BERLIN (Oct. 7)
Werner Krauss, the German actor whose anti-Semitic record is so black that he was driven out of Berlin less than three years ago after pitched battles had been fought in the streets, is back on a Berlin stage. This time, there have been no protests.
Krauss was the second highest Nazi theatrical official within six months after Hitler took over. In staging the “Merchant of Venice,” he had Jessica revealed as an abducted “Aryan” girl, so as to guard against “racial defilement.” He played no less than five different Jewish parts in the notorious “Jew Suess” movie, which Goebbels had filmed as an invitation to murder at the time Germany’s Jews were being shipped to the gas chambers.
So as to “absorb atmosphere” for his roles, Krauss journeyed expressly to the martyred Warsaw ghetto and reportedly had the blackshirted SS whip venerable rabbis into dancing before him. In an interview, he said that “Jew Suess” had at long last given him the chance to “be as anti-Semitic as I have always wanted to be.”
Bearing this in mind, Berlin’s democrats and Jews in December,1950, rioted and battled police for three days, in a mass protest against his re-appearance in an Ibsen play. At that time, Krauss yielded and left Berlin for Vienna. Now he has returned and performs without molestation.