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[verbatim trial transcripts]

February 2, 2000 (Wednesday)


I work until 2 a.m. preparing for today's hearing.

Up at 5 a.m.; the fax machine is overflowing with press clippings from today's Australian newspapers. Then taxi to the Australian Channel 9 television studios at 6 a.m. The Times has a loaded article, headlining the fact that Rampton had (yet again) called me a liar over Dresden figures. Sigh: that's the way the journaille works. Striking viciously when they are "privileged" to do so by the rules of court. By satellite, I broadcast a fifteen minute interview segment for A Current Affair in Australia, about the trial, daughter Beatrice, Prime Minister John Howard (I say I can not imagine why I am not allowed to enter, perhaps it's the way I hold my pen). The interviewer asks if I have said it was "dreadful," as newspapers report, that Beatrice has become an Australian citizen, and I laugh out loud. I do what I can to protect her from criticism, though. Told that Howard says that despite my having an Australian daughter he will still not let me enter, I say that this is bad news for millions of Australians who have always imagined that their English next of kin have an automatic right of entry, and who now find that a prime minister whose party has sold out to wealthy private interests thinks he can trample on the law. "He will have to change the law for a second time to keep me out this time," I say.

At 7:45-55 AM I phone Götz Bergander in Berlin. First time for about twenty years - he's still at the same phone number. He confirms that the late Herr Ehlich gave him a copy of the Dresden Tagesbefehl No. 47, which he had copied from police records; but he had also copied the fake one, so it is not impossible that Ehlich just cut off again the zeroes which the fakers had added on. I remark how odd it is that no other genuine versions have survived.

At the High Court from 10:30 to 4:30 p.m., during which I am in the witness stand except for the first half hour, when defence counsel Mr Rampton again puts Professor van Pelt into the box. Together they try to repair the damage done to the June 1943 crematoria-capacities document. Pelt has brought along ten documents from his portable collection to show various features: I now concede that the periods (i.e. full-stops) issue is unimportant, but I remain firm on the missing year "/43/", the unknown secretary "/Ne.", the typed Brieftagebuchnummer, and the wrong (incomplete) rank for Dr Ing Hans Kammler (whose proper rank as a Generalmajor der Waffen SS is fortuitously given in full on the last of the ten new items. I also add the question, "Is the serial number in sequence with other documents of that date, or totally out of sequence?" (I know the answer: it is out of sequence by some weeks.) They are obviously worried about that document, and their action in recalling Pelt today has in fact helped to focus the Judge on its problem value; I repeat that this is the only document in this trial whose integrity I intend to impugn.

For the rest of the morning I am cross examined on an item in the Gerald Fleming book Der Führer und die Endlösung, written in an attempt to refute Hitler's War. I say I have not read it, or - as an afterthought - that I have at most dipped into it in connection with the Bruns document, and that my knowledge of its research etc., comes from reviews I have read by Gordon Craig and Tom Bower.

The morning closes on a heated note as they try to make out that I am a racist. They read out from my private diary the Jessica poems ("I am a baby Aryan/..."). The public gallery is engrossed: I compare it however with Hilaire Belloc and Edward Lear, I remind counsel that Jessica was 9 months old at the time (he claims to have been speaking perfectly at 6 months!) and I say that the slimy Gerald Gable's Searchlight magazine had just published a photograph of Benté, Jessica and me with the sneering caption, "The Perfect Aryan family."

Then, as a killer-line, I say words to this effect: "Mr Rampton, for three or four weeks now His Lordship and I have surveyed the serried ranks of barristers, solicitors, trainees and researchers arrayed on the defence side of the court, and never once have we seen a member of an ethnic minority working for you; whereas, as you know, I have repeatedly employed members of those minorities." There is, I think, appreciation from the public, but the judge to my astonishment loudly reprimands me for the remark. I repeat it, saying that I am surely entitled to draw this comparison; he reprimands me again, and I again repeat it, claiming that it is evidence of the hypocrisy of the defendants and their counsel. At this Judge Gray unfortunately becomes very angry, so I leave it at that. I begin the afternoon therefore with an apology to the judge for having drawn his attention to the fact that leading defence counsel's entire team has never shown one coloured face, unlike my own private staff, and yet they call me a racist.

The afternoon begins with the defence counsel showing of a video of my speech at Tampa in 1995. They want to show only the latter half, with my remarks about Jewish opposition etc; I say that I feel they should show it all, the judge agrees, and for over an hour the entire courtroom listens to a not-bad exposition of the entire revisionist case. There is laughter at several places from the public gallery, which embarrasses me. I have no idea who comes each day. (Today I spoke with Sir Martin Gilbert, and shook his hand - he took mine only with hesitation, as I asked him to confirm that I did send him the Aumeier document. He says he will check. That will certainly be quicker than going through all my files, which are totally dishevelled after their return from the defence lawyers).

From 3 until 4:30 p.m. I am cross examined about that talk and other speeches that I have made. It is an uncomfortable ninety minutes, as I try to explain (a) I have come under concentrated and vicious attack by self-appointed Jewish community leaders for ten or twenty years; (b) that those attacks have frequently been of a despicable nature; (c) that the Jewish community and its self appointed leaders are not immune from criticism; and (d) that such criticism is not antisemitism. - He reads out the episode about Simon Wiesenthal and the Halloween mask, as an example of anti-semitism. I say, on the contrary, the word Jew is not mentioned in the entire passage, so the antisemitism is in his mind, not mine; the whole passage is anti "ugly-ism" - the basis of the anecdote being that an ugly man, not a Jewish man, wore the mask. Nobody, I say, is ever likely to award Wiesenthal a pride for beauty. His Jewishness does not come into it.

The strain of this cross examination is severe, having had so little sleep, and Rampton cheekily suggests I am looking "rattled" (a word the judge orders him to refrain from using), and asks if I would like to end it for the day right there; I reply, "I am game for many more rounds, Mr Rampton: just carry on."

Back at the house at 4:45 p.m. Flat in deepest silence [...]

A fax comes from [solicitors] Davenport, Lyons asking me to provide from my files copies of the Fleming book reviews by Gordon Craig and Tom Bower! I spend hours searching for them.

7:50-56 PM a phone call comes from some female, identifying herself as being from "the school," one of the partners, and saying that certain unidentified parents had objected to my collecting Jessica [...]! I am speechless with rage; after some talk at cross purposes it emerges that this is the new ballet school in Harley Street, where I have so far picked up Jessica only twice! I suggest to the lady that she should tell these "parents" to "push off" or at least firmly invite them to approach me direct with their "concerns" and not through the school like this. The courage of these people! [...].

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