Irving is kicked and punched at restaurant
Monday 13 July 1992
But the revisionist historian also discovered that events are open to interpretation. Although the attack was real, what appeared to be a sinister conspiracy turned out to be no such thing.
Police were called to the restaurant, Richoux, in South Audley Street, Mayfair, just after 3pm yesterday. Mr Irving said he had been subjected to a hail of blows, while a television crew outside looked on.
Mr Irving has been paid a reputed pounds 75,000 by the Sunday Times for his role in finding and transcribing a complete version of the diaries of Joseph Goebbels, Hitler's propaganda minister, serialisation of which began in the newspaper yesterday.
Jewish groups have criticised the newspaper and its editor, Andrew Neil, for employing Mr Irving, who has claimed the Nazi gas chambers did not exist. They say Mr Irving has Nazi sympathies.
Mr Irving said yesterday that he entered the restaurant, 100 yards from his home and where he had lunched for 25 years, with 'a blonde Danish companion', to find several men apparently waiting inside for him.
'Before I had time to order a meal, several of them jumped up screaming insults and threats, and began punching and kicking me,' Mr Irving said.
Mr Irving was shaken, but unhurt. Police arrived and statements were taken, but no arrests were made.
What Mr Irving saw through the restaurant window while he waited for police alarmed him. A 'mob' of 20 or 30 people seemed to form outside, some carrying walkie-talkies. There was also a 'fake police car'. The crowd included an Anglia Television crew. 'My suspicion is that I was being set up. They wanted to get me outside where I would be beaten up in front of the television cameras,' Mr Irving said.
His fears proved to be groundless. Anglia Television was filming a forthcoming drama series in the street. 'It was pure coincidence. We had a film crew there with walkie-talkies and dummy police cars. They had no idea Mr Irving was in the restaurant,' an Anglia spokesman said.
Police said they were called by the restaurant after a disturbance. 'David Irving was eating there with a female friend. He claims an unknown assailant whom he did not see kicked him in the back,' a spokesman said.
Dr Lionel Kopelowitz, former president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, last night denounced the attack. 'I deplore physical violence in all its forms. I certainly do not share Mr Irving's views, but our attacks should be in argument and debate,' he said.
Jewish readers were said to have boycotted the Sunday Times in large numbers yesterday because of the controversy. In Stanmore, north-west London, copies were only available from behind the counter.
Kapil Yagnik, owner of Journaux, a newsagent's in Hampstead Garden Suburb, reported 100 cancellations from his usual sale of 700.
- 1 Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
- 2 Pictures show young Palestinian girl biting Israeli soldier trying to detain boy during West Bank protests
- 3 Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
- 4 Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
- 5 Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Stock up on canned food for stock market crash, warns former Gordon Brown adviser
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
£18000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive or Senior Sal...
£40000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...