Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day027.13 Last-Modified: 2000/07/25 . P-112 Q. Yes, thank you. You made reference to the Wehrsportgruppe, the military exercise units, and Mr Rampton rightly asked you, rather like the Americans who go running around pooping off guns at each other in World War II uniforms, there is that kind of comparison, is there not? The same kind of thing happens in the United States? A. I am shy to compare these different, you know, political cultures, but there are some to a limit some comparable things there. Q. There is no suggestion, is there, that I have any connection with one particular group, the Hoffmann group, which you mention in your report? A. No, I did not mention it in relation to David Irving. I did mention it in relation to, and this was an interesting, you know, action, with respect to the DVU and its leader, Gerhard Frey, who so eagerly tried to be legal and said in the letters to David Irving again and again: "Don't mention Jews, don't mention Hitler, just because to be not illegalized as an extremist party". So it was -- I wondered very much that this could happen in the late '70s with Gerhard Frey ---- Q. But there was no reason why ---- A. --- and Hoffmann. Q. --- you are not implying that I had any connection with that group? . P-113 A. No, no, not at all. It shows, you know, the extent in which right-wing extremism, although legal, tried to extend their behaviour. Q. Now you say that in March 1991 it was planned to invite me to Wansiedel? A. Yes. Q. To speak on Rudolf Hess. Are you familiar with the fact that I am an expert on Rudolf Hess and that I have published a book on Rudolf Hess? A. I know that you published a book on Rudolf Hess. Q. Yes. So would I be a natural speaker to invite to a function like that? A. I have to put it differently to answer it correctly according to my knowledge, and to my judgments, of course, that goes with it, the invitation to speak there was multifaceted. It was also how you present Rudolf Hess to a given audience, so they knew whom they want to invite and have there speaking, and the letters back and forth are very interesting in that respect. As I mentioned earlier, you did not answer positively because of the appearance of ---- Q. Well, this is the next question. A. OK. Q. Can I ask the questions in sequence, please? The book that I wrote about Rudolf Hess would have told them what they needed to know, would it not, what my attitude on . P-114 that man was? A. Say again? Q. The book that I wrote about Rudolf Hess would have told them what my attitude on that man was? A. Yes. Q. Was that attitude reprehensible, in your view? A. I say, I just say that in combination of the book and how you present the Rudolf Hess case in your speeches in Germany makes it valid for these neo-Nazis to invite you. Q. Is there any difference between the hypotheses that I set in my book on Rudolf Hess and the content of my speeches on Rudolf Hess which have been printed several times? There is no distinction? A. Again I would pinpoint to the context, the political context. Q. You accept that the book on Rudolf Hess was published by Macmillan & Company in this country which is one of our most prestigious companies? A. So far I know. Q. And that they would be unlikely to publish a neo-Nazi or Holocaust denial book or an anti-Semitic book on Rudolf Hess? A. I did not say that. Q. The reason that -- we now come to the point you are about to make -- I finally rejected the invitation to spoke at Wansiedel, do you know what that reason was? . P-115 A. So far as I got a clue by the diaries and the letters between Worch and you and others. Q. Tell the court what the reason was, so far as you know? A. You did not want to be on a demonstration or an event where also Michael Kuhnen would be there. Q. Yes, I refused to be in the same place as Michael Kuhnen. Does that tell you anything about my contact, to use that word, with Mr Michael Kuhnen? A. I did not say that you cooperated with Michael Kuhnen, but with the main successors and cooperators of Michael Kuhnen. So with the person you did not do a lot so far as the data are there. Q. Can I just ask you to look quickly at the little bundle of documents? It should be page 9 or page 8. It is a letter from me to the Der Spiegel? A. Yes, it is 8. Q. Page 8 or 9, is it? A. It is 8. Q. Is this a letter in which in the second paragraph I am telling Der Spiegel and their readers: "It is not accurate to say that in August I will speak at a function of Mr Kuhnen in Wansiedel in connection with a memorial function for Rudolf Hess"? A. Yes, as you said before. Q. Then when Der Spiegel refused to publish the letter, because they had said exactly the opposite, that on . P-116 February 17th 1991, if you will turn to the next page, please, I then wrote to my lawyer -- I am sorry, this is not the right letter at all. Do we have the right letter? A. Maybe it is my report. Q. Yes, it is. I am sorry. It is page 30. Page 30 of that bundle? A. What bundle? Your bundle, yes. Q. It is either page 29 or page 39, probably page 30. It is headed "Discovery 12.8.9"? A. 29 is a sheet of paper with nothing. Q. It should be headed "Discovery 12.8.9"? A. Maybe it is before, I do not know. No, it is blank. Maybe I get yours for a minute. Thank you. Q. Am I asking my Munich lawyer from Sprade, who is a reputable firm of lawyers, to take action to force Der Spiegel to publish this dissociation of any contact between myself and Mr Kuhnen? A. I have to read it. May I read the passage that is of interest? Q. Yes. A. Quotation -- no, Kuhnen had been identified in the previous paragraph as follows. Then quotation: "Also", that refers Der Spiegel, quotation, "Also, neo-Nazis like the self-proclaimed Fuhrer of the West German Brown movement, Michael Kuhnen, 34, intend to use Irving increasingly as a figure head. They plan", quotation, . P-117 'close collaboration'" quotation end, then quotation "with respectable person like this", quotation end, "Kuhnen hopes we will also reach circles that otherwise give us a wide berth". MR IRVING: Yes. Let me ask you a question on that now. A. So it is right again that you did not take sides with Kuhnen himself, but you took sides with the Kuhnen movement. Q. In fact, I made it quite plain to Der Spiegel that I have not the slightest intention of allowing them to use me. Is that right? A. You were very clear on that. Q. And can you suggest any reason why a magazine like Der Spiegel would print the opposite story? Would there be an intention to defame me? MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is neither here nor there and anyway, he cannot possibly say. MR IRVING: While you have the bundle in front of you, can I ask you to look at page 28? A. That is blank. There is nothing there. Q. Page 27? A. Yes, there is something. Q. Discovery 10.96? A. Yes. Q. Is there a letter translated from one of Germany's leading publishing houses, Robot Publishing House, to myself dated . P-118 July 2nd 1985? A. That is right. Q. It is a letter from somebody called Dr Michael Naumand. Does that name mean anything to you? A. Yes. Q. What is Dr Michael Naumand now, please? A. Minister of Culture. Q. At that time he was the Chief Editor of Robot Publishing House? A. Right. Q. Here he is writing a letter, "Dear Mr Irving, Mr Hochhut has drawn my attention" -- who is Rolf Hochhut, do you know? A. He is a playwriter in Germany, for example, on Pious 12th's relation to the Nazi period. Q. Is he a left wing liberal? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, I am not quite sure what this goes to but Mr Naumand is expressing an interest in your forthcoming biography of Winston Churchill. Where do we go from there, as it were, especially with this witness? MR IRVING: It is very difficult to do this with any other witness, my Lord. MR JUSTICE GRAY: You have done it with me. For what it is worth, I have got the point. I think you have better weapons in your armoury on this point. MR IRVING: I am being accused of having the whole rogues . P-119 gallery, to use Mr Rampton's phrase, of sleezy right- wing extremist friends and in fact I have a"du" friendship with Rolf Hochhut, who is one of Germany's leading left wing liberal playwright since February 1965. This was the point I hoped to bring out, I had hoped, in about ten seconds of cross-examination. MR JUSTICE GRAY: All right. Ask the question. MR IRVING: Well, do you know who Rolf Hochhut is? Is he a left wing liberal German playwright? A. He is a play writer, who attacked in his plays very harsh the silence of Pope Pious the 12th on the issue of the Holocaust during the Nazi period. Q. So he is the opposite of a Holocaust denier, then? A. I would say so, and he is a belover -- THE INTERPRETER: An admirer. A. An admirer of Hans Junge, who is on the right, so I cannot say if he is a left liberal or right. He is a playwright. Q. Yes. He is a playwright. A. A famous playwright. Q. Have you seen about 5,000 items of correspondence between me and Mr Hochhut in the discovery? A. I did not see 5,000 or whatever, but I saw in the diary that you met him in a very friendly manner. Q. Yes, thank you very much. You mentioned that Mr Staglich, the late Mr Staglich, was a former judge. Did he retire? A. Oh this case, I am not very ---- . P-120 Q. You do not know the answer to that? A. I am not very informed about that whole biography of Mr Staglich. Q. You do not know if he retired? A. There were quarrels because of his denialist or so books and, if I get a minute, I can answer a bit better than just now. MR JUSTICE GRAY: If Mr Irving puts to you that he lost his job, is that right, because of his right-wing views? MR IRVING: That he was dismissed from his position for his views on German history. A. This is my recollection, but I was not sure, so I am cautious. Q. Does this often happen in German? Are judges frequently relieved of their position by the Ministry of Justice for having incorrect---- A. That is seldom. It is related to this, especially -- for example, to other things also -- to the Holocaust denier things because of the state of laws in Germany. Q. Do you know how difficult it is to remove an English judge from their position? MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think we are straying a bit. That was not said defensively or anything like that! But let us move on. We are slowing down. MR IRVING: The point is I was about to come on to Gunter Deckert. Did the same thing happen in the case of Gunter . P-121 Deckert? A. Yes. Q. You mentioned the case of Gunter Deckert, who is admittedly a friend of mine. He has been in prison now for seven years. What happened originally? Was he acquitted by two judges? A. There was back and forth decision processes in Manheim and on higher levels of various courts, because of this denialist thing, and this leads to the whole issue how the German, after 45 for public, deals with this kind of incitement. Q. Incitement to hatred? A. And hatred and insult. Q. Defaming the memory of the dead? A. Insult of dead people, defamation, right. Thank you. This is a very decisive, very important thing in the whole debate between the judicial system and political and law-making processes. Q. All rather unpleasant. Can you confirm that the two judges in the Court of Appeal said unanimously that they found that Gunter Deckert was an outstanding teacher and a patriot who had done what he considered to be best for his country and they acquitted him on that ground? A. I have to see the events. I do not know. Q. Do you know what happened thereupon to those two judges, Judge Ortlett and another? . P-122 A. Give me the evidence, to be sure.
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