Vienna (Nov. 10)
I should have preferred those Jewish politicians to have been right who calmed our fears by assuring us that the Doll-fears Government was a guarantee that the Jews would not be attacked, and that its fight against Hitlerism was also a fight against anti-Semitism. The methods to be adopted will not be those of the German Nazis, but their tendency will be the same, and soon the Jews will have to make way for the German Christians in all spheres of life.
The first signs of this impending change appeared towards the end of summer, when leading Government politicians suddenly began to flirt with the idea of anti-Semitism, and the government press, and especially the Christian-Social Press, began to demand a numerus clausus against the Jews.
Then, just as suddenly, this campaign stopped. Not, however, out of friendship to the Jews, but for two very practical reasons. In the first place, the League of Nations was in session, and an anti-Semitic agitation would have damaged Austria’s position there. In the second place, the Government needed money, and an internal loan had to be raised. And since the Government needed not only Christian, but also Jewish money, it was considered advisable to postpone the anti-Semitic campaign a little longer. The postponement was well worth while, for the Jews subscribed more than half of the total loan.
On the very day the loan was concluded, however, the anti-Semitic campaign was started again, but much more radically than before, and this time with the open support of the government parties. Nor has the government itself kept out of it. On the contrary, Ministers are now touring the country, addressing mass meetings, and advocating the complete domination of the German Christians in politics, society, culture and business. High state officials, including even a judge of the Supreme Court, go about the country demanding that the government parties should be purged of all Jewish influences and should reject all Jewish help or participation in the new Christian Austria.
The Christian-Social “Reichspost”, the official organ of Dr. Dollfuss recently said: “We advocated anti-Semitism much earlier than did the Nazis, and now we want to renew it and re-invigorate it, and for this purpose we shall willingly accept the help of the Austrian Nazis. Come, let us do it together”. Such words appear daily in the government press and represent the official attitude of the Government. Only a few months ago Jewish help against the Nazis was welcomed, but now the government press tells the Jews not to “interfere between Christians” or between them and their “German brethren”. “In future” they de-declare, “we Christian Austro-Germans shall lead our Christian German people ourselves”.
Dr. Tschermak, the late Minister of Education, put this attitude somewhat more elegantly in a recent book. He demands the complete “dissimilation” of the Jews, that is, their complete separation from the German population. The Jews should be given certain minority rights but not minority rights as at present defined, under the auspices and under the protection of the League of Nations. He demands for example, that Jewish teachers should only be allowed to teach in specifically Jewish schools, Jewish doctors be allowed to treat only Jewish patients, and so on. But he goes on to suggest that the Jews themselves should support this project, and ends with the dimly veiled threat that this would be in their own interest, since a popular anti-Semitic rising would be far more dangerous.