Full Citation

  • Title Soviet-Backed Party Wary on Border Issue
  • Author From the Herald Tribune Bureau
  • Publication Title New York Herald Tribune (European Edition)
  • Collection New York Herald Tribune (European Edition)
  • Date Sunday,  Sept. 22, 1946
  • Issue Number 19796
  • Page Number 5
  • Place of Publication Paris, France
  • Language English
  • Document Type Article
  • Publication Section News
  • Source Library The New York Times Company
Soviet-Backed Party Wary on Border Issue Socialist Unity Manifesto Sees Problem Raised By Reactionary Groups Diversion Is Suspected First Statement in Zone Since Molotov Speech From the Herald Tribune Bureau BERLIN, Sept, 21.—The Soviet- sponsored Socialist Unity party, in a manifesto published today, warn¬ ed against the issue of Germany’s eastern frontier being used by "camouflaged Fascist and reaction¬ ary elements” as a red herring to divert the attention of the German people from its “most acute vital problems.” This is the first public pronouncement of the majority political party in the Russian Zone of Germany on the question of the Reich’s frontier with Poland since Vyacheslav M. Molotov, Russian Foreign Minister, declared at Paris last Monday that the line drawn at the Potsdam conference last year was definite. The latest pronouncement of the Socialist Unity party on this sub¬ ject was drawn up at the meeting of the executive committee of the party last Thursday under the chairmanship of the two co-leaders —Wilhelm Pieck and Otto Grote- wohlr—but it is published in the party press for the first time this morning. Although it does not expressly repudiate the stand it took during the recent elections in the Soviet Zone, when it formally proclaimed in mass meetings and the press that “the eastern frontier is only provisional” (and reaffirmed by Grotewohl in a statement to the Herald Tribune this week), it puts a lot of water in this heady wine. Recalls Hitler Attitude “The Socialist Unity party will do everything in order that, in the question of the future frontiers of Germany, the voice of the German people may find a hearing at the Peace Conference” is all that this pro-Russian party promises its fol¬ lowers now. In trying to soft-pedal the question of Germany’s future frontiers, the Socialist Unity party is taking a stand that directly calls to mind the attitude of Adolf Hitler and the Nazis toward the issue of the South Tyrol, then under the heels of the Fascist tyrant Mussolini, when their Liberal and Republican foes tried to raise that issue before the wâr. “The Socialist Unity party calls attention to the attempts of certain reactionary circles to exploit the question of the eastern frontier for the purpose of loosening a new nationalist chauvinistic agitation which can only do serious harm to the German people in the shaping of the peace treaty and in connec¬ tion with the future German fron¬ tiers,” says the latest manifesto of the Soviet-favored party. “Camou¬ flaged Fascists and reactionary ele¬ ments, who are nestling in the bourgeois democratic organizations, are endeavoring to divert the at¬ tention of German people from the solution of the most acute vital problems. Instead of carrying out the democratic land reforms throughout all Germany, which would assure shelter for tens of thousands of settlers and the feed¬ ing of millions of men, the reac¬ tionaries are trying to dust off the old aggressive Nazi solution of vital space. Sees Revenge Move “The demagogic bringing up of the frontier question serves like¬ wise to avail federalists and sepa¬ ratist efforts and the diverting of attention from newly-planned an¬ nexations of territory in Western Germany. The same reactionary circles who are preparing the ground for the ideas of revenge in the East are deliberately silent about the defeat which they would inflict on the new democratic Ger¬ many in the separation of the Saar district. The Socialist Unity party is doing everything in its power to bring about a fundamental political transformation of Germany by rendering impotent the aggressive war criminals and Nazis. Thereby, in trying to create esteem and con¬ fidence for the German people in the minds of other nations, espe¬ cially in neighboring countries, the Socialist Unity party iwill make it possible for the German people to get an endurable peace treaty in the impending peace negotiations." The leaders of all the other poli¬ tical parties in the Russian Zone, in reply to the Molotov declaration, have now categorically taken the position that the present eastern frontier of Germany is only pro¬ visional. Thus Jakob Kaiser, leader of the Christian Democrats, de¬ clared: “No definitive ruling on the eastern question was taken at Potsdam. The Poles do not need this area and are not in a position to settle it, while we must feed more people in less space than in 1938.” Franz Neumann, leader of the Social Democratic party in Berlin, stated: “I trust that the promise of the Atlantic Charter will be kept, by which not the German people but their Fascist leaders should be punished and that terri¬ tories will be detached from the Reich only after the wishes of the people affected have been ascer¬ tained.” Lastly, Dr. Wilhelm Kuelz, chairman of the Liberal party,, said that his party “had not altered its position that the question of Ger¬ many’s eastern frontier had not been definitely settled.” Predicts Showdown Vote BERLIN, Sept. 21 (U.P.-.—Colonel Louis Glaser, chief of the political affairs branch of American Military Government in Berlin, predicted to¬ day that the October 20 Berlin municipal elections would be the first step in deciding the issue of an Eastern or Western concept of democracy for Germany. In a surprisingly outspoken article written for the weekly Military Government newspaper, the former Boston advertising man said he considered it fortunate that the is¬ sue was drawn. “It is obvious that Germany must ultimately make this decision,” he said. “The Berlin vote, estab¬ lishing such a decision, will have great influence upon the ultimate destiny of Germany and therefore upon the political destiny of Eu¬ rope.” The Berlin elections, Glaser pre¬ dicted, Will provide a preliminary decision on the fundamental issues presently at Stake in Germany and in all of Europe.