The German American Congress, which began sessions in Cleveland yesterday, undoubtedly will take the DAWA (German-American Protective Alliance) to its bosom, C. K. Froelich, chairman of the DAWA board and president of the United German Societies and of the German American Conference, declared in an interview yesterday.
Froelich, Carl Nicolai and Dirk Voss will represent Greater New York at the Cleveland conclave. Froelich gave assurance that he will support every move to keep politics out of the gathering. He does not anticipate any effort to remove Jewish leaders from vereins in various parts of the country.
WILL SUPPORT MAJORITY
Asked if he favored sending a protest to President Roosevelt against “the Jewish boycott,” as advocated by some sponsors of the Cleveland congress, Froelich declared he will support the majority sentiment, whatever it turns out to be.
He intimated the congress will bring forth “some surprises.” Questioned as to claims that German societies here are Nazified, Froelich termed them “big baloney.” “I don’t know of one German society which is Nazified,” he said.
There are Jewish business men who are DAWA members and Jewish representatives are expected in Cleveland, Froelich said. He explained that prospective Jewish members are thoroughly scrutinized before admission to DAWA because “we don’t want our consumers to contribute to Untermyer’s boycott funds.”
He also informed the interviewer that “if propaganda were to be disseminated by Americans in the United States to the same extent as it is being spread by Jews here, Americans living in Germany would suffer.”
The Jewish Daily Bulletin is on his required reading list every morning, Froelich said.
“Some of the stories are all right,” he admitted, “but others are of the kind that help us to get new members. Every time the Jewish press publishes misstatements about our homeland, I expect a large influx of new DAWA members the next day.”
SAYS FILM HELPED DAWA
In the first three days of the Broadway showing of the Broadway showing of the anti-Hitler film, 500 new members joined DAWA, he claims. He estimated the present number of stores in the organization at 3,500.
“I have never been a Nazi and never will be,” Froelich announced. At several points in the conversation he voiced profound admiration for “the man who has unified the German nation.” The Friends of the New Germany have no voice in the DAWA, according to him. He and the DAWA are strictly neutral on the Jewish question and have even refused overtures from anti-Semitic organizations, he asserted.
Froelich bitterly assailed “untrue Jewish boycott propaganda,” and told of a rabbi and a Jewish banker, both his friends, who came here from Germany and were so upset by the questions of their relatives here about Nazi’s alleged atrocities that they returned home before they had intended to unable to endure American Jews slanders on the fatherland.