Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day023.08 Last-Modified: 2000/07/24 Q. Well, just a simple answer will ---- A. No, I cannot give a simple answer because it is a loaded question. That is the problem with your questions, Mr Irving. I have already been through this document and I have noted that when Hitler states that Germans emigrated, which is the meaning of the word "auswanderer", from Germany in the 19th century, in his view 75 per cent of them died. It is a deadly process. We have no evidence for that. It is a completely absurd idea, they did not, but that is his view of emigration. There is a clear connection there. Q. Yes, but do you ---- . 69 A. And then he goes on to talk about the way in which he thought that Jews drove Germans to emigrate in a way that describes exactly the way, in fact, that the Germans drove the Jews to emigrate. Q. This is purely and etymological exercise, Professor. How would you translate then "Jewish emigration" in the emigrating sense, not the killing sense? A. Yes, I mean, you enter reservations about the point of indulging in purely etymological exercises ---- Q. Can you just answer the question? Would it be "Juden Auswanderung"? A. --- given the misuse that you make of them. But, of course, it means "emigration". I have said that repeatedly. That is the literal meaning of the word "Auswanderung". Q. What German word would you use for "Jewish emigration"? "Juden Auswanderung"? A. Something like that, yes, "Judische Auswanderung", whatever. Q. Is that not precisely the word used in the September 1942 document that we are going to be looking at later? A. Well, let us have a look at it. Q. Can we tackle things in sequence, Professor ---- A. Well, you are the one who introduced the September document, Mr Irving, I did not. Q. --- otherwise we are not going to complete today. We will . 70 come to that document in sequence and in the order that I dictate and not the order that you dictate. A. You have just said you want to discuss it now, Mr Irving. Q. I am discussing it now. A. Now you are accusing me of bringing it up out of sequence. This is ridiculous. MR JUSTICE GRAY: This is all degenerating. Q. I am discussing it now ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: Professor Evans, do not be provoked and, Mr Irving, can we try to get on? MR IRVING: Yes. A. It is very hard, my Lord. MR IRVING: My Lord, the reason I did it here is because in this one footnote the word "Auswanderer" is used five or six times in the clearly emigrating sense. MR JUSTICE GRAY: We have been over this many times. "Auswanderung" can be used euphemistically, but it is not always used euphemistically. MR IRVING: It is a rubber word. MR JUSTICE GRAY: But can I ask just about a general question which I think can be answered quite briefly? The table talk on page 407 of your report and the Goebbels diary entry on page 408 talk in terms of getting the Jews out of Europe? A. Yes. Q. Do you regard either of those documents because that is . 71 what they are, as being on their face sinister? A. Yes, I do, my Lord. I mean, I think by this time -- -- Q. Because it is euphemistic or for some other reason? A. It is euphemistic and particularly in the table talk in May 1942 this linkage of mass death with emigration, not to mention the statements about beating racial pests to death. I mean, they are wrapped up -- he is, of course, trying to be euphemistic and then spins these ridiculous fantasies about the climatic, supposed climatic, resilience of Jews and so on. But they are both rather sinister, particularly when you take into account what was happening in the extermination camps at this time. MR IRVING: With respect, I suggest the word "sinister" is wrong. "Homicidal" is probably what his Lordship meant. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I was using a euphemism as well, if you like, but I thought everybody understood what the term meant. A. Yes, I certainly did. MR IRVING: But would you not expect precisely this kind of conversation to happen around the dinner table if somebody said, "Adolf, we are getting word from the BBC and from Voice of America, whatever it is, that killings are happening and that the Jews are dying like flies in the East", whereupon Hitler says, "So what! Look at the way our people suffered"? Is it not exactly that kind of conversation that you are looking at here? It is a "so what" conversation, is it not? . 72 A. I am not sure I follow the argument there. Q. Is it not Adolf Hitler being tough, talking tough to his dinner table people saying, "Show these people no mercy. Look at how our people suffered when the boot was on the other foot"? A. He certainly is saying that, yes. Q. So, in other words, although it is tough talk, it is not necessarily Adolf Hitler saying, "Yes, we are killing them too like flies"? A. That does not follow at all, Mr Irving. Q. Yes, thank you very much. A. When I say "it does not follow at all", I mean your conclusion does not follow at all. Let us get that quite clear what I mean by that. I think you might have misunderstood it. I do not think that because he is talking tough, it is just tough talk, that there is a reality behind it with which he is quite aware. Q. Yes, but there is no evidence for that in these lines. I do not want to start nit-picking, but it is just tough talk that is recorded at this dinner table conversation? A. Well, this is the leader of ---- Q. Ugly talk? MR JUSTICE GRAY: We can go through it, Mr Irving, if you want to, but I have the witness's answer and I know you do not agree with it, but I have the witness's answer. A. The question is that Goebbels, of course, was quite aware . 73 that resettlement meant that the Jews were being killed -- 60 per cent of them were being killed, he says in his diary -- and so why would he have described Hitler's views as being radical and unrelenting if that had only meant emigration? The fact that he knew it involved killing must, surely, have meant that Hitler's views were in favour of yet more killing. MR IRVING: On page 410 of your report -- we are slowly chewing our way forward -- line 3, you say there is a large number of instances where Hitler spoke openly about exterminating ---- A. In my letter of 10th January -- I am sorry to interrupt ---- Q. You have withdrawn that, have you? A. --- I have withdrawn the word "openly", yes. That was rather careless. Q. Very well. A. It is open to misinterpretation. Q. Three lines from the bottom of that same page, you quote the Goebbels diary: "It would end with the annihilation of the Jews". Once again we have that old, familiar, rubber word "vernichtung", do we not? A. Yes, I think "annihilation" is an exact etymological translation of that. I tried to be careful to render it in that terms. "Nicht" means "nothing", so "vernichtung" means "making nothing of" or "annihilation", in other . 74 words. Q. On page 412 of your expert report we have all those old words again. On line two you have the destruction of the Jewish element, which again is the "Vernichtung" is it not? That is in the Mufti conversation. A. Yes. That should mean annihilation then. Q. You did not give us the German text of that, did you? A. No, I did not. Q. But you will find that I provided you with the German text now? MR JUSTICE GRAY: To save time, are you prepared to accept that is "vernichtung". MR IRVING: At page 33. A. Let us have a look at the German text, my Lord. This is very easy. MR IRVING: Page 33 of my bundle. I went to the original microfilm last night and transcribed the passage in German, so it is "vernichtung" there again? A. Yes, that is "vernichtung". I am quite happy to render that as annihilation. Q. On December 12th, the indented passage two lines down, they would experience their own annihilation. We have "vernichtung" again. A. Indeed, yes. Q. By way of variety, three lines from the bottom, "the extirpation of Jewry", that is now "Ausrottung"? . 75 A. Yes. Q. We have the whole kaleidoscope of words being used there by the Nazis? A. By Hitler, not by the Nazis. Q. Over the page, page 413, line 4 of the indented passage, we have once again January 25th 1942. That is just five days after the Wannsee conference, is it not? A. Yes. Q. All Hitler is saying is the Jews have to get out of Europe. Four lines lower down, "I am just saying, he has to go". It does not really very homicidal to me. MR RAMPTON: Well, read on. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Yes. A. Let me read out the whole passage. MR IRVING: Then comes the tough talk. A. Of course. When it gets tough, it is just talk. When it is not tough, then it is real. That is your view. Q. He is not saying we are setting about- he said if they die on the way ---? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Let the witness read it. Please do not let us have this batting backwards and forwards. A. Hitler says in this table talk 25th January: "If I take the Jews out today, then our bourgeoisie becomes unhappy: what is happening then with them? But have the same people troubled themselves about what would become of the Germans who had to emigrate? One must do it quickly, it . 76 is no better if I have one tooth pulled out by a few centimetres" -- he does say centimetres but I think he means millimetres -- "every three months, when it is out, the pain has gone. The Jew has to get out of Europe. Otherwise we get no European understanding. He incites the people the most, everywhere. In the end: I do not know, I am colossally humane. The Jews", carries on Hitler "were maltreated at the time of the Pope's rule in Rome. Up to 1830 eight Jews were driven through the city every year with donkeys. I am just saying, he has to go". That is, the Jew has to go. "If he collapses in the course of it, I can't help there. I only see one thing: absolute extermination, if they don't go of their own accord. Why should I look at a Jew with other eyes than at a Russian prisoner of war? Many are dying in the prison camps because we have been driven into this situation by the Jews. But what can I do about that? Why then did the Jews instigate the war?" So he is threatening absolute extermination if the Jews do not go of their own accord, and he is talking about the Russian prisoners of war, many of them dying in the same context as he is talking about Jews. The murderous character of that conversation could hardly be clearer. MR IRVING: What is the phrase for "absolute Ausrottung"? You are quite incorrigible. What is the German he uses? A. You just said. . 77 Q. "Absolute Ausrottung"? A. Yes. Q. You translated that as "absolute extermination"? A. Yes. Q. Quite clearly it is absolute rooting up, is it not? Have you never had to uproot? MR JUSTICE GRAY: Again, we have had that point. I am well aware of the argument. Q. It is these tendentious translations on which he relies. A. I do not think it is a tendentious translation. "Ausrottung" means extirpation, uprooting, rooting out or total -- if you look up "extirpation" in the Oxford English dictionary, you will to try and it will mean---- Q. And you translate it every time ---- A. Let me finish, Mr Irving. If you look up "extirpation" in the Oxford English Dictionary, which you obviously have not done, then you will to try and the translations include "total destruction". If you look it up in the Cassell's 1936 English German dictionary, you will to try and "Ausrottungskrieg" is translated as a "war of extermination". It is a perfectly legitimate translation. There is nothing tendentious about it. In connection here with all the things he is saying about killing Russian prisoners of war, deaths in the prison camp, and so on, it is quite clear what it means. Q. He says they are dying, he does not say they are being . 78 killed, does he? He says they are dying in the prison camps. A. Yes, that is right. Q. You are calling this extermination. You take the third or fourth meaning of the word. A. I think it is a reasonable conclusion to draw, that the Russian prisoners of war, of whom 3 or 4 million died in the prisoner of war camps in the Second World War, are being exterminated by the Nazis. Why they are dying in the prison camps? Hitler knows perfectly well, because they are not being given food or sanitation. They are dying of typhus and starvation. He is aware of that.
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