Stahlhelm Headquarters Reveal Duesterberg Became Ill when Jewish Origin Revealed
Menu JTA Search

Stahlhelm Headquarters Reveal Duesterberg Became Ill when Jewish Origin Revealed

Download PDF for this date

Lieutenant Colonel Theodor Duesterberg, second leader of the Stahlhelm, monarchist war veterans society, became ill following Nazi disclosures that he is descended from Jews, it was revealed here yesterday in an official statement issued by the Stahlhelm headquarters in connection with the agitation of the Nazi press which demand to know why Duesterberg’s proffered resignation last week was not accepted.

The Nazi revelation concerning his Jewish origin “overwhelmed Duesterberg and broke down his health,” says the statement. “He wanted to resign, but the confidence expressed in him by the Stahlhelm resurrected him,” according to the declaartion.

“We swear Duesterberg’s unshakeable devotion was not influenced by his origin,” asserts the statement. “We are aware that Duesterberg’s father in 1813 volunteered as a soldier for the liberation of Germany and was awarded the iron cross.

“Duesterberg himself was wounded in the Expedition to China. Subsequently he fought in the world war in the most dangerous places.”

The communique discloses further: We learn that Duesterberg’s father participated in the wars against Napoleon as a Jewish physician. Subsequently he was converted and became chief medical officer at headquarters, the Stahlhelm communique says.

The statement from Stahlhelm headquarters fully confirms the reports made public by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that Duesterberg was of Jewish origin and that the knowledge of this fact had led him to offer his resignation to the praesidium of the Stahlhelm, which, however, prevailed upon him to withdraw it.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund