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Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day026.04


Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day026.04
Last-Modified: 2000/07/25

   Q.   Do you remember writing in that book on page 464 -- I just

.          P-28

        give it to you.
   A.   I have it here.
   Q.   You have it there.  Your take on the famous Himmler
        telephone call of November 30th, 1941, this is the way you
        interpreted it.  You have written, if I may say so, a very
        good account of the deportation of the European Jews, the
        German Jews, to Minsk and to Riga, and you have reported
        the fact that large numbers of them were liquidated as
        soon as they arrived, which is common ground between us.
        But then you look at the interesting business of the
        famous telephone call of November 30th 1941.  On page 464
        of your book, the third complete paragraph begins: "The
        shooting of Jews from the Reichs territory, on the other
        hand, after some 6,000 in six transports from Kovno had
        been murdered in Kovno and Riga, was initially stopped.
        In this connection there is an entry in Himmler's
        telephone calendar, which has the Reichsfuhrer SS who was
        at this time in the Fuhrer's headquarters making a note on
        a telephone call to Heydrich, or a telephone conversation
        with Heydrich, on November 30th.  Then there are the
        famous words, Jew transport from Berlin, no
        liquidation."  You attribute to this the fact that the
        killings of German Jews abruptly stopped, to use your
        phrase in the next paragraph, "der abrupte stop", this
        telephone call from Himmler, or this telephone
        conversation between Himmler and Heydrich, led to the

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        abrupt stop.
   A.   Yes.  No.  I am in a difficult position here because
        I wrote actually an expert report and I do not know how
        much we shall go back to my book, because in the book it
        says ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  It is a legitimate question about it, I think
        that is the answer, Dr Longerich.
   A.   There are two sentences.  In the first sentence I say that
        these shootings were abruptly stopped.  In the second
        sentence I said (German) well, we have an entry ----
   THE INTERPRETER:  Relating to this matter.
   A.   So I am trying not to make any conclusions.  I am very
        careful to say the shootings were stopped because Himmler
        ordered this.  I say we have this entry here and it is
        open.  It is actually more or less, it is open for
        interpretation.
   MR IRVING:  The conclusion you draw on in those two pages, if
        I am right, is that the killers in Riga had exceeded their
        authority?
   A.   That is my interpretation, yes.
   Q.   And therefore the killings stopped because of this word
        effectively from Hitler's headquarters, as you say?
   A.   From Himmler, who at this time was -- I was very careful
        when I wrote this passage because I know that it is a
        disputed area.  It is a minefield, if you want to say so.
        It came from Himmler and he was in Hitler's headquarters.

.          P-30



        I did not say he was in Hitler bunker because I do not
        know whether he was in Hitler's bunker or not.  So I think
        it is very careful and I think it is ----
   Q.   Yes.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I am not that I know quite what the point
        is.  Is the point, Mr Irving, that you are suggesting that
        the way it has been written by Dr Longerich in his book is
        to suggest that "keine liquidierung" actually meant "stop
        this altogether" rather than just "do not liquidate this
        transport"?
   MR IRVING:  My Lord, the point that I am making, the point
        which he makes slightly more strongly in the book than in
        his expert report, if I am right, that, in consequence of
        this telephone call from Himmler at Hitler's headquarters,
        the killings of Germans stopped because the killers had
        exceeded their authority.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  And that "keine liquidierung" therefore had,
        according to Dr Longerich's book, a general application
        rather than a specific one to that train load?
   MR IRVING:  I am not going to go so far as to say that, my
        Lord.  I just wanted to underline the point once more that
        this is a document.  You do not have to join very many
        dots to find out what happened here, because of course we
        had the police decodes the following day, which
        Dr Longerich obviously did not have at the time he wrote
        the book.  I am now going to move on to another document,

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        Dr Longerich.  We looked at this very briefly on Thursday,
        and this is the Furl letter.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   You actually have referred to this letter, have you not?
   A.   I do not think so.
   Q.   No?
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Can we have a reference for it, so that I can
        follow.
   MR IRVING:  I have given you a translation of it on one page.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Have you?
   MR IRVING:  Headed page 175, on the top left hand corner
        somewhere.
   A.   But not from my book.
   Q.   No.  You are quite right.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  It may be that this is somewhere in the
        Defendant's bundles and, if it is, perhaps we can follow
        it there.
   MR RAMPTON:  No.  I do not think it is.  This is a different
        version from the one that I was given last week.  Your
        Lordship was given it too.  It was another of Mr Irving's
        clips.  This is not a complaint against him, but I do
        confess to the impossible difficulty of keeping track of
        these things as they come flooding in.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I am having the same difficulty, as it were,
        on both sides.
   MR RAMPTON:  On I think it was probably Thursday or Wednesday

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        last week one got a rather larger extract from Gotz Aly's
        book, the same page but a longer extract.  It is in the
        back of J2, says the boss, so that is where it will be.
        Now we have a different version, I do not know why.  I am
        not suggesting there is anything sinister about having two
        versions.
   MR IRVING:  You are familiar with the book by Gotz Aly?
   A.   Yes.  I know the book.
   MR RAMPTON:  The new clip has a printed version of the English
        edition of Gotz Aly's book at the back of it.  I have not
        had a place for this new clip allocated yet.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I have only one page.
   MR RAMPTON:  Is that the page your Lordship had last week?
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I have got the first page of last week's clip.
   MR RAMPTON:  Now comes a new version.
   MR IRVING:  That is more like it.  Now we have it.  This clip
        is entirely connected with the Furl letter.  My Lord, just
        so you can see what is the clip, on the first page is the
        translation of the passages which interest, which is all
        that we have of that letter.  The second and third pages
        are the two pages from the Gotz Aly book, which is a very
        reliable authority, which quotes the letter in German.
        I will just take Dr Longerich, if I may, through the text
        of the letter.  In June 1942 Walter Furl, who is a
        administrative officer based in Krakow, wrote to his

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        comrades in the SS, "Every day trains are arriving with
        over a thousand Jews each from throughout Europe.  We
        provide first aid here" -- I think the word he uses
        verartsten -- "give them more or less provisional
        accommodation and usually deport them further towards the
        White Sea to the white Ruthenien marshlands, where they
        all, if they survive, and the Jews from Vienna or
        Pressberg certainly will not, will be gathered by the end
        of the war but not without having first built a few
        roads.  But we are not supposed to talk about it".  That
        is what I want to ask you about, Dr Longerich.  On the
        following page we have the translation in German, the
        original German.
   A.   I do not have the German here.
   Q.   Pages 2 and 3.  My Lord, obviously the significance of
        this passage is that the Jews were not being sent from
        Krakow to Auschwitz, which are just next door, but they
        were being shipped on to strange locations in the East.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Where is the White Sea?
   MR RAMPTON:  That is up in the north of Russia, beneath the
        Kola Peninsula, near Mamansk.  It is quite a long way
        away.  The white Ruthenien mashes I think are probably the
        same as the Pripyat marshes as far as I know.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Are they?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes, I think so.
   MR IRVING:  Dr Longerich, your contention is, is it not, that

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        this letter is camouflage?  Like the Gotz Aly contention also?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   I have to ask you then, first of all, what do we know
        about Walter Furl?  He was an official of the ----
   A.   Yes.  He was in fact the Deputy Director of the Department
        for Population and Welfare in the government of the
        Generalegouvernement.
   Q.   Knowing the answer already in advance, can you tell me if
        any members whatsoever of that department were ever
        prosecuted after World War II?
   A.   I have no idea at the moment.  I cannot tell you.
   Q.   None were prosecuted.  Is that correct?  You say you have no idea.
   A.   It is possible, yes.
   Q.   So they were not engaged in criminal activities?
   A.   This is a conclusion you draw from this.  We know that the
        German courts, to say the minimum, in the 50s were quite
        lenient to prosecute systematically German war crimes done
        by Germans.  So this conclusion, I think, does not lead to
        anything.  He was not prosecuted.  It does not mean that
        he was not involved in war crimes.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Especially he would not know in 1942 whether
        he was going to be prosecuted or whether he was not.
   MR IRVING:  No.  The point is, my Lord, if the Germans or the
        Poles or the Russians had determined that this was a

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        criminal office, they would have arrested everybody
        involved, particularly as director, and they would have
        locked them up for a long time.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  As things turned out, they did not.
   A.   If they were able to find them.
   Q.   Get their hands on them?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Let us have a look at the authenticity of the document.
        If you turn to page 216 and look at footnote 29, am
        I right in saying that this letter comes from the
        personnel file of Walter Furl in the Berlin Document
        Centre, which was run by the Americans after the war, was
        it not?
   A.   No.  You see, the Berlin Documents Centre, this is
        personnel.  Yes, it is personnel, that is true.  But we do
        not know actually who put these things into his personnel
        file.  It may be that the Americans just put letters
        referring to Furl into this file, so we do not know who
        actually ----
   Q.   Sometimes they did that, did they not?  They put negative
        photocopies in these files.
   A.   And other things.
   Q.   Is there any reason to believe that the document had been
        faked after the war by anyone?
   A.   I do not think there is any indication for that.
   Q.   Can you suggest any reason why Walter Furl, writing to his

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        Berlin SS comrades, which is the first line of the
        footnote, should have wanted to pull the wool over the
        eyes of his own comrades in the SS?
   A.   It was a private letter, not an official letter, and in
        his letter he is saying in the last sentence: "But we are
        not supposed to talk about it".  So he is talking about a
        secret.  Also in your translation, you translated the
        German term "verartzen" with "first aid".  Well
        "verartzen" could also mean we deal with them in a very
        general way.  It does not mean that they provide first aid
        and help them in a humanitarian manner.  But coming back
        to your question ----
   Q.   Can I just interrupt you there before there are any more
        aspersions cast on my translation, and draw your attention
        to the second page from the back of that clip which is the
        English translation in the English edition of the Gotz Aly
        book?  The second line says, "we provide first aid here".
   A.   Yes.  It is probably not the best translation.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  That is the literal translation, is it not?
   MR IRVING:  It comes from the route "Arzt" meaning doctor, as
        your Lordship is aware.
   A.   "Verarzten" could also mean to deal with.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I follow what you are saying.

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