The Ambassador in Germany (Dodd) to the Secretary of State

No. 252

Sir: With reference to my despatch No. 219 of October 19,49 and particularly to enclosure 3a, a translation of an article published by the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung, to the effect that Minister Göring had issued an order to the appropriate authorities to protect foreign citizens against attack, I have the honor to transmit a copy in translation of an order relating to this subject issued by Rudolf Hess, the Deputy Leader of the National Socialist Party.

The Department will observe that members of the National Socialist Party are warned against “the commission of transgressions and other actions intended to create discontent among the general public” or the exercise of pressure on non-party members in regard to the giving of the Nazi salute. This announcement would appear to be another step taken by the National Socialist officials to restrain their over-enthusiastic followers.

In this connection, therefore, it will probably be of interest to the Department to learn that during a recent conversation between an officer of this Embassy and Mr. Kirkpatrick, the First Secretary of the British Embassy, the latter expressed the opinion that this order may have been [Page 398] motivated by the protest made by that Embassy following upon an attack made several days ago in Berlin by a Nazi on an Englishman who failed to give the salute when a Nazi detachment with flags passed by.

Whether the Government in Berlin will succeed in stopping these incidents will depend of course on the control exercised by them over their subordinates throughout Germany. That there may possibly be reason to doubt this is evidenced by the case of Mr. Noel Panter, a British newspaper correspondent who was arrested and imprisoned by the Bavarian officials during the latter part of October (see my despatch No. 246 of November 4).50 According to Mr. Kirkpatrick, the British Embassy, which has been active in obtaining the release of Mr. Panter, experienced the greatest difficulty during its efforts in his behalf, as the statements made by the central authorities in Berlin were frequently at variance with those of the Bavarian officials. In view of the fact that the chief officials of the state governments are Statthalters directly responsible to the Chancellor of the Reich, the difficulty experienced by the British Embassy is deserving of attention.

Respectfully yours,

William E. Dodd
  1. Not printed.
  2. Ante, p. 263.