Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression Volume IV
Document No. 2237-PS

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File on actions against the Jews in November 1938
Action against the Jews on 9 and 10 November 1938
Legal Regulations
Reich Commissioner for the Re-Union of Austria with the German Reich
Vienna I, 18 November 1938
phone R, 50-5-60

To the Minister President, Generalfieldmarshal Goering, Berlin


The action in Vienna which took place during the night from 9 to 10 November was finished up completely by Tuesday.

The following is what happened substantially:

A decree of Dr. Goebbels, the Reichsminister for Propaganda, but above all his speech which he delivered in Berlin on the evening of 9 Oct 1938 as well as the contents of the speech he made in Munich were preludes for this so-called action. Though the hint was somehow indefinite, no different conclusion could be drawn since it said: "The fire-department has to be notified". This order was not given in the first place to the district leaders, but the lower echelons [Gliederungen] were notified first so that the district-leader had no chance to possibly take counter-measures. Besides there existed a few orders which were farther reaching than the hint by Dr. Goebbels. Here in Vienna in many cases even the schools were closed in the morning so that the youth could participate-"according to the order" in the demonstrations. As always happens in such cases, the disorderly elements soon were leading and 40 different places were on fire. Around noontime the Major reported that the fire-department was no more in the position to control the situation. Simultaneously, the tumult against the Jewish stores began. That, one may say was the signal for the day and the night of the long fingers. How did the Party act in this situation, and especially the political leaders?

Fieldmarshal, I assure you, that after thorough investigation I am able to state today that the political leaders, and that is the district leaders and their Kreis-leaders, are the ones who have prevented chaos in Vienna. Enormous quantities of stolen merchandise, above all jewelry and valuables were safeguarded immediately by the Kreis-leaders, and at this moment an inventory is being made. Gold, silver and valuables will be brought to a safe in a bank today. There is no question of returning the goods which were taken away from the Jews because one does not know their original owners and also because the Jews make the most outrageous and untruthful statements. Therefore I am forced, my Fieldmarshal, to safeguard an extremely high quantity of valuables. The rest of the goods will be checked, and shall be sold to retail-shops for the purchase-value, since we have to expect a scarcity of goods on account of the protective measures for our territory which we had to take [Gebietsschutzmassnahmen].

Especially the enclosed orders will be necessary, for the restoration of normal conditions and of a legal status.

Fieldmarshal, please do examine the enclosures. In case you have no objections, I would like to enforce them immediately.

I may refer again to my request for support as for the introduction of the laws on organization and also for the execution of the Fuehrer-order.

Heil Hitler!

sign.: [illegible]

Telephone-message of the Kripo D.D.

State Police Vienna, Reg. Rat Dr. Pifrader gives the following information via phone at 07,30:

Since the Kripo-agencies [Kripostellen] of the "POl.-Aemter" are constantly making inquiries at the state police (Stapo), they will have to be informed by phone of the following:

Influential and rich male Jews of German nationality of not too high an age and who are healthy have to be arrested.

The owners of the fire-arms are to be treated especially severely and a special notation has to be made about them.

The police agencies [Po. Amtsdienststellen] have to be informed (as top secret) that the property of all native Jews has to be razed entirely. Therefore the police is not supposed to come to the aid of Jews in such cases.

Fires may be started only where there is no danger that the fire may spread. Therefore, as a rule, not in narrowly built parts of the city.

On a whole about 3,000 Jews are to be arrested.

Dr. Bayer D.D. of the Kripo
Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression Volume IV
Office of the United States Chief Counsel for Prosecution of Axis Criminality
Washington, DC : United States Government Printing Office, 1946

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