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 Posted Sunday, March 7, 1999

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The Observer

London, January 17, 1993



'Hitler' is an export success

AS THE publisher of David Irving's biography Hitler's War, may we take this opportunity to correct some serious errors in an article by Chaim Bermant (2 August).

Mr Bermant wrote: 'He had just produced an updated version of his book on Hitler's War at his own expense. He had to sell it himself because no British publisher would handle it. Most bookshops were reluctant to stock it, and the hallway of his Mayfair flat was stacked high with hundreds, perhaps even thousands of unsold copies.'

In fact, Hitler's War is a most successful publication: over 400 bookshops in the UK have stocked it, and only six declined. The book's earlier edition, published by Macmillan, is still in print.*

British publishers were deemed incapable of producing the new edition, which has 50 colour photographs, at an economic price. The identical new edition is on sale in the United States and in Italy, published by well-known publishers.** Not one penny of Mr Irving's money has gone into our production. And those stacks of books have long gone and other stacks like them -- a great British export success.

John Moffat,
Focal Point Publications.


The Observer accepts that some, rather than most, leading booksellers were reluctant to stock the revised edition, contrary to the impression given by Mr Bermant's article.


The Observer was obliged by Mr Irving's lawyers Biddle & Co to publish the above letter and footnote in a settlement. For correspondence in this matter see the Index to Mr Irving's libel action vs. The Observer (Guardian Newspapers Ltd) and Gitta Sereny, 1996.

Hitler's War * This was an error. In fact on July 6, 1992 Macmillan's had secretly ordered the destruction of its entire stock of the book Hitler's War, under pressure from the Jewish community. Macmillan's had not informed Mr Irving or the publishers from whom they bought the licence of this deed.

** Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, Mr Irving's publisher since 1963, had purchased the rights from him, and had completed the translation. Under pressure from Italy's Jewish community they annulled the contract without informing Mr Irving.

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