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5,000 Lose Jobs As Hungary Bars Jews Firewood Industry

More than 5,000 Jews were thrown out of work today when the Hungarian Parliament passed a lew “Aryanizing” the firewood business. The bill divides Hungary into economic districts, each of which will be allowed a single wholesaler appointed by the Government. Only merchants who can prove their “Aryan” descent are eligible.

Sheriffs are given until Oct. 15 to remove Jews and appoint a “suitable” number of “Aryan” retailers in their counties. The firewood business is very important in Hungary, where the coal supply is limited and most homes are heated by wood-burning Nuremberg stoves.

For many years firewood distribution has been a predominantly Jewish enterprise. In Budapest alone there are 2,500 dealers, 2,300 of whom are Jews. The news of the bill spread panic among owners of timber land, as well as firewood distributors themselves, because of fears there will be insufficient fuel this Winter, in spite of the acquisition of 24,000,000 acres of Transylvanian forest land as a result of the Vienna accord.

Even last year there was a firewood shortage because of disorganization and lack of transport from the forest lands in the Carpatho-Ukraine. This year, as a result of constant army mobilization, there has been no woodcutting and timber owners fear the Government bureaucracy will be unable to effect distribution in time to fill bins before winter.

The newspaper Pesti Ujsag, official Nazi organ, in commenting on the bill says the measure is necessary because land-owning aristocrats have been selling their wood to Jews who paid higher prices. It charges the wealthy bishopric of southern Hungary has been selling timber exclusively to Jews.

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