Jewish History

A Medallion with a Swastika and a Star of David?

2 public auction houses sold a strange medallion this past week. It was a Nazi medallion with a Swastika and a Star of David. The rare medallion whose sides had polar opposite symbols on it was sold in public auction at the Kedem Auction House for $1046.00. A few days before, it was sold on the 10th of Tevet which is called the National Kaddish Day’, by the Israeli CollecTodo Auction House for $850.00.  

The medallion was minted for a series of articles that were printed in a Nazi periodical Der Angriff (The Attack) called “A Nazi Travels to Palestine.” It is a reminder of the strange partnership between the German Zionist Union and the Nazi party who at the time shared a common goal of getting Jews out of Germany and Aliya to Israel in the year 1934.

One side of the coin has the Star of David with the words “Ein Nazi Fahrt Nach Palestine” “A Nazi Travels to Palestine”  and the other side has a swastika in its top center with the words ‘Underzahlt Davon Im Angriff” meaning “As written about in ‘The Attack’”. Then medallion is 3.5 centimeters (1 3⁄8 inches).

The Kedem Auction Website explains the background history of this medallion.

“In the beginning of Nazi rule in Germany, the Zionist Movement was inclined to cooperate with the line adopted by the Nazi government in its early days – encouraging immigration of German Jews to Eretz Israel. In the spring of 1933 the German Zionist Association decided to contact elements within the Nazi party who might support the Zionist cause.

Kurt Tuchler, a Jewish-German jurist and judge and member of the managing committee of the German Zionist Federation, contacted Leopold von Mildenstein, head of the Jewish department of the SD (Security Service of the Nazi Party and the SS) and asked him to write in the Nazi press about the Jewish settlement in Eretz Israel. In 1933, the two men traveled to Eretz Israel with their wives, for one month, to let von Mildenstein to get an impression of the booming Zionist enterprise.

In a report Tuchler delivered to Yad VaShem years later he wrote: “The purpose of the visit was to create an image in an important Nazi paper which would promote the construction operations in Eretz Israel”. Upon his return to Germany von Mildenstein published a series of 12 illustrated articles about his visit to Eretz Israel in the Nazi journal Der Angriff (“The Attack”), the mouthpiece of Joseph Goebbels, the Nazi Propaganda Minster. The articles were titled “A Nazi Travels to Palestine”. To commemorate the series of articles Goebbels struck this medallion.” (From the Kedem Auction House Website.)

Unfortunately when the war started and progressed and no one wanted the Jews in their country (they were even offered on sale a dollar each) Hitler continued his grisly inhumane job of implementing the final solution killing 6 million Jews. The final solution may have been implemented a half year before Hitler and the mufti met in the end of 1941 but their meeting would close the door on any chance of getting Jews out of Germany and into Israel. 


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