Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day022.08 Last-Modified: 2000/07/24 Q.And you are going to say that it is totally impossible for any reader reading that line for the first time without the benefit of what I would call cheats, in other words printed versions of the document, to mistake in that ancient German handwriting "H A B E N" for "J U D E N"? Is that going to be your answer? A.Yes. I think you have to read this carefully. You thread your way through it. When you are reading handwriting, if you find something difficult to read or ambiguous, you then search for other similar letters, the same letter in other words in the same hand to try and figure out what that particular hand's version of a B or a D or an E or a U actually looks like. What we are dealing with here is your claim that that says, "Juden zu bleiben" or, as you say in Hitler's War in 1977, Himmler telephoned Paul with the order that Jews are to stay where they are. Whereas in fact it is "Verwaltungsfuhrer der SS haben zu bleiben", it is the administrative offices of the SS have to stay. From this text there are a number of indications which somebody who was not biased and looking for some evidence to the contrary, that is say an objective historian, that this is "haben zu bleiben". First of all, the fact that it is indented, the second line "haben . P-66 zu bleiben" does suggest that it runs on from the first line. The new entries here begin right next to the middle of the page. They are not indented. Secondly, this writer, as is common in this handwriting, generally puts a kind of what you might call a little inverted circumflex over a U. Q.Invariably or generally? A.Generally. Obviously, this is written in some haste. Q.So that is not the clue then? A.That is a general tendency and you can see that above "Besuch" with a little thing over the U. "Fliegermeldungen" is another one there at the top. There is another one over the U. So that is the general habit of this writer. Q.But not invariable? A.Well, you take that from -- that is one of a number of indications. That is the second one. Then you compare Bs and Ds. You can see, when you compare the B of "bleiben" with a B, or if that B in "haben" is a D, making it "Juden", then you look for another D to see whether that is the way the writer writes, and so on and so forth. I think we have been through this at some length in cross-examination. Q.You are going through it at some length, but can I now ask you a simple question? You have gone through this at some length. Does that indicate it is quite difficult to read . P-67 words like this? A.It was a conditional. I said, if you are having difficulty, if you are finding it a problem, then that is what you do as an objective historian. Myself, I think it is very clear from this. Q.Of course, if you came to the conclusion that it was reasonable, if you privately came to the conclusion it was a reasonable kind of mistake to make when one is reading that document for the first time, you would immediately tell the court, would you not? A.Yes I would. Q.You would have no hesitation in saying to the court that, yes, this is a reasonable mistake for David Irving to make. Although I do not like him, on this occasion I will say this is quite right. You would do that, would you not? A.I do not dislike you, Mr Irving. I have no personal feelings at all. But I do not think this is a reasonable mistake to make. Q.Yes. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can I ask you two questions actually, one is I cannot remember what "Verwaltungsfuhrer" is. A.Administrative officers or leaders -- Administrative leaders. Q.And the other is the extent of the textual analysis of the kind you have just described that you undertake depends in . P-68 a way on the significance of the document. I mean, some documents you really are not going to spend ages trying to work out. Is this a sufficiently significant document for it to be reasonable to expect an objective historian to undertake the sort of exercise that you just been describing? MR IRVING: My Lord, that is precisely question I was going to ask. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I have asked it for you. A.The significance that Mr Irving places upon it does require that, that is to say, when it says in Hitler's War that Himmler telephoned SS General Oswald Pohl with the order that Jews are to stay where they are. That is quite a significant statement and it, therefore, does require that kind of textual analysis. Normally, when you are -- it is kind of the lowest form of historical imagination, as it were, when you find handwriting difficult and you do this. You can do it fairly quickly, in my view, with this particular... MR IRVING: Have you done this kind of textual analysis with every single document you looked at, Professor? Does it take you very long to write your books? A.Yes, I mean, of course I do this with documents, yes, when I am reading through them. Q.You look at a letters, you look at little caps over the Us, you look to see if it is a B or a D? You do this with . P-69 every word you read, do you? A.Yes. You get used to a certain hand and if it is -- if you find difficulty in reading a word, as one frequently does, then that is exactly what you do. I published an edition of 350 handwritten police reports, as you know, and they were quite difficult to read. I frequently had to engage in this kind of exercise if they are written in different hands by policemen who only had a very elementary education. Q.But it would be normal if somebody came to you and pointed out and said, "Oh, I don't think this word is this, that word is probably that", then you would do that kind of textual analysis, but you would not necessarily do it with every word before you came up against that particular ---- A.Well, you would do it with words that were significant or difficult to read. I mean, normally, as I say, you get used to a hand and if you are reading through this, this is not a particularly difficult example of this particular script, in fact. Q.There are two obvious corollaries to the questions which I have to ask. The first question is, in your opinion, did I deliberately make this reading in order to serve my political bias? Was it deliberately perverse reading or was it an inadvertent misreading? A.I think it is a deliberately perverse misreading. Q.In other words, I knew the correct meaning and . P-70 I deliberately chose the other one? That is what the word "deliberate" means. A.Yes. Q.In other words, I knew it was "haben" but I deliberately wrote it as "Juden" and I hoped nobody would look at the original document, is that right A.Well, it is quite clear from this that it is "haben". I find it very difficult to think ---- Q.Not, that is not what I am asking. You are saying, "I knew that it was wrong and I deliberately wrote the wrong word"? A.Well, we are getting a bit into psychology here. I mean, as it, I am trying to second guess your thought processes here, but I think you wanted to find a statement like this, and when you found what you thought was a statement like that, you just said, "Hooray" and you did not care to look at it any closer. You misread this. You were mislead by your overwhelming desire to exculpate the Nazi leadership into misreading this as "Juden" instead of "haben"; whereas to any objective historian, taking even a minimal amount of care about reading this, it was very easy to establish that this meant "Verwaltungsfuhrer der SS haben zu bleiben". To that extent, therefore, I think you deliberately misused and abused this text. Q.Can I just explain to you the meaning of the word "deliberate"? "Deliberate" means, and I am sure my Lord . P-71 will correct me if I am wrong, I knew that the word was "haben" and I deliberately wrote "Juden" in order to serve a political end, is that what you are saying? A.I am saying that it is very obviously that this word is ---- Q.That is not the answer. A.--- "haben"; that any objective historian reading this would have very little difficulty in establishing this as "haben", and you put it as "Juden zu bleiben" which itself is grammatically an extremely peculiar phrase which should alert anybody to the fact that it is not likely to be what you say it is. You wanted it to read "Juden zu bleiben" and you made it read "Juden zu bleiben". That is what I am saying. Q.So your submission to the court is that I knew it read "haben" and I deliberately wrote "Juden"? I have to keep asking this. Will you give a simple yes or no to that question? MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think you got an answer "yes". MR IRVING: The answer is yes? A.Yes. MR IRVING: Thank you very much, my Lord. Now, the obvious corollary to that is, if that sentence is taken out of the book, does that in the slightest change the thrust of that paragraph? In other words, was there any reason why the sentence should have been put in? . P-72 A.Let me have a look at the paragraph, please. This is Hitler's war, 1977 edition. Q.Yes. My Lord, this goes to the importance of the whole matter really. If the answer is that it can be taken out without changing the meaning, then the last 10 minutes have been largely wasted. MR JUSTICE GRAY: No, I do not think that is right at all. So that you know why I do not think that is right, I will tell you reason and it is simply this, Mr Irving, that you might be able to say in relation perhaps even to every one of the passages that are criticised, "Well, by itself, that does not amount to much", but I think the Defendants' case, just so that you know what I am understanding it to be, is that if you put them all together, then they are of significance. I think that is the way it is put. I am not saying for a moment I accept it but ---- MR IRVING: Then we would have to look at the word "all" and see what "all" is. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, of course. MR IRVING: Are we just going to look at three sentences and pick two that are adjacent where two flaws have been made or are we going to look at the whole book? A.Right, yes. Well, the paragraph ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: Page? A.Page 332 in the edition that I have, my Lord, Hitler's War 1977, and it consists of an accumulation of falsifications . P-73 of documentary evidence of which this is one. MR IRVING: Do you agree that the sentence complained of was cut out of the following edition? A.Could I have a look at the following edition, please? Q.Or was it cut out of the Goebbels biography? A.Which do you want me to look at, Mr Irving? Q.Let us look at the Goebbels biography. MR RAMPTON: It is at page 427 of the 1991 edition of Hitler's War, I think. A.Right. Let us have a look at that first. Page 427? MR RAMPTON: Yes, 427 at the bottom. I think it is there actually. I do not think it is cut out at all. MR IRVING: Well, that is why I suggested the Goebbels book instead because the ---- MR RAMPTON: Yes, I have no doubt that is why. MR IRVING: Well, obviously, the error was pointed out to me relatively later on. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Well, it is exactly the same, I think. A.Exactly the same -- I will take your word for it, my Lord. MR IRVING: Professor Evans, do you agree that the error was rectified in the Goebbels biography in the corresponding passage? A.Where is this? Page, please? Q.377 approximately, is it not. A.Page. MR JUSTICE GRAY: 377? . P-74 A.377 again. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am not sure about that. MR RAMPTON: I think it is 379 actually, I think it is. MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is right. THE WITNESS: That is rather difficult but, presumably, we are looking for a lack of any mention. MR IRVING: That is right but, in other words ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: It has gone altogether, has it? Yes. MR IRVING: --- it has gone altogether? A.But, see, you are essentially lifting paragraphs from Hitler's War and putting them into Goebbels, but changing them slightly. Q.I am relying on a reliable source, namely Hitler's War, when I write the Goebbels biography. Do you agree, to answer my question, that I took the appropriate action when the error was pointed out to me and that I excised it from all future editions of the work? A.Can you give me some evidence to show when the error was pointed out to you? I think it was pointed out -- was this one of the ones pointed out by Professor Bruchsal or not? That is not really the issue, is it, though?
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