Chapter 15: Laws
Berlin in the autumn was beautiful, albeit not as colorful as Kiel. Ivy still missed Kiel, its beaches and its forests, but with the passing of time she missed it less. Whom she didn’t miss less was Uli. They had maintained contact so well it surprised Ivy. They still wrote to each other weekly.
Ivy sat at her bedroom desk next to the window, using up the last hours of bleak sunshine of a cold, cloudy day to finish her letter to him.
September 13, 1935
How are the cutest twins in the whole world? And how are you?
I can’t believe you’re shooting rifles at HJ, that is so cool! Why is it that boys get to do fun and dangerous activities, while at BDM we’re still learning how to be good wives and mothers… ugh. But yes, like you said, I have to keep in mind that they’re training you to become a soldier, while me… well, I’d like to be a soldier too! Perhaps not, but I do want to at least be a contributor to the Reich and not just a girl stuck at home all day.
I’ve been giving it a lot of thought and I think I want to be a teacher. How great would it be to teach little kids one day? My Spanish and English have gotten really good, I think I could teach them after some improvement. Also, it’s so important to pass on all that we’re learning now to the future generations, so that our country is never again brought down by pests like the Jews. And so that we keep The Third Reich pure.
I think becoming a teacher is my calling. What do you think?
Tell me more about what you’re learning at school. You are attending all your classes, right? Over here we are severely punished if we skip classes or if we disagree with the professors, but I’m sure it’s the same for you.
My father and I are leaving tomorrow for the 7th Annual Nuremberg rally, it’s so exciting! The Führer will have a speech on Sunday for the closing and I can’t wait. We’ll be going by train, which is so cool. Also, I’ve never been that far south, I’ll be close to Munich! There is so much to see at Nuremberg, especially its castle and marketplace.
Did you know that in the Middle Ages, Jews were burned at the stake or expelled from the city? Some people even blamed them for the plague. It sounds a little harsh. I doubt it was their fault, yet I don’t pity them.
I will have probably returned by the time you read this, but I will tell you all about the trip as soon as I’m back in Berlin.
Give your parents and the twins a hug for me.
She folded the letter neatly and put it in an ivory envelope. Ivy wished she was going to Kiel instead of Nuremberg, not only to see Uli but also his new sibblings. Uli’s mother had given birth to twins. Two beautiful little girls who, she had been told, looked just like Uli when he was a baby.
“Werner! What do you do in battle if you see someone running at you?” Officer Eisenhower asked.
“Identify his colors, sir,” Uli replied.
“Wrong! You shoot him!” Eisenhower shouted.
“Sir, what if he’s an ally?” Uli asked.
“You shoot, Werner! Enemy, ally, God himself! In a battle there is no time to stop and look! Now go and lift forty times for retorting!”
Uli could barely walk home that day. His whole body ached and every little movement felt like his muscles would tear. Hitlerjugend training was becoming more physically demanding than ever.
He collapsed on the couch after kissing his mother and the babies. Little Trudi and Heidi were sleeping. He envied their peacefulness.
His father had been disappointed to have been given girls, he had hoped the twins would be males. Uli had expected the fact that he was still Father’s only son to improve his attitude towards him, but such was not his luck. He was beginning to get the feeling that nothing ever impressed his father, except Nazism.
The only time Father seemed to stand Uli’s presence was when he praised Hitler and his commanders. Not that it mattered much, since Father wasn’t home too often, thankfully.
He saw that morning’s newspaper had large headlines and a section dedicated to the Nuremberg rally laws. The laws stated how to identify a Jew. If a person had three or four Jewish grandparents he or she was considered a Jew. If said person only had two or less Jewish grandparents, he or she was considered Mischlinge. The laws also stated that anyone of Aryan race, German blood, or kindred blood was fine.
The new laws forbade any marriage or sexual relationships between Germans or kindred blooded people and Jews, Gypsies and Negroes. They stripped Jews of their citizenship as well.
The list was long; the article covered the rally in detail. It was being called the ‘Rally of Freedom’. Compulsory military service had been reintroduced as part of its new laws, therefore giving the nation freedom from the Treaty of Versailles. The attendance had been at over a million people. Ivy must have loved it, he thought.
He went to bed that night thinking of Ivy, as per usual. He dreamed of the next time he would see her, and have her in his arms. There were many girls at school who often tried to get his attention, and while he enjoyed it, he only pretended to be interested in them. In his thoughts, there was only one girl he found beautiful.
Mischlinge translates to Mixed or Half Breeds.
Some of the laws mentioned above weren’t introduced during the rally, but in the weeks and months following it. They were still considered part of the Nuremberg laws. Most of these laws were written by Hitler’s Commanders and not Hitler himself. He asked for different versions of the laws and in the end picked the version he liked the most.