BERLIN (Jul. 9)
“Mussolini’s Conversations with Emil Ludwig,” a new book to be published shortly in Berlin and Vienna, contains several passages in which the Italian Prime Minister discusses the question of anti-Semitism, which the Jewish Telegraphic Agency has received permission to quote.
Herr Emil Ludwig asked Signor Mussolini whether he believed that there were any pure races in Europe, as is claimed by certain authorities.
“Of course,” Signor Mussolini replied, “there are no longer any pure races. Not even the Jews have remained unmixed. Very often it is fortunate crossings that have given a nation strength and beauty.
“Race is sentiment; not a reality. Ninety-five per cent. is sentiment. I shall never believe that any race is able to prove itself biologically pure.
“By some queer prank of fate the champions of a Germanic race are none of them Germans. Gobineau was a Frenchman; Chamberlain an Englishmen; Woltmann a Jew, and Lapouge again a Frenchman.”
Referring to a question by Emil Ludwig, who had asked whether there was not some danger of the apologists of Fascism falling into a similar error about the Latins as the Germans and others have fallen into about the Nordics, Signor Mussolini said that it was impossible. “The professor you have mentioned in this regard is a poet. National pride does not require racial delirium.”
“The best proof against anti-Semitism,” Emil Ludwig commented.
“Anti-Semitism does not exist in Italy,” Signor Mussolini answered. “Jewish Italians have always been good citizens and brave soldiers. They occupy the most important positions in the universities, in the army, in the banks. There are a large number of Jews who are generals. The Commandant of Sardinia, General Modena, is a general of artillery.”
“Whenever things have gone bad with Germany, the Jews have always been blamed for it,” Emil Ludwig remarked, “and now things are very bad in Germany.”
“Yes, the scapegoats,” Signor Mussolini said.