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Originally posted by christinaV
it doesnt matter if it was 6 million or 2 million,
did you see the pictures of what those people were put through?
Originally posted by PuterMan
reply to post by NichirasuKenshin
. Blanket repression of discussion is not a good thing and inevitably leads to suspicion.
_The Times_ of London, July 7, 1966, p. 13. Letter to the Editor. THE DRESDEN RAIDS From Mr. David Irving
Sir, -- Your newspaper has an enviable reputation for accuracy, and your readiness to correct the smallest errors from one day to the next is an inspiration to your readers; but how can a historian correct a mistake, when once he finds himself to have been wrong? I ask the indulgence of your columns.
The bombing of Dresden in 1945 has in recent years been adduced by some people as evidence that conventional bombing can be more devastating than nuclear attacks, and others have sought to draw false lessons from this. My own share of the blame for this is large: in my 1963 book _The Destruction of Dresden_ I stated that estimates of the casualties in that city varied between 35,000 and over 200,000.
The higher figures did not seem absurd when the circumstances were taken into account. I had tried for three years to bring to light German documents relating to the damage, but the east German authorities were unable to assist me. Two years ago I procured from a private east German source what purported to be extracts from the Police President's report, quoting the final death-roll as "a quarter of a million"; the other statistics it contained were accurate, but it is now obvious that the death-roll statistic was falsified, probably in 1945.
The east German authorities (who had originally declined to provide me with the documents) have now supplied to me a copy of the 11-page "final report" written by the area police chief about one month after the Dresden raids, and there is no doubt as to this document's authenticity. In short, the report shows that the Dresden casualties were on much the same scale as in the heaviest Hamburg raids in 1943. The document's author, the _Hoehere SS- und Polizeifuehrer Elbe_, was responsible for civil defence measures in Dresden, it should be noted.
His figures are very much lower than those I quoted. The crucial passage reads: "Casualties: by 10th March, 1945, 18,375 dead, 2,212 seriously injured, and 13,918 slightly injured had been registered, with 350,000 homeless and permanently evacuated." The total death-roll, "primarily women and children," was expected to reach 25,000; fewer than a hundred of the dead were servicemen. Of the dead recovered by then, 6,865 had been cremated in one of the city squares. A total of 35,000 people were listed as "missing".
The general authenticity of the report is established beyond doubt, because within a very few days of receiving the first, a second wartime German report was supplied to me, this time from a western source. It repeats _exactly_ the figures listed in the above report, upon which it was evidently based. The second report, a Berlin police summary of "Air Raids on Reich Territory", dated March 22, 1945, was found, quite by chance, misfiled among the 25,000 Reich Finance Ministry files currently being explored at the west German Federal Archives. It was forwarded to me by one of their archivists, Doctor Boberach. I have no interest in promoting or perpetuating false legends, and I feel it is important that in this respect the record should be set straight.
I remain, Sir, your obedient servant, DAVID IRVING. 25 Elgin Mansions, W.9.
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. 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. According to the evidence introduced by Richard J. Evans at the libel trial of Deborah Lipstadt in 2000, Irving based his estimates of the dead of Dresden on the word of one individual who provided no supporting documentation, used forged documents, and described one witness who was a urologist as Dresden's Deputy Chief Medical Officer. The doctor has since complained about being misidentified by Irving, and further, was only reporting rumours about the death toll. Today, casualties at Dresden are estimated as 25,000–35,000 dead, probably towards the lower end of that range.