Now-editorial Notes

The indictment of William D. Pelley, chief of the Silver Shirts, an anti-Semitic organization, on charges of fraudulent stock sales, marks the beginning of the end of the Silver Shirt racket. The Galahad Press, publishers of the vicious anti-Jewish journal Liberation, the Silver Shirt organ, has been declared bankrupt by Judge Webb, of Asheville, N. C. Pelley’s two aides, Robert C. Summerville and Don D. Kellog, have also been indicted with their chief. It has been revealed that a number of prominent “socialites” in various parts of the country had been induced to buy stock in the publishing company of Liberation, which according to an admission by Summerville “has no property and does not even own a sheet of paper.”

As we pointed out on a previous occasion, these destructive organizations, like the Ku Klux Klan, are conducted only as racketeering schemes, playing upon the prejudices and fears of the ill-informed, inciting one element of the population against another by fabricating falsehoods and spreading hate.

The end comes to these organizations either when their dupes cease supporting them or when they succeed in gathering together large sums and the leaders commence to quarrel among themselves as to the division of the spoils.

The Nazified Silver Shirts are on the eve of their complete collapse.

AN UNWISE PLAN

This week’s issue of Liberty contains an article on “What the Jews Want From Hitler” by Arthur Garfield Hays, general counsel of the American Civil Liberties Union. Mr. Hays is a brilliant attorney and a fearless champion of civil liberties. He was in Germany as an observer at the Reichstag fire trial and studied the situation of the Jews under the Hitler regime.

Mr. Hays’ article in Liberty, while illuminating and interesting, contains a dangerous and unwise suggestion. Mr. Hays himself realizes that his proposal will be criticized by Jews, for he writes, at the end of his article: “There will be criticism from Jews that my views are legalistic, that I have suggested a method by which Hitler might affect world opinion without making a substantial change in policy.”

In his opening paragraphs, Mr. Hays states the case clerly:

“Equal rights under the law, without discrimination or favor, without privilege, penalty or immunity, without preferences of any kind depending upon race, creed or religion.

“Hitler can grant no more and the Jews can accept no less.”

Then, after analyzing the anti-Semitic propaganda of the Nazis, Mr. Hays writes:

“The Nazis say that the real difficulty arose out of the immigration into Germany of Polish and Galician Jews in large numbers; that these people were foreigners who took the jobs of good Germans. The fact is overlooked that these Easterners were invited into Germany during the war when labor was scarce; that all of them were not Jews; that a distinction might be made between foreigners and those in Germany whose roots were deep in the soil and had been for centuries.”

And in conclusion Mr. Hays makes the following suggestion:

“It would seem that, even from the point of view of a Hitler, a proclamation of equal rights for all races and religions should be possible and would be advantageous. So long as all Germans had equal rights under the law, he could justify himself in reversing his anti-Semitic policy. By laying down insensate qualifications he would rid the German state of a great many more Jews, who would leave voluntarily.”

In other words, the suggestion is made that the “Easterners,” the so-called Ost Juden, be sacrificed. Many of the Easterners came to Germany during the war when Germany and Austria occupied Russian territory. Many of them came there shortly after the war, after the bolshevist revolution, because they did not fit into the new order established in Soviet Russia. If driven out of Germany, they could not return to their former homes. Such a solution of the Jewish problem in Germany might appeal to the Naumann group of German superpatriots who, notwithstanding all the humiliations heaped upon them, still profess to love the Nazis, but the Jews of the world could not regard this plan as a solution of the problem at all.

It is a dangerous suggestion. It is also an unwise suggestion. For Hitler could not officially admit “that a distinction might be made between foreigners and those in Germany whose roots were deep in the soil and had been for centuries.” Such a distinction would eliminate Hitler himself, for he was not a German until recently. He himself was just such a foreigner in Germany as the Ost Juden.

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