- CONCILIATION IN AUSTRIA [To the Editor of THE SPECTATOR.] SIR,—S.
P. M. L.'s impressions on his month's stay in Graz and those of your Vienna correspondent have to me been of extraordinary interest. During a four months' stay in and near Salzburg with a patriotic Austrian family I received many impressions. May I mention one ?
That the majority of the so-called Nazis in Austria are merely youths, who through hopelessness, lack of employment and poverty are doped by attractive promises, are lured into committing acts of terror is, I am convinced, a fact. May I support this statement with a true story ?
Political feeling was strong in the hamlet where I was staying. The little inn adjoining the tower in which we lived was Heimwehr, while the other Gasthof across the way was the centre of local Nazi activities. In spite of the Nazi sympathies of the parish priest, the school-master and the cobbler relations during the day were fairly normal ; it was after dark when swastikas were painted on our door and when both sides started to "play soldiers." One night it was rumoured that a store of gunpowder lay in a house near by, and one night later a bomb which had failed to
explode was discovered. Owing to the information given by one of our Heimwehr guards the men responsible for laying the bomb were discovered ; two of them were members of our guard and were arrested in their Heimwehr uniforms. They were simple, unemployed peasants who through lack of adventure and poverty accepted sixty schillings from a Nazi agent to frighten us from the country rather than the govern- ment's pay of three schillings for four hours' patrol duty.— Yours, &c.,