Posted Thursday, July 31, 2003

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A cult of the memory of the extermination of the Jews has emerged. -- Professor Richard "Skunky" Evans



July 31, 2003 (Thursday)
Key West, Florida .

I PHONE London to warn Benté not to collect today's emails yet, as there is a server problem. Little Jessica answers, she's on the computer, preparing an image in Adobe Photoshop. "I know how to do image-mapping," she announces, referring to a complex web design operation (she is only nine, but has her own website; I didn't even have a rabbit at that age). I say, "Yes, I use Claris Home Page." "No, she says, Image Ready™ is better."

Planning for my Real History weekend at Cincinnati is nearing completion and people are registering by every means; several folks use my tollfree number as an excuse for an extended chat at my expense. D. will speak on the assassination of Folke Bernadotte, a good topic in this age of "targeted killing".

A Danish friend contacts me with funds. I reply, thanking him: "There is a Western Union office about four miles from here and I cycle past it on the way to the next island where I usually have supper at a rustic local fishermen's place. Very useful, as we have scraped the accounts here dry. . ."


A LONDON Sunday Telegraph columnist writes: "How are you? I'm struggling through the Diary Desert that is summer. I was just reading that your brother, John, has been appointed chairman of the Racial Equality Council in Wiltshire." So that's the next little piece of monkey business the press is brewing.

I reply:

Yes; he is a high flier. He quit the Liberal Democrats after a disagreement over Paddy Ashdown's policy on homosexuals, I believe. He was previously Regional Commissioner of Wiltshire. I asked him what that meant, and he -- no doubt paraphrasing his job description -- said that after The Bomb had fallen he was authorised to emerge from his bunker and start shooting people.

I enormously admire him. From my website you will see that he and my other brother, both RAF officers, were summoned before the Air Ministry to explain themselves when I wrote my book The Destruction of Dresden (serialized for three weeks by The Sunday Telegraph in April 1963).

When I lost the Convoy PQ.17 libel action in February 1970 he was in court, and as we left (Cassell's and I having taken the biggest libel-damages hit in history in that action) he remarked that Mr Justice Lawton's devastating summing up was meant as a warning to all writers, or "pour encourager les auteurs," as he wittily put it. (When we executed Admiral Byng on the fo'csle of his boat we informed him that his execution was necessary "pour encourager les autres.")

If you contact my brother I predict that he will reply with a chapter and verse from the Holy Scriptures, about not being his brother's keeper. I would gladly acknowledge to be his: he is a great man, and I am puny in his shadow.

As for the allegations of my own racism (sigh), I point out (a) that Richard Rampton QC played the race card in the High Court quite despicably, knowing full well that even Deborah Lipstadt had not alleged in the work complained of that I was a racist, i.e. Mr Justice Gray should have refused to hear arguments or evidence either way about it. And (b) as for evidence, have a look at the page of pictures of my personal staff, many of whom are "still alive today" as one might say; in fact I had lunch with one only 3-4 weeks ago in Duke Street.

Richard EvansJUST when I thought I would not have to dwell on that unlovely person again, somebody sends to me an article which the venal and conformist Cambridge historian Richard Evans wrote for a forum on Historians and the Courts, printed in History and Theory, a journal published by Wesleyan University, in October 2002; his article is entitled: "History, Memory, and the Law." [Abstract] [Full text: pdf, Zipped to 108K]

Most of it is vintage Evans: the kind of turgid and impenetrable word-sludge over which learned academics will stoop, sagely nod, and hurry on to other more important things.

In parts he is unintentionally funny, as when he allows himself the judgement, in his first paragraph: "A cult of the memory of the extermination of the Jews has emerged." A cult? Is that just a careless usage of the word? The worship of the Holocaust certainly has adopted many of the trappings of a cult, even if its members do not yet parade down Oxford Street banging drums and wearing clothes of outlandish saffron colours, silly headgear and hair styles; oops, yes, of course, they do.

Evans summarized that the growing activism of the Holocaust has invariably involved historians being "called upon" to act as expert witnesses. As though it were a religious calling.

The phrase he studiously avoids using is "hired." These creatures, the experts, do it for the money: they are as interested in billable hours as the greediest of lawyers; they are chosen for their views with the same assiduous care as a wealthy paterfamilias selecting a painter to portray his no-longer-lovely wife, secure in the knowledge that if the fee is fat enough, the painter will overlook the obvious blemishes in the subject he is called upon to portray.

We now know -- since the Lipstadt trial, because before it he was an quantité négligéable -- that Evans is the kind of hired gun who writes whatever his masters call him to produce: shortly after the Lipstadt trial, "they" rewarded him with a sinecure position on what used to be called a quango -- a quasi autonomous non governmental organisation -- whose task was to look "objectively" into the rights and wrongs of ownership of objets d'art which had once belonged to wealthy Jews, and which they now wanted to claw back from those who had lawfully purchased them. I believe that it was even headed by former Lord Chief Justice of Appeal, Sir David Hirst, who was the plaintiff's Silk (chief of counsel) in the 1970 Convoy PQ.17 libel action. A small world, isn't it!

The problem for the ex-owners of these paintings and sculptures is that, more often than not, not only did the statute of limitations long ago run out, but these business deals were properly conducted and full payment made by the Nazi purchaser, whose only business flaw was to be called Hermann Göring or Alfred Rosenberg, and to wear a swastika armband.

How to get back the stuff these oppressed but wealthy gentleman had lawfully sold to the Nazis, admittedly at ruinous prices, and taken due payment for? Appoint a quango, and put Evans on its board. An amicable settlement is soon reached (see page 328 of this History and Theory article).

A few months after that lush job, Evans found another "calling" -- he was called upon by the New Zealand Jewish authorities to investigate the brilliant and original NZ military historian Dr Joel Hayward: well, the world now knows about the Hayward case, and the scandalous behaviour of his university.

What does this story tell us about this wretched creature, Evans, if not that fame of his conformism and amenability has spread around the world, and that while there are Down Under no academics of the right stuff, meaning of course the "wrong stuff," willing to destroy the life and career of a noted and popular young university academic because of his "non-conformist" views, they can count on and send for Evans. Und er kommt wie die Feuerwehr, as my German steelworker friends would have crudely put it.

This time, the University working party reviewing the results heard hard evidence that Evans was totally unsuited for the task which he had undertaken:

Professor G. F. Orchard, counsel for Dr Orange [Hayward's tutor], suggested that [Professor Evans] acted not as an objective expert but as a partisan advocate. Professor Orchard cited examples in the Evans report of exaggeration, omission, minimisation and misrepresentation. …
   The tone of the Evans report is strongly antagonistic and its highly critical treatment is not restricted to Dr Hayward alone. The supervisor and external examiner have both drawn attention to its polemical character, and have in turn subjected Professor Evans to similar criticism. The Working Party believes that such a response, though understandable, is unproductive. It has itself made every effort to discount Professor Evans' tendency to intemperate expression.
Pompous Pratt

THERE are two more things that Professor Richard Evans has failed to mention in his pompous article: Elsewhere he has lamented, but here he does not mention, the fact that he has earned the soubriquet The Skunk for having squirted bile from the privileged safety of the witness box on to the reputations of some of the world's leading historians, including university professors like A J P Taylor, Gordon Craig, Francis Loewenstein, and Hugh Trevor-Roper, who all rated my works well in their reviews; and he perhaps more notably skips over the fact that he was paid up to one quarter of a million dollars by one side only in the High Court, in return for giving his own neutral views on my worth.

[As for his own worth: Is this not the same Evans who publicly warned the Germans in 1987 that there was not the slightest prospect of their country ever being reunited (an event which actually happened on October 3, 1990, on precisely the day I had predicted in a press conference at the Hotel Kempinski in Berlin twelve months earlier). Yes, it is the same man.]

Just how neutral he is! On page 328 he says that the defendant author, Deborah Lipstadt alleged I had deliberately skewed history because of my "anti-Semitic political views." This is pure fiction. Not even Lipstadt's book accused me of anti-Semitism, it was a charge dreamed up by her defence lawyers, because of its intimidation-potential, and all argument pleaded on this topic should consequently have been disbarred by the Court.

At the foot of the same page Evans cites the location of Lipstadt's crooked website devoted to the trial, [warning: it sets cookies] yet makes no mention of our own far larger resource, although the judge hearing the action wrote privately to an American, during the trial, commending our website's impartiality.

Lipstadt's website reproduces not only her own documents and the uncorrected versions of the daily trial transcripts (we have the corrected versions on our website), but all the expert reports which were not introduced in evidence into the trial -- a flagrant discourtesy, as they contain privileged materials -- on which her experts were therefore not cross-examined.

On page 341 comes another Richard Evans lie, as he writes that I served the writ on Lipstadt and her publisher to force them "to pay a substantial sum of money in damages and costs." Lipstadt has parroted the same lie around her lecture circuits.

In fact, as Evans knew, long before the action began I wrote to Penguin Books Ltd on Sept 18, 1998, offering to release them from the action, at no cost, and just before the trial began I also offered to Lipstadt and Penguin to settle the action if the defendants paid the sum of £500 to a charity for the limbless, in memory of my daughter. That was about one hour's pay to one lawyer. And in the final lines of my Closing Address I stated to the Court that in the event that I won I would not ask the defendants for my costs. To folks like Evans, Lipstadt, and the rest, Money is supreme: it bedazzles them to reality, and blinds them to the truth.

Albert SpeerStill, having struck his Faustian bargain with the traditional enemy of the truth, Evans is now regarded as one of the country's leading historians, and his knowledge of Nazi Germany and Adolf Hitler is ranked far above mine: Let's hope for his sake that he is never asked to ad-lib in public on either topic. He is the same Evans who asked to be "reminded" as to who Otto Abetz and Albert Speer (right) were, when questioned in the witness box on his expertise.

He has written subsequently prolifically on the Lipstadt Trial (which he of course calls the Irving Trial, another Freudian revelation) in journals primarily of the Far Left, indeed of the Marxist spectrum-band; he himself appears to be a member of the London Socialist Historians Group, and he is a writer on lesbian rights and on proletarian history under the Nazis, and there are several other obvious pointers to his personal prejudices. In fact he haunts the extreme outer limits of his political beliefs -- so far out that if he were a right-winger even the BNP would probably reject him.

In his book Lying about Hitler, I am told, he has written a lengthy, hilarious, but totally fictitious account of how uproar broke out in the courtroom when I addressed the Judge as "mein Führer" in my closing speech, with Mr Justice Gray repeatedly calling the court to order. The verbatim transcripts provided by the court reporting service reveal nothing of this, nor for that matter did any of the newspapers the next day.


AS EVANS admits in his article, an expert witness is required to swear an oath, and to state in his report that he has written only the truth.

There is more to it than that however: the law also requires that he be unbiased, with no undue feelings about the parties to the action.

After the first three hours of my cross-examination of Evans, his bias and hostility were evident to the entire courtroom, and I asked him to confirm that he had a personal aversion to me, which he denied. He perjured himself -- although he was on oath --, because his true feelings shortly afterwards became apparent in the book that he was writing at the same time; for instance, in the book he stated among other unpleasantries that he and his fellow defence experts had agreed that my presence "defiled" any room that I was in.

In my view, the Richard Evans's of this world defile the otherwise honourable profession that they are in. But my view may be biassed, I admit.


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Global vendetta
[This is the early draft of a publication being prepared on the international campaign mounted to silence to author David Irving since 1989. In its final form it will be longer, illustrated, and have links to key documents on which the narrative is based]

[Download a different and better printed form as a pdf file]
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