German Jewish Leaders Evaluate Neo-nazi Success in State Elections

Two leaders of German Jewry told the European executive of the World Jewish Congress here today that, while there is every reason for apprehension among Jews and others over the recent electoral successes of the National Democratic Party in the state elections in the West German provinces of Bavaria and Hesse, the press and public bodies have exaggerated somewhat the picture of the situation in West Germany.

These evaluations were voiced by Dr. Henryk van Dam, general secretary of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, and Dr. Heinz Galinski, chairman of the Jewish community of West Berlin. They were the principal speakers at this morning’s session of the WJC executive, which convened here last night.

Dr. Nahum Goldmann, president of the World Jewish Congress, summarizing the discussion concerning West German political developments, told the session that “there was no room for panic.” At the moment, he said, “we are watching symptoms only.” The National Democratic Party in West Germany is a fusion of a number of right-wing groups in that country, some of them openly neo-Nazi and others composed of former members of the Nazi Party under the Hitler regime.

The WJC executive session was opened last night by Britain’s Lord Sieff of Brimpton, chairman of the European executive, and heard a general review of the situation of world Jewry and in Israel, delivered by Dr. Goldmann. The sessions of the executive are being attended by delegations representing France, Italy, Belgium, Switzerland, Ireland, Sweden, Hungary and Yugoslavia, in addition to West Germany and West Berlin. The presiding officer at this morning’s session, where the German situation was highlighted, was Astorre Mayer, of Italy, vice-chairman of the European executive.

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