Unless correspondents ask us not to, this Website will post selected letters that it receives and invite open debate.
John O'Rourke of New South Wales, Australia, likes Mr Irving's history of Churchill and Menzies in WW2, Thursday, June 2, 2005
Australia in WW2
JUST finished reading the second volume of Churchill's War and wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed it. Can't wait for the last volume ["Churchill's War", vol. iii: "The Sundered Dream"]
I am embarrassed to ask this but my curiosity demands it. Regarding other books on that period , have you scanned Menzies & Churchill at war, by David Day; and Betrayal at Pearl Harbor, by Rusbridger and Eric Nave?
In particular the sections covering the 'review of Singapore's defences'. And that document later being in German and possibly Japanese hands. I noticed you mentioned the story a report going to Germany via Japan and I was wondering it that was the same one. For Australians that was a key issue considering what followed. Churchill certainly covered his arse and reading your book it seemed to me, up to where he was assured of victory, was keeping all his options open.
Also the fact that all communications to Australia and within England made Menzies and Churchill's conspiracies an 'open book' so to speak.
I am sure some years ago I heard that some English were vetting Cabinet records here but sadly I had no further reference. In that respect I hope you finally get to research here and New Zealand.
One last question, the book OpJB by Chris Creighton. I am afraid I took it tongue in cheek, but the references to the Dieppe Raid [August 1942] and the record-cleaning seemed to have a ring to them. Do you give it any credibility?
David Irving replies
WELL, the simple short answer is that I normally don't read books; but I did take in a book on Churchill and Menzies, and David Day's may have been the one, as it quoted Menzies' private records and prompted me to obtain the complete Menzies diary from Canberra.
I knew the historian Rusbridger personally -- his death was a terrible end to a fine career: He strangled himself with a machine, when he found he could no longer pay his own phone bills and faced eviction. A slow and painful death, like that of another friend, John Costello, who died in agony of food poisoning in mid-Atlantic aboard a British Airways plane; got it from the oysters he had eaten two days earlier in Madrid, they said.
A warning to all who write Real History -- or eat oysters. A warning to all who write unestablished history. Eric Nave was very good. "Churchill's War", vol. iii: "The Sundered Dream" is in the machine at this moment and should be out within 12 months. Depends on my cash flow.
PS: don't forget to go along and ask awkward questions of Deborah Lipstadt when she comes to Sydney early next month! She's not accustomed to debate.