The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit//transcripts/day002.03


Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day002.03
Last-Modified: 2000/07/20

   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Would you be content to proceed along the
        lines I have indicated and if you reach a point where, for
        example, Mr Rampton is putting to you a document which you
        have not had a chance to look at before, then you make

.                                      P-121

        that point and ----
   MR IRVING:  Precisely.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  --- we ask him, perhaps, to go on to some
        other point?
   MR IRVING:  I believe that the present atmosphere and
climate
        of opinion in court is, as Mr Rampton rather
indicated, it
        is not fair to sand bag your opponents with surprise
        materials.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  That is very much the way in which
litigation
        is now conducted.
   MR IRVING:  And we certainly have not done so.  I found it
        mildly offensive that the Defendant should imply that
we
        had.  I have subjected the Defendants to a stream of
        questions over the last few weeks on their reports
which,
        clearly, indicates which way we are thinking.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Well, may I now ask Mr Rampton whether he
is
        happy to proceed in the way I have just outlined?
   MR RAMPTON:  I will proceed in any way your Lordship wants;
the
        problem I have starting straightaway with Auschwitz is
        simply a practical one.  I do not have my Auschwitz
papers
        here.  I have to go and get them.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes.
   MR RAMPTON:  We will not get to Auschwitz today?  In that
case,
        there is no problem, I can start tomorrow.  If I do
not
        have to cross-examine today, then I do not have any
        problem at all.  I will start wherever it pleases your

.                                      P-122



        Lordship tomorrow.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  But, in principle, the idea of dealing
with
        Auschwitz separately is one that I believe you are in
        favour of?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes.  We were given an indication that Mr
Irving's
        opening in evidence-in-chief would take us up to about
the
        end of the week after next, that is to say, until
Monday,
        24th January, which is why Professor van Pelt is not
here
        at the moment.  So, in that sense I have a slight
        reluctance to start on Auschwitz until he gets here.
It
        is not an overwhelming reluctance by any means at all.
        I can quite easily, on the other hand, start with
        something completely different.  I can start with
issues
        arising from Professor Evans' report without any
problem
        at all.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  He covers really the whole gamut.
   MR RAMPTON:  I know.  From your Lordship's point of view,
that
        is perhaps a little inconvenient.  The alternative --
it
        is one I do not advance with any great warmth -- is to
        adjourn this case until the beginning of next week by
        which time Mr Irving should be up to speed on
Auschwitz.
                  I say that for this reason.  Although it is
        perfectly true that the source documents were served
on
        him last week, Van Pelt's report, the fact is that a
very
        large number of those reports, documents, plans are
        illustrated in van Pelt's report; that they have been

.                                      P-123



        available in the archives in Auschwitz and in Moscow
for a
        very long time.  The main report was served at the end
of
        July last year.  I do not have all of that much
sympathy
        with Mr Irving -- I have some, of course, because he
is in
        person.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes.  I think the point you make is
actually
        a fair one, that Professor van Pelt makes his point in
his
        report without actually exhibiting the source
material,
        but it is pretty obvious what he is saying.
   MR IRVING:  My Lord, it is not.  Architectural consultants
who
        have asked us for detailed drawings of many levels of
the
        construction work that went on over a period.  They
need
        to know where the light switches were, that kind of
        thing.  You cannot see that kind of information from
the
        rather smudgey photocopies that were exhibited to the
        report.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes.
   MR RAMPTON:  You do not do any better if you look at the
nice
        coloured photographs which Professor van Pelt has now
        produced in that regard.  They are just better copies
of
        what he has already reproduced.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I am very reluctant to adjourn the case.
        I really think we have to get on for obvious reasons.
   MR IRVING:  My Lord, can we not start the cross-examination
on
        non-Auschwitz matters which will certainly take us up
to
        the weekend?  I am sure Mr Rampton has a any number of

.                                      P-124



        questions he is curious about.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I am perfectly easy.  I think you had
between
        you reached agreement.  It appears, perhaps, that is
not
        really right.  I do not mind in which order we take
        things.  I think there is something to be said for
taking
        Auschwitz first, but if you prefer that it was dealt
with
        the other way round, that is fine.
   MR RAMPTON:  I can deal with a whole range of different
topics,
        not necessarily in an orderly fashion.  That is the
        trouble.  What I am anxious to avoid is when I do get
to
        Auschwitz in cross-examination, perhaps it might be
        tomorrow, for example, Mr Irving says, "Well, I am
sorry,
        I cannot answer that, I have not had time to think
about
        it or to instruct myself".  That is absolutely
hopeless.
        He then comes back, having heard my questions, and we
have
        to start all over again.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes, I see that.
   MR RAMPTON:  I am not really interested in attributing
blame
        for these things.  He is obviously not up to speed on
        Auschwitz and I do not really want to cross-examine
him on
        it until he is because it is an unfair contest, apart
from
        anything else.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Let us do it the other way round then.
Let
        us take the other issues.  That is really a course
that
        you prefer, is it not?
   MR IRVING:  That was my original proposal, my Lord.

.                                      P-125



   MR RAMPTON:  When Professor van Pelt gets here (which is
the
        week after next, I think) then I will start on
Auschwitz
        because that, I would think, would have given Mr
Irving
        enough time.
   MR IRVING:  We are looking forward to it, in fact.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  We will proceed on the opposite basis of
        taking all the other issues.
   MR IRVING:  I am indebted, my Lord.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  It is up to you in which order you deal
with
        them, but you will start with your reputation and
history
        which I think you can take quite ----
   MR IRVING:  In cross-examination?
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  No, this is in chief.
   MR IRVING:  Right.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Then it is really entirely up to you,
        I think, how much you want to say in chief, and it is
not
        very easy for you to do because in a sense you will be
        making a speech from the witness box, or whether you
want
        to simply submit yourself to cross-examination on
these
        various other issues, Dresden, Hitler's role, and the
        like.
   MR IRVING:  The court would simply certainly prefer for
reasons
        of integrity that the evidence should be under oath.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I would, I think that is the right way of
        doing it.
   MR IRVING:  Then the sooner I go into the witness box,

.                                      P-126



        therefore, the better.  That may well speed things up.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes.  So you are happy to proceed in that
        way?
   MR IRVING:  I am happy to proceed in that way, provided the
        Auschwitz stage is left until later on.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  It is going to be.  Mr Rampton, you are
        content with that as well?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes, I agree to that.  I will find something
else
        to start with.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I am sure you will.  Mr Irving, the next
        problem, and you can really choose whichever you
prefer,
        that is the witness box.  If you find it more
convenient
        to stay where you, I am perfectly happy if Mr Rampton
is
        happy at this stage anyway, for the evidence to be
given
        from there.  When it comes to cross-examination, the
        position may be different because I do not see that
you
        can really cross-examine along a row.  But it may be
        easier for Mr Irving to stay where he is for the time
        being.
   MR RAMPTON:  That is what Miss Rogers suggested.  It is a
good
        idea.  He has all his papers there.  When he gets to
be
        cross-examined, we may have to have a break while he
gets
        all the stuff up there because I cannot cross-examine
side
        by side.
   MR IRVING:  I would prefer, my Lord, the first part of the
        cross-examination should be done from box, but when we

.                                      P-127



        come to the Auschwitz stage where we will have papers,
        I might revert to your Lordship's original proposal,
that
        it should be continued with me standing here.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  We will see about that when the time
comes.
        But would you prefer to give your evidence-in-chief --
--
   MR IRVING:  I would prefer to give it from the traditional
        place.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Unless you want to deal with anything
else,
        I think you ought to go and be sworn.
   MR IRVING:  Very well, my Lord.  At some stage, of course,
my
        Lord, your Lordship is aware wish to deal with the
        Hizbollah allegations and the Farrakhan allegations,
but
        this can done at any time.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I think even that is best done from the
        witness box because this is a libel trial, it is a
rather
        unusual one, but you will want to give what one might
call
        some of the standard defamation evidence.
                          MR DAVID IRVING, sworn
                         Examined by the Court.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Mr Irving, I think the best thing is if
        I give you a little bit if a steer, if I can put it
that
        way.  Would you rather sit down?
   A.   I am not sure that I need scaring.
   Q.   No, the word I used was "steer" not "scare", simply so
        that your evidence has a shape that might make it more
        comprehensible.  Shall we start by your full name
address?

.                                      P-128



   A.   My full name is David John Cawdell -- I will spell
that,
        C-A-W-D-E-L-L Irving, I-R-V-I-N-G.
   Q.   And address?
   A.   My address is No. 81 Duke Street, London W1.
   Q.   Yes.  You have made a witness statement for the
purposes
        of this action and it is dated 22nd January last year.
        Would you formally confirm that that is so?
   A.   That is so.  I have made a witness statement and the
        statements in it are true.
   Q.   Yes, thank you.  Now, you can take it that I have read
it,
        but, as you pointed out a little while ago, the Press
is
        reporting this case and I think it would be right to
give
        you the opportunity to restate in summary form
anything
        that you wish to from that statement.
   A.   I do not have a copy of the statement with me.
   Q.   I think you probably should.  Do you have anyone to
help
        you fetch and carry documents?
   A.   My entire staff was called to the Bar just before
        Christmas, unfortunately.
   Q.   Perhaps if you can provide?  Thank you.
   A.   The statement is 18 pages, my Lord.  If I were to read
the
        statement out, it would take us until lunch time or
would
        that be too long?
   Q.   I am very much against you doing that because the main
        object of the exercise is, perhaps, to get your
evidence
        across to me.  I have read it, but I am giving you the

.                                      P-129



        opportunity to be selective and make in a summary way
any
        of the points that you want to make again in your oral
        evidence.
   A.   I think I have made the principal statements from
this.
        I repeated them in my opening statement yesterday.  My
        books have received high praise from established
academic,
        official and government historians in every country
where
        they have been published.  I just mention the names of
        Professor Hugh Trevor-Roper, AJP Taylor, Professor MRD
        Foot, Captan Stephen Roskill, Professor Norman Stone,
        Professor Donald Cameron Watt.  The reason I
        have mentioned those names, as your Lordship will see
in
        your files copies of the reviews and praise that these
        people have given to my works.
                  I have not only written about World War II,
of
        course; I have also written about other matters like
the
        Hungarian Uprising and the German Uranian Research
        Programme during World War II.

                  John Keegan, the Defence Correspondent for The
        Daily Telegraph (and your Lordship will be aware why I
        have stated this) has written:  "Two books in English
        stand out from the vast literature of the Second World
        War:  Chester Wilmott's 'The Struggle for Europe'
        published in 1952 and David Irving 'Hitler's War'" which
        appeared three years ago.  That kind of quotation rather
        gives the lie to the statement by the Second Defendant

.                                      P-130



        which we saw on video that nobody takes me seriously.


Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.