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Posted Thursday, March 5, 2009

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Mr Irving plonked himself in the front row, shaking his head vigorously

London, Thursday, March 5, 2009

People: Adam Sherwin

Irving misses the irony and a glass of wine

THERE was no shortage of Sturm und Drang this week when the infamous historian David Irving invited himself to a seminar held at the German Historical Institute in London.

The speaker, Peter Longerich, delivered expert testimony against Mr Irving at the London libel trial, which concluded in 2000 that he was a Holocaust denier and anti-Semitic.

Mr Irving plonked himself in the front row, shaking his head vigorously, as the professor detailed incontrovertible evidence of the Nazi's mass extermination programme in his paper, Himmler and the Holocaust.

However, when Dr Andreas Gestrich, the director of the institute, invited those present for a glass of wine, he said that the hospitality would "not be extended to those that deny the Holocaust". Applause followed, riling Mr Irving, who was sentenced to three years in prison by an Austrian court for Holocaust denial [Website accuracy note: Actually for violating a Stalin-era prohibition on reviving the Nazi Party in a lecture delivered eighteen years earlier].

He began shouting about free speech, the "hypocrisy" that his books were still in the [German Historical Institute] library and claimed that the affair was "a little bit of Germany".

He departed, leaving the irony hanging.    [Uh?].


Ori Golan in The Sydney Morning Herald: Irving tries to enter Israeli market
Longerich refuses to answer David Irving's question about the Schlegelberger Document in his talk in 1998

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