Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day010.10 Last-Modified: 2000/07/20 MR JUSTICE GRAY: So do I. Where do we find that, Mr Irving? If we do not find it in the report perhaps you could just quote in its context where one gets that estimate. MR IRVING: My Lord, with respect, if the witness agrees that Tauber attested to 4 million, we are only concerned with the figure. MR JUSTICE GRAY: He has made the point, which I think is a fair one, that he wants to see in what context and on what basis that 4 million figure was arrived at by Tauber. That is a reasonable thing for him to want to do, and I am simply asking you to identify where one finds it. MR IRVING: My Lord, I will have to adjourn that piece of information, the page number, until after lunch. If it is substantial, we can come back to it and retake it. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can anyone on the Defendants side find that page? MR RAMPTON: I am sorry? A. I can point to the page. It is page 178. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Of your report? A. 178 of my report, which goes back to Pressac 501. What he . P-81 says is that he came to this figure on the basis of conversations he had with various prisoners. Yes? If you allow me, I can probably quote the whole thing. I give the full quotation now from Pressac on page 501: "I imagine that during the period in which I worked in the crematorium as a member of the sondercommando a total of about 2 million people were gassed. During my time in Auschwitz I was able to talk to various prisoners who had worked in the crematorium and the bunkers before my arrival. They told me that I was not among the first to do this work and that before I came another 2 million had already been gassed in bunkers 1 and 2 and crematorium (i). Adding up the total number of people gassed in Auschwitz amounted to about 4 million". That is what he says. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Half of it comes from other people? A. Half of it comes from other people. MR IRVING: This information is being taken by Judge Jan Sehn in whom you repose great trust? A. Yes. I think that Sehn did a marvellous investigation. Q. Can you tell us something about these depositions were taken in communist countries? Would the man sit down with a pencil and paper and retire to a room and write it all out himself, or would it be summarized by the lawyers and he would be asked to sign it. A. I do not know what happened. I already told you . P-82 yesterday. I do not know what happened in that room where Jan Sehn was interviewing Mr Tauber. I know there were witnesses there because the original report mentions other people being present. That is all I know. Q. If I can just leap sideways to the name of Rudolf Hirst, the kommandant of Auschwitz, is it right that he was interrogated several times at Nuremberg? A. Yes, that is right. Q. And that, as a result of these interrogations, a deposition was taken or put before him for signature? A. Yes, that is right. Q. And you have now read these interrogations, I believe? A. I have read a copy of the interrogations, yes. Q. The verbatim interrogation transcripts? A. Yes. I do not think I have read every one of them but, I have read them in general. Q. Have you managed to form an impression there of how the Americans obtained depositions from their witnesses? A. Maybe you can lead me on that, because I do not exactly know where ---- Q. Would I be right in saying that, on the basis of the interrogations, the Americans would draw up a deposition, confront the witness with it, and say, "Sign here"? A. I cannot conclude that on the basis of the interrogations I read. Q. Very well. . P-83 A. Certainly not. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, have you left Tauber now. MR IRVING: I believe we have just one more point on Tauber and that is to look at page 481 of Pressac, where we do have four photographs of Pressac posing in various costumes, post war photographs taken by the Polish authorities who obviously regarded him as a star witness. A. This is Heinrich Tauber? MR JUSTICE GRAY: You said Pressac. MR IRVING: My mistake. There are four photographs of him posing in the camp costume. MR JUSTICE GRAY: What is the significance of that? MR IRVING: That he was a star witness, my Lord, of the Polish prosecution authorities, he was being subjected to what we call now photo ops, and they were relying on him very heavily, and that no doubt there was a certain amount of privilege being granted to him by the Polish authorities in the way that he was cooperating with them. MR JUSTICE GRAY: So he was making it up to express his gratitude to the Polish authorities? MR IRVING: It is not an unknown phenomenon for witnesses to make things up. Your Lordship will probably recall that, at the end of World War II, the whole of Europe was in a very, very sorry state. You did not have food supplies, there were no consumer goods and this was something with which the people who were in authority, whether they be . P-84 Poles or Russians or Americans or British, were able to barter. MR JUSTICE GRAY: May I put the general question to Professor van Pelt which I invited you to ask a little while ago? That is this. Are there aspects of Tauber's testimony or account which cause you to doubt his plausibility? A. I think that Tauber is an absolutely amazingly good witness. I find his powers of observations very precise in general. I do not have any general reason to doubt his credibility as a witness. MR IRVING: May I ask a question on that, my Lord? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Of course, yes. I was only asking the question that seemed to me to be need to be asked. MR IRVING: Would your impression be, or would it not, that, at the time he was being questioned by the Polish authorities for the purpose of providing this deposition, he was being confronted or furnished with drawings, documents and so on to help jog his memory. His apparent precision may have come from this kind of prompting by the Polish authorities. A. This is possible indeed but let us now just go back for a moment. Let us assume this happened, Tauber would have been confronted with blueprints which, sadly to say, for 40 years after the these blueprints came in the public realm, most people were unable to interpret. These are very technical documents. These documents are not easy to . P-85 interpret. It is not so that, if the blueprints had been there, and a man who is not an architect or even, for that matter an historian who teaches in an architecture school, when they are confronted with that, it is not that they immediately are able to make up a story which matches point for point information in the blueprint of a very technical and specialist nature. Q. But they would know, for example, the difference of left from right, would they not? If for example they described a staircase being on one side of the building, or the rutsche, the slide, being on one side of the building when the drawing showed it on the other or vice verse, if they showed it on the side that the drawing showed it when in fact it was not built that way? A. One of the things we have to remember is that Tauber gives a description of crematorium (ii). It is a general description. However, sonderkommandos of crematorium (ii) and (iii) had access to both buildings. Sonderkommandos have testified to the fact that they lived in these buildings but they shared facilities. So they would be allowed to actually cross that little path and go over to the other crematorium and back. So we have two buildings which are mirror images of each other, which left and right are completely turned upside-down, which both are used by the same people, but otherwise are identical. So if at a certain movement he gets left or right wrong. . P-86 I would not at that moment give such incredible evidentiary value to that, that he is making it up, or that he is totally confused. It is simply that these buildings were identical except for the left and the right of everything. Q. In your original book you made one claim about the position of the rutsche in a building which you then reversed in your report. Is that correct? A. No, I do not think so. Q. You stated that it was on one side of the building on the drawings, and that in fact it was somewhere else. A. I am happy to consider this and to discuss it with you, but again show me the passage in the book and show me the passage in the report. I will deal with it then. Q. This has all taken rather longer than I had hoped. I am sure his Lordship is getting impatient and we should move on. Can we move on now to the witness Pery Broad? Summing up on Tauber, one point, can I get you to make the following statement? Tauber described the cyanide being poured into the gas chamber of crematorium No. (ii) through holes in the roof. That is correct? A. Yes, that is correct. Q. If (and this is a hypothetical; it is one of Mr Rampton's if's) it should turn out there were never any such holes in the roof, then Tauber has lied, has he not? A. Then he would have lied, yes. . P-87 Q. Thank you. We now move on to Mr Pery Broad. P-E-R-Y Broad. This is, of course, a more general eyewitness because he is also of relevance to Auschwitz rather than Birkenhau, am I right? A. Most of his testimony on at least gassings relates to Sturmlager. And he only observed from a distance what was happening in Birkenhau. Q. Very briefly we are going to deal with Mr Broad. Pery Broad was employed by the British as an interrogator in a British camp; is that correct? A. I would wonder if you can be more precise about what "employs" means in this case before I can say yes or no. Q. Would it be reasonable -- your Lordship wished to say something, no -- to say that, in view of his special position within this prison camp, he was given special favours by the British, whether they be in the form of payment or accommodation or clothing or food or money? A. He was an inmate who was used in the inmate administration of the camp. Q. Can you tell me what happened at the end to Pery Broad back in the 1960s? A. Pery Broad was tried in Frankfurt and he ---- Q. As a war criminal? A. As a war criminal. Q. Eventually, he was put on trial by the Germans, is that correct? . P-88 A. He was put on trial by the Germans. I think he was convicted to two years or two-and-a-half years in prison. Q. Am I right in saying that he was convicted for the war crime of having participated in shootings at block 11 in Auschwitz? A. I do not know exactly what the judgment, what were the reasons for his conviction, what crime he was convicted for and what crime he was not. Q. In other words, your eyewitness was a murderer who was going at some time to be prosecuted for war crimes by the Allies, quite rightly, and he had bought a certain amount of breathing space -- is this not a reasonable presumption -- by testifying in various cases that the British were bringing in Northern Germany? A. Let us go back to the situation in a British internment or in a prison of war camp in, I think it was, Meklenberg, Northern Germany, very far away from Auschwitz in May 1945. If Mr Broad had not come forward to say he had been in Auschwitz, I think nobody would ever have found out because many SS men at that time were, basically, sitting in allied prison of war camps and were sitting there until they were released. So, certainly, Mr Broad, if he had not volunteered the information about Auschwitz, I think would have had anything to fear at that time because there were in that camp no surviving inmates from Auschwitz who could have identified him. . P-89
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