Germans Gain Another Delay in Bernheim Case; Fear Bargain at Expense of Jews
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Germans Gain Another Delay in Bernheim Case; Fear Bargain at Expense of Jews

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Seeing their efforts for complete elimination of the Bernheim question definitely fail, the German delegation here this afternoon, in behind-the-scene negotiations, asserted its readiness to withdraw objections to the Bernheim petition on condition that the question of German violation of Jewish rights in the Upper Silesia plebiscite area, which the plea poses to the League of Nations Council, be taken up Friday instead of Thursday.

This gain in time, it was explained by members of the delegation, is necessary in order to communicate with Berlin on the working out of the text of a declaration which the German representatives will read to the Council when the Bernheim question is discussed.

It is learned that the British delegation, anxious not to antagonize the Germans, in view of the important disarmament question now pending, helped them secure acceptance of this compromise. It is now believed that the Bernheim plea will be taken up Friday instead of tomorrow.


Diplomatic circles interested in a frank discussion of the Jewish question feel that a bargain has been reached even before the question is taken up publicly, and express regret that the bargaining is being done at the expense of the Jews.

The Journal des Nations, forseeing a bargain, warns the Powers today “not to commit a crime against humanity by offering the fate of thousands of Jews in exchange for other concessions.”

The fear is expressed that postponement of consideration of the question until Friday will prevent the personal participation in the discussion of Sir John Simon, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, and Joseph Paul-Boncour, French Minister of Foreign Affairs, who may leave Geneva tomorrow. The importance of the discussions would thus be considerably minimized.


Norman H. Davis, American Ambassador-at-large, authorized the Jewish Telegraphic Agency to deny definitely rumors prevalent in Geneva that Count Rudolf Nadolny, head of the German delegation at Geneva, had assured him in behalf of the German delegation that the German Government was ready to modify its anti-Semitism and reinstate the ousted Jewish officials, professors and professional men.

“Count Nadolny never mentioned such a thing to me,” Mr. Davis told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency correspondent. “All we discussed was disarmament. We did not touch the Jewish question because we did not come to it.”

The rumors that the German Government had made such a statement were widely circulated here last night, and several correspondents, it was learned, cabled stories to that effect. It is believed that they were started by interested German circles with the purpose of alleviating the situation and modifying the atmosphere in connection with the Bernheim petition over violation of Jewish rights in Upper Silesia.

” The German manoeuver is good for one day only,” a prominent member of the delegation of one of the important Powers commented to the correspondent, concerning the postponement which the Germans obtained yesterday.


Telephonic advices to Geneva last night revealed that two Jews had been seriously injured at Gleiwitz last night during an “inquiry” which local German authorities started among the friends of Franz Bernheim in order to obtain evidence supporting the German claim that Bernheim is not a native of Upper Silesia and was not entitled to petition the League under the terms of the Polish-German convention governing the plebiscite area.

Dr. Leo Motzkin, chairman of the Actions Committee of the World Zionist Organization, who with Dr. Emil Margulies, noted Czechoslovakian Jewish leader, presented the Jewish petitions to the League, is waging a strong single-handed fight here to counteract the manouevering of the German delegation. Nevertheless, it is felt that the absence of American and British Jewish representation here is weakening Jewish chances and the question is being asked in diplomatic circles why the American Jewish Congress has not sent a representative in time to support the petition.

The committee of three, which is considering the other two petitions presented by Jewish organizations, is awaiting developments in the Bernheim case. It is learned the committee is inclined to bring up the petitions even if the Bernheim plea is ruled out by the Council.

The League has also received, from G. G. Knox, president of the League commission for the Saar region, a complaint against Nazi activities and a demand that measures be taken to protect officials in the Saar, including the Jews.

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