NEW YORK (Jul. 16)
The present attitude toward Jews in Western Germany is analyzed in a survey conducted by the American Jewish Committee on the neo-Nazi movement. The results of the survey, made public here today, establish that anti-Semitic propaganda has been openly resumed this year in Germany.
“In psychological terms, most Germans have not acknowledged the Nazi extermination of 6,000,000 Jews and do not wish to do so,” the report says. “Up to recently there was a tendency to avoid subjects concerning Jews. In the last year, however, openly anti-Semitic literature has begun to reappear in Germany.
“One typical pamphlet accuses Jews of having arranged for their own murders so that after the war they might be able to conduct trials of war criminals. A favorite theme of the contemporary anti-Semitic propagandists is that the number of Jews exterminated by the Nazis has been exaggerated. Thus, a leading neo-Nazi publication claimed that one and one-half million, not six million, was the correct number of Jewish victims.
“On the positive side, however, when Israeli representatives in Germany issued a release showing in detail how six million Jews had perished at the hands of the Third Reich, this rebuttal was given wide circulation by a good part of the German press. There also has been firm excoriation of anti-Semitism by leading German political figures, such as Federal President Theodor Heuss. There is a consciousness among responsible German officials that anti-Semitism must be fought. And there is the work of certain democratic groups to promote better understanding.”
While lauding the West German Government for its reparations pact with Israel and world Jewish organizations and for the legislative program which it prepared with regard to restitution and indemnification to victims of the Nazi regime, the survey of the American Jewish Committee says that “there is some evidence that the German people are lagging behind their legislators in accepting responsibility for the Third Reich’s acts against Jews.”