Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day004.05 Last-Modified: 2000/08/01 Q. What I am suggesting to you, Mr Irving, is very simple. It is simply this. You cannot tell from looking at these two paragraphs which is Hitler and which is Goebbels? A. I think that is a very fair comment, yes. Q. Yes. So if (and we are dealing in probabilities, as I remind you, not certainties) as seems likely, the second of those two paragraphs is, as you have just told us, Goebbels' version of what Hitler said to the Gauleiters on 12th December, then so is it as likely that the first paragraph is in precisely the same case, is it not? . P-37 A. Mr Rampton, that is not what I said. I said it is Goebbels' version of Hitler's intentions, not what he said. Q. Where do you think that Goebbels derived his impression of Hitler's intention? A. Over a long period of sitting with him and talking with him over many weeks and months. Q. So this is nothing whatever to do with what Hitler is supposed to have said to the Gauleiters, is that your case? A. When you are writing a diary this is what happens. You put in information from what has just been told to you, but also your own external knowledge of what the person is thinking and saying. You cannot encapsulate individual phrases like that. If it was a shorthand record, it would be different. I prefer using shorthand records or even the table talk which is written in the first person form. Q. Well, I do not think I will push it any further, Mr Irving. We have your answer. I certainly do not accept it. I put it to you that it is perfectly clear that this is Goebbels' version of what Hitler said on 12th December 1941. A. I think it is possible that you and I and Dr Longerich have different criteria when we are evaluating documents. Q. Mr Irving, does it not read very naturally as a direct speech account of the Fuhrer's thoughts as expressed on . P-38 that occasion? A. Which sentence are you referring to? Q. Any one you like. A. Well, I mean, if I give you a general statement of opinion, then you are going to apply it to one particular sentence and say, "Here you have agreed that this sentence is Hitler's statement on that day" and that is ---- Q. Well, look at the second paragraph. Let us leave out the paragraph you do not like. A. Yes. Q. Let us look at the second paragraph at the top of page 499. A. Yes. Q. "In the East, the Fuhrer sees above all" -- you correct me where I go wrong -- "our approaching India". A. Yes. "This is colonial territory that we are going to settle". Q. Yes. "This is colonial territory that we shall settle. Here great ---- A. "Farmsteads". Q. "Homesteads" -- what? A. Yes, "he already established great farmsteads for our peasant sons and the" ---- Q. Yes, and what are the "Kapitulanten"? A. I do not know what that word means, I must confess. Q. No. "unserer Wehrmacht gesch werden"? . P-39 A. "Created". Q. "Created", exactly. It is all part of the same thought process, is it not? A. It may be but it may not be. Nowhere does he say, "This afternoon the Fuhrer said". This is just Goebbels writing down, waffling about what Hitler's views on the future are, and it is not ---- Q. I am sorry. Finish your answer. I do not mean to interrupt. A. But may I also state and remind the court once more that was material which was not in front of me at the time I wrote the book, so I cannot really see, with respect, I would rise if I was now sitting and say, "What is the relevance of this material?" Q. It may in the end turn out to be a small point, but, you see, Mr Irving, you are in the habit, are you not -- I drew something to your attention on Thursday -- of asserting certainties where all that a cautious and responsible historian would do would be to say "It looks like it"? A. I agree, this is absolutely right and in this particular case a responsible historian would say, "On this occasion Goebbels reported and it may well be that Hitler had told him on this occasion". Q. But you told on Thursday that it was quite certain that this could not be Hitler, it must be Goebbels in the . P-40 contentious paragraph because the tense changes from the past in the first sentence to direct speech in the second, well, from the ---- A. To be more specific, the part that Longerich alleged was Hitler being quoted was not in the subjunctive tense. It was not in the subjunctive. MR JUSTICE GRAY: We went through that in considerable detail on Thursday. A. Yes, and also we are not referring to this paragraph, we are referring to one specific sentence. MR RAMPTON: Now I want to go back, please, and you will see how it is going to develop as we go along. I give you notice of what I am now going to do. A. If I may just say, what alarms me is the fact that you had from my discovery the documents showing precisely how much of this diary was at my disposable when I wrote the book. MR JUSTICE GRAY: We are moving on now, Mr Irving. I take your point. A. I appreciate that, but I think it is dishonest for them to have advanced this kind of argument. Q. That is a comment you can make at the end of the case but let us get on now with the questions and answers. MR RAMPTON: You will have that opportunity. What I am going to do is I am going to start with your Kovno train which we dealt with on Thursday of 17th November 1941, and then I am going to use that as a way of opening the door to . P-41 what I call system. Do you understand? A. Right. Q. Can we, first of all, start with your Kovno train. Have you that little bundle? A. I do not, but I am quite familiar with the documents. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Can you take me to it, Kovno train? I am sorry, the significance of that is completely missing to me. A. The train from Bremen to Kovno. MR RAMPTON: Could your Lordship first turn up page 13 of the transcript for Thursday and the other documents, the little Irving documents I call them, are at tab 3 of file J, my Lord, or should be. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. MR RAMPTON: I would quite like Mr Irving to have both what he said in court and the Cogno signal. A. It is the intercept - correct? Q. Has anybody got a spare transcript? Page 5 is the translation, or the transcription, I know not which and it does not matter. Just have that open. Is it possible for him to have a transcript for Thursday? A. I think I have the wrong bundle. Are we talking about Cogno? MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is what is going to happen when you have all these little files knocking around. We must put them all in the same place. I have them in J and I hoped . P-42 everybody else was going to put it in J, tab 3. A. I have J 1. MR JUSTICE GRAY: To save time, could somebody pass up the bundle which has the index on the front of it? It is called bundle C, Himmler. A. This is bundle J 1 again. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I do not think that is the right bundle. You are talking about the clip that Mr Irving handed in? MR RAMPTON: Yes, I am. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Probably on Wednesday. MR RAMPTON: Yes. MR JUSTICE GRAY: He has called it Claimant bundle C Himmler. I had hoped everyone was putting it in J but, wherever it is, can somebody hand it up because every minute that goes by is a waste of time. A. I am very familiar with the document, if you wish to proceed. MR RAMPTON: I think we can get most of it anyway, Mr Irving, from what you said in the witness box. We will not spend any more time. A. I read most of the document out, I believe. Q. Yes. Can I read from line 4 on page 13 of the transcript? "In this particular case what is significant is that the man in Berlin is telling his recipient in Riga on November 17th", in other words that same day at 6.25 p.m., "transport train number blah has left Berlin for . P-43 Cogno or Kaunat" -- in fact it is K A U N A S, is it not, and sometimes Mr Irving, pausing there, sometimes in German K A U E N? A. That is the problem. A lot of these towns have three or four different names. Q. But it is all the same place, is it not? A. Yes, Cogno and Kauen. Q. Cogno is an old fortified, or fortress in the Latvian country side, or is it Lithuania? It matters not perhaps very much. "With 940 or more Jews on board, or 940 more". In fact it was 944, was it not? MR JUSTICE GRAY: It obviously was. I think that is probably just a mistranscription. Understandable. MR RAMPTON: I think so too. "That was usually the rough size of each train load of Jews, about 1,000 Jews. Transport escorted by two Gestapo and 15 police officers. Transport commander is criminal Ober SS Exner (?), and the man's name, who has two copies of the transport list with him. Transport provided with ...". We have not got the German of this. What is the German that you translate "as provided with"? A. I would not like to hazard a guess. Q. All right. "With following provisions"? A. Vorversehen (?) Q. Provided? A. Yes, literally. . P-44 Q. For seeing, as it were? A. We must not mention the word Latin. Q. "Provided with following provisions", and this is the interesting part, my Lord: "3,000 kilograms of bread, 3 tons of bread for a two or three day journey, 2700 (it should read) kilograms of flour, nearly 3 tons of flour, 200 kilograms of peas, etc. 300 kilograms of cornflakes, 18 bottles of soup spices", -- then continuing in the next message, 52 kilograms of soup powders, ten packets of something or other, we do not know, 50 kilograms of salt, 47,200 reichmarks in crates. What do you suppose those were for? A. It was credits, credits. Q. Yes, for whom? A. I am sorry. MR JUSTICE GRAY: What is the point of having them on the train? That is really the question. A. I imagine it was the same with bomber crews. When they flew to Germany, they carried money with them. One always needed money. You cannot send a train load of people around Europe without money to pay for things. Q. This money was for the 944 Jews, was it? A. I do not think I applied that it was. Q. I am asking you. A. No, presumably not. Presumably it was to cover transport costs. . P-45 Q. All right. Signed Gestapo Headquarters, Berlin, and then this is Mr Irving speaking: "It is quite an interesting document, my Lord. It is the first kind of thing we come across in my view to show that these trains were actually well provisioned. It is a bit of a dent, a tiny dent, in the image we have, the perception as Mr Rampton calls it, of the Holocaust today." Why do you say that? A. The image that we have from the literature is of coal trucks and cattle trucks being filled. I am not saying that this did not happen, but I am saying that the image we have is that all that happened was that these wretched victims were stuffed into trains, with no food and water for three or four days, and shipped across Europe to their deaths, when this and the subsequent telegram which we British intercepted, which I quote, indicates that very substantial quantities of food were put on board these trains for the short journey, and that, in the next telegram, you will remember, it also added the fact that they were carrying their appliances with them, food and appliances. So obviously people were sending them, at least the system that was sending them apprehended that they were going to be doing something at the other end when they got there. Q. What was German word for the appliances? A. Gerat. Q. And plural gerater? . P-46 A. No. You would use it in the singular form.
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