What do the
diaries of Dr Joseph Goebbels tell us about the jewish
assassin Herschel Grynszpan
|Chapter: A FATE WHICH BEGGARS ALL
threats of retribution once Hitler was
overthrown. 'But that cannot be,' dictated
Goebbels. 'That must not be, and that shall not
Fears for his own safety were never far from his
mind. He saw every living Jew as a potential
assassin. Nine-tenths of the assassinations in
Paris were being committed by Jews, which was, he
conceded, hardly surprising under the
circumstances. 'It would be best either to deport
the remaining yids from Paris, or to liquidate the
lot.' He was planning an elaborate
public trial of Herschel Grynszpan, who had fallen
into Nazi hands in 1940, but the assassin's crafty
lawyers had now floated the theory that he and his
victim Rath had been homosexual lovers.
This was potential dynamite for the enemy
propaganda. Before Goebbels could stop it, the
minister of justice included this infamous
allegation in the court papers and, worse, ruled
that the trial should allow public discussion of
the deportation of the Jews -- a development which
Goebbels found 'incredibly inept.' Thus
the Grynszpan affair turned to ashes in his hands,
Leopold Gutterer reviewed the dossier and advised
Goebbels to drop the prosecution
Grynszpan's trial was put on ice; indeed, he
survived the war. Gutterer was told he had sat at
the back of a Hamburg court-room in the fifties
when he himself was on trial. This was one of the
ultimate ironies of the Final Solution which the
young Jew's pistol shots in 1938 had helped to
Notes on sources:
- 85 Unpubl. Goebbels diary
(see picture below), Apr 29,
1942, p. 10.
- 86 Diary, May 27, 1942.
- 87 Unpubl. diary, May 15, 1942.
- 88 Diary, Jan 24, 1942. ZStA Potsdam, Rep.
50.01, RMVP vols 713, 977- 93 and 1008, and Heiber's
study in VJZ, 1957, 134ff.
- 89 Diary, Apr 3, 5, 14; JG's correspondence
- 1942 (ND: NG-973, NG-1028).
- 90 Gutterer statements Sep 29 and Nov 2, 1953
(HZ file, ZS.490); Otto Abetz, memo on a talk between
Hewel and Bormann, Apr 18 (ND: NG-179); JG diary, May 14,
1942. See Weizsäcker's file on France, vol. ii (Pol.
Archiv AA Serial 110; NA film T120, roll 112,
Kristallnacht news: German
"scholar" says Herschel Grynszpan was Jewish
homosexual who killed his Nazi lover First-Secretary