honorary iron cross for all war participants without distinction as to race or religion as proclaimed by von Hindenburg last Sunday.
(The decree was signed by the president himself and applies to all three classes in which the Honor Cross is awardedâ€”front soldiers, all participants in the World War, and their parents and widows.â€”Ed.)
Hitler insisted to von Hindenburg that he would co-sign the proclamation only if the “Aryan” paragraph was observed and if the proclamation distinctly specified that the iron cross was to be given to Aryans only. Von Hindenburg, however, sternly opposed Hitler’s demand.
In a move to counteract the president’s attitude today’s Voelkischer Beobachter, Hitler’s own newspaper, reports that the War Veterans section of the Nazi party is issuing instructions that every business firm in the city will award Hitler’s book “Mein Kampf” to all its employees wounded during the war or the Nazi revolution “as a token of honor and gratitude for their sacrifices for the nation.”
This silent war between Hitler and von Hindenburg on the question as to whether Jews should receive the iron cross affects 96,000 Jewish war participants as well as the parents and widows of 12,000 Jewish soldiers who died in battle. All of these, by the von Hindenburg proclamation, are eligible to receive the honorary cross.
The Jewish War Veterans section of the Zionist Federation today ordered its members to report each case of a refusal of the cross to any Jew who is entitled to receive one.