A Duel between the Jewish community of Danzig and the Nazi-controlled Danzig Senate will take place this week in Geneva before the Council of the League of Nations.
The Jewish community of Danzig submitted a petition to the League of Nations charging the Senate with violating the constitution of the Free City by indulging in anti-Jewish legislation. It demands that the League of Nations force the Danzig Senate to revoke its anti-Jewish laws and to secure the safety of the Jews against the anti-Jewish propaganda.
Admitting that a severe anti-Jewish boycott is taking place in Danzig under the very nose of the administration, the Danzig Senate, in stating its case before the League of Nations maintains that the laws against the Jewish population which were adopted by the Senate do not violate the Danzig constitution but are an expression of the will of the people.
COUNCIL MUST DECIDE WHO IS RIGHT
The Council of the League of Nations has therefore to decide this week whether the Jews or the Nazi-controlled Senate is right in the interpretation of the constitution of the Free City for the observance of which the Senate is responsible to the League of Nations.
The Jewish petition against the Danzig Senate is one of seven petitions submitted to the League of Nations last week. Not only have the Jews something to say against the Senate, but also the Catholics, the Poles and other minorities in Danzig.
There is no doubt that the Danzig Senate has little chance of winning its case before the League. The recent parliamentary elections in Danzig which Goering and Geobbels were invited to witness by the local Nazis, have made it clear to the world that the Nazis consider Danzig a part of Nazi Germany, even though the Free City is still under the jurisdiction of the League of Nations.
LEAGUE CAN HELP DANZIG JEWS
While the League of Nations is helpless in the case of Jews in Nazi Germany, it is in a position to do much for the Jews of Danzig as long as Danzig is still under the League’s supervision.
That Senate of Danzig may have a Nazi majority but once the League decides to vest more authority in Sean Lester, its present High Commissioner for Danzig, the Nazi activities against the Jews will be easily checked by Mr. Lester.
In order to obtain such increased power, High Commissioner Lester also submitted a memorandum to the Council of the League. In his memorandum Mr. Lester urges the League once and for all to define his status so that he may be able to act more effectively, not only with regard to protecting the Jews but also with regard to othed matters concerning the welfare of the Danzig population.
The Danzig issue will thus become the center of the session of the League Council, especially since the rapporteur on Danzig is none other than Capt. Anthony Eden, Britain’s outstanding diplomat. It is certain that the League will not forego the opportunity to demonstrate to Nazi Germany that Danzig is not yet a part of the Reich, and that the Jews in Danzig cannot be eliminated as they are in Germany.
REICH DRAFT EDICT BARS JEWS IN ARMY
While the Danzig issue was coming to the forefront this week, the elimination of Jews from the German army attracted the major share of interest.
The long awaited conscription law makes it clear that Jews will not be admitted into the German army, and that any German soldier who marries a Jewess will not be promoted from the ranks of a private.
A surprise in the conscription law was the provision that in time of war the Ministry of War can mobilize Jews “just as inhabitants and not as citizens,” and utilize them for any purpose it may see fit. This was interpreted as meaning the Jews will be used during the next war for digging trenches and for other services which do not involve the use of arms. As far as trusting the Jews with arms is concerned, it was made clear that this will be out of the question.
Jewish leaders in Germany, while expecting that the conscription law would contain such humilitating provisions, nevertheless felt greatly depressed when the conscription law with all its details were promulgated. This law for the first time states officially that the Jews are not considered citizens of the country. It defines the status of the Jews as merely “inhabitants.”
CITIZENS CLUB CLOSED IN HAMBURG
To emphasize that the Jews are no longer to consider themselves citizens of Germany, the so-called Citizens Club in Hamburg, which had many Jewish members, was closed down last week with the explanation that a Jew in Germany is today no longer a citizen and thus cannot belong to a Citizens Club.
Deprived of citizenship and barred from military ranks, the Jews in Germany last week faced a renewed campaign to drive them out of commerce as well. The signal for this campaign came from Berlin in the form of two anti-Jewish parades led by brass bands with Nazis carrying placards urging the boycott of Jewish firms.
Following this signal, Jewish stores were wrecked in Dusseldorf and in other German cities. The attacks on the Jews were especially severe in different parts of Bavaria where the spirit of Julius Streicher has been demonstrating itself to no less degree than in Franconia, the province ruled by Streicher.
NAZIS CHECKED IN AUSTRIA
Nazi activities were openly checked for the first time last week in Austria when the authorities suppressed the “Aryan” Press Club in Vienna and prohibited the holding of meetings by the Austrian anti-Semitic union. These measures on the part of the Austrian government were taken as an indication that the Schuschnigg Cabinet has finally decided to defy openly the Nazi influence in Austria with respect to anti-Jewish propaganda.
In Czechoslovakia the Nazis won a sweeping victory last week in the parliamentary elections. Almost eighty per cent of the entire German population in those parts of Czechoslovakia neighboring Silesia voted for the Nazi ticket. The Nazi faction in the Czech parliament will now be the strongest.
There is little fear, however, that the Nazis will have any influence on the government machinery in Czechoslovakia as the cabinet is determined strictly to isolate the Nazis in Czechoslovakia from any contact with the Nazis in Germany. Unfriendly towards Germany because of Hitler’s ambition to regain a part of Czechoslovakia, the Czech government will never permit the Nazis in the country to gain a foothold which would endanger the borders of Czechoslovakia.
Nevertheless, the Jews of Czechoslovakia have good grounds for concern over the possibilities that the Nazi faction in the Czech parliament will make use of its parliamentary right to spread anti-Jewish proapganda from the parliamentary tribune. It is in this connection that political observers believe that the parliament in Czechoslovakia may eventually be dissolved if the Nazi members should try to convert it into a platform for propagating Nazi doctrines.
WHITE BOOK SUMS UP NAZI REPRESSIVE ACTS
A White Book summarizing the Nazi activities in Germany against the Jews and including all the anti-Jewish laws enacted by the German government, was published last week by the American Jewish Committee in New York. This book gives a concrete idea of what the Hitler government has done to the Jews during the two and a half years of its existence.
The White Book issued by the American Jewish Committee is well compiled and well edited. It is the best accusation which the Jews could present against the Nazis. It is a fine piece of work, and will be appreciated by many editors, historians and students of the Jewish problem in Nazi Germany.
NAZI PROPAGANDA REVEALED AT RUTGERS
The spirit of Nazi Germany was revealed last week in the German department of the Women’s College of Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N. J., when Prof. Leinard Bergel was dismissed for opposing anti-Jewish and pro-Hitler propaganda in the classrooms. The trustees of the university immediately set up an investigating committee to establish to what extent the head of the department, Dr. Frederick J. Hauptmann, is responsible for the anti-Jewish propaganda in his department.
The hearings of the investigating committee will probably not be concluded before Monday or Tuesday. The witnesses who have appeared until now, however, have all testified to the fact that the charges of anti-Semitism against Dr. Hauptmann are well based. Incidents were brought out before the investigating committee by students and recent graduates, as well as by other faculty members, disclosing that a definite anti-Jewish spirit prevails among the faculty of the German department in the Women’s College.
ZIONIST CONGRESS OPENS IN LUCERNE AUG. 27
An official announcement was made this week by the Zionist Executive that the next Zionist Congress will be held in Lucerne, Switzerland, and will open on August 27.
Although the next Congress does not promise to be of great importance, it is expected that American Zionists will be represented this time by more delegates than ever before. A campaign to obtain a larger American representation in the Actions Committee and the forthcoming World Zionist Executive, has now been started in New York in connection with the elections to the Congress. The success of this campaign depends upon the actual role which the American delegates play in Lucerne.
Despite the fact that the Revisionists seceded from the Zionist Organization, friendly negotiations between them and the Zionist Executive this week resulted from the Zionist Executive. Anxious to prevent the Revisionists from applying for immigration visas directly to the Palestine government, the Zionist Executive has reached a compromise with them for the number of visas to be granted them under the present labor schedule. Further negotiations about a general agreement with regard to the distribution of visas are now going on in Jerusalem and may culminate in a friendly understanding.