The secular year 1934 opened rather brightly in Germany, of all places. No edict was promulgated by Adolf Hitler to the effect that the persecution of the Jews constituted a ghastly mistake and a blotch on Germania’s escutcheon, and was hereby rescinded. But a courageous note was struck by Cardinal Faulhaber, the Catholic prelate whose capital is Munich, in his New Year sermon. While there is a Faulhaber, there is the hope that the words of the minority cannot be choked off.
This prelate, who is a member of a German family of title, one who is neither a social nor racial upstart, devoted the greater part of his sermon to a slashing attack on the Nordic myth. The old Aryan tribesmen were not, as that un-Nordic looking person Goebbels would like us to believe, God’s noblemen. They were a pretty dirty and mean lot, it appears. They were, the Cardinal told one of the largest audiences that ever got inside the doors of St. Michael’s Cathedral, slothful, kept slaves, presumably an Asiatic habit, were self-indulgent and forced their women to do much harder work than that which is involved in taking in washing. And two thousand years before, the Cardinal pointed out, the Babylonians had perfected a postal system and the Jews an educational organization. “Let it not be forgotten,” he said, “that we were saved not by German blood, but by the blood of the Saviour,” meaning Jesus, who cannot be represented as anything but a Jew even by the twisted reasoning of the Aryan ethnologists.
Cardinal Faulhaber expressed his aversion to the attempt to base a confession of faith on race and pointed to the New Testament injunction of Jesus to his disciples to teach and baptize all peoples and unite all nations in a Kingdom of God.
There are so many elements of paganism in the Nazi psychology and mythology, that in speaking up against the Hitlerian intrusions in the religious life of the German people, Cardinal Faulhaber is waging the fight of a Christian. For one of the tenets of Christianity is that a man, or woman, has the right to choose his way to God, and to personal salvation, and that his choice is not to be delimited for him by his race. Hitlerism, in an amended form, might be found acceptable to Catholics and Protestants, but in its present form, with its racial mythology, no fearless Catholic and no fearless Protestant can accept it-for the simple reason that its racial basis wars with basic Christian concept that a man’s race has nothing to do with his will and his capacity to save himself and enter the (Christian) Kingdom of God. Hitlerism, with its mythology, cuts off from the hope of salvation and election tens of millions of human beings who would otherwise be acceptable. It destroys the assumption on which missionary efforts are based. Therefore when a Christian clergyman speaks up against Hitlerism he is affirming his Christianity, and when a Christian clergyman pretends to accept Hitlerism-as so many have-he is simply a coward, a time-server and, temporarily at least, not a Christian.
English colonial and mandatorial pride has bowed the neck again to Arab urgency. The English colonial government has in effect repudiated and apologized for its attempt to break the back of the Arab riots at Jaffa of October 27th. It has done this by repudiating the action of the responsible officer, Superintendent John A. M. Faraday, Jaffa police chief, who has just been ordered transferred to Beersheba, which action constitutes at the least demotion and rebuke. Jaffa is, despite its Arabs, a city compared to which Beersheba is a wild frontier post. This demotion comes as the result of an inquiry by Attorney General Herbert, a member also of the Murison investigating commission which has been conducting an inquiry into the Arab riots, in secret, but has not yet issued its report.
The transfer of Superintendent Faraday is not the only concession made to Arab clamor. The hunt for Jewish tourists who were overstaying their leaves was most obviously instituted to quiet the Arabs, while, at the same time, Trans-Jordanian Arabs have been crossing the border without any by-your-leave from the authorities. It is on the whole difficult to avoid the conclusion that the Mandatory government welcomes the opportunity, extended to them by Arab demands, to restrict the rights of Jews to Jewish land, instead of bearing in mind that it is under the obligation to exercise a mandate over Palestine for the Jews.
A LITTLE QUIET IN ROUMANIA
There is, for the moment, peace in Roumania. The five-day-old Cabinet of Constantine Angelescu has yielded to one formed by M. Tatarescu, a young leader of the Liberal Party who accepted the Premiership only on condition that he be allowed to carry on the policies of his slain leader, Ion G. Duca, shot to death by an Iron Guard student. This young man, Radu Constantinescu, after striking several heroic postures before the cameramen, was interrogated by police, before whom he expressed his conviction that he killed the Premier of Roumania not as a murderer, but as a patriot.
Since the arrest of the 1,400 Iron Guardists, following the assassination of Premier Duca, the threat of disorders, which at first seemed imminent, has been scotched. King Carol may have suffered from a cold on the day of Premier Duca’s funeral, but it is accepted as a token of returning peace that the scheduled visit of King Boris of Bulgaria, which recently had been cancelled, has been put on the program again. King Boris had enough trouble in his native bulgaria without visiting Roumania for more.
The only factor of governmental uncertainty at the present time lies in whether the veteran Foreign Minister, Nicolas Titulescu, who has been spending the winter at St. Moritz, will accept a portfolio in the new Cabinet. Should be choose to do so without making too many conditions which would go counter to Premier Tatarescu’s intention to enforce the Duca program, the government would be much further strengthened against the Iron Guard propaganda, which silently continues, despite the legal ban on that organization’s activities.