Dr. Gregory Munro is Lecturer in European History at Australian Catholic University. He earned his Ph.D. in History at the University of Queensland. He has been awarded postdoctoral research grants from the German Academic Exchange Service for research in German Church history in the Weimar Republic and the Third Reich. Dr. Munro is the author of Australia and the “Kaiser’s War” 1914-1918 – On Understanding the ANZAC Tradition, Argument and Theses (1993, with John Moses) and has edited chapters in books, written journal articles, and published book reviews.2006 0-7734-5735-6
This book examines an important but previously relatively unknown chapter in the Roman Catholic opposition to the rise of the Nazi Party between 1923 and 1933. In 1929, Dr. Georg Moenius (1890-1953), a Catholic priest from the Archdiocese of Bamberg, became editor of the highly-respected Munich weekly journal, the Allgemeine Rundschau
, which had been published in Munich since 1904. The journal had been a relatively conservative Catholic journal noted for its support of the Catholic Centre Party and Bavarian Catholic culture. Under Moenius’ editorship, the Allgemeine Rundschau
attained great notoriety in Central Europe for its fearless and bitter critique of the rise of the German right wing extremist groups, especially the ascendant National Socialist Party of Adolf Hitler, whom Moenius denounced as the ‘anti-Christ.’ Indeed, Moenius’ constant warnings of the peril of Nazism and Hitler were so shrill and persistent that he was accused (even by many who were otherwise sympathetic to him) of being afflicted by a ‘Moenomania.’
The Allegemeine Rundschau
was banned in 1933, and Moenius fled Germany to escape arrest. The headstrong priest had to emigrate from one country to another as the Nazi Reich expanded between 1938 and 940, until finally he found refuge in the small colony of German emigrants in Los Angeles. Of those associates who remained in Germany after the Nazi seizure of power, many were banned from journalism. Others were placed in concentration camps.
This book is based on an extensive array of archival material from Germany, Austria and Switzerland and relevant primary sources from those countries. Given the important developments in German historiography in the twentieth century, which saw the breakdown of German statist tradition and that Germany is now of the most important members of the European Union, the significance and importance of the prescient critique of the Allgemeine Rundschau
cannot be overstated.