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Military government weekly information bulletin
No. 35 (April 1946)

German reactions,   pp. 17-20 PDF (1.7 MB)


Page 17


german £Peactions
German Press Favors
New Denazification Law
Severity of new law defended and definitive aspects praised by majority of
licensed press. Headlines stress German share In decision.
Darmstadt and Heidelberg papers' reaction is cool.
The new denazification law was, on the
whole, favorably received by the Ger-
man licensed press in the American Zone,
according to an editorial survey by the
OMGUS Information Control Division.
During the week that the new law was
published, it formed the lead story in
almost iof the 30 licensed newspapers
and Die Neue Zeitung, the American
overt paper. Most 'of the newspapers
printed the complete text.
Many of the papers spoke of it as a
"cleansing law." A typical headline in
the Nuremberger Nachrichten said "Ger-
man people to share in the decision.".
Reactions in the Bavarian papers were
mainly friendly but in the western area
somewhat mixed. For example the
DarmstAdter Edho thought the law was
too mild and believed the result would
be reactionary. The Rhein-Neckar Zei-
tung of Heidelberg was rather cool and
pointed out that the law  is an extenr-
sion rather than a limitation. In contrast,
the Frankfurter Rundschau stated that
"the overwhelming majority of Germans
will be able to utter as a sigh of relief,
'I 'am not affected."' The Stuttgarter
Zeitung praised the democratic guar-
antees and possibilities of appeals and
defense and contrasted it with Nazi legal
practices. The Marburger Presse wel-
comed the fact that a variety of shades
of guilt are recognized under the new law.
Other press comment follow in some
detail:
Schwaebisdie Donau Zeltung of Ulm
. . Whoever thinks the law too severe
should cure himself from such views by
seeing the film "Mills of Death."
Stuttgarter Zeitung, 9 March . .. "In
addition to and after the- introduction of
this new law, our main task must be
that the conditions which created Na-
tional Socialism and made them strong
and which enabled a spiritual and mor-
al underworld to become leaders and
law-makers may never occur again in
our midst."
Fuldaer Volkszeitung, 9 March
"On March 5 the law for the liberal
tion from National Socialism and Militar-
ism  came into effect; the last act of
political purge has been entrusted to
Germans and exclusively to German
courts. Hardly any other law has been
expected so eagerly by the people as it
concerns the fate of members of practically
every family. Many thousands are now
in a position to rehabilitate themselves
in a proper procedure. The new law
appears to be considerably more severe
than the directives used so far. A far
greater number of people are affected by
it but, on the other hand, there is an
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