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

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


Page 18

,advantage which not be lovieremphasized.
That is that the court is at liberty to
consider each case individually without
being bound by the date of joining the
nazi party or by the holding of an office
within the party machine."
Hessisdie Nadirichten, 6 March
(the denazification law) "adheres to, the
principle of dealing with every case in-
dividually and emphasis the legal element
in the procedure. Severity against the
main culprits, leniency for the followers
- these are its characteristics."
Frankfurter Rundsciau, 8 March
"The hour of the great examination of
the conscience is come. Nobody who
really cares for the political and spiritual
liberation of our people, may say that
this law is too severe, that it is an
anachronism. Nor may anybody speak
of Christia~n charity or pardon. The law
is a bitter necessity because only through
it can justice be restored."
Rhein-Neckar Zeitung, 9 March:
"One of the surprises of the new law lies
in 'the special appendix that determines
;4 priori those who belong to the first
two groups 'of the -main culprits, and the
guilty. That will disappoint many who
had hoped for alleviation. The lost war
'and the individual past are going  to
weigh like lead on the shoulders of all
those in the two categories. However
the terrible weight of the guilt that the
new law. again makes painfully evident
is accompanied by a certain feeling of
relief that everybody's fate now will be
settled and that also definite exoneration
can be obtained ... One thing is most
essemtial: If we really want to overcome
National Socialism there must be, back
of all this denazification of individuals,
nthe will to create such forms of economic
life as will let the people feel their
community of interest and. as will give
them 'an inkling of a justice that makes
everybody bear his share of the burden,
but that also lets him live and breathe."
The Elections in Retrospect, A Oerman Opinion Poll
The Germans went to the polls last
January from a sense of duty and in the
hope 'of "bringing about democracy and
-a better future," according to a recently
released ICD poll on reactions! to local
election results. Election issues were
perceived mainly in terms of the rela.
tiou-ship iof the German people to the
occupation authority rather than in terms
of inter-party politics.
AM important segment of the popula-
tion was surprised by the relative weak-
ness of the parties of the left and the
large vote polled by the Christian par-
ties. (WIB No. 26, 26 Jan 46, and No.
27, 2 Feb- 46.) Confidence that the newly
elected candidates would do a good job
was expressed by most of the 1,000 in-
terviewees who were carefully chosen
from all-sized communities to provide a
sample representative of the whole Ame-
rican Zone.
PRINCIPAL ISSUES
All interviews were asked what they
considered the principal issue of the'ellec-
tion. Replies indicated widespread public
recognition 'of the fact that these elections
were not democratic elections in the usual
sense in which self-government is carried
out. Few people referred to inter-party
issues or competition for political power
as having been at stake. Upper-most in
their minds, was the relationship iof the
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