Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day025.05 Last-Modified: 2000/07/25 Q. Can I draw attention to the last paragraph? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Which paragraph are you on; I cannot see the reference? MR IRVING: 3.1.11, my Lord, on page 28. A. Yes, and Bach-Zelewski ---- Q. With these two massacres in Mogilev, Bach-Zelewski began a whole series of further similar Gross Aktionen - major . P-59 actions. A. Yes, Bach-Zelewski was the higher SS police leader in the centre, so he was responsible for the killing actions of the ---- Q. A mass murderer on a most horrendous scale. A. This is your phrase. Yes, I think it is acceptable. Q. Somebody whose units kill those kinds of women and children, and carried out several such actions? A. Yes, It is quite fair to say that. Q. Even one of those murders makes him a murderer? A. I would agree, yes. Q. He has been used as quite a source by the allied courts and by the historians after the war, has he not? What happened to Bach-Zelewski? Was he immediately hanged at Nuremberg? A. No, he was not hanged at Nuremberg. Q. Or did he die in his bed? A. I am not sure about this, but the history of his persecution after he was not hanged by the Allies, I think he was prosecuted but, as far as I am aware, he was never sentenced, if I am not wrong. Q. He was prosecuted in 1963, is that right? A. 1963. Yes, that is true. Q. About 20 years after the war was, he lived life as a country gentleman in Germany. A. That is due to the fact that, in Germany, there was no . P-60 prosecution of Nazi war criminals between 1949 and 1958. It actually started in 1958. It took them five years to get the evidence together and then prosecution started. Q. I am just using this as one example, you appreciate that, but ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: Example of what? I am not following what the point is, Mr Irving. MR IRVING: The unreliability of testimony of people like Bach-Zelewski. A. I am not sure here. I do not refer here to Bach-Zelewski but if I refer to ---- Q. On page 3, can I draw your attention to paragraph 4? A. In this paragraph, yes. Q. Former higher SS and police leader Erich von dem Bach-Zelewski testified on this question during the Nuremberg trials. A. Yes, but this example is not the only source. I quoted here to say that he referred to a meeting with Himmler and just before the beginning of war against the Soviet Union, and that Himmler stated there that the Slavic population had to be decimated by 30 million. We have other sources for the same fact. There is, for instance, referring them to Goring, the Goring's remarks to Ciano and particularly important here is meeting of the Secretary of States of 2nd May 1941, and I am referring them to more documents which actually show . P-61 that there was plan in the German leadership to kill millions of Slavs in the war against the Soviet Union. So I am not relying only on Bach-Zelewski's statement; it is actually ---- Q. Why do you rely on him at all if at he has such very dubious credentials. A. Bach-Zelewski was a witness in the main trial. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am sorry, I am going to interrupt again if I may because I am simply not following the point here. I thought that it was accepted that the object of invading Russia was do decimate the Slav population. MR IRVING: Not by me, my Lord, but that is not the point that I am trying to make. The point I am trying to make is that if we are going to write expert reports, one should avoid sources like Bach-Zelewski like the plague. A. No. I think you can use these statements, if you find that this is -- I am mainly relying on documentary evidence but, of course, one can use this postwar evidence if it is supported by other sources. I think this is something which is generally accepted among historians. I am not saying that the plan of the Germans to decimate -- we only have Bach-Zelewski as evidence for this plan. We have lot of evidence for that. Bach-Zelewski was a colourful figure, so he said, in his interrogation, that there are other very interesting things, and I think one should follow them, one should not . P-62 just ignore them. Q. Like Scheherezade, she sang like a canary, did she not, in order to survivor? A. That is your comparison. Q. Can I now take you further down that paragraph No. 4, where are you quoting now the directives which stated that, without doubt, umpteen millions of people will starve to death when we take what we need from the country. The original German, you have rather embellished it, have you not? "Zig Millionen Menschen verhungern", verhungern, that just means go hungry. A. Yes, and then it goes on: "Wenn von uns das fur uns Notwendige aus dem Lande herausgeholt wird" - if you take out of country which is necessary for us. Q. What we need, yes, but is it not that they are not starving death? You have embellished that slightly, and that is the whole point. A. They are starving to death because they are agricultural products which were taken out of the country. There is nothing left for them so they will starve to death. Q. Starve to death is: "Ein Hunger tut erleben", or something like that. "Verhungern" is just "will go hungry". A. The context is quite clear, because "we will take everything out of the country which we need for ourselves"; that is the context. . P-63 Q. Will you agree that that was a bit clever translation by you to make the point you wanted to make? A. Sorry this is ---- Q. Paragraph 4, four lines from the bottom, on page 3. A. I think it is from the context. Q. It is fundamental to your argument, of course. MR RAMPTON: I do wish Mr Irving would stop interrupting. It is very difficult to follow the witness. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I personally would also like to move on, because we are not here concerned with criticising the historical approach of Dr Longerich but dealing with the criticisms he makes of your historical approach, Mr Irving. I think spending a very long time on this paragraph in which he cites really quite a number of sources for what, he says, was the plan to kill the very large number of Slavs. I do not think that is productive. I think there are substantive points that you have to tackle. MR IRVING: If, on the one hand, your Lordship says that there is great deal of evidence for the desire to decimate the Slavs by whatever means, then it turns out that one of his sources is obtained by just a clever translation of a word. A. No. The meaning of the words becomes clear from the context. It is not the only source. If you read the next sentence, it is the guidelines for the economic . P-64 organization of the East Agricultural Staff Group: "Many tens of millions of people will be made superfluous in this area and will die or be forced to emigrate to Siberia". I think this is quite clear. Q. Dr Longerich, are you not confusing there the possible consequence with a criminal intent, which are two totally different things? A. The intent was to systematically take the agricultural products out of country and to use them for their own purposes, and to let the population in this country starve to death. This was the intention. Q. Yes. On page 5, paragraph 3. A. That is the background. I quoted this because this is the background for the Holocaust. I am not making a statement about the starvation of the Slavic population. I think that this is background information that you need to understand the violent and cruel intent of the SS when they invaded the Soviet Union. This is background material. Q. Dr Longerich, do you agree that if I translated "verhungern" as starve to death, then I would have been rightly criticised for mistranslation or distortion? A. Probably, but again I repeat myself, I think the context is clear but they just do not starve to death because of a catastrophe; the natural catastrophe is because it is a part of the systematic plan. . P-65 Q. On page 5, paragraph 3, you say that the Einsatzgruppen consisted of 3,000 men. Is that the total number of men? A. About a little bit more than 3,000 I think. Yes, it is 3,000. Yes. Q. That seems a remarkably small force if we are to believe the enormous statistical figures that have been thrust upon us over the last few weeks. A. I do not know whether it is mentioned in the next paragraph, but the forces who carried out this killing operation consists of the Einsatzgruppen, of police battalions and of the two Waffen SS Breigetz, so altogether this was a force of about 30,000 men. We have, as far as the Einsatzgruppen are concerned, this excellent documentation, the Ereignismeldung uber der SSR, but it is also clear from the documents that also other units like the Order Police units like the Waffen SS Breigetz were active in killing people. We have sources which explain to us that the Wehrmacht, in many cases, was actively involved in these killings, and most important is that the SS and the police built up a force of auxiliary policemen in the area which had a strength in 1942 for about 300,000 men. We have a lot of evidence that these men were also actively involved in the killings. Q. They were using the locals, were they? A. They use the locals as auxiliary police. The general rule was that then the SS, the SD people would carry out their . P-66 killings and so they would shoot people themselves, and use the auxiliary SS to seal off the area. So it is not a problem manpower shortage to carry out this operation. Q. On page 6, we are going to look at paragraph 6 which is the Heydrich order of July 2nd 1941. You are familiar with that order, are you not? A. Yes. Q. This is one which, in part for example, said to instigate pogroms or where pogroms were instigated by the locals to turn a blind eye and generally to jolly them along and not to get in the way. A. Yes. Q. I have two questions on this document, Dr Longerich. The first one is where does it come from? Is it from Russian files or from Western files? A. Are we talking about the 2nd July document? Q. The 2nd July document. A. This is a document which comes from the Moscow archive. It was given to the court in Koblenz which dealt with the Heuser case in 1963. It has been available in the Federal archives since 1963. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Is the authenticity of that document challenged? A. Yes. MR IRVING: I just want to ask him a question. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Not by you, by Mr Irving. . P-67 MR IRVING: No. MR JUSTICE GRAY: If it is, challenge it, if it is not, let us move on. MR IRVING: I can only ask the most general questions. I can say, Dr Longerich, are you thoroughly content that all the documents that come from the Soviet Union ----? MR JUSTICE GRAY: No, Mr Irving, that will not do. Are you suggesting that it is not an authentic document? If so, cross-examine on that basis. If you are not suggesting that it is not authentic, then move on. MR IRVING: Would you look at the last line on that page please: "Jews in Party and State functions". Will you not accept that this limits the killing of Jews in this document, just the "Jews in Party and State functions"? A. I have to go back to this point I made yesterday. Q. Yes? A. There is a mistake here and I have to repeat that ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, I remember the point. A. The word "all" should be in the first line, so this has to be read as: "All Jews and Party and State functions", so we know that the Soviet Union was a country where the state played an enormous role. So this would apply to, let us say, teachers, to every Civil, not only to every Civil Servant, it would apply to any manager of a State opened shop, for instance. So I think the number is quite high, it is several hundred thousand. I forgot to say . P-68 when we went through this document yesterday, I think ---- MR IRVING: You look at the unsoweiter, do you not? A. I forget this yesterday. In the same document Heydrich suggested to instigate pogroms. If you have a pogrom you cannot actually ---- Q. Limit it? A. Limit it. You do not have any control about who you are going to kill. A pogrom is a wide massacre. So if you encourage the local population to organize massacres, you do not have any control about the outcome of this massacre. So I think I read this, this telegram, or this instruction, sorry, actually in this is a kind of message. You can kill all Jews of party and state function, but there is not a specific definition of the people who are going to be killed. Jews, if they are suspicious, if they are propagandist, etc., you can also go to kill them. There is also a reference in the guidelines on page 5, in the guidelines for the troops in Russia. These are guidelines which are read out on company 11, every company of Wehrmacht. It says in sentence 2: "The struggle demands ruthless energetic and drastic measures against the Bolsheviks agitators, guerrillas, saboteurs and Jews", and Jews. There is nothing about Jews in party and state position. So every soldier of the Wehrmacht knew that this was a war against the Jews, among others. . P-69 Q. It does not say, that paragraph, "You are going kill all the Bolsheviks agitators"? A. No, but it says. Q. It says just: "Drastic measures, ruthless"? A. Exactly energetic and drastic measures, and we know that the Wehrmacht then in the following month was in many cases involved in the killing of Jews civilians. Q. Dr Longerich, I am going to have hold you to the actual wording of that July 2nd telegram. I am going to suggest strongly that you using the word "all" to embrace all five lines is not justified? A. It is ---- Q. The German is (German spoken). That is the only use of the word "all," is it not? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Just look at it on the page. A. In the original the "all" is in the first line. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am sorry, I am interrupting because we must get on. Just look at it on the page. It is page 30. MR IRVING: Page? MR JUSTICE GRAY: It is quite impossible to say that "all" ---- MR IRVING: Page 30 of what, my Lord? MR JUSTICE GRAY: --- this new bundle, reproducing yet again most of the documents called N1, it is quite obvious that "all" qualifies everybody on the list, including Jews in state and party positions. That is beyond argument. Page 30, bottom of the page. . P-70 MR IRVING: If your Lordship wishes then we will move on. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think that so clear. MR IRVING: Can I just emphasise that the last line in that says: "Jews in party and state functions." It does not say "all Jews, including those in party and state functions", does it? A. I do not know whether I have to repeat this. Q. It just says: "All Jews in party and state functions"? A. I do not know whether I have to repeat this, but from the German original it is quite clear that the "all" relates to all the following categories. So it has to be read as "All Jews in party and state functions", that is quite clear. Q. That is what I am saying. You do not say that it says: "All Jews including those in party"? A. No, it says: "All Jews in party and state positions". Q. Which is very limited, is it not? A. Well, in a state which has a state-run economy the number is I think relatively, the number is relatively large. Q. So you are including everybody in the entire economy? A. If you have a manager of a firm which belongs to the State, he is a functionary of the state. Q. The reason I am saying this, Dr Longerich, is because in your opening sentence in paragraph 7 on page 7, you say, "This order", in other words, this document, "is certainly not to be interpreted as meaning that Heydrich . P-71 intended to limit the executions to those Jews who held party and state functions." Why not? That is precisely what it does say? A. No, I give you the explanation in the following sentence.
Site Map ·
What's New? ·
Home · Site Map · What's New? · Search Nizkor