Page 94 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 54

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Friedman
86
that the captured Jewish book treasures might serve a useful pur­
pose for founding specialized research libraries on the Jewish ques­
tion. Upon the seizure of Sudetenland in the autumn of 1938,
Alfred Rosenberg, the Nazi top theoretician, requested the Reich
Commissioner for the Sudeten area, Konrad Henlein, to confis­
cate all Jewish religious and secular literature. Henlein promptly
delegated this undertaking to one of his aides, Dr. Suchy. In No­
vember, 1938, the Chief of the Security Policy, Reinhard Heydrich
accompanied his directives for the Cristall Night pogroms with
this injunction: “The archives of the Jewish communities are to be
confiscated by the police, so that they will not be destroyed [in the
planned anti-Jewish riots]. . . . Important in this respect is the his­
torically valuable material.” The following dispatch sent on No­
vember 15,1938, by local SS and police leaders from Graz, Austria,
reveals how Heydrich’s orders were observed: “By order of the
Special Police the valuable library of the Rabbi [D. Herzog] was
placed under the seal of the Gestapo during the night ofNovember
10th, [also] . . . large portions of the archives and the library [of the
Synagogue] were removed by the Special Police from the burning
office building to safe custody.”The same line of action is indicat­
ed in a letter written by a high SS officer in Munich on March 18,
1939: “The Special Police . . . is designated as the official agency
for the processing of the Jewish archives [and books] taken into
custody during the
Judenaktion.
Alfred Rosenberg, whom Hider had charged with the Nazi in­
doctrination of the German people, was given the additional as­
signment of waging the “ideological and spiritual war against Jews
and Judaism.”This program included, among other things, the es­
tablishment of a
Hohe Schule
(Advanced Training Institute) of the
NSDAP in Frankfurt to study the “ideological enemies of Na­
zism,” particularly the Jews. On January 29, 1940, Hider autho­
rized Rosenberg to continue the preparations, already under way,
for setting up the
Hohe Schule
, and to procure for its library all nec­
essary items from Jewish libraries and collections. Rosenberg was
also authorized to set up an adequate staff for the acquisition of
Jewish property. Thus the infamous
Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosen­