Hardships for Correspondents Seen Following Thompson Ouster
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Hardships for Correspondents Seen Following Thompson Ouster

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New expulsions of foreign correspondents from Germany and increased difficulties in reporting news regarded by the Nazi regime as unfavorable is seen here as the aftermath of the expulsion of Dorothy Thompson from Hitler’s Third Reich on twenty-four hours’ notice.

Miss Thompson, wife of Sinclair Lewis, the novelist, left Berlin last night for Paris after having been notified by the Gestapo, Goering’s secret police, that she would be escorted to the German frontier if she did not leave the country voluntarily within twenty-four hours.

The American writer was expelled for having written a series of articles for the Jewish Telegraphic Agency last year in which she depicted the anti-Semitic terror then raging, and for having made an uncomplimentary reference to Chancellor Adolf Hitler.

In foreign diplomatic cirles here opinion was unanimous that the expulsion of Miss Thompson was the first shot fired in a new Nazi campaign in which the government expects to banish from Germany all foreign newspaper correspondents who do not accept the Nazi regime at its own face value and who are not prepared to become mere tools of the Propaganda Ministry.

At the same time, it is understood, the Nazis will exclude from the Third Reich all newspapers and periodicals that do not fulfil the requirements expected of correspondents.


Miss Thompson visited Germany in April, 1933, as a special representative of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency to investigate reports of persecutions and torture-methods employed by the Nazis against the Jews and political opponents.

She wrote a series of six articles, “Hitler, the Menace,” which ran in the Jewish Daily Bulletin and other newspapers.

In the articles, Miss Thompson accused the German government of denying “atrocities” but justifying “reprisals” and of using “blackmail” to “combat atrocity propaganda.”

In the first article of the series, “The Brown Terror,” after describing the punishment in store for anyone giving information to correspondents, Miss Thompson declared:

“Scores and perhaps hundreds of people have died in Germany as the result of the Brown Terror.

“Hundreds, and perhaps, thousands have suffered serious and extreme painful injuries, from the results of which they may never wholly recover.


“Tens of thousands have been thrown into prison or into concentration camps for activities which are no crime at all under the constitution to which the present government took its oath.”

In the first article Miss Thompson described her experience in obtaining information at hospitals regarding victims of storm troop attacks. The customary procedure in German hospitals, of maintaining a complete record on all cases, including the patient’s testimony as to how he incurred his wounds, had been ordered suspended, she revealed, and all cases were reported as “accidents.”

“It is therefore clear,” Miss Thompson wrote, “that patients received by hospitals with wounds inflicted by Storm Troopers are being listed as accident cases, and if they die, they are not murdered but simply die of injuries received due to accident—or, of heart failures, as one notorious case, that of Dr. Neumann, is known to have been reported. Dr. Neumann died after a gruelling torture which ended with pepper being rubbed into his wounds, but the official report said that his heart failed, as indeed, it did.”


Miss Thompson also stated that she had seen the carefully documented records of 370 cases in the city of Berlin alone, in which methods of torture had been used. These cases were on file with foreign consulates and embassies and other reputable agencies, she declared. She also described several score other cases which she had personally investigated in Berlin and the German provinces.

In the remaining articles of the series, Miss Thompson described in detail the measures for elimination of Jews and liberals from the economic system and the professions, and the legal measures employed by the Nazis to degrade sections of the population and analyzed the Nazi revolutionary technique and the principals upon which the National Socialist movement was founded.

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