End of Vienna Jewish Community During German Occupation Arrested As Collaborator
Menu JTA Search

End of Vienna Jewish Community During German Occupation Arrested As Collaborator

Download PDF for this date

Dr. Richard Lowenhertz, who was president of the Jewish community of Vienna during the German occupation, has been arrested on charges of being a collaborator, it was learned here today. In his place the government has appointed Profs. Heinrich Schurr and Ben-Zion Lazar.

News of Dr. Lowenhertz’ arrest was revealed by Dr. Ernest Marton, International Red Cross representative for central Europe, who has just returned here after tour of Austria, Hungary and Czechoslovakia.

Dr. Marton said that there were 1,000 full Jews remaining in the Austrian capital. Two-hundred are technicians who were used as forced labor in German war plants, while the other 800 were in hiding until Vienna was liberated. An additional 1,400 Jews are expected to return from theresienstadt, Dr. Marton was told. He said that there are also about 6,000 part Jews in Vienna.

No relief work has started for needy Jews there as yet, but funds have been received from the Joint Distribution Committee representatives in Budapest to open relief kitchens and to establish an asylum for aged persons, who comprise most of the survivors. Dr. Marton disclosed that for the first time since the "anschluss," a memorial service was held at the grave of Theodor Herzl last week, on the forty-first anniversary of his death.


About 40,000 Jewish deportees have already returned to Hungary, the Red Cross representative said, and another 80,000 are expected. However, no Jewish children are to be found in any town or city in the country, with the exception of Budapest. The children were murdered by the Germans, together with hundreds of thousands of adults, at the Oswiecim death camp.

The Hungarian JDC representatives have been given financial assistance to needy Jews, Dr. Marton said, but the funds at their disposal are not sufficient to meet the urgent needs of the tens of thousands of destitute persons. The JDC, he continued, this planning to establish producers and consumers cooperatives and organize agricultural colonies, but implementation of these plans depends upon help from abroad.

Jewish communities throughout Hungary are beginning to revive, Dr. Marton found, and many have begun rebuilding destroyed synagogues, However, there is a great dearth of spiritual leaders as most of the Hungarian rabbis were exterminated in concentration camps. All sections of the Jewish community, he said, are working together and pre-war differences have been forgotten to a great extent.

In Slovakia, from where almost all Jews were deported, the surviving Orthodox Jews are without leaders. Relief work has been started by a Zionist leader, M. Naumann. who has just returned from Oswiecim. He has established a "Jewish Assistance Committee," which has opened two relief kitchens and two sanitoriums, but both funds and supplies are urgently needed.

In Bratislava, which was the capital of the Nazi puppet state of Slovakia, all the synagogues are still a mass of ruins. A Jewish school has been established by a Rabbi Leibovics. The problem of property belonging to surviving Jews which is who held by Slovaks has not yet been settled satisfactorily, Dr. Marton stated.

In Prague, however, the government is extending liberal aid to Jews passing through on their way to their home countries. Many of these come from Theresienstadt, where there were still 8,000 Jews as of July 1. There were about 30,000 Jews in Theresienstadt when the camp was liberated by the Russians.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund