Interview with Joachim Prinz
Audio-visual item #512: Interview with Joachim Prinz
Participant(s)/creator(s): Lenni Brenner Joachim Prinz
Date of issue:
8 February 1981
Type of content:
Topic(s) addressed: People/entities mentioned in this item:
(Those seen or heard in the item are marked with a camera, )
Timeline events mentioned in this item:
Lenni Brenner interviews Joachim Prinz, asking him about the collaboration between German Zionists and the Nazis in the 1930s.
These MP3 files were made by digitizing the content of two audio cassette tapes provided by Lenni Brenner in December 2006.
A partial transcript of this interview was published in the book 51 Documents: Zionist Collaboration With the Nazis
Brenner asks Prinz about this book which Prinz had published in 1934.
Comment by Lenni Brenner
Prinz (1902-1988) definitely thought that Zionism could come to an
accommodation with Nazism.
But he dramatically evolved in the 44 years since he was expelled from
Germany. He told me, off tape, that he soon realized that nothing he said there
sense in the US. He became an American liberal. Eventually, as head of the
American Jewish Congress, he was asked to march with Martin Luther King and he
I decided that, beyond using the interview in my book, Zionism in the Age of
the Dictators, I wouldn't do anything with it that would embarrass him in his
old age. I did the right thing. The wannabe collaborator was very different
from the gentleman who invited me into his home and honestly answered what he
knew would be probing questions. But if he changed, Zionism didn't. Now it is
obligatory for me to bring the interview to the world's attention for the
indisputable confirmation it provides re Zionist fantasies about a deal with Hitler.
"Well, we thought, in our discussions with intellectuals in the SS movement,
that the time would come when they would say, 'Yes, you live in Germany, you
are Jewish people, you are different from us, but we will not kill you, we will
permit you to live your own cultural life, and develop your own national
capacities and dreams.' We thought, at the beginning of the Hitler regime that
such a very frank discussion was possible. We found among the SS intellectuals,
some people were ready for such a talk. But of course such a talk never took
place because the radical element in the Nazi movement won out."
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