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Posted Thursday, September 13, 2007

Rudolf Hess was put on hold. Saddam Hussein was. Nelson Mandela, John Bunyan, Mark Twain... Evidently passionate beliefs are not enough in the free-thinking world of British university academia.
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September 5, 2007 (Wednesday)

UP at 6:30 a.m., and resume unpacking in our new home.

Jessica arrivesI find a tin containing wonderful photos from the earliest days with Jessica, including the photos we took as B. came upstairs in Duke Street in December 1993, carrying the new-born Jessica.

I have been told that a Gerald Gable affidavit reveals that Peter M. is an agent of the Board of Deputies of British Jews and of MI5, a thoroughly nasty piece of work, who latched on to Lady Birdwood in her last days. I send a consequent warning to my Coventry organiser, adding: "Unfortunately M. ... will have been sent one of the 104 letters. He must NOT be given the meeting location therefore if he turns up at the meeting point."

At 5:11 p.m. I read an e-mail from Andrew Mackenzie, President of the European Society at the University of St Andrews: "I am writing to invite you to come and speak about the holocaust and Adolf Hitler at the University."

(Well, yes, I am something of an expert on both now.) He continues:

I believe it is important for an academic institution to consider alternative and controversial viewpoints, and so I am very keen for you to come and share your views. I hope we will be able to arrange an event and I look forward to hearing from you.

I reply: "I will be happy to come and talk. Let's arrange a date soon."

John Stamat writes from Australia:

You got a mention on a program here called "Media Watch" on our ABC channel 2 television station.

The comment was that the "History Channel" keeps on playing WW2 war documentaries. It was stated that the narrator made Hitler out to be the world's most popular politician and a brilliant military strategist and so on. The program commentator then reveals that "the narrator was none other than David Irving, the controversial historian that is banned from coming here" (Australia). You have set great fear into these narrow minded morons who do not want historical facts revealed. I can imagine how you must feel.


September 7, 2007 (Friday)

I WRITE to Mackenzie at St Andrews: "You may need some backup material, and I am enclosing a few papers which you can use as you see fit. Visit my website for a bunch of useful quotes, what the experts have written about my writings."

What a big house this is. Acres of floor space and cupboards. I must not lose it. Another chat with John the under-gardener; he speaks hoarsely -- he had an operation for throat cancer three years ago, and looks a bit gaunt but recovered.

A friend writes with more low-down on Peter M.:

He did have Lady B "sectioned" [under the Mental Health Act]. We eventually managed to visit her in the 'Home'. He took charge of her during the time we discovered she was being given massive doses of Thorizine which the Formulary says is unsuitable for people with osteoporosis, which she had badly. A nurse said it was to calm her down because she was violent and had hit a man! She died shortly afterwards. I asked the Coroner for an Inquest but he refused without a doctor's certificate which I could not get as a non-relative. M. also managed to convince Barclays Bank that he was her sole Executor and not I, one of the two she had named. As a result, he and [three others] shared her legacy between themselves.


September 8, 2007 (Saturday)

SLEEP out here is very good. Different air from the West End perhaps?

I write to Alexander Mackenzie at St Andrews: "I have mailed to you a package of stuff you may be able to put to good use if your invitation raises eyebrows. Please let us firm up a date soon, as my timetable rapidly fills."

One of the messages last night was from [another University] Union, inviting me (yet again) to speak.

The debate would be centred around the idea of free speech and your controversial and outspoken stance, and the legal result of that stance, make you an ideal contributor to the discussion... We assure you that the debate will not only go ahead, but that it will be very well attended and one of the highlights of our Michaelmas termcard.

I reply:

Could not think straight last night; I was in Rugby speaking to a small but appreciative audience there. Now I am back down in Windsor, in the home I moved into on Monday. Empty and full Pickford's boxes everywhere. I can guarantee that if you get your Free Speech debate off the ground, I will bring in one of your best audiences of the year.

Depends how you play it. When Robert Harris ("Fatherland,"Enigma" etc.) was at Cambridge [in 1977], I gave him an audience of a thousand (he was chairman of the Fabian Society).

It is [two agencies] who are most likely to throw a spanner in your works. What date have you in mind, so I can pencil it into my timetable? It fills quite rapidly over the months ahead. I will mail some stuff today, ammunition to use in case the plans raise hackles.


September 9, 2007 (Sunday)
Windsor - London - Windsor (England)

The lovely NIgella Lawson, in the pinkAT midday I drive into London, taking with me a tall, three headed tea-rose from our Windsor garden. Nobody answers the doorbell at Sloane Street. I have no mobile phone, so cannot call. From Duke Street -- one of the two phone boxes has been dismantled and removed, and all the parking meters now exchanged for "pay by phone" systems -- I phone Jessica. She is already on her way over. She joins me for lunch half an hour later. She is beginning to look very much the young lady, just like her troublesome mama.

A very pleasant Sunday lunch with my daughter; she takes my Independent from me, reads aloud from it and comments on the stories she comes across, most intelligently. She has written an essay on a John Steinbeck novel, she says, and quotes passages from memory; I am quietly impressed. She's in the same class at school as both Mimi, the daughter of Nigella Lawson (right, in the pink), and Charlotte Johnson, Boris's niece.



September 10, 2007 (Monday)
Windsor (England)

A CORRESPONDENT sends me a French translation of an August 24 item from the Viennese newspaper Der Standard. It reports that the Austrian government has arrested the 56-year-old engineer "Wolfgang F.", on suspicion of "Reactivation" under the quaint Stalin-era Banning Act which they used to imprison me in 2005.

Since F. is being charged under section 3(h) of the Act, he can expect a sentence on conviction of up to twenty years or even a life sentence, as a particularly obstinate re-offender. His real crime is that he was preparing a formal complaint about Austria to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, protesting at the Act and in particular its infamous section 3(h). Austria has avoided the embarrassment of being found guilty by the U.N., by ... using the Act to silence him.

I might mention that while incarcerated in the same ancient and overcrowded Viennese prison, I encountered Wolfgang Fröhlich several times, as he was serving his second jail sentence for the same offence; our paths briefly crossed in the holding tank, we shook hands, and he provided me with clippings on my own confinement. Then my own capable lawyer Dr Herbert Schaller won an appeal for him, and he was gone. Now he is back behind the same grim walls.


HISTORY repeats itself. From the University of St Andrews, Andrew Mackenzie at first inquires what dates will suit me, then a couple of hours later e-mails the brush-off that I have been expecting.

Here is the brief-lived sequence:

Yesterday Mackenzie wrote me: "I apologise for the delay in replying. We're currently waiting for word back from Reservations re room availability before we plan dates for the coming year. Is there a point in the coming months that is most convenient ...?

Hear David Irving speak in British cities. Register interest 
Next city Coventry, Sept 21st, buffet and talk, 7-10 pm

I reply that the other University I mentioned have just fixed a date, November 23: "I can make most other dates you suggest."

But then I find another email has come from him during the afternoon at 5 pm:

The University has raised concerns with me regarding the event, particularly security and use of their property, so unfortunately I will have to put my invitation on hold for the time being.

I still passionately believe all views have a right to be heard, and so very much appreciate your contact thus far and apologise for any inconvenience caused.

"Put on hold". That is student-speak for cancelled, vanished without trace, disappeared. Rudolf Hess was put on hold. Saddam Hussein was. Nelson Mandela, John Bunyan, Mark Twain... Evidently passionate beliefs are not enough in the free-thinking world of British university academia.

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