The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day032.16


Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day032.16
Last-Modified: 2000/07/25

                  Searching hopefully for evidence of
        "anti-Semitism" in me, the investigation by he Board of
        Deputies in 1992 came up empty handed in their secret
        report which they planted on Canadian government files.
        They confirmed that I had dealings with my Jews in my
        professional life, and they added that I "used this as an
        excuse" to say that I am not an anti-Semite.  These people
        are hard to please.  "He is far too clever an opponent"
        the Board wrote in this secret report, "to openly admit to
        being an anti-Semite".  "We endorse all condemnation of
        anti-Semitism", they quote me as writing in my newsletter
        back in 1982.  All of these things, including the actual
        1992 secret intelligence report filed by he Board of
        Deputies, were disclosed to these Defendants in my
        discovery.  The Defendants quoted a passage from a speech
        delivered, they said, in May 1992.  In fact, as my diary
        confirms, it was delivered in May 1993.  So it may be that
        the year was not accidental, because by that time my
        family and I had been subjected to a catalogue of insults
        by the leaders of these various bodies.  If a writer's
        books are banned and burnt, his bookshops are smashed, his
        hands are manacled, his person insulted, his printers are
        burnt down, his access to the world's archives is denied,

.          P-187

        his family's livelihood is destroyed, his phone lines are
        jammed with obscene and threatening phone calls, death
        threats, his house is beset by violent, angry mobs, the
        walls and posts around his address are plastered with
        stickers inciting the public to violence against him, and
        a wreath is sent to him with a foul and taunting message
        on the death of his oldest daughter, then it ill-behoves
        people to offer cheap criticism if the writer finally
        commits the occasional indiscretion and lapse in referring
        to the people who are doing it to him.

                  I singled out in this -- well, I am not going to
        comment at length on these evil allegations and slurs.
        They lend fire and fury to the original libel complained
        of, that is my view.  I submit that the word "racism" in
        the ears of the man in the Clapham Omnibus is about
        Stephen Lawrence and cone heads in the Ku Klux Klan.  It
        conjures up images of murder and thuggery and violence and
        foul-mouthed graffiti.  In deliberating on the conduct of
        the case and on the appropriate scale of damages, your
        Lordship will no doubt bear them in mind, these
        allegations made against me.

                  I voluntarily provided all my entire private
        diaries to the Defendants in this action.  They asked to
        see a few pages and I said "take the lot".  Fifty-nine
        volumes of private diaries, 20 million words on paper and
        on disk.  Mr Rampton produced from them one nineteen-word

.          P-188

        ditty attached to another quite harmless one about the
        "messica dressica" of my daughter Jessica.  To find in
        all those diaries and telephone conversations written
        since 1959 just one nineteen-word ditty that you could
        trot out for the media, does not suggest that I am as
        obsessed with race and racism as learned counsel and, for
        that matter, the newspapers that report this case too.

                  I repeat, this multi-million dollar Defence team
        has found one nineteen-word nonsense poem, recorded in my
        diary with other Lear- or Belloc-type rhythmic verses as
        having been recited to my own nine-month old infant who
        has, I am glad to say, grown into a delightful girl of six
        now, bearing none of the traces of the poison that
        Mr Rampton recklessly suggested that I had fed to her.
        Fortunately, I did not sing to her "Three Blind Mice".

                  Similarly, from my hundreds of lectures and
        talks these very proper spaniels have sniffed out a few
        lines of music-hall whit of the type that a Dave Allen
        might indulge in, with Mr Trevor McDonald as one of the
        butts.  That in Mr Rampton's words is racism.  One wonders
        which well-shielded part of the modern world is inhabited
        by learned counsel.  Can anyone go and live there?

                  The references that I have made to what is now
        formally called the Instrumentalization of the Holocaust,
        have also been adduced as evidence of anti-Semitism.  Are
        non-Jews disbarred from making a criticism that is made

.          P-189

        increasing vocally now by others like Professor Peter
        Novak or by Leon Weiseltier, the literary editor of the
        New Republic who wrote on May 3rd 1993:  "It is a sad
        fact, said the principal philanthropist of the grotesque
        Simon Wiesenthal Centre of Los Angeles, that Israel and
        Jewish education and all the other familiar buzz words no
        longer seem to rally Jews behind the community, the
        Holocaust though works every time."

                  I turn to page 89, my Lord, the third
        paragraph.  In general, I would invite your Lordship to
        pick out one such utterance as a sample, to reach then for
        the transcript of the entire speech, to take note of the
        rest of its content, its clear reference to the very real
        sufferings of the Jews, the liquidations, the Bruns report
        and the rest, and then ask: Was the remark true?  Was it
        explicable?  Was it rhetorically justified as part of the
        skilled lecturer's armoury?

                  Your Lordship has been told of my remarks that
        more women died on Kennedy's back seat than in the gas
        chamber at Auschwitz, the one shown to the tourists.  It
        is a tasteless but quite literally true.  It is, as I have
        shown in this court, even true if the main gas chamber at
        Birkenau is brought into the equation, crematorium (ii),
        the factory of death, because the eyewitnesses lied about
        that one too.  The Poles have admitted that the Auschwitz
        building and its chimney are a post-1948 fake.  My

.          P-190

        colourful language, my tasteless language, was a
        rhetorical way of bringing that extraordinary revelation
        home to audiences.

                  The audiences, I am told, are extreme audiences,
        of extreme people, although the photographs suggest rather
        differently.  They appear rather boring middle-age kind of
        people.

                  My files confirm that I occasionally addressed
        audiences of the Association for Free Journalism in
        Germany, the National Democratic Party in Germany and the
        German Peoples Union.  My Lord, those four documents which
        I have disclosed to the Defendants, they are English
        translations of the policy leaflets, the manifestos of
        these bodies, and in my submission they do not show them
        to be extreme in any way.  These were, furthermore, bodies
        that were accepted at that time under Germany's very
        strict laws as being legal and constitutional.  But the
        court is more concerned, I believe, with have individual
        personages than with bodies, than with the actual
        organizations.  I have not the slightest doubt that this
        court will find that I had no meaningful contact with the
        ugly rag-bag neo-Nazi extremists mentioned by Professor
        Funke, people with whom, to make the point quite clearly,
        the Defendants, their experts and their legal team seem
        more familiar than I.  Most of the names were completely
        unknown to me and the Defence have sought, in vein, for

.          P-191

        them in my diaries and papers, to which I emphasise yet
        again I gave them complete and unlimited privileged
        access.  This has not stopped them from bringing these
        names forward and mentioning these alleged links in the
        open court in an attempt to smear me still further with an
        eye particularly on the German media.  I urge that this,
        their conduct of the case, be held against them.

                  Characteristically of the weakness of their
        case, Professor Funke listed one entry in a diary where
        I noted "road journey with a Thomas" whose second name
        I never learned; Funke entered the name "Dienel?" So for
        as I know, I have never met a Dienel, but it illustrates
        the kind of evidence that the Defence were hoping to rely
        upon.

                  As for Michael Kuhnen, the documentary evidence
        before both Professor Funke when he wrote his report and
        before this court, is that I explicitly said I would not
        attend any function at which he was even present.  I never
        did and I never met him.

                  By way of evidence the court has been shown a
        number of videos.  Shorn of their commercial packaging,
        they do not amount to very much, in my submission.  In
        view of the weight attached to it by learned counsel and
        by his witness Professor Funke, my Lord, I have
        re-examined the raw video of Halle function of November
        9th 1991 at which I briefly spoke, and I have timed and

.          P-192

        listed the scenes that it shows.  My Lord, you will see in
        the footnote on that page that I have given the
        appropriate breakdown referring to the time on the video.

                  Your Lordship may wish at sometime to have the
        video back to check that these times are correct, or the
        Defendants' solicitors may wish to submit any corrections
        they feel are needed.

   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  No.  I will assume your time is correct
        unless I am told otherwise.

   MR IRVING:  Yes, unless otherwise informed.  The raw details
        are, when the when camera's meter shows 170021 I am first
        seen arriving at an unnamed hotel restaurant in Halle,
        accompanied by Mrs Worch and by David Leigh of he Sunday
        Observer.  At 17:14:40 I am again glimpsed, 14 minutes
        later, still at the hotel speaking to a reporter.  The
        cameraman and David Leigh then go off to film the rival
        processions during which I am at no time seen on film.  In
        fact I remained lunching at the hotel.  At 18:11:00 a
        truck is seen being rigged as an open-air platform, and at
        18:14:26 I am seen with two reporters watching from the
        edge of the square.  In my submission, my Lord, I do not
        have a particularly happy look on my face at all at what
        I am seeing.

                  At 18:16 I walk over to the platform, hands in
        pockets and mount it.  The man whom Professor Funke tells
        us is Dienel, and I have no way of checking it one way or

.          P-193

        the other, is seen to get off to the left and there is no
        contact whatever between him and me.  Mr Worch briefly
        introduces me to the audience.  I begin speaking at
        18:16:39 and the filmed portion of my speech ends less
        than three and a half minutes later.

                  When the off-screen chanting of slogans begins
        at 18:18:59 I am clearly seen to interrupt my speech,
        shake my head at them and gesticulate with my left hand to
        them to stop, and I am clearly heard to say, "You must
        not", because they are shouting the "Siegheil" slogans,
        Mein Fuhrer, and things like, "you must not always be
        thinking of the past".  I am heard clearly to say: "You
        must always be thinking of the past.  You must not keep
        coming out with the slogans of the past.  We are thinking
        of the future [voice emphasised] of Germany.  We are
        thinking of the future of the German people.  As an
        Englishman I have to say ...", and so on.  So I am quite
        clearly expressing extreme anger at these people who have
        come along with their Nazi slogans.

                  Six seconds after ending my brief speech I am
        seen to leave the platform without further contact with
        anybody.  My diary notes that I at once left by car and
        drove back to the Rhur in Western Germany.

                  Heavily edited, for example to remove my rebuke
        to these slogan-shouting people, whom I took and take to
        have been agents provocateurs, this sequence was shown on

.          P-194

        November 28th and 29th to British TV audiences in a "This
        Week" programme entitled "Hitler's Children, the New
        Nazis", directed by the German Michael Schmidt, Professor
        Funke's star witness, and with none other than Gerald
        Gable of Searchlight listed as the consultant, and in
        Despatches on the other channel.  This indicates whose
        hands were behind the editing.  Again, heavily edited the
        film has been shown around the world against me.  This was
        the thrice edited film to which I drew your Lordship's
        attention in suggesting there was evidence of dubious
        admissibility.

                  May I again remind your Lordship of my basic
        principle on lecturing.  Unlike the Defendants who have
        proudly stated that they refuse to debate with opponents,
        I have expressed a readiness to attend, to address all and
        any who are willing to listen.  Your Lordship will
        remember my letter of June 24th 1988 to my editor William
        Morrow, Connie Roosevelt, to whom I wrote:

                  "I have been invited to speak as a guest
        speaker at a right-wing function in Los Angeles next
        February.  They have offered a substantial fee and all my
        expenses, and until now I have adopted a policy of never
        refusing an invitation if the speakers meet my terms,
        namely a free speech and a fat fee.  On this occasion
        I intend to give the audience a piece of mind about some
        of their lunatic views."

.          P-195

                  I may secondly point out that were it not for
        the clandestine activities of the violent and extremist
        bodies dedicated to destroy my right to free speech and
        the rights of all audiences in the United States and
        elsewhere, at Berkley, at Dublin, Pretoria or wherever, to
        hear my opponents and equally dedicated to intimidating my
        publishers and smashing bookstall windows, where it not
        for their hate campaign I would have been able to continue
        in the normal manner with my exemplary professional
        career.  It rings hollow that the same shabby bodies who
        have generated the hatred against me now point their
        crooked finger at my and abuse me using the very
        considerable privileges afforded to them by this court, to
        continuing to make my voice heard whenever I can.  When
        I use words to describe them in detail, which they well
        deserve, they ring their hands lament about extremism.

                  I have pointed out that so far as Germany is
        concerned, none of the German bodies who invited me to
        speak was illegal or banned.  In fact when first invited
        to address the German Peoples Union I wrote to and
        telephoned the Germany Embassy, as the documents in my
        discovery show, and asked them specifically whether this
        was a legal and constitutional body.  The Embassy
        confirmed in writing on July 25th 1984 that was.  The
        extremism was in the eye of beholder.  The further to the
        left the beholder squinted from, the more distant these

.          P-196

        bodies may have seem from him.

                  We have heard a lot from Professor Funke, the
        sociologist of the Free University in Berlin.  My Lord,
        I am now going to pass over the next two pages and
        continue from the bottom of page 94.  As for his
        allegation, the allegation by Professor Funke, here in
        court, my Lord, I also ask you to disregard those two pages.

   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes, I think I know why, and I think that is
        very right and proper.

   MR IRVING:  As for his allegation here in court that I should
        have known that various allegations were going to be
        banned in years ahead, it is difficult for an Englishmen
        coming from a country with deeper democratic traditions
        than Professor Funke's, to implant himself into the brain
        or mindset of the authoritarian German mould where book
        burning is now once again de rigueur, where a German
        academic like Funke does not bat an eyelid upon hearing
        that a teacher is still serving a seven-year jail sentence
        imposed for chairing a lecture at which I spoke, where two
        District Court judges who acquitted that teacher were
        reprimanded and finally retired in disgrace by order of
        the Minister of Justice, and where governments recently
        have begun routinely banning fringe opposition parties and
        circumscribing even their legal activities.

                  My general response to this attempt at "guilt by

.          P-197

        association" which we have seen a lot over the last few
        weeks, is to compare it with the worst accesses of the
        inquisitions conducted by Senator Joseph McCarthy.  In
        Britain the courts have always viewed it as repugnant;
        most recently I believe Morland J in another court in the
        same building.  Hollywood's finest scriptwriters, many of
        them Jewish, had their careers vernichtet, to use that
        word again, by the reckless allegation that they had
        associated with known communists.  Now come these
        Defendants levelling the mirror image of these same
        charges at me.  McCarthyism was rightly exposed for what
        it was in more recent years and more enlightened years,
        and these Defendants for their own purposes are seeking to
        turn the clock back.

                  As far as the United States are concerned, apart
        from the Institute of Historical Review, which I shall
        deal with separately, the one organization identified by
        learned counsel for the Defence, as I understand it, is
        the National Alliance.  First let me point out that, no
        doubt with good reason, the Defendants have decided not to
        call their expert on political extremism in the United
        States, Professor Levin, and they have withdrawn his
        expert report.  I think "junked" was the word.  Mr Rampton
        used the word "junked" or "dumped" I believe.  Had they
        not I would have "debunked" it I think.  We have,
        therefore, no general expert evidence as to the nature of

.          P-198

        he National Alliance, and I think I ought to emphasise
        that matter.  The court is probably as much in the dark
        about this group as anybody else.

                  The Defence invites the court to study the
        leaflets put about by that body at one meeting, but could
        offer to the court not the slightest evidence that I was
        aware of such leaflets or, for that matter, if they are
        once again falling back on negligence, that I ought to
        have been aware of them.

                  If, as I submit, the meetings were organized by
        individual friends of mine acting outside whatever their
        capacity, if any, within the National Alliance may have
        been, there is no reason why I should have read such
        leaflets if they were indeed on offer.

                  As for the IHR, the Institute of Historical
        Review, I have little to add to what I have stated in my
        various written replies and on the witness stand.  It is
        clearly unsatisfactory, though not surprising, that
        establishment scholars feel the need to dismiss any rival
        body of scholars or historians as extremists, merely on
        the basis that these others propagate a different version
        of history from their own consensus versions.


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.