David Irving[Photoby Michael Hentz, for
The New York Times]
HISTORIANS are already at the mercy of governments which arbitrarily decide whichfiles shall be released and which retained ad in nitum (among the latter: Anthony Eden's entirefile on Japan; the transcripts of Rudolf Hess's conversations, and of Winston Churchill's wartime telephone consultations with Franklin Roosevelt). It is quite wrong that when a man like Tolstoy succeeds in painstakinglyfilling in the gaps from other sources, he should be at the mercy of afickle old boys' network - - whether it be of masons or ministers, Old Wykehamists or Conservative Party of cials or whatever - - which secretly conspires to hound him to ruination. In this case there has been a demonstrable attempt to pervert the course of justice, and there must be a criminal inquiry into who abetted it. The PRO keeps the most excellent computerised records of all who draw on its resources, so it should not take too long to get to the bottom of this scandalous affair. It must not be that the guilty parties, without a murmur of embarrassment or regret, merely shrug their shoulders, close ranks, cover their tracks, and get away with it like this.