Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day013.05 Last-Modified: 2000/07/20 Q. I am coming to that in a moment, Mr Irving. Let us look at how you dealt with that entry, shall we, in a minute? That starts at paragraph 8. But, first, I want to draw your attention to what Goebbels did next, sorry, or before which is in paragraph 7: "On the afternoon of 10th November", that is after the meeting with Hitler at the Osteria, "Goebbels informed the Nazi Party chief of Munich-Upper Bavaria that the pogram was to be terminated, and added: 'The Fuhrer sanctions the measures taken so far and declares that he does not disapprove'". It is entirely consistent with the diary entry, is it not? Is it not, Mr Irving? . P-37 A. What, what Evans wrote or what I wrote? Q. No. What Goebbels wrote, "The Fuhrer sanctions the measures taken so for and declares that he does not disapprove of them"? A. Which passage are you translating? Q. I am reading from the text of Professor Evans. A. Oh, I see. I thought you were looking at something hard and concrete. Q. I told his Lordship that, unless forced to do so, I am going to keep off the German. It is much easier for us ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is working much better. MR RAMPTON: --- Anglophones. "The Fuhrer sanctions the measures taken so far and declares that he does not disapprove of them". That is exactly what Goebbels reported him as having said at the Osteria, is it not? Have you got the place in Evans, Mr Irving. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Paragraph 7? A. I am trying to read three volumes simultaneously. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I know it is difficult. The bottom of page 283. A. 283? Q. Yes, 283. MR RAMPTON: Then it goes on ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: Are you there, Mr Irving? A. I am, but I am wondering where he gets the words "on the . P-38 afternoon of". I mean, the timing appears to be important, and ... MR RAMPTON: Well, it is perfectly obvious. If he saw Hitler on the day, at the Osteria, and Hitler said ---- A. The note 107 refers to something dated November 11th. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am not following your point, Mr Irving. A. Well, I am wondering where he gets the phrase "on the afternoon of November 10". Q. Does it matter? MR RAMPTON: Because it comes from the text of Goebbels' circular. If you look at what Hitler said to Goebbels at the Osteria, it is perfectly natural that later that day Goebbels should report that "Hitler sanctions the measures taken so far and declares that he does not disapprove of them". That is exactly what he had already said to Goebbels. A. Well, we have a difficulty here. We have just one line, or one line from a message not from Goebbels but from a Gauleiter, from a Gauleiter's adjutant, the next day, in other words, it is already third-hand. Q. Then I am going to read on, Mr Irving. Top of 284: "In another circular", this is Evans, "sent out the same day to Gau propaganda officials, quoted in Irving's own book on Goebbels, and quite clearly reporting Hitler's views at the meeting in the Osteria, Goebbels added: 'An order is to be expected according to which the (cost of the) damage . P-39 resulting from the anti-Jewish actions is not to be met by insurance companies but by the Jews concerned themselves. Furthermore, a series of measures against the Jews will very shortly be implemented through the promulgation of laws or decrees'." I am going to show you, if you have forgotten, Mr Irving, what, in fact, happened next. But I want you to look next ---- A. I am finding it very difficult to see what point you are thrusting towards. Q. You will see what point I am thrusting towards. Be patient. These things have to be built in blocks, Mr Irving. Look at paragraph 8: "How does Irving deal with this particularly incriminating diary entry? In 1992, when Irving first read the Goebbels diary entries for the period 9th to 10th November 1938, he was convinced that it showed that Hitler approved of the pogrom". Here is a quote from Mr Irving interviewed by Kurt Franz, CBC Newsworld in July 1992: "'According to his diary', that is Goebbels, 'and I can't emphasise those words enough, according to his diaries, Hitler was closely implicated with those outrages. And that's a matter of some dismay to me because it means I have to revise my own opinion. But a historian should always be willing to revise his opinion'"? So far, so good, Mr Irving. Let us see how it develops. 1993, "A year later he was sounding a slightly . P-40 more sceptical note. Goebbels diary, Irving said", and this is part of the talk that you had been going to make in Australia but which you were not allowed to make, Irving "'describes how Hitler thoroughly endorses what he, Goebbels, has done, namely stating'", this is the top of 285. A. "Starting". Q. ..."'starting that outrage that night. This was a deep shock for me'", that is Irving, "'and I immediately announced it to the world's newspapers that I had discovered this material, although it appeared to go against what I had written in my own book Hitler's War. But even there you have to add a rider and say, "Wait a minute, this is Dr Goebbels writing this". Dr Goebbels who took all the blame for what was done. So did he have perhaps a motive for writing in his private diaries subsequently that Hitler endorsed what he had done? You can't entirely close that file'." Just pause there, Mr Irving, what motive did Goebbels have for, as it were, trying to implicate Hitler in something which Hitler knew nothing about? A. I think if you read the whole of my Goebbels book, and I am sure you have, you will note that there were several occasions on which Goebbels took actions independently and subsequently sought shelter in either writing in his diary that Hitler had sanctioned it, or actually ly went to . P-41 Hitler and informed him what he had done. One example I quote is the decision to put forward Hitler's name in the presidential candidacy in 1932 which was a public relations disaster. So there are several episodes where Goebbels acts on his own and then seeks endorsement from Hitler, not just this particular episode. So one is entitled to say, was this another such episode? Q. Mr Irving, the evidence is -- we went through it yesterday -- if you look at the evidence objectively, the evidence is such that it drives one to the inevitable inference that Hitler knew along and probably authorized what happened. There is no reason why Goebbels should put the blame on Hitler if, in fact, that is the case. Second, if Goebbels ---- A. Can I take these points one at a time? Q. Yes. A. So in cross-examination is always wise to ask one question at a time. There no reason why Goebbels should have sought refuge in Hitler at this time? Well, the answer is that by two days after the Reichskristallnacht, every finger in Germany was pointing at Goebbels. He had held a disastrous press conference before the Berlin foreign press corps where he had been ridiculed. Ribbentrop, Himmler, Heydrich, every top Nazi, the entire top Nazi brass, were pointing the finger at Goebbels and demanding . P-42 that he should be finally dismissed because of this outrage. We know this from all the private diaries, including from the diaries of anti-Nazis like Ulrich von Hassell, and his only protection was to go to Adolf Hitler. Q. But, Mr Irving ---- A. And, as I made quite plain, Adolf Hitler -- this is one of his weaknesses -- immediately covered for him. MR JUSTICE GRAY: So what is said in the diary is true, but Hitler was, as it were, unnecessarily and inappropriately taking the blame, is that what your case is? A. I think your Lordship has summed it, yes, and I would also draw your Lordship's attention to the fact that the Canadian video tape which quotes my initial apprehensions about what I had just found in Moscow is just four days after I returned -- six days after I returned from Moscow with the Goebbels diaries. You cannot reach snap decisions about the content of a document as tricky as this without comparing with all the additional surrounding countryside of documentation which is what I then did by a year later. MR RAMPTON: You may think that it is tricky because, of course, if it is not tricky, it immediately plants Adolf Hitler in the centre of the frame, does it not? A. Well, the tricky thing about the Goebbels' diaries, as I have repeatedly said, is they are the diaries of a liar. . P-43 Q. Suppose that Himmler, as I suggested to you yesterday, was as involved, and perhaps more so, than Goebbels, it would be in his interests to pass the buck. It was in all their interests, so far as they could, to leave somebody else holding the baby perhaps? A. Are you suggest that Himmler was involved in it? Q. I told you so yesterday. A. But all the evidence is exactly the contrary. All the contemporary evidence, including the private diary of Ulrich von Hassel, says that Himmler and Heydrich were absolutely livid with what had happened that night, because Goebbels had played fast and loose with the police forces which came under them. Q. Please explain to me, if Himmler and Heydrich were livid with what happened, the terminology of that telex of Heydrich, which we looked at earlier this morning, timed at 1.20 a.m. A. Which was the one restricting certain measures. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Saying continue, I think, carry on. MR RAMPTON: Yes, "Carry on, have a good time, do not damage German property, do not assault foreign Jews, carry on, it does not matter what you do so long as you do not injure German property". A. They apprehended that they were acting on Hitler's instructions and they found out at 2 a.m. that they were not, because Goebbels, in his famous speech at the old . P-44 town hall, had clearly given the impression that this was what the Fuhrer wanted. Q. And then? A. At 2 a.m., when the Fuhrer found out what was going on right across Germany, he called the people to his private residence and said, "What on earth is going on?" Q. Then, on 10th or 11th November, not only does Goebbels record Hitler's approval or lack of disapproval for what happened, he actually circulates Gauleiters with a statement to the effect that the Fuhrer sanctions the measures taken so far and declares that he does not disapprove of them. Now, if Goebbels had been lying in his diary about Hitler's approval, he was taking an awful risk, was he not, of telling everybody that Hitler did approve of it? A. This is typical Goebbels. This is exactly the way he operated and, although I point once again to the fact that your source for this circular is a third hand item by an adjutant of a Gauleiter, assuming that that information is correct, this is typical of the way that Goebbels would operate. He would tell everybody to, "Shut up with your criticism of me, the Fuhrer was behind it". Q. But it is true. The Fuhrer was behind it, was he not, Mr Irving? A. Unfortunately, the documents operate the other way. We have that document which I produce now in the original on . P-45 the headed notepaper of the deputy of the Fuhrer, saying from orders from the highest level these acts of arson and similar things against the Jewish property are to cease forthwith, a message sent out at high urgency, high priority, at 2.56 a.m. Q. Do we get those words "Jewish property" again? When you were caught unawares with that document yesterday, you correctly translated the word "geschaften" as shops. A. The important element of that telegram is not the translation of the word "geschafte" but the fact that this is an order being sent out by Hitler's deputy saying, "The highest level has ordered these things to stop", at 2.56 a.m. You cannot get out of that telegram. This is the one thing that destroys your entire case. Q. Mr Irving, it does not say it. It says the burning of Jewish shops and the like should stop. A. If you were right, Mr Rampton, that telegram would say "carry on, not enough, more so, more so", and in fact it says precisely the opposite. Q. It does not say precisely the opposite. We went through this yesterday, Mr Irving. A. If you are saying Adolf Hitler was behind the outrages, what is his deputy doing sending ought a telegram at 2.56 a.m., of which you provided a copy yesterday, without the heading showing that it came from the Deputy Fuhrer, saying these outrages and the like against Jewish shops, . P-46 Jewish businesses, are to stop. Q. No. A. This is exactly the opposite of what Adolf Hitler would have said.
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