Talk:David Irving

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Good article David Irving has been listed as one of the Social sciences and society good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
News This article has been mentioned by multiple media organizations:

National Alliance[edit]

Although he denied knowingly having spoken at events organised by the anti-semitic National Alliance (United States), he is reported to have spoken at 8 such events and was filmed speaking at at least one.[1]. That was in October 1995 and he denied knowing who had organised the event despite the large National Alliance symbol near him and wasintroduced by someone who "welcomed the audience to a National Alliance event".[2]. Should this be in the article? Dougweller (talk) 10:09, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

An encyclopedia (assuming arguendo that Wikipedia is one) should not be a dumping ground for all facts that can be collected on a subject. Just put in enough facts to establish that Irving is a holocaust denier, serial liar, fraudulent historian, losing plaintiff, and convicted criminal. Drop the rest or shove it off to a sub-page. If someone comes along who complains that Irving is shown in an unduly negative light, point them there.-- (talk) 19:59, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Just FYI[edit]

This paragraph is an accurate summary:

In the first edition, Irving's estimates for deaths in Dresden were between 100,000 and 250,000 – notably higher than most previously published figures.[20] These figures became authoritative and widely accepted in many standard reference works. In later editions of the book over the next three decades, he gradually adjusted the figure downwards to 50,000–100,000.[21]

This is correct. Irving found new sources post facto and revised his book.

This is incorrect:

According to Walter Weidauer, mayor of Dresden from 1946–1958, Irving based his numbers on a falsified document promulgated by Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels, as well as claims made after the war by a former Dresden Nazi functionary, Hanns Voigt, without verifying them against official sources available in Dresden.[24] Irving published a letter to the editor in The Times on 7 July 1966, admitting that the data in his book were not credible.[25]

The source [24] is merely a claim, and [25] does not actually support the claim being made in the article. Irving got new information from Weidauer, publicly announced that he had found new sources not available to him in the first draft of the book, and revised his book in accordance with those new sources.

I'm not going to edit that at all because the bias in that second sentence, which basically looks like "IRVING'S BOOK IS FULL OF LIES AND HE ADMITTED IT!", should cause anyone looking for NPOV to roll their eyes. Shii (tock) 04:26, 31 January 2013 (UTC)

If you read the sources or look for more, there are numerous discussions concerning Dresden and Irving's publications in the early 60's. These are discussed in secondary sources where Weidauer is described as one of Irving's foremost competitors and fiercest critics regading commentaries on the bombing of Dresden. Irving's letter to the Times is mentioned in numerous sources. I watch this page because of periodic edits by Tholzel, a banned user. Removing content without checking for sources is unhelpful. In this case Shii's blanking without checking for sources seems to have been WP:IDONTLIKEIT. Whoever added this content in the first place was presumably a German speaker and someone unfamiliar with formatting references or footnotes. Using capital letters is shouting and quite unhelpful (unless it happened to be an exact quote from a WP:RS). It is unsurprising that a politican such as Weideauer in the GDR immediately after the war should have made outspoken statements of this kind. Apart from the 2010 book published by the University of Amsterdam Press that I added in the notes, these matters are for example discussed by the eminent historian Richard J. Evans in his 2001 book already listed in the bibliography. Evidently the source [25] is about Irving's letter to the Times and the statements from Weidauer's book [24] appear with attribution to Weidauer. The sequence of events is discussed in detail in Evans' book and also here.[3] I have added extra detail to that paragraph. Mathsci (talk) 05:56, 31 January 2013 (UTC)
The revised phrasing is fine with me. Shii (tock) 07:30, 31 January 2013 (UTC)


The wikipedia entry on David Irving begins with a blatant ad hominem libel. I can call you a "dumb shit" on one of these pages but unless I were to find some published source and quote that source directly, it wouldn't be proper to an encyclopedia would it? Irving's early work was especially well regarded by the historical community. His use of original sources was EXTRAORDINARY. To label him a 'holocaust denier' is not Mr. Irving's position judging from my reading of his published works. If you think otherwise, I would ask you to provide chapter and verse from Mr. Irving's works or interviews. Otherwise, remove the libel. I think this "un-neutral" entry on this man proves the real worth of Wikipedia, none. (talk) 16:14, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

Moved from my talk page. Theroadislong (talk) 16:26, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

The label under discussion is "holocaust denier", which Irving denies. Irving's denial of his holocaust denial is not as important as the considered opinions of many others who have commented on Irving. Our best secondary sources say that Irving is a holocaust denier. Binksternet (talk) 16:40, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
Labelling him as "holocaust denier" and "nazi" would be relevant in a separate section for criticisms. The article is not neutral as the idea was clearly to discredit him from the very introduction.--Charrua85 (talk) 05:26, 25 January 2014 (UTC)
Works discussing Irving routinely describe him as being best known these days as a holocaust denier and this article reflects that. While Irving has been active on the far-right of politics in several countries, I haven't seen any serious suggestion that he's actually a "Nazi" and the article does not describe him as such despite your implication that it does. Nick-D (talk) 05:33, 25 January 2014 (UTC)

While on the subject of propaganda what's up with calling him "an English writer" instead of a "controversial or discredited historian?" I looked at the sources provided and none are authoritative. The media still predominantly refer to him as some kind of historian, the judge in the Lipstadt case found him to be a historian and other historians who have had their work discredited (Barton, Pappe, Michelet, Ambrose, etc) are still called historians by the media. Wayne (talk) 05:37, 26 January 2014 (UTC)

Please see the many previous talk page discussions of the topic: when most recently discussed consensus was for "writer". Nick-D (talk) 05:53, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
Like Nick says, there was much ado about this, from here on down. Personally I agree that "historian" is more appropriate, considering the preponderance of the term in sources [4] (and the fact that the main sources used against the appellation are clearly not WP:THIRDPARTY). If you want to open this again, I suggest posting an RfC.. -- Director (talk) 06:13, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
Given that the previous discussion ended up being widely advertised on relevant talk pages, I suspect that a RfC would produce the same results. Nick-D (talk) 06:25, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
It's disappointing that Wikipedia can't always be unbiased. Wayne (talk) 14:05, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
There is bias, definitely. Anti-Nazi bias is still bias, sorry to say :). Its gotten to a point that right-wing cooks have created a ridiculous parallel project - Conservapedia, which takes the extreme opposing view on many issues (ofc, its far more biased than Wiki could ever be).
Anyway, if someone wants to post an RfC for "historian", they have my support. I won't be leading the charge though, not going to bang my head against this wall again, thank you. -- Director (talk) 15:45, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

NPOV Dispute - Citations are of namecalling not verifications[edit]

The introductory article cites people calling him a racist and a neo-nazi and holocaust denier over and over, yet does not cite one single source demonstrating that he is. The citation for his 'holocaust denial' stems from a book citing him as one. Why is there so much bias on this? Does there exist one single source where Irving can be shown to support national socialism, espouse fascist views, expressing racist views, or any of the things this article insists he has done? If so, why are they not cited first and foremost? It calls him a holocaust denier, which is factually incorrect since he does not deny the mass murder of Jews and himself has given a figure of 1.3 million Jewish victims of the holocaust. That is holocaust revisionism, not denial. To call this a 'good article' is a real disgrace to Wikipedia. -- (talk) 08:49, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

The following wording used to be in the article and should be put back to answer allegations such as the above:

In presenting his ruling, Mr. Justice Gray concluded (Paragraph 13.167) that he found the following claims against Irving to be 'substantially true':

Irving has for his own ideological reasons persistently and deliberately misrepresented and manipulated historical evidence; that for the same reasons he has portrayed Hitler in an unwarrantedly favourable light, principally in relation to his attitude towards and responsibility for the treatment of the Jews; that he is an active Holocaust denier; that he is anti-Semitic and racist, and that he associates with right-wing extremists who promote neo-Nazism.

-- PBS (talk) 09:26, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Experts and journalists routinely note that Irving is a Holocaust denier (which as PBS notes has also been found to be the case in court), and this article references this. It also notes that he does not regard himself as such. As this issue has been discussed multiple times, I've just removed the POV tag. Nick-D (talk) 09:39, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
"Journalists routinely namecall, therefore it's true." So you agree that it's just people namecalling and that there is not one source to verify the truth of this namecalling. Noted and readded the POV tag. Thanks for your support. -- (talk) 09:49, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
To PBS, that does not address the issue with calling him a neo nazi and a racist based only on how other people describe him, nor does it address the factual inaccuracy of calling him a holocaust denier. There should be less hearsay namecalling and more of Irving's own identification of himself. Why not cite the evidence the ruling was based upon? Why do we get to hear only what his opponents say about him and get nothing based in fact other than the fact there was a ruling and that he is a writer? It's ridiculous. -- (talk) 10:16, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
No, we're not going to turn the article into a forum for Irving's self-justifications as you are arguing for: he has his own website. Per WP:NPOV the article reflects the weight of scholarly and other commentary on Irving, and does in fact note his "identification of himself". I've removed the POV tag again as what you're arguing for is to blatantly bias the article towards Irving's views (for it to not be neutral the article needs to not properly reflect the weight of the literature on this topic) and this has all been discussed previously before. Nick-D (talk) 10:38, 12 March 2014 (UTC)