. Obviously it is in the interests of getting more users for the website to give to do that kind of thing. I do not dispute that at all. I am not criticising you at all. MR IRVING: Moving on now to qualifications which is 2.2.1. You quite rightly say that in all the examinations I took at school history was the only subject I flunked? A. I do say that. Q. Is that one of your lighter remarks rather in the vein of the thing in the pornographic section? A. Yes. I just thought it was a nice quote. Q. In fact you have four 'A' levels and I have nine. So how does this shape itself? A. I do not know how many years. Did you do them all at once? Q. I kept on plugging away. If we now continue to where, looking at whether you have to be an historian to be an historian, so to speak? A. Yes. Q. In your view, do you have to be an academic historian? Do . P-142 you have to have degrees to be able to write history? A. No. I say so here that this is not, I think, a particularly strong powerful criticism. The work has to be assessed on its merits. There are, as I say, any number of ---- Q. Very reputable historians? A. -- Reputable historians who do not have formal academic qualifications. Q. People like Walter Laqueur? A. Or Tony Fraser, many people. We are all agreed on that. MR JUSTICE GRAY: We are all agreed about this, so we can pass on. MR IRVING: My Lord, the point I am making is that paragraph 2.2.2 in the second line, having made that point and very generously saying there is a good deal to say for this argument, he then goes on to say: "As he suggests in the above passage, he has no academic as an historian". A. Then I go on to say in the next sentence: "Although these are serious initial disadvantages for becoming a professional historian, there are plenty of examples of reputable and successful historians whose lack of formal academic qualifications is as striking as Irving's." So I am agreeing with you. Q. Sometimes your bias does come through, does it not? If you go to the first line of the next paragraph, 2.3.2: "Irving tells anyone willing to listen that he is an . P-143 expert historian". That is a bit of a sneer there, is it not? A. I would be happy to withdraw that if you think it is a sneer. It is nothing to do with your academic qualifications. Q. When we are talking of withdrawing things, later on, on line 4 of that paragraph, you have withdrawn quite a lot, have not, where you put the three dots? A. Let me have a look. Q. Can you have a look, please, at the 1977 edition of my book Hitler's War? Do you have it, my Lord? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I have it. MR IRVING: Line 4. We will see exactly what you have left out. A. I do not think I have it here. MR JUSTICE GRAY: It can be provided. It is the introduction. MR IRVING: Page xii. A. I do not have xii here. MR JUSTICE GRAY: There is a bundle which does not have the introduction. Can you find one which does. A. It has the introduction. Q. That is where it is, xii. A. Yes. There are different editions of this book, my Lord. I think that is the problem. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, but you have the 1977 edition? A. Yes, I have it. . P-144 MR IRVING: I am terribly sorry, we are looking at the wrong thing. It is footnote five we should be looking at and it is the speech in Victoria. A. Yes. Q. I am terribly sorry. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Start again. MR IRVING: I have written in the margin "Pure Gold" so I think it is going to be worth looking at. I have said: "What is omitted? Pure gold, read it out". This is a speech, is it not, that I made in Victoria on October 28th 1992 on the subject of freedom of speech, having been just awarded the George Orwell Freedom of Speech prize and shortly before I was taken off by eight Mounted Policemen in handcuffs. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can the Defendants side produce a reference for this? MR RAMPTON: I am just trying. MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is very kind. MR RAMPTON: H1 (i), tab blank, page 29. MR IRVING: You have made two omissions, have you not? A. Can you point me to the page? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Page 29, yellow tab. A. Which is the page on which this statement occurs? . MR IRVING: I am sorry, my Lord. I should have come better prepared with the actual missing passages available. MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is unusual that you are not. . P-145 MR IRVING: Would it be helpful if I passed on to the next one? MR JUSTICE GRAY: I was going to suggest that. They have found it. MR RAMPTON: Page 31, my Lord, third paragraph at the bottom of the page. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Thank you very much. Page 31 in the stamp at the bottom of the page. A. Yes.
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