Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day021.08 Last-Modified: 2000/07/24 MR RAMPTON: My Lord, can I intervene to correct one completely false point that Mr Irving -- I know it is a small point, but it does offend my sense of fairness. He just ploughs . P-67 on. The reference to what von Below said, or is alleged to have said, is on page 613 at note 44. The reference which Mr Irving gives for what von Below is reported to have said to him is "Author's interview of colonel Nicolaus von Below, May 18th 1968". So the other nine interviews can go hang. That is what Professor Irving is referring to. MR IRVING: And I draw attention to the fact that all that is before you are the three pages and it was, obviously, an interview lasting many hours. A. You put the pages before us, Mr Irving. Q. I have to ask a question about that then. Is it right you have only had three pages of the original German transcript in discovery? A. Is that the case? You will have to check what is in discovery. I cannot recall it, I am afraid. Q. Well, is it likely that the transcript of an interview lasting two or three hours would be longer than three pages if it is a verbatim transcript? A. Yes. Q. Is it likely that the original transcript therefore is in the archives in Munich and that only those three pages remained in my possession? A. I really do not know; there is no reason why the whole lot should not have remained in your possession. I do not know what arrangements you made about making copies of the . P-68 material before you sent it to Munich. Q. There is a lot that you really do not know then, is there not? This is the problem; you are an expert witness on this case, you had access to my papers and the archives and yet your answer again and again is that you do not know what is there, you did not see this, you did not find that. A. I am not quite sure what point you are trying to make now, Mr Irving, in this specific sense. As you know, we had three people who also had other things to do, 18 months to go through 30 years of your work, and we did the best we could do in the time available. I am satisfied it was thoroughly done. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, I am sorry to go back but you must realise that I need to understand what the issue is. You went to paragraph 11 of Professor Evans' report, page 261, and you had your argument with him about having to believe it. MR IRVING: The issue is purely which of us has the better knowledge of German, my Lord; it is only that. MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is, no doubt, a fascinating topic, but it is not one I am actually dealing with. The criticism is of what you wrote about Kristallnacht in Goebbels's biography. MR IRVING: Yes, which presupposes the knowledge of German. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Could you be kind enough to direct me to the . P-69 passage, where you quote, if you do quote, Goebbels saying what he said. MR IRVING: We have already had it better, in fact, in one of his other expert reports. I think it has been quoted from Longerich's report. We dealt with the matter of that ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is as may be, but would you be kind enough to point me to where it is in your book one finds the reference to this quote, so that I can make sense of your criticism of the translation? MR IRVING: It is not in my book at all, my Lord, that passage. I rely on it purely as evidence of the fact that this witness does not have command of the German language that he should have, to be an expert on a difficult matter like what the Goebbels diaries mean, for example. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Let us move on. MR IRVING: Page 265, paragraph 8, the indented paragraph: You have not indicated in that paragraph that there is an omission, is that correct? A. Can you point me to it then, please? Q. In footnote 66, you can see where the omission is in fourth line? A. Yes. Q. There is an omission of about 20 or 30 words that have been taken out, is that right? A. It is indicated in the footnote; no, that's a typo. There should be been three dots there, but the footnote gives it . P-70 quite clearly. Q. The words that have been left out are not reproduced in either version, are they? MR JUSTICE GRAY: What is the point, Mr Irving? Let us get to the point. Obviously your case is that something important has been omitted which affects what is there. What is it that you say has been omitted? MR IRVING: There are two points that I am saying. Firstly, we cannot always be certain that the quotation given to us by this witness indicates when there have been omissions. A. Sorry, Mr Irving, it does indicate. MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is futile. I am not even going to trouble Professor Evans. That is an absolutely futile point. It is clear from the footnote. What are you saying is omitted that makes any difference? MR IRVING: The words left out are: "As far as I recall from these first reports, it already emerged that these actions had been set in motion by the party or by subordinate formations of a party whereupon, in my presence, Hitler gave Himmler the order that the SS must keep out of these events". MR JUSTICE GRAY: Speaking for myself, that has no bearing at all on the point that is being made here which is that, according to Wolff, Himmler and Hitler were both surprised. Mr Irving, I am sorry to keep interrupting, but this cross-examination does not appear to me to be . P-71 grasping the nettle of the criticisms against you. You are finding tiny little points on which you hope, and sometimes succeed, in tripping up Professor Evans, but you are not grappling with what the criticisms are of your account of Kristallnacht. That is what you have to do, if you are going to advance your case in relation to this part of the criticism of you. MR IRVING: There are so many criticisms made by this witness of me that all I can really hope to do on any cross-examination is pick on central points, which I have done, like the events in Hitler's residence that night, and suggest that this witness is wrong in saying I had no sources for what I wrote. MR JUSTICE GRAY: You have not even touched on the inception of the events of this night, which is a key part of -- Mr Rampton will correct me if I am wrong or Professor Evans will -- of their case on Kristallnacht that Hitler was in on it from the word go. MR IRVING: We dealt with that at very great length under cross-examination of myself, my Lord, and my belief was that I would be testing your Lordship's patience if I went all over that ground again. MR JUSTICE GRAY: On the contrary, this part of Professor Evans is absolutely central. Professor Evans, I think, makes that point and you are taking tiny little points like whether a sentence has been left out of an account he . P-72 gives as part of his testimony. That just does not really affect the issues that I have to decide at all. MR RAMPTON: I would have to say this, my Lord. It is as well perhaps I say it now. Unless Mr Irving challenges Professor Evans on this and other topics, upon the foundation of his criticisms of Mr Irving's writings, which is not in every case but in most cases and in all important respects the way in which Mr Irving has treated contemporary documents, then I am afraid I will take it that Mr Irving has accepted the criticisms. MR JUSTICE GRAY: We will come back to that. That would, in the ordinary case, be a completely unarguable proposition for Mr Rampton. Maybe we will have to come back to it later on, but you hear what Mr Rampton says. I do think you have to actually tackle the fundamental points that are made in Professor Evans's report, and there is no point in, if I may put it this way, pussy footing around the borders of the issue because that is not going to help me, is it, really? MR IRVING: I was coming at it from the rear. MR JUSTICE GRAY: All right, I accept that. MR IRVING: I was trying to establish that this witness has an agenda of his own; that he is not reliable; that he distorts and manipulates evidence against me; that he is quite happy to ignore evidence which was before him for what I wrote; and that, on balance therefore, probably my . P-73 version of events is more accurate than his. Let me therefore just take one more point. Would you go to page 266, please, where again you are accusing me of falsification? Halfway down, four lines from the bottom of that paragraph, you say: "Irving, for his part, cites Goebbels diary entry, only first to cast doubt on its validity as a source, then to falsify it by reporting on the basis of this reference, not that Hitler ordered the Jews arrested, but he failed to prevent them being taken to concentration camps". A. Yes. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can you just pause, so that I understand what we are on at the moment? MR IRVING: Has your Lordship found it? MR JUSTICE GRAY: I have found the paragraph but you plunged into the middle of it, so I am just trying to remind myself what he is talking about. MR IRVING: Again, I am accused of falsification. Is this relevant or not, my Lord? MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think it may be; it is not perhaps the most important point. Can you, Professor Evans, explain because I am not quite taking on board what you are saying in your paragraph 11? A. I am trying to find the reference to the Goebbels ---- . MR IRVING: Perhaps I can help you. If you go straight to Goebbels's biography, page 276, you will find where . P-74 I quoted exactly that passage. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Whereabouts on the page? MR IRVING: I am sorry, it is at the end of the second paragraph, the sentence beginning: "The 'Fuhrer', claimed Goebbels in the diary, 'has directed that 20 or 30,000 Jews are to be arrested immediately. That will do it. Let them now see our patience is exhausted'". How can you reconcile that quotation from the book with your allegation that I falsified it, by reporting that not Hitler ordered the Jews arrested, but that he failed to prevent them being taken to concentration camps? A. I am trying to find the reference to where you say he failed to take them. Q. I have given you the actual quotation from the book where I stated that Hitler ordered them arrested. A. Unfortunately, I do not have a reference there. Q. 20,000 or 30,000 were, in fact, arrested that night, were they not? A. That is right, yes. Q. They were locked away for a few days and then released, is that correct? A. Weeks, a few weeks, Mr Irving. MR RAMPTON: Yes, the reference is the end of the first big paragraph on page 277, I believe. The first sentence begins: "But 20,000 were already -- -- ", but I am not sure. . P-75 A. I cannot find this. Yes, but 20,000 Jews were already being loaded on to trucks and transported to concentration camps at Dachau, Buchenwald, Oranienburg. Hitler made no attempt to halt this inhumanity. He ordered it, Mr Irving, and, in fact, as you indeed quote Goebbels -- but however you say in the passage that you are quoting on page 276: "'The Fuhrer', claimed Goebbels in the diary,'has directed that 20 or 30,000 Jews are to be arrested immediately'". MR IRVING: So, I state precisely what you say that I concealed? A. You are saying it is claimed, you are not saying that it is an accurate report. You go on, on page 277, to say that Hitler's involvement was limited to making no attempt to stop it. Q. Where do I say Hitler's involvement was limited to making no attempt to stop it, when I made it quite clear on page 276 that he ordered their arrest? A. No, you do not, Mr Irving. Q. "The Fuhrer has directed 20 or 30,000 Jews are to be arrested immediately". How else can you interpret that? A. "'The Fuhrer', claimed Goebbels in the diary, 'has directed that 20 or 30,000 Jews are to be arrested immediately'". Q. Goebbels is our source for it, is he not? A. He is one source. The other source is the telegram of . P-76 Muller ordering the arrests. Q. Do you make any reference ---- A. That is a telex. Q. Do you make any reference in your report to this early quotation on page 276 of my book? A. Yes.
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