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Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day018.11

Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day018.11
Last-Modified: 2000/07/24

.          P-91

   Q.   Is this in any sense improper, do you think?
   A.   I do not use the word "improper".
   Q.   Is it not a fact that by using this non-
        method of interviewing people you sometimes wheedle
        out of them over the years than if one was to go there
        with all the methods of a Fleet Street journalist,
        cheating them the moment they had given the
        and ridiculing them?  That my method in the long term
        resulted in a much greater benefit for the historical
        community because I extracted the information, the
        from them, is that not a fact, by using my methods?
   A.   Well, I do not know accept your rather harsh verdict
        Fleet Street journalists and you would have to show me
        some examples of what they had done but ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Do not let us worry about that.
   A.   But, that aside ----
   MR IRVING:  The Swabians say zote und zote(?).
   A.   --- do not dispute, Mr Irving, that you have obtained
        lot of information which other people have not
   MR IRVING:  Are you familiar with the collections of
        that I donated to the West German government and also
        the Institute of History in Munich?
   A.   I know that you have donated collections of documents,
        yes, and I am familiar with some parts of them.
   Q.   And that historian around the world have frequently
        use of these collections of documents?

.          P-92

   A.   They have been used by other historians, indeed, yes.
   Q.   Would you agree that many of these documents are of
   A.   They are of a variable value, but some are valuable,
   Q.   The curate's egg, we used to say?
   A.   Yes, it is a mixed bag -- as any collection of
   Q.   Yes.  There are some very high grade private diaries
        Hitler's private staff which nobody else has ever seen
   A.   Yes, and which you have published.  I am not disputing
        of this.
   Q.   In other words, people take with the one hand what
        like about me, but with the other hand they are quite
        happy to ridicule me and smear me in public as a
        and Anti-Semite because they do not like the way I
        my books?
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  That is not really a question.
   MR IRVING:  Have you read the review that Professor Martin
        Broszat wrote of my book "Hitler's War" in the
        Journal of the Institute of Contemporary History?
   A.   Yes, I am familiar with it.
   Q.   It is a pretty corrosive review in parts, is it not?
   A.   Indeed.
   Q.   Are you familiar that there were personal reasons why
        Professor Martin Broszat would want to write
        about something I had written?

.          P-93

   A.   I think that, well, not personally, but you claim that
        there are.  I am familiar with your allegation that
   Q.   If he married a lady ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Mr Irving, before we go on, I do not know
        what you are getting at.
   MR IRVING:  I am going to keep it very low profile, my
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  What possible relevance has the malice of
        somebody who has reviewed one of your books got to the
        present case?
   MR IRVING:  Because the review written by Professor Martin
        Broszat is very heavily relied on by all the expert
        witnesses as evidence of my perversity and, for
        that is the origin of the Hitler's Table Talk
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I can see the experts might share
        Broszat's view of your historiography, but it is the
        expert's own opinion that accounts.
   MR IRVING:  You know how one little shout brings down the
   A.   May I make two points there?  One is that I have
        reinvestigated, as it were, reresearched, all the
        made by Professor Broszat so that I am not reliant on
        he says.  The second point is I can direct you to my
        answer to your 11th question in the first set that you
        sent on 30th December.
   Q.   I have not read it.

.          P-94

   A.   "If Broszat had personal motives for criticising
        work, these may help explain why he did so, but they
        not of themselves invalidate the criticisms which have
        be dealt with on their own terms".
   Q.   Are you aware of the fact that Professor Broszat
        to allow me any space to reply in that learned
   A.   I will take your word for it that that was the case,
        though is it normal in that particular journal that --
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Whether it is or it is not, I do not
think we
        are going to stay long with Professor Broszat.
   MR IRVING:  Very well.  Are you familiar with a document
        as the Leuchter report, or have you heard of it?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Have you read it in any detail or are you familiar
        with  ----
   A.   I have looked through it, yes.  I am not an expert on
        Auschwitz, Mr Irving, but I have looked through it,
   Q.   Are you familiar with the fact that other documents
        superceded the Leuchter report, both written by
        revisionists and by anti-revisionists, if I can put it
        like that?  There were subsequent investigations.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Have you heard of the Rudolf report?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   The report by Germar Rudolf.
   A.   I have heard of that, yes.

.          P-95

   Q.   Did you refer to the Germar Rudolf report in any of
        expert paragraphs?
   A.   To be honest, I am not quite sure.  Certainly not in
        detail.  My report is not about Auschwitz.
   Q.   If I could be fairly criticised for having relied
        on the Leuchter report, does it not take the sting out
        a lot of that criticism, in your view, that subsequent
        reports which were also available to me did the
        job but better, if I can put it like that?
   A.   I really cannot comment on that, Mr Irving.  I thought
        this had been gone through in Professor van Pelt's
        and in your cross-examination of him.  My concern is
        with Auschwitz.  I am not an expert on these matters.
   Q.   The tactical reason I have for putting this to you is
        my friends tell me that I have not hammered this into
        Lordship's consciousness enough?
   A.   Well, to leave me out of it in that case if you are --
        you are doing the hammering, I will get out of the way
        that particular one.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Forgive me.  What has not penetrated my -
   MR IRVING:  I am sure it has now, my Lord, because it is
now in
        the transcript, purely that the Leuchter report was
        superseded by other reports on which I also relied in
        continuing to make the statements that I did.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I knew you relied on later reports, yes.
        That I had understood.

.          P-96

   MR IRVING:  There is no harm in repetition, is there?
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Within reason, no.  Anyway, I just wanted
        make sure I knew what you thought I had not
   MR IRVING:  What do you think of Mr Kershaw as an historian
        Adolf Hitler, Ian Kershaw, Professor Kershaw?
   A.   I think he is a good historian.
   Q.   A good historian?  If I tell you that he declined to
        testify for us in my case here because his knowledge
        German was totally insufficient, would that change
        opinion of the books he writes about the leader of the
   A.   You would have to provide me with a copy of the
        in which he says that before I could accept that that
        what he said.
   Q.   You quote Robert Harris in the book "Selling Hitler"
        paragraph 2.4.8 of your report?
   A.   Give me the page number, please.
   MR IRVING:  I do not have the page number in front of me.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  We had it just a moment ago, did we not?
        it 700 or 600 and something?
   A.   Much earlier, I think, my Lord.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  We can find it on the transcript.
   MR IRVING:  We have time, my Lord, because I have come to
        end of my prepared questions on this topic and it may
        your Lordship will not want me to ask questions about
        bundle E which is what I was proposing to do

.          P-97

   MS ROGERS:  212.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  212.  Yes.  I remember 212.  Ask this and
        then we will consider bundle E.
   MR IRVING:  Paragraph 248.  You quote Robert Harris in
        Hitler", "when the forensic tests shortly afterwards
        revealed the Hitler diaries definitively as fakes,
        issued a statement accepting the finding but drawing
        attention to the fact that he had been the first
person to
        unmask them as forged".  Do you remember that passage?
   A.   Yes.  It is not the one we have here.
   Q.   2.4.8?
   A.   It is much earlier on, I think.
   MS ROGERS:  39.
   A.   Yes.
   MR IRVING:  "Irving issued a statement accepting the
        finding but drawing attention to the fact that he had
        the first person to unmask them as forged.  'Yes',
said a
        reporter from The Times" I am quoting from your
         "when this was read out to him, 'and the last person
        declare them authentic'."  Do you remember that
   A.   Yes, I have got that, yes.
   Q.   Would it not have been more accurate to write that
        was Robert Harris quoting me as saying that rather
than me
        saying that?
   A.   Well, it is footnoted, Mr Irving.  Footnote 26 refers
         "Harris, Selling Hitler, page 359".  So it is

.          P-98

        clear that it is Harris.
   Q.   But it is reported speech?
   A.   Indeed, it is in Harris's book.  It is quite clear in
        book that it is in Harris's book.
   Q.   Yes.  Reverting to standards on anti-Semitism, what do
        know about the statements made by leading politicians
        the Jews during the war?  Were they anti-Semitic in
        degree, people like Winston Churchill or Anthony Eadon
        Lord Halifax?  Are you familiar with any of the things
        that they said?
   A.   I am not, no.
   Q.   No.  I just want to put to you a little clip of
        that I made from some of their private diaries, and I
        not propose to read these out.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Can you just help me ----
   MR IRVING:  It is headed: "Anti-Semitism in the diaries".
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  --- as to their relevance?
   MR IRVING:  The relevance?  It is arguable, my Lord.  I was
        going to say on a scale of 1 to 10 is Lord Halifax
        anti-Semitic if these ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  No, but what if he is?  I mean, help me
   MR IRVING:  Then the question I was going to say is on the
        scale of what you know from my private diaries, what
        number do I reach?  1, 0.5?
   MR RAMPTON:  I mean, the fact that these well-known people

.          P-99

        as I can plainly see, having looked at some of this
        guilty of the same kind of blatant anti-Semitism as
        Mr Irving takes us nowhere.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  It is a "so what?" point really?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes, it is a "so what?" point with a big
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  That must be right, must it not, Mr
        I mean, the charge is made against you of anti-
        That may or may not be justified.  It may be partly
        justified, I do not know.  That is something I have
got to
   MR IRVING:  But if I was told that I was only one-tenth as
        anti-Semetic as somebody as respectable as Anthony
        for example, or as Lord Halifax, then I would be able
        sleep more peacefully at night, than when I read in
        newspapers that I am the bogey man in the nursery.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Well, I am afraid I take the view that we
        have to decide what anti-Semitism consists of, first
        all, and then I have got to look and see what you have
        said and written and decide whether that constitutes
        anti-Semitism or is evidence of anti-Semitism.
   MR IRVING:  I tried to get an explanation from the witness
        as  ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I am not helped by knowing what -- I
        times have changed, apart from anything else.
   MR IRVING:  I wholeheartedly agree, my Lord.  Times have

.          P-100

        definitely changed in this respect and they have changed
        for the better.

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