VIENNA (Feb. 21)
Austrian Socialists are entering the Nazi ranks in large numbers, it became known today.
Nazi leaders here said that they are being swamped with offers of cooperation from the Socialists who are embittered by the civil war in which their party was crushed after holding out for a week against tremendous odds. The Nazis say that not only are the Socialists thronging into their ranks, but they also offered the Nazis arms and ammunition with which to fight the Dollfuss regime. Offers of arms, according to the Nazis, were refused since the party plan is to gain the power through the army, the police and the gendarmerie and not through an insurrection.
Socialists have supported the Dollfuss regime much as they disliked it on the ground that anything was better than a government patterned after that of Hitler.
The Socialist swing into Nazi ranks is based on a belief that Nazis have more to offer the Socialist party than the Dollfuss government.
However, government supporters express the opinion that action of the Dollfuss regime in crushing the Socialists will lead to a swing by the Nazis into government ranks. They contend that Dollfuss has shown that he can do anything that Hitler could accomplish.
Martial law was lifted here early taday. Thus the government hopes to show its strenght, despite the Nazi ultimatum.