In the March 24 issue of the Kansan we read an article about the Mennonites in Germany having a favorable attitude toward Adolf Hitler. They obviously had a different worldview than we Americans did. Let me explain.

All four of my grandparents immigrated from what is now Ukraine in 1874. They all left relatives behind and when the Bolshevics took over the country and raped and murdered the Christians. Many also went to Germany. That means the German Mennonites heard the stories about Communism from these refugees. Right after WW2II in 1919 the communists took over in Germany and they could have suffered the same fate as those in the Ukraine. The Navy and the Church threw them out. The Mennonites saw this happen.

By 1933, with the economic conditions that existed in Germany at the time, they were about ready to take over again. In the parliamentary elections in 1932 the Communists drew a third of the seats and so did the National Socialists. In January of 1933 von Hindenburg asked Hitler to form a government. By March the Jews and Communists staged an armed uprising and were defeated. Then the Germans had so many prisoners that the jails could not hold all of them. That is when they first built a concentration camp. Most of the prisoners were released in two or three years. The German Mennonites saw this happen. In Hungry the Communists also took over and were also defeated.  The Communists had murdered over a thousand German policemen, politicians and judges and 200 Brown Shirts. The Mennonites had a different worldview because they saw this close up. On March 24,1933 the World Jewish Congress declared war against Germany. They set up a campaign of boycotts, sabotage and outright lies. They controlled most of the news so the world got a lot of disinformation. The Mennonites did not need Nazi propaganda, they saw what happened. Hitler saved them from Communism.

 In WWII when the Germans invaded Ukraine the remaining Christians saw this as liberation. Mennonites joined the German forces. Some of our relatives joined the SS. When the Germans massacred 3700 Jews at one city and some Mennonites participated, at least cooperated, it was not that surprising. They knew who were responsible for the murder of millions of Christians. When the Russians drove the Germans back many Mennonites as well as Lutherans retreated with the German forces and ended up In Dresden in East Germany.

— Emory Goertz, Farmington, New Mexico.