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Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day014.02

Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day014.02
Last-Modified: 2000/07/20

   Q.   That was another point Mr Irving made, I think.
   A.   Yes, I am sorry, I had forgotten that.  We see again that
        sometimes it is handwritten and sometimes it is typed.
   Q.   Yes.  Sorry, that was taking you back.
   A.   Yes.  Now we come to No. 10 and there we see that in fact
        both the person who dictated the letter and the person who

.          P-9

        typed the letter in this case have a period behind their
        initials, and in fact behind the person who typed it there
        is even a dash.  No. 11, the letter of 19th July 1944, we
        see that this is a letter dictated by Steilv.Bauleiter
        Teichmann.  We see there is a period behind the shortened
        form of his name and a period behind the letter indicating
        the secretary.
                  So I think that the only conclusion one can draw
        out of this is that there was no standard procedure in the
                  I have added two other documents and this has to
        do really with a challenge Mr Irving gave in his letter to
        me which was posted on the web.  I do not know if I can
        address that, but it is an alternative way of dating a
        letter, which says "am" instead of "den".  So sometimes it
        says "Auschwitz den" and then the date comes, but
        sometimes it also says "Auschwitz am" 14th May 1943.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Mr Irving, I do not think that was
        Mr Irving's, if he will forgive me, best point.  They are
        both used, are they not?
   MR IRVING:  I accept his point on that.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I think you did.
   A.   Then there was one other thing which came up yesterday and
        I do not know if I am allowed to give testimony on that,
        which was the number of 2.5 million and 1.1 million which
        were given by Hoess.

.          P-10

   MR IRVING:  Yes.
   A.   I have re-read that passage.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  You do not object to this?  You introduced it
        Mr Irving, so I think it is right.
   A.   I would like to go back to the point in my report which is
        at page 306 where the actual quotation is.  I have
        repeated it in a few other places but I think 306 is a
        good point to do that.
   A.   It starts in the second paragraph:  "On the basis of the
        figure of 2.5 million", and I do not know if you want me
        to read it?
   Q.   Shall I just cast my eye down it?  (Pause for reading)
        Yes, I have looked at quickly.  I have read it before.
   A.   OK.  So the point is that what Hoess says -- I will
        summarize it -- is that there is this figure of two and a
        half million which is mentioned by Eichmann.  This is the
        only figure we have because Eichmann mentions it.  But
        then he says that I have only kept to this figure because
        Eichmann has given it, but I myself think it is too high.
        Then he makes his own calculation on the basis of
        transports coming into Auschwitz.  So he actually
        challenges that figure.  After he has first mentioned it
        he challenges this figure and he comes then to a total
        number of deportations of 1,125,000 Jews going to
        Auschwitz at the bottom of that paragraph.

.          P-11

                  So that I think will in some way resolve the
        confusion about these two numbers.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Thank you.  That is helpful.
   MR RAMPTON:  My Lord, there are a couple of other points --
        I have seen these documents for the first time myself --
        which I just draw attention to, perhaps through the
        witness.  Can we go back to page 10, Professor van Pelt?
        I do not know that you did draw attention to this, it
        really is obvious.  There is underneath the Kommandantur
        KL there is an AZ and a colon.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   And then a number.  Do you see that that number is
        somewhat typed?  It may have been altered in hand, I
        cannot see.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   You notice also that the reference is underlined?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   If you turn over the page,, this one is coming from
        Birkenhau apparently and, unlike the previous one, the
        reference is handwritten and there is no underline.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  What is the significance of the underlining,
        do you suggest?
   MR RAMPTON:  I am not suggesting any significance at all.  All
        I am suggesting is that this is a medley.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Another variation?
   MR RAMPTON:  It depends who is typing it, it depends how fussy

.          P-12

        the boss is, all that kind of thing.  There is nothing to
        be told from these documents except that, like all
        offices, they vary in their practices.  Look, will you
        please, Professor, at page 12, again at the reference,
        there is no underline.  We see that it is apparently typed
        by a secretary called Lm, whatever gender that may have
        been.  If you turn over to the last page, again we find
        the reference both typed and underlined.  And we find that
        Lm is typing for somebody else called Eg.  Do you see that?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   You do not happen to know who Eg was, do you?
   A.   Egelich.
   Q.   It does not particularly arise out of this, I think, or
        indirectly -- do you happen to know how many secretaries
        there were at any one time?
   A.   That changed.  There are documents which have actually
        been signed by people who also had other functions.
        Normally I think there were one or two German secretaries
        and there were a number of Polish secretaries also.  For
        example, P is a Polish worker named Pluskurer.  It seems
        to be that there was no regular typing pool in the
        Zentralbauleitung.  Also the Zentralbauleitung, if you
        look at the personnel lists, changes very rapidly, with
        people moving in and people moving out.
   Q.   Thank you.

.          P-13

   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Mr Irving, if the authenticity of the
        incineration capacity is still in issue, you might want to
        cross-examine further?  I do not know.
   MR IRVING:  I think I am entitled on the points he has made, my Lord.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  You are certainly entitled to, yes.
   MR IRVING:  I will be as brief as I possibly can.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Do not hurry

               (Further cross-examined by Mr Irving)

   MR IRVING:  Firstly, I will abandon relying on the full stops.
        That will probably ease your Lordship's task in assessing
        the matter, but the other matters, I am afraid, are just
        reinforced by what I have seen here.
                  First of all, reverting to what you said about
        the witness Hoess, the Kommandant of Auschwitz, have you
        seen a handwritten confession by Hoess made in British
        captivity at the request of Colonel Draper, the British
        public prosecutor?
   A.   No, I have not seen that.
   Q.   It was one of the very first statements he made, in which
        he admitted -- it is just five or six lines long --
        having killed 2.8 million people in Auschwitz.
   A.   No, I have not seen that one.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Killing by gas?
   MR IRVING:  Just killing, my Lord.  He does not actually say.
        I rely on that purely to indicate the vacillating nature

.          P-14

        of the figures that the witness Hoess gave.
                  Reverting now to these documents that you
        very kindly produce for the court, I will take up first of
        all the point that his Lordship very astutely made about
        page 6, where you pointed out that the letter book number
        was typed.  Witness, what does the first word on that page
        mean, "Abschrift"?
   A.   That means it is a copy.
   Q.   In other words, it has been copied from the original?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Would there have been any reason why somebody copying an
        original document would have then left a space there and
        handwritten in the letter book number, which was
        presumably handwritten in on the original?  He would have
        typed a copy of the whole document, would he not?
   A.   I presume so, yes.
   Q.   So it would be wrong to draw any significance from the
        fact that that one is typed.  Stepping through the
        documents, I would just ask in general, have you seen, in
        all the documents that you have worked on in the Auschwitz
        archives, any other document in which the year 43 or 44 is
        missing from the letter register line?
   A.   Are we referring back to the original Moscow document?
   Q.   Any document at all.  Have you seen any document at all?
        I am not referring to the date of the document.  I am
        referring to the letter register line.

.          P-15

   A.   The 31550 and no year.
   Q.   That is correct, which has no year.  Have you seen any
        document at all which omits the year?
   A.   I do not remember.
   Q.   Very well.  Have you seen any document at all which has a
        secretary with the initials Ne?
   A.   As I said, I do not remember.  I could reconstruct who the
        secretary was, but that is at the moment not available to
        me.  The point I thought I made was that many different
        people are typing these letters.  We have seen, I think,
        not one time the same person typing any of these letters
        in this very small collection.
   Q.   Is it correct that there are about 50,000 such letters now
        extant, now in the archives, in Moscow and in Auschwitz?
   A.   Something like that, yes.
   Q.   Yes.  Would it surprise you that other researchers
        investigating specifically this document have looked for
        any other letter at all in all the thousands of letters
        available signed by a secretary Ne, or with the
        secretary's initials Ne on them, and there is no such
   A.   This is a big problem, of course, how to make a proof, how
        to make a negative proof.  I can imagine that people have
        been looking for this.  What I can say is that I have not
        investigated the secretary who wrote this letter.  The
        only thing I can say is that there seems to have been no

.          P-16

        consistent policy.  I must also remark that, if I were to
        be a forger ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  This is not really a policy point, is it?
   MR IRVING:  It is the only way I can phrase the question.
   A.   OK.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  It is not a policy point.  It is was there a
        secretary whose name started ne?  It is nothing to do with policy.
   A.   When I am back in Canada I can look that up, but I think
        the important point is, if I were to be forger, I would of
        course not invent a new name.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  That is a different point.
   A.   I would take one of the existing initials.
   MR IRVING:  This is clear.  So you would not be surprised if we
        found another letter with the secretary's initials Ne on
        it?  I am afraid I cannot give evidence in my
        questioning.  I can only say would you be surprised to
        hear that there is not one?
   A.   If this were to be a forgery, the forger would have been a
        very, very dumb person.
   Q.   In all the letters that you have seen, Professor van Pelt,
        including these ten you provided this morning, have
        you seen any in which the rank of the Brigadier General
        Kammler is wrong?  They have left out the words
        "Generalmayor der Waffen SS".  My Lord, I will draw your
        attention to the way it should have been.

.          P-17

   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I have noticed Kammler is the recipient of
        one of the other documents.
   MR IRVING:  It is, on page 13, my Lord.  That is the correct
        way it should have been written.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  You have the answer, that this is the only
        occasion on which the Professor has seen that happen.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   There is one final point, my Lord, which is a fourth
        question, which is possibly new and I would certainly be
        willing to let Mr Rampton come back on this one.  The
        serial number of the document 31550, is that in sequence
        with the other documents of those days?
   A.   In the file, you mean?
   Q.   Yes.
   A.   I do not remember.  I looked at the document in the file
        originally in relationship to the contents and not in
        relationship to the serial number.  I am happy to go back,
        when I am back in North America, and have the whole file
        printed out, and then this thing could be reconsidered.

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