A prediction that the regulations under which former SS officers are to be admitted to the new German Army will be changed “within a few weeks” was made here today by a high German Social Democratic Party official. Fritz Heine, a member of the presidium of the Social Democratic Party, told the JTA that he expected such a change as a result of internal opposition to the West German Governments stand.
The Social Democratic leader, who spoke here at a luncheon in his honor tendered by the Jewish Labor Committee, said that his party was opposed to permitting former active Nazis to obtain commissions in the new Army. Former Waffen SS members would automatically be considered to come under that ban, he added, unless thorough investigation proved otherwise. Only after such an investigation would persons in that category be enabled to obtain a commission.
In his address to the luncheon, Herr Heine, who was introduced by Adolph Held, JLC national chairman, declared that the resurgence of neo-Nazism was not a problem in Germany at the present time. He disclosed that a group of experts on the problem at a recent Social Democratic conference had agreed that neo-Nazism was not now a threat. “I would not be honest, however,” he added, “if I said it will remain so forever.” He pledged his party would do everything in its power to hinder such a resurgence and added it would need help from both inside and outside Germany to continue that policy in full force.
Herr Heine, who is now in the United States to observe the current election campaign, said that his party attempted to maintain contact with the Jewish population of Germany, that it continued to press for speedy implementation of the indemnification laws, and that it would fight against the re-appearance of anti-Semitism on the German scene.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.