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Purim, Der Stürmer and the Nazis

I am reading Saul Friedländer’s Nazi Germany and the Jews: Volume I, The Years of Persecution (also see this post), and in his discussion of the infamous anti-Semetic newspaper Der Stürmer, I happen to come across this timely mention of Purim (emphasis added).

In its August 1935 issue (no. 35), Streicher’s paper took up a story previously published by the Reutlinger Tageblatt about a Jewish chemist, Dr. R.F., who had been accused of torturing a cat to death. According to Der Stürmer, in order to kill the cat, F. had tied it up in a sack, which he then threw onto the concrete in front of his door. “After that, he jumped with both feet on the poor animal, performing a true Negroe dance on it. As he could not kill the animal in that way, although it bled through the sack, he took a board and hit the cat with the edge until he killed it.” Der Stürmer linked the killing of the cat to “the slaughter of 75,000 Persians in the Book of Esther” and the killing of “millions of non-Jews” in “the most horrible way” in contemporary Russia. “The complacent bourgeois thinks far too little about what would happen in Germany if the Jews came to power once more,” Der Stürmer concluded. (p. 124)

Purim was a holiday which was important to the Nazis because it showed how bloodthirsty Jews really are.

The numerous confessions made by the Jews show that the execution of ritual murders is a law to the Talmud Jew. The former chief rabbi, and later monk, Teofite, declared that the ritual murders take place especially on the Jewish Purim in memory of the Persian murders, and Passover in memory of the murder of Christ. (Der Stürmer, no. 14)

In the Book of Esther, we read that in one bloody night the Jews slaughtered and destroyed 75,000 Persians. Even today, the Jew celebrates Purim to commemorate his great triumph. (Robert Ley, Pesthauch der Welt)

Purim was featured in the Nazi propoganda film The Eternal Jew and the Nazis saw Purim as part of a pattern of Jewish responsibility for tragic events in human history.

nazispurim-1.jpg

(from here)

In fact, some of the last words on the lips of Der Stürmer’s editor, Julius Streicher, were about Purim.

As he reached the platform, Streicher cried out, ‘Now it goes to God.’ He was pushed the last two steps to the mortal spot beneath the hangman’s rope. The rope was being held back against a wooden rail by the hangman.

Streicher was swung suddenly to face the witnesses and glared at them. Suddenly he screamed, ‘Purim Fest 1946.’…

The American officer standing at the scaffold said, ‘Ask the man if he has any last words.’

When the interpreter had translated, Streicher shouted, ‘The Bolsheviks will hang you one day.’

When the black hood was raised over his head, Streicher’s muffled voice could be heard to say, ‘Adele, my dear wife.’ (see here)

For more on Purim, the Nazis, and modern-day Hamans, see Elliot Horowitz’s Reckless Rites: Purim and the Legacy of Jewish Violence, pp. 90f.

One Response to “Purim, Der Stürmer and the Nazis”

  1. 1
    hangman game:

    you should give http://www.webhangman.com a look if you like playing hangman… it keeps me busy at work :)

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