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David Irving

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Letter from David Irving to his former Editor

Tom Congdon

December 20, 1988

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December 20, 1988


Dear Tom,
  1. Did you ever wonder why that swine John J Lukacs gave us that stinking, lying review in the NYT for "The War Between the Generals"?

    Do you think, reading his enclosed letter to John Toland, jealousy might have had something to do with it? I found it in the Roosevelt Library files!*




    Tom Congdon


    * FDR Library, Hyde Park, NY: Toland collection, "Lukacs, John," box 53.

"Old Pickering School House"
Valley Park Road
Williams' Corner
Phoenixville, Pennsylvania 19460

21 March 1972

Dear Mr Toland,

I am very grateful for these enclosures, and I much enjoyed talking with you last week,

I should be very glad to spend more time with you re Hitler. A few years ago I entertained seriously the idea of doing a Hitler biography. But I am not doing too well with commercial publishers (though my books are being published by them) and I would need a year or more off. Perhaps not more, because I have a rather large personal library, (I live in the country, and it is a pleasant place, less than an hour from Philadelphia, and you are most welcome to visit me and spend a day or an evening,) A little mere than two years ago I wrote a piece on Hitler for the N Y Times Sunday Magazine, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of his death. It was (and is) one of my better articles but they did not take it; my agent liked it v. much and it was then that I mentioned a Hitler book and he went on the phone and then and there we learned about the Irving contract (with a $35,000 advance) just then concluded, So I said & thought, forget it, But my fascination with H. remains.

I am inclined to be convinced that H's parental grandfather was Jewish, but my conviction rests on intuition and interior reasoning rather than on external documentation I'd be glad to talk to you about this some time, It is connected with my knowledge to the effect that his relationship to the Jewish "problem?' was not as simple and as emotional as almost everyone thinks (which does not mean, of course, that it was not the most powerful, and perhaps central, obsession of his life.)

In this respect I find the Bloch interview & article extremely interesting & even moving, on occasion. I think it wd be worth while for you to track down Dr Bloch's descendants and get hold (a) of his papers (b) of some of their reminiscences. (Did you ever read George Orwell's few remarks on Hitler? they shd be available in the new collected O. edition. He was attacked by Mary McCarthy for it -- of course,)

Stephanie Hohenlohe's memory is fading (it was never too accurate) if you want her address I can let you have it. The OSS interview is largely useless, though I am most happy to have it -- for once, her memory is correct while Hanfstaengl's is wrong. Re Skorzeny -- more in person (though I do not have v. much). I shd advise you to look up a Quadrangle paperback, Schramm, ed. on H, as military commander -- v. good, Repeat that I'd like very much to meet you again,

Very sincerely,

John Lukacs

        John Lukacs


* She never was H's mistress, but a go-between, a kind of social-diplomatic butterfly.

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