Oxford victory for freedom and real history!
Security guards outside the Union's St Michael's St entrance prepare to confront mob
After seven previous invitations had been withdrawn under the combined pressure of influential British Jews and far left thugs, the historian David Irving finally fulfilled a longstanding engagement to address the Oxford Union on Monday November 26th.
Union members had voted by 62% to 38% in favour of continuing with the invitation, which had the support of the Jewish MP for Oxford West & Abingdon, Dr Evan Harris. Union officers including President Luke Tryl made clear that they did not necessarily agree with the conclusions Mr irving has drawn from historical research, but they nonetheless insisted on his right to express those views in open debate.
A mob of the usual suspects rejected this free speech argument, and special security measures had to be in place on Monday night to prevent the Oxford Union's buildings being overrun.
Arriving late in the afternoon, the JailingOpinions.com webmaster (himself an Oxford Union member) and Lady Michèle Renouf were treated with great courtesy by the Union's officers and staff, and were impressed by their determination (under great pressure) to proceed with this controversial event.
David Irving arrived about 5.30 pm and was taken to an annex of the Union's Library, with its famous Pre-Raphaelite murals by William Morris, Edward Burne-Jones and Dante Gabriel Rossetti.
Matters were becoming considerably less civilised outside, as many of the 450 Union members with tickets for the event had difficulty forcing their way through a dense crowd of opponents. Thames Valley police failed to prevent the persistent obstruction of St Michael's Street.
Worse was to follow as several dozen demonstrators scaled the Union walls and stormed the debating chamber, about thirty minutes before the scheduled start of the event. Again the police did nothing to prevent this blatant illegality, but after forceful objections from Union members, the demonstrators left the building.
Only the courageous determination of the Union's own officers and staff prevented a victory for the anti-free speech rabble. Having allowed the problem in the first place by their own incompetence, the police now insisted that it would be unsafe for members not already in the debating chamber to make their way across the gardens.
The event therefore had to be split into two. David Irving, Evan Harris MP, and Telegraph columnist Anne Atkins spoke in the debating chamber, while BNP chairman Nick Griffin and two student debaters spoke in the Macmillan Room, a restaurant above the New Library.
David Irving spoke in the debating chamber of the Oxford Union, whose former presidents include five British prime ministers
BNP chairman Nick Griffin spoke in the Oxford Union's Macmillan Room, after being unable to gain access to the debating chamber
Apoplectic with impotent rage, George Galloway MP told the press that he would have favoured storming the building to prevent the meeting. The irony of course is that the forces aiming to silence David Irving and jail scholars across Europe for their opinions are exactly the same forces which conspired to destroy George Galloway because of his views on the Middle East.
Links to press coverage of the event, David Irving's own account, and a surprisingly fair report by a Jewish student, are on David Irving's website.