Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day006.14 Last-Modified: 2000/08/02 Q. Not only did Himmler take a risk that what he said to that bunch of Generals on 5th May might get back to the Fuhrer and he, Himmler, get a rocket, he said it again on 24th, did he not? . P-122 A. Can we see in exactly what terms? Q. Yes, you can. It is the next document, 188. Here I do not think I have the whole document. The first three pages, well, let us look at the front of it, first of all. It is translated, my Lord, on page 74 of Longerich, Longerich 1, or the relevant part is. It is a speech in the Reichsfuhrer SS on 24th. The date has been altered suggesting that it was going to be on some other date, do you agree? This is interesting. We will come to that in a minute. You see the date at the top has been altered? A. What are you looking at? Q. Document 188 in the file, H4 (ii). It is the next following document. A. Yes. Q. It is the speech of 24th May 1944 again at Sonthofen? A. Yes. Q. Can you translate the rest of the heading, please? A. "Speech of the Reichsfuhrer SS on 24th May 1944 at Sonthofen to the participants in a political ideological course (Army Generals)". Q. Can you turn over the page to the next page in the file? A. In the document or in the...? Q. In the actual document we have? A. Yes. Q. Such part of it as we have? A. Page 2. . P-123 Q. Page 2 at the top. In brackets you have: "RF SS Sonthofen", I do not know, but it looks to me as if that date has been changed from 25th or some later date to 24th? A. The typist has it wrong on the first three pages and it has been subsequently amended in manuscript or corrected in manuscript. Q. In places it has been amended, in places it is correct. A. Because by the time she has got to page 4 or 5, she has realized what the right date should be. Q. What do you think the right date was is what I am asking. Can you read it? I cannot. A. 24th May. Q. No, I know what the handwriting says. The overwritten typescript looks to me like 25th. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Does it matter? MR RAMPTON: It might do, yes. A. We have Himmler's diary for that date, his calendar, which shows clearly the speech was on this date. Q. That is right. If you look at page 32 as it has at the top, again the page numbering has been altered by hand? A. Yes. Q. There it is typed correctly, 24.5.44? A. Yes. Q. The very next page it is wrong again? A. Yes. . P-124 Q. That suggests, does it not, that these pages are for the final version of the transcript, if that is what this is, done, as it were, at different times, some have the right date, some have the wrong date. Is it not odd, Mr Irving, if they are transcripts rather than drafts, that they have different dates on them originally? A. Well, I have employed secretaries and you have probably too and dates are frequently things that are wrongly entered. Q. So the fact that one page or another has a date altered and another does not, the fact that some pages are in different typefaces, tells us nothing except that different people did different pages? A. That is a possible interpretation, yes, but, of course, it is precisely these pages that these phenomena occur. Q. Yes. Well, it goes on -- my copy does not, unfortunately -- the key page in this document is 31, four pages into the extract that we have got. A. Yes. Q. And the passage in question is at the bottom of that page, is it not? A. Yes. Q. I am going to read from Longerich's translation? A. These are three pages where the pagination has been amended. Q. No. It is amended on this page, but not on the next . P-125 succeeding page. Do you see? The pagination has but not the date? A. Yes, the pagination. Q. Pagination has but not the date? A. Well, it might be a clue as to when the retyping was done. She may have been retyping it the next day for some reason and the way you do when you are writing cheques out, you get the date wrong at the beginning of a year. Q. That is right. The dating on this page that we are looking at has been altered in manuscript in exactly the same way as the preceding three pages that we have, have been and they are the first three pages of the speech, are they not? A. Yes. Q. So that suggests, no more than suggests, in fact, ever so faintly suggests, a chronological integrity? A. It suggests to me that whoever has retyped these pages did so on 25th and hen realized her error when she looked at the dates and then changed 25th to 24th. Q. Look at the last page. A. I am not sure that it is important. Q. Well, I think it is. Look on to the last page we have, page 33. Both the date and the page have been altered, have they not? A. Yes. Q. Now look at the page in question, which is the fourth page . P-126 we have? A. Yes. Q. The last paragraph, and I am going to read from Dr Longerich's translation? A. Is this page 32 or 31? Q. 31, sorry. "Another question which was decisive", I am reading from the beginning of the last paragraph of the German, "for the inner insecurity of the Reich in Europe was the Jewish question. It was uncompromisingly solved after orders and rational recognition"? A. "On orders", I would say. MR JUSTICE GRAY: It should be in the singular. A. Well, "Rachsmehfahr" (?) would be "on orders", my Lord. MR RAMPTON: "On orders" or "in accordance with orders"? A. Yes. Q. Following in the sense of "in obedience to"? A. "In accordance with". Q. Yes. Again, the same point, is it not, Himmler does not take orders from anybody but Hitler, does he? A. His men do. The men who carried out the orders were taking orders from somebody, namely from him. Q. I see. You are suggesting that this is a reference by Himmler ---- A. It is. Q. --- to the orders which he gave to his subordinates? A. It is ambiguous. It is totally ambiguous, Mr Rampton, . P-127 this particular passage. It could be him referring to orders he had received or orders that his men had received. Q. In that case, there would be no reason, would there, for this page to be altered in case Hitler should see it and blow up? A. Yes, we are in no man's land here. Q. I will read on because it is, perhaps you may agree, a rather significant document: "I believe, gentlemen, that you know me well know enough to know that I am not a bloodthirsty person I am not a man who takes pleasure or joy when something rough must be done. However, on the other hand, I have such good nerves and such a developed sense of duty I could say that much for myself." "Developed sense of duty" is the words Grosses flicht flift berwusstein". A. Yes, conscious of his duty. "Berwusstein" is consciousness. Q. "When I recognize something as necessary, I can implement it without compromise. I have not considered myself entitled, this concerns especially the Jewish women and children, to allow the children to grow into the avengers who will then murder our fathers and our grandchildren. That would have been cowardly. Consequently, the question was uncompromisingly resolved". A. This is the Himmler gramophone record. He keeps on saying . P-128 it in speeches at this time. This is the only occasion and the one previously where he hints at an order. Normally, he swallows it, so to speak, he bites his tongue. Q. There we have two speeches, subject to your point about what I call your speculation about the reason why the pages change or the typeface changes. Then we have two speeches which say unequivocally really, especially if you put them together, that the mass murder of the Jews, the women and the children, was done by Himmler on Hitler's orders, do you not? That is what they say on their face? A. No. MR JUSTICE GRAY: When you say two orders you mean the 4th May or whenever it was? MR RAMPTON: Yes, 5th May. If you put them together ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: And 24th May? A. 24th May. MR RAMPTON: --- what he is clearly saying, and I am paraphrasing, but this is the interpretation which any right minded person would give to these documents on their face, Himmler is telling the Generals, as if they did not already know, "We have murdered all these people. It was a hard task, but we have done it. We have been successful and we did it on the orders of the Fuhrer"? A. We have to look at the entire body of these speeches, Mr Rampton, and say why is it that he hints at on order in . P-129 these two speeches, if we ignore the discrepancy in the pagination and so on at moment, but in none of the other speeches? It is almost as though he had run his mouth off here. He is not speaking from a prepared script. It was a very common trick in Nazi Germany, as in all dictatorships, to imply that you are doing something on the highest orders, "So you had better not question what I am up to, fellows", and I think it was entirely proper, the use that I made of this in my book on pages 630 and 631, looking at the original edition, and I felt it entirely proper to refer in a two-and-a-half line footnote to the fact that there is some reason to note that the two pages concerned in both speeches, both appear to have been retyped on a different occasion, shall we say. Q. Well, that is can be said of a whole lot of pages in that set which I have only got them all there, I have only about six pages? A. Mr Rampton, not in any of the other speeches, only in these speeches and these sections. Q. Maybe they were important speeches, I do not know. A. The difference between me and Mr Browning and the other experts is that I sat with the original papers in my hand, looking at the quality, the texture of the paper, whether it was a carbon copy or a ribbon copy, and so on. Q. We explored that. I did say on their face they appear to . P-130 be a reference to orders from Hitler to do that which had been done by the time these speeches were made, do they not? A. This is precisely why I quoted both speeches in full, those passages on pages 630 and 631 of my biography, so readers could draw their own conclusions. Q. That impression which one might take away from reading those two speeches is unsurprising, is it not, if one looks at what Himmler wrote to Berger on 28th July 1942. My Lord, we have looked at this document before. A. "This is a task which the Fuhrer has given us and which no one can take off my shoulders", is it not? Q. "Die besezten auf gebeten Judenfrage" -- "The occupied Eastern territories must be Jew-free"? A. "Will become free of Jews". Q. "Will become Jew-free", "free of Jews". "The carrying out of this very hard order has been placed on my shoulders by the Fuhrer". That is right? That is what the German says? A. Absolutely right.
Site Map ·
What's New? ·
Home · Site Map · What's New? · Search Nizkor