A side trip into a David Irving issue

Published by carolyn on Tue, 2023-06-20 11:43

IT'S NO SECRET that I comment on certain Unz Review articles. Currently there has been another flurry of attention on David Irving as a reliable historian. While I am still organizing my promised article on the present available knowledge of Hitller's role in the Hess "secret" flight to Scotland on May 10, 1941, I came across the comments to Hadding Scott's important aritcle on David Irving found here: https://carolynyeager.net/hadding-scott-talks-frankly-about-david-irving...

There are several good comments there, but one in particular I thought deserved re-publishing as a post. It's by "David," who often wrote  long, thoughtful comments here that I always appreciated. It went like this:

I've read Hadding's 12 page essay and find it fascinating. It took me back to my younger days, when I devoured Irving's books, like so many others, because of his 'revisionist' reputation and his alleged sympathies for the Germans. (You can find free copies of his books for download at white nationalist and racialist sites). But, when you open up one of Irving's books, you find - gassings and shootings of Jews galore. Irving even gives credence to some of the other anti-German atrocity stories, for example, the 'OperationTannenberg' slaughter of 20,000+ Poles by German death squads after 1939. After reading Irving, I became a confused individual: even though I didn't believe in the full Holocaust story, I believed in parts of it - in the so-called 'Rumbula' massacre, for example. I used to tell my friends, 'Okay, the Germans didn't gas the Jews, but they did shoot dead thousands of Jews in pits in Riga'.
Why did I believe? Because, Irving! His books seemed based on a scrupulous analysis of original documents (well, Hadding has exposed that misconception) and also, he has the reputation in the world's media as Revisionist Number One. When you mention Holocaust Revisionism to an educated person, the first thing they say is, 'Oh, that's David Irving, right?'. In my experience, they've never heard of Faurisson, Zündel, Germar Rudolf, Butz...
The other reason I believed is that so much of the rest of Irving's work is good for the German cause. He does a brilliant job, in his book on Rommel, of exposing the treachery of some of the top German generals and their aiding and abetting of the Normandy invasion. He was probably the first historian to tackle the subject of the mass rapes and murders of French women by the Allied soldiers in France (after the Allied invasion at Normandy, Irving writes, French civil disobedience of the German occupiers went down - the Allies made the Germans look good in the eyes of the French).
But, in the end, he'll always be known as a 'Holocaust Revisionist'. These days, I think that the media - and Jewry - have pushed the notion of Irving as the world's foremost Holocaust denier as a means of tricking people. The layman who picks up his books will come away [with]  the impression that 'Holocaust Revisionism' (as epitomised by Irving) doesn't deny the Holocaust, only Hitler's responsibility for it. On their own initiative, the SS gassed and shot millions of Jews, and Hitler didn't know a thing about it.

... Thank you David for sharing so freely your wide reading and experience with us at cy.net.

My post on the Hitler-Hess question re the so-called 'secret peace mission' to Great Britain' is coming soon. I've had a lot going on lately. But it hasn't taken me nearly as long as David Irving's promised book on Himmler which drug on year after year and, when it finally appeared to much fanfare some eight years later, did not contain the promised answer to the true NS culprit responsible for "killing the Jews." It was labeled Book 1, with Book 2 containing these answers to be arriving shortly. That was several years ago; still no sign of Book 2. What a scam. But the true believers will continue to wait upon the Great Man.


All should skim through Hadding Scott's article on the CODOH site that Carolyn linked. After reading, I understand David Irving and his contradictions more than ever before.

Carolyn, in Scott's article he mentions, but only in passing, his suspicion that the Goebbels Diaries were just political propaganda that the Soviets used Irving as an unwitting conduit for transmitting. Do you know of an article that provides evidence of this?

I will pass this on to Hadding Scott and see if he will give you an answer to this, here. I would say, using reasoning, that if it was presented by him as a "passing suspicion," there is unlikely to be EVIDENCE of it. Right?

Normally that would be my thought. But given that Scott's article is entirely about meticulously picking apart some of Irving's more eggragious misuse of sources, and that those Diaries are THE primary source for his book on Goebbels, I would think that Scott wouldn't even make such an astounding claim, even in passing, unless something in his research suggested to him that those Diaries weren't a reliable source. Maybe he felt that proving his suspicions about that particular source would take too long and distract from the main point of his article. But the way he put "Goebbels Diaries" in quotation marks and compared them to the "Eichmann memoirs," which he explicitly argues to be at least partially faked made me think that his fellow revisionist historians might have felt the same way about the Diaries--and maybe one of them did a full length article on the matter.

Hadding has doubted the reliability of the "Goebbels' Diary" for as long as I've known him. I doubt he has anything more than what he's already said, but I asked him. I passed on your first comment.

Ok, thank you very much for that Carolyn.

I received an answer from Hadding Scott. He ssid:

I said all that I knew about it. The Soviet government was notorious for fabricating evidence, like some of the documents used by "nazi-hunters" from the 1970s onward. Just a very untrustworthy source for documents.

That's always been his anwer when I've asked him myself. You can write to him at [email protected] and ask any further questions you have.

I see. Thank you both for taking the time to answer me. Writers such as Irving are in some ways more destructive than pure propagandists such as Anthony Julius. Irving's use of primary sources (often new or neglected ones) provides his readers with much food for thought, but his often flawed interpretation of those sources (likely done for the sake of expediency or political caution) makes reading his works like trying to chew gum and eat almonds at the same time: the two (as with  truth and  falsehood) are so mashed together that you end up either swallowing alot that you shouldn't or you spend so much time trying to separate the parts that after a while you just want to give up, spit the  whole thing out, and find something else to consume. He could have been truly great, if only he'd lived up to his image of himself.

Now I thank YOU for adding your analogy to the almonds & chewing gum. Very good! I couldn't agree with you more. Is David Irving another "tragic hero" for the Right? They just don't want to see and understand the tragic part. It's not his personal tragedy, but the tragedy for Truth for Germany that counts. He betrayed that.