Cox, F. Gardner, Jr.
Communist press in West Germany, pp. 5-7 PDF (1.8 MB)
Communist Press 0 in Western Germany By F. GARDNER COX, Jr. Office of Public Affairs, HICOG PROBABLY THE EASIEST writing job in Western Germany is for one of the 16 Communist news- papers. For a newspaperman who could bring himself to accept the principles of the Communist Party, the assignment would be easy: "Look for examples where you can claim people are being oppressed. If they are suffering injustice, that's even better. Especially try to find evidence that the 'bosses' or the Western Allies are the oppressors." The prospective candidate for such work could forget most of what he already knew about writing news stories. He would be expected to introduce violent editorial opinion into the simplest item. He would not be called to account for the accuracy of his facts. He would be permitted to make the broadest allegations, in- cluding libelous ones, against groups, persons or in- stitutions. He must know how to overestimate attendance at a Communist rally by several hundred percent and minimize the attendance at anti- or non-Communist gatherings. He must see support for Communist aims where no support exists. And he should end the major- ity of his stories with two or three of the dozen slogans which are currently emphasized in Soviet propaganda. He must know how to threaten Soviet conquest while pleading for peace, and characterize aggression as "self- defense." He must profess that Western economies are catapulting to ruin while Soviet and satellite economies march upward and onward; that Marshall Plan aid means exploitation; that Military Assistance constitutes dump- ing; that the North Atlantic Pact is aggressive; and that the Cominform is a benevolent association. Atomic bomb testing beyond the Urals constitutes "the moving of mountains for a gigantic and peaceful ir- rigation project," and the "progressive" brothers of yesterday become the "Tito-Fascists" of tomorrow's edition. The Communist journalist writes on. The assign- ment is easy, and the writer has time to concentrate on developing his style. T HE16 NEWSPAPERS which require such talents comprise a tightly knit chain extending from one end of the German Federal Republic to the other. The network is headed by the Freies Volk, of Duesseldorf. It is by Mr. Cox the central organ of the Kommunisti- Bulletin, was sche Partei Deutschlands (Communist Public Relation Party of Germany, or KPD), and party Public Affairs, f unctionaries throughout west Germany for immediate are expected to read it in addition material beca to the KPD newspaper of their locality. The newspapers are: British Zone Freies Volk (Free People), Duesseldorf. Die Wahrheit (The Truth), Hanover. Hamburger Volkszeitung (Hamburg People's Pape!r), Ham- burg. Volksstimme (People's Voice), Cologne. Neue Volkszeitung (New People's Paper), Dortmund. Volksecho (People's Echo), Detmold. Norddeutsches Echo (North-German Echo), Kiel. French Zone Unser Tag (Our Day), (printed in Mannheim), Offenburg. Neues Leben (New Life), (printed in Mannheim), Ludwigs- hafen. Unsere Stimme (Our Voice), Sc'hwenningen. US Zone Suedbayerische Volkszeitung (South Bavarian People's Paper), Munich. Nordbayerische Volkszeitung (North Bavarian Pleople's Papetr), Nuremberg-Fuerth. Sozialistische Volkszeitung (Socialist People's paper), Frankfurt. Badisches Volksecho (People's Echo of Baden), Manryheim. Volksstimme (People's Voice), Stuttgart. Tribuene der Demokratie (Tribune of Democracy), B yemen- Bremerhaven. These 16 papers follow a unified policy dictated by the directives of the KPD. Their editors are the Ieading party functionaries of the locality, many of whom hold important positions without salary as one of their regular party duties. Their readers are party members, actual and prospective, and the curious (who buy occasional copies at newsstands). It is impossible for any of these readers to distinguish between the newspapers and the Communist Party, for each paper is considered an arm of the party by the KPD itself. The KPD owns, staffs and produces all of its newspapers, and owns all but a few , orig for tl refl as Div F HIC i use Euse ginally written he Information eased by the iision, Office of OG, on Aug. 16 as background of its timely of the presses which print them. THE IMPORTANCE which the KPD attaches to its newspapers stems not only from their usefulness in keep- ing the rank and file abreast of the latest ramifications of the party line. Prior to currency reform in June 1948 SEPTEMBER 1950 INFORMATION BULLETIN 5
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