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WineCape

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    One more dance along the razor's edge finished. Almost dead yesterday, maybe dead tomorrow, but alive, gloriously alive, today.

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  1. Just finished reading David Irving's 1978 The War Path: Hitler's Germany 1933-9 This book was published after his 1977 Hitler's War - in the USA published by The Viking Press, NY and by Hodder & Stoughton London elsewhere. In the former book's "Author's Foreword," he noted thus, and I quote extensively for the sake of clarity ... Those critics who took exception … in “Hitler’s War” of his [Hitler’s] attitude to the “Jewish question” … particularly in North America – will find his actions in the years before the war were wholly consistent with my central hypothesis: that Hitler grasped quite early on that anti-Semitism would be a powerful vote-catching force in Germany and that he had no compunction against riding that evil horse right up to the portals of the Chancellery in 1933; but that once inside and in power, he “dismounted” and paid only lip-service to that part of his creed. The Nazi gangsters under him continued to ride to hound … even when Hitler dictated differently, e.g. 9 November 1938* * Sidenote: [The anti-Jewish pogrom. Throughout Germany/Austria an orgy of burning and destruction, murder and rape took place on that day. The Fuhrer was at Prinz Regenten Platz at his apartment. At 1am the next morning one of Hitler’s adjutants came upstairs to tell him that the Hotel Vier Jahrezeiten had just telephoned asking the adjutants to retrieve their baggage, as the synagogue next door was on fire and the hotel might have to be evacuated. Julius Schaub – Hitler’s ADC – wrote a graphic account of this night of horror. According to Irving, Hitler sent angrily for SS General Karl von Eberstein, the city’s police chief, and told him to restore order at once. At 2:56 am a telex was issued by Rudolf Hess’s staff as Deputy Fuhrer – repeated to all gauleiters as Party Ordinance #174 – forbidding all such demonstrations: ”On express orders issued at he highest level of all there is to be no arson or the like, whatever, under any circumstances, against Jewish businesses.” The Gestapo followed suit - thus at 3:45am the Berlin Gestapo repeated this prohibition. But the damage had been done, and Ribbentrop left Hitler in no doubt of this. Hitler refused to discipline the instigator Goebbels, nor the Nazi Party members who had actually committed the outrages. Thus – just as on 30 June 1934 – Hitler post facto endorsed the excesses of his henchmen.] Back to Mr. Irving’s Foreword and his assertion … …he [Fuhrer] rarely intervened in the Nazi Party’s persecution of the Jews, one way or the other. Documents that actually link Hitler with the treatment of the Jews invariably take the form of embargoes. Thus we find a senior Reich law officer minuting in the winter of 1941-2: “Reich Minister Lammers informed me that the Fuhrer has repeatedly pronounced that he wants the Jewish Question put off until after the war is over.” Whatever way one looks at his [above] document … it is incompatible with the notion that Hitler wished, ordered or even knew of the liquidation programme that was in fact already under way. (The document, believed destroyed in 1946, has only recently surfaced in a Justice ministry file, R22/52, in the archives in Koblenz.) And if Hitler was an incorrigible anti-Semite, what are we to make of the urgent edict issued by Rudolf Hess… during the infamous Night of the Broken Glass… Every other historian, even if he found this document (which is in the Berlin files), has shut his eyes to it and documents like it, and hoped that when he opened his eyes the horrid, inconvenient item would have somehow gone away. And now the crux of his argument … [Historians] have resorted to postulating the existence of Fuhrer orders even if there was not the slightest written evidence of their existence. John Toland… appealed emotionally in the magazine Der Spiegel for German historians to refute my statement that Hitler did not order the systematic liquidation of the European Jews, and was probably not even aware that it was going on…apart from [German historians] suggesting that “of course” the whole project was so secret that only oral orders were issued, so as to not implicate the Fuhrer. But why should Hitler have become so circumspect in this instance, since in contrast he had shown no compunction about personally signing a blanket order for the liquidation on tens of thousands of fellow Germans (the Euthanasia Programme); and his comparable orders for the liquidation of enemy prisoners (the Commando Order), of Allied airmen (the Lynch Order) and Russian functionaries (the Commissar Order) are documented all the way from Fuhrer’s HQ’s right down the line to the executioners? Jews did not rank higher than any of these in popularity in Nazi Germany. To buttress such hostile arguments, other writers have relied on weak and unprofessional evidence…. For example, they offered shrewd alternative translations of words in Hitler’s speeches – apparently the liquidation was too secret for him to sign an order, but not so secret the Hitler could not brag about it in his public speeches! – and seemingly damning quotations from documents that have, however, long been discarded by serious historians as fakes, like the Gerstein Report or the Bunker conversations. ..but explicit, written, wartime evidence, the kind of evidence that could hang a man, not one line has been produced. Thus, to sum up, Mr. Irving states that though Hitler probably was an anti-Semite - as deduced from his many public recorded hate speeches against the Jews before WWII - there is no written wartime evidence (yet?) of any Jewish liquidation order. My questions is thus: [1] Is this true? Is there no written wartime evidence - since this book was written in 1978 - of Hitler’s “edicts” ordering explicitly the destruction of the Jews? [2] And if there is, is these “guilty evidence” sources fakes & discredited as Mr. Irving so sweepingly claims? [3] Stating that Hitler did not know of the Jewish liquidation seems improbable and far-fetched IMHO, even if there was no written execution orders by him? [ April 01, 2005, 02:20 AM: Message edited by: WineCape ]
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