Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day004.21 Last-Modified: 2000/08/01 Q. It was a long question. A. I have taken a very lengthy entry of some 20 lines. I have had to condense it into a paragraph of three or four or five lines for that particular passage and I think I have done an adequate job. If I was going to write a book two or three times as long endlessly boring, as the academics write them, then no doubt I could have put in the whole of that quotation undigested, unanalysed. I have had the difficult job that all authors face which is to condense something into a reasonable length while . P-189 not losing any of the essence. You can pick your individual sentences where a word is wrong and take that sentence out and the weight of the sentence remains the same. Hitler says: "I wanted to send them out." Hitler says: "I have been keeping a little book and one day it is going to come out." Hitler says: "I don't believe in looking for problems if we don't have problems. Look at the case of Galen, that is another one that I am going to put on the back burner." This is typical Hitler. Q. "That is what I did do with the Jews. I had to remain inactive for a long time too." A. Do not forget, Mr Rampton, we have a whole series of documents which lie in my direction and not in yours. Q. What is worst, Mr Irving, I suggest and then I am going to leave it, what is worst is that not only have you used a translation, not even your translation, a translation by somebody else which you knew to be wrong, but you have given a reference to the original which will make the reader suppose that this is first generation, mint new Irving translation? A. I do not think it says that in the footnotes at all. It is the historian's job to give the most accurate source reference he can give which will point the reader in the direction of the original document, rather than in some second or third ---- Q. This is a direct quotation of that passage? . P-190 A. If I were to act like your experts and just take books down off a shelf and use those as sources, this would be improper. I would far prefer to point people reading my books to where they can find the original documents so they can check it for themselves. Q. That is exactly what you have done in this case, is it not? You have actually used some rotten old translation by Trevor-Roper or somebody, you have repeated it again and again through your editions. You have the original in your ---- A. Indeed in discovery. Q. --- in your office all the time. You do not use it, but you tell the reader you have? A. No. I am satisfied that the translation I use is an accurate representation of the document I have, apart from that one sentence which has obviously been interpolated by the English interpreter which I find absolutely unconscionable to put a sentence into a translation that does not even exist. I know that the other historians are jealous that I have got all these documents and they did not, but they should not start poking fingers and sneering at me because I get these things. Q. I do not know. We will have this bit of the transcript relayed to, Professor Evans is here, but some of the others are not. A. I am looking forward to when they come. . P-191 MR JUSTICE GRAY: But not to Trevor-Roper because it was not his translation. It was not Trevor-Roper's translation. MR RAMPTON: Can we take that bit of the transcript out and put in the right ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think in fairness, yes. A. He was the editor actually. It is a very good translation. It is a very flowing translation. MR RAMPTON: Now I want to go back, if I may, because that is where all this started, to Hitler's War, page 465 in the 1991 edition. A. Yes. Is this where I say: "Upon arrival thousands were simply murdered"? Is this the passage you are referring to? Q. I am sorry, Mr Irving, I have just lost my place because I moved. I have found it. I am just going to ask you one quick question about the top of the page, referring back to the diary entry of 27th March 1942. You write in the middle of the first paragraph on 465: "But he evidently never discussed these realities with Hitler. Thus this two-faced Minister dictated after a further visit to Hitler on April 26th: I have once again talked over the Jewish question with the Fuhrer. His position on this problem is merciless. He wants to force the Jews right out of Europe. At the moment Himmler is handling the major transfer of Jews from the German cities into the Eastern gettoes". . P-192 Why is it evident that this two-faced Minister, the odious Dr Goebbels, never discussed these realities with Hitler? Is it the same point we discussed earlier? A. Is it what? Q. The same point as we discussed earlier? A. Which point is that? Q. Well, you said in the earlier part that we looked at: "That Goebbels privately knew more is plain from his diary entry of 27th"? A. No, the point I am making there is that had Goebbels discussed this kind of thing, what he privately knew, with Hitler, this two-faced Minister, then undoubtedly Hitler would not have been able to make the kind of remarks he did in private conversation with Himmler, Lamus and Bormann which are recorded in the table talks. Q. Why not? A. Then that would have evoked gusts of laughter from Himmler. Himmler would have said: "Mein Fuhrer, don't you realize what's going on?" Q. Sorry, I am not following that at all. A. Right. We have seen, and we can see until the Court screams for mercy, in the documents, in the table talks, how Hitler repeatedly makes statements which are only reconcilable with the notion that he was familiar with the expulsion, which cannot be brought into conformity with the notion that he knew what was happening when they got . P-193 there, the European Jews. Q. Suppose, as many people have proposed, I do not know with what persuasiveness, Mr Irving, in your mind, but suppose as they have proposed Hitler was as often as not simply euphemising? A. Why should he? He is sitting there at the table with the arch gangsters, with Himmler, Bormann and the rest who know perfectly well what is going on. Why should he euphemise to them when he is sitting with them? This is a secret record. It is never going to be published. They did not know about George Weidenfeld and Hugh Trevor-Roper. Q. Do you have a view of who was at which table talk when you read the table talks? A. Yes, usually there is a line above the table talks saying who is present as the guests of honour. Usually three or four people are listed. Verna Kopen did the same in his records of the table talks. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am a bit puzzled about this, because if you interpret the table talk as meaning that Hitler really was thinking only in terms of deportation, I know it has been a long day, but how do you reconcile that with your acceptance, because I understand you do accept it ---- A. Yes. Q. --- that he knew all about the shooting on a massive scale on the Eastern Front? . P-194 A. I think your Lordship has grasped the nub of the whole problem. Q. What is the answer? A. The answer is I think that he drew a distinction in his own mind between the Eastern vermin, the enemy, and the Germans and the Europeans whom he still regarded as being superior. Q. That is not clear from this passage in your book, is it? A. It will be clear from the other passages that he does draw this distinction, my Lord, and perhaps I ought to look some of these passages out and draw your Lordship's attention to them. But this is the only way you can explain this very evident dichotomy which does exist in the records, that on the one hand he is saying these things and on other hand he is evidently knowing other things. Also I think you have something which probably only psychiatrists can explain, that people can compartmentalize their knowledge of certain things. There is a kind of Richard Nixon kind of complex comes in saying: "Fellows, do it but don't let me be told". I am quite happy to believe that this kind of thing also went on. But in the absence of any evidence it would take a very adventurous writer to set it down, except in the most speculative terms. MR RAMPTON: Well, Mr Irving, I am going to have to ask you to look at some of these table talks, I think, because . P-195 contrary to what you say they are nowhere near as sanitized, I do not believe, as you say they are. We may also have to look at some of the Goebbels' diary entries. Would your Lordship wish me to start on that exercise now? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Shall we make a bit of a start. A. Would it be useful to start with the very last one, July 1942 where Hitler is still talking about Madagascar. MR RAMPTON: I am sorry, it would not be convenient to me. When you cross-examine you will find you have a particular order in your head or on your piece of paper. MR JUSTICE GRAY: You must follow your own course. A. I was trying to cut to the bottom line which is a way of speeding things on. MR RAMPTON: One might not agree that it is the bottom line. Can we start, please, I am taking these from Professor Evans's report because there is a collection in this part of the report which the court might find useful, first of all on page 413, this is the bit we looked at before, in paragraph 15, we read the earlier bit before about the donkeys in Rome or wherever it was, Hitler says: "Ich sage nur, er muss weg", "I am just saying he", that is the Jews, "have got to go. If he goes kaput in the course of it I can't help that. I only see one thing, absolute extermination if they don't go of their own accord." The German for "absolute extermination" in English is "absolute Ausrottung", that is at the bottom of . P-196 the page. A. Yes, literally routing out, "Ausrottung". Q. Yes, it is a word which may change its sense like so many words in so many languages according to its context. A. And who is speaking it and in what century and in what year. Q. I do not have to the Ausrottung argument every time we come across the word. A. We have not had it yet. Q. It is an argument that could go on until next Christmas. A. We the vernichtung argument but not the Ausrottung argument. MR JUSTICE GRAY: You have touched on it. Let us move on. MR RAMPTON: I am interested in the words "wenn er dabei kaputt". A. Yes. Q. What do you say those words mean? A. If he goes "caput". Q. And what does "going kaput" mean? A. The word "caput" is like "going for a Burton", it is one of those words which is a piece of vernacular, a piece of slang, all the wheels drop off. It is that kind of thing. If a car goes caput the wheels have dropped off. Q. If I achieve my object of achieving a complete Ausrottung, let us compromise, call is extirpation or annihilation, I do not know, of the Jew, it does not matter to me in the . P-197 slightest if that means death? A. I am sure it did not, not to Hitler, no. He did not really apply his mind very much to what happened once they had got out. Q. Then look at the next ---- A. You mean by merciless or pitiless?
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