The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david//eichmann/eichmann-memoirs-found

Archive/File: pub/people/i/irving.david/eichmann eichmann-memoirs-found
Last-modified: 1993/04/08


    Controversial historian got papers from a friend of the war criminal

    LONDON (Reuters)-A controversial British historian said yesterday that he
had found the memoirs of war criminal Adolf Eichmann, 50 years after Eichmann
helped organize the mass slaughter of Jews in Nazi Germany.

    David Irving, who has caused a storm in Germany and Britain by arguing that
the Holocaust took place without Adolf Hitler's knowledge, said he had sent
the original 1,000 page document to the German Federal Archive in Koblenz and
was confident it was genuine.

    It's "an extraordinary heap of documents, beautiful material," Irving told
Sky television.

    The Observer newspaper said the authenticity of the memoirs was bound to
be questioned after the 1983 publication in Germany and Britain of the
purported diaries of Hitler.  The Hitler diaries were quickly exposed as fake.

    Irving said he was given the papers by a friend of the Eichmann family
during a lecture tour of Argentina.

    Eichmann, who was put in charge of organizing the Holocaust, was arrested
by allied forces after World War II but escaped.  He lived in hiding in Argen-
tina until his kidnaping by Israeli agents in 1960 and subsequent trial and
execution in Israel.

    Irving claimed his discovery in the runup to the 50th anniversary of the
Jan. 20, 1942 Wannsee Conference outside Berlin which laid the foundations
for the Nazi "Final Solution".

    He told Sky the memoirs contained a direct reference to a personal order
from Hitler to destroy the Jews.  The Observer quoted the historian as saying
he might have to revise his views about Hitler as a result.

    Irving said the Eichmann family had given the memoirs, probably written
in the 1950s, to a friend after his kidnaping.

    "The Eichmann family was panic-stricken that their house would be raided
and these papers that they knew that Adolf Eichmann had been writing would in-
criminate them," he said.

    Irving said Eichmann recalled in the memoirs how he witnessed the mass
shooting of 200 Jews on the Eastern front.  A mother among them held out her
baby son and pleaded for mercy but both were shot and Eichmann's driver had
to help him clean his brains-spattered leather greatcoat.

    "I stepped forward to rescue the child because I have children of my own,"
Irving quoted Eichmann as writing. ("Der Gauleiter," Houston: April 1993 #214, Robert J. Treend, publisher) 

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