Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day017.04 Last-Modified: 2000/07/20 Q. Is this not exactly what happened with the state of Israel? Millions of these people were taken and dumped in Israel, so to speak, although they did it voluntarily? It was an uprooting and a geographical resettlement. A. The number of people coming into Israel of course came in gradually and there was a structure and an organization to arrange for and assist their reception. Q. Have you seen in the German files references to the planning for the Madagascar settlement? In other words, the necessary retraining, the agricultural specialists and everything being set up by the Foreign Ministry and by the German Navy, the Naval staff? . P-28 A. No. I did not see some setting up retraining. I saw them planning to take all the property and who would be in charge of gathering the Jews, and that it would be an SS state at the other end, but I certainly did not see, as part of the files on Madagascar, retraining. There was some toleration of Zionist groups in Germany setting up agricultural camps in the prewar period when they were trying to encourage the emigration of Jews, be it to Palestine or anywhere else. Q. Adolf Hitler repeatedly referred to the Madagascar solution, did he not, from 1938 in the Goebbels diaries right through until July 24th 1942 in the table talk? A. The Madagascar plan is a concrete plan, in which people are actually working on it. It is the period of June to September 1940, but there are references to Madagascar earlier and later. It is an idea that had floated in a number of anti-semitic pamphlets and the Jewish expert of the German Foreign Office in fact, who sort of arrived at this on his own, claimed that he got the idea from reading one of these pamphlets, so it was an idea in the air. This was one of the sort of anti-semitic fantasies that this problem would disappear if all of these Jews could be sent to the most distant island they could conceive of. Q. Out of mind, out of sight. Would you agree that it was Hitler's pipe dream? A. I would not call it pipe dream, because I think, if . P-29 England had surrendered, they would have tried to do it. They would have tried to implement it just as they tried to implement the Lublin reservation plan and just as they tried and succeeded in implementing the death camp plans. Q. Have you seen indications in the negotiations with France over the peace settlement with France, the armistice negotiations, that there was an attempt by the Germans to secure permission for the Madagascar plan because Madagascar was a French territory? MR JUSTICE GRAY: I thought it was British. A. No, French. MR IRVING: Madagascar was French but it became British after May 26th 1942, my Lord, or thereabouts, when we did the usual thing. A. They sent people to the French colonial ministry to get information on Madagascar. They certainly did not need French permission, and I am not sure how much this was a topic in armistice negotiations that were going on after the armistice, I do not know how much that was a topic between them. Q. You think it was a totally impracticable proposition, the idea of sending 6 million Jews, or whatever it was, to an island the size of Madagascar? A. I think they would have attempted it, and I think the results would have been disastrous. Q. Why would they have been disastrous? . P-30 A. Because I think a large percentage of the people sent there would have perished. Q. I think that the Jews are a very sturdy people. They have shown that by their forthrightness in Palestine, have they not? A. I think the conditions under which they arrived there, an island which the documents said clearly was to be an SS state, would not have been anything remotely similar to the conditions of an attempted and organized reception of refugees in Palestine after 1945. Q. The population of Madagascar at that time was about 1 million? A. I could not say. Q. The population of Madagascar now is over 13 million? A. I could not say. Q. So it could have housed that number of people quite easily? It is a country the size of Germany, is that correct? A. It would depend on the circumstances and indeed bringing Jews in, and all of their property taken, and under SS custody, I do not think one could say that they would have been housed easily. I think it would have been lethal. Q. If Hitler's intention was to exterminate all the Jews systematically, then why would he have had a pipe dream of sending the Jews to a country like Madagascar where they would have survived? . P-31 A. This is where we get to the interpretational issues of the intentionalist and functionalist. I do not believe at that point that he intended to destroy the Jews systematically. He wanted a problem to disappear. Q. When did the intention then develop? This is important I think. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. Let us get on to that. A. As I say in my report, my feeling is that there were two separate phases of decision making. Both of them stretch out over a period of time. MR IRVING: With particular reference to Hitler, please? A. It is an incremental decision making process. We have in the Spring of 1941, in preparation for Barbarossa, a number of his statements about what kind of war this is going to be, a war of destruction, a killing of what he calls Judao- Bolshevik intelligentsia and this kind of thing. This results in proposals coming to him, one of which is the creation of the Einsatzgruppen in its arrangement with the army or logistical support, the Commissar order, and that in the opening weeks of the war this led to the selective killing of adult male Jews in the regions that the Einsatzgruppen enter. Q. Can I halt you there for a moment and say, when he talks about the Judao-Bolshevik enemy, which half of that adjective weighs strongest in his mind, the Bolshevik or Judao? . P-32 A. I think for him it is a package deal, but in terms of what is wrong with Bolshevism is that it is the latest manifestation of the Jewish threat, so the Jewish issue is the prime one and the Bolshevik is the current manifestation of this Jewish threat as he understands it, because he has seen previous manifestations are the French revolution and the liberals. Christianity is the first Jewish threat. Q. There have been more recent manifestations, have there not, for example in the Spanish Civil War? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, this is getting a bit discursive. Can we just pin it down a little bit? MR IRVING: I am trying to pin it down. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Professor Browning, I know we are interrupting an answer and I want you to resume it, but can we just anchor it to particular dates? The date that is in my mind, and I would be interested to see the document if possible, is the 25th May, and I think it was 1940 rather than 41. A. The May 25th document is the Himmler guidelines for the treatment of the peoples of Eastern Europe, in which he wants to reauthorize the ethnic cleansing from the western territories, which Frank and Goring had managed to whittle down. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Is that not, in a sense, the start of it all? A. No, that is still in the ethnic cleansing phase. That is . P-33 the document in which Himmler is still referring to a total extermination as unGerman and impossible. MR IRVING: I was going point that out, yes. A. It is the following year, 1941 in the spring, when Hitler begins to talk about this war of destruction in the East, the destruction of the Judao-Bolshevik intelligentsia, that leads to the selective killing of adult male Jews in the opening five or six weeks of Barbarossa. MR IRVING: Can I halt you there and say which documents? Are you referring to the Kommissar order then? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can we look at some of these documents? A. We are referring to a collection of documents, the agreement between the military and the Einsatzgruppen in which the Einsatzgruppen will get its instructions from the SS but its logistic support from the military. Q. Is it not possible to argue that these are purely military measures at this time? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can we look at the document? I really do want to look at this document, the Kommissar order. MR RAMPTON: Your Lordship will excuse me for interrupting. You will find three relevant documents cited, or rather utterances by Hitler in a military or a semi-military context on pages 55 and 56 of Dr Longerich's first report. They are all three of them in March 1941 before Barbarossa starts. Perhaps Professor Browning might be given that, so that he can see it. . P-34 MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think it is quite important because, if this is too broad brush, it is perhaps not as helpful as it could be. MR IRVING: I agree, my Lord, because I shall want to draw attention to the military nature of these orders. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Do so please, but let us do it by reference to the documents. MR IRVING: They are criminal, there is no question, and they are Draconian, but they are military. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I understand that. So 55 and 56 of the first part of Longerich, Mr Rampton? MR RAMPTON: Yes, my Lord. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Thank you. A. Yes. I think, if we look at the very first one, in fact he makes clear that his campaign has both a military and an ideological side. As he says, the coming campaign is more than just a struggle of arms. It will also lead to a confrontation of two world views. Then he goes on, it is does not suffice to defeat the enemy army, Jewish and Bolshevik intelligentsia must be eliminated. So this campaign from the very beginning is to be conceived as more than a conventional war between armies. It has a strong ideological element and that ideological element relates to race, and particularly to Jews, and that tenor I think is very strong in his spring of 1941 declarations. As I say, when we then look at what was the . P-35 result of that, if one looks at the Einsatzgruppen reports, the overwhelming bulk of the victims who were shot in the first five or six weeks are ---- Q. Described as Jews? A. --- as male Jews. They kept some communist functionaries. They regret, in a sense, most of the communist functionaries seem to have disappeared, the Jews have not, and that these then are the main target group. Q. If this document refers to the Judao-Bolshevik intelligentsia, this does not explain why large numbers of thousands of ordinary Jews are being taken off trains or taken out of the towns and taken out of the country side and machine gunned into pits They are not the intelligentsia in any way. This document covers the intelligentsia. A. No one is saying that this is a hands on micromanaged order. This is a speech by Hitler in which he is declaring a set of expectations, and then there are various preparations made and proposals brought forward that, in a sense, cast his vision of a war of destruction into concrete terms. Q. If I could rephrase that document, if this was going the other way and the Russians were saying, we are going to invade Washington and we are going to destroy the capitalist intelligentsia, and subsequently very large atrocities took place and millions of ordinary Americans . P-36 being machine gunned into pits, you would not link those two facts, would you? A. I think one could, in the sense that one would say --- - Q. Just Americans with bank accounts or otherwise fitted? A. Well, one, it sets a mood in which destruction of civilian populations, killing will not be limited to armed soldiers.
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