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Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day020.08

Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day020.08
Last-Modified: 2000/07/24

   Q.   I do not really want to get bogged down in this kind of
        maze.  Can I just put it to you like this?  Will you
        accept that, on the balance of probabilities, the
        Bundescriminalamt did carry out tests on the ink and came
        up with the surprising conclusion that portions were in
        fact ball point ink?
   A.   It depends what you mean by "portions".  I think that
        the crucial point.  My understanding, having read the
        summary of the forensic scientific investigations
        out on the diaries, in the introduction to the kind of
        official standard edition, scholarly edition, is that
        there were some small stylistic emendations in ball
        pen, but that paper and ink and so on were all of the

.          P-66

        diaries themselves were derived from the 1940s, i.e.
        before the end of the war.
   Q.   How long has this been your understanding?  Did you
        this understanding at the time you wrote your expert
   A.   Let me just see.
   Q.   In other words, is this knowledge about portions of
        diary being rewritten in ball point ink or whatever
        or some years ago?
   A.   Well, I have looked -- my knowledge or whose
   MR IRVING:  Your knowledge we are talking about.
   A.   My knowledge.
   Q.   At the time you wrote this report.
   MR RAMPTON:  Footnote 118.
   A.   Thank you.  Yes, The Critical Edition, 1989.
   MR IRVING:  My question is, of course, if you were aware of
        fact that these tests had been carried out and that
        was this, shall we say, ambiguous finding?
   A.   I do not think it is ambiguous at all, Mr Irving.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes, I wanted to ask about that.
   A.   It is quite clear.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Professor Evans, may I put this question
        you because then we can get on?  Would it be an unfair
        reading of the report that you have just been shown by
        Mr Irving that it, in fact, far from confirming that
it is
        a forgery, confirms that it is authentic because it

.          P-67

        that there are some sections which were added
        subsequently, but by necessary inference is saying
        most of it was genuine and already there and not in
        point?  Not very articulately expressed, but do you
        with that proposition?
   A.   Well, yes, and that is my understanding of the
        investigations which were carried out both by the
        German Criminal Office and by the Dutch Centre for War
        Documentation, that the diaries were genuine, but that
        there were some small stylistic emendations, certainly
        whole pages or whole sections, let alone the whole
        being fake or a novel.
   MR IRVING:  Have I ever said that the whole thing was
        in ball point pen?
   A.   You said whole pages are written in ball point pen.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  You said it was a novel, Mr Irving, did
   MR IRVING:  The third version is a novel, my Lord.  The
        version is a novel with the names changed.
   A.   You did say in the Daily Mirror on 27th November 1979:
         "Many forgeries are among records, including the
diary of
        Anne Frank".  "The Anne Frank" -- another occasion in
        1986:  "The Anne Frank diary of which you have all
        is partly written in ball point ink, parts of the Anne
        Frank diaries are written in ball point ink".
   Q.   Are you aware of the fact that the father of Anne
Frank in

.          P-68

        one of the libel actions obtained an affidavit from a
        handwriting expert who testified that the entire
        were written in the same handwriting of the same
        including, therefore, the ball point passages?
   A.   No, I am not aware of that.
   Q.   Whether that is true or not, in other words, this
        allegation that the entire diaries, or this finding by
        expert that the entire diaries were written in one
        handwriting, was it not reasonable for somebody to say
        1979, as I said in the passage you just quoted, that
        diaries were suspect?
   A.   That is not quite what you said, Mr Irving.  You did
        say they were suspect.  You said they were fake.
   Q.   Let us take it stage by stage.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Let the witness answer first.  You
        that you were only saying that they were suspect.
        Professor Evans, do you think that Mr Irving went
   A.   I do, my Lord.  He is saying they are a forgery.
   MR IRVING:  Is that not a reasonable conclusion, if the
        himself has produced evidence to the courts that the
        handwriting is the same the whole way through,
        graphological evidence by affidavit in one of these
        actions that the handwriting is the same and that the
        handwriting turns out to be partly in ball point ink?
   A.   Mr Irving, you said in 1993 that the diaries were a
        the handwriting was not hers, whole pages were written

.          P-69

        ball point pen, a 13 year old girl would not have the
        nouse to write a document of that sort at all ----
   Q.   Professor Evans, can you stick with chronology ----
   A.   This is a long time after the ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Let the witness answer.
   A.   This is well after the official edition had been
        in 1989.  This is talking, what, four years after
   MR IRVING:  Can we stick to the chronology, please?  We are
        present back in 1979 and 1980, right?
   A.   Yes, and in my report, Mr Irving, I cite what you say
        1989, in 1993.
   Q.   And it is very convenient to confuse the chronology,
        if we sort things out ----
   A.   There is not confusing about that chronology at all,
        Mr Irving.  It is quite clear what you say in 1993;
        assert that it is, that it is a fake.  It is a
   Q.   Let us take this in stages.  First of all, will you
        that the third edition written by the daughter of Otto
        Frank, Anne Frank, is written by her as a novel in
        she has changed the names in her own diary into novel
   A.   No, the official edition published by the Dutch Centre
        War Documentation is a diary.
   Q.   Will you accept that the third eversion she has
written is
        written as a novel with the names changed in novel
   A.   I have to at this point confess I am not expertise --
I do

.          P-70

        not have the expertise to go into that amount of
        I have looked at the official edition and it is quite
        clear to me that that is a diary.
   Q.   So if it is a diary, why are the names changed then?
   A.   The official edition.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Well, I can think of all sorts of
        At the moment I do not understand the significance of
        Frank ----
   MR IRVING:  Well, because he is emphasising there ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Please let me finish.  I do not
        the significance of it having been converted into a
        if it be the case that the original was a diary --
        into a novel if it be the case that the original was a
   MR IRVING:  If your Lordship attaches no significance to
        word "novel", then I will abandon that particular
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  My impression of the evidence so far is
        you have dismissed Anne frank's alleged diary as being
        its totality no more than a novel, i.e. a work of
        fiction.  If I am wrong about that, no doubt you will
        disabuse me.
   MR IRVING:  If your Lordship is going to attach importance
        the word "novel", then perhaps we should look at
        what the allegations are and the passages that are
        quoted.  Can I just get the chronology straightened
        because this is what the expert witness is, I think,

.          P-71

        seeking to confuse.
                  There are two important thresholds to be
        here.  The first threshold that we cross is the
        investigation by the German Government laboratory in
        and the second threshold is the authoritative
        investigation by the Dutch authorities which was a few
        years ago.  Now, the question is whether I heeded each
        these authoritative enquiries or whether I disregarded
   A.   And the answer is that you disregarded them.
   Q.   Well, let us take it stage by stage.  Before 1980, was
        I entitled to say that because the handwriting
        said that the handwriting was the same the whole way
        through this opus and parts of it were in ball point
        therefore, the whole opus was suspect.  Was that a
        reasonable conclusion?
   A.   No, I do not think it was because the parts that were
        ball point ink were only stylistic emendations.
   Q.   But if they were said by the father to be in the same
        handwriting the whole way through -- this is the point
        I am trying to make -- if he produced expert evidence
        the handwriting was unchanged?
   A.   Well, you would have to -- you would have to present
        with the written evidence for the claims you are
        I find it very difficult to deal with it in the way
        you are ----

.          P-72

   Q.   Well, you have set yourself up here as an expert on
        particular matter and now each time we come up with an
        important ----
   A.   Let me try to give the context of this again, I am
        to ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Page 156, the criticism you are making,
        Professor Evans, is of what Mr Irving said in 1993.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   That is the criticism.
   A.   Exactly.
   Q.   There is no point, Mr Irving, in going back to 1980
        because it was in the late 80s, as I understand it,
        the scientific evidence, so the Defendants say,
        which established that these were authentic diaries.
        went on after that to say that they were novels and
that a
        13 year old could not have written such a document.
   MR IRVING:  My Lord ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  That is the point that is made against
   MR IRVING:  What exactly is said in this 1993 passage?
        Lordship has it in front of you.  It is the indented
        passage here:  "Are you aware that they have made a
        report?  I say:  "Doesn't surprise me".  This is a
        selective excerpt.  If there was any specific
reference by
        me in 1993 for saying that the diaries in their
        are a fake, believe me, this expert witness would,
        have quoted it?

.          P-73

   A.   Well, let me quote 9th November 1993 broadcast.  This
        video tape 207, and it is in English in tape 213.
   Q.   Is this in your report?
   A.   No.  This is in my response to your written questions,
        it is available.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Shall we try to find this?  I would quite
        like to find it if we can.
   A.   My Lord.  It is in my written response to Mr Irving's
        written questions.
   Q.   No, I meant the original.  Is it in one of the
        1993?  Where was the speech?  Do you know?  Was it in
   A.   It is rather complicated, my Lord.  It is a -- yes, it
        in Australia.  It is not clear whether it is
Australian or
        American.  It is a version of a Danish television
        programme which is also broadcast in German on German
        Television, but there should be a transcript of tape
   MR RAMPTON:  My Lord, if your Lordship has got, I do not
        what it is called, Evans 2, is it, the file Evans 2?
   MR RAMPTON:  Behind tab 1 there are Professor Evans'
        to Mr Irving's written questions.  On page 5 -- sorry,
        somebody has restamped it.  Page 5 is the internal
        numbering of that document.  At paragraph 9 your
        will see set out the history, as it were, for the
        genealogy of this extract in the report.  There is a

.          P-74

        stamped at the bottom of the page.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I do not know what you are looking at,
        I am looking at, I think, something different.
   MR RAMPTON:  Well, the document is dated 7th February 2000
        it should be in the front of Evans 2.
   A.   This is the second set of replies to Mr Irving's
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Have I got it?
   MR RAMPTON:  You should have.  It should look like that.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Sorry.  Yes, I have.  I beg your pardon.
   MR RAMPTON:  In tab 1.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Page 5?
   MR RAMPTON:  Page 5, paragraph 9.  Page 5 at the top,
        9, it runs over to page 6 is the history of this
        particular extract.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Have you got this, Mr Irving?

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