Historical fiction: The tragic life of Albrecht von Haar in journal format
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Death threat

I received a death threat his week. It is my first. I am treating it seriously as some of my academic colleagues have also received such threats. I contacted the Berlin police and have recorded a complaint.

The threat was hand-written and placed in a simple envelope with a swastika stamped on it. Strangely, there was also a soiled boot heel mark on the back of the envelope used clumsily as a seal. Not very subtle, all in all.  The police were somewhat sympathetic, but warned me that the threat could have been made to appear to come from the Nazis when it fact it may have come from some other quarter. The writer, or writers, warned me to stop publishing comparisons of German economic and military moves to that of Japan… particularly Japan’s Manchurian invasion and Chinese machinations. The note also referred to my Jewish heritage  and that I should leave Germany for my ‘health.’

By taking the threat seriously, I think I’ve done the prudent thing. I’ve taken out a 25,000 mark life insurance policy that is payable to my brother Hans. I had dinner with him last night  and  explained the whole situation. I asked that he take care of Ada  if something should happen to me. He was quite upset, but I insisted that he give  15,000 marks to Ada and the rest to himself. My father in Bavaria is fairly well off with his pension and his book revenues, so I’m not so much worried about him and my mother. Ada and Hans, on the other hand, could use some help if I disappear from the scene, so to speak.  I am not going to tell Ada of this affair as she would only become overwrought and would insist that I curtail certain aspects of my publication. That I will not do.

Hans asked me if I had any personal protection, such as a gun or even a knife. I do not, but I replied that I will give it serious thought.

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