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Posted Friday, June 30, 2000

I can only hope they didn't have to drag those huge slabs up here along the A.303.

[Previous Radical's Diary]

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Monday, June 14, 2010
Windsor (England)

MICHELE Renouf sends me a news item: "Psychiatrist of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Commits Suicide." I reply: "Too good to be true, Michele. I suspect a spoof story, which only the fringe media and rightwingers have picked up."


Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Windsor (England)

Michele Renouf agrees with my assessment. "Yep That's what I thought too. . . Yet the concepts are true enough."

Jaenelle reports: "They [Lightning Source, our US printers] claim it is not their responsibility to replace books." They have shipped to us a dozen cases of my books, The War Between the Generals, so poorly packaged that they arrived damaged beyond repair.

I respond: "Write them a sternly worded reply:

It is true that you offer customers basic shipping as an alternative, but it is your company's cheap, shoddy and inadequate packaging which it as fault, not the shipping method. Quite apart from the importance of customer goodwill, you have in law a duty of care, which requires that you package the products adequately. Although we had repeatedly drawn the attention of your company to your failures in this respect, with scores of books arriving damaged and unsaleable, and you undertook to investigate the matter, you continued to use the wrong packaging. The packaging used by your company was quite inadequate for the shipment of books by any medium, whether basic or otherwise. Your negligence has caused us substantial direct losses.

Discussions with Jaenelle during the drive to London and back for dinner with Jessica: how to boost sales. Enough visitors are found to be browsing in our online bookstore, usually twenty at any one time, but this is not converting into better sales. May be it is just the summer lethargy. -- Jessica is in mid exams, and very impressive too. Her knowledge of Twentieth Century history greatly exceeds mine, in parts.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Windsor (England)

I WRITE to K., an expert on the Alfred Franke-Griksch report:

We will commune on the mystery created by the Lipman document. It is surely a fake. [Eric M] Lipman did however exist, and refused to hound [Rudolf] Hess after finding from his family documents that he was a decent guy (see my Hess book).

Could his document have been a Geheime Reichssache appendix? I doubt it. (a) Surely he [Lipman] would then have titled it accordingly. (b) the rest of the papers show there was nothing explicit in the document about exterminations, only implicit "hints".

Lipman certainly got very rich after the war. Japanese-Architect designed house in Richmond Va., etc.


Thursday, June 17, 2010
Windsor (England)

THE expert, K., sends me his comments on the Franke-Griksch document mystery, and at 9 a.m. I reply:

I have now typed up the remaining documents of relevance in the file.

2. Are you familiar with the 1945 Herff diary? It begins just before his capture. His daughter made a transcript available to me, which I have corrected (e.g., Graf Pohl becomes Gruf.)

I am baffled by the whole thing. Was Lipman such a liar?

His reply:

I am not so baffled by the report since it is clear that whatever Lipman produced is inauthentic.
Thanks to you, we now know that this other version is authentic. We also know something about the provenance. It was found in General Herff's papers. It was being passed around by the Brits already in May, 1945. There were limited copies. There was a German original, which has disappeared.
My guess is that somewhere in the summer of 1945, and because the document referenced Auschwitz, the original was passed on to be accessioned for trial purposes. Perhaps it received an "L" number. Perhaps it was sent to Paris to be accessioned in the PS group, or Nuremberg for the NO group. Perhaps the document was going to be used in the Belsen trial, which started in September of 1945, and which was in effect another Auschwitz trial.
And then someone actually read the document. Aktion Reinhardt described as a plunder operation. "The Jews know they have nothing to fear so long as they can work." A camp, Poniatowa, having more prisoners than Auschwitz. Deportees from the Warsaw Ghetto uprising sitting around in suits at campfires in Poniatowa. This document did not help. So, it disappeared.
At this point one of two things happened. Either some German, like say, Eugen Kogon, fabricated a German language document that fell into Lipman's hands, or Lipman himself faked the document. It doesn't particularly concern me which. I mention Kogon because I recently read that as a prisoner in Buchenwald he worked in the office and typed correspondence. He faked a medical diary for one of the doctors there. How many camps had savvy prisoners with access to letterhead, SS rune typewriters, and sufficient inside knowledge to write whatever they pleased?
One thing is certain. The Lipman document is a fake, because:
1. It presents itself as an extract from a longer report, but we now have the longer report and there's no way to fit this extermination narrative into it.
2. The longer report fell into British hands very early in the game, probably just weeks after Herff was taken prisoner. There's no room here for a secret codicil about exterminations to have disappeared.
3. Moreover, a discussion of how Jews were being killed would be completely outside the tenor of this report. There is no context for including it, and no reason to include it. The diary is about inspecting SS arrangements in Poland, along with recommendations for improvements. There is not one word about Jewish resettlement, euphemism or no, nor any indication that it is even on the priority list.
4. The Lipman report has all the earmarks of crude forgery (the/die issues) and is inherently nonsensical.
5. Herff had the report in his possession, and it was written for his benefit. Yet Herff showed no comprehension about the extermination camps in the diary extracts I have seen (and which you posted and which I consulted earlier this year.)
So what you have accomplished is to:
  • -- authenticate a report, and provide the surrounding context, that refutes Lipman's version completely, and
  • -- provides a document that gives a good glimpse of how the SS actually regarded what they were doing in Poland, and
  • -- provides important evidence about the treatment of Polish Jews in the context of Aktion Reinhardt, Globocnik, Hoefle, Korherr and Jewish forced labor.

As for the surrounding context, I comment: "Yes, the all-important Paper Trail that is missing from the Lipman version."


Saturday, June 19, 2010
Windsor (England)

WE have devised an online customer feedback form, and send it out to our first fifty bookstore customers. The response is very favourable and far more voluminous than I would have expected [eventually over half reply].

The two J's go shopping for summer clothes in Windsor all afternoon. Trouble brewing on the school-bill front however unless I can whistle up ten thousand pounds by August.


Sunday, June 20, 2010
Windsor (England)

JAENELLE tells me: "... Arthur Kemp mentions you in his blog: See Section 6, third paragraph."

I can't be bothered to read it. What have I done to upset Kemp, an accomplice to the murder of Chris Hani, other than expose him as a probable agent of some kind?


Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Windsor (England)

THE GARAGE reports that the new key for our very old car will cost not £35 but £98. Citroen have to issue the code for the transponder, and the garage has to check it. It is legalized blackmail. The car is ten years old, for God's sake. In effect they say, we hold the code that unlocks your car and will not let you use the car again unless you pay, uh, x pounds.

Jaenelle phones the Citroen headquarters to check that the garage is not ripping us off. Lady there says diffidently that some Citroen "keys" -- sniff -- can cost up to £800 to replace. A nice little racket, by the sound of it. Not one they advertise widely when getting you to buy their products, I bet. Rather like Canon's "your perfectly good printer's waste disposal tank is full, throw it away -- NOW!" racket. Whatever happened to customer good-will?


Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Windsor (England)

JESSICA texts ... The Danish embassy has still not got her passport ready, and she is getting nervous. People are now paying their Wolfs Lair registrations in full to qualify for the modest discount we offer


Thursday, June 24, 2010
Windsor -- Southampton (England)

A stranger writes: "Dear Mr. Irving

If you are David Irving the historian, I'd like to notify you that the man who hit you with his bag on the Eurostar at some point during the autumn of 2008 is called Richard Barrett. He is a 'composer' (I use the term loosely), currently based in Berlin.

I know that it was him, not because I was there at the time, but because he later went online to brag about the incident on a music forum of which I am also a member.

I am sorry if you were inconvenienced by this episode and if you can make use of this information, I wish you all the best.

Wikipedia reveals the mystery assailant as a "Richard Barrett (born 7 November 1959, Swansea, Wales), a British composer." I have no memory whatsoever of the episode, if indeed it ever happened. I reply: "Not sure when this Eurostar episode was. I only ever used it once, in May or June 2007, to Brussels and back, which kind of narrows it down. That was soon after my release from solitary confinement in Vienna, and this may have irritated him." On the other hand, Barrett may have handbagged some perfectly innocent stranger who looked like me.

I write to Jutta -- who worked with me on the Rommel biography in the 1970s:

Can you transcribe a German interview for me?. SS General Karl Wolff (Himmler's chief aide) talking in Chile with an old Nazi about wartime events. It is stereo and very clear.


WE REACH the Southampton inn at 5:45pm. It is a good meeting room, and we shall use it again. Jaenelle conceals her stuffiness in a flaming-orange summer dress which has at least two of the men hovering mothlike around her, unaware of the flamethrower she can turn into when provoked. The talk goes well after a difficult start as she is conducting a loud conversation with two guests at the back of the room and twice ignores my injunctions that she should stop. She does not realize how penetrating her voice is and the fact that as an American she speaks several decibels more loudly than the average Englishman. Hey ho.

William W-M reminisces afterwards about his friend Count Nikolai Tolstoy; during my libel action against Deborah Lipstadt Tolstoy had remarked on the strange coincidence that it was Richard Rampton QC who was defending her, with Sir Charles Gray as trial judge; Rampton had been Tolstoy's own "ineffectual" barrister in the Aldington case, while Gray was the QC who acted for the plaintiff, the former army general Lord Aldington, an alumnus of Winchester College: "The latter is a slimy Wykehamist liar of the worst type." Lawyers, remarked Tolstoy, do not understand history, and have no business pronouncing on it.

I reply that it was only years after the Lipstadt trial that I learned that, as Tolstoy had said, in the libel action again him Richard Rampton QC had acted for him, and Gray for theplaintiff, while Gray's junior there was the barrister Heather Rogers. In the Lipstadt trial, where Gray J presided, I faced Rampton and -- Rogers, as Rampton's junior. Hey-ho. It is a small legal world indeed, one in which everybody knows everybody, chaps, and the devil take the outsider.

We drive off around 10:15 pm looking for a hotel. Eventually we check into rooms at a Premier Inn. I joke with the staff that I hope that Lenny Henry has not been bouncing up and down on the beds here -- the TV advert shows the big fat adulterous Black comedian promoting the Premier Inn chain; the all-White staff here chuckle knowingly. There are suspicious stains on my bed's livery-purple cover; but perhaps I have just been watching too much "CSI". Last time we shall choose a Premier Inn.

Friday, June 25, 2010
Southampton -- Exeter (England)

JAENELLE finally gets the U.K. Vodafone stick working and goes online. She finds at once that she cannot access many websites, or even mine -- "CONTENT CONTROL" is activated by default and cannot be switched off by Vodafone. That's charming. You pay for a service, and then find that the faceless censors of whom George Orwell once warned have quietly switched things off. Or is it just Vodafone trying to pprevent customers from consuming all the gigabytes they have paid for?

You are not able to access this service because Content Control is in place.
If you're 18 years or over, you can remove Content Control by contacting your mobile service provider's customer support team.


I OFFER to make a detour off the M27 highway for Jaenelle to have a look at Stonehenge. The A.303 has traffic moving at rather less, shall we say, than the speed of a Lee-Enfield rifle bullet. The highway clogs repeatedly as it changes from dual carriageway to single lane and back again, causing immense back-ups,

The Stonehenge site, controlled by the government's English Heritage, is a welcome relief. I introduce the stone slabs to Jaenelle, from Minnesota, born some five or six thousand years after their erection; and who knows for sure how the ancient Brits achieved that feat? I can only hope they didn't have to drag those huge slabs up here along the A.303.

There must be a thousand tourists from all over the world when we arrive, scattered like ants around the whole imposing structure, which stands on a bare hillside. It cries out for some gloomy Russian composer to provide the requisite musical backdrop.

Pi symbol at StonehengeTo somebody coming from the United States, where highway signs routinely direct tourists to "historic quarters" with buildings that are sometimes fifty or even sixty years old, the site must seem awesome, mystical, and baffling.

I have always had a supicion, I tell Jaenelle, that the huge trilyths -- each keyed and morticed stone block hoisted on top of two others to form this sinister circle -- are an early attempt by ancient Brits to calculate a value of Pi -- π. Perhaps she is unfamiliar with the outline of the Greek character; at any rate my English wit is wasted on her.

Perhaps the circle is a memorial to an ancient holocaust in which unnamed newcomers wiped out the ancient Brits, a civilisation which had already once invented the steam engine, the jet engine, supersonic airliners, centimetric radar, computers, derivatives, and discovered nuclear fission, penicillin and DNA, and all our other great national achievements, obliging us weary Brits us to do it all over again in more recent centuries; only to have our country swamped by even more recent "Brits" who may well repeat the process of degeneration and decay ad infinitum.

Talking of which, Black faces are hardly to be seen here in the south-west; there are however many parties of eager Asians from the Far East, whose impressive civilizations go back even further than our own.

In fact as our onward journey heads further southwest into the toe of England, the incidence of Blacks dwindles almost entirely, until I am back in the England of my childhood, and I feel comfortable again.

It is a small first meeting in Exeter, with twelve or fifteen crammed into the pub's upstairs room.

The Travelodge hotel afterwards is sparse to say the least. There is no room phone, but it has a beer-bottle opener screwed to the table. The cupboard is two chipboard planks screwed to a wall. The beds are the narrowest I have seen since the jail cell in Vienna and the mattresses are noisy, hard, and lumpy -- they appear to be nearly hollow or stuffed with thick straw. One languid half-roll one way or the other will tip its occupant onto the floor. There is one tablet of soap, the size and thickness of a large postage stamp, but no shampoo or the other customary hotel accessories.

All this for a price which would have rented a whole suite in the Embassy Suites or Staybridge Suites chain in the USA, and even this was thirty pounds less than the Holiday Inn Express we tried first this evening. -- The further difference being that at the US hotels you get a full cooked breakfast included, while here the Travelodge breakfast would be a "breakfast bag" for an addition £4.50 person containing less than the average airline meal.


Saturday June 26, 2010
Exeter -- Bristol -- Windsor (England)

David Irving signing books in BristolWE HAVE moved today's little function from Bath to Bristol. After a few hours writing at a local Costa's (I am completing the transcription of Hitler-secretary Christa Schroeder's letters for the website), we set out for Bristol at three pm. There are three children including one very young boy who listens attentively throughout -- what a joy to see, and I trim and soften the content of my talk downwards accordingly.

I sign a lot of books. I wish I could advertise these events more widely, but that would only bring in the bovver-boys.

I have decided we can spend tonight back home in Windsor, and save the exorbitant hotel costs. The return journey gets off to a bad start; I foolishly ask Jaenelle to guide me out of the stone-flagged exit passage from the ancient inn. -- "Never ask a woman to do that!" shouts a wise man passing by, as Jaenelle calls out, "You're fine now!" and her words are drowned in the crunch of metal on stone. The Pigmobile's left sill has slithered diagonally into a low stone bollard, erected there centuries earlier to prevent coach wheels hitting the wall.

The Citroen grinds to a halt. I am furious. "I didn't see that down there," she says in a matter-of-fact voice, without a trace of apology.[. . .]


Sunday, June 27, 2010
Windsor -- Cheltenham (England)

I DRIVE out to Cheltenham. The last stages of the journey are hair-raising as the sat-nav plunges me off the main six lane highway onto an unmarked,unnamed lane and for three miles I find myself churning along a narrow lane at the edge of a field, literally, with a hedge on the right-hand side, and the wheels running almost on each verge. Suppose I had been a truck? Or had met a vehicle coming the other way? Then steep hills and climbs and descents, through beautiful sunlit countryside.

In Cheltenham mild disaster strikes. I park in Cambray Place where callous drunken crowds are celebrating Britain's final defeat in the World Cup football tournament by Germany; I kill time with half a pint, and wander back to the car; I chat with two White cops in a large police van, which slowly trundles after and then alongside me.

I put the defective new key in the ignition to run the fan while I check the route to the Brown Jug. When I then try to start the engine with the proper key, the system is immobilized however -- has the new key scrambled the transponder system? Nothing will start the Citroen. I phone Jaenelle and tell her the problem; it may mean my staying overnight here.

The cops wander over to me on foot now, tap on the window, and address me by name: "Everything okay, Mr Irving?" I am nonplussed. They say they ran the licence tag through the computer. (Why? The Citroen is fully taxed and insured). I explain the key-problem, which sounds very odd. (Later, I wonder if they have somehow triggered my immobilizer: police in some countries have an electronic device that does this. It does not stop the engine, but prevents you restarting it).

They offer to drive me to the Brown Jug, and carry the books for me. With me in their front seat, they take the opportunity for a friendly chat -- what am I doing in Cheltenham, why am I here, how long have I been in the town; smiling, I tell them of the last time I was in a police car -- in Austria in 2005, manacled, after being arrested at gunpoint for a lecture I gave sixteen years before.

As I am talking, the second officer gets a call on his radio, evidently about moi, because I hear him quietly respond, "Not now, I'll tell you shortly" -- or words to that effect, evidently something which they don't want me, a taxpaying and law-abiding citizen, to hear. And all of this in Cheltenham: genteel, White, elegant, Regency-style Cheltenham, home of GCHQ.

The Brown Jug is vibrant and noisy with inebriated and shrieking women. Fortunately, when I am back at my transport two hours later the key works first time, after one brief flicker of the "immobilized" lamp. I am back at the house in Windsor at ten-thirty on the dot. Worrying, and annoying. But bookings for this September's Wolf's Lair tour are coming in well, and we are nearly up to our present limit of a dozen participants.


[Previous Radical's Diary]  


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