THE "ARYAN" DECREES
HERR HITLER, the leader of the National Socialists, became German Chancellor on January 3Oth, I933, but no legal action was taken immediately to realize the programme of the Party. The National Socialist leaders felt free to act only after the Reichstag, the deliberative and representative parliament of Germany, had been prorogued on March 23rd, I933, and they had assumed dictatorial power. Then, however, decrees followed each other in rapid succession, and within a relatively short time liberals, pacifists, Jews and Christians of Jewish ancestry, were swept from public office, from Government employment, from the social services, and from the liberal professions.
The foundation of the entire structure of National Socialist legislative discrimination consists of sections 3 and 4 of the Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service, issued on April 7th, I933. Section 4 relating to "political" opponents prescribes that
"Officials who, judged from their previous activity, do not warrant that they will always unreservedly exert themselves for their national country, may be dismissed. . . ."1
and subsequent decrees applying this test to professions other than the civil service, have made little effort to define or limit the meaning of this sweeping provision.
To be sure, a clause has generally been inserted designating as "politically unreliable" those who engaged in communist or marxist activities. 2 Enquiries have also been made as to whether persons in Government employ belonged to organiza