David Irving: Historian discuss the Holocaust at Bletchley Park

Historians in the News

HISTORIANS gathered to discuss whether Second World War codebreakers knew of the holocaust included one who has been accused of denying there was a holocaust.

Among the guests at a Bletchley Park lecture given by author and journalist Michael Smith on Thursday night was David Irving.

Mr Irving first came to prominence as the historian who wrote a book on the destruction of Dresden He wrote many more novels and was the first historian to challenge the authenticity of the 'Hitler Diaries'.

His fame turned to notoriety as he challenged the facts of the holocaust and displayed sympathy for Hitler and the Nazis.

In a book called Hitler's War, he said Hitler had never ordered the mass extermination of Jews and as was unaware of it until late 1943.

In 2005 he was jailed in Austria after pleading guilty to the charge that he had said the Holocaust never took place but said he had no other course of action and has always denied he is a holocaust denier.

On Thursday Mr Smith, who among other books, has written Station X - The Codebreakers of Bletchley Park, asked if the codebreakers ignored mass murder.

Mr Smith pointed out the codebreakers were aware that the German army was systematically killing Jewish people and that Churchill was kept informed.

Winston Churchill described this activity on radio as a 'crime without a name'....

After the meeting, the reporter asked Mr Irving about his views on the document and the holocaust.

Mr Irving said he has to be careful what he says as free speech is under threat and he was nearly jailed for 20 years in Austria.

{HNN Editor: Commenting on her blog, Deborah Lipstadt said:"Irving's claim that he had 'to be careful' is ridiculous and an attempt to cast himself as a martyr. No one can prosecute him for what he says in England.]
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