Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day006.05 Last-Modified: 2000/08/02 MR RAMPTON: Yes, please. "'Upon his renewed request, I have now transferred to him additional personnel. Globocnik took this opportunity to explain to me his idea that the . P-37 action against the Jews", that is pretty explicit, is it not, Mr Irving? A. Well, of course, at this time they are busy cleaning all the Jews out of the General Government which is the actioning of the Jews. Q. What would Dr Brack have to do with that? A. I do not know. Q. No, quite. "'... should be carried out with all deliberate speed, in order to avoid getting stuck [in the middle]'"-- That is in square brackets; I know not why -- "'one of these days when some sort of difficulty may force us to stop. You, yourself, Reichsfuhrer'", that is Himmler, "'once voiced to me your opinion that the requirements of secrecy also oblige us to act as quickly as possible. Both conceptions are thus directed in principle towards the same result, and according to my experience, they are more than justified'". Again looking at that, as a matter of probability, is Brack not saying two things? Brack, remember, Mr Irving, is master of the gassing apparatus. A. Yes. Q. "You do not need secrecy to exterminate lice; you do need secrecy to cloak the killing of people"? A. I quite agree. That is undoubtedly, on the balance of probabilities, the overall burden of this document. Q. Thank you very much. . P-38 A. However, if I may now make my own comments on it? Q. Please do. A. At no point is it being said (as it could so easily have been said) "This operation which the Fuhrer has commanded should be done" or anything like that. It is purely about "Your opinion, Mr Himmler. You suggested this. We are doing that". This is still failing to establish the bridge between the upper link of the system, which so far is Mr Himmler, and Adolf Hitler himself, which is what I have always maintained. Q. No, Mr Irving, you see, that is only part of what you have maintained. What you have consistently maintained, so far as I am aware, until perhaps we got some concession in this court yesterday, what you have also maintained is Jews were not killed by the use of homicidal gas? A. Oh, I disagree. I have repeatedly allowed that they were killed in gas vans. Q. On a limited scale. Yes, sorry. I will read you something. You will probably recognize it. I have not got a date for it, I am afraid. 1992, what does it come from? What is the IHR called in 1992? The institute of Historical Review? It is something you wrote about the Goebbels' diary. A. Probably about the Eichmann papers. Q. It is about the Eichmann papers, that is right. You are talking about Eichmann. . P-39 A. Because Eichmann in his papers describes himself having sat inside the front of a bus or a truck which is being driven around with people being gassed in the back. Q. My Lord, for reference -- not to get it out -- the reference is file D3(i), tab 30. You say of Eichmann: "I do not know why he recounted that kind of detail in his memoirs. It is an ugly piece of circumstantial evidence". I do not know what it was. It was something about shooting children or something at Minsk. "It is an ugly piece of circumstantial evidence, but it lends credibility and authenticity to the descriptions, what a writer calls verisimilitude. It did no surprise me. He also describes, and I have to say this being an honest historian, going to another location a few weeks later and being driven around in a bus, then being told by the bus driver to look through a peep hole into the back of the bus where he saw a number of prisoners being gassed by the exhaust fumes". Then, Mr Irving, this: "So I accept that this kind of experiment was made on a very limited scale"? A. Yes. We are talking about, even in your own paper, eight or nine trucks, I believe, which is a very limited scale. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Rampton, it would help me if one could see quite where we have got now. You have, I will not use the word "concession" because I can understand why Mr Irving does not like it put that way, but in relation to gas vans, one has that being carried out on a limited . P-40 experimental basis with the authority of Himmler but without the knowledge of Hitler, am I right? A. That is precisely how far we have got. MR RAMPTON: That does not take the matter very far, with respect. A. And myself having said so in public on various occasions. MR JUSTICE GRAY: That is what we spent this morning on so far. MR RAMPTON: That represents, as it often has in this case and, no doubt, often will, a giant step back from what I think was conceded yesterday which is that all those people who went to those three little villages in Eastern Poland actually were actually going to be killed, most of them. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Not by gassing. MR RAMPTON: Not by gassing. Therefore, I must press on. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes, but we are not on Treblinka or the others at the moment, are we? MR RAMPTON: Well, Operation Reinhard is Treblinka, Sobibor and Belzec. That is what Globocnik was in charge of. The point about it is this. There is again this systematic chain of events. Brack is, first of all, summoned, as it were, to Riga which is in the Ostland. I do not really want to have make a speech. This is not a ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: No, I am trying not to get too bogged down when at the end one gets the concession that, perhaps, would have enabled one to take the individual documents more rapidly. . P-41 MR RAMPTON: I think it is very difficult. One sees what happens if I take an individual document. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. Well, that is part of the problem. MR RAMPTON: The trouble is this. If at the end of the case I say to your Lordship, "Your Lordship has read all the documents" or "I draw them to your Lordship's attention", and then I simply say, "Well, the inference to be drawn from this is perfectly obvious", Mr Irving could legitimately say, "Well, I was never given a chance to deal with that in cross-examination". MR JUSTICE GRAY: We may have to tackle that as a problem in this case, whether everything has to be put. MR RAMPTON: Your Lordship will see, when I get to the remaining part of Professor Evans, that there is a great deal that I will not even refer to and a great deal that I will take very shortly, but with this I cannot because your Lordship does have to see the scale and the system. MR JUSTICE GRAY: But can we just focus on what it is that there is an issue about and see whether Mr Irving agrees. MR RAMPTON: Your Lordship had better ask Mr Irving. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I think I am. The issue appears to be whether at Belzec Sobibor and Treblinka there was any gassing at all by the use of gas vans or gas chambers. Is that something you dispute? A. My answer will be initially disappointing to say that frankly I am not an expert on that and I do not know. The . P-42 court is probably dissatisfied with that answer. I have made such cursory investigations as I could in preparation for this case, which I should not really have had to do, and establish that there is a great deal of uncertainty, buildings which the evidence or eyewitnesses suggest should have been at Treblinka and Mydonek cannot be seen on the aerial photographs. We have that kind of problem. That is why I am happy not to have had to engage myself in any greater depth with those matters. Q. I think we are not concerned with Mydonek. It is Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka. You do challenge the fact that there was gassings of Jews in gas chambers or by the use of gas vans. A. There are serious problems, my Lord. Mr Rampton has been rather vague about how the gassings were conducted in Treblinka, what kind of means were used, what kind of gas, was it diesel engines or petrol engines, and there is a great deal of dispute about that among other people than myself. Go ahead, Mr Rampton. MR RAMPTON: I should not interrupt. You are in discourse with the judge and I should have kept quiet. A. Do you wish to ask something? Q. No. I will not bother with it. A. I am sorry, if I may just say so, that is why I would have preferred if one was to hinge this case on Auschwitz rather than what I might call the lesser camps, where . P-43 there is a great deal of uncertainty, whereas Auschwitz is really the battleship, the capital ship of this entire case. Q. You might say that, Mr Irving, but you have entered the arena. Nobody asked you to comment on the Holocaust. Nobody asked you to sink the battleship Auschwitz. Nobody asked you to say with that there were a very limited number of experimental gassings in trucks. You said all that voluntarily? A. Did I say very limited? Q. I am about to. My job is about undermining your position by reference to what you should have looked at, if you have not already, by the time you made those statements? A. The reason I made that statement in 1992 which you just quoted is that only a few weeks earlier I had come into possession of Adolf Eichmann's private papers and I had discovered in those papers a description by him of how he had personally attended a gassing in a gas truck, and he had been required by Muller, the chief of Gestapo, to witness this to see how it was going on. This of course is evidence of high quality. It is evidence that in no way can be said to be in one own's self interest. That is why I told this audience in California that there was no question whatsoever that these gassings in trucks or buses had gone on. To be accused now of having denied this kind of thing is the ultimate absurdity, when the evidence is . P-44 front of the defence and I never denied it. Q. I am going to suggest, Mr Irving, that you have made statements even about the use of gas trucks which fly in the face of the available evidence, and I am going to do it by reference to some Nuremburg documents which must have been available since goodness knows when. A. To say that something must have been able available to me of course, is ---- Q. I am suggesting, Mr Irving, that a man in your position does not enter the arena waving flags and blowing trumpets unless he has taken the trouble to verify in advance what it is that he is proposing to say, particularly when what he is proposing to say is something of great sensitivity and importance to millions of people throughout the world. A. Mr Rampton, the sensitivity is neither here not there in a case like this, where historians cannot regard the sensitivities of people when you write history. Nor I do enter arenas blowing trumpets and waving flags. I am not a Holocaust historian, Mr Rampton. I am a Hitler historian. I am a biographer of the top Nazis. Q. Why do you not keep your mouth shut about the Holocaust? A. Because I am asked about it. It apparently obsesses people. Q. You gave a press conference to announce the triumphant arrival on these shores of the Liechter report? . P-45 A. Yes. Q. This is your glossy version of the Liechter report, is it not? A. I am a publishing company and we published that under our imprint, yes. Q. Why? A. Because it is an important contribution to the debate. Q. This? A. Yes. Q. Well, we will come to that next week. A. Oh dear. Q. Is this the only stimulus you have had for charging into the arena of Holocaust denial? A. Well, I find those words, of course, repugnant. Q. They are meant to be tendentious. I put it that way so that you can deal with it, because that is what I shall say at the end of the case. A. As is well known to the court, when I read the results of the chemical test on the buildings which will play quite a substantial part in this debate, I changed my mind. Q. Here is something, Mr Irving, you said at the Liechter press conference on 23rd June 1989. My Lord, the reference is D2 (i), Tab 5, pages 30 and 32. A. Is it the conference where we presented this report to the press?
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