The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day004.10

Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day004.10
Last-Modified: 2000/08/01

   Q.   But you see, Mr Irving, if you are looking for evidence
        both ways, what was known in Berlin about what was going
        on in the East, and before launching yourself into an
        assertion that these were their unauthorized crimes of
        some wicked people in the East, you ought to be looking at
        things like that if they exist, ought you not?
   A.   I did indirectly, if you remember I offered a major reward
        for anybody who could find the kind of evidence.  If it is
        provided, the kind of evidence I am sure people would
        stepped forward with outstretched hand --
   Q.   I think, Mr Irving, you are shortly going to try his
        Lordship's patience if you are not careful.
   A.   -- that was a short and perhaps cheap answer.
   Q.   That was not an answer to my question. If you assert that
        these killings were the unauthorized criminal acts of
        certain wild SS cowboys in the East, then you ought to be
        looking for evidence both ways before you make that
   A.   Which killings are we taking about, the killings of German
        Jews, or killings of the rest, if I may put it that way?
   Q.   We will have to do the paper chase after lunch.  --
   A.   There is a very significant distinction, I think, in the
        statement I made that the killings stopped.

.          P-85

   Q.   -- no, Mr Irving, sometimes -- I know it is tiring to
        concentrate hard all the time, I know that, sometimes
        I think you just do not hear what I say.  I am talking
        about the killings in the East.  Leave the German Jews out
        of it for a moment, because at the beginning they were in
        tiny minority anyway.
   A.   But my reference to the wild minority carrying on was a
        reference to German Jews.
   Q.   No.  You, I think, have asserted -- if I am wrong then
        I say after the adjournment we will do a paper chase to
        see whether I am wrong, if you say I am wrong -- you have
        asserted on a number of occasions, have you not, that this
        sort of thing, like what happened in Kovno, like the sort
        of thing we have seen in that Minsk document, were not
        part of policy, they were just things that happened.  You
        said just now about those Berlin Jews, they got to the end
        of line, that was that and after that they were in hand of
        the wicked witch?
   A.   The system operated from Berlin out to the East.  I think
        we have conceded this, so far as there was a system.  But
        I think that what you failed to establish, if I may say
        so, is to establish that the system operated from Berlin
        outwards to Hitler headquarters as well, and that I should
        have known about and I ignored it.
   Q.   No.  Do I have now a clear concession that what the SS
        were doing in the East, whether they were Polish, Russian

.          P-86

        or Berlin Jews, no, leave the Berlin Jews out of it for
        the moment; what the SS were doing in the East to the
        Russian Jews, and the Baltic Jews, to a total of
        1.5 million, I do not believe the numbers matter, we
        a concession now, do we, that that was done on the
        authority of and with the knowledge of at least
        in Berlin?
   A.   Yes, quite clearly.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  The buck stopped there, did it, did it go
        Himmler as well?
   A.   I think quite clearly this August 1941 message to
        Mr Rampton probably wants to proceed next is a
        to the overall security activity of Einsatzgruppen in
        East, on which Hitler wished to be kept informed, and
        try and say this obviously refers to specifically to
        killing of Jews and only to the killing of Jews is a
        adventurous leap to make.  Obviously you have to
        this desire of Hitler to be kept informed, but it is
        dangerous then therefore to say therefore he must also
        have been told in great detail about everything else
        is going on.
   MR RAMPTON:  I am trying to take it slowly, Mr Irving,
        I want to be sure of the bricks which I am building.
        I have built brick No. One, at long last I have a
        concession that Heydrich authorized and knew about
        shootings of these hundreds of thousand of Jews in the

.          P-87

   A.   Which Jews are we talking about?  Can we be quite
        specific.  We are talking about the eastern non-German
   MR RAMPTON:  We are talking about the ones the
        Einsatzgruppen --
   A.   Yes, it is not a concession because I said it all
        I think the word "concession" is loaded.  It implies
        I said something differently previously.
   Q.   -- that is what I will look for over the adjournment
        because I believe that you have on numbers of
        not in this court, said almost exactly that.
   A.   I shall await this revelation with interest.
   Q.   I may be wrong, if I am wrong I will tell you so.
                  Now I am going to go a stage up from
        I am going to go to Himmler next.  This is a document
        which I perfectly well accept you did not have at the
        when you wrote your books.  My Lord, it is Himmler's
        of the 18th December 1941.  It is referred to on page
        of the first part of Dr Longerich's report, and the
        document itself in one of several versions is at
        160 of H4(ii).
   A.   While we are looking for that, can I just say this is
        precisely the kind of document, of course, that falls
        under my strictures about is it strictly relevant to

.          P-88

        issues as pleaded?  If it was not available to me at
        time I wrote the books ...
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I have been wondering about that and I
        think  ----
   A.   It is of historical interest and I am quite happy
   Q.   Yes, but just wait a minute, Mr Irving.  I think there
        a lot of force in what you say, but I do not think I
        stop Mr Rampton cross-examining about it because if he
        were, for example, able to show by producing a
        you did not know about when you were writing, that it
        points unequivocally in whatever direction, and you
        to deny it, he might be entitled to say to me at the
        of the case, well, that shows that you are not
        when you are shown a new document.
   A.   He is a hard, cold denier, yes.
   Q.   But I do accept the force of what you say and Mr
        may takes these documents perhaps rather than shorter
        the ones that were available.
   MR RAMPTON:  I think it is very easy to do that because
        is really only one question comes out of it.  The
        is I cannot find it.
   A.   I have, of course, used the document in the new
version of
        the book that has now gone to press.
   MR RAMPTON:  It is about three quarters of the way through
        4(ii).  Has Mr Irving got file 4(ii)?
   A.   I am very familiar with what the document says and its

.          P-89

        shape.  "Juden frager"...
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  But I am not, Mr Rampton, so can you show
        where I go for it?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes, my Lord, footnote 160.  This reproduction
        the note is the best I have.  It comes from that
        book, Witte.  It is a Himmler manuscript, my Lord.
        Lordship may recognize the handwriting.
   MR RAMPTON:  Before we look at the substance of this,
        Mr Irving, perhaps it is best to say what it says.  We
        better just tell everybody what it means.  I hope I
        it correctly.  It is headed:  "Fuhrer Hauptquartier",
        it not?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Which is the "Fuhrer's headquarters".  Underneath that
        know which headquarters because Himmler tells us, the
        Wolfsschanze, the Wolf's Lair.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Did you say FN 160?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes, 160.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Mine is 17th December 1941.
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes, but on the right-hand side it should be
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I had assumed that was what was being
        transcribed on the left-hand side.
   MR RAMPTON:  No, it is not, I am afraid.  In fact, in the
        the transcription is on the next following page behind

.          P-90

        Himmler note.  "Fuhrer Hauptquartier, Wolfsschanze
        18.12.41 at 1600 hours", 16H that is?
   A.   Yes, that is correct.
   Q.   Underneath the XII for December, the Roman 12, Himmler
        drawn a line or somebody has, have they not?  A
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   So the page divides into two columns?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Above the right-hand column underlined is the
        word "Fuhrer"?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   And in the left-hand column Himmler has written -- are
        these written in pen or pencil or what?
   A.   Himmler used a green crayon.  He or his adjutant,
        Grothmann, would write a list of topics to discuss
        Hitler on the left-hand side of the line, and then on
        right-hand side sometimes there would be a one or two
        comment usually reflecting what Hitler had decided.
   Q.   On the left-hand side, this is what you might call the
        agenda then, correct?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Himmler's has written "Juden frager"?
   A.   The Jewish question.
   Q.   And under "Fuhrer" in the right-hand column he has
        "aus partizan auszurotten, has he not?

.          P-91

   A.   "To be wiped out as partisans".
   Q.   Yes.  This ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Does it say "aus surotten", sorry?
   A.   "Auszurotten".
   MR RAMPTON:  This, Mr Irving, is an important document?
   A.   It is a document, but, as Trevor Roper said once,
        it is new that does not mean it is necessarily true,
        also you have to look at every document like that and
        because it is new, you have to fit it into the general
        fabric.  It is one mosaic stone that you have to fit
        the rest of the mosaic.  But I appreciate it is a
        document, a cardinal document.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  When did you first see it?
   A.   I could not actually put a date on it.  It became
        knowledge in, I think, the summer of last year when a
        young German historian published it in a learned essay
        sometime later I obtained the actual facsimile from --
   Q.   That was the first time you had seen it when you saw
        last summer?
   A.   That is correct.
   MR RAMPTON:  And the natural meaning or import,
        significance, call it what you will, for an historian,
        course, he has to take everything into account, but at
        first blush this would suggest that Hitler had told
        Himmler to wipe out the Jews as partisans?  Do you
   A.   This is an interpretation which is put on that

.          P-92

   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  But the question was, do you agree?
   A.   Not in that form, my Lord.
   MR RAMPTON:  Tell me how you read this.  I would be very
   A.   "Jewish question", first of all, the literal
        is:  "Jewish question, to be liquidated as partisans".
        Once again we are faced with the problem of trying to
        define which Jews we are talking about, which Jews is
        Himmler likely to have been talking with Hitler about
        that afternoon, on December 16th 1941.  Presumably, it
        the Jews in the Baltic and on the Eastern front.
   Q.   Suppose you are right about that ----
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   What else?
   A.   --- to be liquidated as partisans.  I am quite happy
        use the word "liquidated" as that translation for "aus
        hotten" on that occasion.  I think it is quite clear
        they were going to be, I forget the phrase the
        use, terminated with extreme prejudice, partisans on
        Eastern front were shot, they were executed, and the
        question, of course, which hangs over this document is
        which Jews specifically are being talked about.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  We have agreed, have we not?
   A.   Yes.
   MR RAMPTON:  I do not know, I am not an historian ----

.          P-93

   A.   Well, is it German Jews being deported to the East who are
        falling under that ambit or just all the rest?
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Well, you would say no because of the
        document that we were looking at the other day, "Keine
   A.   Precisely, my Lord.
   MR RAMPTON:  If may or may not be, Mr Irving, that is not at
        the moment what we are talking.  This is evidence that
        Hitler gave authority for the massacre at least ----
   A.   Of Jews.
   Q.   --- of Jews in the East?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Yes.  That, I think, as I recall, is the view that
        Dr Longerich takes?
   A.   I do not think there is any dispute between the parties on

Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.