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Reichsvertretung Demands End of Defamation, Boycott

September 25, 1935
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Demanding that defamation of Jews be stopped and that the boycott of Jewish enterprises be discontinued, the Reichsvertretung der Deutschen Juden, German Jewish representative body, today made public the program formulated at a special conference of twenty-five leading Jewish central organizations in Germany as well as all leading Jewish communities throughout the country.

Emphasizing that “the Nuremberg laws have affected the Jews in Germany to the utmost,” the Reichsvertretung declares that it is willing to do its best to create the tolerable relations between Germans and Jews indicated by Hitler in his speech before the Reichstag at Nuremberg. The Reichsvertretung, however, points out that this is possible only if anti-Jewish defamation and the boycott against Jewish firms ceases and if the Government recognizes the autonomy of Jewish cultural and religious rights.

The demand is also made that the Reichsvertretung be officially recognized by the Government as the official representative Jewish autonomous organ.

In return, the Reichsvertretung obligates itself to organize and supervise the education of Jewish youth, and to prepare them “for the difficulties which face their future life.” The teaching of Hebrew will be emphasized and emigration of German Jews to Palestine will be organized.

Plans for organizing large-scale emigration to Palestine, the Reichsvertretung revealed, would include the teaching of new professions to prospective emigrants and the creation of possibilities for them to liquidate their property in Germany or transfer it abroad.

The Reichsvertretung also undertakes to maintain all Jewish social and religious institutions, including Jewish hospitals and homes for the aged. This involves raising financial support for them, and winning additional State support. Economic assistance to Jews applying for relief is also being planned. Emphasizing that it places its hopes on the future of Jews in Palestine, the Reichsvertretung appeals to all Jewish communities to support the Keren Hayesod, Zionist colonizing fund. It also proclaims its readiness to act as non-Zionist representative for Germany in the Jewish Agency for Palestine.

Replying to the Jewish demands, Air Minister Goering’s newspaper National Zeitung, denies that it is defamation when the German press continually accuses Jews of committing “race desecration” or conducting revolutionary propaganda throughout the world. The paper also states that the Nazi papers do not incite against the Jews when they call the Jews “a nation of murderers.”

Goering’s paper predicts “further developments” which will “make it more difficult for Germans to deal with Jews.” The paper, however, welcomes that part of the Jewish program which calls for the organization of a larger emigration of Jews from Germany. “To this point of the program,” the Zeitung states,

“we say ‘yes’ without reservation, providing, however, Jewish emigrants leave Germany never to return.”

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