Posted Wednesday, June 12, 2002

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The Irish Times

Readers' Letters, Dublin, September 3, 2001


The Casement 'Black Diaries'

Sir, - THE article, "Perversion of history led to Casement's downfall" (Opinion, August 22nd) contains so many errors and misapprehensions that it really requires a lengthy volume to bring your readers back to reality. For the moment, though, perhaps you will allow me to draw attention to the more serious perversions of history that it contains.

The main problem is one of corrupt sources. It is alleged that the Black Diaries were forged by a Swiss forger named Zwingleman and that the source of this information is an interrogation of the Gestapo leader Heinrich Mueller. I have in my possession Mueller's dossier. No mention is made of Zwingleman or Roger Casement.

But more importantly, the Barnes Review, which published what purported to be a transcript of Mueller's interrogation, gave as its source a book by Gregory Douglas. Enquiries addressed to Dr Klaus A. Lankheit, Kommissarischer Archivleiter, Institut für Zeitgeschichte, München, brought forth this response: "We have in our possession a detailed and painstaking analysis by an expert, which shows that the supposed secret files are a very poor forgery. Among other things, the analysis proves that the American Gregory Douglas is in fact a German."

Roger Sawyer,
Bembridge, Isle of Wight (UK)


Peter Stahl alias Gregory Douglas, dossier
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