The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day002.05

Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day002.05
Last-Modified: 2000/07/20

   A.   So I have added no colour, I have turned up no volume.
        These are the extraordinary words used to describe me by
        the Defendants.  They say, "that the Plaintiff", myself,
         "is an historian who has inexplicably misled", in other
        words, the word "inexplicably" is in the original book,
         "misled academic historians like Ernst Nolte into quoting
        historically invalid points contained in his writings", my
        writings, "and who applauds the internment of Jews in Nazi
        concentration camps".  I am accused of having applauded

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        the internment of Jews in Nazi concentration camps which
        is a particularly perverse allegation in my view.
                  No. (iii) "that the Plaintiff", David Irving,
         "routinely perversely and by way of his profession, but
        essentially in order to serve his own reprehensible
        purposes ideological leanings and/or political agenda",
        and here are the allegations, "distort accurate historical
        evidence and information; misstate; misconstrue; misquote;
        falsify statistics; falsely attribute conclusions to
        reliable sources; manipulate documents; wrongfully quote
        from books that directly contradict my arguments in such a
        manner as completely to distort their author's objectives
        and while counting on the ignorance or indolence of the
        majority of readers not to realize this".

   Q.   May I interrupt and ask you this?  Am I right in thinking
        (and I may be quite wrong) that really that is the
        imputation against you which causes you the most concern?

   A.   Professionally, clearly so, my Lord.

   Q.   Yes.

   A.   I mean, the name calling is neither here nor there and
        your Lordship may make of it what your Lordship wants,
        I submit.  Clearly, some of the name calling will stick,
        but it would be a real waste of this court's time if
        I take each of the names I have been called in turn and
        try to prove that is not so.  This is what has cost me my
        career, unless the court disposes otherwise at the end of

.                                      P-140

        this trial, my Lord.

                  I complained that the work complained of
        describes me as an Adolf Hitler partisan who wears
        blinkers and skews documents and misrepresents data in
        order to reach historically untenable conclusions
        specifically those that exonerate Hitler.

                  I am accused of being an ardent admirer of the
        Nazi leader, Adolf Hitler, an ardent admirer of the Nazi
        leader, Adolf Hitler; that I conceive myself as carrying
        on Hitler's criminal legacy and that I placed a
        self-portrait of Hitler over my desk; that I
        have described a visit to Hitler's mountain top retreat as
        a spirit experience; that I have described myself as a
        moderate fascist.  These are the allegations contained in
        the book.
                  Further, that before the Zundel trial began in
        1988 in Toronto, I, the Plaintiff, compromising my
        integrity as an historian, and in an attempt to pervert
        the course of justice and one Faurisson, Robert Faurisson
        whom we saw in the video, that I wrongfully and/or
        fraudulently conspired together to invite an American
        prison warden and thereafter one Fred Leuchter, an
        engineer who is depicted by the Defendants as a charlatan,
        to testify as a tactic for proving that the gas chambers
        were a myth".
                  The loaded words in that sentence, my Lord, are

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        words that are actually contained in the book.
                   "That the Plaintiff after attending Mr Zundel's
        trial in 1988 in Toronto, having previously hovered on the
        brink now denies the murder by the Nazis of the Jews".  So
        I deny the murder by the Nazis of the Jews, this is one of
        the allegations.  That I described the memorial to the
        dead at Auschwitz as a tourist attraction; that I was
        branded by the British House of Commons as "Hitler's
        Heir", and that I was denounced by the same British House
        of Commons as a Nazi propagandist and long-time Hitler
        apologist and accused by them of publishing a fascist
        publication, and that this marked the end of my reputation
        in England.
                  My Lord, it may possibly not be familiar to the
        Defendants that there is a distinction between an early
        day motion being put in the House of Commons by a group of
        disgruntled members of Parliament and the House of Commons
        actually voting and reaching a decision.  It is nothing
        more than a propaganda move by people who wish to draw
        attention to something within the privileged atmosphere.
        It is rather like the privileged atmosphere that exists in
        this court, my Lord; people can say what they want about
        me and the newspapers are free to print it.

   Q.   Yes, well, I certainly do know about early day motions,

   A.   That some other person had discovered in a Russian archive

.                                      P-142

         -- this is the allegation in the book -- that some other
        person had discovered in the Russian archive in 1992 the
        Goebbels' diaries, that it was assumed that these would
        shed light on the conduct of the Final Solution, but that
        I was hired and paid a significant sum by the London
        Sunday Times to transcribe and translate, although I was a
        discredited and ignominious figure and, although by hiring
        the Plaintiff, the newspaper threw its task as a
        gatekeeper of the truth and of journalistic ethics to the
        winds and, although there was thereby increased the danger
        that the Plaintiff would in order to serve his own
        reprehensible purposes misstate, misconstrue, misquote,
        falsify, distort and/or manipulate these sets of documents
        which others had not seen, namely, the Goebbels' diaries;
        I would do all that in order to propagate my reprehensible
        views and that I, the Plaintiff, was unfit to perform such
        a function for this newspaper.
                  Finally, the book contained the allegation that
        I violated an agreement with the Russian archives, and
        that I took and copied many plates without permission
        causing significant damage to them and rendering them of
        limited use to subsequent researchers.
   Q.   Mr Irving, the first of those imputations that you say
        that Professor Lipstadt makes against you in her book is
        one that links you with Hamas and Hezbollah, and again
        I think you indicated earlier on that you wanted to say

.                                      P-143

        something about those organizations?
   A.   My Lord, I put to your Lordship a small bundle of
        documents ----
   Q.   Yes.
   A.   --- on those organisations.
   Q.   I have read it.
   A.   It is probably not necessary for me to go in detail
        through them.  I will indicate to your Lordship that
        reliable sources, like the BBC or other news media
        organizations, have consistently described the Hezbollah
        and Hamas, which are two Muslim fundamentalist terrorist
        organizations, as being criminal organizations whose
        members are not allowed into other countries and are
        actively pursued by the forces of law and order and,
        indeed, actively pursued with less law and order by the
        forces of the Mossad, who sometimes dispose of them by
        jabbing the aforementioned hypodermic needle laden with
        nerve gas into their neck which is one of the documents
        which I put before your Lordship.
   Q.   Yes, I have read them.
   A.   So anybody who is described in this reckless way as being
        a member of the Hamas or the Hezbollah or some other
        similar terrorist organization is at risk of being
        declared fair game with the forces of law and order or, at
        the very least, for the immigration authorities and
        countries who already look askance upon people for various

.                                      P-144

        reasons and, at worst, they are having their life put at
        risk or they are going to be ruffed up in the street by
        people who disagree with the Hezbollah or the Hamas.
                  I do not share your Lordship's earlier opinion
        at the pretrial review that is a matter which falls under
        section 5 of the Act, my Lord.
   Q.   I did not express any concluded view, obviously.
   A.   I am sorry, my Lord.  This was totally misquoted.
   Q.   Can you help me on something else?  You will have the
        opportunity to make submissions about that later on.  You
        supplied documents relating to the bombing in Oklahoma
        City.  Does that feature in Professor Lipstadt's book?
   A.   It does not feature in the book, my Lord, but I thought
        this was the appropriate bundle to put them, in February
        1996 the media in the United States, where such
        allegations can be made with impunity, raised the
        allegation that I had supplied the trigger mechanism for
        the Oklahoma City bomb.
                  Now, the Oklahoma City bombing features in some
        of the documents quoted, I believe, by Professor Evans or
        by Professor Brian Levin, because they quote from my diary
        on that particular day; and to be accused of having
        anything to do with that crime was something I found
        particularly repugnant and I regard it as being part of
        the general campaign to vilify me and blacken my name
        which originated from the same sources which have funded

.                                      P-145

        the Defendants with the material they have used to smear
        me.  It is no more directly associated with them than that.
   Q.   Thank you very much.
   A.   But it is like trying to put a hook into a custard
        You cannot really pin anything down until you stand
        and you see the whole continuum of the onslaught to
        I have been subjected.
   Q.   The next thing you might want to deal with, Mr Irving,
        the effect that that the publication of the book of
        you complain has had on you.  I have seen what you say
        your witness statement about that, but if you want to
        expatiate on that, then please do.
   A.   My Lord, people have said to me, "Why have you picked
        that book and those particular Defendants?" and the
        answer is because it is an open and shut case.  I have
        been accused of doing things which they cannot
        If we admittedly find it more difficult to disprove
        subjective claims, ad hominem statements that are
        there are certain specific claims that are made, like
        Adolf Hitler portrait or like the misquoting of
        or deliberate and reprehensible mistranslation or
        distortion, which are easy to disprove and they are
        ones which reflect on my professional integrity and on
        career and on my livelihood, which is precisely what
        Defamation act, as I understand it, is about.

.                                      P-146

                  This is one reason why I decided that the
        had come after 30 years to take some kind of action
        I did with the utmost reluctance because Penguin
        the First Defendants, have published books of my own
        the past and you are not eager to go and sue people
        have published your own books.
                  The book, undoubtedly, had caused me serious
        damage.  When I consider, admittedly, this was not
        within the jurisdiction, and it is possible the
        counsel objected and it is, therefore, relevant, but
        view of the fact that the publication of this book and
        author of the book were widely quoted in justification
        the American publishers for cancelling my Dr Goebbels'
        biography, which was for me a particularly wounding
        injurious event, when I wrote the biography of
        Dr Goebbels, it was a task of nine years, my Lord.
                  We have just spent three years preparing
        case, writing that one book which your Lordship has
        took me nine years.  It went through, I think, six
        different drafts; the first draft entirely in
        the drafts of the manuscript which the Defendants have
        seen fills some ten cubic feet of boxes, as it was
        and refined and then finally totally rewritten when I
        into possession of the diaries.  The book was set to
        restore my reputation completely until the United
        because your Lordship may well agree that the book

.                                      P-147

        be described as "anti-Semitic", the book, in my
        submission, cannot be described as justifying the
        Holocaust or admiring Hitler or exonerating Hitler in
        kind of way, the book was, I consider, one of the most
        well-founded and well-researched and watertight
        of the higher leadership of the Third Reich that I
        ever written.  It was the crowning point of my career.
        waited with the utmost eagerness for publication day
        the United States, shortly before which the publishers
        contacted me and said, Mr Irving, we are beginning to
        under attack from all quarters.  One of the quarters
        from the second Defendant.
   Q.   Your evidence is, is it, that the -- I think you said
        author" did you mean...
   A.   The Second Defendant.
   Q.   The American publishers of the Goebbels book told you
        Professor Lipstadt and --
   A.   No, my Lord, media accounts have linked Professor
        with this particular event.

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